Debates- Tuesday, 14th June, 2011

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Tuesday, 14th June, 2011

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]





The Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives (Dr Kazonga): Mr Speaker, I wish to thank you for permitting me to make a ministerial statement to this august House on the preparations for crop marketing and input distribution arrangements for the 2011/2012 season.

Mr Speaker, I will divide my statement into five very brief sections:

1. Crop Production and National Food Balance Sheet

Mr Speaker, as the House is now aware, Zambia has yet again produced a bumper harvest in the 2010/2011 agricultural season.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Kazonga: Last year, the country attained a record maize harvest of 2,795,483 metric tonnes. This year, maize production has exceeded last year’s production by 8 per cent, to reach a record 3,020,380 metric tones.

The national food balance sheet for the 2011/2012 marketing season based on the crop forecasting survey covering 2010 to 2012, shows that the country has produced sufficient maize for both human consumption and industrial use. As already stated, total maize production in the 2010/2011 season has been estimated at 3,020,380 metric tonnes. Due to the good production in the previous season, the country has a maize carry over stock of 848,606 metric tonnes as at 1st May, 2011. When we add the carryover stock from last season to the maize production for the 2010/2011 agricultural season, the total supply of maize available for the 2011/2012 marketing season is 3,868,986 metric tonnes.

Mr Speaker, for an estimated population of 13.4 million people, the food balance sheet shows that total maize required for human consumption amounts to 1,396,341 metric tonnes. The estimated maize requirement for industrial use, specifically stock feed and breweries is 270,000 metric tonnes.

Mr Speaker, when total maize requirements are subtracted from total available maize stock, the national food balance sheet indicates that the country has recorded a maize surplus of 1,661,626 metric tonnes. This has been possible because of the MMD Government’s good agricultural policies and programmes, and the hard work of our farmers.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, for the sake of emphasis, this has been possible of the MMD Government’s good agricultural policies and programmes, and the hard work of our farmers.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, this year’s record maize harvest provides the country with a good opportunity to adequately feed the nation and the potential to export the surplus crop.

Mr Speaker, the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) has so far exported 290,000 metric tonnes, valued at US48.2 million. The agency also sold 168,000 metric of maize valued at US$27.9 million to the local millers.

Mr Speaker, my ministry understands that we need to explore other ways of utilising our surplus crop. We therefore, need to look at putting in place mechanisms and incentives that will result in effective value addition to maize, such as production of affordable stock feed. This will help to boost the livestock industry. I am aware that demand for poultry and other livestock products is very high in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA) region. The private sector should thus be encouraged to invest in value addition. The promotion of the livestock industry will increase incomes for many of our farmers engaged in livestock and poultry production, and enable the country to increase foreign exchange earnings.

2. Crop Marketing and Financing Arrangements

Mr Speaker, given the unprecedented bumper harvest that the country has recorded, it is important that adequate measures are put in place to ensure that the maize is properly stored and marketed.

Mr Speaker, last year, the FRA purchased 883,000 metric tonnes of maize. This year, it intends to purchase 1.3 million metric tonnes valued at K1.69 trillion. In addition, the FRA will purchase paddy rice amounting to 5,000 metric tonnes valued at K7.5 billion.

Mr Speaker, measures have already been taken to source financing for purchasing of the surplus maize and rice crops. The FRA will use funds allocated in the 2011 Budget, bank loans and crop sales, and has set up buying points in all our seventy-four districts in the country. On average, fifteen satellite depots will be opened in every district so that farmers have access to the market. The official crop marketing programme started on 1st June, 2011. However, the agency will only purchase maize with moisture levels below 12.5 per cent. In terms of other logistics notably, securing of grain bags and tarpaulins, and appointment of warehouse managers, the FRA is already taking the necessary steps. As already announced by the agency, it will purchase maize at K65,000 per 50 Kg of maize.

My ministry expects the private sector to actively participate in the crop marketing exercise. Further, we will continue to issue export permits to various private players to export our surplus grain to the regional markets. This will be done without compromising our national food security. Let me encourage the private sector to fully participate in crop marketing, both locally and internationally.

Sir, I am aware that potential markets exist in Zimbabwe, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya and Sudan. All possible market opportunities must be explored, particularly, by the private sector. This House recently passed the Agricultural Credit Act, which aims at promoting agricultural marketing through the use of the warehouse receipt system. I would like to encourage the private sector to take advantage of the provisions of this Act.

3. Crop Storage

Mr Speaker, due to the consecutive bumper harvests, the country is facing the challenge of limited storage space. Approximately 2 million metric tonnes of storage capacity is needed to meet the nation’s demand. The current serviceable capacity of the storage sheds of 1.3 million tonnes is inadequate to meet the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) and the private sector’s needs. The Government is currently implementing a long term programme to increase the capacity of storage facilities in the country. This involves the construction and rehabilitation of various types of storage facilities. Under the Chinese Concessional Loans Phase 1 project; eight new storage sheds were constructed in 2010, which have a total capacity of 98,096 metric tonnes, at a total cost of US$11.6 million. These sheds are in Central, Copperbelt, Southern, Northern, North Western and Eastern Provinces.

The Government, through the FRA, also embarked on a programme to rehabilitate, upgrade and construct storage facilities in various parts of the country. The total cost for this undertaking was K76.6 billion. This programme has increased usable storage space by 187,300 metric tonnes. Grain silos are the best form of storage as the grain can be stored for between five and seven years without losing its quality. The Lusaka Silo was rehabilitated in 2008 at total cost of K11.5 billion. Over time, the Government intends to rehabilitate all the remaining five silos in the country.

This year, as a short term measure, the agency has embarked on a programme to build ninety-eight slabs in strategic locations. The total capacity of the slabs is K450,000 metric tonnes. The agency will continue to rehabilitate existing storage facilities and rent private ones.

4. Farming Inputs Distribution Arrangements for the 2011/2012 Season

Mr Speaker, the number of farmers who received support under the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) was 890,000 in 2010/2011 season. The programme has been improved in terms of targeting of beneficiaries through involvement of communities in the selection of beneficiaries. A total of 178,000 metric tonnes of fertiliser was distributed under the FISP in the 2010/2011 season while maize seed distribution stood at 8,790 tonnes. The usage of fertiliser from both the FISP and the private sector has increased nationally over the last two seasons. For the coming 2011/2012 season, the FISP will target 902,400 farmers with 180,000 metric tonnes of fertiliser and 8,985 metric tonnes of maize seed, and 39 metric tonnes of rice seed. The tendering process for the procurement of the inputs for the coming season has reached advanced stage. It is Government’s plan therefore, that all inputs reach farmers by 30th September, 2011.

Mr Speaker, the MMD Government will continue to provide input subsidies to our farmers to enhance national food security and improve the welfare of our farming community as well as to accord consumers affordable food prices. As this august House may know, world food prices are rising. According to Oxfam and the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the average cost of food could increase between 120 and 180 per cent by 2030. This will tighten the squeeze on the poor who spend over 8 per cent of their income on food. Given this scenario, it is important that the country continues to record surplus food production to mitigate high prices. To the skeptics who think that we are wasting resources in subsidising our agricultural sector, I wish to inform them that Zambia is better off with surplus maize than importing it at astronomical prices.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

5. Crop Diversification

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, lastly, the Government is committed to crop diversification. To this end, several policy measures are being implemented by my ministry. Last season, the FISP included rice seed for the first time. The Government will facilitate exploitation of the full potential of cassava as it is not only food crop, but an important industrial crop, which can generate income for our farmers, create employment and earn foreign exchange for our country, thereby, contributing to national economic growth and development.

My ministry will continue to promote the production and marketing of other food and cash crops to mitigate effects of climate change as well as to hedge against price volatility and preserve our resource base.

6. Conclusion

Mr Speaker, it is clear that with these measures put in place by the Government for the crop marketing and farming input distribution, agriculture is poised to grow and significantly contribute to economic growth, employment creation, food security and poverty reduction.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Hon. Members may now ask questions on points of clarification on the statement delivered by the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives.

Mr Matongo (Pemba): Mr Speaker. Could the hon. Minister clarify the position that there will be fifteen satellite depots in every district, and that Kakuba Depot in Pemba Constituency, which has not been operational for some time…

Mr Mabenga: Kakuba!

Mr Matongo: Yes Kakuba. He knows where it is. Will it be one of those that will be opened because we need those points? Please confirm.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, on average we shall have fifteen in every district. When we multiply 15 by 74, we will get 1,110 satellite depots throughout the country. For this specific one in Pemba, Kakuba, I would need to counter-check if it is there. Otherwise, the Government wants to make sure that our farmers are as close as possible to satellite depots based on the production and also the distances. I will counter-check that.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kakoma (Zambezi West): Mr Speaker, the Government has decided to export some of the surplus maize. In his ministerial statement, the hon. Minister has informed us that there is still 800,000 tonnes of carry-over stocks of maize. May I find out why the Government has failed to export the remaining surplus?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, the Government has not failed to export the remaining surplus maize. It is currently in the process of doing so. We have been able to export 290,000 metric tonnes of maize. We will continue to offload as much of the surplus as we can.

Thank you, Sir.

Mr Simama (Kalulushi): Mr Speaker, how is the hon. Minister going to deliver this good message of the bumper harvest to the people in the far-flung rural areas so that they can appreciate the Government’s developmental efforts?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, I wish to thank the hon. Member for Kalulushi for that very good question. The bumper harvest is having a very good impact on the lives of the people of Zambia in both rural and urban areas. We have been able to stabilise the prices of mealie-meal, particularly in the critical period between January and March. This is as a result of the bumper harvest.

Secondly, the rural population has benefited from the bumper harvest through their crop that they sold to the Government through the FRA. They are being empowered. Some farmers have been able to, for instance, buy canter trucks, send children to school and meet other household needs. Above all, the Government is meeting its vision of ensuring that every household is food secure. Indeed, the bumper harvest is having a very big impact on the people of Zambia.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott (Lusaka Central): Mr Speaker, five years ago, if one drove from Mansa to Nchelenge, he or she would find both sides of the road covered by very healthy cassava crop. If you drive the same route currently, you will find only maize grown there because the farmers have responded to the subsidies and dictates of the current market. What kind of diversification has taken place? Rather than diversifying, we have increased mono-cropping in this country.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, I want to indicate to the hon. Member for Lusaka Central that the diversification programme that the Government has embarked on is real. Under the Farmer Input Support Programme, it has been our tradition to give maize. In the last farming season, however, we included rice as one of the crops to be supported. Is that not diversification?


Dr Kazonga: Last year, we gave our farmers 30 metric tonnes of rice seed, and we want to increase to 39 metric tonnes this year. Is that not diversification? Additionally, other crops such as cassava are grown particularly in Luapula, North-Western and Northern provinces and the practice will be encouraged to continue. Cassava is grown for both domestic consumption and industry. Agricultural diversification is one of the key programmes that the Government has on the agenda.

Thank you, Sir.

Mr C. Mulenga (Chinsali): Mr Speaker, last year, the FRA ran out of empty grain bags and asked the farmers to use their own bags to sell maize. What assurance is the Government giving the farmers that the agency will not run out of bags this year? Have the bags already reached the farmers?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, I want to thank the hon. Member for Chinsali for that supplementary question. Empty grain bags will be provided to our farmers as they bring their crop to the satellite depots. At the moment, we have slightly over 17 million bags for our farmers to use. We want them to use the standard bags because they last longer during October and November when there is too much heat. Further to that, the FRA is in the process of procuring 23 million bags for our farmers. I wish to assure the farmers that they will use the FRA standard grain bags when they take the crop to the satellite depots.

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Speaker: Order! There is too much talking on my left hand side. The rest of the House would like to participate in the proceedings.

Mr Lubinda (Kabwata): Sir, the figures which the hon. Minister gave to us on the purchase and sale prices show that this Government is going to subsidise at the level of US$94 per tonne. Can he indicate to us what measures the Government has ever thought of implementing to promote the milling industry in the country so that Zambia can stop exporting subsidised maize and, instead, export mealie-meal and feedstock at a much higher price to cut the subsidy?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, that is why we are calling upon the private sector to participate and add value to these crops, in particular maize. Our role, as a Government, is to create an enabling environment, which is already there. Therefore, I call upon the private sector to participate in adding value to these crops.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Milupi (Luena): Mr Speaker, I am happy that the hon. Minister has been able to answer the question he failed to answer last week as regards the carry-over stock from last season which was 800,000 tonnes. Could he also clarify the matter that in addition to the very high cost of producing in this country, the Government has continued to subsidise maize for local consumption at the rate of K55,000 per 50 kilogram bag? Where is the Government getting all this money for subsidies?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, the Government is utilising the moneys appropriated by this House.

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Chongo (Mwense): Sir, since the storage capacity is low as indicated by the hon. Minister, which has affected districts like Mwense, what is the ministry doing to increase fertiliser allocation to such districts because allocation is based on production levels? Have these people opted to sell to countries like the Democratic Republic of Congo?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, I indicated in my ministerial statement that the Government has a programme of constructing storage facilities in different forms which include the silos, storage sheds and slabs. Areas where production is very high will be given priority on that programme. Apart from that, we want, as much as possible, to cover this country regardless of where that production is taking place. These storage facilities serve two purposes: one is storage of inputs, which are seed and fertiliser, while the other is storage of outputs, which are the actual crops like maize or rice.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Speaker gave the Floor to Hon. Muyanda.

