Friday, 17th June, 2022

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     Friday, 17th June, 2022

The House met at 0900 hours

[MADAM SPEAKER in the Chair]






Madam Speaker: Hon. Members will recall that on Thursday, 9th June, 2022, when the House was considering the ministerial statement on the Teacher Recruitment Exercise and Hon. D Syakalima, Minister of Education, was responding to a follow-up question, Mr M. Kafwaya, hon. Member of Parliament for Lunte Constituency, raised a point of order. His point of order was based on Standing Order No. 65, which requires an hon. Member debating to ensure the information he or she provides to the House is factual and verifiable.

In raising the point of order, Mr M. Kafwaya, MP, stated, inter alia, as follows:

“Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister rose in arrogance and told us, who were hon. Ministers before, that we were doing things in the most haphazard manner and that his methodical Government is now doing things meticulously.

Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning was seated there. I saw him, and he mentioned 30,000 teachers. That was a definite number that required baseline information he could only get six months later. How did the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, who is in a meticulous United Party for National Development (UPND) Government, find the 30,000 teachers?

Mr Speaker, is that hon. Minister in order to be presenting information that cannot be verified?

I seek your very serious ruling, Mr Speaker.”

In his immediate response, the Hon. Mr Second Deputy Speaker reserved his ruling. The matter has been studied and I now render the ruling.

Hon. Members, the gist of Mr M. Kafwaya, MP’s point of order was that the hon. Minister of Education accused the previous Government of operating in a haphazard manner without providing evidence to support his statement.

My office had recourse to the relevant verbatim record in order to ascertain whether, indeed, the hon. Minister of Education made the statement as alleged. A relevant excerpt of his statement is as follows:

“Now, Sir, let me tell our hon. Colleagues how they dangerously failed. They were doing things in the most haphazard manner.

Mr Speaker, let me just explain this. Last week, I went to Britain to attend the Education World Forum, and when delegates from the London School of Economics and Political Science, a world-renowned university, heard that there was a Minister of Education from Zambia, they asked to meet me. When I asked why they wanted to meet me, they said it was because they had done research in Zambia.

Sir, the delegates said that in 2012 and 2015, they had conducted research in teacher recruitment and placement here. I do not know whether the study was sponsored by the World Bank or somebody else. However, our hon. Colleagues across did not want them even to come and disseminate the information, and make informed decisions. Had those researchers presented the results, our colleagues would have designed a template like we did, which was exactly the same as the one the researchers created.”

Hon. Members, evidently, it is this statement that Mr M. Kafwaya, MP, raised a point of order on. From the excerpt, it is clear that the hon. Minister attempted to justify his statement by referring to a conversation he had had with some researchers, who allegedly conducted a research in the country. However, this was not supported by any documentary or cogent evidence as envisaged by Standing Order No. 65. In view of this, the hon. Minister breached Standing Order No. 65 and was out of order.

Hon. Members, regrettably, I have noticed a tendency on both sides of the House of hon. Members making unsubstantiated statements, which have the potential to mislead the House and the public at large. I wish to remind you to avoid making such unsubstantiated statements in the House.

Thank you.


Madam Speaker: Hon. Members will recall that on Thursday, 9thJune, 2022, when the House was considering Question for Oral Answer No. 322, Mr A. Katakwe, hon. Member of Parliament for Solwezi East Constituency, raised a point of order pursuant to Standing Order No. 207. In his point of order, Mr A. Katakwe asked whether some hon. Members of Parliament, including Mr F. R. Kapyanga, hon. Member of Parliament for Mpika Constituency, who walked out of the Chamber while shouting on top of their voices, had not committed a contempt of the House.

In his immediate response, the Hon. Mr Second Deputy Speaker reserved his ruling so that the matter could be studied thoroughly.

Hon. Members, my office reviewed the relevant Parliament Television footage, and the verbatim record of what transpired on the material day. I wish to confirm that hon. Members of the Opposition did walk out of the House. However, the footage did not show any hon. Member of Parliament walking out of the House while shouting on top of their voices as alleged in the point of order.

Hon. Members, my predecessors and I have ruled that walkouts per se do not amount to a breach of privilege.

To this end, the erstwhile Speaker, Rt. Hon. Robinson Nabulyato, in ruling on walk-outs from the House by hon. Members of the United National Independence Party (UNIP), stated, inter alia, as follows (Parliamentary Debates of 28th January – 11th March 1992, page 1527):

“Hon. Members, in some Commonwealth Parliaments, opposition parties, pressure groups, political factions and sometimes even ruling parties which are represented in Parliament have, from time to time, staged walk-outs from debates of Parliament. This is a political strategy to block Bills, motions or any questions, which in their opinion are undesirable, unpopular or objectionable. In some cases, walkouts have been used by dissatisfied groups of hon. Members to put on record their resentment.”

Additionally, this position was endorsed by the erstwhile Rt. Hon. Justice Dr Patrick Matibini, SC, in ruling on a point of order raised by the erstwhile Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. H. Kalaba, MP, against hon. Members of the UPND who walked out of the House on Friday, 27th November, 2015 (National Assembly Parliamentary Debates of 18th September – 10th December, 2015, pages 3282 – 3284). In that ruling, he, at page 3283 – 3284, stated as follows:

“Going by the precedent set on the matter in Speaker Nabulyato’s ruling, walkouts, per se, do not amount to a breach of the Rules of the House or indeed parliamentary practice and procedure. In view of this, the hon. Members of the UPND were not out of order to have walked out of the House. This is especially so that the Members that walked out on that day did return to the House shortly after what appeared to be an impromptu caucus or consultation.”

From the foregoing, it is very clear that a walkout is a permissible way of hon. Members protesting or showing their dissatisfaction, and does not amount to a breach of privilege or contempt of the House. This is provided that the walkout does not result in a disruption of the proceedings of the House. In view of this, the hon. Members of the Opposition who walked out of the House on that day were not out of order because they did not disrupt the proceedings of the House.

Thank you.



The Vice-President (Mrs Nalumango): Madam Speaker, I rise to give the House an indication of the business it will consider next week.

Madam, on Tuesday, 21st June, 2022, the Business of the House will begin with Questions for Oral Answer, if there will be any. This will be followed by presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. Thereafter, the House will debate the motions to adopt the reports of the following Committees:

      (a)  Committee on Youth, Sport and Child Matters; and

      (b)  Committee on Education, Science, and Technology.

Madam Speaker, on Wednesday, 22nd June, 2022, the Business of the House will start with Questions for Oral Answer, if there will be any. Thereafter, the House will consider a Private Member’s Motion, if there will be any. This will be followed by presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. The House will then debate the motions to adopt the reports of the following Committees:

      (a)   Committee on Media, Information and Communication Technologies; and

      (b)    Committee on National Guidance and Gender Matters.

Thereafter, the House will consider the Committee Stage of the Judges (Conditions of Service) (Amendment) Bill No. 6 of 2022.

Madam, on Thursday, 23rd June, 2022, the Business of the House will begin with Questions for Oral Answer, if there will be any. This will be followed by presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. Thereafter, the House will debate the motions to adopt the reports of the following Committees:

     (a)    Committee on Cabinet Affairs; and

     (b)    Committee on Health, Community Development and Social Services.

Madam Speaker, on Friday, 24th June, 2022, the Business of the House will commence with the Vice-President’s Question Time. Thereafter, the House will consider Questions for Oral Answer, if there will be any. This will be followed by presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. The House will then debate the Motion to adopt the Report of the Zambian Delegation to the Twelfth Ordinary Session of the Plenary Assembly of the Forum of Parliaments of the Member States of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region.

I thank you, Madam.




Rev. Katuta: On a matter of urgent public importance, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: A matter of urgent public importance is raised.

Rev. Katuta: Thank you, Madam Speaker, for giving me this opportunity.

In Chienge, we have farmers who totally depend on the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP). They spend so much of their energy on growing maize. As we speak, we have more than five sheds where their bags of maize are still marooned. None of the farmers have been paid, and none of that maize has been collected by the Food Reserve Agency (FRA). Today is 17th June, 2022.

Madam Speaker, the people of Chienge, the farmers of Chienge, are in dire need of this money that has to be paid to them and these bags of maize need to be collected.

I just need your serious ruling on this because other places have been attended to. What about Chienge? When will the hon. Minister of Agriculture or the FRA intervene in this situation? We are talking of more than 50,000 bags likely to go to waste in Chienge.

Madam Speaker: Thank you, hon. Member for Chienge. The issue of the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) and maize collection and payments has been discussed before this hon. House several times, and I believe there have been even ministerial statements on it. So, your matter of urgent public importance is not admitted. You are advised to follow-up with the respective Ministry of Agriculture and, maybe, even the Vice-President’s office if that matter should be addressed. It is not admitted as it does not meet the criteria.

Thank you.



Mr Mundubile (Mporokoso): Thank you, Madam Speaker, for this opportunity that you have given me to ask a question to Her Honour the Vice-President.

Your Honour the Vice-President, when the United Party for National Development (UPND) came into power, it condemned the Patriotic Front (PF) for giving subsidies, especially in the energy sector on fuel and electricity. The UPND Government was very strong in saying that its policy would be to not give subsidies and, therefore, all subsidies would be removed so as to have cost-reflective tariffs and cost-reflective prices on fuel.

The UPND Government extended the Statutory Instrument that gave a waiver on applicable taxes on fuel up to June this year. I am just reading from the Daily Nation Newspaper and I quote: “Government to Extend Fuel Subsidies – Kapala.”

Mr Mundubile: Madam Speaker, this is a clear policy shift, especially that hon. Members of the Government spoke very loudly against the PF on subsidies. We are, however, happy, as members of the PF, because the UPND is slowly beginning to appreciate the wisdom that the PF was using in making most of its decisions, going by the many changes that the Government is making in its decisions, including this one of subsidies.

Now, my question is: we are all aware that negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on the bailout package are troubled. Earlier, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning had assured us that negotiations would be concluded by April. The date moved to June, and now, maybe, to September or end of the year. Does she not think this policy shift will negatively affect negotiations with the IMF?

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

The Vice-President: Thank you, Madam Speaker. I would like to thank the Leader of the Opposition and hon. Member of Parliament for Mporokoso for this concern, I believe, on behalf of the Patriotic Front (PF) and not the Zambian people.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, indeed, it is the position, particularly on fuel. We will not continue to subsidise it and we are not subsidising it. Maybe it is in semantics. We are not subsidising fuel. What we are doing is to give a tax waiver. I think that should be made very clear. It is a waiver on tax. It is not that we are buying fuel and putting public resources in there. I think these are the two things that must be understood. Yes, that is what is happening. That is what it is, if you see those that bring in fuel go on a waiver.

I do not know what the hon. Member means when he says we have a policy shift. There is no shift. I have talked about the tax.

Madam Speaker, on the issue of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), I think all of us must understand that we have a plan and the plan that we had from the beginning is as was stated by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning that we will do everything possible to ensure that negotiations succeed by April. However, issues of negotiations are just negotiations. That is the way they are. That means there is another part to the negotiation. Indeed, up to now, your hon. Members on your left must be listening. The IMF has been here praising what this Government has done.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: On their side of negotiations, let us admit, Madam Speaker, that our hon. Colleagues tried to engage the IMF and totally failed.

Hon. UPND Members: They failed!

The Vice-President: In this House, you have guided, Madam Speaker, that we should say the truth all the time, and this is the truth. It does not matter how much they argue. This is the position. We have done our part and creditors have also done theirs. In fact, they had to look and see. They are making their own progress. I think the hon. Member knows we can determine what we are able to do. We may not determine what the other party is supposed to do, but we are still confident, as everybody has heard from the IMF, that we will go through to sign and agree.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, we are on course. We do not change like that. When we change, we will come and tell you that we have changed this policy for this reason. On these two, however, we are on course.

Thank you, Madam Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr J. E. Banda (Petauke Central): Thank you, Madam Speaker, for giving the good people of Petauke this opportunity to ask Her Honour the Vice-President a question.

Madam Speaker, in the 2021/2022 farming season, suppliers in the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) delayed in delivering farming inputs like fertiliser to farmers. They supplied as late as April and this caused farmers to buy farming inputs at a high cost. One 50kg bag of fertiliser cost about K1,200. Therefore, the production cost became high. Now, the good people of Petauke are asking the New Dawn Government to consider increasing the buying price for maize, which is K160.

Hon. Government Member: Thank you, Madam Speaker. I will, again, try to understand the question because if I do not, I will give another answer.

The hon. Member, I think, is talking of two things here, if I understood him. He started by talking about the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) and the delayed input delivery. When he talks about the cost of fertiliser, I think he is referring to farmers who are not dependant on FISP because the delayed delivery did not change the cost of fertiliser to the farmer. I hope that is the position.

