Debates- Wednesday, 11th November, 2009

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Wednesday, 11th November, 2009

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]






181. Mr Sing’ombe (Dundumwenzi) asked the Minister of Education:

(a) whether there were any plans to electrify Jonathan Sim Chikanta High School in Dundumwenzi Parliamentary Constituency; and

(b) when a vehicle would be procured to meet the transport needs of the             school.  

The Deputy Minister of Education (Mr Sinyinda): Mr Speaker, there are plans to electrify Jonathan Sim Chikanta High School in Dundumwenzi Parliamentary Constituency through the provision of solar power by World Vision that was the funding agency for the project. However, there is a need for the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO) Grid as a long-term measure.

As regards part (b) of the question, Jonathan Sim Chikanta High School has no immediate plans to buy a vehicle because of budgetary constraints. However, the High School Board has plans to raise their own resources to procure a school vehicle in the near future.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sing’ombe: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out whether they would facilitate the purchase of this vehicle if funds like Constituency Development Fund (CDF) were used. Would they facilitate the purchase of this vehicle from any cheapest source?

The Minister of Education (Ms Siliya): Mr Speaker, the Ministry of Education has no control over the expenditures of the CDF as I believe it is for the council and the CDF Committee to decide how these funds are to be expended using the guidelines.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Speaker: The hon. Member has a problem coming back to you, but what I believe he meant was if he made available the CDF, would you help source a vehicle for them?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, we want to work with especially hon. Members of Parliament who are interested in assisting their schools in their area and we are very willing to discuss the matter and facilitate the procurement of the vehicle if the CDF funds are available.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hachipuka (Mbabala): Mr Speaker, …

Mr D. Mwila: On a point of order, Sir!

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr D. Mwila: Mr Speaker, you may be aware that last year in June, 2008, the National Union of Miners and Allied Workers (NUMAW) and Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) entered into a collective agreement from 1st July, 2008 to June 30th 2009. From that time, the two unions and Konkola Copper Mines decided to enter into a three months extension from 1st July to 30th September, 2009. From that time, Konkola Copper Mine employees have been waiting for the two unions and management to commence discussions for salaries and conditions of service.

Mr Speaker, at the moment in Nchanga, there is work stoppage which started from Monday, 9th November, 2009 and has continued to date. More than 4,000 employees have gone on rampage, destroying vehicles in Chingola and new flats which were built for the people of Indian origin, and all the shops in Nkana have been closed.

Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister of Mines and Minerals Development in order to remain quiet, without informing this House and the nation on what is happening in Chingola? I need your serious ruling.

Mr Speaker: The hon. Member for Chipili has raised a point of order which needs no paraphrasing. It is his concern that the hon. Minister of Mines and Minerals Development should be in a position to shed light on this matter.

There are, at least, three ministries that may be relevant to this matter. Therefore, without my assigning this subject to any one of them, I would like to ask the hon. Acting Leader of Government Business in the House to decide who, among the two or three of these relevant hon. Ministers, would come to this House to shed light on this matter before the end of the week.

Let me, while we await the delivery of that Ministerial Statement, point out that there are laws in this country which call on all aggrieved persons to resolve their differences peacefully, the Latin word is amicably.

It does not help anybody to go, as the hon. Member has said, on rampage and go on wanton destruction, hoping thereby someone will pay attention and then, hopefully, curve in to their demands. It will be too late, when property has been destroyed, to put that property back together. This House makes the laws I have referred to and I would like to call on all hon. Members in this House and any other law-abiding persons outside this House to ensure that conflicts are resolved peacefully, without destroying lives or properties. The hon. Acting Leader of the Government Business in the House will ensure that a statement is made in the House before the end of the week.

The hon. Member for Mbabala who was asking a follow-up question may continue.

Mr Hachipuka: Mr Speaker, what would it take for the ministry to include in the policy the provision of transport to schools such as the one being cited here?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for asking that question. Obviously, it is the intention of the Government to ensure that wherever we have our education institutions, we facilitate the requirements needed for education to be delivered efficiently and effectively. Sometimes these requirements are beyond just the classroom materials and they include transport, electricity and water. We are now compiling a list of schools that do not have water, electricity and other necessities such as transport so that we can have a wholesome approach to addressing these problems. The intention and desire is there. The limitation is obviously budgetary constraints, but we cannot fold our hands and give up. We are aware of the problem and we have to try and address it even in a manner that the hon. Member for Dundumwenzi has suggested and, that is, using the Constituency Development Funds (CDFs) to procure some of these vehicles.

I thank you, Sir.

Mrs Sinyangwe (Matero): Mr Speaker, considering that electricity has become a problem and very scarce, is the ministry not considering using another cheaper form of energy such as solar in the schools, especially in the rural areas?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, the House may wish to know that we are already providing solar power to a lot of schools in the rural areas, but obviously the long-term solution is that they should be connected to the Zambia Electricity Supply Company (ZESCO) Grid. We are collaborating with the Ministry of Energy and Water Development in terms of long-term provision of energy and water. We also want to continue to explore other possibilities.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muntanga (Kalabo): Mr Speaker, will it be possible for the Ministry of Education, as they collaborate with the Ministry of Energy and Water Development, to resuscitate the Gwembe Development Company that was tasked to electrify Chikanta because most of the people from the valley settled in Chikanta and one of the programmes was that Chikanta would be electrified? Will this be considered immediately since there is a high school now?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, this is, indeed, one of the options that we are willing to explore.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chazangwe (Choma): Mr Speaker, can the hon. Minister explain to this House how she hopes science, home economics and other subjects can be taught in a high school where there is no electricity?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, I informed the House that in most of our rural schools, especially high schools, we are already providing solar power to facilitate some of the practical subjects. If you recall earlier in the year, I informed the House that we would provide mobile laboratories in the schools where we do not have permanent structures and facilitate for that process and also provide solar power. We do appreciate the problem. Out of over 8,000 basic and high schools, almost half do not have electricity and some of them do not have water. We are aware of the magnitude of the problem and we want to address it wholesomely by ensuring that only stakeholders are involved so that we provide education effectively and efficiently.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Malama (Mfuwe): Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister aware that most of the Constituency Development Funds (CDFs) are expended in the education sector? If she is aware, what is she doing to ensure that there is proper co-ordination between the councils and the Ministry of Education?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, first of all, it is important to note that CDF are Government funds intended for the purpose of alleviating the suffering of our people in the various constituencies. And yes, we appreciate the efforts at the Local Government in supporting some of our education institutions that we are not able to capture from the headquarters. We have, at the district level, the District Education Board Secretary (DEBS) who work with their colleagues at that level to prioritise not just in education, but in other development projects so that we do not duplicate the efforts from the Central Government as well as at the Local Government.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mukanga (Kantanshi): Mr Speaker, by having schools without facilities, are we not compromising the quality and the education standards in Zambia?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, we have a lot of schools that have all the facilities required for us to provide education, but you will also appreciate that we have had quite a backlog over the years in the provision of education facilities in this country.

Now, in the last five to ten years, we have tried to meet the challenges of access in terms of providing to as many children as possible and carried a massive infrastructure development programme. Our idea is to have, at least, 16,000 new extra classrooms by 2015 in order to meet our Millennium Development Goals (MDG) Number Two of universal primary access to education, but along the way, we have also realised that providing access is not enough. We have issues of quality and are aware of them. We do not feel defeated with the current situation because we know that it can only get better if we have hope and continue to allocate enough budgetary allocations to ensure that we address the issue of quality by providing more teachers. In the last four years, we recruited over 23,000 teachers and committed as much as K30 billion every year to the procurement of desks. Yes, we still have a gap of about 300,000, but we are still not defeated because we are planning for that until 2015. We also keep committing huge sums in the budget to procure educational materials and all teaching aids that we can manage to procure so that we address the issue of quality. We are not there yet, but we know that we are getting there.

I thank you, Sir.


182. Mr Mukanga (Kantanshi) asked the Minister of Community Development and Social Services how many people were living with disabilities countrywide, province by province.

The Deputy Minister of Community Development and Social Services (Mr Malwa): Mr Speaker, according to the Central Statistical Office (CSO) 2000 National Census of Population and Housing, Zambia had a total population of 9.3 million of which 256, 690, a proportion of 2.7 per cent of the total population, were disabled. Of these, 135,532 were male while 121,158 were female.

The following was the distribution province by province:

 Province   No of Disabled People

 Central 24, 379

 Copperbelt 35,433

 Eastern 37,691

 Luapula 24,669

 Lusaka 25,963

 Northern 37,008

 North-Western 14,963

 Southern 29,404

Western 27,180

 Total     256,690

Mr Speaker, the House may wish to note that CSO requested the Zambia Association of People with Disabilities (ZAPD) to make submissions on the design of a questionnaire to be used in the 2010 National Census to ensure that the necessary data pertaining to persons with disabilities is captured.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister, looking at the figures given by the hon. Minisrter, when the Government will sign the United Nations (UN) Convention on People Living with Disabilities so that we may be able to provide the necessary facilities for them.

The Minister of Community Development and Social Services (Mr Kaingu): Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member who is a promising young man, but is encumbered with wrong people.

Mr Kambwili: Question!

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, may I repeat what I already told the House and the nation at large that the preparations of ratifying the Convention on People Living with Disabilities have reached an advanced stage. In fact, the next time the President goes to the UN, he will have it ratified.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Sikota, SC. (Livingstone): Mr Speaker, of the 256,690 disabled people, how many were born disabled and how many became disabled later in life?

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, even as the hon. Member asked this question, he could see that it was going to be difficult for me to answer it. Therefore, can he, please, lodge the question at the ministry and we will give the correct statistics. It is difficult to give the statistics off-the-cuff.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether the 256,690 includes only the physically disabled or mentally, culturally or, indeed, socially-disabled people.

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, this figure includes all forms of disability.

I thank you, Sir.

Mrs Masebo (Chongwe): Mr Speaker, do the figures tell a story regarding the numbers and causes and does that information have a bearing on his budget? If so, what percentage of his budget has gone to the disabled?

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, yes, the figure tells a story. It shows that we have serious cases of disability in Zambia and all of us must pay attention to this. As a matter of fact, we have asked, through the His Honour the Vice-President’s Office, that other ministries have focal point persons to deal with disability. The statistics give a serious story about disability and also show that disability is not just something we should just make noise about. All hon. Members of Parliament must be as concerned as Hon. Mukanga so that we can use part of the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) on matters of disability. Disability is a condition that can happen to anyone. Therefore, we must be very serious about it.

As for the budget, we give to ZAPD an amount of K5 billion every year.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Imenda (Lukulu East): Mr Speaker, looking at the figures, with specific interest to education, is the hon. Minister aware that Sefula Secondary School which was catering for the Western, Luapula and the Northern provinces has gone down to a point where the students are now suffering? What arrangements are there in conjunction with the Ministry of Education to improve that school?

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, it is difficult for me to comment if he cannot substantiate his figures or what he is saying. I strongly believe that this is a hypothetical question.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}

Dr Machungwa (Luapula): Mr Speaker, the figures given by the hon. Minister show that the highest incidence of disability is in the Eastern Province at 37,600, followed by the Northern Province at 37,008. What reasons would he give for the high incidence of disability in the two provinces vis-à-vis other provinces?

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, Hon. Dr Machungwa must know that the population of the Northern Province is quite high and, therefore, the population of people with disabilities is also bound to be high. That is one of the reasons that I can give. This also applies to the question that was asked by Hon. Sikota, SC. who wanted to know how many disabled people were born disabled and how many acquired the disability during the course of their lives? I would like to state that for us to give a good answer, we need to conduct empirical research.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwansa (Chifunabuli): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister how many of the persons with disabilities are receiving assistance from the 

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, the ministry created a vehicle in the name of ZAPD to mitigate all problems for the people with disabilities. It is this vehicle that we use to try and solve all the problems. This institution is allocated K5 billion every year.

Mr C. K. B. Banda, SC. (Chasefu): Mr Speaker, as hon. Minister of Community Development and Social Services and bearing in mind that he is a Member of Parliament for Mwandi, may he kindly tell us how much of the CDF money he allocated to the disabled people in his constituency.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: The Chair will not allow that …


Mr Speaker: … question to be answered.

Mr Kambwili (Roan): Mr Speaker, it is reported that there are more blind people in Luapula Province than in any other province in the country. May I know the attribute to this and if there is any school for the blind in this province.

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, the only school that was known for the blind was in the Western Province and it was called Sefula. I do not seem to know any other school, but now that you have …

Mr Tembo: There is Magwelo Primary School for the deaf and blind in the Eastern Province.

Mr Kaingu: … asked, I will consult my colleague, the hon. Minister of Education, to find out if there is a special school for people who are blind in the Luapula Province.

