Debates- Friday, 2nd March, 2012

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Friday, 2nd March, 2012

The House met at 0900 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]





Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, I wish to inform the House that the National Assembly of Zambia will, on Thursday, 8th March, 2012, join the rest of the country and the international community in commemorating the International Women’s Day.

The national theme for 2012 is “Connecting Girls, Inspiring Futures: Mentorship for Success”.

As this event will be commemorated at the national level, selected hon. Members of Parliament will take part in a march past on Thursday, 8th March, 2012 to commemorate the International Women’s Day.

The National Assembly of Zambia will also hold a sensitisation meeting for hon. Members of Parliament and staff of the National Assembly on Tuesday, 6th March, 2012.

All hon. Members of Parliament are invited to attend this important sensitisation meeting and should be seated in the auditorium by 0900 hours.


Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, I have three rulings to render this morning. Hon. Members will recall that yesterday, 1st March, 2012, when the House was considering Question for Oral Answer No. 147 on the Order Paper, and Hon. M. Lubezhi, MP, was asking a supplementary Question, the hon. Member of Parliament for Bahati, Mr H. Kalaba, MP, raised the following point of order:

    “Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me this chance to raise this very substantive point of order bordering on the sovereignty and integrity of this country. In today’s Daily Mail, Mr George Kunda, the former Vice-President, has alleged that during the recent visit of the United Nations Secretary-General to this Country, Mr Kunda had complained to the UN Chief saying that the PF Government is actually persecuting the former MMD leaders. Mr Kunda, on Page 2 of today’s Daily Mail headlined “MMD Complains to UN over Persecution of its Leaders”, and I will quote the article:

‘Mr Kunda told journalists that the MMD leaders explained the human rights situation in the country to Mr Ban Ki-Moon. He said the MMD told Mr Moon how former ministers and ruling party leaders have been subjected to alleged illegal searches and abuse by the police service. There has been brutalisation of our membership after the 20th September elections. There has also been destruction of property and this kind of retribution and vengeance is not good for the country.’

“Mr Speaker, my point of order is that, is Hon. Kunda in order to ignore the fact that the PF Government is simply following the rule of law and implementing it? This is because when you look at the issues that most of them are being investigated on, including the dubious sale of the Zambia Telecommunications (ZAMTEL) Hon. Siliya was never in order. 

“Mr Speaker, the dubious sale of ZAMTEL is under investigation now. There is the burying of money underground which is under investigation at the moment. There is also the issue of bicycles which is currently under investigation. All these are issues that this competent Government is investigating. 

“Is Mr Kunda, therefore, in order to dent Zambia’s integrity and sovereignty by alleging that this Government is abusing its citizens by misleading Mr Moon? Is he in order to mislead the UN Chief in such a manner? I need your serious ruling on this matter.”

Hon. Members, as you will recall, in my immediate reaction, I stated as follows:

    “I will similarly reserve the ruling.”

Hon. Members, I have since studied the point of order and wish to make the following ruling:

Hon. Members, the point of order by the hon. Member of Bahati raises the issue of whether the MMD misled the UN Chief during the meeting, and thus dented Zambia’s integrity and sovereignty by alleging that this Government is abusing its citizens by persecuting former leaders. 

It is clear that the matters raised in this point of order were discussed outside the House. Unfortunately, the Chair is not privy to the contents of whatever was discussed during the meeting referred to in the article. As such, the Chair is not in a position to determine whether whatever was discussed impacts negatively, or otherwise, on the integrity or procedures of the House or whether the sovereignty of the nation has been compromised by the utterances made by the MMD in their meeting. 

In conclusion, let me encourage all of you to study and familiarise yourselves with the provisions of the Standing Orders of the House, the National Assembly Powers and Privileges Act and the Members’ Handbook on how to raise points of order in the House and on the procedures of the House in general.

Hon. Members are further reminded to acquaint themselves with the circular dated 27th October, 2011 relating to how and when to raise points of order which was distributed in the October/December 2011 meeting of the House.

I thank you.


Mr Speaker: Hon. Members will recall that yesterday, Thursday, 1st March, 2012, when Mr V. Mooya, MP, was asking a supplementary question on a ministerial statement delivered by Hon. Dr. J. T. N. Phiri, MP, Minister of Education, Science and Vocational Training, on the current status of the University of Zambia, the hon. Member of Parliament for Senanga, Mr L. Mufalali, MP, raised the following point of order:

“Mr Speaker, I rise on a point of order that borders on constitutional matters and on Government. Is it in order for the Government to allow the publishing of articles that border on ethnicity, cleansing, inciting and segregation? I have with me a copy of the Daily Mail dated 1st March, 2012. The heading of the article reads:

        ‘Questioning the authenticity of Barotseland Agreement’.

“Mr Speaker, in this article, the writer has depicted the Lozi people as ignorant and imperialists. I wish to quote paragraph sixteen which says:

‘I am certain that two things are likely to happen as a result of this article. First, it would solidify the Government position against the Lozi traditionalists and then, in the second place, it would make the PF Government to only watch over the fence the tribal political arena because it is the Lozi imperialism that has brought the rise of Nkoya and Lamba nationalism.’

“Mr Speaker, there are several quotations in this article that tend to incite other tribes against the Lozis. 

“Mr Speaker, is it in order for this Government to continue allowing the publication of articles such as this one that seem to be bordering on ensuring that certain tribes are segregated on account of ethnicity? As if this were not enough, I wish to quote the Secretary-General of the Patriotic Front, Mr Kabimba, in his address to the nation on television and radio, where his remarks bordered on ethnicity by saying that:

‘… if one knew the demographic and ethnic structure of the Western Province, one would not arrive at the conclusion. We do not want to say that, in fact, the Lozis are a minority against a number of tribes which he named. I will lay the paper on the Table’.”

Hon. Members, in my immediate remarks, I stated as follows: 

“The ruling of the Chair is that he has to peruse the article in question to make an appropriate ruling.”

Hon. Members, I have since perused the said article and wish to rule as follows:

The point of order raised by the hon. Member for Senanga alleges that the Government is encouraging ethnicity and, in particular, promoting contempt against the Lozi people by allowing the publication of articles such as the one which is a subject of a point of order. 

The article, which is the subject of the point of order, relates to the Barotseland Agreement of 1964. This matter is not before the House, but rather in the public domain where it is being discussed at various fora. As I ruled earlier, the Report of the Commission of Inquiry, which has recommendations relating to the Barotseland Agreement, is being considered by the Government. Once Cabinet has made a decision on the way forward regarding the recommendations contained in the report, the Government will make a decision in the public domain for debate. The deliberations of this matter are, thus, being conducted outside the House albeit prematurely. As such, this matter falls outside the jurisdiction of this House. 

The House is also constrained to make a pronouncement that the Government is promoting ethnicity and discrimination against certain tribes contrary to the Constitution by allowing such articles to be published in the Government-controlled newspapers. This is so because the House has no basis to make such a conclusion, bearing in mind that the public media enjoy editorial independence regarding articles they publish. However, anyone aggrieved by any such publication has a right to seek redress from the Judicial Branch of Government regarding the alleged offensive materials.

I thank you.

Mr Speaker stood up

Mr Speaker: I will now make my last ruling. I am trying to avoid a culture of indolence. 


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Speaker: Hon. Members will recall that yesterday, on Thursday, 1st March, 2012, when the House was considering Question for Oral Answer No. 147 and Mr C. Kakoma, hon. Member of Parliament for Zambezi West, was asking a Supplementary Question, the hon. Member of Parliament for Mazabuka Central, Mr Nkombo, raised a point of order on whether the hon. Minister of Home Affairs and the Government were in order to use the police to deny citizens their fundamental rights.

