Parliament's Presiding Officers, led by the Speaker of the National Assembly, Ms Thandi Modise, and Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces, Mr Amos Masondo, have learnt with deep sadness of the death of Zambia's former President Dr Kenneth Kaunda.
Dr Kenneth Kaunda, a struggle liberation icon, was the inaugural president of Zambia between 1964 and 1991 after the country gained independence from Britain.
"Today, we bow our heads in honour to the gallant son of Africa, the founding father of democratic Zambia and one of the last of his generation of African liberation leaders. He was an uncompromising African nationalist, an outspoken critic of the apartheid regime. We owe our freedom and liberation to his selfless leadership. As a seasoned African leader, he firmly believed that Zambia's freedom was meaningless if her neighbours were not free", said the Presiding Officers.
During his reign, Zambia became home to several freedom figures in the Southern Africa region, who later became presidents and leaders in their own countries. For 30 years, Lusaka was also the headquarters of the African National Congress.
"With the passing on of Dr Kenneth Kaunda, Africa has been robbed of an outstanding, courageous and highly principled patriot who loved Africa and her people with all his heart. His vision for a free and united Africa transcended beyond his birth country. He played a critical mediation role in the freedom of fellow founding democratic President, President Nelson Mandela. His humility, exemplary leadership is worth emulation. We will always remember him as a leader who stood with the people of Africa", added the Presiding Officers.
We will never forget his immense contribution and role for a united Africa. We will forever be indebted to the sacrifice of such legendary leaders whose greatness continue to inspire Africa and the world.
Parliament sends its heartfelt condolences to his children, family and the Zambian community. May the soul of Dr Kaunda find eternal rest.