Mr Muyanda: Mr Speaker, I do not know what to ask. I did not even indicate. Why have I been mentioned? I was seated.


Mr Speaker: Order! Your name came up.

Mr Muyanda: How?

Mr Speaker: Order! Then stay where you are. I am following the sequence in which you are indicated. The hon. Member for Chikankata may ask his question.

Mr Beenzu (Chikankata): Mr Speaker, maize in some depots has gone to waste. Considering that taxpayers’ money was used to purchase this maize, how will the Government recover the money?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, wastage in an exercise such as crop marketing is unavoidable. It is the amount of wastage that matters. The FRA has been able to assess the amount of wastage and put it at only 2 per cent. Regarding who is going to pay for this waste, my response is that we have in-built mechanisms for managing such concerns.

Dr Scott: The rats.

Dr Kazonga: The wastage is taken into account in the price structure of our exports as well as the local sales.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mrs Musokotwane (Katombola): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister said that we are going to get bags at the satellite depots. Is it possible for the ministry to sell to us bags before we take the maize to the depots so that we do not have to buy two bags… 

Hon. UPND Member: And reduce labour.

Mrs Musokotwane: …and reduce on labour and costs?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, for now, the farmers should bring their crop to the satellite depots so that we can put it in the standard bags. We shall discuss with the FRA whether the alternative suggested by the hon. Member can be pursued. If it is feasible, we have no reason not to proceed with it. We shall sit with the technocrats and consider the feasibility of the suggestion.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has indicated that the purchase of the crop this year will be partially financed by bank loans. I wish him to confirm that the way they have structured these bank loans is the reason we have a carry-over of 800,000 metric tonnes which farmers have failed to sell because the loans have basically made the maize in Zambia much more expensive compared with the price of maize in the region.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, I wish to indicate that the statement or the supplementary question that he has raised has clearly expressed his opinion. The true picture is that the bank loan facility is meant to assist our small-scale farmers and the country as a whole so that the crop does not go to waste.

Regarding repayment of loans, good progress has been made. The Finance Bank loan was cleared last month while the other will be cleared in July. As far as we are concerned, the way the loan was structured was within what was possible then.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr C. K. B. Banda, SC. (Chasefu): Mr Speaker, while applauding the Government on its wise decision to increase the number of satellite depots this year, the people of Chasefu want to know how many satellite depots will be established this year in their constituency where there is a bumper harvest.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for Chasefu for acknowledging that there is a bumper harvest. I know that he has just come from his own constituency where he saw how our farmers have performed. As regards the satellite depots planned for in that area, it is an average of 15 for every district. However, for specific constituencies, I would need to consult the records. If there is any problem in that structure because of the high production that is recorded in the area, consideration will still be made for additional support.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mushili (Ndola Central): Mr Speaker, would the hon. Minister confirm to the nation that this Government is unable to export the surplus maize because of its uncompetitive export price arising from the uncontrolled production costs?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, I do not know what the hon. Member means when he says that the Government has failed to export maize. I have said that we have been able to export 290,000 metric tonnes and we continued to do so. Is that inability? I doubt it is.

As regards the price, there are some fundamentals that the Government is concerned with and is working on. These are the basic fundamentals that are key reducing the cost of production of maize. These are being addressed by the Government because it is aware of them.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Chishya (Pambashe): Mr Speaker, could the hon. Minister clarify the withdrawal of the contract of buying maize from Mkushi District Co-operative Union and its award to an institution headed by a person with a disreputable character.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, the issue that has been raised by the hon. Member is quite serious. If the hon. Member of Parliament has any information on this co-operative union with regard to its performance or any other matter, I invite him to come to our office so that we get those details. If this information is proved true, we will withdraw that consideration.

I thank you, Sir

Mr Kamondo (Mufumbwe): Mr Speaker, may I find out whether the issuance of export permits will be taken to provincial headquarters, especially for North-Western Province where farmers would like to export their maize to Angola and the Democratic Republic of Congo?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, for now, the issuance of these permits will still be done in Lusaka. However, the Government is aware of the urgency of this exercise. We shall continue to provide permits to those that are interested in exporting. We will also consider ways of quickening the process so that the surplus can be exported

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kambwili (Roan): Mr Speaker, last year the Government exported maize at a cheaper price than it was bought, which is tantamount to subsidising consumption in foreign countries using taxpayers’ money. May I find out from the hon. Minister why the Government cannot just give that excess maize free of charge to poor people that are starving in Zambia?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the hon. Member of Parliament for Roan that the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) is already in the process of doing what he has suggested. The DMMU has data on those who have insufficient food. You may wish to know that, as a result of this bumper harvest, we are able to give the Ministry of Education, particularly the School Feeding Programme (SFP), 15,000 metric tonnes of maize. We are even considering adding to what has already been given so that our children can have access to food in order to improve attendance and, therefore, receive the much desired education.

Sir, in terms of further consideration for the needy, the Government’s position is very clear. It will assist any needy person or community with food. The bumper harvest will trickle down to them.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chazangwe (Choma Central): Mr Speaker, could the hard working hon. Minister explain to this august House what he means by bumper harvest. Is it propaganda? I am saying so because as you travel from Livingstone, you will never see any stack of maize. The prices of mealie-meal are high…

Mr Speaker: Order! Ask a question. Do not argue.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, let me begin by defining ‘bumper harvest’. It means extraordinary production and this is what we have experienced. In terms of what this bumper harvest is all about, it can easily be seen. I have visited many places, including Choma. When you go to the villages, you will see full granaries. That is an indication of the bumper harvest.
Mr Speaker, the period for seeing many bags by the roadside is yet to come. You are aware that the market season begins a bit slow, reaches its peak and, then goes down. Therefore, you will see a number of bags along the roadsides by July-August. As a Government, we are confidently talking about a bumper harvest because we have a mechanism that we employed which is known as Crop Forecast Survey (CFS).

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Shakafuswa (Katuba): Mr Speaker, what is the rationale of renting out storage facilities to companies such as Dunavant Zambia Limited (DZL), like the case is at Muchenje, in Katuba Constituency, where a shed has been rented for over ten years now, when we need these storage sheds for our maize and other produce?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, the issue of storage facilities is very important to us in meeting the challenges of the bumper harvest. Sometime back, the FRA went into contracts to lease out some of the facilities. At the moment, the agency has been directed to get back the facilities when contracts expire so that it can use them. It is because of the contractual obligations that we continue to see the sheds used by private companies.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwenya (Nkana): Mr Speaker, of the 290,000 tonnes of maize exported, could the hon. Minister inform the House how much profit was realised.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, I would need to get the details as I cannot give the figure off-the-cuff.

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Speaker: Order! Hon. Members, even at this late hour, I still have an opportunity to guide the House or some hon. Members of the House that ministerial statements are a very important component of parliamentary democracy as practised in this House. Beyond that, these statements assist the Executive to inform the people of Zambia, through this House. The statements through the follow-up questions that the hon. Members pose to a particular hon. Minister assist the Executive to account to this House and explain more clearly and in more detail how the Executive operates and why. This afternoon, some twenty supplementary questions have been asked and answered. Hon. Members who were identified to raise follow-up questions did, in fact, indicate that they wished to participate in this very serious policy exercise. However, if any hon. Member does not wish to be called upon to pose a question, the Chair guides that he/she does not indicate because doing so creates unnecessary acrimony or confusion. No hon. Member in this House enters into a discussion to embarrass anybody. That is not the issue. This is a very serious House, which functions in accordance with the authority of the people who brought each one of you here and expect you to serve them honourably and diligently.

I thank you.




488. Mr Lubinda (Kabwata) asked the Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources:

(a) How many statues of more than half a metre high existed in public places as of 31st December, 2010, countrywide;

(b) of the total statues, how many were of political leaders;

(c) how many statues at (b) were paid for by the State; and

(d) how many statues were in the following places:

(i) Chipata;
(ii) Lusaka;
(iii) Livingstone;
(iv) Kitwe; and
(v) Ndola.

Mr Deputy Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources (Mr Mwangala): Mr Speaker, the Government can only fully account for statues that are of national significance. However, there are other statues under local authorities and other institutions that may not be of national significance located in various towns countrywide. As at 31st December, 2010, the following were some of the statues:

(a) David Livingstone Statue at the Victoria Falls, in Livingstone;

(b) the Statue of David Livingstone at Livingstone International Airport, in Livingstone;

(c) the Statue of Susie and Chuma at the Livingstone International Airport in Livingstone;

(d) the Birth of African Union (AU) Statue at Mulungushi International Conference Centre, in Lusaka;

(e) the Statue of Frank Tayali at the University of Zambia, in Lusaka;

(f) the Freedom Statue, in Lusaka;

(g) the Statue of Lady Justice at the High Court, in Lusaka;

(h) the Statue of Mposa Mabwe, in Kitwe;

(i) the Statue of a woman holding a baby at the civic centre, in Luanshya;

(j) the Statue of the First Republican President, Dr Kenneth Kaunda, at the junction of the Blantyre and Independence roads opposite the Ndola High Court, in Ndola;

(k) the Statue of a woman with a baby on her back at the Chipata Municipal Council Civic Centre, in Chipata;

(l) the Statue of a man fighting a lion at the junction of the President Avenue and Blantyre Road, in Ndola; and

(m) the Statue of His Royal Highness Paramount Chief Mpezeni IV at the venue of the Nc’wala Traditional Ceremony in Mtenguleni Village, in Chipata.

Mr Speaker, of the thirteen statues, only one is of a political leader and this is the Statue of Dr Kenneth Kaunda, in Ndola. Further, of the thirteen statues, three were paid for by the State while the rest were donations.

The following are the names of the statues that were paid for by the State:

(a) The Lady Justice Statue;

(b) the Freedom Statue; and

(c) the African Union (AU) Statue.

Finally, Sir, the places in (d) have the following number of statues:

 Place No. of statues

Chipata 2
Lusaka 4
Livingstone 3
Kitwe 1
Ndola 2

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. MMD Members: Quality!

Mr Lubinda: Mr Speaker, given the fact that local authorities also commission statues to be erected within their jurisdictions, I would like to find out what programme this Government has ever put in place to ensure that there is a register of statues throughout the country. 

The Vice-President and Minister of Justice (Mr Kunda, SC.): Mr Speaker, as you can see from the very clear and comprehensive record which has been given, there is a register of the statues throughout the country.

I thank you, Sir.  


489. Mr Hamusonde (Nangoma) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing why the Government had failed to keep vendors off streets and shop corridors and confine them to designated trading places countrywide.  

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Muteteka): Mr Speaker, Government is developing a long-term solution to the problem of street vending. In the long-term, we intend to provide alternative trading points in selected areas for youths.

Additionally, we intend to designate some vacant council plots in the Central Business District where vendors can sell their goods in a more co-ordinated manner on specified days during a particular period of time. These trading points will be constructed in areas that will have waste disposal and sanitation facilities. 

Mr Speaker, it is important to note that solving the problem of street vending requires support from all stakeholders in terms of behavioural change to discourage the practice. A sensitisation campaign will be designed to secure buy-in from respective stakeholders.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Hamusonde: Mr Speaker, is the New Soweto Market fully occupied by traders?

The Minister of Local Government and Housing (Dr Chituwo): Mr Speaker, the New Soweto Market is not fully occupied. However, the occupancy varies from day to day.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kambwili (Roan): Mr Speaker, the Government directed the Lusaka City Council to release K2 billion to pay the police to remove street vendors from the streets but, within a short period of time, street vendors reappeared. Could the hon. Minister confirm that that was a futile exercise and a total waste of resources?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, the expenditure of K2 billion on that exercise was not a waste of time because the intended objective was achieved. However, due to the complex nature of interaction between the customers and street vendors, the situation is as it is today. This, therefore, calls for continuous dialogue and interaction between the local authorities and communities. This should be so because there are designated areas for trading in residential areas and the centre of the business district. However, the dynamics of the needs of clients necessitate continued sensitisation campaigns. This is why, through the Lusaka City Council, there are moves to that effect. It is unhealthy to encourage street vending, hence the need for us to create other designated areas within specific areas of the city for vending.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Dr Scott (Lusaka Central): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister, who is also referred to as part-time Mayor of Lusaka, said that there is a long-term solution in the works. However, there is also a very long-standing problem. What is the implication of a long-standing problem added to a long-term solution? When, exactly, will he find a solution, assuming that he will still be here to apply the solution?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member for Lusaka Central gave me a title which I do not hold.  He is definitely wrong.

Sir, the issue we are discussing at the moment is a very serious one and falls squarely in the lap of the city councils. The hon. Member of Parliament for Lusaka Central was, until a few weeks ago, participating in the deliberations of the council in order to try and assist Central Government deal with the issue of street vending. I presume he was participating in the council’s deliberations. So, he must be aware that, this being a long-standing problem, solving it piecemeal will not be long lasting, hence the need to look at all aspects of construction of markets as we have done in some locations.