To support and explain this point of order, Hon. Nkombo quoted extensively from the resolutions of the chiefs in the Southern Province which were made on 10th February, 2012. He also quoted the letter notifying the police of the peaceful demonstration dated 21st February, 2012, and the response from the police dated 23rd February 2012, as well as the consequent response from persons who had notified the police of their intention to undertake a peaceful demonstration.

Hon. Members, the point of order raises the issue of the alleged breach of fundamental rights and freedoms of the citizens of the Republic of Zambia. Upon studying the point of order and perusing all the supporting documents in this matter, I have found that Article 21 of the Constitution of Zambia provides for freedom of assembly and association. 

Further, Section 5 (4) and 6 of the Public Order Act provides for the notification of the police and Article 28 of the Constitution provides for the enforcement of fundamental rights and freedoms. I have quoted Article 21 and, for brevity’s sake, I will not recite it because it is familiar. I am stating that the freedom of assembly is one of our precious fundamental rights. Everyone is entitled to meet and assemble with fellow citizens to discuss their affairs and to promote their views as along as this is not done to propagate violence or do anything unlawful. 

Hon. Members, in order to further expound both the rights of expression and assembly, I cannot do better than to adopt the words of Justice Brandeis when, in the celebrated case of Whitney Vs California, observed as follows:
“… Those who won our Independence believe that the final end of the state was to make men free, to develop their faculties; that, in its Government, the deliberative forces should prevail over the arbitrary. They valued liberty, both as an end and as a means; they believed liberty to be the secret of happiness and courage to be the secret of liberty. They believed that freedom to think as you will and speak as you think are a means to the discovery and spread of political truth; that without free speech and assembly, discussion would be futile; that, with them, discussion affords ordinarily adequate protection against dissemination of noxious doctrine; that the greatest menace to freedom is an inert people; that public discussion is a political duty; and that this should be a fundamental principle of the American Governments ...”

Hon. Members, this is a counsel that has come to be known as a safety valve augment. It is broadly utilitarian. It is in the public interest to tolerate the exercise of the rights to free speech and assembly in order to appreciate the depth of popular feeling and, also, to defuse the dangers of public disorder. I have quoted section 5(4) and (6) of the Public Order Act, Chapter 113 of the Laws of Zambia which states: 

“Every person who intends to assemble or convene a public meeting, procession or demonstration shall give the police, at least, seven days’ notice of that person’s intention to assemble or convene such a meeting, procession or demonstration. Where it is not possible for the police to adequately police any particular public meeting, procession or demonstration, the regulating officer of the area shall, at least, five days before the date of the public meeting, procession or demonstration, in writing, give reasons for the inability of the police to police the public meeting, procession or demonstration and shall propose an alternative date and time for the holding of such meeting, procession or demonstration.”

Hon. Members, the net effect of the provisions referred to above is that the requirement of obtaining a permit was by the Public Order Act, No. 1 of 1996 substituted by a duty to notify the police. The police have to be notified in order to enable them regulate public meetings, processions and demonstrations. The requirement of notification is, strictly speaking, meant for the preservation of public peace and order. However, if any person opposes or disobeys any directive issued pursuant to Section 5 referred to above, he shall be guilty of the offence of taking part in an unlawful assembly. The sanction for holding an unlawful assembly, under the penal code, is imprisonment for a period of five years. 

Furthermore, Article 28 (1) of the Constitution provides as follows: 

“That, subject to Clause 5, if any person alleges that any of the provisions of Article 11 to 26 inclusive has been, is being or is likely to be contravened, then, without prejudice to any other action with respect to the same, which is lawfully available, that person may apply for redress to the High Court.”

In view of the foregoing legal provisions, it is clear that, where any person is aggrieved on issues relating to the enjoyment of the fundamental rights and freedoms, the appropriate recourse is to the High Court of Zambia as provided under Article 28 of the Constitution. Therefore, the Legislature is not a suitable branch of Government to adjudicate upon and make pronouncements on the sundry and specific issues brought to my attention by the hon. Member for Mazabuka Central in his very detailed point of order.

Thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!



The Vice-President (Dr Scott): Mr Speaker, I rise to give the House some idea of the Business it will consider next week.

Sir, on Tuesday, 6th March, 2012, the Business of the House will begin with Questions, if there will be any. This will be followed by Presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. Thereafter, the House will consider the Report of the Parliamentary Select Committee appointed to scrutinise the Presidential appointment of Mr Evans C. Chibiliti as Secretary to the Cabinet. 

Sir, on Wednesday, 7th March, 2012, the Business of the House will begin with Questions, if there will be any. This will be followed by Presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. Thereafter, the House will consider a Private Member’s Motion entitled, “Develop Broadly Share Economic and Human Development Strategy” to be moved by the hon. Member of Parliament for Solwezi Central Parliamentary Constituency.

Mr Speaker, on Friday, 9th March, 2012, the Business of the House will commence with the Vice-President’s Question Time. This will be followed by Questions, if there will be any. The House will then deal with Presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. After that, the House will consider the Report of the Parliamentary Select Committee appointed to scrutinise the Presidential appointments of Pastor Godfridah Sumaili and Dr Steven P. C. Moyo as commissioners of the Anti-Corruption Commission. Thereafter, the House will consider any Business that might remain outstanding.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.



Mr Mutati (Lunte): Mr Speaker, the frequency of industrial unrests, which impacts negatively on productivity and production, is alarming. These unrests are a significant cost to this economy. Yesterday, we heard from the hon. Minister of Lands Energy and Water Development that the instability of the exchange rate is further imposing a cost on this economy. Can His Honour the Vice-President state the measures that his Government is taking to curb these unrests? 

The Vice-President (Dr Scott): Mr Speaker, I heard, at least, two questions there. Does the hon. Member want me to respond to the question about industrial unrests or the exchange rate? I think that some discipline needs to be observed by our friends across with regard to questions. 

Mr Speaker, I think that the demands by the workers and their determination to stick by them, is largely a natural consequence of what they feel is a sort of liberation that has occurred since the PF took over Government from the MMD. If those of us who are old enough can recall, industrial unrest that is a tendency towards strikes, came on after 1964 and in 1991, when the genuine MMD came into power.  

Mr Speaker, our approach to curbing this is to retain our neutral stance. The Government does not want to involve itself in these industrial disputes. However, for instance, this afternoon, I will be chairing a meeting between various players in the First Quantum Mine at Kansanshi with the intention of encouraging and persuading them to reach an agreement and return to work. This is really our balanced position. I think that the previous Government had a tendency to sit in the pocket of the employers too much. This is why the workers, accordingly, feel that they are now entitled to play catch up with some of the time that has been missed.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: I do not wish to enter into a low-down argument about this. This is my honest opinion of what is happening. Most of the mines are operating. The unrest is prominent but, nonetheless, confined to a small percentage of the mining and other industries. 

Mr Speaker, I do not think that a movement of the exchange rate of a small percentage, especially when one is attempting to bring down the local interest rate, is an issue I will address. The previous Government kept the exchange rate stable by preventing local investors from accessing finance. 

Hon. MMD Members: Aah!

The Vice-President: Yes. 

Mr Speaker, even today, the effective real interest rate on an overdraft is 25 per cent. You cannot expect local agriculture or industry to thrive …


Mr Speaker: Order!

The Vice-President: … where the local interest rate is in the region of 25 per cent. 

