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The United Party for National Development (UPND) in the Copperbelt province yesterday held a memorial service for the late party youth leader Ronald Manenga and his deputy Gerald Ngoma who died in January last year.

 The two died in a road traffic accident along the Ndola-Kitwe dual carriageway on January 3, 2021 as they were returning to Kitwe from a meeting in Ndola.

Copperbelt UPND chairperson, Elisha Matambo described the two deceased party officials as courageous and hardworking young men who stood for the party when it was not fashionable to belong to the UPND, especially in that region of the country.

Speaking during the joint memorial service at Maranatha Pentecostal Church in Kitwe, Mr. Matambo, who is also Copperbelt Province Minister, said the late Mr. Manenga and Mr. Ngoma were great pillars of the party’s youth league whose death shook the entire UPND.

He said the two deceased youth leaders fought for the liberation of the country at a difficult time when the situation in the province was volatile.

“Their death shook the entire UPND in the country. It was a very difficult time as we did not know where to start from but the youths were strong and managed to re-organise themselves and worked until we got the victory. It is unfortunate that we couldn’t make it with them,” Mr. Matambo lamented.

He said the death of his youth leaders is something that still pains him as he has always stopped at the accident scene and questioned what exactly transpired on the material day.

Mr. Matambo has since assured the families that the party will continue to support them.

And Minister of Youth, Child and Sport, Elvis Nkandu, said the two youth leaders greatly contributed to the liberation of the country

Mr. Nkandu said the two fought for the freedom of speech and assembly which the Zambian people are now enjoying.

Earlier, UPND national youth chairperson, Gilbert Liswaniso, called on the party officials to support the families of the late two party leaders.

“It is our responsibility as party members to reach out to the families of those that died during the struggle,” Mr. Liswaniso said.

He also called for maintenance of peace and unity in the country saying this is the best way to honour the late Mr. Manenga and Mr. Ngoma.

And Maranatha Bishop-In-Charge, Gate Simuusa, said the works of the departed leaders were still alive in people’s memories.

Bishop Simuusa comforted the families of the deceased by assuring them that they will once again reunite with their beloved ones when the Lord comes to get His own.

The memorial service was attended by several UPND national, Copperbelt provincial and district leaders and hundreds of other UPND members. -ZANIS

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