Debates- Wednesday, 27th June, 2012

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Wednesday, 27th June, 2012

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]






Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, I wish to acquaint the House with the presence, in the Speaker’s Gallery, of the Parliamentary Service Commission from the Parliament of Uganda. The delegation is being led by Hon. J. L. Oulanyah, the Hon. Deputy Speaker. Other members of the delegation include:

    Hon. D. Migereko, Government Chief Whip;
    Hon. N. M. Mafabi, Leader of the Opposition;
    Hon. D. E. Lumala, Parliamentary Commissioner;
    Hon. B. Chris, Parliamentary Commissioner;
    Hon. B. J. L. Abwooli, Parliamentary Commissioner;
    Hon. O. Elijah, Parliamentary Commissioner;
    Mr M. O. Benson, Principal Assistant Secretary;
    Mr K. Robinson, Principal Assistant Secretary; and
    Mr G. Goffin, Research Officer in the Office of the Government Chief Whip.

On behalf of the National Assembly, I wish to warmly receive the guests and welcome their presence in our midst.  
I thank you all. 

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!




The Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development (Mr Yaluma): Mr Speaker, recently, our country experienced disruptions in fuel supply, which are now slowly fading away. 

Sir, while the Government acknowledges the continuous increase in the demand for fuel due to the ever-increasing vehicle population, …

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Yaluma: … and growth …

Hon. Opposition Member: Question!

Mr Yaluma: … of the economy, …

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Yaluma: … it is our resolve to ensure that we have sufficient fuel supply at all times.

Mr Speaker, the recent fuel shortages experienced in the country were mainly due to logistical challenges in crude feedstock supplies. The ship carrying the fuel for the country was expected to dock in Dar-Es-Salaam around 1st May, 2012, but only arrived on 15th May, 2012. The fifteen-day delay in the arrival of this shipment meant that all the fuel excess stocks that had been stored were used to bridge this transition. Given that the current refinery production does not meet the national demand and is supplemented by imports of finished products, the effect of this delay persisted up to the current month.

Mr Speaker, when the long-awaited ship finally arrived, the pipeline developed leakages in some portions in the Iringa area of Tanzania, which necessitated suspension of pumping on two occasions. This, together with the delayed arrival of the ship, led to the refinery not operating for about twenty days, hence aggravating the situation. 

Mr Speaker, in order to address this situation, in the short to medium term, the Government has taken the following measures:

(i)    importation of 70 million litres of diesel and 31 million litres of petrol up to the end of August, 2012; and

(ii)    further importation of 60 million litres of diesel and 35 million litres of petrol to cover the period of the maintenance shutdown of Indeni Refinery in September.

Mr Speaker, in addition to the above measures, efforts are being made to expedite the engagement of new suppliers for both finished products and crude feedstock. The supply contract for the finished products will be for one year while that for crude feedstock will be for two years. 

Mr Speaker, in terms of the current feedstock supply status in the country, we have 13 days of crude feedstock in storage tanks while a 90,000 metric tonne ship is currently offloading in Dar-Es-Salaam. This means that the country, as of today, has two months of crude feedstock in addition to the fuel being imported to supplement the daily production. It is expected that fuel stock levels will start increasing in July, 2012, as supply stabilises throughout the country as both oil marketing companies and fuel consumers adjust to the new supply levels.  
As the nation may be aware, Mr Speaker, fuel supply has stabilised in recent times. We intend to build up on this stability by continuing with long-term supply contracts and proactive measures to forestall any possible disruption. We are also assessing immediate requirements for the refinery and pipeline with a view to improving their current performance. Further assessments include possible new investments by the private sector or through a public-private partnership (PPP). While we have seen a lot of possible interest from potential new actors in the petroleum sub-sector, the Government has to ensure that such activities will benefit the country in the long run.

Sir, one of the critical requirements for stable fuel supply is availability of adequate storage capacity. Within the first phase of constructing the new fuel storage depots in the provinces, the ones in Lusaka and Mpika will be commissioned this year, followed by those in Mongu and Solwezi in 2013 and, later, those in Choma, Mansa, Kapiri-Mposhi and Chipata.

Mr Speaker, allow me to inform the nation that the donation of fuel to Malawi by the Zambian Government was completed successfully.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr V. Mwale: That is why kuli shortage!

Mr Yaluma: The Zambian Government supplied 1.9 million litres of diesel and 961,400 litres of petrol. This consignment was intended to assist the Malawian Government at its time of need; during the funeral of the former President.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear! Twalilosha!

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, as I conclude my statement, allow me to apologise to all consumers for the inconvenience caused during the period when we temporarily experienced disruption in fuel supply.

Hon. Opposition Member interjected.


Mr Yaluma: I will come to that. I will do it.

I wish to assure the nation, through this august House, that the Government will ensure that there is stability in fuel supply at all times, as coherent contingencies have been put in place.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Hon. Members are now free to ask questions on points of clarification on the ministerial statement issued by the hon. Minister.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central): Mr Speaker, what has happened to the fuel reserves that we have heard about in this House? There was even a levy per litre to stock the strategic reserve. In the first instance, there is a mandatory fifteen-day reserve that should be kept by oil companies. The Government then had assured the country that it would have a reserve of thirty days. What has happened to these reserves that, immediately there is a problem, we have fuel shortages?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, firstly, I did address the situation regarding storage. We had sufficient storage of fuel at the time of coming into the shortages, but, I said that the fifteen-day delay of the ship in Tanzania and the bursting of the pipe gave us a twenty-day delay which, of course, should override the reserve. So, we could not have that reserve.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, the fuel that was donated to Malawi by a member of the “G-20’, Zambia, has a value.


Mr Mwiimbu: What vote did the Government of the Republic of Zambia use to purchase that fuel at the expense of Zambians to provide for Malawi?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, firstly, if I look back to what His Honour the Vice-President said on Friday, which was to remind us that we follow the Bantu, Bantu, Bantu kind of initiative.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr V. Mwale: What vote?

Mr Yaluma: I am coming to that.

We are not living in isolation. We are part of the global village but, again, we are Africans.

Mr Mwiimbu: What vote?

Mr Yaluma: Hon. Member of Parliament for Monze Central, if hon. Member of Parliament for Kalomo Central dropped dead, …

Mr Muntanga: Aah!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Yaluma: … definitely, you would be the first person to go and donate mealie-meal, ing’ombe and all the relevant stuff to make the grieving a little bearable. It is from our tradition that we do that. So, from that point of view, we did that and we will have to do it again, should we see it fit.


Mr Mwiimbu: What was the vote used?

Mr Speaker: Order!

Hon. Members, can you exercise some patience, please.

Mr Yaluma: We do very much know that His Excellency the President has an overall veto on any issue when it comes to that. He made the decision in his capacity as the Head of State.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear! Boma! Boma! Boma!

Mr Kampyongo (Shiwang’andu): Mr Speaker, the people of the Republic of Malawi appreciated the gesture we extended to them very much. However, I would like to know whether that humble gesture contributed to the fuel shortages that we experienced.

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, the gesture we extended to Malawi never, at all, impacted our fuel supplies in the country. As you may recall, we only started experiencing these shortages two or three months after donating the fuel. So, the two are unrelated.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Bwalya (Lupososhi): Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister for the well-delivered statement. Seeing that Indeni Refinery has been an issue for quite some time, could the hon. Minister inform this House and the nation whether the maintenance of the refinery is scheduled and was not a factor in the shortage of fuel in this country.

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, we do maintenance works on the equipment or assets at Indeni to prolong their lifespan and keep the production up. So, when we plan for maintenance, it is to ensure that we have no breakdown and continue allowing the production to go on smoothly. Therefore, for the maintenance of the plant, which will come in September, we have got contingencies in place that will ensure that we do not have any shortage. I can assure this august House that there will be no shortage arising from the maintenance.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Simbao (Senga Hill): Mr Speaker, could the hon. Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development tell us whether fuel supply has stabilised because, yesterday, I went to two filling stations on Kafue Road that had no fuel.

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, if there is no water in Chalala, it does not mean that the entire Lusaka does not have water. The lack of fuel at two filling stations could be a result of the logistical problems being faced by the oil marketing companies (OMCs) that provide fuel to the filling stations the hon. Member went to. As things stand, right now, we have thirteen days’ stock and, in the next two to three weeks, we will have a two-month stock.

Sir, all we just need to do is find out why the OMCs have not supplied fuel to some of the filling stations.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kazonga (Vubwi): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister indicated that the two important variables that actually contributed to the increase in the demand for fuel is the increase in the number of vehicles as well as the growth of the economy.

Sir, what is the Government going to do to address the continuous increase of the number of vehicles in the country which, ultimately, affects the demand for fuel?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, my speech elaborated our plans to cater for the growing number of cars. We are putting up storage tanks that will hold reserves to last five months even in a shortage-induced buying frenzy. As for infrastructure, we have people who are interested in coming to invest in the increasing of the capacity of the refinery. That is how well-defined our plans are.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Sing’ombe (Dundumwezi): Mr Speaker, I am aware that some of the health institutions in the North-Western Province are run on generators. These include Luwi Mission Hospital and Mwinilunga District Hospital. What measures is the Government putting in place to ensure that, when the country runs out of fuel, such institutions continue operating to avoid the loss of lives?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, I think that it is not part of my ministry’s mandate to go low to the level that answering that question requires us to do. However, I will try to provide a bonus answer since I am the hon. Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development.

Sir, the Ministry of Health, in its planning, takes care of such eventualities. For a detailed answer, I think that the question needs to be directed to the hon. Minister of Health.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Speaker gave the Floor to hon. Mbewe.

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, on a point of order. 

Mr Speaker: Who are you raising the point of order on?


Mr Speaker: You are on the Floor.

Mr Mbewe (Chadiza): Mr Speaker, which companies have been contracted to supply crude oil to Zambia?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, the procurement process is still in motion because the negotiations have not yet been completed. I will only know more about the issue when a report about it lands on my desk, sometime this week.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Speaker, I want to begin by thanking the hon. Minister for the long-awaited statement. That said, why have there been contradictions regarding the donation of fuel to Malawi in light of the statements from his Government which, at one point stated that the donation was totally free but, at another stage, said a certain portion was to be paid for? In answering, maybe, he can go further by telling me the cost of the fuel that was given to Malawi.

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, during the course of the week, I heard some debate in this House about professionalism in the media. I presume that the so-called contradictions were caused by the unprofessional reporting of the media.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Kaingu (Mwandi): Mr Speaker, this Government makes the House superfluous, as far as the appropriation of resources is concerned. Hon. Jack Mwiimbu wanted to know the vote that the Government used to acquire the fuel it donated to Malawi.

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, yesterday, this august House was reminded of contingency funds and how they are used. We always have contingency funds at our disposal. 

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Livune (Katombola): Mr Speaker, what negative effects did the fuel shortage have on the economy as regards productivity?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, a proper response to that question would require us to engage in a vigorous academic exercise. Would you allow us to go and compile the information that will enable us to answer the question properly.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Monde (Itezhi-tezhi): Mr Speaker, …

Ms Kalima: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Ms Kalima: Mr Speaker, it is not in my habit to rise on points of order.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Kalima: Mr Speaker, I am usually just forced by circumstances. On March 15, 2012, under Question No. 201, Hon. Lufuma asked His Honour the Vice-President whether there was any Government policy regarding national mourning and Hon. E. C. Lungu gave the following answer: 

Funeral            Personalities

(a) State Funeral    President
Chief Justice
Speaker of the National Assembly
Hon. Cabinet Ministers.

(b) Official Funeral    Hon. Deputy Ministers
    Secretary to the Cabinet
    Ambassadors or High Commissioners

Mr Speaker, I cannot see any other categories for other people, apart from the ones listed. This Government has continued abrogating the law by not following the laid-down procedures over many issues, including the way national mourning is declared. Is this PF Government in order to continue abrogating the law?


Mr Speaker: Order!

I will request the hon. Member for Kasenengwa to submit her question so that His Honour the Vice-President can respond to it.

Mr Monde: Mr Speaker, fuel is expensive in Zambia compared with neighbouring countries and one of the reasons is that the Government is too involved in the pricing of the commodity, unlike in other countries, where the industry has been liberalised. Does the Government plan to liberalise the industry so that we can be at par with other countries in terms of fuel pricing?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, I partly concur with the submission of the hon. Member for Itezhi-tezhi. We are trying, as much as possible, to liberalise the pricing of fuel. As you are aware, it is the intention of the Government to procure fuel at the Government-to-Government level so as to cut down on the number of middlemen in the chain, who are thirteen, currently. Most of the costs or overheads are as a result of the thirteen middlemen involved in our transactions. We are working hard to try and liberalise the industry so that we bring down the retail price of fuel.

Thank you, Sir.

Mr Mutati (Lunte): Mr Speaker, part of my question has been asked. Part of the broader plan to reduce the price of fuel should be to increase the volume of fuel that the country procures so that it can meet the challenges of our economic growth and the increase in the number of vehicles. Could the hon. Minister indicate whether an integral part of this plan will rest in the next procurement process and confirm that the output of the next procurement process will result in the reduction of the pump price.

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, Hon. Mutati has pre-empted what I should have said in response to his question.


Mr Yaluma: Actually, we have shortened the procurement process. Our contracts will, now, not be running for two years. They will be running for one year. Doing things this way will help us to continuously come up with strategies to improve the process.

Thank you, Sir.

Ms Imenda (Luena): Mr Speaker, there is a question that the hon. Minister has not answered and I want to repeat it. What was the value, in monetary terms, of the fuel that was donated to Malawi?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, we do not somersault. The reason I am in my seat is because I am the hon. Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development. The fuel was worth 10 billion.

Thank you, Sir.

Mr Speaker: Hon. Minister, the question is: What was the value of the fuel that was donated to Malawi?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, I said it was 10 billion.

Hon. Opposition Members: In kwacha?

Mr Yaluma: Of course, it is in kwacha because this is the currency we use in Zambia. I am ready to provide a breakdown of all the costs involved.

Thank you, Sir.




365. Mr Katuka (Mwinilunga) asked the Minister of Finance and National Planning:

(a)    of the total amount of money appropriated by Parliament for the 2011 Financial Year, how much was actually released to the spending agencies;

(b)    of the amount released, how much was returned to the Treasury at the end of the 2011 Financial Year;

(c)    which spending agencies returned the money to the Treasury; and

(d)    what the reasons for failing to spend the money were.

The Vice-President (Dr Scott) (on behalf of the Minister of Finance and National Planning (Mr Chikwanda): Mr Speaker, by the end of 2011, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning had released K23.15 trillion to ministries, provinces and spending agencies, against the approved Budget of K20.54 trillion. The supplementary expenditure was financed by extra revenue from mining tax arrears and extra domestic and foreign borrowing. 

Mr Speaker, at the end of the 2011 Financial Year, K284,930,112,193.74 was returned to the Treasury.

Mr Speaker, thirty-five ministries, provinces and other spending agencies returned the funds to the Treasury. The failure to spend the funds within the 2011 Financial Year was attributed to the delays in the procurement process.