Of course the reason the local interest rates, driven by bond rates, were kept so high was to encourage the so-called carry traders, people who move their currencies around by borrowing money in Japan at 1 per cent and moving it into Zambia at 25 per cent to encourage people to keep their money here. This kept the exchange rate up. The problem is that it also created the unemployment that had them kicked out of power. Consequently, we are now struggling to regain a balance between interest rates and exchange rates and, generally, run this country in a professional and nationalistic fashion. We want to see Zambians investing not just foreigners. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order!

Hon. Members are urged to ask only one question. Each hon. Member is entitled to one question. For those who transgress this rule, I will invite His Honour the Vice-President to ignore subsequent questions other than the one question that is restricted to each hon. Member. 

Mr Kapeya (Mpika Central): Mr Speaker, can His Honour the Vice-President comment on the allegations by the MMD top leadership that the public media in Zambia has been turned into a PF mouthpiece. 

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, the public media is learning. I have certainly read some stories in the Government newspapers and heard some stories on the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) television and radio, which I have not liked, from a political point of view. I think that they are gaining confidence and, certainly, there is no doubt that we are encouraging them. We want to see an independent press and we are not going to come down like a ton of bricks on anyone who transgresses against singing praises of the PF. We are trying our best to engender an atmosphere of a free press even so far as the public media is concerned. This is my answer.  

Mr Speaker, I thank you. 

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, yesterday, I had one of those rare misfortunes of watching the ZNBC news. This particular time, there was a caption depicting demonstrations of our hardworking Ministry of Health workers on the Copperbelt, demanding the payment of the promised 100 per cent salary increment. This same story has been carried by the Daily Mail of today, 2 March, 2012. 

Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from His Honour the Vice-President whether the Government has reneged on its promise to increase the health workers’ salaries by 100 per cent. What is the actual position? 

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, the actual position is that the Public Service Terms and Conditions Agreement for this year runs out at the end of this month, if I am not mistaken, with the new one due to come in. The various preparatory policy documents are already in the pipeline and Cabinet will consider its position, the negotiations will take place and due attention will be paid to any promises that would have been made. We shall have a new Civil Service across-the-board pay plan, hopefully, by the end of this month. If not this month, then, certainly, by the end of next month. 

I thank you, Sir.  

Mr Pande (Kasempa): Mr Speaker, the PF Government seems to be a listening Government, particularly President Michael Sata, going by the decisions that he has made and rescinded. I take it that it is by advice. 

Mr Speaker, His Honour the Vice-President is the President’s number one adviser. When will he advise the President to rescind his decision of re-aligning Chirundu and Itezhi-tezhi so that we loosen the tension in the Southern Province? 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, when I advise the President and what I advise him on is privileged information, I regret. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from His Honour the Vice President, Guy Lindsey Scott, when his Government is going to address the issue of casualisation of labour both in Government as well as in private businesses to reduce on the labour and industrial unrest that we have been seeing in this country? I will give an example in order to assist His Honour the Vice-President to understand my question. Yesterday, the hon. Deputy Minister of Information, Broadcasting and Labour and I went to Mazabuka where Zambia Sugar arbitrarily fired 168 employees as a result of a very simple misunderstanding that arose from their error as an employer.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I am aware that the matter is receiving some detailed attention and will come before Cabinet shortly. We will advise this House regarding the issue in accordance with the normal procedures. I know people get disappointed when they hear us keep saying, “It is in the pipeline, it is in the pipeline.” However, at an early stage in any Government’s life, things have to get into the pipeline before they can come out into the light of day. Thus, I can merely give Hon. Nkombo the assurance that efforts to address the situation are in the pipeline. It is under active consideration. Let us put it that way.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Livune (Katombola): Mr Speaker, when members of the PF Government were campaigning, they observed that the firearms in the barracks were lying idly and collecting dust. As such, they promised that once in power, they would organise some friendly wars.

Hon. Government Members: No!

Mr Livune: I want to get an update from the Vice-President as regards how far the Government has gone in that endevour?


Ms Siliya: Petauke!


The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I know that my predecessor is on record as having labelled me a fake Vice-President. Fake or not, I cannot answer such a question which is based on fantasy and has no relationship to any truth that I am aware of.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muteteka (Chisamba): Thank you, …

Hon. Government Members: MMD President! Boma!


Mr Muteteka: … Mr Speaker, when the MMD was in power, it had developed a national development plan which outlined the programmes which were to be implemented. The effectiveness of the Government was judged by how well it implemented the plan. We, in the MMD, left power when we had just completed the Sixth National Development Plan (SNDP). May I find out from His Honour the Vice-President if the PF Government has a plan in place to run the affairs of this country or it is using the plan which the MMD left in office.


The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, Hon. Muteteka is fully aware that new plans take quite a while to prepare. We are using the MMD’s plan, so far as it is consistent with our beliefs and elements of our manifesto. Where we are not able to use it as it is, we have to improvise. That is the situation as it is.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya (Petauke): Mr Speaker, in his earlier answer, His Honour the Vice-President mentioned the fact that we are seeing a lot of social unrest because of the new liberty that the workers have found since the PF took over power. Does that answer also not imply that the new liberty by the PF Government now is to mismanage the economy in terms of investor confidence as well as the value of the kwacha?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, under the MMD Government, which was in power for twenty years, and of which I was a part right at the beginning, …

Hon. Opposition Member: Yes, that is right!

The Vice-President: … the kwacha moved from K50 to a dollar to nearly K5,000 then back to K3,000 and then again back to K5,000. Thus, what the hon. Member is talking about is difficult for me to understand. She has also violated your rule of raising only one question at a time. She also incorrectly referred to industrial unrest as social unrest. I do not agree that there are high levels of industrial unrest. Actually, I just acknowledged that there is some prominent industrial unrest which we are dealing with in an appropriate and responsible way. If she wants to have a long technical argument about the exchange rate and interest rate policy, then I would suggest that we have it outside over a cup of coffee.

I thank you, Sir.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: By the way, His Honour the Vice-President is at liberty to ignore supplementary questions.

Mr Miyutu (Kalabo Central): Mr Speaker, the people of Kalabo District have never enjoyed the services of the mobile hospitals ever since they were launched in this country.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: What plans does the Government have in place for Kalabo? When will Kalabo ever enjoy the services of the mobile hospitals?

Mr Kambwili: George Kunda, answer!

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I am sure that if the hon. Member was to consult the Parliament website and look at the verbatim records, he would find that the hon. Minister of Health answered that question very comprehensively in the last sitting. However, I will quickly recap what he said. We do not want to run an independent alternative medical system in the form of mobile hospitals. We want to integrate them into the static medical system. For example, we want to use such equipment for specialised treatment so that it can complement what we already have rather than provide it as some kind of strange alternative to the general static medical system. This alternative would require women to time their pregnancies so that they only deliver when the mobile hospital is in their village. 


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr L. J. Ngoma (Sinda): Mr Speaker, may I get a clear-cut answer from His Honour the Vice-President as regards what will be happening when there is a conflict between the PF Manifesto and Government policy documents such as the SNDP and the Vision 2030. Which document will be reigning supreme? 

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, the PF Manifesto is a document which declares what we believe in what we intend to do. Of course, like anything else in this life, it may contain mistakes which are subject to correction. All the senior Government officials have been given a copy of the PF Manifesto so that they can acquaint themselves with what we think and where our priorities lie. 
I thank you, Sir.

Ms Namugala (Mafinga): Mr Speaker, good governance is a consultative process. In this vein, I would like to find out from His Honour the Vice-President whether consultations were made before the realignment of districts in the Southern Province. If not, what was the basis?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Namugala: If the consultations were made, Sir, why is there so much discontent in the Southern Province?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Speaker: Question posed and answer awaited.