Mr Speaker, street vendors are there because clients are there too. We need to interact with the clients so that they only purchase from designated areas for hygiene and safety purposes. Therefore, the two go hand in hand. There is a long standing problem that needs long-term planning. However, as we go along, we must find solutions to the existing issues.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}

Mrs Phiri (Munali): Mr Speaker, why is this Government not taking measures that Uganda has taken? Although that country is in a confused state, street vendors are trading in an orderly manner.


Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, the second part of the question was not clear. I do not know what the hon. Member of Parliament for Munali admires about the Ugandan situation. Recently, I was in Kampala and it is just like any other big city in Africa and the world over. Where there is rapid urbanisation, one finds the need to do business and, in all fairness, I think we are doing pretty well with regard to the aspect of trading.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr C. K. B. Banda, SC. (Chasefu): Mr Speaker, could the hon. Minister tell Zambians whether local authorities such as city, municipal and district councils, which are run by different political parties, have a role to play in ridding the streets of illegal vending.

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, I confirm that city, municipal and district councils have duties to perform, irrespective of dominance by a particular political party. That duty is to deliver quality services to the residents, including provision of safe and hygienic trading places. The Lusaka City Council is no exception.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamududu (Bweengwa): Mr Speaker, is the Government considering implementing a comprehensive policy on street vending to stop demonising this noble economic activity? This is because street vending in itself is not bad although clean places are needed.

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, there is everything wrong with street vending, especially when it is done in unhygienic and insecure places. That is why we are working with the Lusaka City Council to ensure that business is conducted in a safe, healthy and hygienic environment. It is also the reason there are plans to advise street vendors to utilise spaces that are available for this kind of business. Until we do that, it is illegal to conduct such business anywhere on the streets of our cities.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mulyata: Hear, hear!

Mrs Musokotwane (Katombola): Mr Speaker, why are councils made to pay so much money to the police when the police are part of the Government and are just doing their duty when they help remove vendors from the streets?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, such are special operations. As such, they attract extra costs. This is why councils expend such money in undertaking those projects.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Kawandami (Chifubu): Mr Speaker, in the evenings, the majority of the street vendors are women. Has the ministry got plans to reserve some places specifically for women to operate from safely?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, I hope we are discussing street vending.


Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, our answer was elaborate. We have identified the need for security for women, the youth and even men for that matter. This is why we are in strong partnership with our cities. In Lusaka, just like elsewhere, we shall identify specific streets, areas and times so that the vending can be done in those areas. These are areas where it will be easy to dispose of waste that will be generated and also provide sanitary conditions.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr C. Mulenga (Chinsali): Mr Speaker, in the programme of constructing markets, is the Government considering constructing big markets like City Market on all the outskirts of Lusaka; the northern, eastern and southern parts, to help decongest City Market which is making Lumumba Road almost impassable because of the traffic?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, we do have an urban market development programme not only for Soweto, but also Nyumba Yanga, Chelstone, and Nakadoli and Chisokone on the Copperbelt. This programme is ongoing. The plan is that these markets will be run on business lines and money realised from there would complement smaller municipalities and districts so that we continue to improve the development of markets.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Milupi (Luena): Mr Speaker, would the hon. Minister accept that the MMD’s economic policies over the last twenty years have turned this country into a nation of vendors. With that in mind, would the hon. Minister accept that as long as we have such low employment levels, the issue of street vendors will continue?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, the MMD Government has successfully responded to the needs of our people.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Question!

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, my colleague, the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives, read a ministerial statement here indicating that this Government is facilitating productivity and production. When you have increased production, it lends itself to market needs. Cities are dynamic economic entities. Therefore, what we see is that, early in the morning, people jostle to get farm produce of all sorts. This produce is farmed in peri-urban and rural areas. Consequently, one finds vending in the chain of commerce. This should not be looked upon as an undesirable thing because it is just an indication of the increased level of economic activity.

Mr Kambwili: Question!

Dr Chituwo: If there was no business, we would not have street vending. As we have stated, we will have this controlled so that the residents are able to get the produce in hygienic conditions. This, Sir, is a sector that must be encouraged because we do not have enough land in Kabwata to grow potatoes, tomatoes and so on. These must be produced elsewhere and, in the chain of doing business, somebody must have the duty of making these things available for buyers.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Machungwa (Luapula): Mr Speaker, the street vending problem seems to have become intractable in this country these days. Is the ministry willing to consider introducing by-laws that sanction people who buy from street vendors so that there is a push on both the consumer and the vendor?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker that is an innovative way of looking at solving this problem. The idea is very good but how do you police this? The policing of those who stop over for, maybe two minutes, to buy things is daunting. However, that is something that one can look at theoretically, although its practical implementation might be difficult. That is why we just target static vendors who are on the streets illegally.

I thank you, Sir.


490. Mr Ntundu (Gwembe) asked the Minister of Health:

(a) How many dialysis machines had been procured countrywide as of December, 2010;

(b) how many dialysis machines were operational; and

(c) how much money was spent on procuring the dialysis machines at the University Teaching Hospital (UTH).

The Deputy Minister of Health (Dr Kalila): Mr Speaker, as of December 2010, no dialysis machines had been procured countrywide. However, twelve dialysis machines were acquired. Ten of them were donated by the Japanese Government while two are on lease from Germany.

Mr Speaker, all the twelve dialysis machines are operational, including the five old ones that are also on lease from Germany.

No money was spent on procuring the dialysis machines at the UTH, Mr Speaker. Seven are on lease from Germany while ten were donated by the Japanese Government. The unit cost of the donated dialysis machines is US$25,000. The total cost for ten is US$250,000.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Ntundu: Mr Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. Minister for the good answer he has provided for the first time.

Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether, of the machines that have been donated, there are any that will be sent to Gwembe or other constituencies.

Dr Kalila: Mr Speaker, the Government realises the need to expand the provision of some of these specialised services to other parts of this country. There are plans to procure twelve dialysis machines for Livingstone and six for Ndola. This being a specialised service, it is hoped that the people of Gwembe will benefit from the machines that will be in Livingstone.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Kambwili: Sir, may I find out from the hon. Minister how many patients are referred to the UTH from other hospitals for the purpose of dialysis on a weekly basis, and whether the twelve machines at the hospital are adequate to cater for patients from the whole country.

Dr Kalila: Mr Speaker, the dialysis machines at the UTH are actually seventeen and not twelve. All of them are operational. Nevertheless, they are not adequate to cater for patients from the entire country. That is why we intend to scale-up by extending dialysis services to Ndola and Livingstone. I do not have the number of patients that are referred on a weekly or daily basis to the UTH. Suffice to say that more than 100 patients have been attended to so far this year.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwenya (Nkana): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has stated that there are seventeen dialysis machines. Could he indicate how these seventeen machines have been distributed across the country.

Mr Speaker: The hon. Member for Nkana did not listen to the hon. Minister’s answer.

Mr Hachipuka (Mbabala): Mr Speaker, could the hon. Minister indicate what arrangement or contract there is on the two machines that have been leased from the German Government or company.

Dr Kalila: Mr Speaker, I repeat that ten machines were donated from Japan and seven are on lease from a South African company, but are of German make. There are two ways in which to acquire laboratory equipment. One way is outright purchase, the other is leasing. The leasing is free of charge, but it is on the understanding that you will continue to buy the reagents from the company that has provided the machine so that it makes money from the reagents. This is the arrangement in effect concerning the machines at the UTH.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kakoma (Zambezi West): Mr Speaker, many people are failing to pay for dialysis services. May I find out from the hon. Minister what arrangements this Government has put in place at the UTH to ensure that all who need this service are catered for.

Dr Kalila: Mr Speaker, no doubt the cost of a session of dialysis is too high for our ordinary citizens to afford. The cost per session is about K400,000.  Patients on haemodialysis normally need three sessions a week while those with chronic renal failure, require the service for life. When you work out the cost, it is quite high. However, this Government is very sensitive to the plight of its citizens and has reduced the cost per session to K200,000, which is half the actual cost. Furthermore, we felt that the K200,000 was still too high and now charge K100,000. That is quarter the actual cost.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mushili (Ndola Central): Mr Speaker, would the hon. Minister indicate when the six dialysis machines meant for Ndola will be delivered. If it will take long, would the Government consider taking the four machines at Roan General Hospital where they are not being used to Ndola Central Hospital?

The Minister of Health (Mr Simbao): Mr Speaker, I need to tell the nation that this Government has in place a social workers’ office where people who are not able to pay can seek assistance for them to be exempted from paying. Not every patient is required to pay. The Social Office determines the inability of poor people to pay for health services. Those so designated are given services free of charge. The Government covers the expense. There are some people who access health services under this arrangement. Therefore, if there are people who genuinely have problems with paying for medical expenses, hon. members should tell them to go and see the social workers. They are at almost all hospitals, including the UTH.

Regarding the dialysis units, this is a very expensive service. The planning must be done well. That is why we are being cautious. We got the ten machines from Japan because they were a donation and thought we should not refuse the donation. However, as the situation is at the moment, it is proving very expensive to offer this service. That is why we need to be cautious before we extend the service to other areas, as important as it is.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


491. Mr C. Mulenga asked the Minister of Energy and Water Development:

(a) When the following places in Chinsali District would be electrified under the Rural Electrification Programme:

(i) Chief Mubanga’s Palace;
(ii) Chief Nkweto’s Palace;
(iii) Mundu Rural Health Centre;
(iv) Chunga Rural Health Centre; and 
(v) Mbesuma Ranch; and

(b) what the total cost of electrifying these places will be.

The Deputy Minister of Energy and Water Development (Mr Akakandelwa): Mr Speaker, Chief Mubanga’s and Chief Nkweto’s palaces were both electrified using solar home systems in July, 2005 and September, 2005, respectively. Additionally, the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) has planned that the solar home system installed at Chief Mubanga’s palace will be upgraded in 2011 while the long-term solution of extending the national grid is awaited.

In the Rural Electrification Master Plan currently being implemented by the authority, the remaining places are earmarked for electrification, starting in 2018 at an estimated cost of K11.7 billion. The delay is due to the need to set up new power infrastructure such as distribution lines and transformers which are not available at the moment. The K11.7 billion is the total cost of electrifying the remaining areas and any other additional rural growth centres along the power line routes.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr C. Mulenga: Mr Speaker, Mbesuma Ranch is a very serious programme the Government has embarked on. May I find out from the hon. Minister why …

Mr Kapeya: On a point of order, Sir

Mr Speaker: A point is raised.

Mr Kapeya: Mr Speaker, thank you very much for allowing me to raise a very important point of order. Zambia will be conducting a very important exercise any time this year of electing new leaders to propel the country forward. The exercise requires every eligible Zambian to register as a voter in order to participate in this year’s elections. Before the elections, registered voters are given a period in which to inspect the registers to ensure that all their particulars are correct.

Mr Speaker, it was reported in The Post Newspaper of Saturday, 11th June, 2011 as follows:

“Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) Register omits 1,000 voters at Lusaka City Council (LCC). Over 1,000 voters who registered at LCC Polling Station are not appearing in the register.”

 It continues on Page 4 to say:

“These voters not appearing in the register at the LCC did not manage to verify their details on their voters’ cards because their names were not and could not be found in the register. However, another National Registration Card (NRC) No. 999999/99/9 appeared under the 826 voters’ names.”

Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister of Home Affairs in order to remain mute on how the ECZ intends to correct the anomalies such as the new NRC number and how all those affected will confirm that all the corrections have been made and that they are eligible to take part in the elections this year? I need your serious ruling, Sir.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: The substance contained in the point of order by the hon. Member for Mpika Central is not new. It has been raised in this House before. The answer that was given by the relevant hon. Minister was that the particular number you cited was a temporary holding one and that when time came for the registered voters to verify the accuracy of their registration numbers, the individuals concerned would then have the opportunity of tendering their actual NRC numbers.


Mr Speaker: There has recently been an exercise for all registered voters to go and do just that. I hope all the hon. Members in this House have set a good example by doing so. I did it on the first day and can tell you that for the entire period I was at my registration centre, I was the only person who had his particulars verified. Even after doing so, I waited around to see whether there would be any more people coming, but none came in a period of twenty minutes. I could not stay longer than that.

It seems that the exercise is closed. I am not very sure whether the officers from the ECZ will accept that kind of identity on the voting day. Maybe, they will exercise what can be called their discretion, but I do not know. I hear there are calls to have the process reopened, but I have not heard any positive response from the ECZ. That is my serious ruling on this point of order.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: The hon. Member for Chinsali was making a follow-up question. May he continue.

Mr C. Mulenga: Mr Speaker, before I was interrupted, I was making a follow-up question on the Mbesuma Ranch which is a serious programme and very good for the nation. Will it wait until 2018 before it is supplied with electricity? May I find out from the hon. Minister whether this is a serious Government if it wants to wait until 2018 to supply electricity to such a very good project?

The Minister of Energy and Water Development (Mr Konga): Mr Speaker, as per current Rural Electrification Master Plan, Mbesuma Ranch will be electrified in 2018. That notwithstanding, if there will be other mitigating circumstances, this date can definitely be reconsidered. I believe nothing is cast in concrete.

I thank you, Sir.


492. Mr Mwenya asked the Minister of Home Affairs:

(a)  How many individuals were arrested for money laundering activities from 2006 to 2010, year by year;

(b)  of the total number arrested, how many were politicians; and

(c)  how many convictions were secured in the same period.

