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Workers in Zambia strike over cholera ‘risk allowance’ dispute

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Workers at National Heroes Stadium cholera centre in Lusaka yesterday downed their tools demanding for an increment in their risk allowances from the government.

The workers who abandoned the cholera patients alleged that they were paid only K50 ($5) each per day instead of the agreed K350 ($36).

The Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary Dr Kennedy Malama however dismissed the strike action saying the protesting workers were community workers who were engaged to participate in the cholera response at an agreed small allowance.

Dr Malama said the community workers’ request for an increment to what was originally agreed on is a misplaced request because an agreement was made at the beginning.

“Let me put it very categorical that all health workers under government who are working during this difficult time of the cholera response are on salary. But we have also been working very closely with the community members and those community members were informed that after working, periodically they will be given something small to say thank you as you know these are not government workers,” Dr Malama said.

Zambians on social media however questioned the government’s response to the workers concerns, pointing out that the government had allocated a lot of funds towards curbing the cholera outbreak and could surely afford to pay more than $4 to workers putting their lives at risk.

The government has recently been tasked by non-governmental organisations to give accountability for the funds used in the fight against cholera.

The funds include a K99 million expenditure figure released by the country’s treasury as money spent so far to curb the cholera outbreak.

Citizens and the civil society have also demanded for full disclosure of all the donations the government received from corporate companies and international partners including $419,000 from the Chinese government, embassy and enterprises.

The health minister, Dr. Chitafu Chilufya this week promised that a full statement ‘showing all the donations and expenditure items such as procurement of chemicals and payment of allowances to health workers’ will soon be released.

Dr Malama encouraged all those engaged in the cholera response to put the lives and health of the broader Zambians at the centre.

“And as government we would like to encourage all those who were engaged to participate in this response to put the lives and the health of the broader Zambians at the centre where some allowances are available as agreed, they will be given. But for health workers who are under government, its their responsibility to save life. When it comes on allowances, we ride on the agreed conditions,” said Dr Malama.

Zambia has been striving to contain a cholera outbreak that has claimed over 70 lives, with over 2000 cases recorded.

Crime

Kenyan Bishop Bags 75 Years Jail Term For Defiling Three Girls

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A bishop accused of defiling three girls he was living with at an orphanage, infecting one of them with HIV has now sentenced to 75 years in prison.



Kisumu Resident Magistrate Pauline Mbulika found him guilty of three counts of defilement and deliberate transmission of HIV.

Joseph Agutu had promised to sponsor the minors before he started defiling them.

Agutu who hid his face from the cameras as police escorted him out of the solitary cell to Kodiaga Maximum Prison, had maintained his innocence throughout the proceedings.

He was charged with committing the crime against the girls between April and July 2016. One of the girls is aged 14 while two are 15 years old.

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The court heard that the accused intentionally committed the crime and deliberately infected one of the minors with HIV.

The accused also reportedly touched the girls inappropriately on various dates between April and July 12, 2016. In addition, Agutu also faced an alternative charge of touching the private parts of the minors.

Four prosecution witnesses pointed an accusing finger to the Bishop with the minors recounting the sexual encounters that the man subjected them to.

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One of the minors who is an orphan painfully narrated to the court how the bishop lured her and her grandmother to the trap.

“My grandmother brought me to him and he promised to sponsor my education. My grandmother went back home and left me with him at the church,” said the minor.

After a while, she told the court, the bishop defiled her and called the other girl and defiled them too as she slept on the floor. She said they were crying throughout the ordeal.

The court heard that the following morning the bishop refused to allow them to go to school but instead ordered them to go to church.

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Crime

Sex in car in Nigeria public places not a crime – NPF

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The Nigeria Police has stated that having sex in a car in public places is not a crime.




The force through ACP Abayomi Shogunle who is in charge of Nigeria Police Public Complaint Response Unit (PPCRU) stated this on his official Twitter page.

According to Abayomi Shogunle, having sex in a car in a public place is not a crime.

He, however, stated conditions where the parties can be arrested for having sex in public place.

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He wrote: “NO. Sex in a car in a public place is not a crime in Nigeria provided; 1. Location is not a place of worship.

2. Parties are 18 yrs+

3. The act is consensual (agreed to by parties)

4. Parties are of the opposite sex if threatened with an arrest over above, please contact the police.”

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