The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I am afraid what went on inside the closed walls of Government before making a decision is privileged information. I cannot simply stand here and release it. I would like to plead for your support on that matter of law and principle. 

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}


Hon. Opposition Member: No, no!

Ms Sayifwanda (Zambezi East): Thank you, Mr Speaker, …

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, on a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, is His Honour the Vice-President in order to say that information that relates to the Government and is supposed to be given to this House is privileged information when, under Article 54 of the Constitution of Zambia, Cabinet is collectively responsible to this House? The Executive cannot be hiding behind the excuse of Government information being privileged when delivering statements to this House.

Mr Kambwili: So, we should tell you what we discuss in Cabinet? Walifulungana, iwe.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, how can he say that I am mad?

Mr Muntanga: He must be punished.

Mr Speaker: Hon. Member, please take your seat.

Let me provide general guidance to the House. It is important that when an hon. Member is on the Floor, we respect his/her freedom of expression. I have just been stating in one of the rulings earlier that this is a fundamental right and it is central to the Business of the House. Therefore, I think it is important that we conduct ourselves with utmost dignity. Needless to state, we have all been bestowed with the title of ‘honourable’. Therefore, we must match it with our conduct.

A point of order was raised but, perhaps, for clarity’s sake, I would like the hon. Member for Monze Central to restate it while the rest of the House remains in silence.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, in answering the question by the hon. Member for Mafinga, His Honour the Vice-President said that he could not disclose the information because it is privileged. I raised a point of order pursuant to Article 54 of the Constitution of Zambia which states that Cabinet is collectively responsible to this House in the way it runs the affairs of this country. Is His Honour the Vice-President in order to start claiming that information is privileged when hon. Members of Parliament pose questions to the Executive?

Mr Speaker: I think, for clarity’s sake, it is important that the question that was raised by the hon. Member for Mafinga is specifically responded to. I think this will help us to avoid some confusion. Again, without stepping into the arena of the debate, I will request the hon. Member for Mafinga to briefly restate the question.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear! Long live Chair!

Ms Namugala: Mr Speaker, good governance is a consultative process. With this in mind, I would like to find out from His Honour the Vice-President whether or not consultations were made with stakeholders in the Southern Province before the realignment of Chirundu and Itezhi-tezhi. If not, what was the basis for the realignment?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I am not in the magical position of living in the President’s pocket such that I can know everybody who he meets and consults.


The Vice-President: He spoke to me about the issue up to a certain point. On the other hand, the basis of the realignment, as I understand it, which is the second half or second question by the hon. Member, is that administrative convenience dictates that these two districts are better off where the President has placed them.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Ms Sayifwanda: Mr Speaker, I thought you were going to forget about me completely. I would like to find out from His Honour the Vice-President whether the trip by the Secretary General of the United Nations (UN) was by invitation from the Zambian Government or it was just a  mere visit. If it was by invitation, what were the issues that the Government wanted to bring to the attention of the UN Secretariat?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I am quite sure that the visit of Mr Ban - he is not Mr Moon, but Mr Ban, was …


The Vice-President: - in the Orient, the surname is put first and the first name last.

Mr Speaker: Address the Chair.


The Vice-President: Sorry, Mr Speaker. I am sure the visit was arrived at in consultation with the UN after the Government was told that Mr Ban Ki-moon wished to travel to Africa. He did not just travel to Zambia. We were asked if he could include Zambia in his itinerary and, of course, we said he was welcome to come to Zambia and he came. 

Whether there were specific issues that we wanted to discuss with him or not is neither here nor there. It was partly ceremonial and partly a goodwill mission. The UN Secretary General usually undertakes such visits continuously across the world. He is virtually an astronaut in terms of the number of times he has circled or navigated the globe.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Miyanda (Mapatizya): Mr Speaker, following the outbreak of lumpy skin disease in the Southern Province and I think in Zambia in general, I want to find out from His Honour the Vice-President what measure the Government is putting in place to control the disease which, so far, has killed many animals in the Southern Province. 

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I have said before that a specific technical question such as this one can receive a much more valuable answer if the hon. Member informally asked it to me before hand so that I can check with the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Livestock. At the moment, he is too far away for me to be very sure what his answer is. His grasp of American sign language is not very good.


The Vice-President: He is trying to indicate to me a ‘V’. I think he means the animals are being vaccinated at the moment.


The Vice-President: If not, he means they will be vaccinated very soon because he is pointing at his watch. (The Vice-President slapped his wrist with two fingers).

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Speaker: I will allow the Vice-President to consult the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Livestock and come back to that question in due course.

Mr Chisanga (Mkushi South): Mr Speaker, may His Honour the Vice-President give us the time frame within which the former district commissioners (DCs) will be paid their dues.

Mr Speaker: Hon. Member for Mkushi South, the last part of your question was not clear.

Mr Chisanga: Mr Speaker, when will the former DCs be paid their gratuity?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I think my earlier advice still stands. I can consult the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning and would have consulted him earlier, had the hon. Member indicated to me even with a note that he wanted to ask that question.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Namulambe (Mpongwe): Mr Speaker, following the question by the hon. Member of Parliament for Mafinga, the Vice-President said that he does not live in the pocket of the President. Is this the reason he is not left to act as President each time the President goes out of the country?


The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, in 1996, the then Government of Mr Fredrick Chiluba brought an amendment to the Constitution to this House which, I think, most legal people agree was discriminatory. However, it was passed because he had the vast majority of the hon. Members in this House at his finger tips, so to speak. 


The Vice-President: This amendment specifically prevents people like me and many other hon. Members of this House from standing for presidency. There are many people, for instance, whose father comes from Kalabo while the mother comes from the Caprivi Strip and such similar things, who are not allowed, under this constitutional amendment, to stand as candidates for the presidency.

The question of whether this particular clause or article goes downstream and prevents somebody from acting as a President during the absence of the substantive President is, and I know, slightly controversial. I was hoping that the former Vice-President was going to take us to court on this issue so that we could clarify the matter. However, he prefers just to stand behind a tree and throw rocks. 


The Vice-President: He prefers to politick than to go to court because, I think, he knows that if he goes to court, there is a very good chance, a zaluza … Sorry, he will lose …


The Vice-President: … and he will be lumped with a large bill which may be difficult for him to offset. So, the question has been left in a balance. There is plenty of precedence for someone other than the Vice-President being asked to act as President in the President’s absence. I believe it happened in all the previous presidencies. In my view, it is not a big deal. Besides, I do not think that this House is a court of law that can resolve this matter anyway.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Speaker: His Honour the Vice-President, could you, please, respond to the question by the hon. Member for Mapatizya.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, we are currently vaccinating animals. However, under the current arrangements, the farmers have to buy the lumpy skin vaccine which is always a problem. I think we must take it up because it is very expensive.

Lumpy skin is not one of the diseases of very great economic importance on a level with Foot and Mouth Disease or Contagious Bovine Pleuro Pneumonia for which the Government provides the vaccines free of charge. Therefore, it is a question which I will take up and, at some future point, we will inform the House on what we are doing about the lumpy skin disease.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Lubezhi (Namwala): Mr Speaker, under the Patriotic Front’s (PF) policies of good governance, the Secretary to the Treasury, today, said that the Public Service will only be given 4 per cent salary increment while, on the other hand, it is being said that the health workers will be given a 100 per cent increment. Why is there so much inconsistency in this Government?

The Vice-President: During negotiations, people have different pictures of where they are going to end up. There are different demands and suggestions. That is how you arrive at some sort of compromise in the end. I do not think somebody saying one thing and somebody else saying another means anything before the negotiations are complete.

