First Lady Esther Lungu has thanked the people of Eastern province for voting for President Edgar Lungu in the January 20 Presidential elections.
Mrs Lungu knelt before a jubilant and ululating crowd at Chiwuyu in Sinda District where she had gone to hold meetings with the people there.
The First Lady is in eastern province on an outreach programme of assessing women empowerment programmes and to seek ways of assisting vulnerable children and the aged in society.
Headman Kabuula said it was unprecedented for a First Lady to visit the area and even kneel to people to thank them for their support.
Mrs Lungu also donated mealie meal, beverages and some money to the elderly in the area.
Earlier, Chieftainess Nyanje of the Nsenga speaking people of Sinda District appealed to government to send relief food to the area to avert the looming hunger in the district.
Chieftainess Nyanje said the district had been adversely affected by the irregular weather pattern which has caused crop failure and drying up of boreholes.
She told First Lady Esther Lungu when she paid a courtesy call on her at Nyanje Palace that people will not have enough yields.
And the First Lady said government is committed to ensuring that it provides adequate food to people so that they don’t starve.
Mrs Lungu told Chieftainess Nyanje that she was in the district to thank the people for voting for President Edgar Lungu and to also assess women empowerment programmes in the area.
The First Lady also toured Njanje Mission Hospital and visited patients at the health facility which is acting as the District Hospital following the creation of Sinda as a new district.
Mrs Lungu paid glowing tribute to health staff at the mission hospital for working under extreme conditions to provide health care services to people in Sinda District and surrounding areas.
The First Lady commended Sable Transport for coming to the aid of the hospital and called for increased corporate social responsibility from the private sector.
Mrs Lungu later donated bags of mealie meal and beverages to patients at the health institution.
And Hospital Superintendent Eric Mpoyi told the First Lady that the health facility is facing accommodation challenges following its upgrade to a district hospital status.
Dr Mpoyi said the hospital’s catchment area has doubled from 80,000 to 168, 000 people with the majority and critical patients coming from Mozambique.
He said the hospital structure is old and has inadequate equipment to meet and service the growing number of people seeking medical services.
Dr Mpoyi disclosed that the hospital conducts over 100 deliveries on a monthly basis and that malaria and malnutrition are the leading cases that the hospital handles.
And Mrs Lungu later addressed women clubs in the district to explore ways of empowering them in order to improve their welfare through viable income generating ventures.
She emphasized the importance of strong family values and the need to scale up the fight against early marriages and defilement.
The First Lady appealed to Zambians to desist from stigmatizing disabled people but embrace them and other vulnerable segments of society like orphans.
Mrs Lungu later donated K10,000 to the women clubs to engage in viable income generating ventures to sustain their livelihoods and families.