Government steps up efforts on good health

Government has provided 15 basic life support and four advanced support ambulances for hospitals in Eastern Province.

Eastern Province Permanent Secretary, Chanda Kasolo, said this during the commemoration of the National Health Week held on Tuesday in Chipata.

Mr. Kasolo says government is committed to promoting health and preventing diseases in local communities and the country at large.

He says the completion of 41 out of 51 prefabricated health posts being constructed in the province, is a clear indication that government is committed to providing health services to the people across the province.

Mr. Kasolo further says government has completed the construction of Nyimba District Hospital at a cost of 9.5 Million Kwacha.

Other hospitals, which are under construction in the province are Chipata District Hospital, Vubwi, Lundazi and Petauke district Hospitals.

This year’s National Health Week theme is “Promoting Wellness for All”.

K400,000 released for vaccination of 1 million chickens

Government has released 400 thousand Kwacha to Eastern Province for vaccination exercise of 1 million chickens against new castle disease.

Provincial Veterinary Officer, Author Mumbolomena told Breeze News that the province has also received 1 million doses of vaccines for new castle disease.

Dr. Mumbolomena says the money and doses were received last month and the bird vaccination exercise has advanced.

Dr. Mumbolomena says only Petauke district is still vaccinating the chickens while the other districts have concluded the exercise.

He says the response from farmers in all the districts has been overwhelming despite few misconceptions form some individuals who think their birds may die if vaccinated.

Dr. Mumbolomena says plans are underway to increase the target of vaccines following willingness by farmers to have their birds vaccinated.

He says the vaccination of bird’s against new castle disease has assisted in reducing Chicken mortalities in the province.

Chipata City Council maintains stance over bicycle levy

Chipata City Council has maintained that it will go ahead to implement the bicycle operators levy.

Director of Housing and Social Services Judith Maambo told Breeze News today that the local authority will go by resolutions agreed at the meeting with all stakeholders.

Ms. Maambo says as far as the local authority is concerned, the cyclists were legally represented by leaders from all wards of their association and there are documents indicating that the Association was legally existing.

She further says Bicycle Riders Association President Kenneth Simango was legally appointed leader adding that if they have squabbles among themselves it is not for the council to intervene.

Ms. Maambo says the local authority is now forming a task force which will be sent to start capturing data to know how many riders are there and identifying the bicycle ranks.

She says the council will authorize and designate bicycle ranks where levy will be collected.

Ms. Maambo says the meeting which was held on April 20th 2017 was attended by RTSA, RDA, Police, Bicycle Association leaders and the Council.

She was reacting to some cyclists who have vowed not to pay the 50 Kwacha annual levy until proper justification is made on who gave the local authority powers to reintroduce the levy, which was banned by late former president, Levy Patrick Mwanawasa.

Dishonest teachers told to stop

Teachers in Chipata district have been advised to be reporting to authorities any under or over payments in their salaries.

Zambia National Union of Teachers ZNUT district chairperson, Isaac Ngoma, says that it is incumbent upon teachers to report to authorities immediately they notice any anomalies on their pays lips.

He observed that in some instances, teachers only report when they observe underpayments, but sit back whenever they are overpaid, or draw allowances that are not due to them.

Mr. Ngoma says teachers should not wait until such anomalies are discovered, as this at times leads to devastating consequences such as recovery of such monies through deductions from salaries.

Mr. Ngoma’s comment follows deductions that about 20 teachers have suffered in Chipata district, after it was discovered that they have been drawing allowances that they were not supposed to.

He also advised head teachers to be open with their teachers and advise whenever they realize they are drawing allowances that they are not supposed to.

IMF policies worry ZNUT

The Zambia Congress of Trade Unions ZCTU, in Chipata has noted with concern that International Monetary Fund, IMF policies may have negative effects on workers in Zambia.

ZCTU Representative, Henry Kapenda says the decision by government to turn to IMF is frightening because their prescriptions can be painful especially on workers.

Mr. Kapenda was speaking yesterday during the commemoration of World Labour Day in Chipata.

He says the workers’ union will not accept any challenges that may arise to affect workers, stating that government must ensure that the conditions and rights of workers are protected when implementing IMF policies.

Mr. Kapenda also called on government to create more jobs for the people and ensure a descent working environment for the workers.

And Mr. Kapenda noted with concern the political tension perpetuated by political parties in Zambia.

He says the increasing levels of political tension have put the country on a knife edge resulting in the shift of focus from national developmental to political issues.

Mr. Kapenda urged political leaders from both the ruling and opposition parties to show leadership and respect the need for social dialogue for the sake of development in the nation.

And speaking at the same event, Zambia Federation of Employers ZFE Representative, Lyton Kanowa called on government to improve leakages that are weak in industries for value addition in order for the country’s economy to grow.