Mr Speaker, I have a schedule of all the funds that were returned to the Treasury and I propose, with your indulgence, to lay it on the Table, rather than read it out on the Floor of the House, which would be rather tedious.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

The Vice-President laid the paper on the Table.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


366. Mr Chingimbu (Kabompo East) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing: 

(a)    whether the Government had plans to replace the Keep Zambia Clean Campaign vehicles;

(b)    when new Constituency Development Fund (CDF) guidelines would be distributed to all hon. Members of Parliament; and 

(c)    when the Integrated Development Plan for Manyinga would be implemented.

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Tembo): Mr Speaker, currently, the Government has no plans to replace the Keep Zambia Clean Campaign vehicles. However, local authorities are encouraged to provide estimates and expenditure in their budgets for the purchase of utility vehicles for service delivery.

Mr Speaker, the ministry will not distribute new Constituency Development Fund (CDF) guidelines to councils, hon. Members of Parliament and other stakeholders on the management and utilisation of the CDF. This is because the ministry is, currently, developing a Constituency Development Fund Bill, which will be presented to this august House, after the approval of the Cabinet, for enactment into the Constituency Development Fund Act. The objective of this Bill is to strengthen the management and utilisation of these funds and specify penalties to be meted out on perpetrators of their misappropriation and misapplication. The ministry will subject the draft Constituency Development Fund (CDF) Bill to wider consultations involving various stakeholders before a Cabinet memorandum is prepared to refer the Bill to the Cabinet for consideration and approval.

Mr Speaker, the preparation of the Integrated Development Plan (IDP) for Manyinga …


Mr Tembo: … is at infant stage. On 5th May, 2011, a consultative meeting was held with his Royal Highness, Senior Chief Sikufele, at his palace. The purpose of the meeting was to explain to the chief and his council of advisors the rationale behind the preparation of the IDP, its benefits, beneficiaries, stakeholders and the importance of having an IDP for Manyinga sub-Centre. The ceremony to launch the preparation of the IDP should have taken place on 25th November, 2011. However, it was postponed to enable the Chief to consult further with the rest of the chiefdom. The activities for the preparation of the IDP have since been suspended in order to resolve outstanding concerns raised by the chief and his advisors. His Royal Highness, Senior Chief Sikufele, has indicated that he is not in favour of the proposal to prepare an IDP for Manyinga.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mutelo (Lukulu West): Mr Speaker, why are there no plans to replace the Keep Zambia Clean Campaign vehicles? I ask this question because the canter vehicles currently being used cannot work in Kalabo Central Constituency.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, on behalf of the hon. Minister, who is away, I think that it is very clear, from the answer, that the councils are the ones replacing the vehicles, not the Central Government.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Miyutu (Kalabo Central): Mr Speaker, …

Mr Nkombo: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, I am thankful and indebted to you for allowing me to raise yet another very important point of order on the hon. Minister of Mines, Energy and whatever else it is called. I do not remember the rest.

Mr Speaker, we laboured, in this House, for forty minutes, to gather a clear position on the energy requirements in this country in view of the fuel shortages and the donation to our neighbouring country, Malawi. It is true that, sometimes, reporters are unprofessional, as the hon. Minister said, in response to the question by the hon. Member of Parliament for Luena, following my question that was not answered. Having said so, I want to know whether this Government is in order not to clarify its position on oil procurement in this country. Going by the reports in this newspaper, which must be censured by this House if it is unprofessional – I would like to quote what it says about the status of the procurement of oil in this country. The headline reads, … 


Mr Nkombo: Sir, it is true that empty cans make noise.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, I need your protection. The Daily Nation newspaper has a headline reading, “Oil Scandal Explodes.” Allow me to read an excerpt to demonstrate how deep this matter goes in affecting the economy of this country. We risk losing US$2 million if we allow this Government to proceed this way: 

 “Government has been sued by one of the companies that tendered their bids to supply crude oil and finished oil products and if the suit is successful, all proceedings related to the tender process would be suspended.”

Mr Speaker, the Daily Nation newspaper further says that the Government, through a daily paper, indicated that two tenders had already been awarded to companies that were not among those that quoted the best rates in the public tender opening. Finally, the excerpt further reads: 

“If the negotiations with Trafigura culminate in a tender award, this will translate into a loss of about US$ 2,240,596 in one year to the Zambian economy.”

Mr Speaker, I would like to have your ruling on whether the hon. Minister is in order to allow his ministry to carry on scuba-diving about the procurement of oil in this country, which is the engine of our economy.

Mr Speaker: Order!

My response is that, earlier, I provided guidance on points of order, especially of this nature. I indicated, in my ruling, that I will only permit them where they are compelling and extremely urgent. The matter that the hon. Member for Mazabuka Central is referring to, obviously, raises a separate substantive issue. I urge him to raise it by way of a substantive question. I must mention that points of order of this nature will constantly and consistently be deflected in this fashion. I indicated, earlier, that one of the demerits of raising these points of order is that they have the unfortunate tendency of distracting us from the order of the Business of the House. So, unless the matter is extremely compelling, I will not respond to those points of order in the fashion anticipated by those who raise them. 

In short, I urge the hon. Member for Mazabuka Central to file a question and the relevant hon. Minister will respond accordingly. That is the sense of the facility for questions. Otherwise, there would be no end to this. We would have a hundred points of order on a hundred different subjects and we would not be able to consummate our Business. I hope that this counsel is taken because I will not respond in the fashion in which many expect me to. That is my ruling.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order!

Hon. Member for Kalabo Central may continue.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, I thank you …

Mr Mufalali: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mufalali: Mr Speaker, in this House, we are compelled to speak facts as they are. We are not supposed to misguide or mislead the House and the nation. 

Sir, we have just been told by the hon. Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development that the amount of fuel that was given to Malawi was 1,900,000 litres of diesel and 961,400 litres of petrol. Multiplied by the current pump price, these figures go beyond K19 billion, yet the hon. Minister mentioned K10 billion. According to the pump price, the diesel, alone, is worth over K14 billion. Is he in order to mislead the House and the nation that the amount of fuel that was donated was worth only K10 billion?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order!

I said it, earlier, that, if you want specific responses from the relevant ministers, the most appropriate way to go about it is to file in a question.

Could the hon. Member for Kalabo Central continue, please.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister mentioned that the PF Government has no plans to replace the vehicles for the Keep Zambia Clean Campaign and explained that the councils or local authorities must provide for that exercise. Is he aware that the district councils in rural areas have no means and capacity to raise funds to secure vehicles that will enable them to carry out the mandate of keeping those places clean? 

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, we are aware and, perhaps, the questioner would care to communicate what he would like us to do about it.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sing’ombe (Dudumwezi): Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister indicated that the Government had no plans to replace the Keep Zambia Clean Campaign vehicles. Could he tell us how many of these vehicles are still in good condition and those that are in a state of disrepair.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, that is a new question.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: I think it is obvious that it is a new question.


367. Mr Njeulu (Sinjembela) asked the hon. Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education why construction projects at the following basic schools in Shang’ombo District were abandoned despite the Government having released funds:

(a)    Lilongo;

(b)    Liyuwayuwa;

(c)    Lyamaya;

(d)    Mboiwa;

(e)    Mengo;

(f)    Beshe;

(g)    Nalwamba;

(h)    Lwanda Masiala; and

(i)    Mwanambao.

The Deputy Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education (Mr Mabumba): Mr Speaker, the construction of projects at the nine stated schools in Shang’ombo District were not abandoned despite the Government having released the funds. However, the funds that were released were not adequate to complete the projects.

Sir, I think the problem was that the costs incurred in transporting materials across the Zambezi River to the district from Senanga District, where they had been off-loaded, were high. However, it is important to note that, despite these projects not having been completed, there has been a significant amount of work done, with the exception of Beshe and Lwanda Masiala, which were not in the ministry’s Infrastructure Development Plan. 

Sir, the schools at Lyamaya and Mwanambao were completed, although their roofs were later blown off.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mufalali (Senanga Central): Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister aware that there are two ways to get to Shang’ombo District in order for materials to be delivered? This is because the Government is always referring to Senanga.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, yes, we are aware of that, but decisions regarding the transportation of these materials are made by the district because this is where these projects are being implemented.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamudulu (Siavonga): Mr Speaker, …

Mr Mucheleka: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mucheleka: Mr Speaker, with your guidance, I rise on a very serious point of order. The University of Zambia (UNZA) should have re-opened last Monday, but, now, we are made to understand that this has been postponed indefinitely. As a result, the students have even rioted. Is it in order for the hon. Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education not to inform the House on the reasons that have necessitated the postponement of the re-opening?

Mr Speaker: Order!

My ruling is that you file an urgent question.

Could the hon. Member for Siavonga continue, please.

Mr Hamudulu: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister indicated that the works at these nine schools have not been completed due to, among other things, the cost of transporting materials to the sites. Can he confirm that there was a lack of proper planning when these projects were embarked on because the cost of transporting the materials should have been factored into the budget.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, I do not agree with the assertion that there was no proper planning on our part. Of course, these are historical projects, but I do not want to divulge further information because the ministry will deal with the issue.

I thank you, Sir.

Professor Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda): Mr Speaker, last week, the hon. Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education informed the House that the Infrastructure Development Plan for 2012 was almost ready and would soon be distributed to the House. Are these uncompleted projects in the 2012 Education Infrastructure Development Plan?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, unfortunately, the seven schools are not part of the 2012 Infrastructure Development Plan. I had discussions with the Provincial Educational Officer, because our information comes from the provinces and districts, so that, at the end of the day, the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education compiles a consolidated Annual Infrastructure Development Plan. Having worked in, and headed the ministry, Hon. Professor Lungwangwa, I think, is aware of the procedures followed. Unfortunately, those schools were omitted and the only assurance I can make to this House is that we are going to consider them in the 2013 Budget.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, what assurance can the hon. Minister give us since the Provincial Administration in the Western Province has failed to provide accurate information to the ministry? Can he assure us that he is going to make the Provincial Administration serve the people effectively.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, at the ten provincial indabas that we have held in this country, one of the issues that we have made clear to the provincial leadership relates to information gathering, which we have found to be inadequate. Sometimes, the statistics we have at the ministry are at variance with what the respective provinces and districts have. I think that the provincial leadership is aware of this from what we have discussed with them. If they do not give us accurate information, then, our planning and decision-making processes are going to be ineffective. I am sure that this has been taken on board.

I thank you, Sir.  {mospagebreak}


368. Mr Kapyanga (Kabwe Central) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing what measures the ministry had taken to sensitise marketeers countrywide on fire prevention methods in markets in view of the many fire outbreaks that have occurred in the past.

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, the ministry is drawing up a fire safety, prevention and education programme to sensitise marketers, in collaboration with local authorities and market managers, to reduce or eliminate outbreaks of fire in markets. This will be done through lectures, distribution of fire safety fliers and posters, and how to contact the Fire Brigade, in case of a fire.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Kapyanga: Mr Speaker, does the ministry have any plans of buying basic fire-fighting equipment for markets?

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, there are plans to procure fire engines and other equipment to be used to fight fire in markets.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Kalaba (Bahati): Mr Speaker, would the hon. Minister confirm whether most fires that break out in markets are as a result of people sleeping there.

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member is, actually, right. Most of the fires that break out in markets are caused by people who sleep there. Some of them leave their braziers on throughout the night and that is what causes fires.

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, would the hon. Minister confirm whether one of the strategies the ministry is using to prevent fires in markets is allowing members of the public to sell on the streets.


Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member’s question is completely unrelated to the principal question.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chipungu (Rufunsa): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister talked about the procurement of fire engines and equipment for markets. Is this for specific markets only or even Chongwe Market will benefit?

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, the fire engines are not specifically for markets, but for local authorities.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Antonio (Kaoma Central): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has said that there are plans to acquire fire engines for the local authorities. When should we expect them to reach our local authorities?

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, there are procedures to be followed in the procurement of fire-fighting equipment. As soon as the procedure is completed, the fire engines will be distributed to the local authorities. 

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Lubezhi (Namwala): Mr Speaker, does the law allow marketeers to sleep in markets?

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, there is no law that allows marketeers to sleep in markets. It is illegal.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kazonga (Vubwi): Mr Speaker, what is the ministry doing to discourage people from sleeping in markets, which is not in accordance with the law?

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, as a ministry, we have encouraged the local authorities to create market advisory committees that will look at issues of security in markets. The security personnel are the ones who are going to enforce the law.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Belemu (Mbabala): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister confirmed that most of the fires are caused by people sleeping in markets. He further confirmed that there was no law which allowed people to sleep in markets. Why is it that the cure for that is distributing fliers in markets, when the cause is people sleeping there?

The Minister of Youth and Sport (Mr Kambwili): Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister said that the Government was going to use fliers and lectures in markets in response to a specific question on how the Government was going to sensitise the public. 

Mr Speaker, this is a serious Government.


Mr Kambwili: Sir, all these things that we are talking about are as a result of the poor planning of the previous administration. This Government is not going to allow people to sleep in markets. Markets were given to individual market organisations, such as the Zambia National Marketeers Association (ZANAMA), and that is where the system of sleeping in the markets started from. It is also clear that, for anybody to run an enclosed business, before the councils give them licences, they should have fire-fighting equipment, but the previous Government did not follow all this. So, we are trying to re-organise the local government system so that laws and rules are followed to the letter.

Hon. Members: Hear, Hear!

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


369. Ms Imenda (Luena) asked the Minister of Finance and National Planning:

(a)    how much money, in British Pounds, was held in the Treasury of the Barotse Native Authority at independence in 1964 and was later transferred to the Treasury of the Government of the Republic of Zambia; and

(b)    how much money was held in the treasuries of other native authorities, province by province.

The Vice-President (on behalf of the Minister of Finance and National Planning (Mr Chikwanda)): Mr Speaker, I regret to inform the House that our …


The Vice-President: … records, both past and present, do not contain the information requested. However, we are making efforts to obtain the information from other institutions, such as the National Archives, and we will inform the House at the earliest convenient time.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muyutu: Mr Speaker, His Honour the Vice-President has said that, currently, the information is not available. My question is: This Parliament originates from 1964 and there have been Governments since then. Does his response mean that, at some point, there was discontinuity in the Government such that the current Government cannot acquire the required information now?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, there seems to be two distinct problems here. Firstly, financial information is not kept indefinitely. One occasionally comes across letters of credit in archaeological sites thousands of years old. Generally, however, a few years is as long as records are kept in Government institutions or privates companies. To this problem is added the problem of updating information, particularly with regard to computerisation. It seems that every time computers are installed to maintain records, the old records are lost and history starts all over again. I will make an undertaking to this House that I will personally trace up the answer to this question because I am very interested in it and I think that it should be possible. After all, Zambia was created, as Zambia, when I was already an adult. So, I feel that the information should be available.

I thank you, Sir.


370. Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central) asked the Minister of Health:

(a)    when the main steam laundry building, which was gutted by fire a few years ago at the University Teaching Hospital, would be renovated; and 

(b)    why the area surrounding the building at (a) above was not maintained.

The Deputy Minister of Health (Dr Chikusu): Mr Speaker, the building that was gutted by fire a few years ago at the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) is not the main steam laundry, but the Central Sterilising Supply Department (CSSD). This is a section of the hospital where medical equipment used mostly in theatres was sterilised. At the moment, autoclaves have been placed in theatres, where sterilising is done immediately after use.

Mr Speaker, the Government has provided K22 Billion for infrastructure development at the UTH in the 2012 Budget. Some of these funds will be allocated to the rebuilding of the gutted CSSD, which is expected to start in the second half of 2012.