I thank you, Sir.

Mrs Masebo (Chongwe): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the Vice-President whether the on-going negotiations are taking into account the recommendations of the Salaries Commission.

The Vice-President: Yes, is the answer.

Thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!




153. Mr Mwanza (Solwezi West) asked the Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication:

(a)    when the Kisasa/Wamafwa/Ifumba Road in Senior Chief Musole’s area was last graded and, at what cost;

(b)    when the road would be re-graded; and

(c)    under what category the road fell.

The Deputy Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication (Dr Mwali): Mr Speaker, the road was last worked on in 2009 by the Rural Roads Unit (RRU) at a total cost of K68.4 million. 

The roads worked on by the RRU are those provided by the district councils. The Solwezi District Council needs to prioritise this road for our unit to work on it.

This road is designated as R185. It is a rural road under the jurisdiction of the Solwezi District Council, as provided for by the Public Roads Act No. 12 of 2002. This Act states that the appointed local road authority shall provide for the construction, care and maintenance of roads under its jurisdiction. Our ministry provides the technical expertise in the maintenance, care and construction once these roads are prioritised by the local authorities.

I thank you, Sir.


154. Mr Chisala (Chilubi) asked the Vice-President:

(a)    why the Government shifted the boundary between Luwingu and Chilubi districts, which was originally designed and agreed upon by all stakeholders prior to the granting of Chilubi district status in 1979; and

(b)    why part of the population enumerated in Bumba Ward in Sub-Chief Mwapekalunga’s area in Chilubi District was recorded as residing in Luwingu District during the 2010 Census of Population and Housing Exercise.

The Deputy Minister in the Vice-President’s Office (Mr E. C. Lungu): Mr Speaker, prior to 1978, Chilubi District was part of Luwingu District. In 1978, Cabinet decided to turn Chilubi into a district. In 1982, a Statutory Instrument (SI) was issued to give legal backing to the creation of Chilubi District. However, SI No. 30 of 1982 was found to be in contradiction with what was contained in the agreed narrative description of Chilubi and Luwingu districts in 1978. As a result of this, in 1983, another SI, No.130 of 1983, was issued. SI No. 30 of 1982 had mistakenly included, in Chilubi, some areas that were in Luwingu District. The dispute was around Isangano area.

According to the Central Statistical Office (CSO) maps, the census supervising area and the standard enumeration area, part of Bumba Ward is shown to be under Isangano Ward in Lubansenshi Constituency, under Luwingu District. It is for this reason that the said population was captured under Luwingu District during the 2010 Census of Population and Housing.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, following the answers given by the hon. Deputy Minister, which have clearly indicated that these issues have remained unresolved for a long time, I would like to know the stance the Government intends to take with a view to correcting the situation.

Mr E. C. Lungu: Mr Speaker, the Government is still pursuing the matter by talking to the relevant stakeholders to see how the agreed narrative can be in conformity with the SI’s issued.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kakoma (Zambezi West): Mr Speaker, in answering the question relating to the creation of Chilubi District, the hon. Minister informed the House that Cabinet sat and agreed on the creation of that district. I would like to take advantage of that answer to find out whether Cabinet has sat, this time around, to decide on new districts to be created in the country and how many are planned to be created?

The Vice-President (Dr Scott): Mr Speaker, Cabinet has not yet sat on this issue.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mweetwa (Choma Central): Mr Speaker, from the hon. Member for Chilubi’s question, it is clear that, in the past, consultations have been made with stakeholders in deciding boundaries of districts. I would like to find out from His Honour the Vice-President why, now, under the PF Government, it is convenient to decide boundaries without consulting stakeholders.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, of course, some stakeholders are consulted, but the question is how many stakeholders should be consulted. It is like determining how long a piece of string is. If you consult every single person who might have a stake in the creation of a district, you will be at it for hundred years.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Lubezhi (Namwala): Mr Speaker, from His Honour the Vice-President’s answer, some stakeholders are consulted before the formation of a district. Therefore, we would like to know those who were consulted for the Southern Province.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I do not have the details to answer that question. Again, if the question was more accurately posed or came as a separate question, we would consult for an answer.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}


156. Mr Hamusonde (Nangoma) asked the Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication what plans the Government had to control falling stones on the Kafue/Chirundu Highway, especially around the Kapiri Ngozi area, to reduce the danger of injury to motorists.

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, the rehabilitation of the hilly section of the road from Kafue to Chirundu took into account the fact that rock falls will take three to four years to stop completely. They will only stop when the slopes on the hills stabilise or when the material consolidates. With a view to providing an immediate and lasting engineering solution to the problem, the Road Development Agency (RDA) will carry out a detailed investigation on the nature of the rock falls along the same road and will apply appropriate interventions afterwards. These interventions include fencing, wall barriers, where possible, and also the use of high energy absorption panels to prevent danger to motorists. In the meantime, the RDA is monitoring the Kapiri Ngozi part of the road.

However, I hasten to add that the RDA engaged a contractor to carry out routine maintenance works that included removing falling rocks on the section of the road to safeguard motorists. In 2011, the RDA engaged Teichmann Plant Zambia Limited to remove rocks that had fallen during the 2010 rainy season. The RDA is in the process of engaging a contractor, again, to carry out maintenance works on this stretch of the road.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamusonde: Mr Speaker, I would like to know how regularly this road is checked and serviced.

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, we are all aware that this is one of our busiest roads and is of importance to our economy. The ministry, through its agency, carries out regular inspections on this road to ensure that nothing similar to what happened in 2009 recurs.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mweetwa: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister must be aware that the road between Kafue and Mazabuka and, in particular, Munali Hills, is extremely narrow and dangerous to the extent that if one truck breaks down, it blocks the road for hours, causing a huge inconvenience and danger to the travelling public. Do you, as a ministry, have any plans to expand that road, especially at the Munali Hills area, the same way the Chirundu Road has been expanded around the Kapiri Ngozi area to make it safer now for travel?

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, we have those plans and we are looking at that stretch of the road as part of the Livingstone/Chililabombwe Road. We are very concerned about improving the entire road from Livingstone to Chililabombwe.

I thank you, Sir.

Professor Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda): Mr Speaker, the response from the hon. Minister is an assurance that, in four years time, the falling rocks would have been controlled by the RDA. Is the hon. Minister really giving us the assurance that natural phenomenon such falling rocks, will be controlled by the RDA in four years time?

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, to the extent that our engineering knowledge enables us to do, we are confident about that assurance.

I thank you, Sir.


157.    Mr Hamusonde asked the Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry:

(a)    when former employees of the Kafue Textiles of Zambia (KTZ), who were sitting tenants of the institutional houses, would be offered for sale the houses they occupy; and

(b)    when the outstanding terminal benefits would be paid.

The Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mr Sichinga): Mr Speaker, the former employees of Kafue Textiles of Zambia, who are sitting tenants of the institutional houses, have not yet been offered for sale the houses that they occupy. I wish to mention that there have been previous attempts to deal with this issue. To proceed with the sale of the Houses, the Government prepared a Cabinet memorandum some time in 2007 through the Ministry of Finance and National Planning, recommending the following:

(i)    the Government offered the houses to sitting tenants who are former KTZ employees in the 2006 Government valuation exercise that was undertaken.

(ii)    to transfer the title deeds to sitting tenants after fully paying for the houses and upon payment of the transfer charges.

(iii)    to allow the sitting tenants who are non-employees of KTZ to buy the houses at the 2006 Government valuation prices; and

(iv)    to sell commercial properties at market prices through the tender process.

