THE African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) has awarded Zambia a medal for its efforts in eradicating malaria and reducing malaria-related deaths.
And President Sata has dedicated the continental award to the people of Zambia for their efforts in combating malaria.
The award was presented by the African Union (AU) immediate past chairperson Yayi Boni who is President of Benin during the closing ceremony of the AU 20th Ordinary Session summit on Monday night.
Zambia’s Ambassador to Ethiopia and the AU Francis Simenda received the award on behalf of President Sata at the high level ceremony which was also attended by UN secretary general Ban Ki Moon.
Others present were AU Commission chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalagne who is newly elected AU chairperson and several heads of state and dignitaries.
ALMA is a malaria project under the UN which helps African countries to combat malaria as one of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) whose target is set to be achieved by 2015.
Zambia is now regarded as a leader in malaria eradication and significant reduction in malaria related deaths on the continent.
And President Sata said in an interview here yesterday that the people of Zambia deserve the award because of their relentless efforts in fighting malaria, resulting in malaria deaths falling significantly.
“The award is for the people of Zambia who have worked so hard to fight malaria. It is their award and not Micheal Sata’s ,” Mr Sata said.
President Sata commended the ministries of Health and Community Development, Mother and Child Development for their interventions to fight the number one killer disease.
Meanwhile, President Sata has described the just ended AU summit which among other things discussed peace, security, trade and youth unemployment as a success.
“The summit went on very well without hitches and as you can see, all the ministers are happy,” President Sata said jokingly in reference to Minister of Justice Wynter Kabimba, Minister of Education John Phiri and Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Effron Lungu.
President Sata who is accompanied by First Lady Dr Christine Kaseba left Ethiopia yesterday around 16:00 hours local time (15:00 hours Zambian time).
Dr Kaseba was attending the Organisation of African First Ladies (OAFLA) meeting on the sidelines of the AU summit.
The OAFLA meeting also closed on Monday night.