Mr Nkata’s burial was preceded by a Church Service at African Covenant Chipangano Church in Garden residential area in Lusaka on Saturday, 17th February, 2018, where it was discovered he was a Reverend, before proceeding to Mutumbi Cemetery for burial.
Hundreds of mourners turned up to pay their last respects to a man whom many described as humble and peaceful.
To the church Mr. Nkhata was an inspiration to many as his passion for the work of God was visible for everyone to see. To the family Mr Nkhata was the best husband and father who taught them not to depend on him, but to instead depend on God the supplier of all things.
And to the Council of Churches in Zambia (CCZ), Mr Nkhata was one of the most disciplined, humble, and positive minded employee.
Below is a tribute delivered at Mr Nkhata’s burial Church Service by CCZ Head of Programmes George Chibwana.
TRIBUTE TO EMMANUEL NKHATA
It is with great sadness that I stand in front of you today delivering this tribute for our brother Emmanuel Nkhata. Preparing this speech was not easy. But on the other hand it was rewarding because it allowed me to reflect on all of the time Emmanuel spent with us at the Council of Churches in Zambia and how humble and dedicated he was. I am pleased that I am able to share some of these memories with you today and some of the attributes that made Emmanuel so special.
From the time Emmanuel joined the Council of Churches in Zambia on 18th August 1995 as a Security Guard, he quickly learned a lot about the value of hard work such that four years later in 1999 he was promoted to become a driver for the CCZ.
Despite Emmanuel being a reserved person, he was peaceful and dedicated to work and was ready to learn things he did not know. Through his attributes of being a team player and a good listener, Emmanuel worked hard as a driver from 1999 up to last year in May when the Council decided to reward him for his loyalty and hard work and promoted him to the position of Transport Officer. This promotion did not make Emmanuel change his way of doing things. He remained loyal and dedicated to work as before, a rare attribute which most of us do not have. If it was someone else he would have started despising others because of the promotion. But with Emmanuel it was like a call for him to work even harder.
Despite his age, Emmanuel went back to school to improve on his academic credentials. As CCZ management we believe Emmanuel would have finished his studies and would have changed his carrier to take up any other suitable position within the ranks of the Council of Churches in Zambia.
It is Emmanuel’s attributes of being peaceful, humble, dedicated, willingness to learn and ability to lead others that made him remain an employee of CCZ for 23 years. As management we have learned from Emmanuel how to live with other people through our daily interaction with him over the years.
We were also touched by his last scripture Emmanuel shared with us while in hospital.
He quoted from the book of 1st Peter 4:7-19 in which he implored us to be good managers of God’s gifts, as well as to suffer as Christians as we continued to pray for him. Emmanuel reminded us not to suffer because we have done something wrong such as stealing or killing another person, but rather to suffer because we are Christians. When you suffer as a Christian you receive a blessing. But when you suffer as a murderer or armed robber you receive a curse. In the same scripture Emmanuel reminded us to keep loving one another sincerely because love covers a multitude of sins; and that we should keep showing hospitality to one another without grumbling. Emmanuel reminded us that the gift each one of us has received must be used to serve one another as good stewards of God’s varied grace.
All of us at CCZ will miss Emmanuel more than words can say. We are, however, glad that we were able to spend so much time together with him over the years. We will miss him dearly and never forget him. His memory will live on in all of us forever.
May His Departed Soul Rest in Peace.
TRIBUTE FROM REV. DR JAPHET NDHLOVU
I am deeply saddened by the news of the passing away of Mr. Emmanuel Nkhata. I worked with Mr. Nkhata for my entire duration during my tour of duty as GS for the CCZ. I travelled long distances with Mr. Nkhata and during that time came to know him as a very helpful and respectful man. He was genuinely humble and always wanted the best for others. He was a hard and dedicated worker. He was always up to date on issues happening and the country and therefore politically very alert. We had several good political and spiritual discussions. I will truly miss Mr. Nkhata. He was a good man. Please accept my deep and sincere condolences as the CCZ family and please do pass my condolences to his dear family.