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Home  MANDEVU Constituency  Mandevu Constituency  Zambians Must Invest In Epidemic Prevention
Zambians Must Invest In Epidemic Prevention
Written by Richard Musauka   
Feb 01, 2023 at 08:31 PM

LUSAKA, Feb. 1 - All People in Zambian must immediately begin taking serious steps to invest in prevention measures against epidemics like cholera if we have to avoid unnecessary loss of lives as a nation in future.

Considering the loss of lives that has been reported in the media recently by the Ministry of Health, it is imperative that investment in preventive measures that must begin at individual level be taken into consideration.

There must be serious basic responsibility beginning from the individual level to the central government level which ensures that our surroundings are kept clean. It is very saddening that in various situations, you can find people of different status in our society throwing items that form up significant deadly pitches of dirty, anywhere.

We believe that we can make a change in future if all people can take-up the challenge to keep their surroundings clean. In communities, people must ensure they avoid the selling of edible commodities at any locations. The government must also move with revived long term vigor to provide clean drinking water to citizens.

It is very disheartening to usually find people selling edibles along roads and sometimes just next to toilets, especially in the compounds, while members of the public are seen busy buying and eating in these dirty places. In such situations, it is very conducive for epidemics to spread and make people infected and the whole community affected.

We wish therefore that individuals must wake-up to a challenge to take-up their basic human responsibility to keep their surroundings clean and that those who are involved in trade of food must ensure they conduct their businesses from designated places, the markets. Authorities must induce serious steps here if we have to survive.

There seems to be little serious effort and commitment being spent on prevention of spread of epidemics by all sectors of the country. The Ministry of local government and housing through the Department for Public Health must move in and help curb the problems that come with most taverns and bars that do not provide humane health standards at their premises. Years and years are passing while we continue witnessing situations of dirty in communities but the Local government appears not to be sensitive to these health hazards.

If one moves around the communities of Lusaka, they will be met with a filthy situation of faecal and urinary matter which in most cases have spilled onto roads where food is being sold and some toilets are open surfaces attracting flies among the people.

The dirty in these communities have gone to booming levels such that it is not only cholera which must be thought as the epidemic that is claiming our dear brothers and sisters, but that something that is not seen, is deadly among us due to our own negligent of the very basic responsibility that must partner with our daily lives.

Therefore, we wish to request the Ministry of Local Government and the Lusaka City Council to quickly move into the situation of taverns and bars and ensure those traders who do not meet the required humane health standards, have their trade licenses revoked.

There is also a problem of mushrooming illegal taverns in compounds which only contribute less to the wellbeing of society. These do not only compound formation of dirty but they are common breeding grounds for diseases like HIV and drug abuse. The Lusaka City Council must move with its legal strength and stop the society from further unnecessary loss of lives. What prevents the Council from taking the action the public expect them to provide in order to ensure health communities?

We further wish to call upon the ministries for Health and that of Information to also come into the problem with intensive mobile publicity in the communities.
They must take up mobile effective information programs to strengthen publicity about the basic responsibility for all people to keep clean surroundings.

We wish to extend a challenge on the Ministry for Environment must also begin to pay serious attention to residential and community environment so that people are stopped from throwing of waste anyhow.
DPI feels there is need for concerted efforts and individual investment of all departments of society if Zambia has to avoid unnecessary losses of life to preventable epidemics like cholera.

by Richard Musauka
DPI Acting Media and Strategy Coordinator

User Comments

Comment by GUEST on 2023-02-03 23:18:22
What Zambia must do, is put a far greater emphasis on Local Government. If 1/3 or 1/2 of national revenues were spent at the local government level, the people of Zambia would have all the basic services. Also, services would be delivered irrespective of where they live.  
Right now, money is wasted at the ministerial level.  
In the 2004 budget, $1.1 billion was collected as national revenues. I'm leaving alone the $600 million in 'donor funds', because those are not sustainable or reliable.  
If Zambia had 350 local government units, of 30,000 people each, each of those lgu's would have a budget of $1 million. Which doesn't sound like much, but is one enormous amount more than what they have right now. Revenues should be both collected and disbursed by the ZRA, which should operate in a transparant manner at all times. The amount should be constitutionally determined, so that again no national level politician can interfere with it.  
Those basic services should be: 
1) healthcare 
2) education 
3) policing 
4) public amenities (the subject of your article) 
5) general administrative and informational functions 
Think of the implications. These units of 30,000 people are small enough to make tribe and region irrelevant when it comes to receiving services. Never again can a government withhold basic services because the people living there are the wrong tribe, or because they didn't vote for him or his party.  
If the government prioritized the rest of it's budget for infrastructure, development would be assured. 
The only other thing that has to happen, is that the state owns all natural resources. Let the state own all the mines, and let private companies manage the mines for cost only.  

After a breach of security on our server we had to migrate to a new one. As 10 years of ZTO is aproaching we will have a face lift. Thanks for for patience during the transition and reconstruction. We keep a minimum service.