Mr Speaker, the area surrounding the CSSD is maintained by the UTH horticultural staff, just like any other area of the hospital. The Government appreciates the concern raised and has already taken measures to improve the surroundings.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister aware that the area is really bushy, with tall grass and there are some trees growing in some buildings? If he is aware, when will he ensure that it is cleaned up, not left like an abandoned battle front?

The Minister of Health (Dr Kasonde): Mr Speaker, it is a really welcome pleasure to see the hon. Member for Kalomo Central show interest in a city far from his own constituency.


Dr Kasonde: Clearly, we understand that capital cities have been of particular interest, since Kalomo was the capital of a particular territory. I appreciate the important question about keeping the UTH clean and, as I have said before the House and the public, a clean environment is one of the three C’s that I have gone around the country trying to emphasise. If we are talking about a Zambia that is clean, we should be talking particularly about health institutions being the …


Mr Speaker: May the consultation on my left cease, please.

Dr Kasonde: … cleanest. For this reason, I have personally ordered the clearing of all the places referred to in this. It is true that, sometimes, the grass has been allowed to grow, but it is, certainly, something that we are paying very serious attention to.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


371. Ms Kalima (Kasenengwa) asked the Vice-President:

(a)    what the qualifications required for entry into the following salary scales for public workers were:

(i)    GSS 01; and 

        (ii)    GSS 02-GSS 08; and 

(b)    in which salary scale District Commissioners fell.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, the qualification required for entry in GSS 01 Salary Scale is a Grade 12 or Form 5 School Certificate and a First Degree with eight years relevant experience. For GSS 02, it is a Grade 12 or Form 5 School Certificate and a First Degree with seven years relevant experience at senior management level; for GSS 03, it is a Grade 12 or Form 5 School Certificate and a First Degree with six years relevant experience at senior management level; for GSS 04, it is a Grade 12 or Form 5 School Certificate and a First Degree with five years relevant experience at senior management level; GSS 05, it is a Grade 12 or Form 5 School Certificate and a First Degree with four years relevant experience at senior management level; for GSS 06, it is a Grade 12 or Form 5 School Certificate and a First Degree with three years relevant experience; for GSS 07, it is a Grade 12 or Form 5 School Certificate and a First Degree with two years relevant experience at senior management level while for GSS 08, it is a Grade 12 or Form 5 School Certificate and a First Degree, but not, necessarily, with any relevant experience. 

Mr Speaker, District Commissioners (DCs) fall in the GSS 02 Salary Scale. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Ms Kalima: Mr Speaker, why has the PF Government deliberately decided to humiliate educated and qualified Government directors, who are university graduates, some with Masters degrees, to report to unqualified PF cadres, most of whom only went up to Grade 9 or 12 or, since most of them are nkalambas or old, Form 2 or 5, who are, now, DCs? 

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, that is far too much of a shotgun question, with far too many hidden or explicit assumptions alleging cadreism and lack of education and experience. I do not see how I would even begin to answer it. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Namulambe (Mpongwe): Mr Speaker, His Honour the Vice-President stated that, for all the salary scales mentioned, the entry qualification is a Grade 12 School Certificate and, at least, a First Degree. How many of these DCs have got First Degrees, because most of them do not? Why has the Government decided to go against the degree requirement?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I am at a loss as to whether the questioner is questioning or informing me. He asked how many DCs do not have the First Degree, but also said that most of them do not. If that had been in the original question, it would have been answered. However, I cannot make up an answer at this stage. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


372. Mr Kalaba asked the Minister of Information, Broadcasting and Labour when the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) would begin airing news on an hourly basis, instead of the traditional 1900 hours. 

The Deputy Minister of Information, Broadcasting and Labour (Mr Kapeya): Mr Speaker, the ZNBC has set 30th August, 2012, as the date to begin airing news on an hourly basis on both radio and television. You will recall that, initially, management had announced 15th may, 2012, as the proposed date to start hourly news broadcasts. However, more time was sought to make adequate preparations, hence the change. 

Mr Speaker, following the announcement of 23dr March, 2012, that the ZNBC was to re-brand news by mid-May 2012, preparatory meetings have taken place and good progress been made so far. The recruitment of additional newsroom staff is in progress while new pieces of equipment, such as the switcher, have been procured and the corporation awaits delivery. The switcher will facilitate news interfacing between the Lusaka and Kitwe studios. In addition, a News Quality Control Committee comprising three ZNBC employees and two outsiders has been set up to monitor news in its totality and advise accordingly. 

Furthermore, Sir, I urge the hon. Member of Parliament for Bahati and, indeed, the general membership of this House to walk into this public institution and request any information that they would need. As indicated by the hon. Minister, yesterday, this Government does not control the public media at all. Therefore, hon. Members and the general public are free to walk into this institution and ask for any information that they want.

I thank you, Sir. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kalaba: Mr Speaker, I want to thank the hon. Minister for that very precise and concise answer. He has demonstrated that the PF is a working Government. However, can he confirm that the plans set for 30th August have been adequately thought through. Further, is the staff adequate to manage the process? 

Mr Kapeya: Mr Speaker, the preparations are very adequate. The date is there as a start-off for the news broadcasts. In fact, yesterday, the hon. Minister of Information, Broadcasting and Labour launched the strategic plan for news broadcasts. In this case, two separate branches have opened at the ZNBC. There is one newsroom that will specifically cater for TV2 and another for TV1. Therefore, we will have two newsrooms. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you. 

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, I have noted that the Government has intentions to ensure hourly broadcasts of news on TV. What problems is the ZNBC facing lately, especially during the news hour, when there are many interruptions and apologies being given by the casters? What problems are they having? 

Mr Kapeya: Mr Speaker, for the first time, Hon. Mwiimbu has asked a very good question.


Mr Musukwa: Hear, hear! A progressive question, not a combative one.


Mr Kapeya: Sir, of late, the ZNBC has been experiencing power outages. That is what has contributed to the anomalies we are experiencing on our television.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mufalali: Mr Speaker, in his answer, the hon. Deputy Minister has referred to two towns that will be interfacing. When do we expect the interfacing of the provincial headquarters?

Mr Kapeya: Mr Speaker, another very good question. I believe that, if our colleagues were asking such good questions, definitely, we would get many progressive ideas and move forward.


Mr Kapeya: Currently, Sir, we have only two studios operated by the ZNBC, that is, Lusaka and Kitwe. As you are aware, this Government of action is about to put up television studios in all the ten provinces of Zambia.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


373. Dr Kazonga asked the Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education:

(a)    when the construction of Kapekesa Basic School in Chasefu Parliamentary Constituency, which commenced in 2008, would be completed;

(b)    when a secondary school would be built in the constituency; and

(c)    whether there were any plans to upgrade Chasefu Basic School to a secondary school and, if so, when the plans would be implemented.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, let me, first, provide the context. The contractor awarded the contract to construct Kapekesa Basic School in Chasefu is Gabman Limited, who was also given to construct Umi Primary School and five others in Senanga District and another in Petauke. However, there were some contractual issues that were brought forward and, unfortunately, because of these contractual issues, the contractor has not been able to complete the projects. Nevertheless, we have had some discussions with this contractor over the contractual issues that have negated the completion of the schools. We have requested our Infrastructure Planning Unit to ensure that these issues are resolved as soon as possible. 

Sir, may I also take this opportunity to inform the hon. Member of Parliament for Chasefu that consideration has been given to allocating money for the completion of Kapekesa School in the Infrastructure Development Plan in 2012.

Mr Speaker, the Eastern Province, where Chasefu is, in Lundazi District, benefited the most from the construction of schools in this country. It had more than seventeen projects, out of which Petauke had eight.

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Mabumba: Sir, it is regrettable that, despite all these construction projects in the Eastern Province, Lundazi did not benefit much. However, I want to assure the senior Member of Parliament for Chasefu Constituency that, once the decision is made to construct more secondary schools in this country, Lundazi and Chasaefu will be considered.

Mr Speaker, when decisions are made for political convenience, we tend to have problems like the one we are talking about, where places like Senanga, Monze and Mkushi, where educational services are needed, were not considered.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabumba: Sir, the political leadership that is in the Ministry Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education, now, is not going to make political decisions in that manner. Instead, we are going to provide educational services to the people of Zambia, who voted for the PF Government, on the basis of educational needs in those localities.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, we have no immediate plan to upgrade Chasefu Basic School to a secondary school because the best strategic option for Lundazi, in particular, Chasefu, is addressed by the answer to part (b) of the question. If you look at the infrastructure that Chasefu Basic School has, it cannot be converted into a secondary school. Moreover, the hon. Members in this House and the Zambian people, who voted for us, are aware that one of our policies, which is anchored on the PF Manifesto, is the phasing out of basic schools so that we re-introduce conventional primary and secondary schools. So, I would not want to commit myself as to whether Chasefu is going to be converted into a secondary school, given the inadequate infrastructure it has.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister indicated that there were contractual issues that needed to be addressed and the ministry met the contractor. What timeframe has been given to the contractor to complete this school?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, we have not agreed on the timeframe. What we had requested the contractor and the Infrastructure Planning Unit to do is discuss and, then, give a submission to us. The meeting took place in June and I think the unit, together with the contractor, are yet to make the submission. However, I can assure Hon. Kazonga that we have already allocated some money for the completion of Kapekesa Basic School in Chasefu.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, now that the hon. Minister has realised that Chasefu can only be a basic school and agrees that there is a need to build a secondary school, why does the ministry not have a plan, because Chasefu is a big constituency with a very big hon. Member of Parliament?


Mr Muntanga: Why are you not building a secondary school so that that constituency is well served?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, I would not want to draw the hon. Member of Parliament for Chasefu into this discussion but, as I said in my earlier statement, we recognise the need for a secondary school and I do not want to divulge that information. The hon. Members of Parliament seated here will be able to judge our decisions when the 2012 Infrastructure Development Plan is brought to this House.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mucheleka (Lubansenshi): Mr Speaker, the challenge of delayed construction in the education sector is a countrywide problem. What specific steps have been taken to ensure that those structures whose construction has been delayed are completed as soon as possible?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, I totally agree with what the hon. Member of Parliament has said. Of course, we have got so many structures in this country that have not been completed and the key problem has been that of inadequate funding. On the tours that we have taken to many of the schools being constructed, when we asked some of the contractors why the work was not progressing, they would tell us that they had not been paid. That is why we have requested our colleagues in the Accounts Department in the ministry to provide us with some ledger that would show the payments that have already been made to some of these contractors so that, on the basis of that, we can engage our colleagues in the Ministry of Finance and National Planning on the funding of our ministry.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mufalali: Mr Speaker, will the ministry continue to with this contractor, who has been very malicious, so to say, because he has been leaving materials unprotected? Cement and other things have been destroyed in the schools the contractor has been working on. I know that this is what happened in Chasefu and Senanga.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, from the discussion we had with the contractor, we were able to conclude that we may not be able to finish constructing the schools in Senanga,  and Kapekesa and Umi in Lundazi if we continue with this contractor. That is why I said that there are some contractual issues that I do not want to divulge in this House. However, we have asked the contractor to sub-contract some of the work and he is willing to take that route.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


374. Mr Hamusonde (Nangoma) asked the Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry:

(a)    how many valuation assessments had been conducted on houses belonging to the former Kafue Textiles of Zambia (KTZ) Limited;

(b)    whether former workers of the KTZ would be allowed to buy the KTZ Limited houses as sitting tenants; and

(c)    if so, on which valuation report the sale of the houses would be based.

The Deputy Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mr Mukata): Mr Speaker, two valuation assessments have been conducted on houses belonging to the former KTZ Limited. The first was done in May, 2003 and the other in July, 2006.

Sir, it is the intention of the Government to sell the residential property to former employees of the KTZ who are sitting tenants. This is in line with the Government’s policy of encouraging home ownership by Zambians.

Mr Speaker, the Cabinet will decide on which valuation assessment will be applicable in disposing of the said houses to the former employees of the KTZ who are sitting tenants. The Cabinet will soon make a final decision over the matter.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Milambo (Mwembeshi): Mr Speaker, why were these houses valued twice?

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, the houses had to be valued a second time due to currency fluctuations. The second valuation, in 2006, had to be undertaken to determine the actual value of the houses then.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mutelo: Mr Speaker, now that this is not 2006, is the Government going to value the houses again?

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, as I indicated in my earlier response, the Cabinet will consider what option to take; whether to choose between the two valuation reports or do a valuation.

I thank you, Sir.




Mr Mulusa (Solwezi Central): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that, in view of the inadequate economic beneficiation of implemented national policies since independence, this House urges the Government to establish a national institution in the Office of the President to monitor the performance and evaluate efficiency and effectiveness in the implementation of Government policies.

Mr Speaker: Is the Motion seconded?

Mr Mucheleka (Lubansenshi): Mr Speaker, I beg to second the Motion.

Mr Mulusa: Mr Speaker, I rise to present a Motion I know will not succeed because an instruction was …


Mr Mulusa: … issued by His Honour the Vice-President and, shockingly, the Chief Whip carried it out without spending a moment to reason. As the drama played itself out, I received a note from Hon. Mwila …

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours{mospagebreak}

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

Mr Speaker: Before I allow the hon. Member to continue, I would like to indicate that he will not be permitted to proceed in the fashion in which he proposed because he will be going against a ruling that was issued yesterday. Raising the issues he is talking about in his preface amounts, in effect, to defying the Speaker’s ruling.

I must also take this opportunity to urge the various political parties represented in the House to take the initiative to mount workshops, independent of Parliament, to enable, especially the first-timers, to settle down in office as hon. Members of Parliament. This will also help them to avert obvious and unnecessary embarrassments.

 The hon. Member has the liberty to continue or, in case he has lost faith, to abandon the Motion.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mulusa: Mr Speaker, thank you for your fatherly advice and I wish to proceed. 

Sir, I rise to move a Motion against the background of the pain that I feel regarding the state of affairs in my country. I feel the pain because, for forty-seven years, we have gone several miles on the soles of the nation’s shoes, walking a wrong path to nowhere. Research conducted during the formulation of this Motion indicated that the United States of America’s life expectancy was at forty-seven in 1912; 100 years ago. That is where we are, today. We are the way America was 100 years ago. How can we catch up? Unless a Motion like this one is looked at critically and the advice in it taken on board, we will not move forward.

Mr Speaker, we have mismanaged our national affairs through the poor implementation of policies once too many times and for far too long; longer than forty-seven years, to be specific, and that has taken its toll on our citizens, who have paid a high price in the process. The souls we are losing everyday to the ravages of underdevelopment, unemployment, poverty and early deaths are an unnecessary price. Let us leave those struggles behind and walk where the light of development always shines, by holding hands together for the sake of our people. China has done it. Let us give our people a little grace.

Mr Speaker, this House wishes to urge the Government to establish a national institution for performance monitoring and evaluation. This is in view of the fact that there is no national body through which all economic benefits from set national policies and development programmes can be monitored and evaluated in order to determine their efficiency and effectiveness.

Mr Speaker, this Motion is a follow-up to the one moved on 7th March, 2012, in which this House urged the Government to develop a broadly shared economic and human development strategy. Upon receiving a favourable response from Hon. Chikwanda, the Minister of Finance and National Planning, I proceeded to prepare this Motion in order to ensure that the strategy proposed in the earlier Motion is given effect and operationalised with productive outcomes and measurable outputs.

