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President Rupiah Banda says the depreciation of the Kwacha against other major foreign currencies is due to the many challenges that Zambia is facing. Mr. Banda has also attributed the depreciation of the local currency to the plummeting copper prices on the world market.
The President says it is unfortunate that copper prices have fallen from about $8-thousand per tone to well over $3-Thousand four hundred per tone. Mr. Banda was speaking at the Lusaka International airport Thursday night shortly after arrival from Abuja, Nigeria where he had gone for a two day official visit.
The President arrived at 21:30 hrs aboard the Presidential challenger Jet.
He was received by Vice President George Kunda, Defense Chiefs, Cabinet Ministers, Senior Government and MMD officials. While in Nigeria, President Banda held closed door discussions with his Nigerian counterpart, Umaru Musa Yar’ Adua.
Meanwhile, the Zambian Ministry of health says a cordon has been constructed at the Livingstone border to screen people for signs of cholera before entering and leaving Zambia for Zimbabwe. The measure is in response to a serious outbreak of Cholera in Zimbabwe which has claimed over 3-hundred lives in that country.
Ministry spokesperson Canicius Banda says the measures have been put in place to prevent the spread of the disease in Zambia which borders Zimbabwe. Dr. Banda said since the announcement of the outbreak of the disease in Zimbabwe, there are no cases reported in Zambia that might have come from that country.
He said health workers are on alert and ready to treat any case of the disease regardless of a person’s nationality. The Ministry spokesperson also said there are epidemic preparedness committees which are funded every month to conduct sensitization programs in communities.