However, at the seventh meeting, in 2009, Cabinet did not accept the above recommendations by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning. Instead, Cabinet decided that a ministerial committee comprising the Ministers of Finance and National Planning, Agriculture and Co-operatives, Local Government and Housing, Works and Supply, Labour and Social Security, Presidential Affairs and Deputy Minister of Justice be constituted. The committee was expected to come up with comprehensive guidelines on the sale of the KTZ houses and other Government-owned housing stock which would include the pricing and determining the rightful beneficiaries. Thereafter, the committee was to report back on the matter. Two meetings of the ministerial committee took place and proceeded to make recommendations. However, the matter was not concluded. 

In this regard, the Government, through the Ministry of Finance and National Planning, intends to submit a fresh Cabinet memorandum on this matter for Cabinet consideration. 

Mr Speaker, this is the status with regard to the payment of terminal benefits to former employees of KTZ.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamusonde: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister said that part payment towards the former workers’ dues was made. May I know when they will be paid in full?

Mr Sichinga: Mr Speaker, that is the second part of the question which I inadvertently omitted. However, let me provide the information.

Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that there are no outstanding terminal benefits that the Government needs to settle as all terminal benefits to former KTZ employees were paid. Further, it should be noted that the KTZ had debt amounting to K188 billion as at 31st December, 2003. Of this amount, K142 billion was owed to the Commonwealth Development Corporation (CDC) and International Finance Corporation (IFC) and K19.7 billion was owed to employees as retrenchment benefits. 

Sir, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning undertook to settle the debt owed by the KTZ while CDC and IFC agreed to accept only 10 per cent of the outstanding loan amount through deeds that were signed on 1st June, 2003. Of the remaining K47 billion, K38 billion was owed to quasi-Government institutions while K9 billion was owed to private institutions, including SWAP Spinning and LONRHO. 

On account of the deeds of the assignment, the KTZ assets were mortgaged to the Government as secured creditors. To avoid liquidation and possible loss by the employees, it was decided that KTZ hold a creditors meeting which it did in 2004 to consider a scheme of arrangement as opposed to liquidation. In this scheme of arrangement, its creditors, under which they were to be paid only a portion of their debt, it was decided that the KTZ enter into an agreement with employees under which the employees were to be paid only 50 per cent of what was due to them. To this, the employees agreed and the terminal benefits were calculated as at 31 March, 2004 which amounted to K21.6 billion. This was subsequently paid. Therefore, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning, acting on behalf of the Government, settled 50 per cent of the accrued terminal benefits as full and final payment to former employees of the KTZ.

Mr Speaker, this is how the matter of the dues that were to be paid to the employees was settled.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mweetwa: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out when the PF Government will clear the backlog of retirees who have not received their money for a very long time, as this was part of their campaign promise. You promised that once voted into power, you would clear the retirees at a short notice.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sichinga: Mr Speaker, I have no intention of giving a bonus answer to that question because, quite frankly, it is a different question that does not border on issues pertaining to KTZ employees who were owed terminal benefits. The question was very specific and the answer has been given. As soon as the hon. Member for Choma Central brings that question, I believe that the Ministry of Finance and National Planning will be able to give an appropriate answer.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kazabu (Nkana): Mr Speaker, what is the policy of the PF Government on institutional houses.

Mr Sichinga: Mr Speaker, I am sure the Government would be quite keen to make a response to that particular question but, as the hon. Member of Parliament for Nkana would appreciate, the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry does not handle matters pertaining to the Housing Policy. Therefore, may I ask that he submits this as a question. I am absolutely positive that the hon. Minister responsible for that area will be able to provide an answer. If he so wishes, he may ask questions pertaining to the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Lubezhi: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out the status of the KTZ. Is it still used as a maize shed?

Mr Sichinga: Mr Speaker, fortunately, I was Member of Parliament for Kafue from 2001 to 2006. Therefore, I can safely give an answer because it relates to what is taking place. 

Sir, the KTZ was privatised and sold to African Textiles. At the moment, the institution is not operating as a textile producing company. Instead, the building is used for storing maize. It is regrettable that we have come to this stage. However, I also want to assure the hon. Member of Parliament for Namwala that the ministry is not sitting idly. We have called for a meeting to discuss the issue of the cotton and textile sub-sector to see if we can revamp it.

Mr Speaker, as a result of cheap imports from China, our textile industry as well as elsewhere in most African countries, has been adversely affected. So, we are seeking ways in which we can redress the situation. The hon. Deputy Minister for Commerce, Trade and Industry is working actively on that matter. Subsequently, we shall submit a report once it has been dealt with.

I thank you, Sir.


158. Mr Mwanza asked the hon. Minister of Education, Science and Vocational Training whether the Government had any plans to establish a university in the North-Western Province and, if so, in which district the university would be situated.

The Deputy Minister of Education, Science and Vocational Training (Professor Willombe): Mr Speaker, the ministry has intentions of establishing, at least, one university in each province, including the North-Western Province. It is not yet decided in which district the university will be established in the North-Western Province.

I thank you, Sir.


159. Mr Mwanza asked the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Livestock when the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) would open satellite depots at the following areas in Solwezi West Parliamentary Constituency:

(i)    Wamafwa;

(ii)    Wanyinwa;

(iii)    Kalenda in Chief Mateso’s area;

(iv)    Kalengelenge;

(v)    Mangala; 

(vi)    Kanzala;

(vii)    Chitungu; and

(viii)    Kambishi.

The Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Livestock (Mr N. Banda): Mr Speaker, the procedure used by the FRA to select and open satellite depots across the country is that the agency consults the district authorities, namely:

(i)    district commissioner;

(ii)    district agricultural co-ordinator; and

(iii)    the chairperson of the co-operative contracted to operate as warehouse manager to identify depot locations on condition that the area has a marketed surplus of 5,000 x 50kg bags of maize and located 20 km or more from an existing satellite depot.

Mr Speaker, these locations, when identified by the district authorities, are then forwarded to the agency for implementation with consideration for the availability of resources.

Sir, during the 2010/2011 marketing season, the FRA operated over 1,000 satellite depots throughout all the districts in the country. This averaged approximately fourteen satellite depots per district.

Mr Speaker, the agency is currently planning and budgeting for the 2011/2012 marketing season; a process which also involves determining the number of satellite depots to be opened in each district.

Sir, the district authorities in Solwezi West Parliamentary Constituency are, therefore, advised to submit proposals of locations within the district where satellite depots can be opened.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, the distance between Solwezi and Wamafwa is close to 200 km and there is only one depot. I thank the hon. Minister for informing us that we can consult the district leadership. However, what is the PF Government doing to ensure that, at least, there is one or two depots in the areas mentioned above?

The Minister of Agriculture and Livestock (Mr Chenda): Mr Speaker, the intention of the Government is to lighten the burden of the farmers in transporting their produce to service depots. Given the information that we have received from the hon. Member of Parliament for Solwezi West, we will definitely look into this matter because 200 km between depots is more than the required distance for a depot to be provided. The average is supposed to be a radius of 20 km.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kampyongo (Shiwang’andu): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out if the FRA is considering other options knowing very well that in rural areas, it is difficult to set up satellite depots to cater for farmers adequately. Is the Government considering the issue of logistics such as transport to ferry the stock of maize from various points to storage facilities? I ask this because, as we think of increasing the number of depots, the issue of storage and caring for the grain is also a very important one that should be taken into account. May I know if there are other options in terms of transporting the grain?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, satellite depots are not meant to be permanent structures. They are developed to help the farmers sale their maize within the shortest possible distance. However, arrangements are made to transport the produce to holding depots.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mweetwa: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out what expedient measures are put in place while awaiting this assessment from the district officials, given that there is a lot of wastage of the maize harvest right across the country, especially in Choma where people’s homes were used as storage sheds.