Madam Speaker, if I understood him well on FISP and the delayed delivery in many places, I think we have explained in this House. It can become tedious and I may end up saying this and that. We understand what happened. How we all believed that inputs were already in the Country only to find, to our surprise, that they were not ready. However, we did try to do all the other things we have talked about. Therefore, the Members of FISP would not have been affected by this K1,200 the hon. Member talked about. It was FISP across the board. They contributed 400 and that was that. The issue of high cost of fertiliser cannot be felt by FISP Members. They cannot cry foul over the cost of fertiliser or the selling price of maize as laid down by the Food Reserve Agency (FRA).

Thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Michelo (Bweengwa): Thank you so much hon. Madam Speaker –

Madam Speaker: Order!

Sorry, I meant Bangweulu. You will come through later.

Mr Kasandwe (Bangweulu): Thank you, Madam Speaker. I was almost getting a heart attack. I would like to agree with Her Honour the Vice-President that the waiver on fuel was introduced in 2020 by the PF. I just wanted to agree.

My question to Her Honour the Vice-President is this: a couple of months ago, the Leader of the Opposition in the House, Hon. Mundubile, raised concern vis-a vis Article 259 of the 2016 Constitution, and I quote:

    “259. (1)       Where a person is empowered to make a nomination or an appointment to a public office, that

                       person shall ensure—

            (a)   that the person being nominated or appointed has the requisite qualification to discharge the

                   functions of the office, as prescribed or specified in public office circulars or establishment registers;

            (b)   that fifty percent of each gender is nominated or appointed from the total available positions, unless

                  it is not practicable to do so; and

          (c)   equitable representation of the youth and persons with disabilities, where these qualify for nomination

                 or appointment.”

This question was brought to the attention of Her Honour the Vice-President a few months ago and her answer was in threefold. She said, firstly, that we must give the President time to appoint as prescribed by the Constitution; secondly, she requested the Leader of the Opposition in the House to lay the document on the Table for the positions that were appointed; and thirdly, she said, “when you look at our side, there are some young people, some youths in Cabinet.”

Now, since she requested for that information to be laid on the Table, I will lay it. Before I ask a question, I will say this: going through Parliament bio data, by the time Her Honour the Vice-President was answering that question, there was no minister who was a youth appointed by the President. Even from looking, I can tell that there is no youth among hon. Ministers.

Hon. UPND Member: Haimbe!

Mr Lusambo: Bakote bonse.

Mr Kasandwe: Madam Speaker, by that time, the youngest hon. Minister was forty years old. So, there was no youth. Now, the President, in my opinion, has departed from the dictates of the Constitution and I will provide data. Out of the eight nominations that the President made, only two were women. Out of twenty-six Cabinet Ministers, five are female. Then, out of 116 District Commissioners (DCs), there are less than eighteen female and youth. Out of more than forty permanent secretaries, substantative and deputies, there are about eleven females. Out of ten provincial hon. Ministers, there is one female, no disabled and no youth. Out of the four service chiefs, there is no youth, disabled or female. I can go on and on to give examples of the appointments. So far, Madam Speaker, the President has made more than 300 appointments. Now, my question to Her Honour the Vice-President, being a woman herself, and the number one advisor to the President, is: is she satisfied with the number of women, youths and the disabled appointed by the President so far?

Mr Kasandwe laid the document on the Table.

Madam Speaker: Order!

Hon. Member, the document you are laying on the Table, is it an original or public document? What is the nature?

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Kasandwe: It is in the public domain. It is a notorious fact.

Madam Speaker: Is it the original?

Mr Kasandwe: It is hand written, but it is in the public domain.


Mr Kasandwe: The figures can be verified even from here. There are only five female hon. Ministers out of twenty-six.

Hon. UPND Members: Ah!

Mr Chinkuli: Answer the question.


Madam Speaker: Let me give guidance.

Mr Kasandwe: Figures do not lie. You can check the bio data. There is no youth among hon. Ministers.


Madam Speaker: Order, order!

Hon. Member, the document that you want to lay on the Table does not meet the criterion that is stated in the Standing orders. It is not an original. In particular, I will refer you to Standing Order 138 (2):

“A backbencher shall not Table a copy of a public document unless the copy has been certified as a true copy of the original document by the relevant head of Government ministry, department or agency that has custody of the original document.”

Your document, therefore, hon. Member, does not meet the criteria and cannot be laid on the Table.

Now, we can allow Her Honour the Vice-President to answer your question.

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, let start by thanking you for that guidance. All the statistics that he has given, even though honestly, as I am standing here, I could have forgotten. I do not even remember that specific question he referred to.

Mr Kasandwe: Hmmm!

The Vice-President: You cannot argue with that. I said I cannot remember. So, how do you want to argue with my memory.


The Vice-President: If I was to answer, what will I answer to? He has not laid on the Table the information he alleges to have.


The Vice-President: I am still answering hon. Colleagues. Here, let us stalk and let us not fight. This is one House, Madam Speaker, where unity must be seen and we should address real issues. If you want to ask a political question like the hon. Member is trying to, I can also start answering politically.

Hon. UPND Members: Yes

The Vice-President: That is the danger, Madam Speaker

Mr Kasandwe: Just answer the question.

The Vice-President: I am answering. You talked. You are referring to a Constitution of 2016 and a Government was there. So, what is this?

Mr Michelo: They had no youth themselves.

The Vice-President: What is this? The Constitution was useless yesterday? It has become useful today?

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mundubile: Take it easy

The Vice-President: Do not worry.

Madam Speaker, I think I try to remain as calm as possible.

Mr Mutale: Twalimishiba!

The Vice-President: You just see the top. My heart is very settled.


Madam Speaker: Order!

Hon. Members, can we give due respect to Her Honour the Vice-President as she answers your questions.

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, like I have said, I will not answer to the statistics. However, as regards the question that he put that: as a woman, am I happy with the appointments? As a woman, with the human resource available, you should honestly follow it. I am happy so far. However, there is room for all us in this country to be sure of how we set the law. There is a limit on the pool that the President has to pick from. So, can we create the pool?

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: Hon. Member for Bangweulu. Oh, Bweengwa. I am sorry. The two, Bangweulu and Bweengwa, are confusing me.

Mr Michelo (Bweengwa): Madam Speaker, at times, I fail to understand the reason people from the Patriotic Front (PF) laugh at our Government when it commissions some of the projects which they undertook during the time they were ruling. Now, what I and the Zambian people know is that the PF borrowed huge amounts of money to construct roads and build houses in this country. They left a huge mountain of debt for the United Party for National Development (UPND) to start dismantling. This is money they got when they were building roads, which, on a daily basis, they are jumping and screaming that we are the ones who did this forgetting that it is the UPND Government which is paying for those projects…

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Michelo: …which they undertook. Now, who must be given credit? Is it the ones who borrowed, but did not pay back or the ones who are paying for the projects which they are commissioning?

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sing’ombe: Jata nauluma!

Madam Speaker: Order!

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for Bweengwa for giving us a little historical information which affects the current status that colleagues in the previous Government borrowed and have left a mountain of debt to be dismantled by this Government.

Madam Speaker, I think we have to apportion who did what and who should be praised. Borrowing will continue by Governments, anywhere, but I think the concern of the hon. Member is reckless borrowing. Where you borrow to do things and you have literally no intention to pay back, you will be called another name.


The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, in whatever we do, we should also calculate whether we are able to pay back. However, it seems like we did not do very well as a people and a Government. We over borrowed. This is why we are in a tight situation today.

Hon. UPND Member: They over-borrowed on our behalf.


The Vice-President: Indeed.

Borrowing that generations later will pay back has a connotation of irresponsibility. I am sorry I cannot think of another word right now. That is why I said reckless borrowing. Hon. Colleagues, let us admit that.

Madam Speaker, unfortunately for the United Party for National Development (UPND), because it is in the Government, it has the burden to pay. That is why we need support from the left side. When we are looking for solutions on how to dismantle this huge debt, let us not be on this side. Let us speak with one language. The hon. Minister is trying so that we can dismantle. Twa lishiba mpyana ngo apyana na mabala, but their Mabalas –


The Vice-President: Meaning ‘the spots’, Madam . The spots were too huge and it means we have to do a lot to clean up and continue to develop. The praise must go to those that are paying. I was asked a question.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Kampyongo (Shiwang’andu): Madam Speaker, thank you so much. We appreciate the response from Her Honour the Vice-President that subsidies and waivers are just one and the same thing.


Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, I have asked the Vice-President on three occasions about the cost of living for her people. I know that, last time, she made assurances that when the stocks that were inherited finished, at the beginning of this year, new stocks of various commodities would roll-in with new and affordable prices.

Madam Speaker, you know that the cost of living is mainly triggered by the price of fuel. We are happy that the hon. Minister of energy has extended the Statutory Instrument, which was left, to waive the applicable taxes on fuel or finished products.

Madam Speaker, how does Her Honour the Vice-President expect her Government to ensure that prices of fuel are regulated now that the Indeni Petroleum Refinery Company Limited which was our state asset and was cushioning and helping in terms of regulating the prices of fuel and thereby, ensuring that the cost of other commodities remained affordable for our people? Indeni and TAZAMA are gone and so is the Ndola Energy Company Limited. How is she seeing the prices of commodities being stable and affordable for her people?

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, I thank you and I thank the hon. Member for Shiwang’andu for the concern about the cost of living, which is, indeed, as it should be. For us, as leaders, we are concerned about the cost of living of our people.

Madam Speaker, I think it is important, as we speak on behalf of Zambians, that we also give them the right information, and this House must give hope to Zambians that something is happening.

Madam Speaker, it is important to appreciate that we continue with waiver. However, on the cost of fuel, I think it is important to know that the cost of fuel is not necessarily determined by us. We are not the determiners of the cost of fuel. We depend on the international cost and we take care of the cost here. This includes the steps taken, such as the waiver.

Madam Speaker, generally, on the performance of the economy, whether we like it or not, the inflation rate is going down. The inflation rate has been going down and it is that hope that we should give to the Zambian people. As long as this big indicator in the cost of commodity is going down, we are getting better. We will get there. The cost of living is going to go down. That is the intention of this Government. Even the last time I spoke, I expressed the same intention. The cost of living will go down.

Madam Speaker, on the Indeni issue, I do not know, but I think I need to learn a lot. However, Indeni was not operational even when our hon. Colleagues were in power.

Hon. PF Members: It was.

The Vice-President: It was not. That is what I know.

Madam Speaker, we are concerned. However, we cannot control, beyond what we are doing, the cost of fuel. However, as regards the general performance, even under these difficult circumstances where the cost of fuel is not controlled by us, when inflation is going down, it means the cost of living will surely get down.

I know the hon. Leader of the Opposition is trying to lobby who should ask which question. That is fine. We will respond.

 I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: From where I sit, I can see everything; the strategy and planning, so –


Madam Speaker: The hon. Member for Lunte, you may proceed.

Mr Kafwaya (Lunte): Madam Speaker, it has become abundantly clear that some of the hon. Ministers, who are seated with the Her Honour the Vice-President, are working against the President.


Hon. Government Members: Question!

Mr Kafwaya: They are not only working against the President, but also the Zambian people. I will give only three examples. Firstly is the hon. Minister of Agriculture. The President promised poor Zambian farmers that he was going to buy maize for K200 per 50 kg bag.

Mr Sing’ombe: Question!

Mr Kafwaya: The hon. Minister of Agriculture has announced K160 per 50 kg bag. Secondly is the hon. Minister of Energy. The President promised the Zambian people that they are going to be buying fuel for K12 per litre. Ever since that hon. Minister of Energy was appointed, he has been increasing the price of fuel.


Mr Kafwaya: Today, fuel is now costing more than K24 per litre. Thirdly, and my final example, is the hon. Minister of Home Affairs and Internal Security. The President promised that he was going to rule this country by the application of the rule of law. The video we saw of police brutality when arresting some youths in Luapula Province is aboard.

My question is: why does she think the President is quiet? Why is he not breathing fire on those hon. Minister who are working against him and the poor Zambian people?

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, the allegation that there are hon. Ministers who are working against the President, I think let us dispel it now. No hon. Minister is working against the President.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: We do not work in silos. We are a united entity. When the hon. Member says the President said he would increase the price of maize to K200 – I think that is what he said. In fact, he should have said the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) instead of the hon. Minister. The FRA announced the maize floor price at K160. We work within context and that goes even for energy. Just wait and see where we are going. It is not just to wake up like magic and do abracadabra.

Madam Speaker, they started talking about free education here, in the very first month we entered into Government. ‘Where is the free education?” they said when they are the leaders. Everything is progressive, including the cost of making something and the cost of sale. They will see this sooner than later.

Madam Speaker, I do not know particularly, but that is about energy and agriculture. On home affairs, and the example given, yes, I will start by agreeing that two wrongs never make a right. However, if I were the mother of such insulting boys, eeh! I would be ashamed to stand in public.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: I did not expect any hon. Member to even bring this on the Floor.


