Power outages have caused serious operational challenges at Chipata General Hospital mortuary.
This came to light during District Epidemic Preparedness Management Meeting held in Chipata.
Senior Environmental Health Technologist, Thomas Mambo Zulu says that power outages by ZESCO, the Zambia Electricity Supply Cooperation have adversely affected the operation of fridges at the mortuary.
And Mr. Zulu says that disinfection of the hospital has been difficulty because they do not have the compression pump which is more reliable and durable.
He says that the justo sprayer, which the hospital is using, is not reliable as it breaks down constantly.
And Mr. Zulu says that although the water situation has improved, erratic water supply by Eastern Water and Sewerage Company affects the operation of the institution especially at night.
He revealed that people are scavenging infectious waste at the incinerators, which is a serious threat to public health.
Meanwhile Mr. Zulu says that dog bite cases are on the increase with cases being reported almost every day at the hospital adding that the situation is worrying.
He says that the hospital has run out of anti-rabies vaccines despite having a lot of stray dogs in the district.
Members of parliament have been challenged to seriously study the 2013 national budget presented by Finance Minister, Alexander Chikwanda.
Governance activist Bonny Tembo says that this will enable the parliamentarians to debate the budget meaningfully during deliberations in parliament.
Mr. Tembo told Breeze News that MPs have a critical role in ensuring that the national cake is shared equally for the benefit of all Zambians.
He has emphasized that MPs should put the interest of the country first.
And Mr. Tembo has advised politicians not to politicise the 2013 national budget but enhance it to bring development.
Chizongwe Technical High School is the new interschool’s national debate champions.
This is after they beat Kasisi Gilrs High School of Lusaka.
And some residents of Chipata have expressed happiness with the achievement by Chizongwe Technical High School.
Joseph Zulu said that the school has done the province proud, and called on the provincial administration to organise a special event for the participants in recognition of the achievement.
He said that it is good that Chizongwe Technical High School has put Eastern Province in the limelight in the country, after beating the other 72 schools that participated in the debate.
Inter-domination prayers this morning failed to take place at St. Anne’s Cathedral in Chipata due to a misunderstanding between the organisers of the prayers and a named Christian organisation.
St. Anne’s Cathedral Parish Priest Father Gabriel Nyoni confirmed this to Breeze News.
Father Nyoni says that the named Christian organisation has refused to be part of the prayers claiming that they already have such prayers taking place every month.
He explained that churches in Chipata had agreed that inter-denomination prayers should take place every month but this cannot be done without approval from the organisation.
Father Nyoni says that there is need to have a common understanding between the organisation and the churches on the issue so that the prayers will be conducted.
The inter-domination prayers bring together different congregations to pray on various issues concerning Zambia and other nations.
The opposition United Party for National Development UPND in Eastern Province says that President Michael Sata should appoint a Zambian judge to chair the Justice tribunal formed to probe three Judges namely Charles Kajimanga, Nigel Mutuna and Philip Musonda.
Deputy Publicity and Information Secretary Victor Mbuzi says that the appointment of Malawian Judge Lovemore Chikopa to chair the tribunal is costing the country a lot of money.
President Sata appointed Judge Chikopa in May 2012 but until date nothing has happened after the three judges challenged their suspension in the courts of law thereby stalling the sittings of the tribunal.
The judge has however, continued to stay in the country.
Mr. Mbuzi says that government is trying to put more money in the pockets of foreigners and not Zambians.
Eastern Water and Sewerage Company says that a report that water in Eastern Province is heavily contaminated has been exaggerated.
Company Technical Manager, Wilson Chifwima says that the quality of raw water in the region differs from place to place.
Mr. Chifwima says that only Mambwe and Petauke districts have been found to have water, which is contaminated.
Speaking during a live radio programme on Breeze FM this morning, Mr. Chifwima explained that water in Mambwe was found to contain Magnesium while water in Petauke contained calcium carbonate.
He however, says that the company addressed both issues and that there is no need for clients to be worried as water being supplied in the two districts is safe for human consumption.
