Lusaka – Leading public figures from across Africa have sent get well messages to Dr Kenneth Kaunda after Zambia’s Founding President was this week hospitalised for pneumonia-related reasons.
Dr Kaunda (97) is one of the last surviving icons of the liberation struggle.
His spokesperson, Mr Rodrick Ngolo, on Monday said Dr Kaunda had been hospitalised, and reports later emerged that he had been having problems with pneumonia for some time.
African Union chairperson Mr Moussa Faki Mahamat sent a message wishing Dr Kaunda a quick recovery. He noted that Dr Kaunda was the only remaining founding leader of the Organisation of African Unity, the forerunner to the African Union.
Mr Mahamat recounted how at this year’s Africa Day, the AU had unveiled a special award to Dr Kaunda for his vast contributions to the liberation of the continent.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa also extended a get well message to Dr Kaunda, adding that he and the people of South Africa were praying for the good health of the liberation icon.
The fourth president of Zambia, Dr Rupiah Banda, described Dr Kaunda as “a national treasure” and called on all Zambians to pray for his quick recovery.
“I also wish the Kaunda family God’s guidance so that they can go through this trying period in unity and equanimity.”
On Monday, Zambian President Edgar Lungu led the messages of goodwill soon after Dr Kaunda’s hospitalisation had been made public.
“On behalf of the Government of the Republic of Zambia, the people of Zambia and indeed on my own behalf, I wish to convey best wishes and a speedy recovery to Dr. Kaunda. We pray for God’s intervention in his health,” President Lungu said.President Lungu said his government was doing all it could to ensure Dr Kaunda received the best available medical care and attention.