With regard to the cause, it is really very difficult for me to give the reasons, but, maybe, I should also consult my colleague, the hon. Minister of Health, to find out why the people of Luapula Province are born blind or become blind as they grow.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Speaker: The Chair hopes that the House is aware of the eye problem known as river blindness. It is up to you to read with regard to the cause of that particular ailment.

Mr D. Mwila (Chipili): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has stated that every year, K5 billion is allocated to ZAPD. Can the hon. Minister clarify whether this K5 billion is meant for salaries or it includes the expansion of farming blocks?

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, what we provide to ZAPD is the operational fund and we do not know how they use it, but we strongly believe that part of that money, of course, goes to salaries and the rest to programmes.

I thank you, Sir.




Ms Kapata (Mandevu): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the House do adopt the First Report of the Committee on Health, Community Development and Social Welfare for the Fourth Session of the Tenth National Assembly, laid on the Table of the House on 28th October, 2009.

Mr Speaker: Is the Motion seconded?

Mr Habeenzu (Chikankata): Mr Speaker, I beg to second.

Ms Kapata: Mr Speaker, your Committee are guided by the terms of reference as set out in the National Assembly Standing Orders. Going by their terms of reference, your Committee considered two topics as set out hereunder:

(i) regional and international health-related instruments that Zambia has committed herself to with specific focus on the Abuja Declaration and the Maputo Plan of Action on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights; and

(ii) the operations of the National Trust for the Disabled (NTD).

Your Committee also considered the Action-Taken Report on the Committee’s Report for 2008 and undertook local tours of selected rural health institutions and centres for persons with disabilities in the Southern, Central, Copperbelt and Lusaka provinces.

Sir, I believe that hon. Members have taken time to go through the report and, therefore, I will not delve into the details of the report, but just highlight the salient issues.

Mr Speaker, your Committee recognise that there are a number of regional and international instruments that the Government has committed itself to such as the Abuja Declaration and the Maputo Plan of Action on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights. These instruments are on key health issues such as primary health care and reproductive health rights.

However, hon. Members of Parliament have little or no information on these commitments because of inadequate dissemination of information to Parliament and the general public. Whilst the Abuja Declaration may have been popularised in some circles, little is known by the public on the declaration because the Executive has kept quiet after committing Zambia to the declaration. This House has not been availed with any information on what progress the Zambian Government has made in implementing the Abuja Declaration and the Maputo Plan of Action on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights and to what extent it is succeeding. It, therefore, becomes very difficult for Parliament to assist the Executive in meeting the target on their international commitments.

   Sir, in view of the foregoing, your Committee recommend that the Executive’s delegations to conferences where commitments are made should include hon. Members of Parliament. In addition, there is a need for the hon. Minister of Health to inform Parliament whenever health-related regional and international commitments are made. The hon. Minister should even go further by periodically making ministerial statements on the implementation process.

   Mr Speaker, these agreements lack legal effect to enforce them. This leaves room for countries not to prioritise the implementation of these agreements. There is a need for the instruments to have legal effect so that all countries that are party to them implement them to the letter in order to forge ahead.

   Sir, the appending of signatures to international agreements or commitments that cannot be implemented in time is a worrying phenomenon. Further, the signing of agreements and their implementation by the same wing of the Government makes it difficult to evaluate and account for successes and failures recorded. Your Committee urge the Government to expedite the domestication of regional and international agreements in order for the country to benefit from them.

   Mr Speaker, your Committee agree that Zambia should enter into agreements, but implore the Executive to ensure that the agreements are implemented in time in order for the general public to benefit from them. They further recommend that hon. Members of Parliament closely monitor the implementation of the agreements so that they are in a position to inform the public through their constituencies on the status of the agreements.

   Sir, your Committee observe that it is difficult for a country to implement international agreements if the source of funding are the donors. They therefore, recommend that special programmes for the implementation of regional and international commitments be locally financed.

   Mr Speaker, let me briefly dwell on the National Trust for the Disabled. The NTD is a grant-aided institution which has been tasked to provide special loan facilities to persons with disabilities on behalf of the Ministry of Community Development and Social Services. 

    Sir, the National Trust Fund for the Disabled was set up in 1994 by the Government to economically empower the unemployed persons with disabilities as a means of giving equal opportunities to Zambians. The fund is administered by the NTD. However, it is now fifteen years since the fund was created and the majority of persons with disabilities have continued to be among the poorest of the poor. This is a clear indication that the fund has not made any positive impact on the lives of the persons with disabilities. Some of the problems that have contributed to the poor performance of the fund include high interest rates, that is, 12 per cent and 25 per cent for a period of six months and twelve months respectively, for the kind of beneficiaries involved and short pay back period.

   Sir, the persistent belief by Zambians that a Government loan is a grant has been with us since independence. That is why there has not been a Government-sponsored credit scheme that has succeeded in this country. Because of this negative perception, the recovery rates on all Government-sponsored credit schemes has been extremely low, resulting in the schemes being abandoned. The NTD has not been spared in relation to recovery works.

Your Committee bemoaned the weak administrative structures of the loan scheme which have led to very low recovery rates. They are also disappointed that out of the total allocation of the fund, 90 per cent is spent on administering the scheme and only about 8 per cent is used on the actual provision of the loans.

   Mr Speaker, Zambians have generally welcomed the establishment of the Citizen’s Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC). However, it is your Committee’s considered view that conditions to access the funds set by the CEEC may not be met by persons with disabilities. In light of the above, your Committee recommend as follows:

(i) there is a need to carry out a sensitisation programme on the purpose and objectives of the loan scheme among the persons with disabilities;

(ii) the scheme should be extended to include the able bodied, but vulnerable in society;

(iii) there is a need to streamline and strengthen the administrative structure of the loan scheme so as to increase the number of beneficiaries and also improve on the recovery rate;

(iv) there is a need to increase  the amounts to be lent out and also reduce the interest rates to lessen the burden of paying back;

(v) the CEEC should set deliberate conditions that will enable persons with disabilities to have access to the fund as a way of complementing the assistance from the Ministry of Community Development and Social Services.

Sir, your Committee undertook local tours. The objectives of touring rural health institutions was to verify the report by the Executive in the Action-Taken Report for 2008 that staff houses have been built in some districts.

Mr Speaker, your Committee are dismayed at the status of health infrastructure in the country which is in a deplorable state. For example, Mumbwa District Hospital was a piggery, while Mkushi District Hospital was a residential house and Choma District Hospital was a tobacco barn. This means that no matter how much work you do in terms of renovations, not much will be achieved to raise the standards of these structures to their desired levels.

Sir, the reported constructed staff houses are just on paper as construction has been slow at some sites and no construction has taken place in many places where the projects have been approved. In addition, your Committee observe that only renovations have been done to a number of old housing units instead of constructing new ones.

Mr Speaker, your Committee urge the Government to embark on a serious infrastructure development programme by constructing staff houses in rural areas for health workers as well as new hospital buildings where they are needed and where projects have been approved.

In conclusion, Sir, your Committee wish to express their gratitude to you for the valuable guidance during the year. They are also indebted to all the witnesses who appeared before them and for their co-operation in providing the necessary memoranda and briefs.

Mr Speaker, I also wish to register my appreciation to all members of your Committee for their co-operation and dedication to the work of the Committee. Allow me to also thank the Office of the Clerk of the National Assembly for the advice and services rendered during the year.

Mr Speaker, I beg to move.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

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

Mr Habeenzu: Now, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker, I thank you very much for allowing me to second the Motion which has been ably moved by our Chairperson. As the House has been informed already, your Committee toured selected rural health institutions in the Southern, Central and Copperbelt provinces. Your Committee observed generally that even though the construction of new hospitals was taking pace, it was being done haphazardly. For instance, in Mkushi, it is not known when the construction of the hospital at the new site will start, meanwhile, one semi-detached house for staff is already there and occupied. The opposite is the case in Lufwanyama, where the hospital is being built without a provision for staff houses.

Mr Speaker, such inconsistencies in carrying out work should not be allowed. Your Committee, therefore, urge the Government to have a clear policy on infrastructure development for the provision of quality health services, especially in rural areas. A detailed document of what has been done in all the districts, in terms of construction, expansion and rehabilitation should be published for the public to verify.

Mr Speaker, your Committee toured Gwembe District Hospital. It is surprising that the ministry could report in the Action-Taken Report that staff houses had been built when, in fact, only renovations were done at a suspicious cost of K100 million. Furthermore, the ministry has allowed K400 million to be kept in the bank and yet this money could be used for construction of staff houses. Your Committee also observed, among other things, that the design of the hospital was not user-friendly to the patients. The hospital had no reliable CD4 count machine and had no operating theater.

In this regard, your Committee recommend that:

(i) there is a  need to build a new hospital for the district;
(ii) there is a need to build capacity in the laboratory by acquiring a new CD4 count machine;
(iii) the Government should build an operating theater at the hospital; and 
(iv) the reported K400 million that is in the bank needs to be utilised to build more staff houses.


Mr Speaker: Order! There is a very fierce debate going on over there (pointing at PF hon. Members). If you want to debate something else other than what is being debated on the Floor of the House, I would ask you to go and use the lobbies. If you wish to stay here, please, listen.

The hon. Seconder may continue.

Mr Habeenzu: Mr Speaker, your Committee will not relent in reminding the Executive about the plight of the Choma residents. The people of Choma have cried enough for a better hospital.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Habeenzu: Sir, while some years ago it was fine to accept a tobacco barn being turned into a hospital, …


Mr Habeenzu: … this should not be allowed to go on as the barn was only used as an interim measure.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Habeenzu: The building was not designed for that, hence the serious problems being experienced with the sewer system. The dysfunctional sewer system is a health hazard to the surrounding community. There is a need for a new hospital in Choma. In the interim, the estimated cost for overhauling the sewer system is K240 million. Your Committee urge the Government to release the money so that the system is overhauled.

Mr Speaker, your Committee were dismayed that the money meant for the purchase of mortuary equipment at Namwala Hospital was misappropriated. They, therefore, recommend that investigations into the misappropriation of the funds be expedited and the findings made known to your Committee. Furthermore, your Committee urge the Government to inform this august House on the measures taken to avoid the misappropriation of public funds in future.

Mr Speaker, your Committee are concerned with the critical shortage of clinical officers in the district. They urge the Government to send more clinical officers to Namwala District.

Mr Speaker, your Committee bemoan the critical shortage of staff at Mkushi District Hospital. There is very little effort being made to put the workers who have been hired on contract on the Government payroll. Your Committee recommend that the Government hastens the inclusion of these workers on the payroll to improve the situation.

Mr Speaker, in Lufwanyama, the construction of the hospital does not have the staff housing component. The provision of staff housing can attract health workers to serve in the rural areas. Your Committee, therefore, implore the Government to include the building of staff houses in the project for a new hospital.

Finally, Sir, your Committee observe that some projects embarked on by persons with disabilities who borrow money from the National Trust for the Disabled cannot succeed. The agents who act as advisors lack the capacity to administer loans on behalf of NTD.

Your Committee recommend that NTD build capacity in all the prospective loan agents.

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

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order! Before I call for any further debate, I would like to remind the honourable House that this is your report to the Executive for action. Therefore, the sooner we conclude the debate on this report and, of course, adopt it, the more useful your recommendations will be to the Executive in that this will cause timely action on these recommendations. Any further debate?

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central): Mr Speaker, in support of your Committee’s report, I wish to put it on record that what the Committee has brought out is important information for the development of the health sector, especially in areas such as Choma, where we have been promised year in and year out that something will be done to improve the hospital. Choma is known to have a general hospital, but the facilities that are there are in a deplorable state.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: It is, therefore, important that the Government responds to the request of building a hospital.

Mr Speaker, we are also aware that certain hospitals that were built before independence may not have been built to measure up to the present demands. One of them is the hospital in Gwembe, which was constructed on a plateau because the whites then did not want a hospital in the valley. I would like to appeal to this Government to consider building another hospital that should cater for the demands of the people. The Government should think of putting it up in the valley, in areas like Minyumbwe, where the district hospital is actually supposed to be and not where it is now.


Mr Speaker, I will not forget that although it was not mentioned, I would like to request that when responding, they should look at other places as well. They should look at what should be done at a hospital like Shang’ombo which is not yet completed. They should also look at small hospitals like Kalomo which we have been crying about year in, year out and upgrade them and have their facilities improved.

With these few remarks, I thank you, Mr Speaker,

 Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Minister of Health (Mr Akakandelwa): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank you for according me the opportunity to respond and contribute to the debate on the Floor.

Mr Speaker, let me start by responding to a few of the concerns raised by the Chairperson and the Vice-Chairperson of the Committee.