The Vice-President: I am aware that in the former ruling party, it was almost institutionalised to make such insults. They even turned them into songs. How can we honestly allow such kind of language from a child given birth to by a woman? Should we even talk about that? We should all be ashamed as a people. We have a culture and tradition. We know how we train our children. I think on this one, hon. Colleagues, we know. My hon. Minister not too long ago said, yes, the law on defamation –

Mr Kafwaya interjected.

The Vice-President: Let me speak because you have said something that Zambians have seen on social media. Maybe you saw the beating and not the insults, honourable. I have stated that two wrongs never make a right. That means even the beating was not ok. “Two wrongs never make a right,” is a common saying.

Mr Kafwaya interjected.

The Vice-President: You are talking – unless I do not know, then–

Madam Speaker: Order!

The Vice-President: Sorry, Madam for answering.

Madam Speaker: Hon. Member for Lunte, you have asked your question, please, do not engage Her Honour the Vice-President when she is trying to answer your question.


Madam Speaker: Let us have some order.

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, if this question is only because of the beating, then the hon. Member does not have the story. I think before we ask, we should know exactly what we are referring to. Therefore, that makes me ashamed as a Zambian mother who has brought up children. We should not allow that. For me, if social media is something to go by – because I do not think this is anywhere else – that was a terrible thing. Those are words you would not like to hear about anybody. I would not want anybody to say such things about Hon. Kafwaya, never. I would not. Therefore, it should not be said about anybody in our country. It does not matter the title; whether you are a President, or you are as ordinary as Nalumango. It should never be allowed. Where I come from, a child who insults my neighbour, I am the one who would deal with him/her. Therefore, such behaviour by those young people, too young; who instigated it?

Hon. Government Members: Kafwaya, Kafwaya!

The Vice-President: That should not be done. It is terrible. You would not even want to listen, but you have to listen to it because you are occupying a public office. Let us train our children.

Hon. Member: It is Kafwaya who sent them.

The Vice-President: We are talking of –

Madam Speaker: Order, order! Hon. Members.

Hon. Member: Kafwaya is responsible.

Madam Speaker: Who is speaking on the microphone without being given the Floor, interrupting Her Honour the Vice-President while she is answering questions? Hon. Members who are connected through the amphitheatre and Zoom, please, can we maintain decorum.

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, I think we should take responsibility as leaders and as elders of our nation to give guidance. This is degeneration. It has never been done in our communities to allow such terrible insults on an innocent mother seated somewhere. You may be unhappy with the President, but what has the mother done? It was a sad day. Whoever has seen that knows it was a sad day for Zambia. It should not happen again.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Mushanga (Bwacha): I thank you, Madam Speaker, and a good morning to Her Honour the Vice-President. I am just passing through. I will be going back to the cinema hall after this sitting.

Madam Speaker, the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) still has many unresolved issues and our people are now saying the CDF is just on paper and in speeches.

Mr Mutelo: They money is in your account!

Mr Mushanga: Madam Speaker, the lack of medicines and reagents in our health facilities remain a very big challenge in Bwacha Parliamentary Constituency.

Hon. Government Member: That is not CDF!

Mr Mushanga: Last Saturday, I went to some of the facilities in my constituency. Some of the machines bought at a huge cost are almost becoming non-functional because of the lack of reagents.

Madam Speaker, local farmers are troubled by the increment of only...


Mr Mushanga: ...K10 from K150 to K160.

The last point where I am drawing my question is this: Her Honour the Vice-President announced or made a statement on the Floor of this House that as the New Dawn Government – I think the witness is my elder brother, Hon. Jack Mwiimbu –had come to unite families. It was on the Floor of the House. As I stand here, I am very sad, especially with what is happening under the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Health. We have seen directors being moved from Ndeke House to provinces on demotion. Those who were Provincial Medical Directors have also been demoted to District Medical Officers. They have started reporting to the office that was reporting to them.

Hon. Government Members: Yes!

Mr Mushanga: Madam Speaker, my question is: has the statement or the position which Her Honour the Vice-President made on the Floor of the House that the United Party for National Development (UPND) had come to unite families changed? We are seeing the opposite. People are being transferred and separated from their families. They are being separated from their wives and children to other provinces. Has the position Her Honour the Vice-President made on the Floor of the House changed?

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for Bwacha who is the most consistent in terms of greeting. I thank him very much.


The Vice-President: I do not know which question I should deal with because he has brought out a number of issues. Maybe I could take the one where he really spoke with a passion, which was the last one, on the policy of uniting the family.

Madam Speaker, I will not go into the area of equipment and machines at the Ministry of Health and all that because there was a very comprehensive statement in the House yesterday and many questions were asked. I believe the hon. Acting Leader of Government Business in the House, acting as hon. Minister of Health, did justice to that. Otherwise it becomes some tedious repetition in the House. Therefore, I leave that alone.

Madam Speaker, on the policy of uniting families, it is critically important that we work on it. Families in a Christian nation ought to remain united. There is no policy shift. This is what we are sticking to. We want to see families united. It may not be so easy because of the so many people who have lived separately from each other. Therefore, we will continue with that, but there is an element in what I hear, which is the transfers that may cause separation. We are praying that such should be as temporary as possible because we want people to be together to avoid too many things. Also, God wants the family to be together.

Madam Speaker, there are also issues of discipline in that. He has talked of demotion, promotion and what have you. We cannot start discussing those unless we get evidence of malpractice because those should be disciplinary issues within the ministries. When a ministry has reasons to demote, it has to. We cannot start arguing those issues, but on bringing people together, nothing has changed. I speak here on behalf of the Government. The implementing ministries must work on bringing people together as much as possible.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Wamunyima (Nalolo): Madam Speaker, I was getting worried that you were forgetting that there are two political parties on the left; the Patriotic Front (PF) and the Party of National Unity and Progress (PNUP).

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Wamunyima: Madam Speaker, thank you for according the people of Nalolo an opportunity to ask a question to Her Honour the Vice-President.

Madam Speaker, last year in August, the President made a statement that those who were unfairly dismissed on grounds of tribe or unfairly retired in national interest should be reinstated. On 5th November, 2021, the Government, through the Secretary to the Cabinet, Mr Patrick Kangwa, directed that appeals and reapplications be made for such Civil Servants. Beyond that, there has been no status on whether there have been any reinstatements.

Madam Speaker, have there been any reinstatements as of today, 17th June, 2022?

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, that is true. It is a statement of fact. We said that and the Secretary to the Cabinet said that. There are many applications from individuals who felt that they were discriminated against whether politically or for whatever reason they may have called “national interest”. I know that the process is still going on, but as to the status, I cannot state here exactly where we are or how many may have been dealt with. I do not have that information, but I will try to see if I can find the status and bring the information to the House. However, we still stick to the fact that we should not allow discrimination based on anything because we are all equal and truly believe in the rule of law.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Mwambazi (Bwana Mkubwa): Madam Speaker, my question is simple. This last rainy season, we had fifty-six families affected in Twashuka Ward of Bwana Mkubwa Constituency. Those people are still living in tents. Are there any mitigation measures that the Government is taking to ensure that those people can be restored?

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, on such an issue, allow me, again, because sometimes my memory may fail, I cannot remember the details of those people in Bwana Mkubwa in Twashuka Ward who are living in tents.

Madam Speaker, it is important, sometimes, that hon. Members come, we discuss and see. Hon. Members are going to have a sensitisation workshop on disasters. We have programmes on how we can help where it is a true disaster, but I am sure when people speak to each other, they can determine which is a true disaster.

Madam, a flood in my village in Mongu may not be classified as a disaster because a disaster is something that happens without you knowing. However, when it is something that happens every time, we celebrate it. So, we have to understand. Are people remaining in certain situations even though there is an alternative? We have to wait and see whether there is an alternative for them. What is it that affected them? Was it a flood or blown off roofs? We need to know what it was so that we see how they can be supported if they qualify under our guidelines to be supported. We are here to support our Zambian people when a genuine disaster befalls them, more to a permanent situation than a situation where another disaster will happen again.

Madam Speaker: Thank you. That concludes that session. We make progress –

Rev Katuta: On a point of order, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Rev. Katuta: Madam Speaker, thank you and welcome back.

Madam, I may not have my Standing Orders booklet, but –

Hon. Mwila gave Rev. Katuta the Standing Orders.

Rev. Katuta: Madam Speaker, my point of order is about the Vice-President’s question time. In forty-five minutes, we are having about five questions, which is depriving some of us who have pressing questions which can even help the nation. My point of order is on the House. I want to find out how this can be helped because, instead of questions, we have seen debates. I would like to find out your position on that.

Madam Speaker: Thank you very much hon. Member for that observation. I have guided previously that when we ask our questions, we should not debate, but I have seen a tendency of hon. Members standing debating first and taking, at least, more than two minutes to ask one question. If we do that, we are depriving other hon. Members, with equally important questions, time to ask those questions. So, we need to manage our time.

I do not want to appear like I am curtailing hon. Members when they are asking questions. Since it is timed for forty-five minutes, how we use it, is up to us, by ensuring that we are efficient, precise and to the point when we ask our questions.

Please, hon. Members, be guided accordingly.

Mr Haimbe: On a point of order, Madam.

Madam Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Haimbe: Madam Speaker, I rise on a point of order pursuant to Standing Order No. 207, Contempt of the House.

Madam Speaker, the point of order has been necessitated by the conduct of the hon. Member of Parliament for Lumezi, who appeared on a television programme last night, on Diamond Television, at 2130 hours.

Madam Speaker, during that programme, the hon. Member for Lumezi, made disparaging remarks against you, Madam Speaker, the presiding officer, following your decision to send the hon. Member out of the Chamber yesterday. Amongst the things that were said on the programme, included remarks whose import were that the Hon. Speaker was conducting the proceedings in a partial manner; that the Hon. Speaker harboured personal hate against the hon. Member for reasons known to the Hon. Speaker, according to the hon. Member.

Further, Madam Speaker, there was a suggestion that the Hon. Speaker detested the hon. Member on account of his hailing from the Eastern Province and Lumezi, in particular, amongst other allegations, which I can only describe as aimed at disparaging the Hon. Speaker, and indeed, the decorum of this House.

Madam Speaker, the point of order that I raise is to seek your guidance as to whether such conduct is acceptable and falls within the privileges enjoyed by the hon. Member, and, if not, whether that conduct amounts to contempt of the House in terms of Standing Order No. 207, punishable in accordance with the provisions of that Standing Order.

Madam Speaker, I submit.

Madam Speaker, before I sit, I have a copy of the interview duly downloaded, and with your permission, wish to lay the same on the Table of the House. I am most obliged.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kampyongo: On a procedural point of order, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: Is it on the point of order or what?

Mr Kampyongo: On the manner the point of order has been raised, Madam Speaker.


Mr Kampyongo: It is procedural and it is very critical.


Madam Speaker: Order!

Hon. Member, what procedure has been breached?

Mr Kampyongo: It is a point of procedure, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: What procedure has been breached?

Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, the point of procedure is that the hon. Minister of Justice is a member of the Committee on Privileges, Absences and Support Services and he raises an issue bordering on privileges, and already he is conflicted. We need to set the –


Mr Kampyongo: This august House operates on rules. What sort of justice will this particular hon. Member –


Mr Kampyongo: There is chaos, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: Hon. Members, let us listen so that we can give proper guidance. Proceed, hon. Member.

Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, I have no problem with the reasons cited, but the manner and the person who has raised this point of order because he is a member of the critical Committee which looks at matters of privileges.

I seek your serious guidance.

Madam Speaker: Let the hon. Minister say something.

Mr Haimbe: Madam Speaker, that point of procedure, with due respect to the hon. Opposition Whip, is not sustainable and is not covered in the Standing Orders. However, Madam Speaker, there is precedent, firstly –


Madam Speaker: Can we have order? The accusations were made and the rules of natural justice require that the hon. Minister says something before I make my ruling.


Mr Haimbe: Thank you, Madam Speaker. There is a precedent that has been set. In fact, just yesterday, the Committee on Privileges, Absences, and Support Services was sitting on a complaint made by the Leader of the Opposition against the Chief Whip. The Leader of the Opposition is a member of the Committee on Privileges, Absences, and Support Services.


Mr Haimbe: Obliged. In any event, Madam Speaker, the procedure does not in any way prevent or gag a member of the Committee from raising an issue. The question is whether or not I will sit at the material time should the Hon. Madam Speaker decide to refer this point of order to the Committee on Privileges, Absences, and Support Services.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Haimbe: At the material time, should that happen, then I can be excused from sitting on the determination of that matter. So, I am very certain that the hon. Opposition Whip is aware of the procedure as it is. That should not stand as a purpose or a means of gagging me from raising matters that are clearly in contempt of this hon. House, and I am entitled to do so.  

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Haimbe laid the Compact Disk (CD) on the Table.

Madam Speaker: Thank you, very much. Let us not waste a lot of time on this issue. There was a point of order and then the hon. Member for Shiwang’andu raised another point of procedure on a point of order, which is not allowed by our Standing Orders. So, under the circumstance –


Madam Speaker: Please, hon. Members, do not engage the Speaker when she is making a point. What is happening to this House?