Mr Speaker, I am aware that performance monitoring and evaluation departments do exist under the ministries of Finance and National Planning, Health, and Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education, and at Cabinet Office. This notwithstanding, such departments do not possess the necessary authority and national character to monitor, nationally, the performance, efficiency and effectiveness of ministries and other bodies in the implementation of Government policies.

Mr Speaker, it is a fact that developing countries, particularly those in Africa, still need to use long-range strategic planning as an important instrument in the formulation and realisation of key public policy objectives. However, after several years, Zambian policy makers are coming to the painful realisation that, in the absence of a national planning, monitoring and evaluation mechanism, implementation of public policy priorities has become a rather chaotic and haphazard business. Therefore, in a sense, the gist of the Motion is to have a performance monitoring and evaluation national body constituted under the Office of the President, along the same lines as the former National Commission for Development Planning (NCDP).

Mr Speaker, for the information of the House, let me give the background to how the NCDP operated. Following the attainment of political independence, in October, 1964, the new Government recognised that the daunting range of development challenges that confronted it necessitated a planned approach vis-à-vis the formulation and implementation of public policies if it were to build a base of support and legitimacy among the populace. Thus, in 1964, the Office of National Development Planning (ONDP) was established under the Office of the President. Its location in the Office of the President, not in the Ministry of Finance, reflected the importance that the then Head of State attached to the work of the institution. This office, with the involvement of United Nations experts, was the prime force behind the Transitional National Development Plan, which spanned the 1964 to 1966 period. The thrust of the transitional plan envisaged the putting in place of a physical and social infrastructure network that would enhance physical cohesion in the country as well as improve the quality of life of the majority of Zambia’s population. Indeed, during the first post-independence decade, that is, from 1964 to 1974, this instrument of central planning enabled Zambia to register a phenomenal expansion in the national road network, in addition to health and educational facilities that were made available to the most far-flung corners of the republic.

Mr Speaker, following this first decade of national planning, the ONDP was gradually expanded and staffed by a steady stream of graduates from the University of Zambia. Most of the technocratic cadres were sent for training in the best universities in the Western countries whilst short training courses and visits to the People’s Democratic Republic of Korea and the People’s Republic of China were organised from time to time to inculcate the socialist ethos amongst the core staff.

Sir, by the end of the 1970s, the Zambian Government decided to turn the ONDP into the National Commission for Development Planning (NCDP). The change of the name from the ONDP to the NCDP signified more than ideological symbolism on the part of the One-Party regime of the Second Republic. In policy terms, the NCDP emerged as a super economic institution that was charged with the responsibility of drawing up national development priorities as well as monitoring the performance of the Government machinery in terms of delivering public policy outputs. These priorities would be identified on the basis of a broad-based consultative process that involved all the key stakeholders in national economic policy management. The NCDP also evolved into an effective clearing house through which all donor-funded projects were scrutinised to ensure that they were in accord with stipulated national public policy priorities and objectives. In 1982, the NCDP was decentralised through the establishment of field offices attached to provincial Permanent Secretaries in all the country’s nine provinces. In a parallel move, the NCDP set up district planning offices, thus establishing a planning transmission belt to effectively link the Central Government bureaucracy in Lusaka and the field administration at the provincial and district levels. Although the Government machinery could be accused of shortcomings in terms of unsatisfactory basic needs delivery to the public, it should, in all fairness, be pointed out that, through the institutionalised planning apparatus, the Government was able to focus on implementing a clearly-defined set of public policies.

Mr Speaker, following the change of the Government in 1991, the new Government, with the enthusiastic support of Western donors, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), instituted a radical policy re-orientation, which entailed the privatisation of public sector enterprises, a programme that was carried out at break-neck speed. In order to create an enabling environment for the private sector, the Government decided to jettison national economic planning, deriding it as a discredited hangover from the centralised communist model of economic governance that had fallen into disrepute following the collapse of Soviet-style socialism in Eastern and Central Europe. Hence, following the proclamation of the new policy shift in favour of a private sector driven economy, it became obvious that the NCDP did not have a future in the Third Republic. The most telling symbolic act that indicated the downgrading of NCDP was the appointment of an hon. Deputy Minister to head it whereas, during the Second Republic, a full hon. Cabinet Minister superintended over it.

Mr Speaker, in a parallel move aimed at further clipping the wings of the commission, the then Republican President announced, in 1993, the formation of the National Economic Advisory Council (NEAC) to advise Government on issues of economic governance. The fate of the NCDP was sealed in 1994, during the implementation of the National Civil Service Reform Programme, when its functions were taken over by the ministries of Finance and Economic Development, and Local Government and Housing.

Sir, since the NCDP was dismantled, the Zambian Government seems to have lost focus in terms of coherently defining national priorities and ensuring that its administrative machinery works efficiently to implement them. The NEAC appears to function in isolation and without sufficient funding. To date, it remains difficult to point out, in concrete terms, what its achievements have been. Not only is it understaffed, but also appears not to work closely with the key economic ministries, such as the ministries of Finance and Economic Development, Mines and Minerals Development, and Commerce, Trade and Industry.

Mr Speaker, each ministry, now, has a planning division. This proliferation of planning units created a veritable nightmare, in terms of harmonising all these micro-plans into a coherent macro master plan. Thus, in 1993, the Government set up the Policy Analysis Co-ordinating Division (PACD) at Cabinet office to ensure that plans conceived by ministries are scrutinised prior to their submission to the Cabinet in order to secure the seal of approval as duly authorised Government policy documents. The PACD liaison offices have, accordingly, been set up in all ministries to ensure that all of them prepare their policy memoranda in a uniform manner, prior to their submission to the Cabinet for consideration. Sadly, the evidence available shows that, far from being a catalyst for efficiency, the PACD has become a hindrance to policy harmonisation and implementation. Senior civil servants have complained that the memoranda coming from their ministries are held up unnecessarily by this office and, worse still, in some instances, they have been lost in the paperwork, thus compelling ministries to refer back to their files in order to retrieve the misplaced information.

Mr Speaker, in the absence of a co-ordinating apparatus to harmonise the planning function in the Government, it appears that Government agencies, instead of complementing, excel at undermining each other. In view of the foregoing, many progressive national development plans embarked upon at independence, such as the ones below, have not been achieved:

(a)    the diversification  of the economy so that the copper industry  is not the only employer in the economy to ensure that a  greater proportion of domestic demand is satisfied by domestic production  from a large industrial base;
(b)    the expansion of agricultural production, as a top priority, with the aim of improving income and nutritional standards of the population, substantially cutting imports of food, expanding economically justified exports and providing industrial inputs;

(c)    the development of the tourism potential of Zambia to enable this economic sector to play its due role in the diversification of the economy; and

(d)    the promotion of a regional pattern of development, having regard to the characteristics and dimensions of each region’s socio-economic potential and needs.

Mr Speaker, this situation is worrisome because even the little monitoring and evaluation conducted is not very effective and efficient. The institutions tasked with this responsibility are not empowered to guarantee an efficient and effective service delivery. 

Mr Speaker, in conclusion, I would like to urge the hon. Members on both sides to support this Motion on the establishment of a national institution for performance monitoring and evaluation, as it will not only help ensure effective and efficient monitoring and evaluation, but also superintend the current and future departments responsible for policy implementation, monitoring and evaluation in various Government ministries and departments. I wish to end by thanking you for approving my Motion at short notice. I also extend the same gratitude to the Journals and Research offices for their professional guidance.

Mr Speaker, I beg to move.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mucheleka: Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to second the Private Member’s Motion moved by the hon. Member of Parliament for Solwezi Central, Mr Lucky Mulusa, MP, urging the Government to establish a national institution for performance monitoring and evaluation.

Mr Speaker, I wish to acknowledge and appreciate that our country, Zambia, has, in the last five years or so, registered over 6 per cent in its gross domestic product (GDP). This is commendable and every effort must be made to sustain this achievement. We should aim to grow our GDP even beyond 7 per cent. This is necessary if we are to make a visible dent on poverty. Although the economy is said to have grown, in the last few years, it has not translated into a significant reduction in poverty and improved livelihoods of the majority of our people. Poverty levels have remained disturbingly high, especially in rural areas, where they are higher than 75 per cent of the population. Furthermore, the challenge of high youth unemployment is, now, being felt at different levels of our society.

Mr Speaker, this situation calls for serious reflection on, and review of, the way the Government implements development programmes and interventions. It is true that economic growth is a necessary condition for poverty reduction. Nevertheless, in itself, it cannot reduce poverty. Deliberate steps need to be taken to clearly link economic growth and poverty reduction by way of creating institutional mechanisms and capacity to positively correlate growth and poverty reduction.

Mr Speaker, it is sad to note that, since independence, Zambia has had to implement five national development plans, with the sixth currently under implementation, yet no meaningful positive results have been achieved. If these development plans with good objectives, among them, economic diversification, human and infrastructure development; rural development and industrialisation, were fully implemented, poverty levels would not have been this high in the country.

Mr Speaker, part of the explanation for our high poverty levels is that there has been an absence of an efficient and effective national body to superintend over, monitor and evaluate all the Government policies and plans. This has led to a poor service delivery system characterised by inefficiency, lack of co-ordination and progress as well as embezzlement of funds and corruption. 

Mr Speaker, in view of the foregoing, there is a need for the Government to consider establishing a national institution for performance monitoring and evaluation under the Office of the President to work the same way as the former NCDP. Once this body is established, it will not only create a system that will help allocate resources efficiently, but also help monitor and evaluate progress in priority sectors, curb corruption and promote the efficient and effective utilisation of resources.

Mr Speaker, it is important to note that, in the absence of such monitoring and evaluation mechanisms, the objectives of progressive development frameworks, such as the Sixth National Development Plan (SNDP) and the Vision 2030, whose overall aim is to promote sustainable economic development and poverty reduction, may not be realised.

Mr Speaker, it is my considered view that the PF Government can, in the interest of moving the country forward without difficulty, align its manifesto with the national development plans and policies, such as the SNDP, the millennium development goals (MDGs) and the Vision 2030, whose priority sectors are not fundamentally different from those contained in the manifesto.

Mr Speaker, to attain our country’s development goals and objectives, there is a need to strengthen the oversight for monitoring and evaluation of development interventions by putting in place measures for multi-level and regular performance audits. Regular monitoring and evaluation mechanisms to track and record progress will have to be employed in all priority sectors. This approach will allow for an effective feedback mechanism to ensure that the momentum towards the attainment of our development objectives is maintained. 

Sir, the Government, which prides itself in being pro-poor, should practically demonstrate this by formulating pro-poor policies with clear strategies and monitoring and evaluation frameworks. As a matter of urgency, the Government should embrace and strengthen the existing monitoring and evaluation mechanisms, as provided for under the SNDP. These include, among others, the National Development Co-ordinating Committees (NDCCs), the Sector Advisory Groups (SAGs), the Provincial Development Co-ordinating Committees (PDCCs), the District Development Co-ordinating Committees (DDCCs) and the Area Development Committees (ADCs). These will, however, need to be institutionalised and given legal status. 

Sir, the pro-poor sectors, such as agriculture, education, health, infrastructure and social protection, need to be backed by key performance indicators and specific timeframes if they are to be achieved and used to reduce poverty in a more sustainable manner.

Mr Speaker, for this to happen, it is necessary for the Government to show political will of the highest level by moving very fast to set up a national institution on performance, monitoring and evaluation under the Office of the President. The need to build sustainable and efficient monitoring and evaluation systems in order to help improve service delivery in key sectors cannot be over-emphasised because it would help to ensure accountability and transparency in the use of resources meant for poverty reduction. The setting up of this national institution would help to track, for example, the impact of foreign direct investment in the creation of employment and help the Government to identify areas and sectors of intervention with a view to creating maximum positive impact with efficient utilisation of resources.  Additionally, it would strengthen the collaboration between the Government and other stakeholders, such as the co-operating partners, the private sector, civil society and ordinary Zambians.

Mr Speaker, in view of the foregoing, I expect hon. Members on both sides to support this non-controversial Motion.

Mr Speaker, I beg to second.

Mr Namulambe (Mpongwe): Mr Speaker, I thank the mover and seconder of this Motion and, before I go further, state that, during my maiden speech, I indicated that I would support any progressive Motion, whether from the Government or the Opposition, if I am convinced beyond reasonable doubt that it will benefit the people of Zambia.

Sir, the creation of this institution will be like having a person wear a ball-tie and a tie at the same time.

Hon. Government Members: Now, you are talking.

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, I have said so because, for now, we have planning units in almost all the ministries, provinces and districts, and there are professionals in each sector. These are the people who do the monitoring and evaluation. If we did not have these units, budgets would not be formulated.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Namulambe: We continuously implement programmes because of the monitoring and evaluation processes that take place in these various ministries. 

Sir, at the district level, we have the DDCCs, where all the departments …


Mr Speaker: Order on my right!

Mr Namulambe: … and other sectors meet to evaluate the performance of Government projects. At the provincial level, we have the PDCCs where, again, all sectors meet to evaluate what they have been monitoring and see what should be done. At national level, we have the National Development Co-ordinating Committee (NDCC). We also have the Sector Advisory Group Meetings, which are mostly chaired by the Secretary to the Cabinet. This means that all the sector groups meet to evaluate the performance of Government policies.

Sir, at Cabinet Office, there is a division and a Permanent Secretary in charge of policy analysis and co-ordination. This means that there is already an adequate system in place.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, if we say that we did not have a national mechanism for performance monitoring and evaluation from independence, in 1964, to 2011, when the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) left the Government, and that there was no monitoring and evaluation process in place, that would not be correct. This is because, in my view, if we did not have this mechanism in place, then, the Government would not have been functioning. 

Sir, it is very important that, when such Motions are researched on and being moved, we touch on what is available and, sometimes, also consult those who have served in the Government before.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Namulambe: This is because experience is the best teacher.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Namulambe: Yes, we may not have been perfect but, definitely, some of our failures have taught us how to be better.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Namulambe: When there are new ideas, we can combine the lessons we have learnt from our failures with them to make progress in achieving that which is missing.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bwalya (Lupososhi): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me an opportunity to contribute to the debate on the Motion on the Floor, which has been moved by Hon. Mulusa and seconded by Hon. Mucheleka, my neighbour in Luwingu District.

Sir, policies are formulated to provide guidance on both the implementation of Government projects and the utilisation of public resources.

Mr Speaker, the SNDP, as earlier mentioned by the seconder, clearly outlines the safeguards as regards monitoring and evaluation. I do not think that the answer lies in the creation of another institution to monitor and evaluate the policies of this Government. We are talking about issues of cost-cutting and the creation of yet other institutions will not only add to the already over-burdened resource envelope that we have in this republic, but also contribute to the poverty levels in this country.

Sir, monitoring and evaluation is also the responsibility of each ministry in this country. We should be talking of strengthening those departments that are charged with the responsibility of performing this function. If we are talking about the lack of manpower and equipment, then, it would be proper that the hon. Member who moved the Motion chats with the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning or any other hon. Minister charged with the responsibility of implementing Government policies to enquire on the possibility of increasing the manpower in the Planning Unit. To create an institution when we are trying to cut down the size of the Cabinet will not be a wise thing to do. 