It is only a month ago that the hon. Member for Choma stood on the Floor of this House and commended the Government for the new Hospital in Choma.

 Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: I am surprised that, today, this should be an issue. I do not know where that hospital has disappeared because what I know is that Choma Hospital is being constructed and the contractor was recently awarded a contract in the sum of K7.8 billion.

 Mr Speaker, I will talk about Mumbwa District Hospital which is under construction on a new site. It is due to be completed in 2010. Lufwanyama Hospital is also under construction and the staff houses are under construction too. This is at phase III.
Mr Speaker, Mkushi Hospital is also under consideration for construction. The possible construction of hospitals is always taken in phases. Therefore, phases will normally be indicated in the handbook which was distributed to this House. It is just the reading culture of hon. Members of Parliament which is very poor because if you had read, you would have realised what phase I, II, and III were. Some of these issues that are being raised would not have been raised. Therefore, I would like to urge you to go back to the handbook which shows the Infrastructure Development Plan for the Ministry of Health. Please, read it. It will educate and show you what is expected.

 Mr Speaker, allow me, now, to say that the recommendation made to involve Parliamentarians in conferences where commitments are made is welcome as it would reduce the information gap between the Executive, Parliamentarians and the public. Furthermore, it would facilitate participation of stakeholders. Finally, the Government will enter into agreements which are in line with the National Vision 2030 and the Fifth National Development Plan.

The Government has taken note of the recommendations on the need to legislate international conventions and agreements and localise them. The Government is in the process of domesticating agreements such as the Convention on Tobacco where a Statutory Instrument (SI) was issued to ban smoking in public places. In addition, the policy on HIV/AIDS, TB and the National AIDS Council Act are examples of domestication related to the Abuja Declaration and Maputo Plan of Action.

Sir, implementing all these good activities requires availability of resources. The Government’s allocation to the health sector is still below 15 per cent of the National Budget which is a requirement under the Abuja Declaration. This poses challenges to the implementation of key health sector development programmes. An increase in allocation to the Ministry of Health would facilitate further disbursement of funds to hospitals and districts.

Sir, as a Government, we note, with gratitude, the recommendation of the Committee for the need not to depend on donors as the primary source of funding for the implementation of international agreements. I wish to inform the House that for the year 2010, the Government has designed health programmes with less reliance on donor funding. The Government has allocated more funding to essential health programmes, leaving donor funding to complement non-critical services. This, however, is not without challenges in terms of fully meeting the drug budget requirement.

In terms of infrastructure, the Government has prioritised the construction of staff housing as part of the Rural Health Retention Scheme. The Ministry of Health is scaling up the monitoring of infrastructure development in all provinces. To facilitate the completion of the projects, the Ministry of Health has undertaken an infrastructure audit and the resources have been apportioned appropriately in the 2010 Infrastructure Operational Plan.

Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that the Ministry of Health has developed a standardised prototype of buildings for health services provision and anyone wishing to provide these services should abide by these regulations. This effort is meant to regularise and effectively harmonise infrastructure construction and expansion with human resource staffing needs as well as medical equipment in order to deliver a full service.

Sir, regarding human resource, I wish to inform you that the Ministry of Health is undergoing restructuring. Treasury authority has been granted for recruitment and placement of staff. The Ministry of Health will continue posting health professionals to all health institutions. The House may wish to note that the Government, together with donors that are still co-operating with my ministry, has continued to implement the programme to expand health training institutions in order to increase intakes and graduation rates, especially for critical cadres such as midwives and nurses. This effort by the Government is meant to further improve maternal and child health services in health centres and hospitals. In addition, the ministry is in the process of developing a community health worker strategy which will complement the work of professional health providers.

 Mr Speaker, the Government is committed to providing Zambians with equity of access to cost-effective quality health care as close to the family as possible. The Government has taken note of all the important issues the Committee have raised in their report. As per procedure, we will provide a detailed response in the Action-Taken Report which will be presented to this House.

 Mr Speaker, I thank you.

 Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Speaker: Order!

Let me guide the House. I hear a dispute between the House and the Executive with regard to where certain facilities are being built. I suggest that in this digital age, your Action-Taken Report should include photographs - preferably colour photographs - so that all may see what is actually happening on the ground.

 Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mukanga (Kantanshi): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank you for giving me this opportunity to, also, add my voice to this important Motion which has been ably moved by the Chairperson and seconded correctly.

 Sir, I would like to state that when you look at the declarations that have been highlighted, the problem that we have is that of the current procedures being followed when appending our signatures to these protocols. We seem to have a serious problem in the way things are being done.

Mr Speaker, a good system is needed for us to have a way of domesticating these protocols. The current system will not do us any good. I am trying to say that the problem that we have right now is that when the Executive append their signatures to any protocol, it is very difficult for them to domesticate them. The reason is that before they append their signatures, they do not seriously look at issues from all angles.

Sir, I would like to give examples of some of the protocols that they have appended their signatures to like the World Convention on Tobacco which requires that they reduce the quantity of tobacco being grown in the country. Yet, when you look at the farmers who are engaged in tobacco production, there are a lot of them, and people who are living on tobacco growing are many. Therefore, it is important that we review the system before we append signatures to any protocol. I would, therefore, suggest that before any signature is appended to any protocol in Zambia, the Executive should bring it to the House so that hon. Members of Parliament deliberate on and discuss it. When the Motion is passed, it would empower the Executive to go and append their signatures.

The appending of signatures should be done in the presence of Members of Parliament, especially the Member of Parliament who is the Chairperson of the relevant Committee to which that protocol applies. If you do not do things in that manner, it will be difficult for the Executive to domesticate such protocols and that is where we have a problem.

Recently, the Government signed the Abuja Declaration in which they said that 15 per cent of the National Budget would go to the health sector. What has happened today? Nothing! We seem to be doing things wrongly. Sometime back, in 1994, we even raised the percentage to this effect, but now it has gone down. Why are we signing declarations and not honouring what we are signing? Is it just a matter of signing? It is high time the Executive realised that each time they append signatures to various declarations, they spend taxpayers’ money.

Mr D. Mwila: Hear, hear!

Mr Mukanga: Therefore, whatever they do should be done correctly. If they append a signature to any international document, they should be able to domesticate it. It is not necessary to just append signatures and do nothing about it.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mukanga: It is important that we domesticate whatever we append signatures to. The major reason you cannot domesticate conventions is that you realise, afterwards, that it is very difficult because you did not think them through. It is important to think through things before appending signatures so that the protocols can be domesticated.

Mr D. Mwila: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, I now wish to talk about people living with disabilities. The people living with disabilities need to be empowered correctly. It is important that we look at this issue from a serious angle. If the Government is just going to have a small amount of money provided for them in form of loans of about K1 million or K2 million and call this empowerment, then I think the Executive is not being serious. We need to ensure that the people living with disabilities are properly empowered by providing large amounts of money for them in form of loans or grants so that they are able to sustain themselves.

At the current levels of funding, the National Trust for the Disabled will not sustain itself and will not even change the life style of the people that are being empowered. It is important that we also look at the system seriously. We cannot have a system where, of the little money allocated, 90 per cent of it goes to administration whilst 10 per cent goes to empowerment. What are we trying to do? Are we trying to empower the administrators and leaving out the people whom this money is targeted for? It is important that we look at this empowerment seriously and reconsider the route that the Committee proposed of having the Citizen’s Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) deliberately set aside some money to empower people living with disabilities. The hon. Minister informed us that there were about 250,000 plus people living with disabilities. Therefore, it is important that we address such issues.

Sir, talking about the issue on hospital infrastructure that has been raised, especially in Choma, I wish to remind the Executive that it is not just a matter of writing ‘Infrastructure Development Programme’ and yet you do not visit the areas. Those infrastructure development programmes you give us are theories because what is happening on the ground is that there is no hospital in Choma. Therefore, if you are basing your answer on theories contrary to what is applying on the ground then you are wrong. You can get it from me now there is no hospital in Choma. They are still looking for land on which to build the hospital. You cannot bring in another argument that there is money in the infrastructure report. Yes, there is an infrastructure report proposing that there will be a hospital built, but, at the moment, there is no hospital in Choma. It is important that when people bring out issues, you look at them from a more serious angle. Leave your air conditioned offices and go and see what is happening on the ground.

I wish to still talk about infrastructure and remind the Executive that just in my constituency, there is a very big hospital called Ronald Ross Hospital which is falling apart. It is falling apart because it has got serious cracks. If you do not do anything about it, it will crumble. Where are the people going to get the health services you are talking about? You are allowing this hospital to crumble and yet you are trying to offer health services as close to the people as possible. It will not be possible unless deliberate action is taken. Proper funding should be remitted to that particular hospital.

Hon. Member interjected.

Mr Mukanga: Yes, I know you do not have a constituency and that is the problem. I am talking about serious issues where people need to be provided with quality services in as far as health facilities are concerned.

Mr Speaker, in Mufulira, Kamuchanga Hospital does not have a generator. Therefore, it is important that we look at these issues from a serious angle. What are we trying to achieve? If we are going to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the Vision 2030 and the Fifth National Development Plan (FNDP) that we are talking about, then we should address these issues clearly so that our people are given decent health facilities as well as accommodation for our medical personnel. Without addressing issues of accommodation, it will be very difficult. How do you expect a nurse who travels about seven or ten kilometres from Kamuchanga to Mulundu in my constituency, without transport, to attend to the people there? How do you expect them to deliver the necessary primary health care? It is important that we look at transport and infrastructure issues and ensure that all provisions are made forthwith and addressed accordingly.

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

The Deputy Minister for Southern Province (Mr Munkombwe): Mr Speaker, thank you for affording me this opportunity to clarify a few issues that have been raised regarding the Southern Province.

Currently, I am the Minister for Southern Province.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Munkombwe: Whenever I go on tour, I take with me the Permanent Secretary, the Provincial Director of Health and Provincial Administrative Co-ordinator (PACO). I take with me Government officials because hon. Ministers are not part of the Government. I take the Government with me.


Mr Munkombwe: I come from Choma and I know that, at one time, because of the calibre of people we have in the councils, there was …

Mr Mukanga: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Munkombwe: … a time when some years were spent quarrelling where this hospital was going to be …

Mr Mukanga: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, I rise on a serious point of order. Is the hon. Minister for Southern Province in order to insinuate that he is not part of the Government and yet he is in the Executive which forms the Government? Is he in order to debate along those lines? I need your serious ruling.

Mr Munkombwe: He is too raw to understand!


Mr Speaker: The hon. Deputy Minister for Southern Province will clarify whether that point of order by the hon. Member of Parliament for Kantanshi is valid.

May you continue, please?

Mr Munkombwe: Mr Speaker, in any district, the core leaders are the District Commissioner, Town Clerk or Council Secretary and the hon. Member of Parliament of that particular area. However, in the case of Choma, it took years for councillors to identify the land where this hospital was to be built. The hon. Member of Parliament for Choma will agree with me that a place has been surveyed and money amounting to K7 billion has been allocated for construction to commence. The hon. Member of Parliament, himself, confirmed this.

Mr Mukanga: It is K3.7 billion!

Mr Munkombwe: I can also confirm this fact because I took the District Director of Health and the Provincial Director of Health to sort out the land wrangle.

Sir, in Kalomo, the hospital is near completion. We have an honest and active Member of Parliament for Kalomo Central who can attest to that fact because he is extremely active.


Mr Munkombwe: On my tours, I invite hon. Members of Parliament from the Opposition and they cannot infect me with their political thinking. I cannot, also, infect them with my political thinking.


Mr Munkombwe: When it comes to development, we must work together. I have chosen that I am accompanied by these people. When I go on tour with these people, I do not talk about politics and they also do not talk about their political interest in my presence. Instead, we speak the language of development. That is what we are supposed to do in Kalomo and Choma. However, it is history for Choma because there will be a hospital whose site has been identified.



There is an agreement that the council and the hon. Member have agreed to. If the people who went to check on these facts still identified that as a problem, it is not a problem any more.

Mr Speaker, as for Namwala Hospital, there was a human resource problem, but the active hon. Member for Namwala sorted this out.

Hon. UPND Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Munkombwe: Mr Speaker, as for the Livingstone General Hospital, we now have an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and the learned hon. Member for Livingstone can confirm that.

The mission hospitals such as, Macha and Chikankata hospitals, where Hon. Munji Habeenzu comes from, are doing a fantastic job. All they need from us, as politicians, is encouragement because the officers running these institutions are human beings. I am within your reach, hon. Members, and I have not refused to be called by anybody. I will sleep in your houses because I know you cannot harm me. There is no one in competition with me in that area in as far as leadership is concerned. I must groom the people there for leadership.