So, the position is that the ruling is reserved on this point of order so that I can study the issue and also view the audio that has been laid on the Table of the House.

Hon. Members, rest assured that I have no favourite hon. Members of Parliament here. I cherish all of you, and whichever hon. Member of Parliament transgresses will be visited by the sanctions as appropriately required and prescribed by our Standing Orders. So, the ruling is reserved.

Can we make progress.




The Minister of Lands and Natural Resources (Mr Muchima) (on behalf of the Minister of Education (Mr Syakalima)): Madam Speaker, I wish to thank you most sincerely for according me the opportunity to issue a ministerial statement to this –

Hon. PF Member: Where is your mask?


Mr Muchima: My voice will not be very clear.


Mr Muchima: Do you wear a mask when eating?

Madam Speaker: Order, order!

Hon. Members, please, please, please, can we learn to speak through the presiding officer? If the acting hon. Minister has challenges with the mask, he can ask for permission to take off the mask so that he speaks while he is there. I am sure he is 2 cm away from all of us. When he resumes his seat, he can put on his mask. So, please, hon. Minister, you have been given permission not to use the mask for the time being, as you deliver your statement.

Mr Muchima: I thank you, Madam Speaker. My voice is, actually, challenging. So, I thank you for that protection.

Madam Speaker, I wish to thank you most sincerely for according me this opportunity to make a ministerial statement to this august House on the Steps Being Undertaken to Ensure Learning Safety in Schools.

Madam Speaker, I also thank Mr Twambo Mutinta, the hon. Member of Parliament for Itezhi Tezhi Constituency for raising this matter of urgent public importance. This shows that education provision and learner safety should not be left to the ministry of education alone. It is our collective responsibility to manage the affairs of learners both in school and at home.

Madam Speaker, it is with deep regret that I stand before you to deliver this ministerial statement to the august House regarding the incidences where four secondary school girls were defiled, two Early Childhood Education (ECE) learners died after encountering hazardous objects in their respective school environments and four boys drowned in a pit while originally undergoing cadet drills.

Madam Speaker, allow me to mourn with my fellow parents on the loss of our learners as a result of these school accidents related deaths. The death accidents have greatly undermined my ministry’s policy mandate, “Educating our Future”.

Madam Speaker, the recent happenings in some of our schools are a source of great concern not only to the general public, but also to the Ministry of Education. The Ministry of Education is entrusted with the responsibility of looking after our learners as the second parent while they are in schools. The safety of learners and the provision of safe school environments are of paramount importance to the ministry because school is their second home. It is regrettable that human life was lost while in the custody of school authorities. This should not have happened.

Madam Speaker, ministry structures entail that our head teachers take responsibility, as immediate second parents, to ensure the safety of learners while in their custody. The school management is responsible for ensuring and safeguarding a school environment that is child friendly and a safe environment for both learners and staff. This applies to all learning institutions regardless of whether they are public aided, community or private institutions.

The school managers and their management teams are with learners on a daily basis whenever they are in school. It is, therefore, expected that top on their priority list is the safety of learners, as they provide an environment which is safe and conducive for teaching and for learning.

Madam Speaker, the Ministry of Education takes the safety of learners very seriously and as an apex priority. The ministry has put in place various policies and measures to ensure safety of all learners, educators and relevant stakeholders, while in schools.

Madam Speaker, schools are critical in instilling discipline and ensuring safety, thus codes of conduct for learners at all public aided, community and private schools cannot be over emphasised.

As earlier stated, schools are directly responsible for providing an environment that is conducive to the delivery of quality teaching and learning by, among other things, promoting the rights and safety of all learners, teachers and parents.

Madam Speaker, learners spend more time in school than anywhere else. So, it becomes a vital task for school authorities, teachers and parents to ensure their safety in the best possible way. There is a need, therefore, to make sure that every child is safe within school premises as well as outside.

Madam Speaker, as the Ministry of Education, we have written and communicated to all schools, urging them to follow safety measures which we have put in place. The ministry has also gone a step further to enforce such measures through inspections which are undertaken by standard officers. This ensures that the measures are adhered to.

Madam Speaker, the recent happenings in our schools have, indeed, been a wakeup call for the ministry. Our officers on the ground were sent to investigate the circumstances under which lives were lost amongst our learners. The ministry is currently scrutinising the reports that were received over the incidences and will take appropriate action against those head teachers and their management teams that will be found wanting in public schools. For private schools, the ministry will be left with no choice, but to deregister them where negligence is established.

Madam Speaker, allow me to conclude by stating that the ministry will continue, in earnest, to protect the rights of learners in all categories of our schools as provided for in the Education Act No. 23 of 2011. The success of these efforts relies, largely, on collective efforts of parents, communities and schools to ensure that all learners are safe and realise their full potential whilst in school.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: Hon. Members are now free to ask questions on points of clarification on the ministerial statement given by the acting hon. Minister of Education.

Mr Mwambazi (Bwana Mkubwa): Madam Speaker, –

Mr Kapyanga: On a point of order.

Madam Speaker: Before the hon. Member for Bwana Mkubwa asks his question, there is a point of order request by the hon. Member for Mpika. What is the point of order?

A point of order is raised

Mr Kapyanga: Thank you so much, Madam Speaker, for the opportunity given to me to raise a point of order.

Madam Speaker, yesterday, the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) announced the floor price for the 2022 marketing season. Information on the ground right now is that the same FRA has reduced the number of satellite depots. For example, in Mpika, we used to have more than fifteen satellite depots where farmers would take their crops for sale to the FRA. It has reduced that number to eight, which means that farmers now will be moving long distances to take crops to the nearest satellite depot.

Madam Speaker, this will threaten our national food security because farmers will resort to selling to briefcase buyers who will be following them in their localities. This will actually hamper the efforts by the Government to buy crops and store for food security.

Madam Speaker, therefore, I raise a point of order on the hon. Minister of Agriculture. Is he in order to remain quiet when factors that threaten the food security of our nation are being actualised by the FRA?

Madam Speaker: Hon. Member for Mpika, that does not qualify to be a point of order. You have not stated what rule of procedure or regulation has been breached. So, that issue does not arise and cannot be brought up as a point of order. Hon. Members, you know the procedures and how you can raise issues of that nature. Please, direct your question to the hon. Minister of Agriculture as required by our Standing Orders.

Mr Mwambazi: Madam Speaker, thank you for allowing the people of Bwana Mkubwa to ask the acting hon. Minister of Education a follow-up question.

Madam Speaker, it is, indeed, very sad that we continue to lose young lives in such a manner in these schools. This, unfortunately, has not started today. These children’s lives are lost while they are with the people who are supposed to take care of them, the teachers. What measures has the ministry put in place to ensure that some of these vices do not recur? What punitive measures does the ministry mete out to teachers who continue to neglect children as they go out to do some of those activities?

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for Bwana Mkubwa for that question. Indeed, it is a sad moment for us, and these happenings are regrettable.

Madam Speaker, right now, the instructor is under the police and investigations are going on. As we said, this is a wakeup call for the ministry. We need to inspect all our institutions and make sure that our learners are safe. We have to put measures in place to protect them. As we speak now, the pit has even been fenced off.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Mutinta (Itezhi-Tezhi): Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister for the ministerial statement. One of the things I understand are causing all these challenges for young people is the weak legal framework. Of the most importance is the lack of a Child Code Bill and the lack of completion of the National Child Safeguarding Guidelines. I know that they were being worked on by the previous Government, but were yet to be completed.

Madam Speaker, I would like to ask the hon. Minister to just make me understand where we are in terms of completing these two important documents. I know that once they are completed, they will give us a firm ground on how to mitigate some of these atrocities on children at school level and respond to those challenges we are facing on a day to day basis in terms of the protection and safety of young people.

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, indeed, the process to bring these Bills to Parliament has not yet been completed, but rest assured that, very soon, they will be brought to Parliament. It is quite important to put these Bills in place.

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Rev. Katuta (Chienge): Madam Speaker, I would also like to mourn with the parents who have lost their children under such circumstances.

Madam Speaker, can the Government introduce a course where teachers could be trained in safety for children? These accidents were not caused deliberately. So, will the Government consider adding that component into the training for teachers?

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for that important question.

Madam, safety in schools is key. As we have said, this is a wakeup call and the ministry will, indeed, look at it seriously. However, in the accident that happened in Mazabuka, for instance, a trained instructor was involved. So, it was just unfortunate, but we now want to extend this to other areas and make it like it used to be when we used to have physical instructors or teachers. That should be put into action so that we protect the lives of our pupils.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Chanda (Kanchibiya): Madam Speaker, there are reports of schools that are still administering corporal punishment on pupils. What is the Government’s position on this matter?

Madam Speaker: Order!

That was not in the ministerial statement. The hon. Member is extending it because it was not covered.

Mr Chanda: Madam Speaker, with your indulgence; I am looking at child safety and child beating. Sometimes, the perpetrators of corporal punishment which children have been subjected to in some of these schools are the school authorities. Some of the reports are very recent.

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, corporal punishment was abolished. Due to what we have learnt, as we speak, all schools have been instructed, especially as regards the issue of “watering” I do not know how I can put it, but it is punishment that is like military training. They have been given strict instructions to not take children to dangerous areas. This has to be observed by all schools.

Madam Speaker, I remember the time when I, Hon. Dr Musokotwane and others used to go school. Teachers used to put pencils in-between our fingers and even whipped us, but that is no longer admissible. This time, a child’s rights are observed. You cannot do that even to your own child.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mrs Chonya (Kafue): Madam Speaker, I commiserate with the affected schools and families on the happenings, and also welcome the hon. Minister’s statement. However, in his statement, he says that public schools that will be found wanting will be dealt with while private schools will be deregistered. How will public schools be dealt with so that it is not a question of double standards in the way we deal with these issues wherever they occur?

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, public schools regulations adhere to instructions that are very clear. Private schools might not follow as such. Hence, in order to ensure that private schools adhere to instructions, we need to stiffen their punishment. That is why these schools can be closed down. As for Government schools, we follow the normal procedures. The teachers can be arrested or even be dismissed. That is the variance.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Mumba (Kantanshi): Madam Speaker, the Acting hon. Minister of Education has called these sad incidences as a ‘wake-up call’. What immediate steps are being taken clearly to respond to all the happenings in all these schools and, maybe, he can shed more light on why the ministry had relaxed over the inspections he referred to.

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, without what happened, the Government took it that everything was normal and actually went to sleep. Now, after losing lives like that, we need to be on our toes and put strict measures like it is done in the mines where the issue of safety is key. So, as the Government, and the Ministry of Education in particular, we have found it prudent to make it a measure that should be adhered to strictly by all schools. In addition, we are going to put an inspectorate team in place to institute the measure.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Lubozha (Chifubu): Madam Speaker, I thank you for giving the people of Chifubu an opportunity.

Madam Speaker, I would like to find out whether there is any form of compensation by the Government to bereaved families in events where some of these deaths and injuries that are caused to school children are as a result of negligence on the part of the Government or our teachers.

Business was suspended from 1040 hours until 1100 hours.

[MADAM SPEAKER in the Chair]

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, before business was suspended, the hon. Member for Chifubu wanted to know whether there is some form of compensation by the Government to bereaved families in events where some deaths and injuries which are caused to school children are as a result of negligence on the part of the Government or our teachers.


Madam Speaker, as I said, it was a wake-up call. The Government has not put up measures such as insurance to protect learners. However, now that we have seen the risk that we are exposed to, we may need to put insurance measures in place. Off course, if they moved the court and then there was a court order after coming up with whom exactly was negligent; was it by order or instruction or by the child itself, looking at the age? There are so many things that are involved. At the moment, we cannot say yes, because there is no such provision. We have to know how to explore more to see how we can mitigate this risk that is happening everywhere.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr C. M. Mpundu (Chembe): Madam Speaker, child safety in schools can never be overemphasised. The hon. Minister has talked of inspections that are done by Standard Officers. How often are these inspections done? Is it quarterly or annually?

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, inspection is supposed to be done quarterly and continuously, but due to monetary constraints, it was not considered to be key when we were looking at issues of desks, recruitment of teachers and many others. It was put aside and yet it was one other area that was very critical and important. As we put it, it was a wakeup call. Now, it will be put on the agenda and also receive attention from the Government.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Tayengwa (Kabwata): Madam Speaker, now that the hon. Minister has stated that safety inspection is supposed to be done quarterly, how safe are our children in school? Then the other thing is –

Madam Speaker: Hon. Member, it is one question per hon. Member.

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, pupils are safe. The incidences were just accidents. Accidents are unpredictable. They can happen anytime, but from now onwards, all head teachers or head mistresses in all schools have been instructed to be on alert, especially when dealing with the underage like those below ten or fifteen. Extra care has to be exercised.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Chibombwe (Bahati): Madam Speaker, it is a good thing that the dambo, or is it the pond, was fenced off in Nega Nega and the hon. Minister has admitted that his Government went to sleep.

