LUSAKA, Zambia

Former Zambian President Edgar Lungu broke his silence on Friday, saying he was not under any state captivity despite the recent arrests of his aide-de-camp (ADC) and barber.

The former president’s ADC Chisanga Chanda, and barber Shabby Chilekwa have been linked to a criminal case and questioned by police last week.

“All that starts well, ends well. I am not under captivity or anything. I am around,” Lungu told reporters after members of his former ruling Patriotic Front visited his residence in the capital Lusaka. “Life in retirement is going well,” he added.

He said he did not want to say much about a number of statements that had been made about him following his defeat in the August 2021 general elections, but wanted to allow matters to settle.

Lungu, 65, lost the election to incumbent Hakainde Hichilema by more than a million votes.

He announced his retirement from active politics late last December and Chanda and Chilekwa’s arrests raised speculation among the party ranks that law enforcement agencies could be closing in on him.

“He is the former president who deserves to be honored and respected by all of us Zambians,” remarked Stephen Kampyongo, former home minister in Lungu’s cabinet and now the party’s parliament whip.

However, Lungu still enjoys presidential immunity from prosecution and can only face the law if his immunity is lifted through a two-thirds majority vote in parliament.

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