Mr Munkombwe: They are very good and brilliant people. Take, for instance, Hon. Syakalima, who is very brilliant, but they need to …


Mr Munkombwe: … let me not use the word in its proper perspective lest it is unparliamentary. In the Southern Province, honestly, we have the cream of leadership.


Mr Munkombwe: I can safely say that we, in the Southern Province, are united in as far as development is concerned. I only blame the other hon. Members for playing their game outside a marked football field.


Mr Munkombwe: They do not know what they are missing by playing the ball outside a marked football field. However, they are entitled to do so.


Mr Munkombwe: As for Choma, Macha and Kalomo hospitals, the hon. Member responsible for this constituency is quiet, as you can see. He is quiet because he knows the steps which have been taken on the hospitals so far. We are just waiting for final touches in order to invite the hon. Minister of Health. We are grateful, tulalumba swebo, please. What I mean by this is that we are thankful and recognise the efforts of the Government.

 However, the people who are supposed to be the kapitaos of any district or rural project are hon. Members of Parliament. If they are docile and think that they are beggars, they should continue thinking that way while other people get into the system. All hon. Members are Kapitaos and so they should not blame the Executive because it is misinformed sometimes. However, it is you, yourselves, as hon. Members, who should tell the Executive exactly what is wrong.

Mr Speaker, I would like to say that hon. Members from our area are too decent to follow others.

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Speaker: Order! The august House should remember that this is your report to them. I do not know what more you want to say. They want to go out and take action. I will take one more debater.

Major Chizhyuka (Namwala): Mr Speaker, we should give credit to the parliamentary oversight system, which in the process of work enables us, as hon. Members, to go out to evaluate and provide checks and balances on the Executive.

Mr Speaker, I would like to talk about two hospitals and the first is Choma. Choma, the provincial capital for the Southern Province, has had its functions shifting among Livingstone, Kalomo and Choma from about 1902. Some functions of the provincial administration are still embedded in Choma, the headquarters, and this is, in particular, agriculture and a few others.

Mr Speaker, Choma as a suburb, is the largest in the Southern Province. The voting pattern even shows that the largest number of voters in the Southern Province is found in Choma. It is heartening to learn that the Government, together with the hon. Member, have realised that something has to be done about Choma Hospital and we are now talking about K3.7 billion. It is a sign that there is a progress, meaning, therefore, that come the next budgetary process, Choma, as a hospital, should receive the due moneys required in order to develop it. I have no doubt that this is going to be done. We do not have to scream about it because the way forward for Choma has begun.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chizhyuka: Mr Speaker, on Namwala Hospital, I am also grateful that the hon. Minister for the Southern Province has indicated that, on my part as hon. Member with the assistance of the former hon. Minister of Health (Dr Chituwo), I must give credit where it is due. With Hon. Dr Chituwo, we were able to deal with the human resource element which is associated with funds and also includes the mortuary equipment.

Mr Speaker, what is letting down the Executive are the arms of Government called the Drug Enforcement Commission and the Anti-Corruption Commission. Even where the manager of a local bank in Namwala reports to the District Commissioner about being fed up with what is happening and that there is money laundering, nothing is done. You see moneys being transferred from Namwala into an account of a driver and cashed at 13:00 hours at Arcades in Lusaka and the same money appears in Namwala in the afternoon. This matter was reported to the boss of the Drug Enforcement Commission, but no action was taken.

Matters associated with the mortuary equipment and other corruption involving that hospital are reported. There are also matters involving ghost workers who are paid by cheque and even have their names published in The Post newspaper. These matters are brought in the purview of the Director General of the Anti-Corruption Commission and, indeed, the then Deputy Commissioner of Police, but no action has been taken. If those bodies of the Government were able to operate efficiently and deal with this level of corruption, by the time Your Oversight Committee, Mr Speaker, was visiting Namwala, this issue would have not been reported on. Things are moving and those of us who keep cattle know that it is not every year that a cow gives birth to a calf because, at times, it does not. Therefore, when you find that there are situations like these, you take them into perspective and hope that, the following year, you will deal with them so that there is a correction.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Major Chizhyuka: We have been discussing a district hospital in Namwala because it services not only the people of Namwala, but the greater Namwala, Itezhi-Tezhi and the people in Nalubanda area, here, in Mumbwa District. Namwala’s population is about 100,000 just above 100,000 by 2,000, but when you add the greater Namwala, you are talking about a population of close to 300,000 people. For a hospital with a capacity of only six maternity beds, four beds in the children’s wing and around twelve in the male and female wings, to serve a population of 300,000 people, clearly the figure does not match with the population. I am hoping that as we discuss, we will revisit this matter and look into it so that we alert the population to the need for a district hospital for Namwala.

Mr Speaker, the hospital was built before Namwala Secondary School was built. An incinerator of hospital refuse is located on the Eastern Wing of Namwala Secondary School. So, you can imagine the stench when the hospital is incinerating that refuse. Furthermore, it could be at a time when the teachers in the secondary school are having their meals. One can imagine the stench that visits those Government workers at the dining table. It is amongst those reasons we are asking for another district hospital away from the current location so that not only can we serve the people of Namwala better, but also rescue the teachers at Namwala Secondary School from this stench of the incinerator of the Namwala Hospital.

With those few words, I thank you, Sir.

Ms Kapata (Mandevu): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank all the hon. Members of Parliament, who have debated in support of the Motion on the Floor.

Mrs Phiri: On a point of order, Sir.

Ms Kapata: However, I want to state clearly and be put on record that at the time your Committee visited Choma Hospital, there was no construction going on. In Gwembe, they claim that they had spent K100 million in renovating the staff houses, but there was nothing that showed that that amount had been spent to renovate the houses there.

I thank you, Sir.




VOTES 20 and 29 – (Loans and Investments − Local Government and Housing − K551,423,078,791 and Ministry of Local Government and Housing – K298,509,774,488).

(Consideration resumed)

The Minister of Livestock and Fisheries Development (Mr Machila): Madam Chairperson, in conclusion, I wish to appeal to hon. Members of the House to ensure that their respective councils quickly submit the outstanding returns for utilisation of the Constituency Development Funds (CDF) in order to ensureMachila that the funds which have already been released by the Ministry of Finance and National Planning can be distributed to all the relevant constituencies without any further delay.

I thank you, Madam Chairperson.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Vote 20/04 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 20/06 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 20/09 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 29/01 – (Ministry of Local Government and Housing – Human Resource and Administration – K7,735,203,235).

Mr Kambwili: Madam Chairperson, I would like to seek clarification on page 339, Programme 1, Activity 01 ─ Salaries Division I ─ K702,811,145. May I know why the allocation to this activity has increased from K122.9 million to K702.8 million. Secondly, I would like to find out what is involved in this activity because this is the only ministry that has provided a separate budget line for the offices of the hon. Minister and Permanent Secretary under Programme 2, Activity 04 ─ Ministers’ and Permanent Secretary’s Office Operation ─ K340,381,815 as opposed to putting this figure under Salaries Division I.

Mr Musosha: Madam Chairperson, Programme 1, Activity 01 ─ Salaries Division I ─ K702,811,145 is  meant to facilitate the payment of salaries, wages and other emoluments for departmental staff. The increase is just as a result of the 2009 salary increments.

I thank you, Madam.

The Chairperson: What about the second part of the question on hon. Ministers and Permanent Secretary’s Office, hon. Minister?

Mr Musosha remained seated.

The Chairperson: Mr Kambwili asked for clarification on two allocations.

Mr Musosha: I did not get the second part of the question clearly, Madam. May the hon. Member repeat it, please.

The Chairperson: I thought he was probably asking about Programme 2. Mr Kambwili, is it Programme 2, Activity 04?

Mr Kambwili: Madam Chairperson, it is Programme 2, Activity 04 ─ Ministers’ and Permanent Secretary’s Office Operation ─ K340,381,815. Why are the operations of offices of the Permanent Secretary and hon. Ministers provided for under General Administration instead of being part of Programme 1, Activity 01 ─ Salaries Division I ─ K702,811,145?

Mr Musosha: I thought the officers in the hon. Ministers’ and Permanent Secretary’s offices are also included under Programme 1, Activity 01 ─ Salaries Division I ─ K702,811,145.

I thank you, Madam.

Mr Kambwili: Madam Chairperson, salaries for civil servants were only increased by 15 to 20 per cent in 2009. Why has the allocation to Programme 1, Activity 01 ─ Salaries Division I increased by over 60 per cent? If you look at Programme 1, Activity 02 ─ Salaries Division II ─ K757,838,063, the increase is just about 15 to 20 per cent and not 60 per cent. Why is this so?

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Dr Puma): Madam Chairperson, in addition to what my colleague, the hon. Deputy Minister, stated earlier on, last year, we realised that there was under budgeting and as a result, most of the money for payment of the workers in Division I came from the Infrastructure and Support Services Department. As we go on, you will notice that the allocation to the Salaries Division I on page 352 has been reduced because some money has been shifted to the Salaries Division I on page 339.

I thank you, Madam Chairperson.

Vote 29/01 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 29/03 ─ (Ministry of Local Government and Housing ─ Chalimbana Local Government Training School ─ K3,526,052,359).

Mr Kambwili: Madam Chairperson, on Programme 2, Activity 04 ─ …

The Chairperson: On what page?

Mr Kambwili: On page 343.

The Chairperson: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours.


Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, when you look at past budgets, including last year’s Budget, staff welfare was budgeted for in the range of K20 million to K30 million. Why this year …

The Deputy Chairperson: What page are you looking at?

Mr Kambwili: I am looking at page 343, Programme 2, Activity 04 ─ Staff Welfare ─ K150,904,000. This year, the allocation to this activity has increased to K150 million. May we know what activities will be involved to warrant an increment of over 100 per cent? Secondly, I also would like to find how the training school managed to carry out its graduation ceremony last year and yet there was no provision, but we have provided an allocation this year under Programme 2, Activity 06 ─ Graduation Ceremony ─ K28,580,000. Thirdly and lastly, I also seek clarification on page 344, Programme 8, Activity 01─ Area Based Organisation and Traditional Leaders ─ K30,300,000. What is this money used for because merely indicating that K30 million has been allocated for Area Based Organisation and Traditional Leaders is not clear?

Mr Musosha: Mr Chairperson, the increment in staff welfare at Chalimbana is to deal with lecturers who are members of staff there which is due to the new programmes meant to be introduced to suit the modern world and staff required to be sent for in-service-training to be in tune with these new programmes.

I thank you, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: There are two other clarifications, Item 16, Graduation Ceremony on that same programme and then on page 344, Unit 3, Programme 08, Activity 01 −Area Based Organisation and Traditional Leaders − K30,300,000.

Mr Musosha: Mr Chairperson, for the graduation ceremony, the Chalimbana staff college had to ask for support from the headquarters. The other question my colleague will handle it.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Puma: Sir, on page 344, Unit 3, Programme 08, Activity 01 −Area Based Organisation and Traditional Leaders − K30,300,000. This money is required to strengthen community involvement in the development at different levels and that is why there is this budget.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kambwili: Sir, the explanation given by the hon. Minister is not convincing. Welfare has nothing to do with training. On Programme 9, Activity 01 − Conducting Training Needs and Assesments/Production of Reports − K30,300,000, they have provided money for conducting training needs and assessments. Therefore, why should they duplicate the figures by providing for training under welfare and providing for training and research? May we have a proper explanation on where this money is going?

Mr Musosha: Mr Chairperson, the training needs assessment is different from the actual training and we have provided for this programme as I have explained.

I thank you, Sir.

Vote 29/03 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 29/04 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 29/05 (Ministry of Local Government and Housing – Local Government Administration Department – K218,760,065,171).

Ms Kapata: Mr Chairperson, on page 348, Programme 2, Activity 04 – Local Government Week – K180,542,993. I can see that the figure, this year, has gone up by almost 250 per cent. I would like to find out the type of activities that would need this huge amount of money which has been given to this activity.

Mr Musosha: Mr Chairperson, on page 348, Programme 2, Activity 04 – Local Government Week – K180,542,993. When the commemoration activities were undertaken, we found that the allocation was not enough, hence the increment which we have indicated for next year so that the Local Government Week is well commemorated.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}

Mr Mukanga: Mr Chairperson, on Programme 2 General Administration, Activity 01 − Office Administration −  K804,789,809, I have seen an increase of almost 100 per cent from K489,241,150 to K804,789,809. What new activities are being performed because I thought that administration is fairly …

Dr Puma: Mr Chairperson, Programme 2 General Administration, Activity 01 − Office Administration − K804,789,809 is meant to facilitate the running of the department, procurement of office materials, requisites and services and also to meet costs related to repair and servicing of office equipment, materials, and vehicle maintenance.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kambwili: Sir, on page 348, Programme 8 Policy formulation, Activity 07 − Revision of Constituency Development Fund (CDF) and Ward Guidelines − K48,307,406. We were told on the Floor of this House that the CDF guidelines would be completed within this year. I am wondering why they have provided K48,307,406, again, for review of CDF guidelines. Are we going to be reviewing CDF guidelines on an annual basis?
Mr Machila: Mr Chairperson, on page 348, Programme 8 Policy formulation, Activity 07 − Revision of CDF and Ward Guidelines − K48,307,406. The revision is not just restricted to the CDF guidelines, but also to the revision of the Ward Development Fund guidelines.

