THE University of Zambia (UNZA) has constituted a team of experts that include Medicinal Chemists, Drug Discovery Scientists, Virologists, Botanists, Pharmacologists and Pathologists to help in the discovery of home-grown low cost cures for the COVID-19 pandemic.
The consortium of experts will be exploring Zambian traditional medicines/plants and clinically-established drugs in the Zambian Formulary as potential treatments for COVID-19.
The team comprises Dr James Nyirenda (the lead investigator), Dr Peter Mubanga Cheuka, Dr Edgar Simulundu, Dr Angela Gono-Bwalya, Dr Takondwa Chidumayo, Dr Katendi Changula, Dr Caroline Chisenga, Dr Wezi Kachinda and Mr Kelly Chisanga.
The team’s core mandate is twofold; firstly, to discover and develop medicines that are readily available for the local population and secondly, to discover and develop local medicines optimized for effectiveness and safety on an African or local population.
Meanwhile, the consortium of experts has since received funding from the Ministry of Higher Education through the National Science and Technology Council (NSTC). The funding received will be used to kickstart the project.
And University of Zambia (UNZA) Acting Vice Chancellor Dr. Tamala Kambikambi has paid glowing tribute to the consortium of researchers championing the discovery and development of the anti-COVID 19 pandemic drug. Dr. Kambikambi says UNZA’s research undertaking will solve the problems exacerbated by the unavailability of medicines discovered and developed elsewhere on the African continent. She adds that Zambia has lagged behind in the area of drug discovery and development since independence hence the urgent need for UNZA to take a lead.
The Acting VC has also expressed gratitude to the National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) through the Ministry of Higher Education for the funds received to kickstart the project.
This is according to a press statement issued by Dr. Brenda Bukowa, Acting Head- Communication and Marketing at the University of Zambia.
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A former ZRA accounts assistant slapped three years imprisonment for stealing over K170,000
THE Economic and Financial Crimes Court has convicted and sentenced a former Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) accounts assistant, Sami Sami to three years imprisonment with hard labour.
Magistrate Faides Hamaundu entered a statutory judgment and ordered the convict Sami to pay Zambia Revenue Authority the money that he had stolen.
Sami aged 43 was convicted on 18 counts of the offence of Theft by Public Servant contrary to section 277 of the Penal Code Chapter 87 of the Laws of Zambia.
The court heard that Sami an account assistant at ZRA on dates unknown but between the 16th day of August 2018 and the 31st day of July,2019, being a person employed in the Public Service namely ZRA stole K174,566.59 cash which came into his possession by virtue of his employment.
And ZRA has sternly warned its members of staff that there are no sacred cows as any officers found wanting will be prosecuted to the fullest extent permitted by law.
(Mwebantu, Wednesday, 25th January, 2023)
ZRA dismisses fake social recruitment post.
THE Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) has dismissed reports circulating on social media platforms purporting that the authority has advertised for jobs.
ZRA Corporate Communications Manager Oliver Nzala said the social media reports are fake adding the general public should not be duped by unscrupulous people who are forging and coming up with fake ZRA documents in order to swindle unsuspecting people.
Mr Nzala said the fake recruitment adverts are a concern to the authority because some members of the public who are desperate for employment get swindled.
He urged the public to be on high alert concerning the scam, saying the unscrupulous people should be reported to the nearest police station or any ZRA office.
Mr Nzala also dispelled reports that the authority had set up a trust fund.
“The ZRA would like to warn and urge members of the public to strongly ignore and treat social media posts circulating, purporting that there is a Zambia Revenue Support Trust Fund Program and that the Authority has advertised for jobs, as fake. We have noted with great concern fake recruitment adverts circulating on social media purporting to have been issued by the ZRA. This is a big concern for the Authority because some members of the public who are desperate for employment get swindled,”he said.
He said ZRA’s recruitment process is anchored on core values of transparency, professionalism and integrity.
Mr Nzala said that ZRA advertises job vacancies on their website and in the print media.
He said in the past the authority has received cases from some being swindled of hard-earned cash by unscrupulous people purporting to be recruitment agents for ZRA.
He explained the swindlers send fake messages inviting the unsuspecting general public to attend interviews or assessment tests, conduct police clearance, undergo medical examinations and report for work.
(Mwebantu, Sunday, 22nd January, 2023)