Madam Speaker, it is not only in Nega Nega, or is it Nanga, where our pupils swim in dambos and rivers. This happens almost everywhere, especially in rural constituencies. So, what measures is the Government putting in place to avoid similar occurrences? Has the hon. Minister given a directive to school managements to prevent children from swimming in rivers and ponds?

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for Bahati. Following that question, there will be extra care. Extra care should be undertaken now. For sure, we went to sleep and so did previous Governments as regards the need to put up serious measures. Now we need to identify all areas of danger and then see how we can safeguard our people and make sure that they are safe. There will be no pupil who will be alone, especially on assignments like physical education or those cadet issues. We now have to be serious and review what has been put in place so that we improve the safety of our pupils.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker gave the Floor to Mr Kolala but he was not available.

Mr Kamboni (Kalomo Central): Madam Speaker, after what happened, is there a plan to evaluate the punishment cadets can give to students? Quite often, cadet punishment is given by fellow students. There is a need to evaluate them so that they are compatible with school rules. So, my question is: Is there now a deliberate intention to evaluate what cadets can give as punishment and who should give that punishment so that we prevent a repeat what happened?

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, indeed, there is a need for review. You see, cadet is a replica of military training. It is not as intense as the military, but prepares one’s mind to be almost like a military officer.

Madam Speaker, there are rules, but if those rules are being over exercised or implemented, we need to scale down and re-look at them. We have learnt a lesson. Losing a child is not an easy issue. It has taught us a lesson as a Government. We need to re-look at it to see whether we can scale down on some of the training requirements.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Ms Lungu (Chawama): Madam Speaker, as the Government looks further into this possible case of negligence, it must also be noted that since the free education policy was introduced, there has been a higher number of students enrolling into these classrooms. In some cases, there are more than a 100 students per classroom. What measures has the Government put in place to ensure that teachers are well prepared for these added responsibilities?

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, we should thank the New Dawn Government for the increased rate of enrolment. School has become attractive because of what it has put in place, and with prudent fiscal measures, there will be money to also increase the numbers of teachers to meet the demands of the increased challenges.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.




38. Mr Shakafuswa (Mandevu) asked the Minister of Infrastructure, Housing and Urban Development:

     (a)  why Phase III of the L400 Road Project in Mandevu Parliamentary Constituency has stalled; and

     (b)  When the project will resume.

The Minister of Infrastructure, Housing and Urban Development (Eng. Milupi): Madam Speaker, the outstanding works on Phase III of the L400 Road Project, which also included works in Mandevu Parliamentary Constituency, have stalled due to the decision by the Government to cancel outstanding loan disbursements towards the project in order to keep the country’s debt at sustainable levels.

Madam Speaker, the works on the project will resume once the Treasury secures alternative funding for the project.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Shakafuswa: Madam Speaker, Mandevu Constituency hosts this Legislative House where all the Budgets are passed, but when it comes to getting a share of development, it is overlooked.

Madam Speaker, if you drove on roads in some of the constituencies in Lusaka, such as Kabwata, you would be proud that the constituency is very developed, but the opposite is true for Mandevu. Our plea or question is: Can the hon. Minister assure the people of Mandevu that once funding is secured, the roads in the constituency will be done?

Eng. Milupi: Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for the follow-up question in which he seems to indicate that there was a disparity in the allocation of developmental projects even within Lusaka and even in constituencies represented by hon. Members of the former ruling party.

Madam Speaker, I can assure the hon. Member that under the New Dawn Administration of his Excellency the President, Mr Hakainde Hichilema, who keeps talking about equity, there will be no discrimination between Mandevu and other constituencies here in Lusaka.

Madam Speaker, let me give just a bit more information on the project. The contractor on the L400 Road Project was AVIC International Project Engineering Company and it was financed through a loan from the Exim Bank of China amounting to US$204,940,178.80. So far, approximately 144 km have been surfaced out of a total length of 180.582 km identified for the project. Works on the outstanding kilometres of the project have stalled, as I said, due to the necessary cancellation.

Madam Speaker, you will also understand that one of the top priorities of the New Dawn Government is to manage the debt levels and part of the debt level was what had already been disbursed. If we had kept what had not yet been disbursed on the books, we would have ended up with a much higher debt level. It would have made managing it very difficult. So, of necessity, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning had to put to a halt all the undisbursed loans.

Madam Speaker, major roads that were envisaged for improvement under Phase III of the L400 Road Project included the Airport, Katima Mulilo, which is in Mandevu, Makishi, Thabo Mbeki and Manchinchi roads. A total of US$174,027,714.60 has been certified on the project out of which US$106,053,987.60 has been paid to the contractor leaving a balance of US$67,973,727.

Madam Speaker, the Government’s assurance to all hon. Members of Parliament is that when resources become available, it will have no favoured places. All places will be looked at on the basis of their need.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: I have observed that we need to mask up as we debate. It appears we are growing tired of face masks. I will ask the Clerk’s office to liaise with the Ministry of Health to indicate whether we still need face masks or not in view of the fact that most hon. Members are vaccinated.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mutale (Chitambo): Madam Speaker, I know that Mandevu is almost in the Central Business District (CBD) of Lusaka. The hon. Minister would agree with me that Makishi and Garden roads are in very bad states. My question is: What urgent interventions will he carry out on those roads? Will he, at least, mend those potholes or something to just ensure that they are motorable? Some roads have got to states where one cannot even drive on them.

Eng. Milupi: Madam Speaker, there are a number of roads which are in not in good condition, including the one that he has talked about. The intervention will occur when we have resources to put into those roads. This includes even the main highways like the one which leads to his constituency, the Serenje to Mpika. It is in a bad condition. This Government is fully aware of these things. That is why it is working very hard to see to it that it can conclude discussions with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and creditors which will give my colleague, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning an opportunity to come back to the House, as we have always said.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Shakafuswa: Madam Speaker, my last comment is just to emphasise that when we ask these questions, we do so on behalf of the people. We ask the New Dawn Government, our Government, in order to compel it to act.

Madam Speaker, I am a sad man right now because I continuously get the same answers that do not seem to provide solutions. My plea is that as the Government finds money. If it does not have the money, it should bring a Supplementary Budget so that we allocate more funds and projects can begin to roll-out.

Madam Speaker: That was a comment. So, we make progress.

Mr Kampyongo indicated desire to ask a question.

Madam Speaker: Hon. Member for Shiwang’andu, we have moved. I have closed because of a lack of time. We have some other work to be done. The question was asked by the hon. Member for Mandevu in relation to a road in Mandevu. The questions have been answered. From where I sit, I heard repetitive questions and answers. So, I decided to make progress.




Mr Kangombe (Sesheke): Madam Speaker, I beg to move that this House do adopt the Report of the Committee on Energy, Water Development and Tourism for the First Session of the Thirteenth National Assembly laid on the Table of the House on Monday, 13thJune, 2022.

Madam Speaker: Is the Motion seconded?

Ms Mulenga (Kalulushi): I beg to second the Motion.

Mr Kangombe: Madam Speaker, in line with its terms of reference as contained in Standing Orders No. 197 and 198 of the National Assembly Standing Orders 2021, the Committee undertook a study of Water Resource Management in Zambia.

Madam Speaker, I am confident that hon. Members have had an occasion to apprise themselves with the contents of this report. I will, therefore, merely highlight some excerpts from it.

Madam Speaker, the Committee invited various stakeholders to provide both oral and written submissions on the topical issue. The findings of the Committee arising from its interactions with these stakeholders are outlined in the Committee's report.

Madam Speaker, let me begin by stating that water plays a critical role in fostering a healthy society and enhances the country's human capital, in addition to serving as a direct input in all economic activities. Therefore, given its enormous contribution towards the country's social and economic development, it is imperative that, as a nation, we prioritise water resource management.

Madam Speaker, during its interaction with stakeholders, the Committee learnt that catchment protection is paramount towards the sustenance of water resources, both locally and in the wider river system. The rationale behind catchment protection measures is to ensure that sensitive water catchment areas are protected from degradation and to restore affected areas. However, the Committee notes that despite the Water Resource Management Act No. 21, 2011, providing for this, no area has been declared a protected area since the law was promulgated more than ten years ago.

In this regard, the Committee strongly urges the Government to undertake a study to establish which water recharge areas are at risk and institute protection measures to prevent further deterioration of these very important ecosystems.

Madam Speaker, the partial implementation of the provisions of the Water Resource Management Act has presented serious gaps in implementing effective water resource management in the country. During the course of its tour, the Committee visited selected catchment restoration sites in the Southern Province. The Committee noted the tremendous efforts being undertaken by local communities in Pemba and Magoye to restore water recharge areas, through water user associations. The area of concern though is the failure by the Government to actualise and implement the legal framework through statutory instruments in order to operationalise the water governance structures which include the catchment councils, sub-catchment councils and water users associations, as provided for under the Water Resource Management Act No.21, 2011.

Madam Speaker, while the Committee notes that the establishment of these structures will require colossal financial resources, it is of the view that rather than wait for a lump sum, the Government should implement this in a phased manner, starting with those areas that are at greatest risk of degradation.

Madam Speaker, the Committee notes that most of the challenges in the water sector are as a result of the failure to enforce stipulated regulations by relevant authorities. For instance, there is in existence a Statutory Instrument (SI) on Water, Protection of Public Stream and Sources of Water Supply Regulation of 2000 which aims at regulating the disruption of water in river banks. This not notwithstanding, Madam Speaker, there is evidence of encroachment on headwaters and riverbanks through uncontrolled housing developments in upstream areas as well as sand mining activities that are likely to have far reaching adverse effects on both ecosystems and communities living near the water bodies.


Madam Speaker, the Committee, therefore, strongly urges the Government to ensure that this SI is enforced to deter people from undertaking any activities near water bodies. The Committee further recommends that members of the public be sensitised on the need to protect water resources.

Madam Speaker, the Committee notes, with dismay, that the Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA) is incapacitated in terms of human and financial resources.

Madam Speaker, it was disturbing for the Committee to learn that WARMA is operating at half the approved staff establishment. Due to the limited human resource, it is unable to monitor activities around the country, some of which are leading to severe degradation of water bodies. The Committee strongly recommends that the Government provides significant financial resources to enable WARMA to fully discharge its functions.

Madam Speaker, another matter of concern to the Committee is the failure by water utility companies to acquire title deeds for their properties. This is a matter of serious concern because some of the richest water recharge areas are sitting on land that is not titled and is heavily encroached. During the Committee's tour of the Lukanga Water and Sanitation Company, it was established that the well fields domiciled in Makululu Compound in Kabwe are among the richest in the country.

Sadly, houses and other structures have been built in the area and supplied with electricity by Zesco Ltd. Unfortunately, in the absence of title deeds, the utility company has no legal mandate to compel illegal settlers to vacate the land. In light of the above, the Committee urges the Government to prevail on the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, together with the water utility companies, to expedite the process of securing title deeds without further delay.

In conclusion, the Committee is grateful to you, Madam Speaker, and the Clerk of the National Assembly for the guidance and support rendered to it during the consideration of the report. The Committee also greatly appreciates the input of the witnesses it interacted with during its deliberations.

With these few remarks, I urge all hon. Members to support the report of the Committee.

Madam Speaker, I beg to move.

Madam Speaker: Does the seconder wish to speak now or later?

Ms Mulenga: Now, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker, I rise to support the Motion to adopt the Report of the Committee on Energy, Water Development and Tourism so ably moved by the Chairperson.

Madam, one of the issues that this Committee noted is the dilapidated water infrastructure. Your Committee was given an opportunity to tour the Central Province and the Copperbelt Province where they visited some of the utility companies. Your Committee noted the dilapidated infrastructure. As a result, these utility companies are facing high non-revenue water.

Madam Speaker, this Committee notes, with a lot of dismay, that due to the high non-revenue water, these companies were running at a loss. We also noted, as a Committee, that the chemical treatment of water was also high. The water lost due to these leakages at different intervals would also lead to contamination of water which was going into these communities due to old infrastructure.

Madam Speaker, in this regard, the Committee recommends that in the short and medium-term, water utility companies should monitor and keep up with the maintenance works on their water infrastructure to reduce the non-revenue water. For as long as these measures are not put in place, we will have serious problems.

This Committee further urges the Government to put up an approach to replace all water and sanitation infrastructure in the country.

Madam, one of the other issues that your Committee noted is the outdated water policy. As we speak, we noted that the policy being used is the 2010 National Water Policy. This Committee recommends that the Government should, as a matter of urgency, review the 2010 National Water Policy and, in the process, take into account the different policies that impinge on the effective water resource management in the country. Further, your Committee recommends the policy should boldly pronounce aspects of climate change and gender.