I thank you, Sir.

Vote 29/05 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 29/06 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 29/07 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 29/08 (Ministry of Local Government and Housing – House of Chief Department K20,539,094,467).

Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, on Programme 2 General Administration, Activity 02 − Audit of Chiefs’ Subsidies and Retainers’ Wages − K230,000,000. The provision from last year has astronomically increased from K50,000,000 to K230,000,000. I would like to find out why this is so?

Dr Puma: Mr Chairperson, on Programme 2 General Administration, Activity 02 − Audit of Chiefs’ Subsidies and Retainers’ Wages − K230,000,000, the ministry has been receiving complaints from the chiefs countrywide on this particular issue. This is why we have allocated enough funds to ensure that we audit how funds are used at that level. The reason there is this increment is that we want to do the work properly.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Vote 29/08 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 29/09 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

VOTE 21 – (Loans and Investment – Ministry of Finance and National Planning – K1,792,905,623,699) and VOTE 37 – (Ministry of Finance and National Planning – K966,439,566,849).

The Minister of Finance and National Planning (Dr Musokotwane): Mr Chairperson, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning is charged with the responsibility of national planning and managing the economy at the macro level. It is also responsible for mobilising and managing public resources in the most efficient and effective manner. This responsibility is in line with the mission statement which is, and I quote:

“ To effectively and efficiently co-ordinate national planning and economic management, mobilise and manage public financial and economic resources in a transparent and accountable manner for sustainable national development and the well being of the people of Zambia”.

In the wake of the global financial crisis, which also impacted negatively on the Zambian economy to a certain extent, my ministry had to play an important role in managing the situation so that the impact could be minimised. Indeed, there have been signs of positive macro-economic conditions in the country and the role of my ministry is to ensure that this is preserved and enhanced.

In line with the Government policy, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning took steps to address a number of challenges and ensure that economic management in 2009 is centered on three key pillars, that is, prudent use of resources, enhancing competitiveness and rapid diversification of the economy. Strong decisions had to be made by the Government, including the realignment of expenditure from non-priority areas due to the constraint in financial resources.

The realignment of expenditure was taken in order to spend prudently and, as a result, a portion of our scarce resources has been used on infrastructure such as roads, construction of schools, hospitals, clinics and health posts. With increasing allocations to priority areas, our focus in 2010 will be to continue to improve internal control systems by building audit capacity and expenditure management. My ministry will also lead the way in the preparation and eventual launch of the Sixth National Development Plan and conduct the 2010 National Census of Population and Housing.

Mr Chairperson, to achieve our mandate, the ministry has put together programmes and activities amounting to K966.4 billion, part of which relate to national programmes that benefit the entire Government system. Hon. Members may wish to know that, like in all other ministries, provinces and spending agencies, the allocation to my ministry has been drastically reduced and the estimates presented here are the barest minimum, in some cases, but we shall endeavour to live within the allocated resources.

The 2010 Budget estimates for the Ministry of Finance and National Planning are broken down as follows:

(a) Human Resource and Administration Department – K468.5 billion of which:

(i) K190.4 billion is for personal emoluments, including employers share, inducement allowances and contract gratuity for constitutional office holders;

(ii) K264 billion is for support to institutions such as the Zambia Revenue Authority, Lusaka Stock Exchange, Zambia Public Procurement Authority, National Economic Advisory Council, Public Expenditure Management and Financial Accountability (PEMFA) Secretariat, Revenue Appeals Tribunal and National Roads Fund Agency; and

(iii) the remaining amount is for other operational expenses.

(b) Budget Office has been allocated K5.9 billion;

(c) Government Stores has been allocated K4.6 billion;

(d) Centralised Computer Services Department has been given K7.5 billion;

(e) Financial Management and Accounting, that is, the Accountant-General’s Office has been allocated K288 billion and the break down is as follows:

(i) K117 billion is for dismantling arrears to contractors, suppliers of goods and services, utility companies and housing allowance;

(ii) K188.7 billion is for personal emoluments, staff welfare and gratuity for constitutional office holders;

(iii) K92 billion is for expenses towards the Public Expenditure Management and Financial Accountability (PEMFA) Reforms; and

(iv) the remaining amount is for personal emoluments under Human Resource and Administration (HRA) Department and other operational expenses;

(f) Investment and Debt Management which has been allocated K5.3 billion;

(g) Central Statistical Office (CSO) receives K148 billion with the following break down:

(i) K97.6 billion is for the national census, K2.4 billion is for Consumer Price Indexing, K3.6 billion for the Post Harvest Survey and K1 billion is for the Fish Catchment Assessment Survey; and

(ii) the remaining amount is for other surveys and operational expenses;

(h) International Audit will receive K6.5 billion from K5.6 billion in the current year. The improved allocation is to ensure strengthening of the internal audit function in order to curb financial mismanagement at the grassroots level of Central Government administration;

(i) Economic Management will receive K7.3 billion;

(j) National Planning Department will receive K14.3 billion from K12 billion in the current year. The increase in allocation is attributed to key processes that will lead to the formulation of the Sixth National Development Plan which has been allocated K4 billion;

(k) Monitoring and Evaluation Department which will get K5.6 billion; and

(l) National Policy and Programme Implementation will get K3.6 billion.

Mr Chairperson, under Head 21, K1.8 trillion has been estimated with the following details:

(i) K28.7 billion is for payment of contributions to major regional and international organisations;

(ii) K71 billion is for projects such as the Copperbelt Environment Programme, Rural Finance, Citizens’ Empowerment Fund, Millennium Challenge Account - Compact Project and Establishment of the Financial Intelligence Unit;

(iii) K398 billion is for arrears, recapitalisation and investments relating to the Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines (ZCCM) Trust Fund, Zambia Electricity Supply Company (Zesco) Power Rehabilitation Project and Maize Price Support Arrears among others; and

(iv) K1.3 trillion will be spent on road infrastructure under the Road Development Agency (RDA) under the Ministry of Works and Supply for roads, bridges and culvert inventory studies, road condition surveys on TMDs and other road infrastructure programmes.

Mr Chairperson, changes in the Treasury and financial administration are expected in 2010 as the ministry pursues establishment of the Treasury Single Account (TSA). This is expected to address the challenges related to the current fragmentation in Government banking and Treasury operations and bring efficiency in the handling of cash and utilisation of public resources.

Sir, in line with my ministry’s objective of improving public financial management and accountability, my ministry will continue to spearhead the implementation of reforms under the PEMFA Programme. One of the critical reform activities being implemented under this programme is the Integrated Financial Management Information System (IFMIS) which will improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the Government to mobilise, allocate and utilise public resources. IFMIS will integrate different functions and management information systems of different entities through a shared data base and information technology infrastructure will provide managers with the tools to plan, manage and effectively control the use of public resources and facilitate decision making. In this regard, the Ministries of Works and Supply and Finance and National Planning are scheduled to be piloted.

The Fifth National Development Plan is ending in December, 2010. To sustain and improve the successes already scored under the implementation of the plan, the ministry is in the process of developing the Sixth National Development Plan (SNDP) for 2011 to 2015. A roadmap is being developed and consultation with stakeholders will soon commence.

The spotlight for SNDP will be to target development of programmes that will be implemented and bring the greatest benefits to our people. In this regard, I urge hon. Members to actively participate in the formulation process for SNDP so that there is greater ownership of the development programmes. As with the formation of FNDP, a consultative process will be employed so as to ensure participation at the district and provincial levels.

Preparations for the 2010 Census of Population and Housing have already commenced in order to create an efficient and effective system that will timely update population and development statistics and assist the country in meeting various statistical requirements for development planning and the 2011 elections.

A major challenge in 2010 going forward will be to prevent going back to unsustainable debt levels. In this regard, the ministry has set strict norms that will ensure that borrowing and debt contraction is in line with our debt strategy policy.

Mr Chairperson, some State-owned enterprises and grant-aided institutions have been a drain on the Treasury rather than a contribution to wealth creation. This year, the ministry is strengthening measures aimed at improving oversight, supervision, general management, corporate governance, quality systems and service delivery in order to boost their overall performance.

The ministry has, therefore, devised a programme with a view to hiving-off some grant- aided institutions, which, if given initial support, will be able to stand on their own. Through this programme, the Pensions and Insurance Authority, the State Lotteries Board and the Lusaka Stock Exchange have been targeted for this purpose.

My appeal to this august House is that we must support initiatives that are aimed at ensuring that grant-aided institutions begin to rationalise expenditure and find innovative ways of lessening their dependence on the Central Government Budget.

Mr Chairperson, as I conclude, it is my conviction that the willingness of all departments and grant-aided institutions under my ministry to prioritise spending and make informed policy choices that are affordable in the medium term and meaningful to long-term developments reflects our commitments to genuine improvement in financial and economic management.

Hon. Members, my ministry needs your full support in order to deliver. The programmes we have lined up in the 2010 Budget have set us on a path of improved capacity for co-ordinating national planning, financial management, economic diversification and broadening participation of the citizenry in a fair and more dynamic economy.

As I end, I wish to indicate that my ministry has made a realignment of estimates of expenditure and reductions have been effected on a number of programmes and activities. This means that allocations on some less priority areas have been reduced while higher priority areas have received more resources. This largely explains the difference or variance between the 2009 and 2010 Budget allocations. Where an activity or programme has no allocation in 2010, it means that particular item has come to an end and is not continuing. In the same way, those programmes and activities that had no budget allocations in 2009, but have in 2010, it means that they are new programmes or activities. In terms of explaining the variance or differences, any reduction in the allocation means that the extent of coverage of programmes or activities will be either increased or reduced for a number of reasons, including reduced ceiling, importance of a programme or activity and realignment of programmes or activities.

Chairperson, I seek the support of the House and I thank you.

Mr Mbewe: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Kasongo (Bangweulu): Mr Chairperson, first of all, I would like to acknowledge the efficient and effective manner …

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

Hon. Deputy Minister, I have not yet given you a point of order. Can you take your sit for now?

 I would like to appeal to all hon. Members to minimise the number of points of order because this, as many other heads, is very important. The fact that the point of order is coming from a member of the Executive, immediately after the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning has finished, bothers me. All the same, you will have your point of order.

A point of order is raised.

Mr Mbewe: Mr Chairperson, I rarely stand on points of order.


Mr Mbewe: Mr Chairperson, I am grateful and so is the country for the good job you are doing.

Hon. Opposition Members: What is your point of order?

Mr Mbewe: I stand here a disappointed hon. Member of Parliament that when we debate a ministry as important as the Ministry of Finance and National Planning, Patriotic Front (PF) hon. Members of Parliament are rarely in the House.


Mr Mbewe: Sir, it has been observed that whenever we debate important ministries, the hon. Members are not around, save for those who are called rebels.

Mr Kambwili: Question!

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbewe: Mr Chairperson, I need your serious ruling on this matter.

The Deputy Chairperson: This is why I said that I was bothered that the point of order was coming from a member of the Executive immediately after the Minister of Finance and National Planning had finished his policy debate.

Hon. Members, we want to move fast and approve the Budget. However, be that as it may, the point of order raised by the hon. Deputy Minister is a reminder that whether on my left or right, hon. Members should be in the House. It is a general and genuine appeal. Let us try to be in the House as much as possible. We have a quorum, but that is not to say that hon. Members, either on my left or right, should not be in the House. That is a useful point of order, but we have the quorum, therefore, let us proceed.

Mr Kasongo may continue his debate.

Mr Kasongo: Sir, first of all, allow me to acknowledge the efficient and effective manner in which the Government of the day has addressed the question of Indeni Oil Refinery by buying the whole company. I am convinced beyond doubt that sooner than later, they will be able to address the crisis that has surrounded that institution. I would like to urge the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to extend the same skills and competencies to address a number of challenges under his ministry and other ministries which have made the standing of the Ministry of Finance and National Planning questionable in our society.

Mr Chairperson, the first challenge that I would like the hon. Minister to address relates to ghost workers. We are speeding a lot of money in terms of salaries and wages on these people who are invisible. We are paying our departed souls, people who have already retired or people who are already working in the United Kingdom. Why have you not addressed these simple problems? This is not an institutional problem, hon. Minister. It is a managerial problem that must be addressed by your ministry in consultation with the Public Service Management Division.

