A Lusaka based Gynecologist Gertrude Shuma says at no time did the Zambia Medical Association ever state that the draft constitution should be rejected as purported by The Post Newspapers in their quest to discredit pro constitution advocates.
The Post Newspapers has been lining any individuals speaking ill against the new constitution including discredited Paramount Chief Mpezeni who is on the Patriotic Front payroll.
Dr Shuma said members of the Zambia Medical Association were shocked by the story in the PF propaganda wing The Post Newspaper saying they had opposed the clause in the draft constitution that prescribed that life began at conception.
She said the ZMA members were shocked that their president Aaron Mujajati was quoted as rejecting the draft constitution which had not even been released to the public.
“The story that indicated that the President for Zambia Medical Association has rejected the draft constitution based on article 28, which says that life begins at conception I must say that first of all the QUESTION IS WHICH DRAFT CONSTITUTION?” she said.
“Because we have not even received the draft constitution formally and many Doctors were actually shocked to see that article in The Post Newspapers because there was no prior discussion, there was no consensus.
“So we take it that submission was the author’s opinion and not ZMA and as far as submissions that the right to life begins at conception should be removed I cannot base it on the draft constitution which I have not been given and therefore my comments are based on my involvement in the constitution making process.”
She added: “The on-going advocacy to alter this article brings out concerns that if we protect the unborn child, we will not be able treat ectopic pregnancies, we will not be able to offer family planning or abortions to save mother’s lives or offer infertile fertilization for infertile women.”
Shuma said Zambians should defend whatever they submitted in the draft constitution and be ready for consensus.
“Zambians meant well to submit that life begins at conception it a healthy gift to Zambians which they have given themselves to preserve their children and future generations. It must not be taken away from them. The Zambians must now stand up and defend what they submitted. Life beginning at conception must be upheld and alternative measures must be found to solve the problems of a problematic pregnancy. We would like thank Kabimba for saying he will hand over the document in its raw form.”
The Post Newspapers has been latching on anything that discredits the constitution making process with their attempt to use the chiefs’ stance on the ownership of land exposed and they have since abandoned that lie.