The Deputy Minister of Home Affairs (Mr Taima): Mr Speaker, the numbers of arrests for money laundering activities year by year are as follows:
 Year No. of Arrests

2006 149
2007 100
2008 19
 2009 41 
 2010 75

Mr Speaker, of the total number of 384 people arrested from the year 2006 to 2010, only two were politicians.

Mr Speaker, of the 384 arrests made from year 2006 to 2010, fifty-eight convictions were secured.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwenya: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the ministry the efforts being made to stop the Government’s use of the Money Laundering Act to intimidate or persecute perceived political opponents.

The Minister of Home Affairs (Mr Lungu): Mr Speaker, money laundering has nothing to do with political affiliations. We get all those that are involved in money laundering. Therefore, we do not use this Act to settle political scores.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Machungwa: Mr Speaker, from the figures read by the hon. Deputy Minister, I see that the number of arrests has been declining over the period that has been covered by the question. What would the hon. Minister attribute that to? Is it that we are now becoming more effective in law enforcement or would-be criminals are scared of being nabbed?

Mr Lungu: Mr Speaker, it could be both. Either we are getting the message across to the people involved in money laundering so that they get scared or we are also succeeding using other means. There could be other reasons that we may not be able to account for now.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr L. J. Mulenga (Kwacha): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister: were the two politicians that were involved in this money laundering convicted? If they were, where are they serving?

Mr Lungu: Mr Speaker, of the two involved, I must say, fortunately or unfortunately, that both are Members of Parliament and we are not allowed to discuss ourselves, so I do not know whether I should go ahead to reveal their names. However, since the information was in the public domain, maybe you will allow me to say just very briefly that one of them was convicted and served a sentence in terms of community service. He did some sweeping.


Mr Lungu: The other one, although I do not like discussing individuals, so I will not name them…

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours.
[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

Mr Speaker: When I suspended business, the hon. House was considering Question No. 492 and the hon. Minister of Home Affairs had just concluded answering a supplementary question asked by the hon. Member for Kwacha, but I noticed the hon. Member for Nchanga also wanted to ask a supplementary question. May he continue.

Mr Mwenya (Nchanga): Mr Speaker, out of the total figure that he gave of 285 arrests only fifty-eight convictions were secured. I wish to find out why there was such a low success rate.

Mr Lungu: Mr Speaker, when you talk of convictions, these are done at the courts. Therefore, I would not be in a position to tell why we have that number of convicts because that is the responsibility of the other arm of Government.

I thank you, Sir.


493. Mr Simama (Kalulushi) asked the Minister of Science, Technology and Vocational Training what the role of the Ministry in mitigating the effects of climate change was.

The Minister of Science, Technology and Vocational Training (Mr Daka): Mr Speaker, the role of the ministry of Science, Technology and Vocational Training in mitigating the effects of climate change is that of providing solutions through research and development. The ministry through its Research and Development Division is in the process of developing technologies that are meant to ameliorate the impact of climate change not only in Zambia, but the world at large since climate change has no boundaries.

In addition, through data collection and interpretation, the ministry will interpret historic occurrences and project future trends in climate change. This will in turn, provide adaptation strategies for mitigating the effect of climate change.

Currently, the ministry is spearheading the establishment of the Southern Africa Science Services Centre on Climate Change and Adapted Land Management (SASSCAL), in five of the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) countries, namely, Angola, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia. This is being done in partnership with the German Government as the main sponsor. The overall objectives of the SASSCAL initiative are to conduct research on drivers and trends of climate and land use change and their impact on fresh water and land resources; to support capacity development both in terms of human and infrastructure to improve the ability of the region, and to provide services and robust scientific support to stakeholders.

Once these regional centres are established, it is envisaged that the key stakeholders involved in climate change activities will be able to conduct research and have both their infrastructural and human capacity upgraded.

The ministry also participates in the SADC Climate Change Programme that is currently in the process of developing a framework for research on climate change in the region. This initiative is also aimed at supplementing the efforts of ministries of Environment in the SADC region.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Simama: Mr Speaker, I am satisfied with the hon. Minister’s response.

Dr Scott: Mr Speaker, throughout the hon. Minister’s answer, everything was very general, abstracted and theoretical. Could he give us one example of a practical measure that is being pursued to mitigate the effects of climate change that we can put our teeth to.

Mr Daka: Mr Speaker, at Mount Makulu Research Station, under the National Institute for Scientific and Industrial Research (NISIR), we have several practical situations. I cannot pinpoint one in particular, but there are several of them.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}


496. Mr D. Mwila (Chipili) asked the Minister of Education which areas in Chipili Parliamentary Constituency have been identified for construction of basic schools in 2011.

The Deputy Minister of Education (Dr Kawimbe): Mr Speaker, the ministry does not have any basic schools ear-marked for construction in Chipili Parliamentary Constituency for 2011.

I thank you, Sir.


497. Colonel Chanda (Kanyama) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a) when the construction of the ring roads around the City of Lusaka would commence; and

(b) what has caused the delay in commencing the project.

Mr Muteteka: Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that the construction of the ring roads has been programmed to start in the year 2012.

Mr Speaker, the ring roads will be constructed with support of the Japanese Government under the Japanese International Co-operation Agency (JICA). This support requires a number of approval steps to be followed in the Japanese Parliament before final approval is granted. In addition, the complex nature of this project requires relocation of utilities and people whose settlements lie in the project area. Further, preliminary work such as the Environmental Impact Assessment and design of the resettlement action plan will have to be done and implemented prior to the commencement of civil works. These activities require a lot of consultations and negotiations with the affected stakeholders. The time-frame is determined by the completion of the clearances requested by the donors.

I thank you, Sir.
Mr Speaker: I will ask those who are consulting to do so quietly.

Colonel Chanda: Mr Speaker, the consultation for the construction of the ring roads was completed in 2009. Does the hon. Minister know how much inconvenience the non-completion of this project has caused to the city by way of congestion of traffic? Is it something to do with the cost element? What is causing the delay in implementing this project?

 Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, the ministry is aware of the inconvenience caused to motorists due to the traffic jams. There was a discussion held with regard to the Master Plan for the construction of ring roads in Lusaka City. This being a sensitive issue, there were some serious objections from Chibolya area in Lusaka West where this ring road will pass. Consequently, this sensitive Government had to take on board all the stakeholders’ interests. That is the reason for the delay.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kapeya (Mpika Central): Mr Speaker, the ring road will pass through Kanyama. Which other places will it pass through around Lusaka?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, there are two ring roads to be constructed according to the plan. The inner one, which we have been talking about, will pass through Kanyama, light industrial area, Matero and then join the Zanimuone Road. These are densely populated areas and, therefore, there is need for us to engage all the stakeholders.

Thank you, Sir.

Mr Msichili (Kabushi): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister says that the Japanese Government requires a number of approval steps to be followed before the final approval is granted. In view of the recent Tsunami, the Japanese Government might decide not to release any money until they look at their own affairs. Does Government have any plans to ensure that this programme goes ahead with or without Japan’s help?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, in the unlikely event that the Japanese Government is unable to honour its commitments to this project, the ministry will come back to the House to appropriate money to the project as it is normally done in each financial year.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Misapa (Mporokoso): Mr Speaker, now that the plan for the ring roads is known, how many households will be negatively affected by construction works?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, the question is too general. I will provide a comprehensive answer if the question can be put more clearly.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwenya: Mr Speaker, which other towns are going to benefit from the JICA programme since Kitwe residents are also desperately in need of ring roads?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, the question was about construction of ring roads in Lusaka.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Zulu (Bwana Mkubwa): Sir, congestion is not a problem peculiar to Zambia. Why does the Government not consider designing and constructing filter lanes at every cross or T-junction so that vehicles turning left can do so without being affected by traffic to other areas?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, useful as that suggestion might be, it is important to look at the master plan. I am sure it is comprehensive enough to take into account the various aspects that cause traffic congestion.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Machungwa: Mr Speaker, with the heavy congestion in Lusaka, can the hon. Minister explain why it has taken four months to do a simple intersection at the Levy Junction and construction is going on for months and months?

Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, the construction at the Levy Business Park is still ongoing. Therefore, we will continue to have the diversion in place. I am sure everything possible is being done to ensure that the work is completed as soon as possible so as to allow for normal traffic to flow.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Scott: Mr Speaker, in his debate about parallel voter tabulation, the hon. Minister pointed out several times that it is illegal to announce the result of an election before the Electoral Commission of Zambia has done so. However, in answering the question about Japanese aid disappearing, the hon. Minister said he would come back to this House and present a budget after the elections. Has he not implicitly broken the law of the Elections Act by announcing the results of the election?


Mr Speaker: Actually, that observation should have come in the form of a point of order, but I will still guide, anyway. There shall always be an hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing. People come and people go, but the positions remain.

I thank you.



Dr Machungwa (Luapula): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the House do adopt the Report of the Committee on National Security and Foreign Affairs for the Fifth Session of the Tenth National Assembly laid on the Table of the House on 30th May, 2011.

Mr Speaker: Is the Motion seconded?

Mr Kamondo (Mufumbwe): Mr Speaker, I beg to second the Motion.

Dr Machungwa: Mr Speaker, based on your Committee’s terms of reference, it investigated the following issues among other things:

 1. Economic diplomacy with Asian countries; and

 2. drug trafficking: the involvement of women.

Sir, presuming that hon. Members have acquainted themselves with the contents of your Committee’s report, I will only highlight a few salient issues.

Mr Speaker, your Committee recognises that Asia is one of the regions of the world growing at a rapid pace economically and world economies are competing to woo investors from the region into their countries to enhance economic development.

Sir, your Committee further recognises that in order to have effective economic diplomacy with the Asian countries, Zambia’s missions in Asian countries need to adequately market the country to attract foreign direct investment (FDI).

However, Mr Speaker, your Committee sadly notes that, despite the missions abroad having the critical responsibility of marketing Zambia, the budgetary allocations for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is not sufficient for the work to be done effectively.

Sir, your Committee observes that our missions do not have adequate competent staff in terms of economic, education, defence and tourism attaches who can efficiently and effectively market Zambia for FDI. Thus, we have a situation in which there is heavy reliance on the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) to provide information on potential investment opportunities in our country to the missions abroad.

Sir, your Committee therefore, urges the Government to ensure that adequate budgetary allocations are given to the missions for them to showcase investment opportunities that exist in Zambia.

Mr Speaker, your Committee strongly recommends that the Government scales up staffing levels in the missions by drawing qualified manpower from relevant key sectors such as commerce, tourism, finance and economic development instead of appointing people based on their political loyalty as has been the case sometimes in the past.

Mr Speaker, your Committee notes with displeasure that the development of print and electronic materials for trade and investment promotion is hampered by the lack of adequate resources in the missions. Such materials empower the missions with sufficient information to pass on to potential investors.

On a positive note, Mr Speaker, your Committee is pleased that the High Commission in New Delhi, India, produces a magazine showcasing investment opportunities in Zambia. The magazine also captures issues relating to diplomacy and tourism and serves as a platform for bridging the information gap between Zambia and other countries. The first secretary responsible for press at the mission in India deserves commendation for this initiative which is doing an excellent job of adequately protecting Zambia’s image and promoting investment and tourism in the country.

Sir, your Committee would appreciate the country’s other missions’ emulation of the mission in India.

Mr Speaker, your Committee also looked at the issue of drug trafficking involving our womenfolk. Sir, your Committee observes that there has been an upsurge in the number of Zambian women trafficking in drugs from Asian countries. This is very disturbing because the country’s image is being dented by this very negative trend.

Mr Speaker, your Committee is of the opinion that the country’s foreign missions should continue liaising with the drug enforcement authorities as it has been noted that some drug couriers are lured to other countries under the pretext of being offered employment. Others still are asked to carry parcels whose contents they do not know and end up trafficking in drugs.

Your Committee, Sir, recommends that Zambian missions abroad should endeavour to check the authenticity of foreign companies placing media advertisements in Zambia offering jobs abroad.

Mr Speaker, your Committee notes that the increase in the number of women being involved in drug trafficking may also represent a shift in the medium of transportation of illicit substances. Women have in the past been less likely to be involved in crime and, therefore, less likely to be suspected.

Mr Speaker, your Committee also notes that the detection of concealed drugs has usually been difficult as the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) in Zambia does not have specialised equipment to do their job effectively. Your Committee, therefore, recommends that the Government increases funding to DEC for it to acquire appropriate equipment, train officers and sniffer dogs in relevant skills and for the general motivation of officers.

Sir, your Committee further recommends that there be a deliberate policy by the Government to attach DEC officials to some critical embassies, especially in countries like the Republic of South Africa, Nigeria, India, Kenya, Brazil, China and the United Kingdom (UK), to facilitate easy coordination on matters related to drug trafficking, and for timely exchange of intelligence.

Mr Speaker, your Committee strongly implores the Government to intensify its sensitisation programme on drug trafficking and warning Zambians citizens on its consequences. In particular, greater effort should be dedicated to warning citizens, especially women, to desist from going abroad to obtain employment on the basis of unverified advertisements in the electronic and print media as well as other sources.

Sir, allow me to conclude by thanking the various chief executives, permanent secretaries and the officers at the Zambian Mission in New Delhi who assisted your Committee in its work. We also wish to thank the Office of the Clerk of the National Assembly for support rendered to your Committee during deliberations.