There have been instances where civil servants have retired on their own and are working in Botswana, South Africa or the United Kingdom and yet, they are still on the Government payroll. Why should we continue paying ghost workers? This is a simple matter that must be addressed, hon. Minister. We are wasting a lot of resources on people who are not even alive or active in employment. Funny enough, sometimes you even receive letters from Cabinet Office that this person has been promoted and his or her salary must be adjusted accordingly and yet this person retired a long time ago and is working in Botswana. Can you address this simple managerial problem, hon. Minister, as quickly as possible.

Mr Chibombamilimo: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: Otherwise, you will be paying people for doing literally nothing. It is a weakness that can be captured by those who are being paid for managing human beings. This is a result of lack of co-ordination. You are not being fed with correct information. You are supposed to audit manpower levels in every ministry based on their establishment and the current staffing levels. If you do that, you will be able to find a lasting solution.

Mr Chibombamilimo: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: For example, if you receive a report from the ministry that this one is a departed soul, that person must be removed from the payroll as quickly as possible.

Secondly, the question of retirees has been with us for a long time. Why have you failed to address this issue? This is another managerial problem. Why should you allow a situation where people who retired a long time ago and are based in Samfya travel long distances to come and claim what belongs to them here in Lusaka?

Mr Chibombamilimo: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: This is another simple managerial problem that can be addressed by human beings whom we are paying everyday for doing literally nothing. That is why I have suggested in this House that there must be an exercise to evaluate the performance of the people who are being paid salaries. I have always suggested that if you find that some people have been found wanting, please, create a rehabilitation centre at Cabinet Office so that the same people can be retrained before being redeployed. You are paying a lot of people money for doing nothing. Can you address this challenge?

Mr Chibombamilimo: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: Hon. Minister, look at the plight of our retirees. Look at the way they line up at the National Pension Scheme Office in town. Be sympathetic and address this challenge as quickly as possible. See where you can raise a lot of revenue to address this challenge once and for all.

Sir, this brings me to the question of financial management. Financial mismanagement has been with us for a long time. What is the role of a controlling officer for example who cannot control resources? The moment you are given that opportunity to serve others in that role, you should know that you are being paid for doing something. We are getting all these reports every year about financial mismanagement. At the moment, some controlling officers are waiting for the Budget to be passed. They have been asking us when we are going to adjourn. This simply means that they want to know when they are going to have their share by using shortcuts.

Mr Kambwili: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: Sir, these are resources that are meant to raise the standard of living for our people, but we have allowed a few individuals to get this money. Even a credible Government like yours may become unpopular if it creates a situation where controlling officers are allowed to get away with mismanaging colossal sums of money. How many ghost projects are there in our respective constituencies?

Hon. Minister, some Zambians you are paying salaries misappropriate funds meant for development just at the foundation level. A project that is supposed to be completed within two months may take about five years because there is no accountability.

Mr Chibombamilimo: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: You have to address this challenge, hon. Minister, whether you become unpopular or not. As long as you address all these problems, I can assure you that everybody will be saying yes, there was a time when we had an hon. Minister who was able to address all these challenges within a short time. The onus is on you to ensure that you create relevant committees to monitor the performance of all these people who are in charge of the money that we appropriate in this House. It becomes so painful to find that people who are supposed to be given a service in terms of a hospital are condemning the Government because the amount of money that is meant to complete that project has been misappropriated by the people they drink beer with. Please, take action as quickly as possible. You are a popular Government, but once you allow this weakness, to permeate your system ...

The Deputy Chairperson: Can you address them through the Chair, please.

Mr Kasongo: Once you allow this weakness, hon. Minister, through the Chair …

The Deputy Chairperson: No, it is not like that. You must say, “Once they allow” that is the way to address them through the Chair.

Continue, please, hon. Member.

Mr Kasongo: I thank you, Sir, for your guidance.

Hon. Minister, I am appealing to you to take action as quickly as possible. It is not only that, there is no way you can continue entertaining people who have been given the privilege to serve others the moment you receive reports that they have misappropriated funds. You cannot continue promoting them because it will be a mockery to the whole system. The moment you identify that a certain controlling officer is not living up to the expectations of the appointing authority, discharge that person as quickly as possible because there are so many competitors in our society who can takeover. We have to look at the criterion that is being used to appoint some of these people. They are supposed to perform their functions to the best of their abilities and with integrity so that when they leave their offices, they will be respected in society.

Mr Chibombamilimo: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: Gone are the days when controlling officers would supervise their subordinates sufficiently. Today, some of them are even saying that if they become harsh to their subordinates, they will be finished off. Why should they be finished off? It means that they are also weak and they understand their weaknesses. The controlling officer is not supposed to indulge himself or herself in all these weaknesses because the moment the subordinates realise that after all, the controlling officer is the leader in all these dirty games, they will also do likewise and you will fail to control them. That is the philosophy one must use.

Sir, with regards to the question of loans, the hon. Minister must be mandated to attract loans in one way or the other. I would like to inform the hon. Minister that loans can create confusion in society. You cannot plan effectively because the loans will be on you. A loan is supposed to be paid back. I would like you to put emphasis on raising revenue from within. I have said it before that all ministries have the potential of generating revenue to enable the hon. Minister and spending ministries to implement their programmes without difficulties. I am happy that, at least, your philosophy is not based on International Monetary Fund (IMF) ideals as compared to other hon. Ministers. They were over praising the IMF, but at least with you, you have departed from their ways. I would like to encourage you to use the same institution that you have in your ministry to generate a lot of revenue from all these ministries.

Sir, the Ministry of Communications and Transport is a wind of opportunity you can use to generate a lot of revenue. The Ministry of Home Affairs and others are sitting on gold simply because there is no supervision. Any Accountant-General who deserves to be respected is not supposed to leave his or her office at 1700 hours. That person is supposed to find out from each and every controlling officer how much money has been generated on specific debts. He should be the last person to leave the office, but nowadays, the Accountant-General is among the first to leave the office. How are you going to know the revenue that you are generating through other ministries? This is what is happening in other countries. The people from other ministries are the ones who are supposed tell the Ministry of Finance when they have a deficit. They can even advise if the best way out of that deficit is to go to Washington to contract a loan.

However, an intelligent Accountant-General will be able to explore a lot of revenue earning options locally so that the deficit can be eliminated. These days, you will find that accountant-generals who cannot even interpret some figures.

Mr Chairperson, please, remove this tendency of holding on to the money immediately funds are released. It is an offence. Why do you keep money in your offices once it has been released? The tendency begins from the spending ministries in the provinces and districts. Why? You always hide under the pretext that no, the tender committee is yet to sit and yet the members of the committee are within reach. Why do you not mobilise all these people? Immediately you are given that information that funds have been released, you put the money together, make decisions and begin spending the money. Why do you waste time? Gone are the days when you had people like Hon. Hachipuka. I have always given him as an example. A controlling office is supposed to spend the money within a short time with results that you can be able to see.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: Mr Chairperson, these days the controlling officer will just move around and keep saying, no, the Zambia National Tender Board is yet to meet. Three months down the line, these controlling officers start accruing interest to put in their pockets. Hon. Minister, can you address all these challenges and become one of the most popular hon. Ministers?

I thank you, Mr Chairperson.

Mr Mooya (Moomba): Mr Chairperson, thank you for giving me this chance. To start with, let me say that I wholly support the vote. In doing so, let me start by discussing the National Road Fund Agency (NRFA). I remember in 2003, there was a Motion that I moved regarding the improvement in the remittance of fuel levy. At that time, it was very chaotic in the way it was being remitted. I still remember Hon. Namuyamba, Hon. Sondashi and Hon. Magande differing over the same, but in the end, we had to improve the way the fuel levy was remitted.

Sir, last week, in response to Question 163 asked by Hon. Hamududu, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning gave a break down on how the fuel levy money has been released from 2006. I think there has been a lot of improvement. In 2006, 69 per cent was released. In 2007, 99 per cent was released. In 2008, 98 per cent was released and this year, 2009, 97 per cent was released. Before that, I think it was very chaotic. The point I am trying to make is that there has been a marked improvement. Some of us who have been here since 2002 have seen the difference, but I think there should be further improvements.

Sir, I remember last week I asked a question and I am going to discuss this question, again, regarding the way the fuel levy is being collected and kept. We need some mechanism. I still insist that once the fuel levy is collected by the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA), it must go straight to the National Road Fund Agency (RFA). The fear expressed by the hon. Minister was that there must be some transparency, but I am saying that let us put up a better mechanism. The current route is very long. After the ZRA collects the fuel levy, it goes to the Bank of Zambia and then the bank puts it in Control No. 99 Account. We know that all the taxes are put there and probably mixed.

Sir, I think there is no transparency there. Once it goes there, it is mixed with other taxes and you cannot tell that there is so much fuel levy. By the time it goes to NRFA, it could be even half the amount which was collected. What I am saying is that we want transparency. We want this money to go straight from the ZRA to the NRFA. We want to know how much ZRA collects even if it later goes into the Control No. 99 Account, we need to know the actual amount. Therefore, I am asking, through you, hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, to issue statutory instrument to make what I have talked about a reality. For example, there is Statutory Instrument No. 16 of 2008 which was issued for the road user charges to go straight to the fund. Why can this fuel levy not be subjected to that? Since 2002, we have been requesting the ministry to send the money straight from ZRA to NRFA. This way, we can save time. I am told two months is lost because of this longer route. Therefore, let us use a shorter method and that is sending the money straight from ZRA to NRFA.

Mr Chairperson, I do recall that a few fellow hon. Members have suggested that the roads under the National Road Fund Agency (NRFA) be transferred to the Road Development Agency (RDA), and that all the money be handled by RDA. I was for this idea until this year. I have now changed my mind because there is a need for checks and balances. Let this fund remain under the Ministry of Finance and National Planning, where it has always been. I will not go into details because I do not want to be misunderstood. However, let me make it clear that I would like this fund to remain where it is for checks and balances.

Mr Chairperson, the programmes under this Head, from page 315 to 318, deal with road studies and designs. In 2007, when we had a workshop, the then hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning agreed that we should transfer these programmes back to the Ministry of Works and Supply. I am wondering why, three years later, these roads and bridges are still under the Ministry of Finance and National Planning. Let these programmes go back to Ministry of Works and Supply.

Mr Chairperson, the third issue is on the Road Infrastructure Rehabilitation Programme on page 318, Programme 15. I see that no funds have been allocated to the Southern Province.

Hon. UPND Member: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Mooya: There is nothing for the Southern Province. Maybe, the hon. Minister can shed more light on why the province has been left out. 

Finally, I think that it is all about having political will. I would like to come back to the fuel levy. Let us shorten the route. From the beginning, a lot of time and research was spent on this. The money is purely for roads. Therefore, let it go to the agency directly from the oil companies. The Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) should collect this money and from there, we can put up mechanisms to allow this money to go straight to the agency. However, let this money go straight to the road fund.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Matongo (Pemba): Mr Chairperson, I support the Loans and Investments budget of about K1.8 trillion, as provided in the Yellow Book. I suppose that this is the money that the hon. Minister will use to deal with the Loans and Investments Department of his ministry and manage debt both domestically and externally.

I equally support his rather small allocation of about K966 billion for his general operations. While supporting this ministry, I would like to wonder whether this provision for expenses - recurrent and emoluments - will be enough to do what he is not doing now in his ministry, to effectively supervise debt management and the monetary policy at the Bank of Zambia so as to ensure that interest rates are brought to levels where Zambians can borrow money and start investing.

I wonder whether that money is enough under a scenario where he is borrowing from his own budget, seeing as domestic borrowing is under just 2 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). I am of the view that the ministry has not been proactive because of insufficient budgeting in these areas. Be that as it may, the hon. Minister, when he answers, must tell us that he is comfortable.

Secondly, I would like to clearly come out and state that when it comes to international operations and subscriptions that we make with the help of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry and Ministry of Finance and National Planning, the hon. Minister should give a sampling, in his answer, of the cost benefit analysis for attending these conferences year in and year out. I would like to know whether there are definite monies that come from attending these conferences. I can give an example of the Great Lakes Region, the United Nations or even the Tokyo International Conference of African Development (TICAD). These are conferences where you flock to attend or, as my friend likes to say, “swing to”.

We would like to see whether, in fact, there is a cost benefit for these trips. I mean well that you need to travel in order to support your 40 per cent donor-supported budget. This country cannot do without you travelling. However, we want to be able to assess that there is a definite benefit and that instead of loans, we are getting grants.

