Zambia: 'Step Up Fight Against Alcohol Abuse Among Juveniles'

THE Ndola City Council (NCC) has called for community partnership in the fight against alcohol abuse among the under-age. Last week an 18-year-old girl identified as Sylvia Chanda of Ndola's Chifubu Township died at Ndola Central Hospital from suspected excessive intake of alcohol.

NCC public relations manager Roy Kuseka said the local authority was saddened with the death of the teenager and called for partnership with communities and the bar owners. Mr Kuseka said apart from enforcing the law, it was important for the community to be involved in the fight against alcohol abuse.

"Society should change the mindset and take up the responsibility and should not always wait on the council," he said. He appealed to nightclub, bar and tavern proprietors to heed to the rules of not allowing underage patrons in their respective premises. And Young Women Christian Association (YWCA) expressed sadness on the death of the teen and called on alcohol traders to stick to the rules of not allowing underage in their premises.

YWCA Copperbelt regional coordinator Sharon Chisanga said the children's rights should be protected, hence the need to ensure that alcohol was not sold to them. Ndola Liquor Traders Association has called on the traders to stop the selling alcohol in open places.

Association chairperson Paul Ngosa said alcohol was being sold openly and some of the places were not even legalised to trade in alcohol. "It's unfortunate that there was loss of life but the selling of alcohol in open places should be stopped to avoid more losses of lives in future," he said.

The deceased was put to rest a week ago but the family refused the doctor's advice for a postmortem to determine the cause of death.

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