TEDDY KUYELA, Lusaka
THE labour movement has described the death of former Secretary to the Cabinet Joshua Kanganja as shocking and a great loss to the nation.
Mr Kanganja died at the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) on Thursday at the age of 67.
Leaders of the Civil Servants and Allied Workers Union of Zambia (CSAWUZ), Zambia Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) and Secondary School Teachers Union of Zambia (SSTUZ) said in separate interviews in Lusaka yesterday that they are saddened by the death of Dr Kanganja.
They said he contributed greatly to the development of the country.
CSAWUZ president Davy Chiyobe expressed sadness that the nation has lost a gallant leader who brought a lot of change to the countryâ€™s public service.
â€œDr Kanganja brought a lot of change to the public service. This man we are mourning today brought a lot of transformation to the public service and he was a resilient man,â€ Mr Chiyobe said.
ZCTU secretary-general Cosmas Mukuka said Dr Kanganja worked hard in improving the conditions of service for the public service workers.
He said Dr Kanganja will be remembered for the effective role he played in the collective bargaining for the public service workers when he was still serving as Secretary to the Cabinet.
â€œIt is a big loss for Zambia to lose people such as Dr Kanganja with pregnant minds which could have been a reservoir of knowledge base.
â€œThis very disturbing news of his death has cast a dark cloud over the nation,â€ Mr Mukuka said.
He said Dr Kanganja was quite key in the interpretation of human resource issues.
Mr Mukuka said Dr Kanganja was a â€œbig manâ€ who also contributed a lot to the legal fraternity and the human resource in the public service when he served as permanent secretary at the Public Service Management Division at Cabinet.
â€œHe understood well the operation of the public service and he had vast experience being former lecturer in the School of Law at the University of Zambia and a human resource practitioner at the Public Service Management Division.
â€œDr Kanganja was an asset to Zambia because he was also a director at the Zambia Institute of Advanced Legal Education,â€ he said.
And Secondary School Teachers Union of Zambia (SSTUZ) deputy director Emmanuel Zulu described the death of Dr Kanganja as very sad.
Mr Zulu said SSTUZ will remember Dr Kanganja for his hard work, openness and dedication to duty, especially when he worked at the PSMD.
â€œThe death of Dr Kanganja is very sad news. We worked well with him as permanent secretary at PSMD. He used to lead well the negotiations between our union and the government,â€ he said.
Mr Zulu said his union would also remember Dr Kanganja for the important role he played in ensuring the conditions of service for SSTUZ members were improved.
â€œIt was in Dr Kanganjaâ€™s reign when we created a separate salary scale for members, it was during his reign that we witnessed a number of progressive policies aimed at addressing the welfare of workersâ€¦this was achieved because Dr Kanganja understood the desires of workers and how the public service operates,â€ he said.
Mr Zulu has since urged the youth to emulate the deceasedâ€™s unwavering desire to work hard and contribute positively to improving the welfare of other citizens.
And the North-Western Development Council of Elders (NWDCE) says it has received the death of Dr Kanganja with shock, BUTTYSON KANDIMBA reports from Solwezi.
The council of elders has appealed to the government to facilitate the transportation of the body to Ikelengâ€™i so that he could be buried in his home village.
Council of Elders chairperson Lucas Chikoti said the death of Dr
Kanganja is a blow not only to the people in the province but the country as a whole.
Mr Chikoti said Dr Kanganja was among the few prominent people from the province who served the nation diligently in senior Government portfolios.
â€œThe passing on of Dr Kanganja is a blow to the people of North-Western Province because these were the most prominent people of this province who held very high positions in Government and he was very helpful to the people of this province,â€ he said yesterday.
TEDDY KUYELA, Lusaka