Mr Chairperson, the other point I wanted to raise is of paramount importance …
Dr Katema: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson:  A point of order is raised.

Dr Katema: Mr Chairperson, I rise on a very serious point of order. Is the Government, through the Leader of Government Business in the House, in order to allow the hon. Minister of Energy and Water Development to go outside the country at a time when Zambia is experiencing a fuel crisis? Is the Government in order to have allowed him to go on less important matters?


Dr Katema: I need your serious ruling.

The Deputy Chairperson:  Dr Katema, fine for the point of order. However, we need to go through this budget. Raising a point of order on somebody going out of the country is not our function. I believe that is a prerogative of the Executive. He has travelled outside the country and that is, if, indeed, he is has travelled outside the country. You will recall that last time he was asked to make a statement and he did. Therefore, I do not think that I can make a ruling on such a point of order.

The hon. Member for Pemba may continue.

Mr Matongo: Mr Chairperson, I thank you. I was emphasising the fact that the next two points I am raising are fundamental and structural in nature in the operations of our Government in as far as economic ministries are concerned.


The Deputy Chairperson:  Order!

Mr Matongo: I hope that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning and his colleagues will consider this very seriously because I have said it before. Technical co-operation is extensively needed and the responsibility of foreign affairs is merely that of being a contact point. The operatives are the Ministries of Commerce, Trade and Industry and Finance and National Planning.


The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

I can hear somebody saying, “ Keep quiet.” Although it is not his or her responsibility, it only shows that we are not listening. Therefore, when the Chairperson keeps quiet, it is not for lack of giving directions. Let us give leeway because it is that point of order that will begin to get us astray.

 May the hon. Member on the Floor, please, continue?

Mr Matongo: It is very important that technical co-operation is well managed for a country like Zambia which depends on donor support. It is a slip of the tongue. I hope my young brother will forgive me for the slip of the tongue.

Sir, I am of the view and I am appealing to the Government that, perhaps, at the moment, the importance of planning as an instrument of development has been submitted to Treasury duties in the Ministry of Finance and National Planning. There is no harm in reverting to having a National Planning Commission. It is very important that ministries that relate to economic development in this country are brought under the presidency and the National Planning Commission so that this function is not marginalised. Clearly, presently, we are paying lip-service on this function. I hardly hear hon. Ministers talking about what is in the five-year development plans, let alone the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning talking about what was achieved in last year’s Budget, and yet we shall be going to the third Budget. This is because this function has been marginalised. Therefore, going back is not necessarily a bad idea. The hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning should reconsider this situation so that the ministry returns to running its core business, which is Treasury functions.

By delegation, the Bank of Zambia will run the monetary policy on your behalf which most hon. Ministers of Finance and National Planning have been very shy to ensure and intervene when necessity arises, particularly with regard to interest rates.

 I notice that some governor is now looking at that, but that governor must be told because that is a priority. He should not let inflation escalate. Therefore, both must be taken as equal. Having stated that, I would like to say that once we do that, technical co-operation which is now run from three ministries will be where it belongs, under National Planning, to help your internal revenues. The fourth point which I would like to raise is very weak. It is weak in the sense that by your own Ministerial Statement in July, 2009, the Budget which we are using was under performing. I hope you will remember the figure, my dear friends. It was under performing, in seven months, by K1.7 trillion or around that figure. It is in your Ministerial Statement.

Perhaps, in your policy statement, today, you should have given us a background to the actual performance of this year’s Budget from January to date and see whether it is still under performing or it is on course. It if it is still under performing and we are now going for a K16.7 trillion Budget, there is no relationship, therefore, to what is happening this year and to what will happen from 1st January, 2010. I get very concerned with people providing figures and making statements because, on the ground, nothing is happening. Development is about seeing roads being worked on. At the moment, we are all aware that the money coming to the department is very slow, meaning that the ministry has no sufficient capacity in terms of resources to supervise those who are supposed to generate revenue.

Sir, it is not only the Zambia Revenue Authority that does that. There are ministries like Home Affairs that collect money. Could the hon. Minister deal with that specific supervision and tell me that, in fact, you are collecting money as you reply.

The young Minister of Works and Supply is my friend, but I think he can do a very good job. Therefore, he must be supported. The Road Development Agency’s funding must flow in that direction. Rural roads in this country are an embarrassment. They are a total embarrassment. It is not that you do not have money, but because of our priorities, expenditure patterns and lack of supervision of those who ought to bring in money. You would rather give the money to the banks. Tell me what reasons you have for banking huge sums of money in private banks whose headquarters are in Nairobi and Johannesburg instead of banking in our own banks. The reason we have all these small banks coming from wherever they coming from such as, maybe, West Africa, is that there is money in this country. You should mop up that money for the development of this country and not to be sent outside the country. There is a definite weakness there. Come out of the backroom, hit the ground running and get the money for this country.

 You have spent enough time thinking and formulating policies. It is time to take action. You do not have to be nasty, but to be tough. There is no more good reason for the procurement agency not to perform their duties, forcing hon. Ministers and Permanent Secretaries who may want to work to do what is, by the way, not correct. We do not want to single source. If a road has to be constructed in Pemba and it takes six months to be constructed, you tell the hon. Minister to go ahead and single source or else we will not vote for you. I am saying that you have supervisory responsibility as a ministry. They have no reason to talk of imbalance every year. We are passing this Budget in good time for them to tune their programmes to the wishes and dictates of this Parliament and your ministry.

I would like to state, very clearly, that there is a tendency in the Government – when I say Government, I mean all of us in this Chamber. I want to quote because it is never the tail that wags the dog, but the dog that wags the tail. Sometimes, our men and women on your right think it is the tail that wags the dog. What I mean is that the arrogance of some of the civil servants have made you fail to perform. I refuse to say that the hon. Minister has no authority over the Permanent Secretary. I would like to quote what the President of Brazil recently said at the United Nations General Assembly. He said:

 “Part of our underdevelopment …”


Mr Matongo: He said this at the UN General Assembly. I was there. So, do not argue.


Mr Matongo: He said:

“Part of our underdevelopment is the incapacity to control our arrogant public servants.”

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chairperson, I am using that word in a polite manner to my dear brothers wherever they are seated. However, we would like things to be done properly and fast. Folios on files must move faster than one month.

Hon. Opposition Members: Yes!

Mr D. Mwila: That is where the problem is.

Mr Matongo: Hon. Ministers have ostensive authority to dictate the pace of development.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Matongo: Hon. Ministers have that power to dictate and should not feel shy to carry out what we tell them to do in this Chamber and we will support them if they do the right thing.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! The hon. Member’s time has expired.

Mr Kambwili (Roan): Mr Chairperson, thank you for according me this opportunity to add my voice to the debate on the Vote of the Ministry of Finance and National Planning. In doing so, I will be brief in highlighting a few things that I think are important to remind the hon. Minister in his quest to provide checks and balances in the way public funds are disbursed and used.

Sir, first and foremost, I want to take Hon. Matongo’s debate as my own, especially when he stated that Permanent Secretaries must not be arrogant, but be supervised by hon. Ministers. This is, indeed, true.

Last week, the Tennis Association of Zambia was asking for US$15,000 from the Government to take a team of junior players to the Africa Cup. When I telephoned the hon. Minister of Sport, Youth and Child Development to find out, he agreed and said, “I agree with you, but my Permanent Secretary has refused to use the money that the President gave us.”

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!


The Deputy Chairperson: Order! Hon. Kambwili, you are making a point in agreement with what Hon. Matongo said. It is not advisable for you to give that type of example where you are coming straight to the point.


The Deputy Chairperson: I think you should do it nicely.

You may continue.

Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, one particular hon. Minister of a certain ministry clearly stated that he was of mine and other stakeholders’ view, but the Permanent Secretary refused to use the money that the President raised on behalf of the sporting activities in Zambia to give that association. This shows the loss of grip by our hon. Ministers on their Permanent Secretaries. Sometimes, we may not blame them because both of them are appointed by the President. Therefore, you may not know the relationship between the President and the Permanent Secretary. Sometimes, these hon. Ministers are scared of their own shadows.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Kambwili: Sir, I wish to state that now that the Budget Cycle has changed, we do not want to hear problems of money not being released for projects. We have supported the Government in changing the Budget Cycle and adjusted our programmes as hon. Members of Parliament. Instead of doing other things this time, because you may wish to know, Mr Chairperson, that, every year, this time, we used to be in our own constituencies. We adjusted our time and we want to state that we did not adjust the time for nothing. We adjusted our time because we want development in this country to move forward. Therefore, you must use this opportunity of changing the Budget Cycle to prepare such that come 1st January to 31st December, you will have enough time to release money to the projects of national development.

One other thing that I want to talk about is the fact that there has been a very big problem, hon. Minister, through you, Mr Chairperson, …

The Deputy Chairperson: Chairman!

Mr Kambwili: … in releasing grants to secondary schools. Especially in 2009, it has been erratic. I do not know with other constituencies, but in my constituency, the biggest complaint that I have received from head teachers is that out of the eleventh year, probably, only about four months of grants have been released. This is extremely serious and it makes the job of the head teacher extremely difficult. You are aware that there is free education from Grade 1 to 9, but if you do not send these grants, how do you expect these head teachers to conduct mock examinations and other examinations for the Grade 9 pupils and coming downwards.

Therefore, I would like to urge the hon. Minister to seriously liaise with the hon. Minister of Education to ensure that moneys for the schools are released on time. Even if we are going through the global crunch, you will still agree with me, Mr Chairperson, that education is a key sector that must be given the urgency that it deserves.

Sir, we need to broaden the tax base. I am an hon. Member of Parliament representing miners and I am sure other hon. Members of Parliament representing miners will agree with me that miners are highly taxed. Miners and many other employees are highly taxed in Zambia because the tax burden has not been broadened. There are a lot of areas where you can see money flowing and the Government is just letting it pass across its face. We need to broaden the tax base.

For example, if you went to Indian shops you would find that Indian traders are the people who evade tax so much. When one buys from them, sometimes, they tell you that “Do not pay me by cheque because I will not give you a tax invoice.” We see these things. We need to find a way of capturing the money from the Indian traders. You would find their shops are so full, but what they declare as tax to the Government is very little, and yet, the poor workers and miners are taxed for the purpose of developing the entire country. Even the civil servants and teachers are highly taxed. Nurses are also highly taxed, and yet we can broaden the tax base and collect more revenue that would cushion the employees.

Hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, my humble request to you is that we need to give a reasonable tax threshold. The K800 million proposed in this Budget is not enough. Our people are suffering. We can see that we give them a tax threshold of K800,000 and in the same Budget, it is proposed that tax on diesel will increase from 7 per cent to 10 per cent. Already the 100 that you have given them is overtaken. Therefore, we need to give a proper threshold so that our people can be cushioned.

Put in measures against pilferage and theft of public resources. Sir, I want to say that theft of public resources begins in the Yellow Book. If we are not careful as Parliamentarians and, of course, the Executive, we shall be helping people to steal public resources.

Mr Chairperson, yesterday, I was disappointed that in one ministry there is a provision of housing allowance for magistrates and at the same time there is a provision …

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! Please, zero in on what is under discussion now. That one has passed.

Mr Kambwili: Yes, Mr Chairperson. You will observe that there are duplications in the provisions in the Budget. When we ask our colleagues, they seem to be defending it. We must be very careful. When we raise issues, here, we are not raising issues for the sake of just raising them, but because we have seen that civil servants, today, drive the most expensive vehicles. They have built the biggest mansions. If you look at their salaries, they are not commensurate with what they are enjoying, and yet we can see that in the Budget, there is duplication of figures. There is training budgeted for on one side and on the other side, it is budgeted for within welfare. This is the money that is stolen. Unless we begin to follow these figures closely, we shall forever bemoan the fact that civil servants are stealing. We should not complain because we will be urging them to steal public funds. Therefore, I urge the hon. Minister to be critical on the figures if we are going to fight this scourge.

Mr Chairperson, the issue of the former Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines (ZCCM) Ndola Copper Refinery workers is an issue within the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Finance and National Planning. When Roan Antelope Company of Zambia (RAMCOZ) went into receivership, the Government said it was going to take up the responsibility of paying employees obligations. I would like to thank the Government for spending US$35 million to clear the workers who were at Luanshya Copper Mines, but it did not clear those who were at the Ndola Copper Refinery. There have been meetings between the Ministry of Finance and National Planning officials and representatives of this group. This is the fourth time that I am talking about this issue, but no action has been taken.

Hon. Member: Negotiations are still on, iwe!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, some of the people have died, leaving their money behind. Some of them have children to send to school. I am requesting the hon. Minister to expedite the negotiations. I also wish to urge the hon. Minister to do the same regarding the NAPSA case for the former RAMCOZ employees both at Luanshya Copper Mine and Ndola Copper Refinery.