Finally, your Committee wishes to record its indebtedness to you Sir, for your guidance during the session.

Mr Speaker, I beg to move.

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

Mr Kamondo: Now, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker, in seconding the Motion to adopt the Report of the Committee on National Security and Foreign Affairs for the Fifth Session of the Tenth National Assembly laid on the Table of this House on the 30th May, 2011, I first thank the Chairperson for moving it very ably.

Sir, the Chairperson has already pointed out the salient issues that caught the attention of your Committee during its deliberations. Therefore, I will not spend much time on them.

Mr Speaker, as part of its itinerary, your Committee had the opportunity to tour New Delhi in India. The objective was to ascertain the extent to which the Zambian Mission in New Delhi was marketing Zambia for foreign direct investment and measures the mission had implemented to tackle drug trafficking particularly that involving Zambian women.

Sir, during its tour, your Committee learnt that India was offering support to African countries in their research and development efforts to enhance agricultural education, science and research, and was providing twenty-five PhD and fifty masters scholarships to Indian universities and institutions under the India/Africa Forum Summit (IAFS) Action Plan.

Mr Speaker, your Committee observed, however, that the Government of Zambia only utilised three of ten scholarships offered in the field of agriculture, meaning that, Zambia is losing out on the full benefits of this opportunity. Your Committee implores the Government to facilitate the full uptake of these scholarships by Zambians.

Sir, your Committee further observes that there is great potential for trade between Zambia and India. Your Committee was informed that India was poised to become one of the world’s largest consumers of cotton, grains and tobacco. Your Committee, therefore, urges the Zambian Government to guide the country, which has been endowed with vast land and good climate, in developing the agricultural sector and penetrating the Indian market.

Mr Speaker, your Committee was also informed that in order to enhance co-ordination in combating illicit trade in narcotic and psychotropic substances, and money laundering between India and Zambia, a mutual agreement was signed in 1993. This agreement identified the Narcotics Control Bureau of India and DEC as key partners who are expected to exchange intelligence and share legislative and enforcement practices.

Sir, your Committee regrets to note that the agreement has not yet been fully implemented. The Indian authorities cited an example of an incident in when an Indian woman was arrested upon arrival at the Lusaka International Airport, but DEC did not inform their Indian counterparts of the arrest or the outcome of the case. Your Committee, strongly urges the DEC to collaborate with their counterparts in India.

Mr Speaker, another issue of concern to your Committee was the Government’s response in the Action Taken Report on the rehabilitation of infrastructure at the Kamfinsa School of Public Order and Maintenance. Your Committee took note of the state of dilapidation of the infrastructure and strongly urge the Government to expedite the rehabilitation and renovation of the school.

Mr Speak, may I conclude by paying tribute to your Committee for the manner in which it conducted its deliberations and observed the views of all the witnesses who appeared before it. Your Committee did so in the spirit and manner that helped it make recommendations that are, in its view, in the best interest of the people of Zambia.

Mr Speaker, I beg to move.

Mr L. J. Mulenga (Kwacha): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the Motion. I wish to make a few remarks even as I support the Motion.

Mr Speaker, I let me begin my debate by talking about economic diplomacy. Economic diplomacy is very important for a growing economy like Zambia’s. Much as God has blessed us with abundant natural resources, we lack one of the three factors of production-cash. Therefore, it is important that we attract the FDI into this economy for it to grow to levels our people will appreciate. Our country is dependant on all countries that can bring in the much needed FDI.

Mr Speaker, the issue of economic diplomacy, therefore, is very crucial. It is important for us politicians to be mindful of what we say about other countries. We must understand that we are not the only country to which these countries can take their resources.

Good diplomatic relations with other countries are, therefore, very important.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr L. J. Mulenga: We must appreciate the fact that without these countries, the economic growth that we now see about would not be there.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr L. J. Mulenga: It is, therefore, critical for us to be very careful with our statements about countries that bring in the FDI.

Mr Speaker, careless statements made by leaders can actually take countries to war. This is why our national security stands to be at risk if we do not watch what we say about other countries. My appeal to the leaders of this country is that, for the sake of this country, they should keep quiet whenever they have nothing constructive to say about other countries.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr L. J. Mulenga: Mr Speaker, we have only one country, Zambia. There is none other apart from this one.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr L. J. Mulenga: Therefore, we need to take care of it because, if we set it fire, all of us, our children and grandchildren will be affected. It is very important that, in whatever we say and do, we put Zambia first.

Ms Cifire: Hear, hear!

Mr L. J. Mulenga: If we destroy our country at this stage, we will pass on the destruction to future generations. We need to be responsible for the sake of future generations to which we need to hold ourselves accountable in whatever we do.

Mr L. J. Mulenga: Mr Speaker, it is important that we are responsible for all the decisions that we make because, one day, posterity will judge us.

Mr Speaker, may I end my strong support for this Motion with these few words.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamududu (Bweengwa): Mr Speaker, I agree with your Committee that the thrust of diplomacy has shifted, by and large over the years, from political to economic diplomacy. I wish to belabour this point in supporting the Motion.

Mr Speaker, let me give a few examples in this shift before I come to the main issues that were raised by your Committee.

Mr Speaker, the older generation of this country has played a positive role in the area of political diplomacy and we must not forget the achievements of this country in that area in the region and beyond.

Mr Speaker, we are proud of the role your generation played in the liberation of Southern Africa. Your diplomacy achieved positive results upon which we must build. Today, when we go to neighbouring countries like South Africa, Zimbabwe, Angola, Mozambique, and Namibia, we can move with our heads high because of your generation’s positive contribution to the region. Zambia must not forget the mark it made in this area. Before I leave this point, I want to point out that Resolution 435, which led to the independence of Namibia, was tabled by your generation at the United Nations (UN). There are many examples I can cite, but I would like to move on. Mr Speaker, I now wish to get back to issues raised by your Committee on economic diplomacy.

In the past few years, the economic diplomacy we have talked about has only been on paper. Zambia has not really learnt from its earlier achievements how to succeed on this aspect. I have heard the hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs and some ambassadors talk about economic diplomacy on paper. There have been no tangible results to talk about. We have a lot to do in the area of economic diplomacy because we need it in the global village.

Mr Speaker, I thank you for facilitating a tour for myself and the hon. Member for Chipangali, to visit India for one week. We traversed the country after your Committee on National Security and Foreign Affairs returned. We went to New Delhi, Pune and Mumbai.

Mr Speaker, India is a very special case in our country’s diplomatic relations. We learnt many lessons that enable me to agree with what the Committee said. India is a very good example for us to take a leaf from. I will give four examples of what economic diplomacy can do.
Mr Speaker, the manpower in the missions abroad must be attuned to the achievement of these objectives. The attaches sent their must be specialised to achieve sustain positive economic relations. Therefore, the selection of people to work in these embassies must be carefully done so that we put the right people there.

Mr Speaker, your generation took the right people to foreign missions. I count among them, Hon. V. J. Mwaanga, the current President, Mr Rupiah Bwezani Banda, and yourself. You were the cream of diplomats.

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Hamududu: History cannot be argued with. Records are there. This country must learn from the gains and move forward.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamududu: This is what was achieved at the time and there are no names we can erase who contributed to that cause. 

Mr Speaker, unfortunately this Government is failing in economic diplomacy and I want to give it the panacea. One reason this is happening is that the Government sends cadres, who may not have the requisite qualifications, as attaches to drive this agenda in foreign missions.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamududu: Our foreign missions must be staffed by people who know what they are doing, and are trained and specialised to achieve this economic diplomacy. The current peactice of picking political cadres to these missions will not be helpful in this cause.
I think the approach we took during the political diplomacy of sending specialised people must be applied today. We must not send people who will just go to drink tea and attend cocktail parties. They should be people who will be there for serious business for our country. Let me give examples.

In the area of road infrastructure, the Committee members were privileged to travel by road to Pune, India, where the Tata Headquarters are. We observed that the road infrastructure was very good. My colleague, Hon. Vincent Mwale, other promising young Parliamentarians from Africa and I, having been invited by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, also travelled to Mumbai by road. We discovered that most roads were either on a private-public partnership (PPP) or build operate and transfer (BOT) programmes. In this case, the private sector builds the roads on which they place toll gates.

I cannot be told that a person who can afford to buy and maintain a car can fail to pay a toll gate fee. That is being petty. The sustainable way of maintaining our roads is the involvement of the private sector.

Today, one can talk about the high prices of copper, and of the windfall tax being able to sustain the road sector, but how do we know whether copper prices will continue to be high?

My colleagues and I went to Agra to see the Taj Mahal and found toll gates and roads well maintained by the private sector everywhere. The private sector recovers its money and later hands over the roads to the government. We should not be showing our people the easy way out. All of us here know that the people want to see real solutions for long-term prosperity.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamududu: The time for petty politics in this House should come to an end from both sides. Some of the people who vote for us and on whose courtesy we sit here are not even members of political parties. We must respect them. They want real issues.

Mr Chazangwe: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamududu: On the issue of toll gates, we can engage the private sector to put up toll gates and build our roads. Our people can pay the nominal gate fees.

Mr Speaker, India has good roads today because of this approach. We should not cheat our people in the compounds that it is not possible to pay tolls. That is being reactionary and retrogressive. This is one lesson.

Mr Muyanda: Yes!

Mr Hamududu: Allow me, Sir, to move onto the next point, BOT, a programme that must be tried in this country because it is working elsewhere.

If you go to South Africa today, you will see toll gates everywhere. This is the most sustainable way to maintain our infrastructure.

Hon. UPND Member: That is very true!

Mr Hamududu: Hon. Members must know that we might not have money in the Treasury forever.

Sir, my next point is on street vending. We have just been discussing how it is done in India and other countries. For this reason, I would like to urge our people in embassies abroad to bring lessons of best practices on street vending to our country so that we learn from them.

The discussion on street vending in other countries was very interesting. Street vending is not a crime. It must be legalised. How can a person who works for the Bank of Zambia walk all the way to Shoprite to buy a banana? Why, when there can be a numbered stand where a lady can sit under an umbrella selling bananas? One can easily buy a banana from such a vendor and go back to work in the bank. Why should one go to Shoprite or Spar, at Arcades, when they can buy from a lady in her nice stand on the street? That is why we are failing in this country.

Sir, thank you for sending me to Botswana on a capacity building programme.

Ms Cifire: Walilwisha!

Mr Hamududu: No, I was invited and Mr Speaker allowed me to go.

The colleagues I met in Botswana have very high respect for parliamentarians from this country because we represent you very well when we are out there, especially myself. One of the lessons learnt on economic diplomacy from other countries is that our embassies abroad can bring ideas on street vending. The streets can be paved and numbered. There is nothing wrong about having a few women sitting along the streets selling bananas and cabbage.

Ms Kawandami: Yes!

Mr Hamududu: The failure to do this is what is causing us to take all opportunities to supermarkets like Spar and Shoprite while a Zambian cannot sell his or her tomatoes, bananas or cabbages.

Mr Speaker, Lumumba Street can be transformed into a street for vending, like what I saw in India.

Mr Lubinda: On a point of order.

Mr Speaker: Order!

I am listening very carefully and I do not detect any aspect of the hon. Member’s debate that is out of order. Is there something else?

Mr Lubinda: Yes!

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Lubinda: Mr Speaker, thank you for allowing me to raise this point of order and, indeed, it has to do with the debate of the Chairperson of the Committee to which I belong. As much as he is speaking eloquently on these matters, is he in order to veer away from the report that has been very ably moved by the Chairperson of the Committee and seconded by my colleague and start to confuse economic diplomacy with street vending and toll gates and so on? Is he in order, Sir? Would he not rather stick to the content of the report and concentrate on what economic diplomacy means?

Mr Speaker: The hon. Member of Parliament for Kabwata is a member of the Committee on Estimates, but this report deals with National Security and Foreign Affairs. So far, from what I have heard, the hon. Member has been connecting his experience arising from those visits with economic diplomacy. So, he is in order.

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

Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, what I am trying to say is that our diplomats must bring the best practices from other countries so that we learn and begin to benefit from each other. Therefore, their job in economic diplomacy is to pass on the lessons on other practices here so that we can learn. Other countries can also learn from the best practices we have in Zambia.

Mr Speaker, the issue of street vending is one such aspect where our embassies abroad can help us. For example, we can learn from them what is happening in India and other countries. From lessons learnt, Lumumba Road can be turned into a street vending area. What is lacking there is the paving of the road. If proper drainages are built, it would be easy to clean. Stands would be allocated bins and numbers and the money that would be collected from the stands would go to cleaning the street. The council would not abuse the money because it would be used for waste disposal. Further, the rates that people would pay would be commensurate with the services they would get.

Lumumba Road is a wonderful place for street vending. Our people can sit and sell their items there. Zambian street vendors must have a living, albeit in an orderly arrangement. We should stop demonising this activity and being reactionary about it.

In Accra, Ghana, there is street vending. The task of our embassy there is to teach us how it is done there. The streets are well-paved so that a customer can sit as he or she awaits his or her change from the vendor.

Mr Speaker, the other issue in the area of economic diplomacy that we can learn from other countries, especially India, is the issue of home-grown development. During the global financial crisis, India and China were not highly affected because their development is home-grown and rooted among the people.

