SYLVIA Masebo has advised Zambians to drink less alcohol and keep the greater City of Lusaka clean during the International Conference on Public Health in Africa which has attracted about 5, 000 delegates so that public order is enhanced.
The International Conference on Public Health will take place at the Kenneth Kaunda International Conference Centre from 27th November to the 30th November, 2023.
Ms Masebo, the Minister of Health says Lusaka residents, especially the youths, should not overindulge in drinking alcohol during the time when dignitaries will be in Lusaka so that there could be law and order.
“It is an opportunity for Zambians to think outside the box and think of what business they can do during this conference. Keep clean and drink less so that we can have law and order,” Ms Masebo said.
The Minister said this in response to a question from UPND Lukulu East MP Christopher Kalila who wanted to know if any special arrangements have been made for the delegates to visit Victoria Falls in Livingstone.
This was after Ms Masebo had issued a ministerial statement on the Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC Africa) organized conference which is the second largest gathering for medical experts, apart from that organized by the World Health Organization (WHO). Ms Masebo said there were a lot of tourist attractions in Lusaka such as the Kenneth Kaunda Chilenje House, the Kafue River, Parliament buildings and many others. She urged the private sector to jump on the opportunity and provide services in transportation, accommodation, and many others.
Ms Masebo stated that preparations for the conference were being undertaken by a multisectoral team drawn from 10 different ministries being coordinated by Cabinet Office.
She said the conference was in the interest of the country as it would market the country’s tourism industry and improve the economy.
“Lusaka stands to enjoy a global profile, growth in local employment, immediate and short-term economic benefits and long-term investments,” she said.
And Ms Masebo said had the new dawn administration has acquired new equipment at the Cancer Diseases Hospital instead of repairing them, stating that it could have been a different story had government decided to take the route of repairing the equipment. Ms Masebo said this after issuing another ministerial statement on why cancer patients were being referred to Tanzania for treatment.
The minister said the current diagnostic and radiation treatment machines which were installed by Siemens in 2006 had become obsolete with no spare parts on the international market and rendering them non-functional.
She said about 40,000 cancer patients had so far received treatment at the hospital.
“The machines were supposed to be replaced between 2016 and 2019 but it was not implemented. Currently nearly 500 patients are waiting to receive radiotherapy and Tanzania has agreed to assist at its Ocean Road Cancer Institute in Dar-es- Salaam,” Ms Masebo said.