Meanwhile Mr. Chifwima says that human activities like defecating, fishing and washing of clothes have contributed to contamination of water at the treatment plan at Lutembwe Dam Two in Chipata.
He says that the company has been forced to engage the police to stop people conducting any activities at the dam because it is supposed to be a no go area.
Government has been urged to bring back extra duties that were withdrawn from teachers.
Speaking during the World Teachers Day held in Chipata today, Zambia National Union of Teachers National Trustee, Lazarus Chongo says that teachers need the extra duties because they are helpful to society.
Mr. Chongo says that duties like sports are very important as they produce National champions in various activities.
And Mr. Chongo says that this year’s Teacher’s Day is an opportunity to honour men and women who inspire and nature people.
Mr. Chongo called on government to create a supportive teaching environment, adequate teacher training and safeguard the rights of teachers.
He added that government should break the vicious cycle of declining professional conditions for teachers in order to improve the quality of learning for all.
Mr. Chongo also says that an estimated 1.7 million more teacher position are required to reach the goals of Universal Primary Education by 2015.
Meanwhile hundreds of teachers in Mambwe district this morning joined the rest of the world in celebrating World Teachers Day which falls today October 5.
The event which was spiced up by the brass band from Gonda Barracks, attracted all schools in the district to Jumbe Basic School, where it took place.
Speaking during the cerebration Basic Education Teachers Union of Zambia, BETUZ, chairperson, Obby Phiri, said that unions are aware of government’s efforts in mitigating teachers’ challenges that directly affect delivery and implementation of government policies.
Breeze Staffer, Peter Sukwa reports that Mr. Phiri says unions also appreciate government’s commitment in reducing the teacher pupil ratio which stands out as one of the major challenges faced by most schools in rural areas.
He, however, stated that teachers hope that government shall consistently recruit more teachers.
Some beneficiaries of the Social Cash Transfer Scheme in Chipata have defied government’s directive to stop begging on the streets.
The beneficiaries who refused to be named told Breeze News that the money they are given is very little to sustain their lives.
They vowed that they will not stop begging on the streets until the government increases the amount of allowances being given to them under the Social Cash Transfer Scheme.
When reached for comment, District Social Welfare Officer Charity Phiri says that those who are still begging are just stubborn.
Mrs. Phiri says that a household which gets 240,000 Kwacha and 100 hundred thousand Kwacha per month can do a lot with the money than begging.
Mrs. Phiri says that some people, who are also on the scheme, are doing well and have started small businesses using the money.
Meanwhile the office of an officer at the district social welfare office that was locked by the Network for People Living with Disabilities has been reopened.
Acting Provincial Social Welfare Office, Cosmus Sikwibele confirmed to Breeze News that the issue was resolved.
The office was closed after the officer was accused of disrespecting people living with disabilities.
Villagers in most chiefdoms of Mambwe district are facing a serious problem of how to access safe drinking water.
This has been revealed by Mambwe District Commissioner, Janet Palukani to Breeze FM Staffer, Peter Sukwa who is in Mambwe.
Mrs. Pakulani says that most of the areas visited found that people are sharing drinking water sources with animals.
And Mrs. Pakulani is concerned with continued delay by FRA, the Food Reserve Agency to pay farmers who sold maize to the agency.
She says that more than half of the farmers who sold maize in Mambwe district have not been paid.
Mrs. Palukani says that this is despite FRA having promised that farmers would be paid on time.
Management at Chipata Cotton Company has dismissed reports that the company is about to be sold.
Managing Director, Ma told Breeze News this morning that the company has only changed the name from Chipata Cotton Company to China Africa Cotton Company.
Mr. Ma says that the company has decided to change its name because the previous name was not associated with the owners of the company.
He also indicated that the name had to be charged because of other businesspersons that have bought shares into the company.
Mr. Ma was responding to reports that the company was about to be sold to another cotton company operating in Eastern Province and that workers are not aware of this development.
But Mr. Ma has attributed this report, which he described as misleading, to the change in company name.
China Africa Cotton Company has employed more than three hundred workers.