The development that we, as a country, are championing now where we depend so much on foreign investment is always sensitive to external events like what happened the last time we had the financial crisis. Development must be rooted among our people. That is what India is doing.

Mr Speaker, we were also privileged to visit the National Planning Ministry of India. It is wonderful. The planning is rooted in the people in rural areas. There is what they now call Rural Economic Planning. The rural people say what they want and the ministry of finance captures it and funds it. I can give you an example we can learn from.

Mr D. Mwila: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamududu: For comparison’s sake, when I went to Luena for campaigns, I saw wonderful plains with mangoes growing in the bush and the terrain is good for mango plantations. In that area, you can easily have a juice factory to produce one of the best mango juices in the world. The people of Luena Plains can have orchards for the right mangoes as tasty mangoes are just growing in the bush. We need to link these issues to the reality on the ground. The approach the National Planning Ministry of India is using is that the ideas for planning emanate from specific regions.

In this country, we have been telling this Government, for example, that the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) has a generalised approach. That is wrong. Basically, the FISP is about maize seed and fertiliser. That is not right. Not everyone must grow maize. After all, we fail to even market the maize. Some people want to be making mango juice and others want to grow rice or cassava. The programme must address the realities on the ground. That is real economics. Our development must be rooted in the people. Only then will it be sustainable. For an economy like this one which is driven by copper, we must use the copper revenue to diversify. We all know that minerals are a wasting asset and very soon they will finish or something may happen to push prices down. This could give us many problems.

Mr Speaker, we should also invest in the economies of our people in Luena, Kaputa, Siavonga, Chama, and Shang’ombo so that this economy is sustainable.

Finally, Sir, people in embassies driving this diplomacy must be aggressive in marketing our products to other countries. The emphasis must be on markets for our products, and not just to bring foreign investment in this country. Foreign investments benefit the countries of the investors. We must change the direction of the pendulum. We want a market for our beef, goats, cashew nuts and other products because there are markets all over. Diplomats must look for markets so that people can begin to export.

Mr Speaker, without exports, our economy can never grow because we are recycling money. The successful economies of Asia, South Korea, Taiwan and others are export driven. Our thrust should be towards exporting, not bringing people to take advantage of our resources and finish them in the next few years.

One other thing we can learn from other countries, by taking advantage of this report, is that in key copper producing countries like Chile, there is no windfall tax and one of the biggest mines is owned by the Government.

Mr Speaker, working side by side with the private sector, we can run one of the mines and use it to set the standard because we would know what it takes to operate a mine. Even tax audits would be easier to conduct because there would be a mine in which there is full disclosure. Chile is doing that and so the idea of economic diplomacy is for us to get the best practices and apply them here. That and the issue of a market for our products must be important preoccupations for people in our missions abroad.

Mr Speaker, I was blessed to have lived in a country that is doing well economically for nine years. This was in Namibia where there is a very strong export drive. There is a lucrative market for goats in the Arab world and we expect our diplomats to tell us what type of standard is needed for our goats to be sold in the Middle East. Namibia is exporting many goats and our potential to rear goats cannot be matched by that of the desert countries of Namibia and Botswana.

Mr Speaker, our diversification must be real. The lessons from your Committee are valuable and I hope the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will take the necessary steps to enhance our ability to benefit fully from economic diplomacy.

In ending my debate, Mr Speaker, may I say that we need the right people in the embassies to drive the economic diplomacy like we did during the political diplomacy where we achieved results. We need seasoned specialised attachés whose job must not be reduced to receiving people at the airports, and attending cocktail parties and drinking tea and wine. They must produce results. Their performance should be measured solely on this aspect.

Mr Speaker, we must fully exploit the opportunities that exist in India, China and elsewhere so that our country begins to grow.

Mr Speaker, with these few words, I support the report of your Committee.

I thank you, Sir.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs (Mr Pande): Mr Speaker, I wish to support the Report of the Committee on National Security and Foreign Affairs. I must admit that it is one of the best written reports presented to this House and so I commend your Committee for a job well done.

Dr Machungwa: Hear, hear!

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, I would like to make a few comments on some issues raised by your Committee. One of the issues is the recognition of the importance of economic diplomacy, particularly with Asian countries.

Your Committee laments the inadequate funding to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This concern is appreciated. However, it is important to note that your Committee’s report has come out clearly that despite the alleged inadequate funding, the missions, closely networking with other relevant organs of the Government such as the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry and the Zambia Development Agency, have worked hard to win from Asian countries investment pledges totalling US$7.6 billion between 2007 and 2010. Out of this pledge, the ZDA approved projects worth US$2.4 billion as at September, 2010.

Mr Speaker, this clearly shows that there are many ways of skinning a cat. Despite having few resources, the Government has found ways of achieving economic diplomacy.

Mr Speaker, the other issue I wish to comment on is the need to appoint competent staff in missions abroad in order to capacitate them. It is the wish of this Government to have competent staff appointed. We are determined to retrain some of the untrained staff. At the moment, we are working closely with relevant ministries such as the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry for the appointment of trade attachés, accountants from the Ministry of Finance and National Planning and tourism attachés from the Ministry of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources.

On the issue of promotion materials, as a ministry, we depend on relevant ministries such as the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry, and Ministry of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources. Some missions, such as the one in India, as already noted by your Committee, have been producing brochures.

Mr Speaker, this has been emulated by other missions like Canada which has also started producing such publications. Germany will soon follow suit and we are encouraging other missions to get on board with the programme.

Mr Speaker, on individual contributions to the debate, I would like to commend the debate by the hon. Member for Kwacha (Mr L. J. Mulenga) when he said it is extremely important to guard what we say about some countries that we expert to bring foreign direct investment (FDI) into our country. There is, indeed, competition for FDIs. We should differentiate between politics and issues of national interest. Let us not marginalise our Zambia, but rather concentrate on issues that will benefit the country.

Mr Speaker, Hon. Hamududu talked about political diplomacy. Indeed, before we engage in economic diplomacy, the starting point is political diplomacy. We have to engage other countries politically and, after achieving that, we can go full thrust with economic diplomacy.

Mr Speaker, on the issue of drug trafficking, your Committee is pushing an open door in that there are advanced discussions between my ministry and the DEC to have officers stationed in various missions, some of which have been mentioned. At the moment, we are just trying to work out the implementation mechanism, in terms of conditions and who will be responsible for what.

Mr Speaker, regarding the sensitisation of Zambians, the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) has programmes to warn Zambians about the consequences of drug trafficking. As for economic diplomacy, we are trying, as much as possible, to have the right people in our foreign missions.

On political cadres being sent to foreign missions, I must say different positions are there for different purposes. Some are political in nature and, therefore, require political appointments.

With this these few remarks, I fully support the report and commend your Committee.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Dr Machungwa: Mr Speaker, thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to wind up debate on this Motion. I would like to thank hon. Members who have debated the report, that is the hon. Members of Parliament for Kwacha and Bweengwa and the hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs as well as the entire House for being very attentive and supportive of the report. I ask that it be adopted.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Question put and agreed to.




THE COMPANIES (Amendment) BILL, 2011

The Minister of Livestock and Fisheries Development (Mr Machila) (on behalf of the Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mr Mutati)):  Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the Bill be now read a second time.

Mr Speaker, I thank you for this opportunity to address this august House on the Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2011. I also wish to pay tribute to your Committee for its detailed scrutiny of the Bill and valuable observations and recommendations. The key objectives of the Bill are to:

(a) Simplify and thereby reduce the cost of incorporating a company and the cost associated with filing annual returns;

(b) enhance corporate governance and the control and regulation of receivers and liquidators;

(c) ensure timely conclusion of receiverships and liquidation processes;

(d) encourage the restructuring of companies placed in receivership and thereby salvaging them from collapse; and

(e) address gaps and grey areas in the Companies Act and thus ensure legal clarity and certainty.

Mr Speaker, let me focus my statement on the pertinent issues raised by your Committee in its report. With regard to your Committee’s concerns on the removal, under section 6, of the requirement for filing Articles of Association, we agree with that Articles of Association are an essential constitutive instrument of a company. Accordingly, the Government has not dispensed with this requirement. Consistent with the modern style of legislative drafting, the requirement for Articles of Association will now be provided for in subsidiary legislation.

As to the proposal that a qualification be added under the same section (6) to the effect that the ‘purpose’ for company incorporating is lawful, we find your Committee’s observation useful for legal clarity. The Government equally agrees with your Committee on the need to prescribe a timeframe within which a holder should notify the registrar, under section 57 (4) of a transfer of shares. Further, we consider it critical that the notification of the registrar should be preceded by necessary formalities within the company itself.

Mr Speaker, regarding how the registrar would disqualify a receiver from continuing to act as such under the proposed section 109B, hon. Members of Parliament may wish to know that this will essentially be by way of deregistration of such a receiver. The House will note that consistent with international best practice, it is proposed to introduce some form of accreditation or registration with the registrar for persons to be appointed receivers and liquidators, and that registration is essential for the following reasons:

(i) It enables the public to know whether a person is prohibited or restricted from acting as a receiver or liquidator;

(ii) it facilitates administrative, disciplinary and other functions under the Companies Act; and

(iii) it ensures only persons that are professionally regulated serve as liquidators or receivers.

Your Committee proposes to add a qualification under sections 111 (2) and 332 (2) to the effect that the hon. Minister should consult the registrar when identifying professions from which receivers and liquidators may be appointed. Let me assure the House that this is unnecessary as it is already standard practice in the Public Service as laid down in relevant Civil Service guidelines.

Mr Speaker, your Committee also proposed that remuneration for receivers and liquidators, respectively, under sections 111A and 346A (1), should be made from realised proceeds of the receivership or liquidation, as the case may be, as opposed to ‘company assets.’ The Government fully endorses this view. We consequently also agree with the proposal for an amendment to section 118A along similar lines.

Mr Speaker, a cap or ceiling is proposed on the percentage of proceeds of the liquidation or receivership that should be payable to the receiver or liquidator. To expedite the conclusion of liquidation and receivership processes, timeframes within which particular actions are to be taken have also been proposed.

As for concerns over the magnitude of the penalty for failure to comply with the Act under section 189A, the Government is of the view that such a penalty is a necessary deterrent.

Mr Speaker, on the proposal to provide for an exception under section 208 for residential requirements for directors in joint ventures between the Zambian and other governments, we believe that even under some joint venture arrangements, a portion of the directors would have to be resident.

With regard to the recommendation that the amendment Bill stipulates that the external auditor, under section 218, would be drawn from a professional body, we consider that this is adequately covered by other laws that stipulate who qualifies to be an auditor.

Mr Speaker, we agree with the proposal to retain subsection (5) of section 244 to the effect that the register of directors and secretaries should be open to the public. However, as regards the proposal to add the qualification that the liquidator’s report under 288 (1) is a ‘preliminary’ one, we consider that its omission does not affect the substance of the law as the report will, in any case, be the first one.

Regarding the recommendation that punitive measures be provided for liquidators who fail to register with the registrar, the House might wish to note that, given that registration or accreditation would be a condition precedent to performing the functions of a liquidator, it follows that any person who does not register stands disqualified from acting as liquidator and would thus be committing an offence under the Act should the person so act.

Mr Speaker, may I also take this opportunity to inform the House that one other measure intended to reduce the cost of doing business is the introduction of a ‘No Change’ return. Contrary to the status quo where an annual returns form has to be completed even where there has been no change in company particulars, the Government is proposing a new feature whereby companies will merely notify the registrar, if there has been no change in particulars over the previous year. This measure will reduce the cost associated with consultancy services relating to completing and filing annual returns.

Mr Speaker, the Amendment Bill also seeks to address fraudulent incorporation of companies. Regrettably, a culture is emerging among some of our nationals of targeting internationally renowned companies that are contemplating entering the Zambian market and incorporating companies under their names with the ostensible objective of cashing in on them. In this regard, an amendment is proposed to broaden the grounds upon which a name may be rejected to include incorporations that are manifestly in bad faith. To foster transparency and accountability, on the other hand, it is further proposed to make it mandatory on the registrar to furnish an applicant with reasons for rejecting a name within seven days of the application. Measures are equally proposed to prevent fraudulent transfers of shares.

Mr Speaker, the Bill further seeks to address certain housekeeping measures, more so, in providing clarity in the law. A case in point concerns residential requirements for directors. Other provisions include the grounds upon which a receiver may vacate office. The fiduciary duties of directors have also been strengthened. In particular, it is proposed, under specified circumstances, to subject contracts in which directors have an interest, to external auditors. Other housekeeping measures include the means by which the registrar may serve notices and the reissuing of certificates.

Mr Speaker, in the spirit of consultative governance, the Government has accepted significant recommendations of your Committee. We consider the proposals progressive and value additing to the noble intentions of the law. I, therefore, urge this august House to accept this Bill with the amendments that I have outlined.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kakoma (Zambezi West): Mr Speaker, thank you for the opportunity to debate on the Companies (Amendment) Bill. As we have heard from the hon. Minister, he has accepted most of the amendments proposed by your Committee and I would like to commend him for that.

Mr Speaker, the Committee on Economic Affairs and Labour was tasked by this august House to examine the Bill in detail. In doing so, your Committee invited submissions from a number of witnesses, both from Government and the private sector.