Madam Speaker, the other issue that your Committee noted with a lot of dismay is that there is little or no research at all. It also observes that research has not prioritised anything in the water sector. This gap hinders effective water resource management. It is, therefore, the wish of this Committee that the Government invests a lot of money in research and development in the water sector to form evidence-based decision-making and effective water resource management.

Madam Speaker, the Committee further urges the Government to create collaborative partnerships with research institutes and academia, for example, the University of Zambia (UNZA) and other relevant stakeholders, to conduct in-country and out-country research studies.

Madam Speaker, I beg to second.

Mr Mwila (Mufulira): Madam Speaker, thank you very much for this opportunity to contribute to debate on this Motion as I support and congratulate the mover, the seconder and, indeed, the entire Committee.

Madam Speaker, I observed some issues when I went through this report, especially, that it touches on water. We, the people of Mufulira, have a lot of reservations on the way the utility company that is tasked with providing water to our district functions.

Madam Speaker, I, first of all, want to comment on the observations contained in the report at page 11 where the Committee notes that there is no collaboration between local authorities and water utility companies when it comes to allocations of pieces of land to citizens. This is a very big problem and it is causing water shortages in households because local authorities create pieces of land and offer them to communities without knowing when they can move in to lay pipes and supply water.

Madam Speaker, what we are observing is that people move in to buy plots and construct houses without a supply of water. They then start to provide water for themselves by sinking boreholes and then push utility companies to provide water where they are already settled. Sometimes, as utility companies lag behind, they find problems as regards where to lay pipes because people would have constructed in unregulated manner, and the population is increasing everywhere.

Madam Speaker, I support this observation and urge the Government to put in place the legal framework that will compel collaboration between local authorities and water utility companies so that no piece of land is allocated without collaboration. It should ensure that the utility company in the area has been to the site and has also provided water before citizens can start to construct. Otherwise, at the rate we are going, we will end up having more people in dwelling places without clean water being supplied because there is no collaboration. The legal framework is needed and I urge the Government to look into that.

Madam Speaker, at page 18, there is also reference to the stakeholder meeting that the Committee had in Chingola. I read that the Mulonga Water Supply and Sanitation Company Limited informed the meeting that it supplies water to Chingola, Chililabombwe and Mufulira for nine to ten hours per day. Speaking on behalf of the people of Mufulira Constituency, I do not know where this water is supplied for those nine to ten hours because, in our case, water supply is switched on at 0600 hours and exactly that same time again, there is no water. The most we have for a day is four hours.

Madam Speaker, maybe water is supplied for those hours in Chingola or Chililabombwe, but in Mufulira, there is a very big problem. To receive water between nine and ten hours is something we just dream of. I urge the utility company to improve in terms of the hours that it supplies water. However, I know the challenge it is facing, which is also contained in the report, in terms of funding.

Madam Speaker, the problem is that there is limited funding to water utility companies and so, even when they know what they want to do, they are incapacitated. The problem is further compounded by the fact that most of the funding in the water sector, as the report highlights, is donor-supported. This is a problem because there are so many conditions to be met by the water utility companies before they can access funding from donors.

In the meantime people need water and infrastructure replaced. However, perhaps we also need to build capacity in utility companies to prepare proposals in order to access funding that donors have made available. Otherwise, without capacity to prepare bankable proposals to access the money that has been made available, they will keep struggling. For years and years, funds have been put up, but utility companies have not been able to access them because they have probably not made convincing proposals in order to access that funding.

So, in this area, I urge the Government to increase its allocation to water utility companies because it is easier to access funding that is provided in our National Budget than the funding that has to come from donors due to many conditions attached. Meanwhile, people are suffering and need water.

Madam Speaker, I also want to render my voice to the issues at page 1, referring to the vandalism of Zesco Limited service cables. Again, this is the experience and the suffering we are going through in Mufulira, day in day out where, people would sleep and when they wake up, they do not have power. They think it is load shedding or power cut only to find out that the service cables have been stolen. There is rampant theft of Zesco Limited service cables at domestic level. The problem is that even when the theft is reported to Zesco Limited, some households go three to six months without that cable being replaced. So, many places are being put in the dark because of the theft of these service cables. All the security wings, I am sure, are aware.

Madam Speaker, I support the fact that the onus is now on Zesco Limited to change from using copper cables to aluminium cables because what is attracting the thefts is the copper that is contained in the service cables. So, in order to stop this theft, Zesco Limited must be advised, as a matter of urgency, to do away with service cables that use copper wires and replace them with those that use aluminium; then there will be no incentive for anyone to go for those aluminium ones.

There is also a need to inspect and check these scrap metal dealers because there is a market somewhere where these cables are being sold and if these scrap metal dealers are not monitored to see where they are getting their scrap or copper scrap, young men are being enticed to go in the night and cut cables anyhow and plunge communities into the dark and also affect the water supply system.

Madam Speaker, this is a big problem in Mufulira and, I am sure, on the Copperbelt. The security wings are aware. However, what is attracting the thefts is the copper that is contained in the cables. As a matter of urgency, let us move to the use of aluminium cables in order to sort-out this problem.

Madam Speaker, once again, I support this Motion.

Rev. Katuta (Chienge): Madam Speaker, I thank the mover and the seconder of this important Motion and, on behalf of the people of Chienge, I would like add a voice to the debate on the Floor of the House.

Madam Speaker, it is a pity that most of these visits that are taken by Committees are limited to urban and peri-urban areas. I wish this Committee had visited far flung areas like Chienge to see how people suffer when it comes to water.

Madam Speaker, in Chienge, people drink water which is contaminated with salt as the area sits on a salt belt. People suffer and die from diseases which doctors do not understand as there is no equipment to carry out tests. Doctors do not know what kills these people. I do believe it is the kind of water they drink.

Madam Speaker, as much as I appreciate that we have boreholes in some areas, we have never had tap water since independence. Our people in Chienge are really affected. Women are forced to leave their beds around 0400 hours to go and fetch water from crocodile infested rivers.

Madam Speaker, my appeal to this Government is that the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, the Ministry of Energy, the Ministry of Green Economy and Environment and the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources work together. When you look at the Kafubu Stream, you find that houses are being built just in that stream.

Madam Speaker, when I was growing up in Ndola, on the Copperbelt, those structures were never there. However, you can see, as the previous speakers alluded to, that Zesco Limited still goes and connects them to power. This is why I asked that the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, the Ministry of Energy, the Ministry of Green Economy and Environment and the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources work together and stop this. Once people get connected, they feel entitled to sit on those water tables, like what we have been seeing.

Madam Speaker, let me give another example. Just here at the Natural Resources Development College (NRDC), there are issues affecting the water table we have for Lusaka. My worry is that the Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA) is not being funded adequately. It needs to have more staff that can be established in all districts. Maybe the problem that we are talking about will not affect the whole nation.

For example, in Chienge, there was a time when a mine from the Democratic Republic of Congo was polluting the Luwau River where the people of Luwau Ward fetch water. By the time the people were reporting to the area hon. Member of Parliament who was asked to write a report, people had already drank that contaminated water. So, if WARMA could be established in each district, it would help the Government monitor pollution levels in waters.

Madam Speaker, in conclusion, we need home grown solutions to improve the supply of clean drinking water to our people. We can also find ways and means of obtaining funds from within the nation as opposed to depending on donors. We cannot depend on donors when the population is increasing to almost 18 million people. I think the best way to do this is for the Executive to come up with some home grown solutions to see to it that the people of Chienge and other rural areas are also provided with clean water.

Madam Speaker, with these few words, I would like to support this important Motion on the Floor of the House.

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Kampyongo (Shiwang’andu): Madam Speaker, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to also make a few contributions in support of the adoption of the report of the Committee on Energy, Water and Tourism ably moved by the Chairperson, the hon. Member of Parliament for Sesheke, and seconded by the hon. Member of Parliament for Kalulushi.

Madam Speaker, indeed, we also commend the Committee for picking on this topic of water that touches on life. As it is normally said, water is life. Indeed, it is a very critical topic the Committee picked on and it deserves to be commended.

Madam Speaker, it is important that most of the statutes that are already in place regarding the preservation of water sources are enforced and that the Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA), which has been given the mandate to look into these matters be capacitated.

Madam Speaker, its sister Committee, the Committee on Parastatal Bodies, also toured some of those infrastructures. In Kabwe, for example, it was also discovered that the water wells which supplement the main water source are not on title and this has posed a threat to this very important well field.

Madam Speaker, it is important that those that are responsible, as we also recommended in our Committee, ensure that these pieces of land are put on title to avoid encroachment from members of the public.

Madam Speaker, the dilapidation of equipment is another matter that was brought to our attention and we were able to witness it for ourselves, again, in Kabwe. What this calls for, is continuous investment in the water sector. We did realise, I think, this fact even when we were in the Government. I do recall that I was the last hon. Minister responsible for local government when it was in charge of utility companies through local authorities.

Madam Speaker, we realised the need for the Government to inject capital into the water sector, and that has seen the rise of the new Kafue Bulk Water Supply Project, for example, for Lusaka, which is now up and running. Now, when you compare and contrast what is obtaining at this Kafue facility with Kabwe, it is a sorry sight. It cannot be left to the water utility company because it has no capacity in as much as it operates on commercial basis.

Madam Speaker, I heard the hon. Member of Parliament for Chienge talk about Ndola on the Copperbelt. The cost of treating water that comes from the Kafubu River in Ndola, for example, is costly and the company is struggling to keep treating the water and supplying it to the people. So, that Kafubu Bulk Water Project is a very critical project which the Government must ensure is fulfilled because it will cushion the water supply challenges in Ndola, Kitwe, Luanshya and Masaiti districts on the Copperbelt, which have no water.

Madam Speaker, here in Lusaka, what is worse is the contamination levels of underground water. I think I am happy with the hon. Minister of Green Economy and Environment. The underground water or the water table in Lusaka is highly contaminated. There is a need, therefore, to ensure that the project that has been done by the Lusaka Water Supply and Sanitation Company (LWSC) along the Kafue Road is improved in other areas because it is only helping half way in terms of decontaminating the water table of Lusaka.

Further, I also want to appeal to the Ministry of Water Development and Sanitation, which is now a substantive ministry, to ensure that even as it pumps resources into those major cities, the new districts such as Shiwang’andu, Mungwi and others that have been created in the Western Province which are still waiting to have sustainable water supply must be considered. So, it is very important that a deliberate policy is put in place. I think the policy was started. We just need to input further and ensure these districts are also catered for. It is the same thing that the hon. Member for Chienge talked about.

Madam Speaker, we also want to remind the hon. Minister of Green Economy and Environment that apart from the protection of water bodies and water sources, the challenge of pollution, which the hon. Member of Parliament for Chienge mentioned, is also a major source of concern.

Madam Speaker, it would appear that the pieces of legislation are in place, but maybe there is no capacity in those that are given the mandate to ensure that our water bodies are protected and safeguarded against pollution.

Madam Speaker, a case in point is Kafue. We saw the derailment of some truck carrying undesirable substances that spilled in the Kafue River. Once that happens, you do not know how much damage it caused because the treatment of water is designed in different forms. So, when you have foreign substances like that, you would not know how much they will get to affect human life. Some effects could be long term and might not be detected in our people. Therefore, we would like the hon. Minister to ensure that he puts measures to protect water sources against pollution.

With these few remarks, I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Ms Sefulo (Mwandi): Madam Speaker, let me start by thanking the mover of the Motion, the hon. Member for Sesheke. Let me also say I support the adoption of the report of the Committee on Energy, Water Development and Tourism.

Madam Speaker, water is something that is very close to my heart being a Member of Parliament of a rural constituency where the supply of water is almost nonexistent. I have read from the report and the recommendations that have been made that are very good. However, I also want to bring to the attention of the hon. Minister another intervention that we can use as regards water.

Madam Speaker, to this day, I have never understood how we get flooded in Mwandi and, five months later, we do not have access to water. We should put interventions that will allow us to harvest the water that is there. We can even conduct a mini Kuomboka in Mwandi in areas like Magumwi. However, I am telling you right now that come October, there will be no water whatsoever and people will be subjected to having saline water. I stood in this House and said that when you grow up in Mwandi, chances of having issues with Blood Pressure (BP) are extremely high because of the saline water that is there when we get flooded. So, as regards all the interventions that are being made, we should also look at us managing or harvesting the water that comes down that just goes to waste.

Secondly, in the report, I also read about the creation of dams. That is very important. I spoke about water harvesting. This is also another thing that we can use in conjunction with the dams that were being spoken about by the Committee.

Madam Speaker, the Committee also reported that it went on foreign tours and, in the country that it visited, it learnt that there is a rural water supply system. In Zambia, we have the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) that specifically looks at rural electrification. I think we will urge the Government to look in this area to also have a specific body that looks at rural constituencies.

