Zambia Reports (Lusaka)

18 July 2014

Zambia: Dr Banda Reflects On Kazimu Sata's Accident

UPND Vice President Dr Canisius Banda says the accident of the son to President Michael Sata, Kazimu brings into focus the state of the country's roads and safety record.

Dr Banda who has wished Kazimu quick recovery hopes the country can step up the road situation in the country to reduce accidents:

Below is the full write up:

KAZIMU SATA'S ACCIDENT AND LESSONS TO BE LEARNT STATEMENT FROM DR CANISIUS BANDA

We learnt with shock and trepidation of the road traffic accident in which President Sata's son, Kazimu, and others were injured. This further highlights the nation's need to seriously observe and enhance road safety measures in our country in line with the World Health Organization [WHO] guidelines and recommendations.

Having been Zambia's focal point person on road safety at one time, I find this tragedy and many similar others that continue to maim and kill citizens on our roads most calamitous, sad and touching. Note that road traffic accidents are the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in developing countries like Zambia among youths ahead of malaria, TB and HIV/AIDS. Our nation must urgently, firmly and collectively respond to this brutal road use challenge.

Yet it is a national priority above the unplanned creation of districts, bloating of cabinet and inducement of by-elections. Zambia lacks appropriate lifesaving capacity for the required medical responses for Accidents and Emergency [A and E] is very sad and annoying indeed.

This reflects poorly on our governance record as a people. However, we are happy to learn that President Sata's son has been evacuated abroad for the safety of his life. We also pray and hope that this was purely a medical necessity and not a political decision.

That family members of the others who were also critically injured in the same accident but have not been evacuated are complaining and feel neglected by the State makes us wonder. Their complaints require investigating, a thorough medical audit given that if their relative's conditions are not better than that of Kazimu Sata, they also need to be evacuated immediately in order to save their lives. We in the UPND consider the lives of all citizens important, sacred and they all matter equally.

But perhaps the bigger lesson to learn from this unfortunate incident, is that much as we have had high profile persons in this country that have had to be medically evacuated, we have still not made any attempt at investing in our health system. This is an urgent matter that needs to be addressed by the PF so that those that are not privileged can equally access medical care of international acclaim.

We sincerely wish all the injured a quick recovery.

May God touch their lives and heal them all.

Even as we extol the Lord in everything, we are keenly aware and fully recognise that the responsibility for our safety is firmly in our hands as citizens.

Dr. Canisius Banda,

Vice President-UPND

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