UPND president Hakainde Hichilema on Saturday visited some cholera centres in order to understand the gravity of the epidemic.

In a statement yesterday, Hichilema stated that he had encouraged cholera victims to remain strong.

“Yesterday (Saturday), we visited selected Cholera centres in Lusaka to see for ourselves the devastation and ravages of this outbreak. With our party Vice President, Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba, National Chairperson, Mrs Mutale Nalumango, party Deputy Secretary General, Patrick Mucheleka, party Chairperson for Mobilisation, Ms Sylvia Masebo and other party officials we among other centres visited the Kanyama cholera centre. We saw patients and their relatives whom we wished quick recoveries and encouraged to remain hopeful of better tomorrow,” Hichilema stated.

“At the same time, we appreciated the health personnel who are working round the clock at the frontline of combatting the disease.”

He noted that cholera would have been prevented if government took heed to warning signs.

“However, we want to reiterate that had those claiming leadership of our country taken heed to our advice on the need for quality public health care, we were not going to be needlessly losing lives today. Cholera is a preventable disease and we all saw it coming, but there was no political will to tackle the outbreak quickly. We are certain that funds meant for public health were made available much earlier in 2017 but due to corruption, funds were misappropriated and misapplied to areas not in the interest of our citizens,” stated Hichilema.

“When in government, we will listen more to our people and act in their best interest while fighting corruption using our zero-tolerance to corruption policy. Quality public health will be one of our pillars in ensuring a healthy and productive population. Only then will we be able to walk with our heads up that we are moving Zambia forward.”