Zambia’s first former First Lady Mama Betty Kaunda has died.
Mrs. Kaunda, 84, died in the early hours of today in neighbouring Zimbabwean capital Harare where she is reported to have been visiting her daughter.
ZANIS reports that her son Panji confirmed the death in an interview in Mpika today.
Colonel Kaunda, who is also Transport, Works, Supply and Communications deputy Minister, described the death of her mother as a loss to both the family and the country as a whole.
He said Mama Betty Kaunda has been battling with diabetes for the last 60 years.
Col. Kaunda said the family has been robbed of a mother was its pillar in all circumstances.
He recalled that during the liberation struggle Mama Betty was always with the family as his father, Zambia’s first Republican President Dr. Kenneth Kaunda was most of the time in and out of prisons.
Col. Kaunda said Mama Betty’s death should be celebrated by every Zambian because of her contribution during the liberation struggle.
He said Mama Betty was a perfect model of a First Lady and should be remembered as a mother.
Mama Betty Kaunda has left behind 7 children and a number of grand and great grand children.
Dr. Kaunda and other family members have since left for Zimbabwe to collect the body of the late former First Lady.
Mama Betty Kaunda was born on November, 17, 1928 at Mpika to Kaweche Banda and Milika Sakala Banda.
She went to school at Mbereshi Girls and also did training at the Mindolo Ecumenical Foundation’s Women’s programme and worked as a teacher in Mufulira.
Kenneth Kaunda the first President of Zambia married married Betty Banda in 1946.Mama Betty, was Zambia’s first lady from October 1964 to November 1991
She preferred to contribute quietly, mostly behind the scenes, to greatly support her family and nation and had been matron of many organisations and projects. She was considered the mother of the nation.