9 October 2018

Zambia: Unza Mourns Student

Photo: Unza
University of Zambia library (file photo).

Students, lecturers and other staff yesterday marched from University of Zambia (UNZA) main campus to the Seventh Day Adventist Church on Katima Mulilo Road before a church service for the UNZA student who died last week.

And another student who sustained a spine injury after she jumped from her room because of the fire was scheduled to be evacuated to South Africa yesterday.

Vespers Shimuzhila , a fourth year UNZA student in the school of education suffocated in her room because of a fire during the students' riots on Thursday night.

Clad in black attire, the students sang solemn songs in honour of Ms Shimuzhila, 25, before attending the church service.

During the service also attended by Chief Government Spokesperson Dora Siliya, UNZA vice-chancellor Luke Mumba said the death of Ms Shimuzhila had left a dent on the institution that could not be

justified and the university would put in place measures to ensure security for the students.

Professor Mumba appealed to students, lectures and all workers to live in peace and ensure that UNZA remains a symbol of the nation irrespective of the differences.

"To the students society supports and looks up to you, please appreciate the social support and in your time positively pay back, how I wish we could honour the contract we have with society and in Vespers memory let us be the light that we wish to see in society," Prof Mumba said.

The deceased best friend Vista Chinda described her friend as an intelligent person who was resolute and focused.

Non-Governmental Gender Organisation Coordinating Council (NGOCC) executive director Ngwase Mwale told journalists that Government should come up with mechanisms of talking with students to help amicably resolve issues.

Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA) national president Lucy Lungu said justice should prevail to avoid such being repeated, because there were a lot of similar incidences where lives were lost, but the public did not know the outcome.

United Party for National Development leader Hakainde Hichilema said it was unfortunate that a young life was lost because some people were irresponsible like the police who handled the riots on Thursday night at the campus.

And the second year student Everntyn Choongo who suffered a spine injury after she jumped from her room because of the fire was scheduled to be evacuated yesterday to South Africa.

University Teaching Hospital (UTH) superintendent Clarence Chiluba said in an interview the process had slightly delayed because of the processes involved like getting the patient a passport.

Meanwhile, the Law Association of Zambia has condemned police action of raiding the Great East Road Campus on Thursday night into Friday morning.

LAZ said that it did not support unlawful action by students, but condemned the use of teargas in students' rooms.

The association said that it expected Government and the Inspector General of Police Kakoma Kanganja to ensure that justice was served.

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