Goodmorning fellow country men and women!
This morning when I woke up from my hospital bed, my wife drew my attention to a statement which was purportedly issued by the Zambian High Commission in Pretoria, South Africa, where it was claimed that the Zambian Government’s arrangements to evacuate me for specialist medical treatment have reached an advanced stage.
From the onset,I must inform the nation that my family has not been consulted and is therefore, not aware of such plans as they have just learnt about the same through the usual online stories that are taking rounds on the internet. That said, I must state that in the absence of official government procedures and communication in handling evacuations, I’m restrained to give a comprehensive response regarding the same because from what I know the Ministry of Health or any senior official from the government should have been the first ones to contact my family before any statement is issued especially by the mission in Pretoria.
However, based on what’s being propagated online by our mission in Pretoria, though physically weak and in hospital as you all know, I’m compelled to respond to enable the public appreciate my unfortunate circumstances.
Firstly, it shocks me to see that today, the Zambian government is indicating that they want to evacuate me when only yesterday, numerous attempts where made by state operatives and their surrogates to forcefully remove me from my preferred medical facility and take me to an unknown destination against my medical team’s advice.
Secondly, when I returned from treatment from the same place where they claim they want to take me today, I was unlawfully detained at Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe Airport in Ndola despite my numerous pleas that was not in the best of health. I informed the state operatives involved in that specific operation that I was coming from treatment and therefore required some time to recover in order for me to respond to their concerns but they wouldn’t have any of it. They proceeded to execute their plans and that’s how I ended up being detained at Lusaka’s Woodlands Police station the following day, after which my condition deteriorated rapidly resulting in me being where I am today – laying helplessly in a hospital bed.
Against this cruel background, I’m left to wonder and ask myself as to what has changed now? Why is the Zambian government all of a sudden eager to “save” my life which they have recklessly risked so much for the past three days? How can I entrust my medical condition and wellbeing by surrendering myself in the hands of such people who have showed nothing but total disregard and respect for my condition, rights and family insofar as my present circumstance is concerned?
Nonetheless, I’m grateful to my brother, President Edgar Lungu for this gesture as reported by the mission in Pretoria but seeing that there is a long waiting-list of more deserving and poor Zambians that need specialist treatment abroad. I propose that the poor Zambians on the waiting-list be considered first. My life is just as important as that of the suffering majority on the waiting-list hence my decision to let allow the government to prioritize the poor people and not me. Let the resources that were meant to be spent on my treatment be channeled to my suffering brothers and sisters that have been waiting to be evacuated to India and South Africa for years on end. As for me, I’m only pleading for state clearance not finance since well wishers have already offered to fund my trip for specialist treatment to South Africa.
Lastly, I wish to express my gratitude for the prayers and support my family and I have received from Zambians from all walks of life during this period of pain and anguish. I’m eternally grateful. God bless Zambia!
Issued by: The office of Hon. Dr. Chishimba Kambwili