Sir, it is always easy to apportion blame and I want to quote what Mr Vernon Mwaanga said in today’s Bulletin & Record. He says that:

“At times, politicians are blamed for the bad weather because farmers will not grow enough food”.


Mr Bwalya: This is exactly what seems to be happening here.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bwalya: We have to come together and come up with solutions to our problems. This country requires the proper utilisation of resources in order to reduce poverty levels, especially in the rural areas. To burden the Office of the President with yet another institution would be too much. We want another institution, yet we are not able to provide a good road infrastructure in the rural areas. 

Mr Speaker, my suggestion to the hon. Member who moved the Motion is that we should work together because this country is ours. Let us not feel constrained to approach and offer advice to any ministry. We have all learnt theories throughout our education. If we want to use theories in a country that requires practical solutions, we will not be able to create jobs.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bwalya: Mr Speaker, it is critical and it will be wise for us to put our minds together, whether one is in the Opposition or the Ruling Party, to ensure that the meager resources we have are applied effectively and efficiently. This will help us have good health, education and road infrastructure and, indeed, improve the agricultural sector. If this is done, we will have enough food to feed our families and export some so that we earn the much-needed foreign exchange.

Mr Speaker, I thank you. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamududu (Bweengwa): Mr Speaker, allow me to start by thanking the mover and seconder of the Motion.

Mr Speaker, whether we agree or disagree with this Motion, the issues raised in it are serious and need the right attention. History has revealed that, normally, the truth has not been popular. It has been the loser in the history of humankind and examples abound. In the United States of America (USA), when Mr Obama was campaigning to be President, he was accused of lacking experience by his competitor, Mr John MacCain. Mr Obama said:

“I know what McCain is saying and I think that, now, what Washington needs is change”. 

Mr Obama was the change that America needed, not the experience that McCain offered, because it had caused despondency in the country. 

Mr Speaker, there are some experiences in this country that we must review. If you look at what has been happening, you can tell that the country is going down the drain. I am going to give you some statistics. You cannot say that we must stick to the system that has not been delivering to our people in this country. That is why there has been a change of the Government. This is because people were saying, “we want change”. Last year’s election was actually a quest for improvement, not a revolution. The systems must be evaluated to see whether they are working. If you stick to your old car that is not doing what it is supposed to, you will not have the right productivity. Sometimes, change is inevitable, including in our systems in the country.

Mr Speaker, the issues that have been raised by the mover and the seconder of this Motion are pertinent. They are the issues that all of us are complaining about in our constituencies. In all the constituencies, there is glaring poverty, declining education standards and low enrolment levels in schools, yet you are saying that there have been monitoring and evaluation systems. Those systems have not been working and something must be done. Whether we agree with the establishment of the institution or not, the spirit of this Motion is relevant. I think we must continue to look for ways in which we can improve on our performance. Over the years, we have seen, amidst attractive macroeconomic indicators, education standards declining. 

Sir, as a Committee, we went to Nkamba Bay on Lake Tanganyika, a very beautiful freshwater lake. We docked on many habours and I could not believe the poverty that I saw. The children do not even know anything about school. Hon. Ng’onga, who happens to be my namesake, can agree with me because he is Member of Parliament for that area.

Mr Ng’onga: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, we went as far as Kaputa and the poverty that I saw in that area is unacceptable, yet you are saying that you have monitoring and evaluation systems. These systems are not working. The call to strengthen the monitoring and evaluation systems in this country should not be dismissed anyhow. It has some truth that must be appreciated. Pertinent issues have been raised in it. You may disagree with the establishment of an institution, but the issue of strengthening the monitoring and evaluation systems is an issue that most of us must discuss. The country is listening. 

Mr Speaker, some children who live along Lake Tanganyika do not know anything about school. We docked at a number of places, including fishing camps, and I could not believe that my brothers and sisters can grow up in such an environment. Literally, they cannot see beyond fishing and there is no future for them. These are very serious issues that we must address. The bleak situation is not only in that area, but also in other places, such as Shang’ombo. Today, the girl child has literally no future. Fifty per cent do not progress in school and this is creating a vicious circle of poverty. The parents of the children are poor and generations after them will be poor. You are imprinting poverty in this country because the systems have not been working. Therefore, we must stand up and begin to evaluate programmes. If something is not working, we must discard it. 

Mr Speaker, at independence, Zambia was at a par with South Korea, economically. It was the second richest country in Africa. It was second to Tunisia. However, looking at the macroeconomic indicators, we have reached rock bottom. What is it that we have not done? There is a need for monitoring and evaluation systems. We will continue changing Governments but, if the systems are not interrogated and strengthened, nothing will change in our communities. We have seen a decline in the provision of health services in our country, which are clearly revealed by the low life expectancy. I am forty-four years old, this year. Literally, going by our life expectancy, I must die anytime from now. People are dying at an early age and the statistics are really falling.


Mr Hamududu: Of course, by God’s grace, I will be there …

Mr Speaker: Address the Speaker even over your long life.


Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, I thank you for wishing me long life.


Mr Hamududu: I know that it is God’s secret and I will do my best while I still have this life. 

Mr Speaker, the infrastructure of this country is worsening. When some of us were young, in the 1970s, we had better roads. Every year, we saw graders in our villages. I am sure Hon. Chikwanda can attest to this because, at one time, he was the hon. Minister of Finance. We could see that every council was capacitated. Today, the children in the far-flung areas of our country do not even know what a grader looks like. There was a time I took a grader to a certain place and, when the children saw it, they ran away. I had to call them back from the bush.


Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, as evidenced, the link between a strong economy and poverty reduction in our country is employment. You can only reduce poverty if you use what the poor people have, which is their labour and land. The country has failed to leverage what is available to improve the living standards of the people.  

Mr Speaker, we are talking about growing more food. We have been growing maize. In last year’s Budget, we spent K3 trillion to buy maize, but poverty has not decreased. Currently, hunger has even increased. There is something wrong with our Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) and our agricultural policies, which are basically based on maize. We have failed to diversify agriculture and people are wondering why we are so poor and our people hungry when we have fertile land and adequate fresh water in each province. There is a river in each province. In some countries, there are no rivers even if you went round the provinces. Even after the rains, you will not see any flood, yet those countries are doing better than us. Where have we failed to diversify our agriculture? In Africa, this country has the best competitive advantage in agriculture, but we still depend on mining. We are failing to realise our full potential in agriculture because the State is not playing a strategic role. The reason countries like Singapore, Taiwan and South Korea surpassed us is that the Governments in these countries have played a strategic role, and I do not mean nationalism, just a strategic role. The state must put in place a framework for development. Even if you attract so much foreign direct investment (FDI), it will not sort out your problems of unemployment. Investors are coming to make profits and they will bring machines, as you have seen in the mining sector. If you go to the North-Western Province, which has received a lot of FDI, the poverty and unemployment levels are high because mining is mechanised. It is the Government that is supposed to put in place a framework that will include others. Inclusive policies require the Government to play a strategic role. You cannot run away from that. If you continue with business as usual, this country is consigned to poverty forever.

Mr Speaker, if, for example, in the North-Western Province, there is a big chunk of land, you can go and tell the chiefs to use the land to create wealth. That is the only way we can create wealth. The Government must think through this. If, for example, there is a crop with market potential for many years to come, for instance, soya beans or sugarcane, an investor can be given 5,000 hectares and a condition that he accommodates out-grower schemes around that farm so that farmers begin to cash in on this mainstream.

Sir, what is happening, in this country, is that the formal sector is shrinking, while the informal sector is growing. We need to reverse the situation. The informal sector must begin to be swallowed up by the formal sector and the formal sector must expand because it is the one that is linked to the global economy, where the money is and it is the Government that needs to put in place the policies to reverse the trend. If you give a farmer 5,000 hectares to grow soya beans in the North-Western Province and, after he makes money, the only thing he can do is employ people and pay them meagre wages, that is not development. If you do not link the farm with the farmers around it, your growth policy is not inclusive. That is what your people are doing. Go and study the Nakambala Out-grower Scheme and you will see what it has done to Kaleya and the surrounding areas. The farmers around Nakambala who are on the out-grower scheme with Illovo Sugar have more money than those who grow maize. If the Government had a sugarcane plantation in every province and designed an out-grower system, this would create more jobs and there would be more people growing and selling to the owner of the sugarcane plantation, who would have a market outside. You have to make such linkages for the people, not creating what we call economic enclaves. You give someone 10,000 hectares of land to grow sugarcane or soya beans and this person makes his/her profits, employs labourers and pays them K400, 000, and you say we are creating employment. What we want is a system that goes beyond creating employment. We should create a middle class through these linkages. Some countries have done that. Even in the mining sector, we need to put systems in place where there is vertical diversification of mineral products.

Dr Chituwo: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, I am completely lost. Is the hon. Member of Parliament for Bweengwa in order not to address the Motion, which is promoting the establishment of an institution in the Office of the President for the purpose of performance monitoring and evaluation? Is my younger brother in order to debate poverty reduction, instead? I need your serious ruling, Sir.

Hon. Members: Hear, Hear!

Mr Speaker: My ruling is that the hon. Member for Bweengwa should be more focused on the Motion. I am not suggesting that the arguments he is advancing or his debate, generally, is irrelevant. Certainly not, but I think that the point is one of focus. The Motion is very specific. Obviously, it includes the issues that he has raised but, ultimately, it is proposing the establishment of an institution in order to address some of the concerns that you have referred to, hence my urging you to focus on that issue.

Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, with that solid background, I will move to the specific issues of the Motion. I am debating the content, not the title, of the Motion and I thought I should put this debate in context. 

With regard to the way forward regarding performance monitoring and evaluation, I have indicated to you, Sir, that we have declining statistics in terms of the social conditions of our people. Amidst an economy that is growing and receiving FDI, and attractive macroeconomic indicators, there is no improvement in terms of the living standards of our people.

Sir, now, I want to talk about one particular tool, the Budget. Over the years, the monitoring and evaluation of the performance of the Budget, which is a key tool in achieving the desired economic results, has been very weak. 

Mr Speaker, there are institutions that are charged with the responsibility of monitoring and evaluation in this country. However, they have been very weak and not been empowered to deliver. One of them is Parliament, which must play a critical oversight role at every stage of the budgetary process in the ministries so that we begin to produce results and make the Government accountable. For example, most of the plans that we have in this country do not even come to this House for adoption so that we know whether they are the aspirations of the Zambian people. For example, we expect the national development plans, the Green Paper and the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) to be brought to this House so that we debate them and see whether they are in line with the aspirations of the Zambian people. The Budget, which this House approves, is supposed to be based on these policies. However, we approve the Budget in a vacuum; without knowing whether it addresses the key issues in the development plans that will help us move in a particular direction.

Sir, this country is just going round in circles. With the Vision 2030, the Sixth National Development Plan (SNDP) and the MTEF, we must be moving in a clear direction using the Budget. Therefore, as the institution that plays an oversight role, which is monitoring and evaluation of the system, we must become more involved so that we make the Government more accountable.

Mr Speaker, at the moment, we are not sure whether the Government recognises the national plans that are there. Someone is saying, “Here is the manifesto”, meanwhile, in the office, there is the SNDP, Vision 2030 and the Green Paper. The Government should improve. If there are weaknesses in the Vision 2030 or SNDP, they must be fine-tuned. You cannot just come as if you are just founding a country, no. It is us to make improvements so that these systems begin to work.

Hon. Members: Hear, Hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, we also want to monitor the expenditure tracking reports. These must be provided. We must know if the money that we have approved is being disbursed. We want to know the performance of the Budget. For example, what are the results when you give money for roads? There is a need to identify which roads these are and if they have been worked on. This Parliament does not even sit to review the performance of the previous year’s Budget. In other countries, they have a pre-Budget statement that is debated as a precursor to the Budget.

Mr Speaker, in this country, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, who is my dear uncle, reviews the previous Budget on the same day he is presenting the new one. There is a need to put a timeline to stipulate the involvement of Parliament at every stage in the proposed Budget Act so that we can begin to help the Executive and play the oversight role at every stage.

Sir, you know that integrity is very important. It requires monitoring because it is part of the process.
Mr Speaker: Address the Chair or else you will be detracted.

Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, it is part of the process. It is a stage in the process. You cannot run this country without integrity. Integrity is part of the system that we must monitor. If the levels of integrity, honesty and truthfulness are very low in the Government, you will not deliver. You talked about bringing the windfall tax and more money in people’s pockets when campaigning but, the minute you win, you say, “No” to it. That is lacking integrity.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamududu: Then you will achieve what people were aspiring for. All these things must be interrogated and monitored continuously. 

Sir, I am happy that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning increased one performance target that we can monitor, the mineral royalty tax, from 3 per cent to 6 per cent. We want to know whether, in quantum terms, the money from mining has gone up. We want that report. We want to know whether the mineral royalty tax will capture more money than the windfall tax would have. These issues are very important. These are the issues that we must monitor. 

Mr Speaker, on oversight, Parliament must begin to ask for accountability from its duty bearers, who are the Hon. Government Members of Parliament. People are asking hon. Members of Parliament why roads are not being done, yet it is not the duty of the Member of Parliament to do so. It is Government officials’. This time, hon. Members of Parliament must go and explain to their constituents that it is the Government officials who are supposed to mend their roads and construct schools and clinics. I am going to all my wards to have meetings and explain that it is a duty bearer who must account. Some hon. Members of Parliament have lost seats when it is the Government that has failed the people. Therefore, the duty bearer must be put on the hot seat to begin to deliver. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, this country needs functional performance monitoring and evaluation mechanisms to make the duty bearers accountable so that our people begin to enjoy some of their human rights. Education is a human right. If it is possible to give free education, give it. We must progressively provide for the rights and capabilities of the people.  It is not right to have people going hungry in a rich country. If it is possible for us to raise the money to do all what people aspire for, we must do it. If we do not, we are denying our people the enjoyment of their human rights. If Zambia is a rich country, then Zambians must have free education, good health facilities and good infrastructure. If not, the Government, which is the duty bearer, is denying the people their human rights and capabilities, and they will have to account for that. If they do not account to us, they will account to God. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order!

Prospective debaters, please, bear in mind the nature of the Motion before the House.  The hon. Member for Kalomo Central may debate.  

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central): Mr Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity to debate. 

Sir, my thoughts over this Motion are split. Firstly, I do not agree with the title. Secondly, the content makes sense. The Motion contends that there has been inadequate economic beneficiation from implemented policies since independence. This is not true.  


Mr Muntanga: I was there before independence.  You cannot say that regional planning was a bad Government policy. That is what developed the roads in rural areas. The policy of the Government, then, was to build schools and that was done. That is why all of you have gone to school. Therefore, you cannot say that there was no benefit from such policies. There are so many other good policies, including some on agriculture. 

Mr Speaker, I agree with the fact that we tend to forget why certain policies were put in place and go against them or destroy them. The mover is an ardent believer in supporting the Government. 


Mr Muntanga: He likes to support you, but you do not want to support him. The man wants to use the Motion to make you form …

Mr Speaker: Order!

Hon. Member, you are debating the mover, instead of the Motion. 


Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, the mover wants a national institution in the Office of the President. There are economic advisors in that office, but he says that they are not working; … 

Hon. UPND Member: They are irrelevant.