Madam Speaker, I can assure this House that the sentence, ‘I have gone to draw water’ when it comes to children in rural constituencies, has brought about a lot of teenage pregnancies. Just that sentence, ‘I have gone to draw water.’ Why is that? It is because children draw water 2km away.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Sefulo: What does that do? It puts a girl child at risk because of the distance that she has to travel to go and draw water. So, a drop of water in Lusaka and its value should be the same as the drop of water for a child that is growing up in Mwandi.

When we talk about access to water, we say water is life. However, when I go back to my constituency and look at the potential that there is, I wonder why we have not been given access to water. There is so much potential. We could grow winter maize if we had access to water. We could also do gardening.

Madam Speaker, I can assure this House that if there was improvement or proper investment in this sector, just Mwandi Constituency itself could feed this nation. Just in that regard, what do we lack? We lack water.

Madam Speaker, we urge the Government and all other hon. Members to make sure that come October, as we come to this House to debate the coming Budget, we make sure that there is proper allocation to water development in this country.

Madam Speaker, it is very sad, as we read this report, to hear about how much we have fresh water, but when it comes to water to drink, we have none at all.

With those few remarks, I support this report and encourage other hon. Members to adopt it.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Madam Speaker: That is the voice of a woman.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mtayachalo (Chama North): Madam Speaker, first and foremost, I want to take this opportunity to thank the Committee on Energy, Water Development and Tourism for having done a good job.

Madam Speaker, the water sector has been confronted with myriad challenges including low investments. That is why we have failed to exploit abundant water resources in our country especially that Zambia sits on 40 per cent of the water bodies in Southern Africa. Therefore, it is important that take radical measures, as a nation, to revolutionise the water sector if at all the majority of our people are to have access to safe drinking water.

Madam Speaker, it is sad that, fifty-eight years after independence, the majority of our people do not have access to safe drinking water. Actually, rural communities account for 53 per cent. For my sister there, the hon. Member of Parliament for Mwandi Constituency, coming from Chama North, which is a rural constituency, my heart bleeds to see that after fifty-eight years of independence, our people still share water with domestic and wild animals. In the process, housewives are victims of crocodile attacks.

Madam Speaker, in my constituency, we have lost many women amongst those who go to draw water from crocodile infested waters. I think this is a very sad development, Madam Speaker.

Madam, almost all the water utilities in this country, as highlighted in the report, face financial challenges. I think it is important that add my voice to the calls that as we prepare the 2023 National Budget, there is a need to increase the allocation towards the water sector if we have to resolve these challenges.

Madam Speaker, the other challenge the water utilities face is the Government itself. The Government is the major culprit because it does not pay for water which Government departments consume. So, how does it expect these water utilities to remain afloat? For Example, the Government owes K27 million to the Kafubu Water and Sanitation Company. So, how do we expect these water utilities to function?

Madam Speaker, it is my appeal to the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to endeavour to start dismantling debts which have been outstanding so that our water utility companies are able to invest these resources for the benefit of the people in our country.

Madam Speaker, coming from Chama North, the Eastern Water and Sanitation Company (EWSC) also has serious challenges. For example, in Chama, people only access water for, maybe, three to four hours in twenty-four hours because the EWSC has only two boreholes. Chama depends on electricity from Malawi, which is erratic. So, once there is no electricity, you find that there is no water in Chama. To date, Chama is not connected to the national electricity grid.

Madam Speaker, the other issue, which is the exorbitant chemicals to treat water, has also been a major challenge. I appeal to the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to provide incentives to water utility companies such that we can even wave duty on these important raw materials which are being bought at very high cost.

Madam Speaker, further, we must review Zesco Limited tariffs, especially on water utilities. I still feel that the electricity tariffs charged on water utilities is quite high. So, there is a need for the Government, through the Ministry of Energy, to try by all means to ensure that the tariffs charged by Zesco Limited to water utilities are minimised.

Madam Speaker, I also heard about the issue of the vandalism of Zesco Limited infrastructure. It is a very sad development that even when the law was amended to make vandalism penalty punitive for those who vandalise Zesco Limited infrastructure, it has continued to be on the rise.

Madam Speaker, I also believe that casualisation of labour at Zesco Limited has contributed to vandalism. What is happening is that people are being employed for six months and are cleared. Then another batch is brought in for another six months and is cleared again. So, there is no security of tenure. So, what is happening is that those are the same people who are involved in the vandalising of Zesco Limited installations because there is no guarantee of employment. So, this must be looked into very seriously.

Madam Speaker, I think we are enslaving our own people when we are saying that we have banned casualisation and yet this is what is happening in parastatal organisations. People are being employed for six months and then are removed. Another batch is brought in and the cycle continues. So, what do you expect from that person who is in the compound and is not employed who know all the systems of Zesco Limited? That is why cases of vandalism have been on the increase.

Madam Speaker, in conclusion, …

Rev. Katuta: On a point of order, Madam.

Madam Speaker: Order!

A point of order is raised. What procedure has been breached, hon. Member for Chienge?

Rev. Katuta: Madam Speaker, I rise on a point of order based on Standing Order No. 65 which talks about being factual. The speaker on the Floor of the House is insinuating that these casuals – he is not even using the word ‘maybe’ –are the ones who are stealing. He is insinuating that the casuals that are replaced at Zesco Limited are the ones who steal these cables. Is he in order to insinuate that the casuals are the ones who are stealing service cables? I need your serious ruling.

Madam Speaker: Order!

To the effect that it was a generalised statement not backed by facts, the hon. Member for Chama North is out of order. May the hon. Member for Chama North continue, but, please, learn to be factual.

Mr Mtayachalo: Madam Speaker, I thank you and I am well guided. I think I was speaking from a well-informed view.

Madam Speaker, in conclusion, on the Community Resource Boards (CRBs), I noticed that the Committee is urging the Government to expedite the employment of wildlife officers. This is very critical because, for instance, in Chama North and Chama South, cases of human/animal conflict have been increasing because of the shortage of wildlife officers. Therefore, the ones available are not able to cope with the volume of work. So, it is my appeal that more wildlife officers are employed as quickly as possible.

Madam Speaker, the other challenge that people who live in game management areas (GMAs) are facing is that although the Community Resource Boards (CRBs) get funding from hunting activities, the same does not trickle down to the ordinary people in communities and yet these are the people who look after these wild animals. At the end of the day, people in those game management areas do not have any benefit at all from the wildlife resources.

Madam Speaker, gone are the days when there was a deliberate policy, including during the federal Government, where, at least, some ration of game meat was given to the people who live in game management areas. That way, people realised that they would benefit from the wild life resources. So, there is an urgent need to employ wildlife officers as quickly as possible.

Madam Speaker, the other thing I have seen in the report is the issue of village scouts. Yes, village scouts … 

Madam Speaker: Order!

The hon. Member’s time expired.                

Madam Speaker: I had hoped you would yield some time so that we could accommodate the hon. Member for Chama South, your neighbour.


Madam Speaker: However, I will use my discretion.

Mr Mung’andu (Chama South): Madam Speaker, thank you very much for your kindness to allow the voice of Chama South to contribute to the debate on this important report.

Indeed, Madam Speaker, let me begin by appreciating your Committee for coming up with this well informed report.

Madam Speaker, I will first try to look at the land-use control measures that we have as a country. The mover of the Motion, Hon. Kangombe, indicated that we have a danger of encroachment on water recharge points, as a country.

Madam Speaker, if you look at the Forests Act and many other laws that regulate the utilisation of our land, you will discover that it might not be the inadequacy of the laws that the water recharge bodies and many other water sources are being interfered with. Mostly, it has to do with the enforcement of these laws.

Madam Speaker, take for example the issue to do with many areas where people have objected to timber logging. I will give an example of my constituency, Chama South. You saw the Ministry of Green Economy and Environment placing adverts for timber concessionaires to move on the ground and do timber logging even in very sensitive areas without consultation, for example, with the Ministry of Tourism.

These are the issues, Madam Speaker, on which, as parliamentarians, we should urge the Executive to critically work together and ensure that it finds lasting solutions.

Madam Speaker, other hon. Members have indicated that councils have allocated land even in areas which are supposed to be water protected areas. How is that possible? In our country, we have urban and regional planning laws which regulate and supervise all structures that are constructed. Even water utility companies themselves, before they put up a line or acquire land for anything, they have to get a permit from the planning authority. Now, how is it possible that people circumvent all these procedures and are able to end up with structures that are constructed on water recharge bodies or on areas where the water system is supposed to pass? All of that is happening because there is a lack of enforcement and collaboration amongst relevant authorities and departments that are supposed to consult each other before they implement projects. So, your report, Madam Speaker, indeed, is on point.

Madam Speaker, your report has indicated the need for the employment of wildlife scouts. As Hon. Mtayachalo indicated, the people of Chama are more concerned. Apart from the bad rainfall pattern that we experienced during the 2021/2022 farming season, people are sleeping outside because of a huge number of wild animals that are evading their fields.

Madam Speaker, in terms of control of these animals, it is becoming very difficult because the Department of National Parks and Wildlife does not have enough manpower not to mention enough equipment to control these wild animals.

Madam Speaker, in order for this Government to help our people, it needs to relook at the decision of the cancellation of hunting concessions. Why do I say so? Most of the people who man these game management areas (GMAs) are not employees of the Department of National Parks and Wildlife, but the Community Resource Boards.

In many camps, Madam Speaker, if you find fifteen wildlife officers, fourteen are village scouts and only one is a trained wildlife officer. The remuneration for these people comes from the hunting concessions that they share with the Government. Now that this Government has cancelled hunting concessions in prime areas, for example in Chifunda and Chikwa in my area, there will be no resources to pay those wildlife officers or village scouts. This will affect the conservation efforts that we have in these areas. It will also affect the morale of staff in terms of trying to prevent human-animal conflict.

Madam Speaker, when it comes to the lack of water, most rural areas are badly affected. A number of our women, particularly in Chama, are losing their lives to crocodiles, as Hon. Mtayachalo mentioned. Not less than three or four women in a year are lost to crocodile attacks as they try to fetch water. Where has been the problem? It is not that we have not made an effort as parliamentarians to take water, especially boreholes, to our people, but that there have been, at times, problems with our local authorities.

Madam Speaker, for example; three years ago, we approved boreholes. Madam Speaker, to date, Chama Council, despite us having tried to fight as hon. Members, has not provided these boreholes, and yet it has paid money to a contractor to drill boreholes. So, I urge the New Dawn Government to ensure that we look into this matter.

Madam Speaker, on urban water supply, Lusaka has the most contaminated water body underground. What we cannot understand is that water is a resource. Why is it that our utility companies cannot take advantage of this fact and ensure that they make money through the supply of water? Should we privatise the water sector so that private players should come in and tap into the huge potential that lies in this sector?

Madam Speaker, I say so because much of this water, we have learnt in your report, is being lost through none revenue water. This has to do with leakages and old pipes. Therefore, as much as we want the Government to inject money into the water sector, it is a self generating resource sector because many of our people need water and sewerage system. All we need is to put systems in place that ensure that we supervise and follow a vision so that water utility companies should can reinvest money as opposed to most of this revenue going into management fees and many other things that have to do with water management provision.

With this contribution, Madam Speaker, I would like to support your report.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: You do not have to exhaust all your minutes because we are looking at saving time.

Mr Mwambazi: Thank you, Madam Speaker, for giving me this chance to contribute to the debate on this report. Let me take this opportunity to thank my hon. Colleague, Hon. Kangombe, for this report.

Madam Speaker, water is life –

Mr Mutelo: On a point of order, Madam Speaker.

Rev. Katuta: Akulandafye!

Madam Speaker: Order!

There is a point of order. The hon. Member for Mitete is raising a point of order. What is the breach?

A point of order is raised.

Mr Mutelo: Thank you so much, Madam Speaker. I apologise to the hon. Member of Parliament who is on the Floor.

Madam Speaker, Standing Order No. 86 is on time for submission of notice for any business to be transacted in the House for a particular day or week. Standing Order No. 86(1) tells it all; whether it is the Vice-President, an hon. Minister or an hon. Member, they must give a notice. If it is before 1300 hours, it is deemed to be part of that day, but after that, it is for the next day.

Was the hon. Member of Parliament for Lumezi in order, without having given a notice for yesterday, to interject the procedural procession of Madam Speaker, based on this Standing Order?

I seek your serious ruling.

Madam Speaker: Thank you. That point of order, like the other one which was raised earlier, is reserved. They will be looked at together.

The hon. Member for Bwana Mkubwa may continue.

Mr Mwambazi: Madam Speaker, let me take this opportunity to just comment on the report, bearing in mind that time is running out.

Madam Speaker, water is life. As I speak, most of our constituencies have rationed, if not erratic, water supply. It is very important that after looking at this report which has been generated, the Government looks into certain pertinent issues to ensure that people have adequate water supply.

Madam Speaker, very important issues have been brought out in that report like the sustainable financial mechanisms, the development of adequate storage of water in our various localities and the review of the 2010 Water Policy.