Mr Speaker, the Bill, as the hon. Minister has stated, is intended to amend the Companies Act, Cap 388 of the Laws of Zambia. The Companies Act has a direct effect on most of us, as we, in one way or another, operate private companies. Some people may also have the experience of having run or worked for a company that was eventually placed under receivership or was liquidated.

The Companies Act has not been amended since 2000 and I am sure hon. Members will agree with me that the business world has changed considerably between 2000 and now. Therefore, this Bill is the first step in bringing the Act in line with current business practices.

Mr Speaker, the Bill seeks to amend the Companies Act in order to simplify the procedure for incorporating companies and also introduce new features aimed at:

(a) Curbing fraudulent activities related to incorporation of companies;

(b) curbing fraudulent activities in the transfer of shares;

(c) simplifying annual returns;

(d) regulating of receivers and liquidators;

(e) providing for residential requirements of directors; and

(f) providing for disclosure of conflict of interest by directors and third parties.

Mr Speaker, let me amplify some new features based on what your Committee found from their study of the Bill.

Fraud in Incorporating Companies

Mr Speaker, the amendments will extend the grounds on which the registrar can reject the registration of a company name. This is mainly intended to discourage people from registering company names with the sole purpose of cashing in on bigger companies operating under the same names or well known names as the Bill puts it, if the companies wish to commence operations in Zambia.

Some fraudulent people who have prior knowledge of well-known international companies planning to invest and operate in Zambia have been registering companies with the same well-known names in order to block the entry of the international companies into the Zambian market or force the international companies to handsomely pay off the owners of the locally-registered company to secure the use of the same name.

It has been observed that this predatory behaviour in the incorporation of companies is on the increase and the Government wants to halt it.

This is a progressive development. However, it is important to ensure that the registrar exercises this power in a very judicious manner to avoid inconveniencing well-meaning Zambians who may wish to register company names and are genuinely not aware of the existence of a well-known company using the name.

What is even more important is to be clear on how to handle cases where the name is already registered and the company is operational. Your Committee wishes to place it on record that the registrar should always only direct a local company to change its name if in the view of the registrar all other options to resolve the matter have been exhausted.

Simplified Annual Returns

Mr Speaker, filing of annual returns can be an onerous task to most businesses. Failure to do so can result in the company being deregistered. The introduction of the ‘No Change” return is a welcome development. This, however, is only applicable in situations in which there has been no change in any given particulars relating to the company such as names of directors and addresses. This return is different from the one for tax purposes that is submitted to the Zambian Revenue Authority (ZRA), as it does not require the accompaniment of any financial statements.

Regulating of Receivers and Liquidators

Mr Speaker, receiverships and liquidations in Zambia are mainly associated with the privatisation process. Most of us expected to see a boom in industry after the parastatal companies were privatised. However, what came were receiverships and liquidations. As I earlier mentioned, there may be Members of this House who have experiences with either a receivership or liquidation. The Government, after noting numerous complaints from the public, particularly workers, has decided to amend the Companies Act to ensure that receivers and liquidators are regulated in terms of their appointment, conduct and remuneration. There is an argument that this is coming too late as most of the parastatals have been privatised. However, as the saying goes, “better late than never.” Zambia is a developing country and some companies will be placed in receivership while others will undergo liquidation.

Your Committee, noted three major issues concerning liquidations as follows:

(i) Unrestricted time for liquidation processes
Going by the experiences of some of the former parastatals that are still, or were until recently under, liquidation, the general perception is that the process takes too long. In the end, it is only the liquidator who gets the benefit.

Your Committee has noted that it is quite difficult to determine a reasonable timeframe for concluding the liquidation or receivership process due to differences in size and complexity of the companies. Your Committee further notes the monitoring mechanisms that the Government is introducing which will be useful in speeding up the process. Your Committee, however, strongly feels that the law should prescribe a time limit. To this effect, your Committee is recommending that all liquidations be concluded within three years. If not, a liquidator should procure a court extension of the time.

(ii) Refund of excess fees collected
The amendments provide that if a receiver or liquidator collects more fees than was agreed, he should refund the excess. This provision is important in that, at the end of receivership or liquidation, accounts still have to be reconciled and unintentional over- payments or under-payments may be discovered.

To prevent the provision from being abused, your Committee recommends that punitive measures be introduced for any receiver or liquidator who deliberately over-pays him/herself in the hope of refunding later; and

(iii) Workers’ Interests
A very sensitive matter related to liquidation is workers’ interests. The current amendments do not touch on this matter. Although the Companies Act under Section 346 does highly rank workers’ benefits under preferential unsecured debts, in reality, this is not being observed. The Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry should ensure that the law is complied with, especially that, in case of liquidation, labour matters are determined by the Companies Act. Your Committee further hopes that the Government will review labour-related laws so that workers’ interests in liquidated companies are protected.

Lastly, Mr Speaker, your Committee observes that the Bill refers to penalty units in penal cases, whilst the Companies Act uses monetary units and recommends that this be harmonised because it can be a source of confusion in the future.

Mr Speaker, on behalf of your Committee, I wish to thank the Office of the Clerk and all witnesses for having made our work lighter. Your Committee appreciates the guidance and services that you rendered to it during the meetings.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa (Luapula): Mr Speaker, my contribution will be very brief.

I wish to commend the hon. Minister for bringing this Bill and also for accepting the proposals to amend the Bill that have been presented by the Chairperson of the Committee on Economic Affairs that reviewed this particular Bill. I must declare interest that I am a member of that Committee.

Mr Speaker, it is very important that the issue of time limits on the activities of the liquidators be taken into serious consideration. Early in the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) Government of the 1990s, there were many liquidations and receiverships that were introduced. Zambia Airways is one example. It started in the mid-1990s, but you may wish to know that it is ongoing as we speak. At one time, I served on a committee that looked at liquidations. We observed that the principal beneficiary, in many of these cases, were the liquidators and the receivers themselves. This was so because they kept paying themselves large sums of money and the process went endlessly on. As I have said, in the case of Zambia Airways, the process has not been completed to this day. Granted there are arguments that there have been litigations, and that this has made it difficult for the liquidator to make much progress. However, clearly, the process cannot go on indefinitely. This is why we are happy to note that the hon. Minister has accepted to consider putting time limits. We believe three years is adequate, and in the event that a liquidator has a reasonable excuse for failing to meet a deadline, they may obtain an extension from a court of law. This is important because what has happened in some of these liquidations is that liquidators have been the biggest beneficiaries instead of the creditors or workers.

Mr Speaker, the issue of workers’ interests is also very important. During the liquidation of many companies, workers were being paid a pittance. In some cases, they would receive two or three months pay for work they had done for the company over a long period. This is because the workers’ benefits were not considered to be among the preferred creditors. When we discussed these matters with some legal advisors, we were informed that as it is, the workers’ benefits are among the secured debts. However, in practice, what has been happening is that workers come off with very little. When we debated this matter, we were told that the Ministry of Labour and Social Security would bring some amendments to ensure that the workers’ interests were looked at. However, the current provision in the Employment Act simply states that workers’ interests will be treated according to the provisions of the Companies Act. Unfortunately, the Companies Act does not do much on this aspect. Therefore, it is our view and hope that when the reviews of the relevant pieces of legislation are done, workers’ interests will be looked at. It is extremely saddening to see workers who have given a service to a company for twenty to thirty years ending up with two or three months pay when the company goes in liquidation, with the rest of the money going to pay the liquidators or receivers.

Mr Speaker, in supporting this very progressive Bill, we hope that the hon. Minister will consider those issues very seriously.

I would like to thank you for the chance to contribute to this debate.

Mr Machila: Mr Speaker, I wish to thank hon. Members for their contribution to the debate on this Bill. I have noted the additional concerns and observations that have been made by hon. Members, in particular relating to the timeline for the conclusion of liquidation in reference to the Zambia Airways. Mr Speaker, in the absence of a law that specifically deals with insolvency matters, the applied provisions in the Companies Act as well as the common law will be used. Therefore, the Government assures this House that we shall continue to review the laws where necessary.

With these few remarks, I wish to thank the House for the support.

I thank you, Sir.

Question put and agreed to and the Bill read a second time.

Committed to a committee of the Whole House.

Committee on Thursday, 16th June, 2011.


The Minister of Finance and National Planning (Dr Musokotwane): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the Bill be now read a second time.

Mr Speaker, following the approval of the Supplementary Estimates of 2009 providing additional funds for carrying out essential services by the Government during the Financial Year 1st January to 31st December, 2009, I was directed to return to this House with the necessary legislation to give effect to the resolution of the House. The Bill before the House, therefore, is intended to normalise the supplementary funds amounting to K1, 114, 922, 859, 506.

Sir, as hon. Members may recall, the Supplementary Estimates No. 1 of 2009 was exhaustively debated. The Bill is just meant to regularise the approval already given by this House.

Mr Speaker, I beg to move.

Mr Hamududu (Bweengwa): Mr Speaker, the Supplementary Appropriation (2009) Bill, 2011, N. A. B No. 17 of 2011, which was presented to Parliament in line with Article 117(4) of the Constitution of the Republic of Zambia, was referred to your Committee for scrutiny. Arising from its deliberation, your Committee has made some observations and recommendations which I now highlight.

Sir, your Committee appreciates the need for supplementary expenditure. It is, however, concerned that some Controlling Officers spend unnecessarily more than what was approved during the financial year because there is no limit on the amount of money to be spent as supplementary expenditure. Your Committee recommends that there be a limit on the amount that can be spent by Controlling Officers above what was approved in the budget by Parliament. Your Committee is also concerned that some activities on which supplementary expenditure was incurred are those which were administrative in nature and as such, should have been foreseen and budgeted for in the normal budget process.

Further, your Committee is aware of the constitutional provisions regarding supplementary expenditure as provided for under Article 117(4), which allows supplementary expenditure to be incurred before approval by Parliament. This undermines Parliament’s important role in the budgetary process. Your committee recommends the need to seriously review such provisions to provide for the maximum amount to be incurred as supplementary expenditure, and the kind of activities to constitute such expenditure. This will compel Controlling Officers to limit the amount of supplementary expenditures. Moreover, unforeseen expenditure is provided for under Contingency Fund in the budget. Further, your Committee recommends that the Executive should be compelled to seek Parliament’s approval before any supplementary expenditure is incurred unlike the current situation where the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning only asks for confirmation of supplementary expenditure that has already been incurred.

Mr Speaker, your Committee observes that the Ministry of Finance and National Planning gives ceilings to ministries, provinces and spending agencies during the budgeting process. However, your Committee is concerned that some of these agencies are later in the year allowed to incur supplementary expenditure which is well off the expected limits. Your Committee is of the view that this amounts to poor budgeting and renders the budget process redundant. It, therefore, recommends that Controlling Officers be given realistic ceilings so that they do not come back to the Treasury to seek huge amounts as supplementary expenditure.

Lastly, Mr Speaker, the Committee wishes to record its sincere gratitude to all the witnesses who appeared before it and tendered both oral and written submissions. It further wishes to pay tribute to you, Sir, for affording it an opportunity to consider this Bill and for your guidance throughout its deliberations.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Lubinda (Kabwata): Mr Speaker, thank you for allowing me to contribute to this Bill.

Sir, I am a member of the Committee and, therefore, I agree with the submission made by the Chairperson of the Committee. However, there are a few issues that I think ought to be highlighted. The first is with reference to the Article that the Chairperson referred to in the Constitution, which is Article 117(4b) which states that Supplementary Appropriation Bill will be presented to Parliament not later than fifteen months after the end of the fiscal year.

Sir, I wish to observe that yes, indeed this supplementary appropriation was presented before the end of the fifteen months period. However, it was quite late. It was only one week before the deadline because it was presented to this House on the 24th March, 2011. In previous years, 2007 for example, the Supplementary Appropriation Bill was presented a lot earlier on the 16th February. In 2008, it was also presented in February.

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1815 hours until 1830 hours.{mospagebreak}


Mr Lubinda: Madam Speaker, before business was suspended, I was cautioning the Government that at the rate we are going, if not careful, the next time a Supplementary Appropriation Bill is presented might be in April, long after the fifteen months deadline. Therefore, we should be careful so that we present the Supplementary Appropriation Bill in good time. One week before the end of the period is not good enough.

Madam Speaker, on a more substantive matter, I would like to say, as the Chairman did, that supplementary expenditure is one of the measures of the effectiveness or accuracy of budgeting. It can also be used to measure the efficiency with which the Government is implementing the Budget.

 It will be recalled that in 2003, the MMD Government, through its then hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, promised this House and the nation that from then on, they would ensure that they did not exceed 2 per cent of the National Budget in form of supplementary expenditure.

Madam Speaker, that promise was made in the year 2003 on the Floor of this House and all of us were extremely excited that the Government was now going to be giving respect to the Appropriation Act passed by this House.

 Unfortunately, what has been the outcome? For example, in 2007, the Government used K548 billion above what was budgeted for on a Budget of K12 trillion which translated into 4 per cent of the Budget, and double what the Government had committed itself to. As though that were not enough, in 2009, the Government had K1, 114, 922, 000 of supplementary expenditure on a Budget of K15.2 trillion. What does that translate to? 8 per cent, which is four-fold the Government pledge of 2003. What that does, Madam Speaker, is to show that the Government has no respect for the Appropriation Act that was passed by this Parliament.

