THE family of renowned human rights advocate Lucy Sichone, who died 20 years ago, says it will in July this year hold a commemoration gathering to remember her causes.
Lucy Banda Sichone, who was born in 1954 in Kitwe, worked in Zambia as a lawyer, with a pronounced bias towards matters of human rights.
She also founded the Zambia Civic Education Association (ZCEA) in 1993, with the main objective of instilling civil alertness in citizens.
She died on August 24, 1998.
Lucy’s daughter, Martha Sichone-Cameron, told The Mast on Tuesday in Lusaka that there was a family resolution that the life of her mother be celebrated.
“Over the past 20 years since my mother died, her children have grown up and taken on many different vocations, some of which were inspired by our mother. For instance myself, I’m running an organisation that looks after orphans and widows here in Lusaka. So, we have decided to come together after 20 years, since she died, to do a more public commemoration and celebration of her life,” Sichone-Cameron said in an interview.
“Some of this has actually been inspired by some events that are going on in our country. You know, a lot of times as we discuss in our various groups with intellectual friends or people that knew my late mother, we would think about ‘what would Lucy say or do with regards some of the things that are happening?’”
She added that her mother ought to be remembered in many respects.
“We want this commemoration to not only remember the Lucy who fought for human rights, children’s rights and civic education [but] we also want to remember the Lucy who challenged the governing party at that time, in terms of certain injustices against the people. A call to action is the theme for what we would like [to hold]. There will be many different events; we want to go back to the places where she raised awareness, where she did some grassroots work in terms of…. We want to do various events in different places where my mother would be remembered. We want to encourage those people that were so close to her heart that you have not been forgotten – there are different people within the community that continue to fight for rights and injustice,” Sichone-Cameron explained.
“Then we also want to have a gathering in terms of maybe a dinner or ball which will, most likely, be fundraising for some of the causes. This should be sort of a gathering of intellectuals or peers to Lucy – lawyers or even politicians. Come and have an open debate! Come and be open to challenge the status quo.”
And Sichone-Cameron outlined that the last part of the Lucy’s commemoration would be more personal where “we will gather as very close family and friends”.
“Those people that were mentored by my mother should be able to attend. We would like to probably go to her burial site and just visit a cause that she appreciated and supported like the Kasisi Orphanage. All these events will be done in a period of about two weeks in July but the actual dates haven’t been set yet. But the timeframe is between the 9th July and the 21st of July. Right now we are mobilising and bringing on board people who worked with her, loved her and all this will be led by her family,” explained Sichone-Cameron.