The family of late Founding President Dr Kenneth Kaunda is today expected to send a Protest Letter to government over its decision to move Dr Kaunda’s body across the country.
Sources close to the family have revealed that the Kaunda’s are not happy that government did not consult the family before announcing the entire programme.
The sources said the family is opposed to the idea of the countrywide tour of the body and will tell government to respect its wishes.
The family is also upset that government wants to bury Dr Kaunda at Embassy Park contrary to his wish that he be buried next to his wife, Betty at State Lodge.
“The country tour is not the idea of the family and government did not also consult them on burying at Embassy Park. So the family will today send Secretary to the Cabinet Simon Miti a Protest Letter demanding that they honor KK’S wish to be buried next to his wife,” the source said.
And Democratic Party leader Harry Kalaba has written an Open Letter to President Edgar Lungu advising him to reconsider the decision to fly the body all over the country.
“We have been informed by the Vice President of your governments intention to take the remains of our dear departed First Republican President Dr. Kenneth David Kaunda to the 10 Provinces as a means of providing an opportunity to everyone to pay their last respect. This funeral has hit the country at the very core by robbing us of a gallant soldier and son of the continent that deserves the highest honor in as much as mourning him is concerned,” the letter read.
“It is for this reason that my party, the Democratic Party (DP) has suspended its campaigns and joined the rest of the country in observance of the 21 Day National Mourning that you declared. Notwithstanding the gravitas of the demise of Dr. Kaunda, I am writing to express our concern as the DP to allow the remains of Dr. Kaunda to be taken to all the 10 Provinces.”
“The processions will be turned into Covid-19 super spreader events as people will want to view the body or at least want to get as close as possible to the hearse. The country as you may know is battling with limited resources in the Health Sector and taking the cottage across the 10 Provinces will increase the resource burden for the country which will lead to a further strain on our already ailing medical facilities. If as advised by the Vice President that body viewing will be done on television across the 10 Provinces, we do not see the relevance of sending men and women in uniform across the 10 Provinces just so people can follow deliberations on Television,” it read.
“We have in the last few weeks seen a lot of our loved ones succumb to the ravaging effect of Covid-19 and the guidance from Health Authorities is that we reduce movements, practice social distance and by all means mask up when in public. The current economic hardships we are going through as citizens makes it hard for people to follow through with these protocols as some people can hardly afford a mask let alone to keep away from someone who they feel can give them even as little as K10.”
“With an incubation period of 5 days, it is more than likely that some people who may be affected during the countrywide tours your government is planning to have may end up dying on or by the 7th of July thereby missing the opportunity of watching their beloved KK being interred.”
“In view of the above, I am requesting that you reconsider your decision of taking our late Presidents remains countrywide in the interest of saving lives as well as to preserve the little resources left in our coffers. I humbly request that you spend the funds you intend to move the cottage around the country to procure more Oxygen which our hospitals badly need. I know that President Kaunda would not have wanted the people of Zambia to be sacrificed at the table of political and electoral expedience. It is my prayer that you will do the right thing as Republican President and Commander in Chief by changing the program with the removal of the provincial visits so as to save lives. As ever, I remain at the service of the people of Zambia.”