23 November 2022
Embassy Park Presidential official Burial and Memorial site on Independence Avenue in the capital, Lusaka, is emerging as tourist spot. The Site was declared as National Monument in the year 2009.
It is the first official burial and memorial site for Zambian Presidents.
The Mausoleum for each President is uniquely built with features that represent things which each President is remembered for, a creative and thoughtful boost to their relevance.
The Diplomatic Informer Magazine SA and Thembekile Mandela Foundation visited the Embassy Park Presidential Burial site, a National memorial site honouring the memories and service of the great men to the people of Zambia and across Africa.
Visiting Embassy Park Presidential, the official Burial and memorial site for the departed Zambian Presidents, the CEO of the Diplomatic Informer Magazine SA with the CEO of the Thembekile Mandela Foundation, Ms. Ndileka Mandela and the Business Development Manager of Thembekile Mandala Foundation @Bedford Buyungo, was the most significant part of the visit to the city of Lusaka and we were reminded of the great relationship that existed between the late Former President Kenneth Kaunda and late First Democratic President of the Republic of South Africa, late President Nelson Mandela.
Ms Ndileka Mandela recalled the relationship of the Former late President Kenneth Kaunda and her grandfather the late President Nelson Mandela.
Describing late Kaunda as the champion of anti-colonial struggle. Ms. Mandela said Former late President Kaunda, affectionately called ’KK’, formed part of a great lineage of African leaders who served the continent selflessly.
Without freedom for all, there was freedom for none. Kaunda practiced this legacy together with his generation of leaders.
The generation of Nyerere, Nkurumah, Kenyatta and Luthuli laid the foundation that said that Africa’s freedom was indivisible. In essence what this meant was Kaunda taking the freedom of his country and placing it at the service of the rest of the continent – a task at which he excelled.
We will never forget Kaunda’s contributions to the struggles against colonialism and apartheid, nor the lessons his life holds for reflection on how democracy should be measured and how it can be deepened said Ms. Mandela.
President Kaunda was the first democratically-elected president of Zambia after the country formerly known as Northern Rhodesia gained independence from Britain in 1964. Kaunda remained an elder statesman of the continent until he took ill. Kaunda played his role, served Zambia, the Southern African region and the rest of the continent.
The grave of the First President, Dr Kaunda is inscribed with the ONE ZAMBIA ONE NATION motto, symbolising his commitment to uniting the 73 tribes.
A visit to the site, brings to life the legacy of each fallen President. For example, Dr Mwanawasa’s mausoleum is a traditional sitting stool because he died as a sitting President. In fact, he was the first Zambian President to die in office. As a lawyer, his mausoleum has a lawyer’s wig and a blue cloth which lawyers wear.
His mausoleum has four pillars, each representing what Dr Mwanawasa believed in – from stamping out corruption, developing mining and agriculture sectors, reducing poverty and economy and development. He was President for seven years.
The second to be buried at the site was Mr Chiluba. He served as Zambia’s second President and served two terms. He died on 18 June 2011. Inside his mausoleum are FTJ letters in red, a short form for his name – Frederick Jacob Titus. There is also a cross on top of the building for the man who declared Zambia as a Christian nation on 29 December 1991.
There is a symbol of a house signifying the role the second President played in empowering Zambians with council houses sold at one US Dollar, which was equivalent to ten Kwacha at the time, said Harold Aston Machuku, the caretaker of the Presidential Burial Site.
At the entrance to Mr Chiluba’s mausoleum is a necktie, a sign of his taste for fashion.
On 18 March 2022, Zambia as the country put to rest its fourth President, Rupiah Bwezani Banda, affectionately known as ‘RB’ who died of cancer. His grave has an epitaph: “The world is diminished because he was here” “His Excellency Rupiah Bwezani Banda The Fourth President of the Republic of Zambia 19th February, 1937 to 11th March, 2022.
Next is the mausoleum for the fifth Zambian President, Michael Chilufya Sata. He was the second to die while serving as President. His mausoleum is known as King Solomon Temple because of the promise he made to rule the country by 10 commandments of God.
During his three years in office, he created 29 districts, among them, Rufunsa, Chilanga, Vubwi, Sioma, Chirundu, Chikankata, Lunga, Chipili, Mwansabombwe, Mulobezi, Sikongo, Manyinga, Chisamba, Chitambo and Luano.
Others are Mitete, Shiwang’andu, Limulunga, Nalolo and Luampa. Mr Sata is also remembered for creating Zambia’s tenth province – Muchinga, which was curved from Northern Province.
Thanks to our guide, Machuku in charge of Embassy Park Presidential Burial site Lusaka Zambia 🇿🇲, we learnt a lot about Zambia’s history of the Zambian forefathers on this tour.
The Embassy Park, seems to be a great place to honour the memories of the service of these great men to the people of Zambia and across Africa.