Mr Muntanga: … that they are irrelevant. 

Mr Speaker, I am not sure of that statement. What I know, for sure, is that it is not only the Office of the President that needs to be monitored. Each ministry must have very good monitoring systems. That is the essence of the matter. You must monitor and evaluate all ministries. For instance, some hon. Ministers simply wake up and come up with some idea and it is made policy. Recently, we had a statutory instrument to ban tujilijili with absolutely no regard for the fact that the companies that produced them were allowed to do so by the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA). There was total disregard of procedure. You have banned the tujilijili because you think you are saving people’s lives. The sachets were 60mls, but you have allowed, in that instrument, the repackaging of tujilijili in 200mls bottles. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Muntanga: I wish I had known that I would debate today. I would have brought the bottles here to show you. It, now, means that people will not buy the 60mls, but the 200mls, which is going for K3,000. 


Mr Muntanga: How do you arrest the drinking of tujilijili? They are still there. 

Hon. UPND Member: In bottles now. 

Mr Muntanga: You are not monitoring the implementation of the decision that you made. You should check how beneficial a policy is to the country before you implement it. We mean well when we tell you to watch what you do. I am not in the habit of advising the Government because, after all, I am in the Opposition. I would want them to do certain things wrong to oust them. 


Mr Muntanga: In any case, when you do not listen to me, you can have so many questions, but the objective is to oust you.


Mr Muntanga: We were here together with the PF and they shot down anything that was from the MMD. The intention was to ensure that you are there. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: This Motion is friendly to you. Government policies must be monitored and evaluated so that those that do not benefit Zambia and its people; those that do not take the country forward, are stopped. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, during the MMD administration, we wanted to have fuel reserves, but it was a big issue in this House because of the question of where the funds to stock such reserves would come from. Eventually, a fuel levy was introduced and that money was to be collected from all oil companies through the ministry so that it could keep buying the reserves. There was a programme and I think that the then hon. Minister of Energy and Water Development, Hon. Mutati, still remembers. However, when they left office, there were still no reserves and, when we asked, we were told that the money was used to cushion the price of fuel. At what time do you check that your policies are wrong? 

Sir, we are still on square one. If we had fifteen-day strategic fuel reserves and an extra thirty days, we would be having forty-five-day reserves. Those twenty days we are being told about, during which we had fuel shortages would not have mattered. We would not even have felt the impact. 

Sir, there is something wrong somewhere; a lack of policies that can benefit Zambians. It is then that people, instead of looking at the failure of the policy, will worry about a good gesture like giving Malawi a few litres of fuel. You know, when you are hungry, in your home, your children are even concerned about what food you are going to give to your neighbour. It does not matter whether you are good or kind. They will ask you why. 

This Motion, therefore, contains some material that will compel us to ask this Government to consider because it is important to monitor and evaluate the policies formulated, especially, now, that we have so many new policies being tried. We changed our educational system from standards to forms and to grades. Now, we are being told there is no secondary. It seems we are going back, somehow. Let us have an evaluation. We do not need the Office of the President or the President, alone, to do that. That is why it is important that such policies are checked.

Sir, if I was on the right of this House, I would have supported this Motion. At the moment, I want them to fail.


Mr Muntanga: I do not want it to be supported …


Mr Muntanga: … so that you do not evaluate at all. So, you will ban the selling of tujilijili, today, but they will continue to be sold on the market. People will say they do not know what they are doing. Instead of allowing sachets, which are common in the region, they have brought bottles, which are more harmful to the environment. I have never seen spirit bottles closed with a cork like beer. This is what is happening, now, because that is what the statutory instrument says. As we look at the content of this Motion, I wish to remind all the hon. Ministers, as they proceed to formulate certain policies, to ask themselves whether the policies are going to take the country forward.

Sir, there was a time when we had a problem with foreign exchange in Zambia; when we had to apply to get US$500 when going out of the country. We had to wait for it to be authorised by the then hon. Minister of Finance. Unfortunately, we are about to go back to that situation.


Mr Muntanga: They are saying that we must be controlled to share foreign exchange. We are capable of developing our economy and I know that you people are very good at microeconomic development and improvement.

Mr Speaker: Address the Speaker!

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, through you, …


Mr Muntanga: … if the people on your right cared to forget the bad things in the United National Independence Party (UNIP) Government, but pick the good things and match them up with the good things in Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD), and their own ideas, then …

Mr Nkombo: They are all from the MMD!

Mr Muntanga: No, it is only the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning who announced that he is an hon. Minister of Finance, but not planning.


Mr Muntanga: He said that, not me.


Mr Muntanga: It took Mr Speaker to guide that there is a Ministry of Finance and National Planning.


Mr Nkombo: Miles Sampa said it!


Mr Muntanga: The hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning looks surprised, yet it is his Deputy who said that. We were shocked to see that this Government has no plan.


Mr Nkombo: No planning!


Mr Mwila: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mwila: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Member of Parliament for Kalomo Central in order to continue debating on an issue on which you already ruled? Is he in order to continue debating on the same issue?


Mr Speaker: Order!

My ruling is that the point of order is misplaced.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: My concern, however, is that the hon. Member of Parliament for Kalomo Central is not focusing on the Motion. He is digressing from the Motion and it is little wonder that he is attracting points of order of that sort.


Mr Speaker: This is because he is not debating the Motion.

My advice to those of you, who wish to debate this Motion, is that, please, be focused. Perhaps, it is a complicated Motion. I am not too sure.


Mr Speaker: We seem to be digressing from the sense of the Motion. I do not think the concept of evaluation is being contested by anybody. The question is on the means of evaluation, and there is a very specific proposal. I was hoping that we confine ourselves to the Motion but, in the process, diverse examples are being given and we are really wondering away from the Motion, which is a source of anxiety not just on the part of the hon. Members, but the Speaker as well.

You may continue.

Mr Muntanga: Thank you, Mr Speaker. 

Sir, questions of monitoring and evaluation are so valid that we can only emphasise to the Government that we will fail to drive our points home if we do not remind ourselves about the failures of certain policies, problems and situations, such as the tujilijili that I gave as an example.


Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Muntanga: We will not be able to explain …

Mr Kalaba: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Kalaba: Mr Speaker, I rise on a very serious point of order. Is the hon. Member debating on the Floor, whom we are all trying to listen to attentively, trying to make head and tail of his debate, in order to continue driving away from the direction on which you have just guided, and drifting back to the issue of tujilijili? Is he in order, Sir?

Mr Speaker: I think my ruling is obvious. He is not and I urge the hon. Member of Parliament for Kalomo Central to debate in his usual focused way. There is a specific Motion, here, and I think that we need to look at the Motion more than anything else. If we continue dragging away from it, unfortunately, we will lose very precious time. If you look at the order paper, you will see that it is congested. We are not sure whether we will even finish the business this evening.

In my view, the Motion is very clear: it is proposing a panacea to the problems of failing to evaluate. The question is: What is the panacea?


Mr Speaker: Not whether or not we should be evaluating. That is not the issue. It is about what mechanism we should put in place in order to secure this system, concept or notion of evaluating. That is what the hon. Member for Solwezi Central has put before the House. So, if we move away from that Motion, then, we are not doing any justice to the Motion and, indeed, to our time.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, in the first instance, I stated that I did not agree with the background that prompted the moving of this Motion. I said that very clearly. I also said that, while I do not agree with this background to the need, I realised that the cause of the failure of the policies is not so much the failure of what happened just after independence, as stated. It was at that time that I thought I should raise those points.

Sir, to establish a national institution in the Office of the President for the sole purpose of monitoring varied ministries, departments and the whole country, that I do not see as a panacea.


Mr Speaker: I think you are getting focussed, now!


Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, I do not agree with the establishment of the proposed institution. What I expect is that, if most policies, including the most recent one of banning tujilijili, …


Mr Muntanga: … which are still being sold on the market, were monitored, then, we could make some headway. If they are failing, within the ministry, to check on such a small thing, how can they succeed in establishing a national institution in the Office of the President?

Sir, we might as well remove everybody working in the monitoring and evaluation units from the Civil Service and simply say that the Office of the President must check on everything. We must find ways of monitoring and evaluating each ministry and department for each action and policy. That I agree with and, maybe, that is where the panacea lies for the problems the country is facing.

I thank you, Sir.


Mrs Masebo (Chongwe): Mr Speaker, I will be very brief because, as you have rightly guided, this is a very straight-forward Motion. I want, from the outset, to say that I do not support this Motion, which is urging the Executive to establish a national institution for performance monitoring and evaluation.

Sir, hon. Members have had difficulties to debate this Motion because, basically, they have the same views as the ones the previous speaker expressed at the end of his statement, which I support.

Mr Speaker, sometimes, we shy away from stating that we do not support a Motion that has been brought to this House by our colleagues because we think they may misunderstand us. We, instead, opt to go round in circles when contributing to the debate on such Motions.

Sir, I appreciate the fact that the mover and the seconder brought this Motion to the House. I think that is healthy for a democratic country. I do not want the mover to get discouraged from bringing such Motions to this House. Sometimes, like Hon. Namulambe said, if a Motion is good, we shall support it, regardless of where it is coming from. If we think that the Motion is not good, we should not support it. In this instance, we should not be ashamed to tell our good friend that his Motion is not a good one. We should tell our colleague that we shall not support his Motion for some very simple reasons, which I shall now talk about.

Mr Speaker, firstly, he is proposing that we come up with a national institution that should sit at State House. I do not know whether he knows that we have a department that actually analyses Government policies at Cabinet Office.

Sir, as Hon. Namulambe correctly stated, we have monitoring and evaluation units in almost all Government ministries, departments and parastatal institutions because it is a necessary tool for continuously assessing the policies of the Government, including the recent ban on tujilijili by the Ministry of Local Government and Housing. Even we, at the local level, have helped the ministry to ensure that the ban is adhered to. For instance, in Chongwe, I can tell you that even I, as an hon. Member of Parliament, have monitored the effectiveness of the ban on tujilijili. In my constituency, we had many unemployed youths getting drunk as early as six o’clock. Now, the situation has improved, but my only worry is that the ministry has not done anything about Kachasu because it has, now, become the alternative drink.

Mr Speaker, monitoring and evaluation systems are already in place. I agree that they have flaws that we need to address. The proposal to create an institution as an answer to those flaws is not good, in my view.

Sir, the expensive proposal to create a national institution for monitoring and evaluation cannot be implemented because we do not have the financial muscle to do so. It will also just be a duplication of work, which is already being done by other Government units. It will not sort out the problems that the mover identified. 

Mr Speaker, the hon. Member of Parliament for Bweengwa spoke very well about issues that made economic sense. I think, maybe, we are just using this Motion to show how well we understand certain issues. It was, actually, important for some of the new hon. Members of Parliament to learn a few things from what Hon. Hamududu said.

Sir, the hon. Member talked about some structural issues. We have the DDCC and the PDCC. All these structures were put in place to analyse the performance of Government policies …

Mr Miyutu : On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, I rise on a very serious point of order. I, somehow, agree that we are new in this House. However, is the hon. Member of Parliament for Chongwe in order, really, to say that Hon. Hamududu was contributing on the Floor of this House for the purpose of teaching us some things? Was she in order to seem to suggest that our knowledge levels are so low that we needed to learn some things from Hon. Hamududu’s contribution?

Mr Speaker: I think you have put a lot of words in her mouth. The hon. Member was simply acknowledging the eloquence of the contribution by the hon. Member for Bweengwa. He gave a very informed opinion on a number of issues that would qualify as a lecture. Others may choose to take it literally as a lecture or otherwise. The hon. Member for Kalabo Central is free to interpret things in his own way. I think that is the spirit in which the compliment was made.

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, I was just trying to show my appreciation for a good lecture, from which all of us have actually learnt. 

Sir, before the point of order was raised, I was talking about the DDCC, the PDCC and the NDCC. All those are structures that have been put in place. The only weakness is that the structures have no legal backing. I think that this is the problem that has caused some of them not to be effective. Once, we learnt, here, in Parliament, that the NDCC never met in a particular year. So, you can imagine that, as much as the DDCC, at the district level, was meeting, maybe, once every three months, at the national level, there was nothing happening. Therefore, there was no proper co-ordination in the implementation of some Government policies and programmes. 

Sir, I also think that it is not true to that this administration has thrown out everything that the MMD regime was doing. It is on the Floor of this House that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning told us that the Sixth National Development Plan (SNDP) was still being implemented. What the Executive has done is to simply harmonise it with the PF manifesto and that is the normal way of doing things.  If there is a policy that is found not to be good after being analysed, the PF Government had the right to change it according to their election campaign promises.

Sir, when hon. Ministers are explaining certain things, it is important for us to listen very attentively so that we do not confuse ourselves. I have noticed that, sometimes, when it suits us, we say that the PF Government has no plans for certain things and is, instead, using the ones left behind by the previous administration. When it suits us, again, we turn around and ask why they are throwing away all the plans, including those which were good?

Mr Speaker, the PF Government has clearly stated how it is going to run this country. As you are aware, even this year’s Budget was not 100 per cent a PF Budget. Its preparation started in the MMD era and was carried forward. The SNDP is still being implemented because, although it is called an MMD plan, it came from the people at the grassroots. So, even if the PF Government went back to consult the people of Chongwe, they would say the same things they told the Government that was in place when the SNDP was being put together. The people of Chongwe said that they wanted a university, water and good roads. Those are the things that are in the SNDP. So, even if, tomorrow, the United Party for National Development (UPND) took over power, it would not need to re-invent the wheel.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, in the most unlikely event that the UPND took over power. 


Mrs Masebo: Sir, I think that we need to be very clear that this Government has got plans. In fact, if you recall, during the campaigns prior to the last election, the PF articulated its policies very well and that is why it won the elections.

Mr Speaker, there are some policy promises that the PF made, but have not been implemented. This is because, now that it is in the Government, it has analysed the promises and consulted much more effectively. It wants to do only the things that will improve the lives of the people of Zambia. I think that the PF Government only needs to explain some policies clearly to the people so that they can begin to understand better the reasons certain things could be done and others could not. It is because some of the things may not be practicable and you can only know the practicability of some things when you get in the driving seat. 

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Masebo: What I am saying is that this is the normal way of doing things. There is nothing artificial about it. That is why people from the UPND and the MMD could not go to bed together yesterday, but, today, they are in bed together.
Hon. Members: Aah!

Mrs Masebo: They are thinking alike.

Mr Livune: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order, Sir.

Mr Livune: Mr Speaker, the debater on the Floor of the House informed us that she would not take long to debate this Motion, but I am seeing her filibustering. Is she in order to go contrary to her promise by unnecessarily prolonging her debate?

Mr Speaker: She has been allocated time …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: … within which to make her contribution. However, I am concerned with the expression of the phrase ‘going to bed’. The usage of that pharase is unparliamentary. I also noticed that, in the initial stages of her debate, Hon. Masebo was focused because, I think, she wanted to fulfill her promise of being brief. I note, regrettably, that she has veered off the frame of the Motion. Please, bear in mind the sense of the Motion as you exhaust your time.

You may continue.

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, thank you for your guidance. First of all, I withdraw the phrase ‘going to bed’ and replace it with the words ‘agreeing on certain policies’. That is, of course, for expediency.

