from ARNOLD MULENGA in Lusaka, Zambia
LUSAKA, (CAJ News) – ZAMBIA’s capital, Lusaka, plans to procure alternative land for burials as it experiences a surge in deaths worsened by the resurgent coronavirus (COVID-19).
Officials from the Lusaka City Council (LCC) confirmed the escalation of deaths, with the authority issuing 610 burial permits in the past week.
Christopher Mtonga, the LCC Public Health Director, attributed this to the COVID- 19 wave.
The authority is considering speeding up process of burials to curb infections.
“This should be done in the quest for sanity and to reduce the spread of COVID-19 at the burial permit issuance office or at the cemetery due to overcrowding,” Mtonga said.
LCC has deployed council police and health inspectors to help regulate crowds at local cemeteries.
Mtonga said the council was in negotiations with neighboring districts to help secure land for burials.
This follows the council’s decision to procure alternative land.
Zambia has confirmed 133 659 cases of COVID-19, including 1 744 deaths.
This is the tenth-worst outbreak in Africa, in terms of reported cases.
The surge has impacted on preparations for the August 12 elections, rallies banned.
– CAJ News