LUSAKA – Edgar Lungu’s government has denied asylum to senior Zimbabwean opposition politician Tendai Biti, Zambian Foreign Minister Joe Malanji has told agencies.
Ambassador Malanji said Mr. Biti had not been arrested but was rather detained in safe custody as the Zambian authorities awaited communication from the Zimbabwean government before he could be deported.
“He was attempting to seek asylum in Zambia but the grounds under which he would want to seek asylum are not meritorious. So basically he has not been arrested, all we are doing is keeping him in safe custody and waiting for the Zimbabwean authority to help him get back to Harare. The grounds do not merit asylum. He is not in danger. He is only going to answer charges to legitimate courts of law,” Ambassador Malanji said.
Biti allegedly preempted the official announcement of the results by saying MDC Alliance candidate Nelson Chamisa had defeated President Emmerson Mnangagwa in the poll.