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, the Government has put in place measures to construct additional storage facilities. In addition, we are also rehabilitating and leasing the old storage facilities. I must emphasise that satellite depots are not supposed to be holding depots. Ideally, as the farmers are selling maize, transporters should be available to transport the maize to the main holding depots. We will try and implement the programme this year.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mushanga (Bwacha): Mr Speaker, the depots that we are talking about are not permanent structures. Does the Government have any intentions of rehabilitating the silos around the country?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, indeed, there is a programme in place to rehabilitate the silos.

I thank you, Sir.


160. Mr Chisala asked the Minister of Agriculture and Livestock what caused the outbreak of the fish disease known as epizootic ulcerative syndrome in the Kafue River between Chanyanya and Kafue Gorge as reported in the ministry’s Annual Report for 2010.

Mr N. Banda: Mr Speaker, epizootic ulcerative syndrome (EUS) is caused by a fungus called aphanomyces invadans. The outbreak of EUS in the Kafue River in the area between Kafue Gorge and Chanyanya was caused by the deterioration of the quality of water due to pollution. The pollutants flowed into the river system as the water receded after the floods of the 2009/2010 rainy season. These pollutants in the water created conditions that were conducive for triggering the disease outbreak. It was suspected that the fungus must have translocated from the Zambezi river system by some vector agent which could include humans moving boats between the two river systems.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. Deputy Minister for his elaborate answer. However, may I further know if this disease no longer exists in the Kafue River?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, there has been no report of an outbreak as of now.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, pollution manifests itself in different forms and origins. May I know from the hon. Minister what exactly polluted the Kafue River and affected the fish?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, I do not have the details of the actual contents of the pollutants. It is a known fact that the industries that are operating in Kafue are discharging their effluent into the river. These include both industrial and municipal sites.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Imenda (Luena): Mr Speaker, can the hon. Minister confirm whether such viruses are not harmful to human life?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, I am not in a position to confirm whether this particular virus is harmful to human beings. The general rule, as advised by veterinary officers is that members of the public are not supposed to eat anything that dies on its own. I would like to advise that members of the public should not eat fish that is dying from this syndrome.

I thank you, Sir.


161. Mr Chisala asked the Minister of Agriculture and Livestock:

(a)    how many aquaculture research stations there were in Zambia as of November, 2011, and what their names were;

(b)    how many fingerlings were produced at Misamfu and Fiyongoli Aquaculture Research stations in 2009 and 2010; and

(c)    how many fish farmers benefited from the production of fingerlings at (b) above.

The Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Livestock (Brigadier-General Kapaya): Mr Speaker, …

Business was suspended from 1045 hours until 1100 hours.

[MR DEPUTY SPEAKER in the Chair]

Brigadier-General Kapaya: Mr Speaker, before business was suspended, I was saying that, as of November, 2011, there were five aquaculture research stations in Zambia. These were National Aquaculture Research and Development Centre in Mwekera, Kitwe; Chilanga Aquaculture Research Station in Chilanga, Lusaka; Chipata Aquaculture Research Station in Chipata; Fiyongoli Aquaculture Research Station in Mansa and Misamfu Aquaculture Research Station in Kasama.

Mr Speaker, Misamfu Aquaculture Research Station produced 47,748 and 92,822 fingerlings for rearing by fish farmers in 2009 and 2010, respectively. Fiyongoli Aquaculture Research Station produced 150,000 and 250,000 fingerlings in 2009 and 2010, respectively.

Sir, in 2009, seventy small-scale fish farmers benefited from the production of 47,748 fingerlings at Misamfu Aquaculture Research Station. In 2010, fish farmers had access to the 92,822 fingerlings through non-governmental organisations (NGOs), such as the Reformed Church in Zambia (RCZ), Peace Corps, CARITAS, World Vision and the Irish Aid.

In 2009, twenty fish farmers benefited from 50,000 fingerlings from Fiyongoli Aquaculture Research Station, whilst 100,000 fingerlings were used to stock Lupuma Community Dam. 

In 2010, 150,000 fingerlings were accessed by twenty groups of fish farmers and fifteen individuals who did not belong to any group.  The remaining 100,000 fingerlings were used to stock community dams. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, I wish to salute the hon. Deputy Minister for the detailed response. However, going by his response, it has been revealed that Zambia has a limited number of research stations. Is the ministry considering setting up more, especially in districts like Chilubi, which have large water bodies?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, Sir …

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order! 

Hon. Minister, it is either “Mr Speaker” or “Sir”. You may continue. 

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, I thank you for the correction. 

Mr Speaker, …

Hon. Opposition Members: Sir!


Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, we have nineteen fish breeding centres in the country, five of which are research centres. Currently, these are adequate to carry out the research that we require. In the Northern Province, there is one in Kasama which can adequately cater for Chilubi as well.  

I thank you, Sir. {mospagebreak}

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, we have nineteen fish breeding centres, five of which are research centres. Has the Government any desire to have research centres in all the provincial headquarters to enable the rural masses access the fingerlings?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, I mentioned that we have, at least, one breeding centre in every province, which is expected to cater for the needs of each province. 

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, I have a question for my neighbour, here, ... 


Professor Lungwangwa: … the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Livestock. 

Mrs Masebo: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order! 

You cannot be given a point of order; you are in the wrong seat. 


Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, can the hon. Minister enlighten the House on the type of research that goes on in aquaculture research stations?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, this is a new question. 


Mr Kaingu (Mwandi): Mr Speaker, I also have a question for the hon. Minister, who is also my neighbour. 


Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, transporting fingerlings requires oxygen. Since the hon. Minister said that each province has only one research station, how is it possible to transport fingerlings from Mongu to Mwandi considering that they need oxygen? 

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, I may not have the technical details on how it is done, but I know that, when transported in large quantities, the fingerlings, especially on programmes of restocking, are transported by air. As for how they can be transported from Mongu to Mwandi, I do not have the answer. 

I thank you, Sir. 


162. Mr Hamusonde asked the Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication when the tarring of the Mumbwa/Landless Corner Road would be completed. 

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, this is the first road I visited when I was appointed Deputy Minister. At the time of building this road, it was split into two, Lot 1 and Lot 2. Lot 1 starts from the junction of T-1 and M-20 at Landless Corner and is a distance of 65 km while Lot 2 starts from where Lot 1 ends and goes for a stretch of 115 km. You will note that the first Lot is 65 km while the second Lot is 50 km. The problem is with Lot 1. 

Mr Speaker, Lot 1 was awarded to Wade Adams but, unfortunately, the contract was terminated on 27th September, 2011. Before the termination of the contract, the company was paid an advance of K11.9 billion in January, 2011. In addition, the same company was paid K2.9 billion for the actual works done. At the point of termination of the contract, this company had been paid K14.8 billion.

Hon. Opposition Members: Bakabolala! 

Dr Mwali: The company appealed against the termination of the contract in December, 2011 and the case has gone for arbitration, which is likely to take four months, up to April, 2012.  If the case is in our favour, we plan to engage another contractor; a process that will take us another three months up to August, 2012. 

Therefore, Mr Chairman … Oh, Mr Speaker, Sir. 


Dr Mwali: I am sorry, Mr Speaker. 

Mr Deputy Speaker: You may continue. 

Dr Mwali: Therefore, Mr Speaker, the completion date is March, 2014, which we deeply regret. That is if we follow this process.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamusonde: Mr Speaker, may I find out from the hon. Minister whether the Nampundwe/Mumbwa Road, which passes through Blue Lagoon, will be tarred since it passes through three constituencies just like the Mumbwa/Landless Corner Road?

