Zambian doctors have advised that ailing Ex-President Frederick Chiluba be permitted to travel to South Africa to seek medical treatment over his aggravated cardiac condition. The doctors said Chiluba’s health has deteriorated over the last few weeks. The former president is attending a corruption trial against his wife Regina Chiluba, at the outskirts of the capital, Lusaka. President Levy Mwanawasa’s government is reportedly making travel arrangements to enable the former president to travel to South Africa by the end of the week.
Emmanuel Mwamba is the spokesman for Ex- President Frederick Chiluba. From Ndola, near the capital, he tells VOA English to Africa service reporter Peter Clottey that the former president’s health condition has sharply deteriorated.
“Dr. Chiluba has not been well from the time he collapsed in May and there has been some kinds of deterioration that the doctors are worried about. So they recommended that his review date be brought forward, and he should seek specialist treatment to ensure that they stem the deterioration,” Mwamba pointed out.
He denied there were conflicting reports about the status of former President Chiluba’s health.
“Well there is no conflicting report, government doctors stated that Dr. Chiluba was ill and that he was not fit to stand trial, but if the court decided that he should stand trial, they should not allow him to leave the controlled environment that he lives in. That is why the doctors recommended that a video link should be set up in his house so that he can follow court proceedings from home. All that goes to show that Dr. Chiluba is not well,” he said.
Mwamba said although the former president has shown marked improvement, his health condition is still deteriorating.
“He had shown good improvement between January and March, but after the collapse I think he has not picked up well as we had hoped,” Mwamba noted.
He said the former president would soon seek medical attention abroad.
“He would go to South Africa very soon, he is currently in Ndola because Mrs. Chiluba is attending a court trial. And you are aware that Mrs. Chiluba literarily, is also a nurse to Dr. Chiluba. So, Dr. Chiluba cannot be in Lusaka, so we had to bring Dr. Chiluba here, although he is not attending the court himself, but he has to be here were Mrs. Chiluba is,” he noted.
Mwamba said although he is not in a position to determine the stress level all the court cases has on the former president he is worried they are having a negative toll on him.
“Yes, in fact although this is a medical condition, and I’m not a doctor competent to comment about this, but sometimes you see public pressures somehow seeping in. And you see the president deteriorate because he is a cardiac patient, but it’s a matter I would leave for doctors All we are worried about is that the man is unwell, and require specialist treatment as soon as possible,” he said.