gtag('config', 'UA-12595121-1'); Opposition Leader Bemoans Presence of American Military Assets in Zambia – The Zimbabwe Mail

Opposition Leader Bemoans Presence of American Military Assets in Zambia

Fedy M'membe
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Lusaka, Zambia – In a vehement statement, Dr. Fred M’membe, a key figure in Zambia’s opposition, has condemned the secret establishment of an AFRICOM (United States Africa Command) Security Cooperation office in Lusaka by President Hakainde Hichilema’s administration.

Dr. M’membe voiced his concerns over the potential ramifications of hosting superpower military installations on Zambian soil, suggesting that this could have serious implications for national sovereignty and regional stability.

Dr. M’membe revealed that the AFRICOM office was established without public knowledge or debate, a move he described as clandestine and undemocratic. “We don’t need an AFRICOM Security Cooperation office in Zambia,” Dr. M’membe stated emphatically. “In 2022, we wrote to Mr. Hichilema advising him of the dangers associated with having superpower installations in our country. Our warnings have evidently been ignored.”

The opposition leader’s statement underscores a deep concern for the transparency and accountability of the current administration. The secrecy surrounding the establishment of the AFRICOM office raises questions about the government’s motives and its alignment with foreign military powers.

Dr. M’membe’s criticism is not just confined to Zambia. He points to broader regional concerns, referencing recent statements by Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa. During a visit to Russia, President Mnangagwa disclosed information about the consolidation of US military assets in Africa, which he described as a prelude to potential regime change operations. These revelations have heightened fears about the strategic intentions behind the US military’s growing presence on the continent.

“Zimbabwe’s concerns about US military consolidation should not be taken lightly,” Dr. M’membe warned. “The presence of AFRICOM in Zambia could be part of a larger geopolitical strategy that undermines regional stability and sovereignty.”

The opposition leader’s apprehensions are rooted in historical precedents where foreign military bases have often been linked to political and social instability in host countries. The introduction of AFRICOM facilities has previously sparked controversy in other African nations, with critics arguing that such installations serve as tools for surveillance and influence rather than genuine security cooperation.

Dr. M’membe emphasized that Zambia’s security needs can and should be addressed through regional and continental frameworks rather than through dependence on foreign military entities. “We have our regional bodies, such as the African Union and the Southern African Development Community (SADC), which are more than capable of handling our security challenges,” he asserted.

In light of these developments, Dr. M’membe called for immediate transparency from President Hichilema’s government. He urged the administration to disclose the full details of the agreement with AFRICOM and to subject such decisions to public scrutiny and parliamentary approval.

“The people of Zambia have a right to know what deals are being made in their name,” Dr. M’membe declared. “Our sovereignty is non-negotiable, and any actions that compromise our independence must be openly discussed and debated.”

Dr. Fred M’membe’s outspoken opposition to the AFRICOM Security Cooperation office in Lusaka highlights a significant issue at the intersection of national sovereignty, regional stability, and international military influence. His calls for transparency and accountability resonate with broader concerns about foreign military presence in Africa and its implications for local governance and autonomy.

As Zambia navigates these complex geopolitical waters, the need for open dialogue and careful consideration of national interests becomes ever more crucial. Dr. M’membe’s warning serves as a stark reminder of the potential risks associated with secretive government decisions and the importance of safeguarding national sovereignty against external influences.

This week M’membe was subject for allegedly publishing forged letters by President Hakainde and Home Affairs Permanent Secretary, Josephs Akafumba, on “Containing the Catholic Church”.

“This document outlines a five-point plan for Hichilema’s 2026 election campaign. It claims that Hichilema has plans to contain the Catholic Church in Zambia; cover up the corruption of the governing UPND, which he leads; weaken opposition parties; and capture the Electoral Commission of Zambia,” read the statement.

According to Jim, M’membe denies ever having published such a document. “It is outrageous that he should be facing arrest over such a ridiculous allegation.

“Dr M’membe has alerted us to the possibility that the state may execute the arrest warrant at any time because the Zambian government has been cracking down on opposition leaders.

“There have been a spate of abductions in Zambia where members of opposition parties are kidnapped and beaten by the police,” added the statement.