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, we are fully aware that we are in charge of all the roads in the Republic of Zambia. We are willing to answer questions on each one of these roads provided the questions are given to us as per procedure.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, in response to the question on the Mumbwa/Landless Corner Road, the hon. Deputy Minister indicated that a contract involving Wade Adams was terminated. May I know the circumstances that led to this termination? Further, maybe, he can tell us, according to today’s costing, having paid K14 billion, what the actual cost to build a tarmac road per kilometre is and how many kilometres have been done this far?

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, I will start with the last question regarding how many kilometres have been done to date. This concerns Lot 2 on which we had engaged China Hinan Corporation …


Dr Mwali: We are talking about the question …

Mr Deputy Speaker: Continue!

Mr Mwila: Continue!

Mr Deputy Speaker: Hon. Minister, you may continue answering.

Dr Mwali: Sir, for the benefit of other hon. Members who may wish to know, China Hinan was given the task of working on Lot 2 and the works are at 90 per cent. The company is right on schedule. 


Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, I had mentioned that the problem between Wade Adams and ourselves is under arbitration. We will just ask this House to …


Mr Deputy Speaker: Hon. Deputy Minister, take your seat. 

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha (Keembe): Mr Speaker, even though the hon. Deputy Minister has answered the question very well regarding the road in question, I still have a question. Why does the Government not allow China Hinan to do the works all the way up to Landless Corner? The company should be allowed to complete the work as opposed to re-advertising and going into a new contract with another company. Entering into a new contract will be a waste of time. We can finish the works on this road very quickly.


Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Can I be protected, Sir?

Mr Deputy Speaker: Yes, you are protected. You may continue, please.

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: When the hon. Minister is responding to my question, can he also talk about rehabilitating the road before the contract to tar the road is entered into because it has now become impassable.

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, although we are tempted to share the same position with the hon. Member, we are mindful of the dictates by the Zambia Public Procurement Authority (ZPPA) Act which we feel we are bound to follow. The road in question has to undergo the normal tendering procedure again. We do not have to go against our own regulations. 

With regard to what should be done before the road is tarred, I agree with you that the road is in a deplorable condition. As usual, we are going to do the holding maintenance.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Chilangwa (Kawambwa): Mr Speaker, even though the hon. Deputy Minister gave a detailed answer, I would still like him to talk about the cost per kilometre of constructing a road in this country. How much do we spend per kilometre to construct a road to bitumen status?

Mr Chisala: Hear, hear!

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, I would be the first person to give you a definite answer if it was there. The cost of construction varies from road to road depending on the terrain and factors such as the location of materials and others. If the hon. Member of Parliament for Kawambwa is interested to know how much it can cost for us to work on a particular road in his constituency, he can give me the name of that road so that we can work out the estimates.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Deputy Speaker: Just by way of guidance. While the Chair appreciates the idea of the hon. Members of the Executive advising those who ask questions to go and get details from them, it is also a good idea that answers are given in the House because other hon. Members of Parliament also want to get that information.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Deputy Speaker: If you have the answers, please, give them on the Floor of the House. If you do not have the answers, then bring them to the House at your convenience.

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I remember Hon. Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha expressed his frustration regarding the works on the road in question some time last year. Now, my question to the hon. Minister is, why did the contractor fail to perform? When contracts are given, first of all, a contractor should show …

Mr Deputy Speaker: Hon. Member of Parliament for Shiwang’andu, you have asked your question. Do not make a statement.

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, I have been guided by the many legal counsels who are here that since the case is in court or under arbitration, I should not talk more about it.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Monde (Itezhi-tezhi): Mr Speaker, my question is about the K11 billion which was paid for works under the contract for Lot 1. Under what circumstances …


Mr Monde: Mr Speaker, there were two payments which were made. There was one for K2 billion and the other one was K11 billion. Under what circumstances did the Road Development Agency (RDA) pay out this colossal sum of money before works were done? Does the current contracting system allow the RDA to make advance payments?


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order! 

There is some murmuring from my right, saying the Chair is supposed to guide. No, the Chair cannot guide when the hon. Deputy Minister initially gave an answer and a follow-up question is asked. It becomes difficult for the Chair to guide because I understood the hon. Deputy Minister to have said two payments were made and the question is on the second payment. So, in that respect, I think the hon. Deputy Minister is required to answer that question. Can he do so?

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, I said that the first payment was an advance payment which the company in question was entitled to. The second payment was for the job which was deemed to have been done.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mooya (Moomba): Sir, I just want to make a follow-up question to the one which was asked by the hon. Member of Parliament for Keembe. My question is related to the idea of having more than one contractor for one project.

Ms Sayifwanda: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Ms Sayifwanda: Mr Speaker, I am sorry for disturbing the hon. Member who was asking a supplementary question. I have done so because I have a serious concern. This an honourable House. As such, the Back Benchers on your right and hon. Opposition Members on this side can ask any question.  On the other hand, it is the job of the Executive to be attentive and …

Hon. Members: Vanish?

Ms Sayifwanda: Sorry, Mr Speaker. The Executive has to furnish the House and the nation at large with the appropriate responses or answers. I have been sitting here quietly listening to some of the responses from the Executive. The Ruling Party has taken a ‘to-whom-it-may-concern’ approach when responding to questions in this House.


Ms Sayifwanda: Is it really in order for the House to continue conducting business this way instead of the Leader of Government Business in the House directing the Secretary to Cabinet to arrange a workshop for the purposes of inducting …


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

Ms Sayifwanda: … hon. Members of the Executive because it seems there is a gap between the Executive and other Government officials?

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order, order, Madam! 

Let us not use points of order to debate. Let us be precise. The Chair is not very clear on specifically what the point of order raised by the hon. Member is about. Can you make your point of order succinctly?

Ms Sayifwanda: Mr Speaker, is His Honour the Vice-President in order to keep quiet while the hon. Deputy Minister is struggling with answers? 

Mr Deputy Speaker: The ruling is that the point of order cannot be sustained. 

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Deputy Speaker: The hon. Member for Moomba may continue.

Mr Mooya: Sir, I was seeking clarification on the idea of having more than one contractor per project.


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

Mr Mooya: May the hon. Minister prove to this House that it is less costly than engaging just one contractor per project.

Mr Deputy Speaker: The Chair is having difficulties seeing how the hon. Deputy Minister can prove that what is being done now is less costly. I do not know what proof he can to adduce at this point. All the same, is the hon. Deputy Minister able to answer that question?

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member for Moomba is asking me to prove that it is less costly for one contractor to do the entire stretch. If we look at the bids that we received, we will notice that Wade Adams was asking for K80 billion to do a 65 km stretch while China Hinan’s bid was K101 billion for 50 km. So, I really do not know how I can prove that just having one contractor is cheaper.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Antonio (Kaoma Central): Mr Speaker, we have been told that the cost of tarring a kilometre of road in Zambia varies from one point to another. May I know how much it would cost to make a kilometre of the road in question.

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, I recall that the hon. Minister of Health, Dr Kasonde, had requested the hon. Minister of Education, Science and Vocational Training to revise the curriculum so that we can go for an Arithmetic course. On the 50 km stretch being worked on by China Hinan, the cost per kilometre is K101 billion divided by 50 km. I do not think we need a sophisticated computer for any hon. Member of Parliament to arrive at the answer to that. 

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear! Elo waamba ukulanda.




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

Question put and agreed to.


The House adjourned at 1133 hours until 1430 hours on Tuesday, 6th March, 2012.