   I thank you, Mr Speaker, for your guidance on the way I am debating. I agree with your guidance, even though I wish to state that the interjections, sometimes, distract an individual’s line of thought. I have noticed that, even though they have not come out clearly, all the speakers have, actually, not supported this Motion. They are just shying away from explicitly stating that they do not support it. I think that we should not waste too much time debating this Motion. That is why I wanted to be brief. We have all learnt a lot from the issues articulated by very experienced hon. Members. However, this Motion is misplaced and not proposing the right solution. We all agree that there is a need to monitor, evaluate and strengthen all the institutions that we have but, really, to establish an institution at State House, for me, is more than putting a tie on a bow-tie; it is like …


I rest my case, Mr Speaker.

Thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

The Vice-President (Dr Scott): Mr Speaker, I thank the mover and seconder of this Motion for bringing it to this House because it brought out some very important issues, albeit with a certain amount of wondering off the track. However, we, as the Government, understand some of the frustrations expressed by the hon. Members as they debated the Motion. We understand that, in forty-eight years, since the ONDP was set up in 1963, if I am correct, there has been a disappointing degree of a lack of human development that manifests itself, particularly, in high levels of unemployment and run-down infrastructure across the country. If that is what the mover is trying to say, we are with him. However, it is not institutions that run the affairs of man or people. Rather, it is people who run the affairs of institutions. There is the disease, in this country, of setting up institutions that do not serve their intended purpose. The mover, himself, reminded us of when we went from the NCDP, NEAC, and the Planning Division in the Ministry of Finance and National Planning to the Policy Analysis and Co-ordination Unit at Cabinet Office. What is going on? Is the problem being addressed? No. There is a belief that, if you get the institutional structure right, then, somehow, the people and policies will not matter, in progress being made. It is like saying the Zambian National Football Team was successful in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea, and in Ndola, the other day, because they got the institutional structure right. They were playing four-four-one or four-four-two, …


The Vice-President: … instead of …

Mr Speaker: That is a new formation.


Hon. Government Members: Boma!

The Vice-President: Maybe, I have stumbled on the answer. The PF was not voted into the offices it occupies for its imagination. It was for its energy, intolerance for mediocrity, and for all the things that make a Government run properly. Even the ancestors may have played a part as they did in Gabon.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: It is because there is full life and people believe in life. They believe in people who do not tolerate smelly hospitals, for example. Once you have got those basics right, the institutional machinery can be used to do the job. 

Mr Speaker, remember, in this country, we have so many institutions. Somebody was saying to me the other day that we needed a public protector, but how many public protectors are we going to have? Already, we have got the Ombudsman or Ombudswoman, the Commission for Investigations and the Human Rights Commission. We keep creating institutions and going round in circles and that is our problem. We lack belief in ourselves and the determination to improve our country.

I thank the mover, but I am afraid we cannot support him as he rightly guessed at the beginning.

Thank you, Sir.

Mr Mulusa: Mr Speaker, I wish to thank everyone who debated this Motion. All the contributions were very enriching and intellectually stimulating. That is what we need as we soldier on, individually and collectively, in search of solutions to the challenges that we face. We should always endevour to learn from whatever comes out of such debates.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Question put and negatived.


Mr V. Mwale (Chipangali): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that this House do adopt the Report of the Public Accounts Committee on the Report of the of the Auditor-General for 2009 on the Accounts of Parastatal Bodies for the First Session of the Eleventh National Assembly, laid on the Table of the House on 14th June, 2012.

Mr Speaker: Is the Motion seconded?

Mr Matafwali (Bangweulu): Mr Speaker, I beg to second the Motion.

Mr V. Mwale: Mr Speaker, your Committee, in line with its terms of reference, as specified in the Standing Orders, considered the 2009 report of the Auditor-General on the accounts of parastatal bodies.

Mr Speaker, let me start by paying tribute to the Auditor-General for, yet again, producing a highly professional and helpful report. Whilst drawing attention to irregularities, the Auditor-General was able to discriminate between trivial and substantive irregularities that needed to be brought to this House.

Mr Speaker, sixteen institutions were cited in the report and your Committee requested both written and oral submissions from the controlling officers of the subject ministries. Your Committee wished to know the reasons that caused the audit queries and what corrective measures had been put in place, if any, to correct the situation.

Mr Speaker, in this report, we have suggested, in some instances, that disciplinary action be taken, particularly in instance in which officers failed to follow financial regulations without cause or there appeared to be clear cases of theft and misappropriation. We have suggested that such cases be referred to the investigative wings for further investigations and possible prosecution.

Mr Speaker, the seconder of this Motion will speak about the accounting irregularities in general. I will, in this regard, go straight into highlighting the key issues that your Committee dealt with.

Mr Speaker, the Government has an obligation to ensure that all parastatal bodies in this country operate efficiently and effectively in the execution of their mandates. One way in which the Government do this is through the analysis of annual reports, and your Committee is disappointed that nine of the sixteen institutions in the report were not up-to-date in the preparation of financial statements. Prominent among them were the following:

(a)    National Savings and Credit Bank (NSCB);

(b)    Citizens’ Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC); 

(c)    Local Authority Superannuation Fund (LASIF); 

(d)    Nkana Water and Sewerage Company (NWSC);

(e)    Zambia Public Procurement Authority (ZPPA); and

(f)    Zambia Institute of Mass Communication Education Trust (ZAMCOM). 

Sir, your Committee is saddened that the failure to have audited financial statements resulted in the Auditor-General failing to ascertain the financial position and performance of these institutions. In the same vein, it was difficult, on our part, as legislators, to assess the stewardship of management teams in these institutions in the absence of financial and annual reports. Your Committee is of the view that this matter should be addressed without further delay and, therefore, urges the Government to urgently come up with measures to ensure that these entities meet their reporting obligations.

Mr Speaker, let me, now, touch on a few matters pertaining to some institutions that your Committee dealt with. First is the issue of declining membership at LASIF. Your Committee observed that, according to the National Pensions Act no 40 of 1996, all associated authorities and employees employed after 1st January, 2000, are required to contribute their pensions to the National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA), rather than LASIF. Consequently, the number of active members contributing to LASIF had declined from 19,607, in 1997, to 6,976, in September, 2010, whereas the number of pensioners increased from 5,835, to 10,449 during the same period. This will make it very difficult for LASIF to meet its obligation of paying pensions to those who have retired as the contributions from existing members cannot meet this obligation. I must say that people like Hon. Masebo have talked about this issue in the House time and again, including when we discussed the Report on Delegated Legislation, last week. I hope that we are going to see action from the Government after this. 

Mr Speaker, in simple terms, LASIF is currently a diminishing scheme. In fact, when its management appeared before your Committee, it indicated that, if nothing was done, the institution will be insolvent by 2014. Let me add that the Public Service Pension Fund (PSPF) is in the same predicament. Your Committee is, therefore, of the view that the problem demands quick and decisive action from the Government.

Mr Speaker, your Committee also observed that the State Lotteries Board is practically insolvent and can no longer execute its mandate. For instance, the working capital had worsened from negative K1.1 billion, in 2004, to negative K3.1 billion, in 2009. The liquidity position is so desperate that the institution has even failed to employ a Chief Executive Officer (CEO) because it cannot manage to pay one. The main reason for this is under-capitalisation and the fact that it can no longer compete with the new players on the market. Your Committee was informed by the Secretary to the Treasury that the Government has no money to recapitalise this institution and that it was considering turning the institution into a regulator of the industry. Your Committee urges the Government to take decisive action on the matter without further delay. 

Mr Speaker, another issue that confronted your Committee concerned the high staff-related costs at the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO). Your Committee is concerned that the company staff costs, as a percentage of the total operational cost, ranged between 64 per cent and 69 per cent during the period under review. This is an indication that the bulk of the cost required for service delivery and improvement goes to remuneration, and that saddens your Committee, especially that this is happening at the a when the company is operating without an approved staff establishment. Under these circumstances, it is difficult to establish the optimum staff levels for the organisation, which could be the reason staff costs at the company are high. Therefore, your Committee urges the management and board of ZESCO to quickly come up with measures to reduce on staff-related costs so that a higher proportion of the operational cost goes towards service provision. Further, the company should introduce an approved staff establishment plan without further delay.

Mr Speaker, another institution that deserves mention is the National Economic Advisory Council (NEAC). Your Committee is concerned that, although the Cabinet recommended the passing of an Act of Parliament to establish this council in May, 1993, to date, it this has not been done. Your Committee wondered what the position of the Government is on the existence of the council. It further wondered whether there is any benefit that is being derived from the existence of this council by the Government. It, therefore, urges the Government to urgently pass legislation to legalise the operations of the council or, indeed, clarify the position on its future.

Mr Speaker, let me conclude by thanking you and the office of the Clerk of the National Assembly for the guidance and support rendered to your Committee during its deliberations. I further thank all controlling officers and Chief Executive Officers who appeared before your Committee to make submissions on various issues raised in the Auditor-General’s Report for their co-operation. Finally, I wish to acknowledge and appreciate the advice rendered to your Committee by the officers from the Office of the Auditor-General, the Accountant-General and the Controller for Internal Audits. 

Mr Speaker, with these few remarks, I beg to move.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

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

Mr Matafwali (Bangweulu): Now, Mr Speaker. 

Mr Speaker, in seconding the Motion on the Floor of this august House, let me take this opportunity to thank Hon. Vincent Mwale, Member of Parliament for Chipangali Constituency, who, in his capacity as Chairperson of your Committee, moved the Motion and ably highlighted the pertinent issues deliberated by your Committee.

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1815 hours to 1830 hours.

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

Mr Matafwali: Mr Speaker, before the break, I was commending the Chairperson of your Committee on the able manner in which he moved this Motion.

Sir, your Committee would like to bring to your attention its concerns over the escalating levels of the failure by the Chief Executive Officers of the parastatals cited in the Auditor-General’s Report to adhere to the provisions of the Public Financial Regulations in the management of public funds appropriated by this House. This failure on the part of the erring officers was attested to by, among other things, the failure to adhere to the guidelines pertaining to the retirement of imprest, …


Mr Speaker: Order!

May the hon. Members on my right desist from drowning the debate of their colleague.

Can the hon. Member continue, please.

Mr Matafwali: … procurement and tender procedures and poor record keeping, thereby creating a conducive environment for theft of public resources and corruption to thrive. Consequently, your Committee feels that, in order to control this scourge, there is every need to re-visit the existing legislation and regulations pertaining to sanctions on erring officers, with the view to galvanising and implementing a cocktail of measures to strengthen the current framework.

Sir, your Committee noted the weak management structure in some of these parastatal companies, which compromised, instead of reinforcing, the pursuit of good corperate governance tenets. For example, the former Executive Secretary at National Economic Advisory Council had three contracts of employment from 2005 to 2013 signed by himself on behalf of the employer. Further, the employment contract for the Director-General at the Zambia Public Procurement Authority for the period 2009 to 2012 was signed by the Director of Training, instead of the Board Chairperson and examples of such anomalies abound. It is your Committee’s view that appropriate skills, experience, passion for service, transparency and accountability are virtues that should drive Zambia’s development agenda. As such, it recommends to the appointing authorities that only individuals embracing these virtues be appointed to the boards of parastatals.

With those few words, Mr Speaker, I beg to second.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Livune (Katombola): Mr Speaker, from the outset, I would like to mention that I appreciate the great work done by your Committee and all the hon. Members who submitted to this very important piece of work.

Sir, the issues raised in the report are very salient and should be reflected upon by the powers that be so as to arrest many issues that are of negative consequence to this republic.

Mr Speaker, prudent financial management is key to the successful delivery of public services. Many of the people in this country are highly expectant. 

Sir, I will try, as much as possible, to summarise my input to this good report, which I sincerely support. 

Mr Speaker, Page 2 (iii) of the report states that:

“Specific mention was made of non-preparation of financial statements, failure to remit statutory contributions, poor financial performance and weakness in procurement procedures in the respective organisations.”

Sir, to go further, on Page 80, there is a summary of these inadequacies, as follows:

“(iv)    poor financial performance resulting in the non-declaration of dividends;

(v)    failure to secure title deeds;

(vi)     misapplication of funds;

(vii)    wasteful expenditure;

(viii)     poor recording keeping; and

(ix)    unretired imprest.” 

Mr Speaker, all these are vices. Owing to the failure to comply with these important fundamentals in accounting, I support the call to stiffen the sanctions against it, which will work as deterrents to the controlling officers. Many of those entrusted with the responsibility of executing these financial obligations are Zambia Institute of Chartered Accounts (ZICA) members. They are qualified accountants. Or, are they semi-qualified or deliberately want to bring shame to this country because, throughout this report, there is a lot of money that is  unaccounted for; unretired imprest, among all those other issues that we have gone through? We are not just going to be a talk shop. We must be able to persuade the powers that be to bring these culprits to book.

Sir, on Page 3 of the report, there is a very interesting issue on unretired imprest. On expenditure, I am interested in the duration it takes for an officer to retire imprest. The report mentions forty-eight days …

Hon. Members: Hours!

Mr Livune: It is forty-eight days in this report. If it is forty-eight hours, then, I have no problem, but it if it is the way it is reflected, this is one reason we have a lot of abuse.

Mr Speaker, the people who use imprest must know that the money is not theirs. They must retire within the forty-eight hours, which is agreeable. However, they must do the right thing without being pushed and the controlling officers must punish those who fail to submit as per requirements.

Sir, I will quickly move to a few other issues on specific institutions that have been highlighted in the report. 

Sir, the NSCB is a bank that we created, as Parliament. It is the most stable bank in this country. I hope that most hon. Members are aware that this is the only bank where, if anything went wrong and threatened to cease its existence, the National Assembly would be engaged to talk about it, alerting everyone of its possible collapse. This aspect makes it the safest bank because it is a custodian of our interests.

Mr Speaker, page 29 of this good report says:

“Further, the Government, under the IFAD Programme, had sourced US$1.6 million for rural branch expansion.” 

Sir, this motivates me. I only hope that things will work according to what is said in this document. Rural must really be rural places like Kazungula, where I come from, and Shang’ombo. This is one bank that can be encouraged to go to some of these areas with some amount of motivation from the Government. It is possible to do that. This is the reason we are able to secure these funds on the agreement that our rural communities can be helped in some of these turbulent situations they find themselves in, especially the working populace in the rural areas, as well as the farmers, who may have serious challenges of how to secure their finances.

Mr Speaker, …

Mr Mulusa: On a point of order, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mulusa: Mr Speaker, issues of finance are pertinent to this country. Therefore, is the Leader of Government Business in the House …

The Vice-President walked in.

Mr Mulusa: There he comes, …


Mr Mulusa:… so, I withdraw that. 


Mr Mulusa: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning and his hon. Deputy Minister in order to be absent from the House while this report, which is very pertinent to their ministry, is debated?

I seek your serious ruling, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker: Order! 

Obviously, the Speaker’s preference, on all occasions, is that every hon. Member of the House is available during debate, unless leave has been granted or, indeed, there are other compelling exigencies necessitating their absence. I think that this is a very important report, just like any other report; an issue that is consistently high on our agenda as a nation. So, I expect all the key functionaries on the right to be present when this report is debated. It has important implications on the manner in which we manage our public resources.

May the hon. Member continue.

