ZESCO spokesperson Henry Kapata (right) talks to a client at his firm's pavilion yesterday during the ongoing eighth Southern Tourism, Agricultural and Commercial Show Society (STACSS) in Livingstone
ZESCO spokesperson Henry Kapata (right) talks to a client at his
firm’s pavilion yesterday during the ongoing eighth Southern Tourism,
Agricultural and Commercial Show Society (STACSS) in Livingstone

ZESCO has refuted claims by some members of the public and online publications that a number of babies died at the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) after the countrywide blackout on Thursday last week.

Both Zesco spokesperson Henry Kapata and UTH public relations manager, Mwenya Mulenga confirmed in separate interviews in Lusaka yesterday. Mr Kapata said it was not true that prematurely-born babies died at UTH after the countrywide power blackout.

On Thursday, due to a system disturbance that was caused by a tripping of a power line at Kariba North Bank Power Station around 23:00 hours, eight provinces suffered a blackout while two remained powered as the Victoria Falls Station continued supplying electricity.

On Friday, word went round, however, that babies born prematurely at UTH that depended on electricity-powered incubators died due to the power outage. “Contrary to online reports that some deaths were recorded at UTH, prematurely-born babies were not affected,” Mr Kapata said. He said this was because UTH quickly moved to alternative generators when the country experienced a power outage.

No patient lost their lives at the D Block for prematurely-born babies or the maternity ward. Mr Kapata said he was impressed that sensitive institutions like UTH had heeded the power company’s advice to have alternative power despite being exempted from load-shedding. He said Zesco encouraged sensitive institutions that despite exemptions from load-shedding, they should invest in alternative power sources.

Mr Kapata urged the sensitive institutions to test their generators constantly and not just in times of power outages. The UTH spokesperson said that no deaths were recorded because the UTH power generators automatically switched on whenever there was a power disruption. “It is not possible that we did not have power. The generator switches on automatically and we did not record any deaths due to the power outage. Those are false reports,” he said.

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5 COMMENTS

  1. These PF, now ZESCO is incharge of UTH and its babies too? Does that PF have any Ministry of Health, what is his fhaking name?

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  2. Kapata i appreciate zesco s effort but how much has zesco done to remove anti govt or anti pf from zesco including u as a known suspect. We say thankx but some workers engineers play arround with tech skills to show pipo, govt is doing NOTHING while its doing better than rsa,nigeria,ghana,kenya, etc remove politics/tribalism from zesco. For a bemba to get connected in choma,monze,solwezi they are made to bribe there way or it will take 4 yrs. They check on photo copies of nrc and shelve the papers or same area same pole one pays k150 and another will pay k2890. Zesco is keeping thieves/corrupt technical chaps. Storry is endless

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  3. I cannot believe u kapata bcos u behave like upnd who oppose everything from pf/govt u ve never accepted any wrong done by zesco u are a suspect. Power went three times in heroes stadium in presence of our president upto now u dont feel guilt of wrong/shame u pretend all is low water levels.we expect pipo to be fired to instal order in zesco. Nabapwa umwenso workers can do anything bcos of water levels in kariba nonsense fire these chaps let them wait for upnd.

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  4. If nobody died, you should provide an independent report from a third party to validate your claim. Otherwise only fools will believe your claim especially in Zambia where our hospitals are a killing field.

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