The Zambian government has defended its decision to deny Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane access into that country.

Maimane was turned back at the airport on Thursday while on his way to attend the treason trial of jailed opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema.

Maimane claims that no reasons were given by authorities at the airport.

However, Zambia’s high commissioner to South Africa, Emmanuel Muamba says Maimane’s visit aimed to undermine the country’s judiciary.

Supporters of Hichilema and President Edgar Lungu have clashed outside the Zambian High Commission in Pretoria.

Maimane, who is also there, has re-iterated his call for the South African government to demand answers from its counterparts in Lusaka.

The International Department said earlier that it had summoned the Zambian High Commissioner to explain the treatment of Maimane.

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– By Amos Phago