Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary for Administration Dr Kennedy Malama has urged the public not to relax with their hygiene practices, saying the cholera epidemic is still prevailing in the country with new cases still being recorded.

Dr Malama said as at 06:00 hours on Monday a total of 34 new cases had been recorded in Lusaka.

“We are still in the cholera outbreak period. We would like to commend the multi sectoral response which has worked tirelessly for us to be where we are. As the minister of health has been updating the nation, we have continued seeing a downward trend in terms of new cases being recorded in Lusaka and also other parts of the country. This is commendable, but for you to say you have won the fight against cholera, you need at least two weeks to elapse without recording a new case,” Dr Malama said.

“For now we are very proud with all the interventions we have put in place. In the last 24 hours, as at 06:00 hours this morning, we had a total of 34 new cases in Lusaka. That also goes to demonstrate that indeed we are on a downward trend. Our call to our people is to ensure that we don’t relax with the interventions we have been putting in place. Other parts of the country it has been quiet but of course we are keeping a very close tab on Central Province and Eastern province where we still have patients who have been admitted and are being treated.”

And Dr Malama clarified that schools in epicentres of the outbreak outbreak would remain closed.

“In the epicentres where cholera has been reported, we have not opened the schools and we have worked very well with the Ministry of General Education and Higher Education. So for now, schools that are outside epicentres or areas where cholera is not active have gone ahead to open. But before they open its important that issues of water supply, sanitation, hygiene and the general environment is addressed,” said Dr Malama.