The question that needs answering is: “What is the reason for the increase from the 2 per cent promised in 2003 through 4 percent in 2007 to 8 per cent in 2009?

Another question to ask is whether this anomaly is because there are different people now in charge of supervising the budget making and implementation process. We know that in 2007, there were different superintendents over the Budget. In 2009, there were also different people who superintended the Budget process. Is it because of the change in players?

Hon. MMD Members: It is not a one man’s show.

Mr Lubinda: I am sure that my colleagues on the right who are saying that it is not a one man’s show will also tell us what their role was in causing such unnecessary supplementary expenditure 8 per cent above the Budget.

Madam Speaker, the next question is that of the reasons that were advanced by ministries, provinces, and other spending agencies for the supplementary expenditure. Like the Chairman of your Committee stated, most of the supplementary expenditure that we are looking at was totally avoidable because, in June of 2009, this Government brought to this House a Constitution amendment to alter the Budget cycle. One of the arguments presented for amending this Amendment was to increase the period of execution of the Budget from eight or nine months to twelve months. However, some of the spending agencies who incurred supplementary expenditure came and told your Committee that the reason for incurring supplementary expenditure was because of the short period in which to execute projects.

Madam Speaker, if twelve months is a short period in which to execute projects, one questions the rationale for drawing an annual budget that cannot be implemented in a year. Why draw a budget for twelve months and at the end of the twelve months come back and say there was no adequate time? That is totally unacceptable.

Secondly, some of the spending agencies were talking about the fact that the Ministry of Finance and National Planning provides them with low ceilings and that during the course of the year, they burst the ceiling. What that means is that this Parliament is being taken for granted and that they can come to this Parliament and say we have this ceiling and will apply for this ceiling, but during the course of the year, we will apply for supplementary expenditure.

 In some cases, Madam, you will be shocked to learn that the supplementary expenditure was actually more than double the appropriation that was made by Parliament. In a Budget that is activity based, once a ceiling is made, it means that the spending agencies ought to adjust the activities to suit that ceiling. They cannot continue to execute activities for which there is no money and then come back to Parliament after the event and ask approval. It demeans the Budget process and the Appropriation Act.

Madam Speaker, I appeal to the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, and the hon. Ministers on the right to guard the Budget jealously because it is the guide by which we determine our strategic policies and choose our development priorities. Without it, we are leaving everything in the hands of the people on the right and Parliament becomes totally irrelevant. That should not be the case.

Hon. Opposition Member: Very true!

Mr Lubinda: The only way that we participate in determining the development of our country as parliamentarians is through the national Budget. If our colleagues on the right can throw away the Budget and come up with 8 per cent supplementary expenditure, that is disrespectful to this House.

Madam Speaker, for some ministries, we understand that the ceilings that were given by the Ministry of Finance and National Planning were totally unreasonable. I have in mind Head 76, Ministry of Sport, Youth and Child Development. Whereas it was known as way back as 2007 in that ministry that the Government would have to appropriate what is referred to as counterpart funding for the construction of the Olympic Youth Complex, this Government did not ask for an appropriation for the project. During the course of the year, the Ministry of Sport, Youth and Child Development was confronted with the challenge of the Olympic Committee withdrawing their funding unless the Government put its counterpart funding on the table. Who in this Parliament did not know that the Government had to put together K10 billion to support that project? Obviously, whoever removed that from the initial application of the ministry was being totally unreasonable and we do not want unreasonable people to run the affairs of this country. Had that been put in the Budget, we would not have been talking about this K10 billion supplementary appropriation to the Ministry of Sport, Youth and Child Development.

Madam Speaker, like I said, budgeting is a guide. I have said many times that this Government makes statements that it does not even intend to live by. It makes commitments that it has no intention of respecting.

Madam Speaker, I want to refer to a very important document called the Aid Policy and Strategy for Zambia which was signed by this Government in 2007. With respect to budgeting, it had the following to say:

“the Government shall use its national budgets as a vehicle for making strategic choices regarding the country’s developmental aspirations. To adhere to this understanding, the Government shall do the following:

(a) Take into account the full cost in future years of entering into new financial commitments as to avoid possible allocative distortions; and

(b) strengthen Government implementation capacities to ensure that the actual Government expenditures are in line with Parliament approved budgets.”

Madam Speaker, is that what this Government is doing, when they are spending 8 per cent of the Budget as supplementary expenditure? Is that behaviour keeping in line with Parliament approved budgets? It obviously is not. One shudders to imagine what will happen in the year 2012. What kind of Supplementary Appropriation Bill will we see in the year 2012 when, as we have been told, Parliament was asked by this Government to allocate only K6.9 billion for roads in Kitwe and Ndola and there was only K20 billion for the roads in Lusaka. All of a sudden, we have a K1.3 trillion budget for road works that is coming in as supplementary expenditure. K1.3 trillion on roads alone. That is already 6 per cent of the Budget for the year 2011. One wonders what Supplementary Appropriation Bill will be brought to this House in 2012.

Madam Speaker, not too long ago, somebody said that the people of Zambia were not interested in knowing where the money for various developmental projects is coming from, claiming that all they are interested in is that development is being delivered. That is extremely cheap to say and must not be condoned at all. It must be condemned in no uncertain terms. There is no person in this country who does not care where the money is coming from. Every Zambian has much interest in knowing where their money is coming from. This Parliament must be told where the money is coming from. Is it from donors who are not known or from taxes that were not imposed by this Parliament? Is it coming from savings which have not been explained? To tell us to just keep quiet and watch you work on the roads is irresponsible. It is the responsibility of this Parliament to know the sources of funds that are being used to deliver development. Much as all of us would like to see development taking place, it is also our responsibility to ensure that those sources are legitimate.

Madam Speaker, we do not want to wake up one day and be told that funding for the roads that were constructed in 2011 came from strange sources, such as selling part of the country. We do not want to be told that the money came from drug dealers. We do not want to be told later on, that actually, we were borrowing at heavy interest rates. If this money is being collected legitimately, it ought to be brought to this House. That should not just be done this year, but in all the years in future.

Madam, at this point, I wish to remind the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning that in June, 2009, he did promise that he would present to this House a Budget Act that would take care of supplementary expenditure. This is 2011 and to date the Budget Bill is still awaited. I do not mind your talk about the constitution-making process since that matter was outside the National Constitutional Conference (NCC). It was a matter that was to be brought in this House. 
We had agreed to amend the Constitution in June, 2009, irrespective of the fact that the NCC was in session. By now, we should have seen the Budget Act to ensure that this Government does not play around with people’s money or borrowing heavily without asking them or keeping in mind its own aid policy and strategy for the country.

Madam Speaker, I appeal to the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to get back to the promise that this Government made in 2003 of ensuring that supplementary expenditure does not exceed 2 per cent of the Budget. Like your Committee recommends, even spending ministries must be given ceilings. There are some ministries that have reported to us that they need K3 billion for something, but all of a sudden, they come back to ask for double the amount as supplementary expenditure. It shows that first, the budgeting process is flawed. It also shows that the planning officers have no regard whatsoever for this institution. That is how they can come here and ask for K1 because they know that they will go and ask for K3 in the course of the financial year and will be given without this House approving it. We ought to respect this House. It is we gathered here who have that responsibility. It is not the people out there.

Madam Speaker, I appeal to my colleagues that, as they pack their bags to go, they should revisit the commitment they made in 2003, as well as the provisions of the policies to which they have paid much lip service. It is one thing to come up with policies and another to implement them, particularly, for this Government. Please, dear colleagues, let us bear in mind that this is not your money. It is money for all the people of Zambia.

Madam Speaker, I also want to state that the planning officers have no respect for this Parliament. Even where they are supposed to provide statements to explain supplementary appropriation, they come to your Committee without statements and yet they have an obligation to do so. When we were debating this matter through your Committee, all the witnesses except for one ministry I will not name said that they did not have statements to explain their expenditure. Hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, could you please go back and explain to them that it is a legal requirement for them to provide explanations for supplementary expenditure through statements. Without it, it is difficult for Parliament to follow the reasons they incurred such supplementary expenditure. I hope that my colleagues have taken abide by their own statements and pledges and that, in the unlikely event that they will present another Appropriation Bill, they will do it properly.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: Madam Speaker, I wish to thank your Committee for the observations made. I also thank the few people that have made comments on the Bill for their contributions. Let me now take some time to respond to some of the issues raised.

Madam Speaker, the first point raised was that we are presenting this Bill rather late. By the admission of Hon. Lubinda, the presentation of the Bill is within the normal time. It is within the time specified by the Constitution. There is no point sometimes to try and raise issues that do not exist. When something is in order, it is better to accept it as such.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: If a person is not happy about this, surely they must be in a position to raise a constitutional issue that there has been a breach. However, we have not breached the constitution so there is nothing to be said about this. I think that we would all have been saved time if this issue were not raised.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: Madam Speaker, there was a complaint that this Parliament has been turned into a rubber stamp. Supplementary expenditures are brought to the House after the Budget presentation and not before.

Madam Speaker, this Government has been hearing the cries of the people for years, and that is why, during the constitution-making process, this Government and all the stakeholders met for several months, and spent a lot of money to try and improve the constitutional provisions as far as supplementary expenditure is concerned.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: We spent a lot of time trying to work on this. Thereafter, we came to Parliament because the law states that any plans to change the Constitution must be taken to Parliament. Our expectation was that our colleagues, who are so concerned about the issue of good governance in ensuring that supplementary expenditures are brought before Parliament would support such a progressive constitution.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: You ran away!

Dr Musokotwane: What happened? They ran away.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: They did not even stay in the House. They decided to go outside where, I understand, they held parties or something like that…

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: …and yet there was serious business to be discussed in Parliament.

Mr Lubinda: You were not here.

Dr Musokotwane: I was here.

Mr Lubinda: No!

Dr Musokotwane: Madam Speaker, this is yet another example of how the Patriotic Front (PF) will say one thing and do the exact opposite.

Hon. MMD Member: They are crying.

Dr Musokotwane: Those are just crocodile tears…


Dr Musokotwane: …because if they had been really concerned about a good constitution, including supplementary expenditures, they would have sat here and debated with us.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: They ran away because they did not want to participate. This means that they were not concerned with this issue.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: Madam Speaker, I wish to advise Zambians to study this kind of behaviour very carefully.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: Some people tend to say one thing and do the very opposite in practice. Similarly, even with the promises that they make, no one should take them seriously because they just make empty promises …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: … knowing very well that when it is time to do what was promised, they will not do it.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: Madam Speaker, we also heard that there is a lot of money being brought to Parliament for supplementary expenditures. It is true that we have brought supplementary provisions for expenditure. However, may I remind this House that there are people who have said that when they come into power, they will build a university in each district within ninety days of taking up office.

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Dr Musokotwane: There are people who have said that if they come into power they will build houses for everybody within ninety days.

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Dr Musokotwane: There are people who have said that if they come into power they will construct all the roads within ninety days.

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Dr Musokotwane: Madam Speaker, this means that if they were to come to power, the supplementary expenditure that they would bring to Parliament would probably be 1,000 per cent higher than ours.


Dr Musokotwane: They must therefore not try to be angels because with the promises that they are making of doing everything in ninety days, including building toilets for the people…


Dr Musokotwane: …I am quite certain that if they were given a chance to rule this country, their supplementary expenditure would just be chaotic.


Dr Musokotwane: Madam Speaker, regarding the amount of supplementary expenditures, sometimes, when one does not understand issues, it is better to ask to be enlightened.

Everyone knows that in 2008/2009, there was a global economic crisis.

Mr Lubinda: So?

Mr Kapeya: Yaba, ifyakale!


Dr Musokotwane: When there is a global economic crisis, what happens, and we have explained this before, is that the buying power of the people shrinks. This is because they are not sure whether they will still be in employment the following month. Therefore, the buying power shrinks and under the process, if left like that, the economy contracts fast.

The typical thing that happens everywhere is that when there is an economic crisis, the Government spends more than it usually does so that the buying power of the public which is being withheld can be supplemented by the buying power of the public sector. This way, jobs and economic activities are maintained. This is precisely, if you read very carefully, what the Americans, Chinese and Europeans did. This is also what we did. This is why this economy continues to grow today.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: It is not just a matter of saying 2 per cent or 1 per cent, but putting things into context.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: If you do not know this then you do not understand what you are talking about.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: Madam Speaker, as a result of the crisis, we spent a sizeable amount of money putting up infrastructure that is visible for everyone to see. We have put up hospitals, clinics and roads.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: We also bought the food from our farmers.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: All this was meant to ensure that the buying power in the economy was maintained…

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: …to mitigate an economic crisis.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: This is why you have not seen the economic crisis taking root in Zambia.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: Please do understand these issues.

Madam Speaker, I wish to thank you for the support.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Question put and agreed to and the Bill read a second time

Committed to a committee of the Whole House.

Committee on Wednesday, 15th June, 2011.



The Vice-President and Minister of Justice (Mr Kunda, SC.): Madam Speaker, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed.


The House adjourned at 1859 hours until 1430 hours on Wednesday, 15th June, 2011.