Madam Speaker, let me make mention that it is also important that we get enhanced collaboration amongst ministries such as Lands and Natural Resources, Local Government and Rural Development and Water Development and Sanitation.

Madam Speaker, you see, most water bodies are being encroached. I think this has been submitted by one of the hon. Members. It is very important for us to protect our waters by ensuring enhanced collaboration so that some of our water bodies are not encroached.

Madam Speaker, let me also make mention that the legal framework needs to be looked at to ensure it speaks to what is happening on the ground. It is very important that the law is dynamic. If it is not dynamic and able to extinguish what is happening, then it is of no use. So, it is important that we enhance the legal framework on water issues in this country.

Madam Speaker, let me comment on the issue of enhanced and sustainable financing. Let us look at the Kafubu Dam, which is under construction. That is a US$445 million project and is targeted at catering for five districts which are Kafulafuta, Mpongwe, Luanshya, Masaiti and Bwana Mkubwa in Ndola District. 

Madam Speaker, as we speak, this project is at 78 per cent. So, we urge the Government, as it considers water projects, to look at this project because the little that is remaining, which is 22 per cent, if considered, can help these five districts to mitigate issues erratic water supply.

Madam Speaker, I beg that this report be adopted.

Madam Speaker, I thank you so much.

The Minister of Green of Green Economy and Environment: (Mr Nzovu): Madam Speaker, thank you very much for allowing me to make a few comments on your Committee’s report. My first reaction is to thank the Committee sincerely because this is a very technical report, and it did a very good research.

Madam Speaker, the triple planetary crisis of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution are with us. Water plays a very important role in securing our environment. It has been recognised in the Committee report that water availability in the country is on the decrease.

Madam Speaker, my trip around the country to look at the status of the environment and, in particular, sources of water and the forests which protect the headwaters of the rivers revealed that there is high degradation of the headwaters. This has resulted in the drying up of streams and rivers. Examples are in Mongu, Chililabombwe and Chongwe. Whereas there is a very big dam in Chongwe, it is no longer able to provide water to Chongwe residents throughout the year.

Madam Speaker, forests protect and provide water. Forests clean the environment. Indeed, forests ensure that water quality is protected.

Madam Speaker, the issue of pollution of water sources is another issue which we need to look at seriously. Right now, as we develop our country, there is pressure for mining activities and this pressure is mainly in ecologically sensitive areas. There is pressure to mine copper, gold and manganese now in the areas of Serenje and Mkushi. This is resulting into the pollution of our streams.

Madam Speaker, I want to agree with most of the hon. Members of Parliament that we have adequate laws and these laws have been in existence for a long time. What has been lacking is the enforcement of environmental laws such as the Forest Act and the Wildlife Act to ensure that offenders are punished.

Madam Speaker, I will react to a few of the issues that were brought to the House. I want to agree with some hon. Members who talked about contamination levels of underground water. I am sure all of us have seen a proliferation of filling stations around the country. Anybody is developing in any area he/she wants without due regard to environmental laws. The good news is that the New Dawn Government, the Government which has stated very clearly that it will be a Government of laws, will ensure that these laws which exist currently will be enforced.

Madam Speaker, the best example is the contamination of the Kafubu River. I am sure you saw how quickly the offender, first of all, quickly attended to the pollution. That truck was quickly pulled out of the river and the offender was punished. Right now, as we speak, all mining companies have been put on alert to ensure that there is environmental sustainability. We will no longer treat this issue of climate change as business as usual.

Madam Speaker, we, indeed, advertised concession licenses, but if you looked at the advert, we clearly stated that concession licenses in game management areas (GMAs) will only be given upon consent from our partners from the Ministry of Tourism. Obviously, the utilisation of forest products in any areas of the country is the mandate of this ministry.

Forests are allowed to be cut in certain areas, obviously, to allow regeneration and to enhance economic activities. The catchword here is ‘sustainability’. All these things can be done in a sustainable manner.

Madam Speaker, as we discuss the Committee’s report, we have to be mindful of the fact that water is not only water for drinking, but also for power generation. Therefore, the quantity of water, which is a subject of the way we keep our environment, directly affects hydropower generation.

Madam Speaker, we saw the devastation in the energy sector which resulted into the slowing down of economic development as a result of power deficits. Water is, therefore, very important. Water keeps wildlife. It is also very important for tourism and sanitation. Water ensures food security. Due to climate change, the availability of this water is reducing.

Madam Speaker, I, therefore, commend the Committee for doing a very diligent job. I can attest to the good technicality of the report, as a hydropower engineer myself and a civil engineer. Hon. Kangombe was spot on.

Further, Madam Speaker, the Government has also embarked on a project to quantify the natural resources we have, be it forest products, water or mineral sources. This is to ensure that there is a sustainable way we utilise these resources. Therefore, I support the report and urge the House, obviously, to include issues of climate change and environmental sustainability into this Committee.

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

The Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mr Mulenga): Madam Speaker, I thank you very much for giving me this opportunity to respond to the report that was raised by the hon. Member of Parliament. I choose to appreciate the responses and secondments that came from hon. Members of Parliament in this House from the Ruling Party and the Opposition.

Madam Speaker, indeed, I have drawn a lesson and encouragement from how hon. Members of Parliament have engaged regarding this matter which affects everyone in the manner that we should work together and develop our country positively.

Madam Speaker, drawing attention to the submissions of the hon. Members of Parliament, I choose to start with the concern that was raised as regards Zesco Limited copper lines that have perpetually been subjected to theft because of the desire and appetite that has been observed in the copper industry.

Madam Speaker, I should put it on record that I am not only hon. Minister, but am also hon. Member of Parliament for Chingola Constituency which houses a number of copper smelting facilities within the industrial area. The Government has embarked on a mission to overhaul the electric cables that are being used. Between November and February, we experienced high levels of theft of copper wires. With quick response from the Ministry of Energy through Zesco Limited, the Zesco Managing Director gave a directive that every replacement of stolen copper cable wires is done with aluminium wires.

Madam Speaker, this is a response to the concern that was raised by the hon. Member of Parliament for Mufulira Constituency. The Government has already embarked on replacing the stolen copper cable wires with aluminium wires which have very little attraction to theft as the mineral itself has very little market value right now, as opposed to what we are seeing with copper wires.

Madam Speaker, I want to continue to discuss the energy sector. I heard the hon. Member of Parliament for Mwandi encourage the Government to do what it has done through the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) in the water sector and subject the water reticulation system to the same kind of urgency.

Madam Speaker, I must make mention that this Government has undertaken not only a feasibility study, but also implemented the electrification of rural areas under REA that were earmarked for electrification even in the past regime. This is not only happening in rural areas, but also in peri-urban areas where the grid system has not been available.

Madam Speaker, I want to call upon hon. Members of Parliament in this House, to unite, work together and see that the Government is supported in implementing these projects that we are doing in the same manner that we have united to support the Motion that was raised by Hon. Kangombe. How do we support the Government? It is by being objective, realistic and honest enough to raise our hands and say it is happening in our respective constituencies.

Madam Speaker, I want to encourage hon. Members in this House when it comes to the serious concern of water shortage in our respective constituencies. On behalf of the people of Chingola where I come from, I am equally concerned, not only as hon. Minister, but also as hon. Member of Parliament, over the challenges of water supply. Indeed, there is erratic supply of water in our various constituencies.

Madam Speaker, I admired what came from the hon. Member of Parliament for Mwandi Constituency. She did not only come to lament about the water challenges, but she also provided a solution. Let us not have floods and run short of water five months later. We should invest in water harvesting.

Ms Sefulo: Hear, hear!

Mr Mulenga: That is a progressive manner of being a part of the Government. I suggest that irrespective of our political affiliation, all hon. Members of Parliament are part of the Government and should bring progressive suggestions as opposed to lamentations only.

Madam Speaker, I want to quickly mention that His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Hakainde Hichilema, is putting up a team of hon. Ministers and their technocrats who, in due time, will be visiting the Republic of Egypt –

Mr Chibombwe: On a point of order, Madam Speaker.

Madam Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Chibombwe: Madam Speaker, I rise on Standing Order No. 65 that states that information given on the Floor of the House should be accurate and verifiable. The hon. Member of Parliament for Mufulira raised the point that Zesco Limited service cables are being stolen in Mufulira and asked the Government, in future, to consider making aluminium service cables.

Madam Speaker, the hon. Minister has just said that Zesco Limited has started replacing copper cables with aluminium cables, which is not true. So far, we do not manufacture aluminium cables in the country, and we have no source for aluminium cables. Zesco Limited is still replacing stolen copper service cables with the same copper service cables. Even the underground cables that are vandalised are replaced with copper cables. We have not started replacing them with aluminium cables. Is the hon. Minister, therefore, in order to mislead this august House?

Madam Speaker: The hon. Member for Bahati has sufficiently debated. He asked a question and, in fact, even responded by way of a challenge to the hon. Minister. So, I think the matter has been adequately settled.

May the hon. Minister continue.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mulenga: Madam Speaker, thank you for your guidance, but I feel, as I said earlier, we should avoid being political on matters, unnecessarily.

Madam Speaker, I even gave reference with a lot of emphasis that I am an hon. Member of Parliament from Chingola Constituency, where there was rampant theft of the same and I stand to attest to the fact that we are replacing Copper cables with aluminium cables. We do not manufacture sufficient copper cable wires that you see all around the country either. We import them in the same manner we import aluminium.

Madam Speaker, I wish we could bet, individually, our seats, for when one is proven wrong. I know where I am coming from and we have done it.

Madam Speaker, I urge hon. Members of Parliament to stop being political on matters that are progressive for the country and be as apolitical as the manner in which we started debating this agenda.

Madam Speaker, I wish to continue.

Madam Speaker, when it comes to access or provision of water, indeed, the Government is looking at means and ways of harvesting rain water, as was ably and well guided by the hon. Member of Parliament for Mwandi. For many years, we have lamented that despite having huge amounts of rainfall, a few months down the line, our animals have no grazing land, our agriculture land lacks water and we only get to farm in the rainy session.

Madam Speaker, before I was asked to resume my seat because of the point of order that was raised on me, I was trying to emphasise the point that His Excellency the President of Zambia is constituting a team of hon. Ministers who will be visiting Egypt to go and learn and understand how water harvest and management is done so that it can be introduced in Zambia. It is not only a team of hon. Ministers, but their technical teams. So, we are in the process of implementing water harvest, as it was guided by the hon. Member for Mwandi.

Madam Speaker, allow me to implore all hon. Members of Parliament in the House, as an hon. Minister and an hon. Member of Parliament coming from the Copperbelt where I have the biggest constituency with eighteen wards. Indeed, access to water is a challenge. However, while we still remain with technical challenges of supplying water to our people, deliberately, as a constituency, we want to sink eighteen boreholes in our respective areas, of course, with guidance from the Water Resources Management Authority (WARMA). I hope my hon. Colleagues can take a leaf from me. This will be done from the Constituency Development Fund (CDF).

Madam Speaker, while we sit and wait for the Government to provide a lasting solution to the water reticulation system, our people will not sit forever and wait for huge financial grants or support that will come from the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to provide us with elaborate water reticulation systems. We have come to understand that even through borehole water, we will provide decent and clean drinking water for our people.

Madam Speaker, I need to address, strongly, the issue of tourism. Indeed, this Motion is very important and must be addressed critically. The hon. Member of Parliament for Chama talked about the cancelation of hunting concessions –

Madam Speaker: Order!

The hon. Minister’s time expired.

Mr Kangombe: Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Members of Parliament who have ably supported this Motion. I also thank the hon. Minister of Green Economy and Environment as well as the hon. Minister of Commerce Trade and Industry who have put up their word and support through their debate on this very important Motion.

Madam Speaker, from the debate of the hon. Members, you are able to attest to the fact that the water challenge is not only in urban areas, but also in rural areas. Examples are Chama, Mwandi, and, of course, Sesheke where I come from, as well as Katombola.

Madam Speaker, I would like to urge the Government to expedite the processing of those pieces of legislation to ensure that these water recharge zones that are being encroached are protected.

Madam Speaker, I am happy about the information that the hon. Member for Chingola and Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry has given on the much needed water harvest. He said that His Excellency the President, Mr Hakainde Hichilema, will constitute a team that will look into water harvesting so that the nation can actually have water.

Madam Speaker, water is life; even the composition of the human body is 60 per cent water. You can see clearly that for everything to thrive in this country and on the continent, water is definitely needed.

Madam speaker, from the interactions, I can only say thank you, once again. Thank you also for giving us the opportunity to go and fetch the much needed information that this House so much needed to ensure that we can, together, protect our water.

Madam Speaker, I am ‘water’, you are ‘water’ and all hon. Members of Parliament here are ‘water’.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Madam Speaker: Has somebody been given the Floor to say anything? This amounts to interruption.

Question put and agreed to.


The Vice-President (Mrs Nalumango): Madam Speaker, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.


The House Adjourned at 1249 hours until 1430 hours on Tuesday, 21st June, 2022.