LUSAKA/KAMPALA — The governments of Zambia and Uganda have respectively dismissed a U.S. Wall Street Journal report alleging that they used Chinese telecommunication giant Huawei Technologies to spy on political opponents.
“The WSJ article on Govt spying on political opponents is malicious, we refute it with the contempt it deserves,” Zambian government spokesperson Dora Siliya said on Twitter on Friday.
“Zambia is a country of laws with Constitution guarantees citizens right to privacy,” She said.
Siliya noted that the country’s telecommunication regulator, the Zambia Information and Communication Technology Authority (ZICTA), was a lawful regulator whose functions do not extend to illegalities as alleged by the report.
“ZICTA operates under authority of the Zambian constitution, which explicitly guarantees our citizens the right to privacy of the personal conservations, data and information,” she said.
The government will continue to safeguard the right to privacy, she said, urging the public to dismiss such reports.
“This WSJ story on Huawei helping govts hack into opposition phones is total hogwash. There’s no evidence,” Ugandan presidential Senior Press Secretary Don Wanyama also said in a tweet.
Wanyama said the move against Huawei is a continuation of the U.S.-initiated trade war and “a new frontier being opened in Africa.”
In a statement issued on Thursday, Huawei also refuted the U.S. news report as unfounded, with inaccurate allegations against its business operations in Africa.
The multinational company said its code of business conduct prohibits any employees from undertaking activities that would compromise its customers or end users’ data or privacy or that would breach any laws.