Mr Livune: Mr Speaker, when we hear of the inadequacies of failing to prepare financial statements at the NSCB, we get very concerned. We must put pressure on them so that they do the right thing. My hope is that we will see the use of this money in most of our rural districts. I know that banks are motivated by profit but, at some point, we must have institutions that can, somewhat, provide a service.

Mr Speaker, the ZPPA is referred to on page 59. There is a concern, which is the failure to convene board meetings. This report mentions the Chairperson’s failure to attend board meetings due to other commitments. Unless something has changed, the ZPPA is a very interesting institution. The question that arises is: Who constitutes the board? You would be surprised that most hon. Ministers are board members. It is a very serious issue, in terms of good governance, and we need to get a reaction from the powers that be. Who is a board chairperson? In these institutions, some failures are as a result of people who are over-committed. 

Sir, the composition of the ZPPA Board even spreads over to other boards in this country. Therefore, it will be appropriate, at some point, to bring a piece of legislation to limit the number of boards of which one can be a member. In this country, the same people sit on various boards countrywide. This is why, sometimes, when you go to any office, you will find the Managing Director chairing a board meeting in Ndola, in the morning. At 1000 hours, he will have a board meeting in Chipata and, on the same day, he would have made K10 million to K12 million from attending board meetings at the expense of Zambians, who require a reasonable service from these institutions. 

Sir, the ZPPA is a very important institution and we only hope that, when these issues are brought to the surface, like the Chairperson of your Committee mentioned, those given these responsibilities will carry them out to the satisfaction of those who are looking forward to a proper service. 

Mr Speaker, another issue of interest is that of the declining membership at the PSPF and LASF, due to the NAPSA Act. This is on page 82 of the report and it has been lamented on the Floor of this House.

Mr Speaker, in the Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and Labour, there are recommendations of some committee that sat to talk about social security. These are the PSPF, LASF and NAPSA, institutions that provide this service. Some of the issues we are talking about are as a result of the NAPSA Act of 1996, which was well-intentioned. However, lacunas arose, which brought about this confusion in the industry. 

Sir, social security is well-intentioned. It is an insurance of the money one receives, on a monthly basis, so as to continue enjoying the social basics of human life. When a salary stops coming, many people degenerate and quickly die because they are used to the better life that a salary affords people. Therefore, the creation of these institutions was well-intentioned. The only problem is that of people given the responsibility to manage them or formulate policies that can harmonise and reduce tension. 

Mr Speaker, for example, when the NAPSA Act was debated, many factors were considered that even touched on the contribution rates. It is also important to remember the history of this country. In this country, after independence, we saw the creation of institutions like the National Provident Fund (NPF), which looked after the interests of the less privileged because the civil servants were looked at as a group that needed to have a public service pension. The other institutions, such as the local authorities, had LASF. All these things are well documented. 

Sir, the NPF was also a creation of Parliament. Due to the failure to meet the benchmarks, the NPF was transformed. When you critically analyse the PSPF and LASF, you will find that these are more of occupational pension schemes because they only exist in a particular sector. If you do not work for a council, you cannot be a member of LASF. If you do not work for the Government, as a civil servant, you cannot be a member of the PSPF. The only one that cut across the board was the NPF, which catered for every worker in the country, including domestic and farm workers. Therefore, there was a need to harmonise this industry, hence the birth of NAPSA. I want to believe that the managements and players at the PSPF and LASF were key; they were part of the people, together with this House, who brought about the existence of NAPSA.

Mr Speaker, in my view, what needed to be done was to review the rates of contributions so that the institutions could continue to exist. For example, at LASF, the contribution rate is 23 per cent while, at NAPSA, it is only 10 per cent. The NAPSA rate was arrived at because of the realisation that, before it was created, some people had complained. Therefore, institutions that were stronger, together with their trade unions, such as the banks, brought about the existence of in-house pension schemes. Due to the decline in membership, we now have this challenge. So, I agree with the Chairperson of your Committee, who is seriously calling on the powers that be to take some action, and the Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and Labour is a serious player in this matter. It must bring out the reports and harmonise the industry. The LASF’s, 23 per cent contribution rate is high. All we can do is to allow members to continue and reduce the rates. We can have all these three because, when you look at them critically, we have the occupational ones and the national one, which cuts across the board. These are our institutions and they can do better if we harmonised the pieces of legislation to remove the quarrelling in this industry. It is true that there is tension over these industries and, worse still, they all came about as a result of Acts of Parliament. So, we are not going to sit idly and watch our industries quarrel over a matter that we can have a solution to. I hope the hon. Minister of Information, Broadcasting and Labour, though not here, will get to hear this message through the hon. Deputy Minister because this is a very important matter. I also want to emphasise that many of us, in this House, deserve much more from our institutions. It must be a requirement that, when the House forms up, after expiry of the other, public institutions like these organise workshops for hon. Members for them to understand what they do in these industries. Many of them exist without us, really, appreciating what they do. So, it will be beneficial for hon. Members to appreciate and ask these parastatal organisations questions on what they do and why they should exist. They must justify their existence.

With those very few words, I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bwalya: Mr Speaker, thank you for giving me this opportunity to support the Motion on the Floor on behalf of the people of Lupososhi Constituency. The issue of finance and national resources is very important. It is even more important for the Zambian people to know how they are utilised.

Mr Speaker, out of the sixteen parastatal bodies that are the subject this report, about 63 per cent failed to prepare financial statements. I also looked at the figures that have been highlighted in this report and found that about K87.9 billion has questions about it. Of this K87.9 billion, K66.5 billion is in the form of statutory deductions that have not been remitted to respective statutory bodies. That represents about 75 per cent of the K87.9 billion and it means that NAPSA and other pension institutions are surviving on monies that are coming from the private sector because the parastatal bodies are not remitting funds. 

Mr Speaker, my other concern is the time it takes for these financial statements and reports to come from the Auditor-General’s Office. Are we within the law to debate outdated statistics, or we simply take note without debate? If we are within the law, then, it appears, maybe, this House may add very little value to these figures. If the latter is true, then, this is very fertile ground for bad governance and I wish to caution my Government so that we can find a way of ensuring that reports of this nature come to the House on time. 

Mr Speaker, I also want to touch on the role of the Accountant-General’s Office. This office requires a lot of support. Its status needs to be raised to that of, maybe, constitutional offices. We have ZICA and I want to believe that the Accountant-General is a member of ZICA. If that is true, it means that the financial statements in the public sector need to be prepared within a specified period. We are debating these issues and flaws when most of the Chief Executives and controlling officers have either left the organisations or, unfortunately, may have died. Most of those who come to answer questions pertaining to the mismanagement of funds are new to their offices and some may not even understand most of the issues.

Mr Speaker, the Secretary to the Treasury was recently appointed. So, the former Secretary should have been the one to answer on some things that may have transpired but, today, we are struggling to answer questions with people who were not there when the offences were committed. 

Mr Speaker, the Accountant-General’s Office, if not strengthened, will not be able to curb this scourge that we have. If there is an institution that has well-staffed internal audit departments, I want to believe, it is the Government. If that is true, they should be able to arrest the unretired imprest within seven days. It appears that we are doing an academic exercise when we have internal auditors in office who do not even find out, when an officer comes back from a trip, whether he/she has retired the imprest within the specified period. In fact, there are assertions that they connive with the culprits.

Mr Speaker, the Public Finance Act needs review. In this House, we have talked about legal reforms that should not only see this country do business cheaply, but also effectively utilise public resources.

Mr Speaker, it is in this regard that the report does well to call for legal reforms and, indeed, the revision of certain policies that do not conform to changing times so that we can have effective utilisation of public resources.

Mr Speaker, it is not unheard of to find an accounts clerk in a Government department buying a house worth KI.2 billion. The question is: Is that commensurate with the salary one gets? So, until we put measures in place to arrest such flaws, the poverty levels in this country will remain the same.

Mr Speaker, internal controls should have certain characteristics. They should be able to prevent, first and foremost, the mischief of people. If they fail to prevent, at least, we expect them to detect the mischief in good time so that corrective measures can be taken. If we are going to take three years, from 2009 to 2012, to debate these reports, that is too long a period to try and correct what has gone wrong. We need to change the way we do things. If we do not, we will not be able to account for monies and the Zambian people will judge us harshly.

Mr Speaker, we have accountants, who must apply the generally accepted accounting principles. If we are in doubt, we can engage ZICA so that we can have a framework within which we can collaborate with them. The institute should be able to get down to those officers who fail to produce financial statements. Furthermore, the terms and conditions of public workers need to stipulate that, if any accountant in the public sector fails to produce financial statements within a specified period of time, he/she must be a dismissed and possibly prosecuted.  

Mr Speaker, with these few words, I thank you. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kalaba (Bahati): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to contribute to this well-articulated report by the Chairperson, Hon. Mwale, and his team. 

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kalaba: Mr Speaker, this report has stimulated thought in me. I have been wondering how and why a party that was in power for over twenty years …

Hon. MMD Members: Aah!

Mr Kalaba: … could easily have lost it grip and power to the Opposition, which is unprecedented in the Sub-region. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kalaba: Mr Speaker, today, my thoughts have been cleared by this report. The answer lies in it. 

This report (lifting the document) reveals many glaring irregularities. One can hardly imagine how these things could have gone on without those who were entrusted with the responsibility of preventing or just knowing what was happening could have failed to do so. 

Surely, Mr Speaker, …

Mr Muntanga interjected. 


Mr Kalaba: Yes. In fact, I am anxiously waiting for the Treasury minutes, sixty days after this report is presented to the Executive. I would love to read the report that will come from there. 

Sir, the CEEC lost K13,188,857,527, as monies misapplied. These were monies that were used for operations, instead of the intended purpose, which was to benefit the citizens of this country. Governments all over the world try, as much as possible, to empower their citizens. However, at the end of the day, it is the monitoring that matters. You can buy a car, but the question is: Will you maintain it? 

Mr Speaker, this report we are looking at is for 2009. These things were happening at the time when those who wanted to be re-elected were in charge. I must say that this is probably why, as Chinua Achebe wrote in his book, Things Fall Apart, they are where they are, today, and deservedly so. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kalaba: Mr Speaker, we need to take issues of national governance seriously. We need to look through things and manage the process. This is where we go wrong, especially when people who are entrusted with the responsibility to manage things fail to do so properly. This amount, which is close to K14 billion, could have really helped the people to better their lives, but it went to operations and, if you scratch further to find out what sort of operations these were, you will find that it was things like seminars, workshops, trips and, probably, some underground banking. 

Sir, this is where we miss it, as a country and this is where we need to be in charge as the PF, today. This is because the same people who were dealing with these operations in 2009 are still there. We might have changed the pots, but the relish is the same.

Mr Muntanga: But you were there!

Mr Kalaba: We need to deal with these issues aggressively.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kalaba: On page 10 of Hon. V. Mwale’s report, K99 million was misapplied at the Chipata School of Nursing because the person who was employed was not qualified to handle finances. Who employed those people? It is our colleagues on your left, Mr Speaker.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kalaba: This is a very sad report; that a person who was not qualified was entrusted with the responsibility of handling colossal amounts of money; to the tune of almost K100 million, lost and you were busy saying you wanted to be re-elected. The people said, no, kuya bebele …

Hon. Opposition Members: Meaning?

Mr Kalaba: Meaning it is time to go, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker: Order!

May the hon. Member, please, use the official language and bear in mind that we are debating the Auditor-General’s Report in relation to the parastatal bodies. I do not want to restrict your mode of debate, but bear that in mind nonetheless.

Mr Kalaba: Much obliged, Mr Speaker.

Sir, all this money went unnoticed because of lack of supervision.

With regard to ZAMCOM, there is a case of a director procuring a bus without other members of staff and the board being involved. This is on page 56 of your Committee’s report. 

Sir, these are glaring irregularities that need remedial measures. It is important that issues like these are dealt with conclusively, so that others may learn that it is not worth it to abuse or misapply public resources. There have to be consequences.

Sir, at the ZPPA, there was the issue of failure to prepare bank reconciliations. On page 62 of your report, your Committee expressed displeasure over the casual manner in which the ZPPA dealt with these issues. Now, if the ZPPA, which is charged with the responsibility of dealing with this country’s procurements, can behave in such a manner – and I have not come across evidence, in this report, to suggest that remedial measures have been taken – then we know that there is a problem. 

Sir, I know that, we will have an opportunity to discuss some of these issues in detail in this House. So, I would just like to submit that this country can only be good if it is good for all of us. Those of us who are entrusted with the responsibility by the public to administer the affairs of this country on their behalf need to be cautious …

Mr Muntanga: Yes. Correct! Tell them!

Mr Speaker: Order!


Mr Kalaba: Thank you Sir. We need to be cautious because posterity will judge us harshly.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kalaba: I mentioned, in my last debate, on the Floor of this House, that we are elected to serve, not be served. The tendency, especially in the past, was one of wanting to be served. Now, that is where things went wrong.

Mr Speaker, in my language, there is a saying that, “Inkongole sha cipuba ninshiku shipinda”, meaning, if you borrow money from someone who is mentally deranged, it is only days that will be asking for that money to be repaid.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mulusa: Mr Speaker, from the outset, I wish to state that the challenges highlighted in this report are profound and I can see their systematic recurrence because the recommendations will not be very helpful. I wish that the Committee could have done more in that regard.

Sir, when you read this report, you will find that everything points to one thing, weaknesses in the Finance Management Act. We are going to see incidences of abuse of public resources from one government to the other. Even this Government will give us similar incidences because we are not providing a holistic approach to realign the paradigm in which we operate.

Sir, the Finance Management Act needs to be strengthened to have appropriate provisions. We do not even need to enact the State Enterprise Act and policy guidelines. We only need a provision and what must operationalise the Finance Management Act are Treasury regulations, which should stipulate how State-owned entities are managed. If a State-owned entity is required to provide draft financials thirty days, …

Mr Chikwanda: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, this point of order is raised just to help the hon. Member for Solwezi Central, who is a very able debater. The Act is referred to as the Public Finance Act. In the past, it used to be the Public Finance Management Act. Is he in order to continue misdirecting himself?

Mr Speaker: I think that the hon. Member is making a point about being factually correct in our debates and I think the reminder about the appropriate nomenclature of the Act is properly placed. I am sure you will take that into account as you debate further.

Mr Mulusa: Mr Speaker, I think that I was running ahead of myself and talking about the ideal situation that I would like to see. In fact, I must state that the Public Finance Act, when it is amended and improved upon, must be called the Public Finance Management Act so that it includes all the provisions that will assist us manage our State institutions properly.

Sir, I was talking about Treasury regulations that would operationalise the Act by providing guidelines on how management in these entities conduct themselves. From there, there would be offshoots of best practice guidelines that would be issued by the Office of the Accountant General.

Mr Speaker, one of the provisions would be to guide our State-owned entities that lend out money that, for instance, you cannot lend more than 10 per cent of your capital to a single borrower. This way, we are not going to have problems where so much money has been given out to individuals.

Sir, with those few words, and the caution that we need to review our Public Finance Act, I do not support the report.

I thank you, Sir.

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, I want to support this report of your Committee with very few comments that I want to make, arising from the observations made on the few statutory bodies that have been audited. 

Sir, there is nothing new, here. It is the same old story.


The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.


The House adjourned at 1915 hours until 1430hours on Thursday, 28th June, 2012.