MINISTER of Information and Media Chushi Kasanda has called on well-wishers to come on board and help restore United Voice Radio, which was recently gutted.
Speaking after touring the premises, Wednesday, Kasanda said it was disheartening to see the extent of the damage.
“Having gone round to see what happened, it is disheartening to see how the place was gutted. And I would like to sincerely convey to the people of UCZ, the nation at large, our solidarity for what has just happened. Indeed it is something that was not expected and the reason for the fire has not been established yet. So my appeal to the people of Zambia, my appeal to the well-wishers is that may they come on board and help this institution, help this church to get back to where they were. As we have seen inside there, the only thing they were able to pick up from there was a bible and a piano. Besides that, the place has been gutted completely and it is only our wish and hope that the people of Zambia will come to their aid,” Kasanda said.
When asked if government would offer financial support, Kasanda said it would be difficult to speak on government’s behalf because the budget wasn’t released yet.
She, however, said she would offer help in her individual capacity.
“In my individual capacity, yes, they will definitely get support from me. I would not want to be specific as to what I would be able to help out with. What I need to establish is what exactly was gutted, and what the institution would like me to help them with and then I will get back to you. From the government, I would not say much about the government right now. And the reason I will not speak about the government is because we have not released our budget yet and therefore it will be very difficult to speak on behalf of the government at the moment until we release our budget,” said Kasanda.
Meanwhile, United Voice Radio board chairperson Dr Lordwell Siame thanked Kasanda for her visit.
“We are really grateful on behalf of the United Church of Zambia as a whole and Lusaka Presbytery for your support and the care that you have shown. You have shown that indeed you are a parent because a person that can come through for you at a time such as this one, you will know that this is a true friend. As UCZ, we would like to congratulate you and your government and also look forward to the support that we can receive from well-wishers. And for your personal contribution that you intend to bring to this station. We are really grateful. In terms of the whole investment we have put here, I may not be very sure because what we have seen gutted here is just part of the internal materials that we are using in terms of equipment. You know broadcasting of this nature has also external equipment that go with this, so I may not be in the position to quantify how much we have lost. But it’s a colossal amount of money,” said Dr Siame.