With these few words, I thank you.

Mr Hachipuka (Mbabala): Mr Chairperson, I thank you very much for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the debate on votes 21 and 37.

Mr Chairperson, I would like to use this opportunity to ask the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, who is a member of the Standing Orders Committee of the National Assembly, why he is unable to propose, through the Standing Orders, that we begin to debate the revenue side of the Budget as shown in the Yellow Book.

Mr Chairperson, if you look from page 37 onwards, he has actually indicated the estimated revenue, grants and financing. We need to find a window to discuss this as a House. It should not be a secret or an item put in this book, but not discussed. If we are going to be held by traditions of the way it is done in Westminster or elsewhere, what we should know is that our case is unique. We have to debate now, not under the Appropriation Bill. After we have approved all the expenditure that is when the Bill is brought to the House and the same evening we rush through it. This is a major issue and I would like to appeal, through him, seriously speaking, that we should reform and we should do, as a country, things that help us.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! Hon. Hachipuka, you have made your point and as you are aware, there are various committees through which these proposals can come to the House. We have the Reforms and Modernisation Committee and so I would rather you came to the subject before us.

Mr Hachipuka: Mr Chairperson, I was saying things with that perspective in mind. The other point I would like to discuss is that my colleagues have been discussing the issue regarding controlling officers and their power to control. We can discuss the issue of audit reports, and security wings, but those discussions will not add value. The question is, is there sufficient legislation to enable the hon. Ministers responsible for the ministries, including the Ministry of Finance and National Planning to take conclusive action? Each time there is an audit report or a theft scandal, the problem we have is that none of the hon. Ministers have enough teeth to bite.

Miss Siliya: Hear, hear!

Mr Hachipuka: Mr Chairperson, if you look at the audit reports, expenditures and allocations in the Yellow Book, you will find that we had approved so much money, line by line and you will also see the fulfilment in terms of the releases. In those documents, you will further see that so much money was spent and yet most of this money is not spent on what it is supposed to be spent on. Even when an audit report in that particular area is released, what happens thereafter? Nothing. You can actually get away with it.

Mr Chairperson, a controlling officer or anybody can spend or steal or do anything inappropriate, but nothing can happen. It is that which we must decide how to deal with and not just discuss it. I have seen reports written by the Auditor-General which have been presented with recommendations made by individual committees. Once the House adopts the reports, whose responsibility is it to follow things through? It is the hon. Minister’s responsibility. This Government has continued to centralise its reactions to the reports. They are centralised in the Office of the Vice-President and the officers who handle the replies are very junior.

Mr Chairperson, when we were discussing the issues of remuneration, I hoped that one day these hon. Ministers would be better paid than their officers. It is fake for an officer to call Hon. Hachipuka his supervisor “Sir” when that officer gets three times his salary. These hon. Ministers even beg for imprest. If an hon. Minister is travelling somewhere, he has to ask a Permanent Secretary whether he can go or not.

Ms Cifire: Hear, hear!

Mr Hachipuka: How can a person who is a beggar control a controlling officer? How?

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Hachipuka: Mr Chairperson, we must find a methodology. This is an issue which, maybe, should come through a Motion. This is a matter which Cabinet must sit down and think about …

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! I was waiting to see how you would relate the issue to the items under discussion.

Mr Hachipuka: Mr Chairperson, this is within the issues regarding the Ministry of Finance and National Planning. A total of K1.8 trillion is being expended to support our loan portfolio under Vote 21. Under item 37, we are spending under K1 trillion to support this ministry. Now, will that money be properly utilised? Even if it is, I can still pick specific examples in the Yellow Book of money which has not been utilised for the purpose it has been approved for in the House. What is it that we have to do? If it is legislation that we need to put in place, it has to come from the Government. What is it that they discuss in Cabinet meetings which can assist us to deal with this matter? It is from that perspective that I am saying …


Mr Hachipuka: Sometimes I …

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! Some people on my right are agreeing with the hon. Member, but that is not the issue. He should be given a chance to debate.

Mr Hachipuka: Mr Chairperson, I have been here eleven years now, you have seen me reduce the size of my debates because I have found them very academic. The hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning should be creative and through Cabinet come up with ways to strengthen and protect expenditure so as to ensure that the moneys are used for the intended purposes. If you look in the Yellow Book, you will find various lines and various allocations and if you go to the ministry under the Budget Office, so much money is released, but how much of that money reaches the intended purposes? We were earlier discussing the issue of hospitals in the Southern Province. How many projects have we spent money on from his ministry through these controlling officers which we indicated as money spent, but nothing on the ground has taken place? It is from that perspective that I sometimes find these debates academic.

Mr Chairperson, unless we have a creative Cabinet and a creative Minister of Finance and National Planning who is supported by his colleagues to make sure that expenditures reach the intended projects, we are wasting time.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Musokotwane: Mr Chairperson, through you, I wish to thank the hon. Members who have contributed to the debate. Let me just react to some of the issues that were raised. It is not possible to respond to everything otherwise we will be here the whole night. The first point that I would like to address is on financial management which has been raised by a number of our colleagues.

Mr Chairperson, I wish to say that one of the innovations that we have introduced this year and, perhaps, more strongly in 2010 is the issue of the audit committees. In the corporate world, there is normally a board of directors and a sub-committee of the boards that deal with audit matters. This issue has already been provided for in the Public Finance Act, but the implementation has been rather weak. Therefore, we are moving very strongly now to ensure that every ministry and spending agency has an Audit Committee. The Audit Committee includes members of professional associations, such as the Law Association of Zambia, accountants and purchasing specialists. The whole idea is that every so often, quarterly, they will meet and go through the report that is being submitted by the Chief Internal Auditor on that ministry. The idea is that since there are independent people from outside, it should help improve the accountability that we are all looking forward to. I thought I should mention that point and I wish to urge hon. Members who belong to various professional associations to ensure that their members take this activity very seriously because we believe that it is going to help.

Hon. Mooya talked about the management of funds of the road levy. This is something that we can examine. I will ask my officers to take a look at this and if it is practical, we can adopt it. He also complained about why the issues of monies for roads, bridges and so forth still appear under the Ministry of Finance and National Planning. The reason for this is that, by his own admission, the National Road Fund Agency (NRFA) which controlls the funds is under the Ministry of Finance and National Planning and because we are the ones who receive this money and supervise its expenditure, the budget still finds itself in the Ministry of Finance and National Planning.

 I wish to say that the Southern Province has significant amount of money. This year, the Zimba/Livingstone Road alone gobbled so much money in addition to many others. 


Dr Musokotwane: Let me address the issue that Hon. Matongo raised about planning. I have always emphasised that it is important that for us in Government to do our job in the most cost-effective manner possible we need to plan. At the moment, as we have said, about 50 per cent of all the taxes that we collect are spent on paying ourselves, the public workers, including us Members of Parliament. This is too much and we need to find ways of making the Government more efficient and efficiency means that we need to do more. In this respect, we are not the only country in Africa. In fact, in the majority of countries in Africa, the planning and Treasury function are combined. Therefore, we are not unique. It is important for purposes of ensuring that we are cost effective and prevent a possibility whereby the people in planning make all types of plans which cannot be funded adequately. This is why most countries actually combine the two functions. However, I wish to assure you that there is no problem that we see. Planning is done once every five years. Therefore, you do not need a huge bureaucracy for that.

Mr Chairperson, the most important thing after the planning has been done is, are you providing resources and are you monitoring? And I can assure you that every month the ministry provides an update of everything that is happening in one report and this is shared by Cabinet. Therefore, sitting in my office, I can tell how a particular road is performing because I receive those reports every month without fail. Thus, I do not see much of a problem, particularly in this scenario where we want to minimise Government expenditures.

Mr Chairperson, let me comment on the issue of the tax burden. It is true that there are individuals who run away from taxes. The only thing I would say is that in the case of Zambia, I do not think we can single out one particular group and say it is the Indians or Chinese or Africans who run away from tax. This is a problem that cuts across and we are working on it. For example, I will not say that all the tax evaders are from Mbabala because I think that would be wrong.


Dr Musokotwane: Otherwise, I have been speaking to the board of ZRA and ZRA itself, making very strong points. We know the main cause revenues are running below targets. The main cause is the taxes on imports are running the lowest because following the exchange rate movement that we had last year, the volume of imports that came into Zambia has significantly declined, but we keep on emphasising that at a time like this. This is where we need to improve our efficiency so that even though the economic fundamentals indicate we should be having revenue shortfalls, we should gain in terms of efficiency in the manner in which we collect taxes.

On the issue of expanding the tax revenue base, I agree with Hon. Kambwili that we need to sort out this issue that he has mentioned. Please, let me remind you of the bigger picture. The bigger picture is that what is missing is the economic base to expand the tax revenue. We can be very ruthless to try and collect revenue from everywhere. Yes, perhaps, we could increase the tax revenue by 10 to 15 per cent, but that is not what is going to solve our problems. The problem is that there are not many companies in this country, whether owned by foreigners or Zambians. We just do not have many companies. That is why I give the examples such as if you drive from here to Chipata, once you leave Lusaka, how many companies can you find on the way that pay taxes? Drive from here to Solwezi, once you leave Lusaka between Lusaka and the Copperbelt, how many companies are there? They are very few. This is why the focus for us is to get as much investment into Zambia so that as you drive from Lusaka, Chibombo, Kapiri Mposhi and Kabwe, you should find taxpayers. This is the way to improve the tax base in the country.

Please, when we go around mobilising investment, do not ask why we are favouring foreigners. The point is that we are trying to get as many investors into the country as possible so that they pay taxes and we stop this dependence on donors. It is much easier for us to use money from the taxpayers of Zambia whether they are foreign or local and it is much more complicated if we depend on donors and beg. Therefore, please, let us work together to expand the tax base by doing the fundamental thing which is to expand investment in the country.

Mr Chairperson, I wish to thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

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


Vote 21/01 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 37/01 ─ (Ministry of Finance and National Planning ─ Human Resource and Administration ─ K468,538,342,171).

Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, may I have clarification on page 396, Programme 2, Activity 01─ Recruitment and Placement ─ K181,000,000. I have seen that last year, we provided K228,205,012 to this activity but, this year, it is K181 million. Does the Ministry of Finance and National Planning Headquarters employs every year that it should ask for such colossal sums of money?

Secondly, I have observed that under Programme 2, Activity 09 ─ Staff Welfare ─ K147,972,054, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning is the only ministry that has shown a decrease in this activity. The hon. Minister, in his policy statement, stated that wherever there is a decrease, it means it is not an important activity. Now, why is it that all the ministries have increased allocation to this activity except the Ministry of Finance and National Planning? Thirdly and not least, I would like to find out where the Zambia National Tender Board (ZNTB) and Lusaka Stock Exchange (LuSE), which are major factors in the economy, have been provided for since there are no such allocations in the ministry’s budget.

The Deputy Minister of Finance and National Planning (Ms C. M. Kapwepwe): Mr Chairperson, as regards recruitment and placement, this allocation is for administrative and other logistical expenses pertaining to recruitment and placement of staff. There is a reduction because of financial constraints as well as the scaling down in new recruitments. Placement includes orientation so as to make sure that the new staff are familiar with their new placements. This exercise is on going.

Mr Chairperson, the allocation to Staff Welfare has reduced because some functions have been moved to other activities where they can be monitored better than being lumped under Staff Welfare. As we go on, it will be seen that some allocations, which were previously under Staff Welfare, are appearing under different programmes.

As regards the allocation to LuSE, we have provided for hiving-off of the activity so that the organisation can be self-sustaining or reliant. ZNTB has, of course, become the Zambia Public Procurement Authority (ZPPA) and we see that right at the bottom of page 396 where it is appearing as a new activity.

I thank you, Mr Chairperson.

Vote 37/01 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 37/02 – (Ministry of Finance and National Planning – Budget Office –K5,957,792,011).

Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, I would like an explanation on page 403, Programme 5, Activity 01 – Long-Term Training – K230,068,800. May I find out what has necessitated the increase from K117 million to K230 million which is more than 50 per cent.

Mr C. M. Kapwepwe: Mr Chairperson, the allocation to this activity is meant to cater for costs associated with long-term training. It used to be for two officers in the department, but we have an additional officer scheduled to go for training in the coming year, hence the increase.

37/02 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 37/04 – (Ministry of Finance and National Planning – Government Stores –K4,660,186,900).

Mr Kambwili: Sir, I seek clarification on Programme 2, Activity 01 – Production of Financial Reports – K55,600,000. Production of financial reports is an integral part of the Ministry of Finance and National Planning’s objectives and particularly that we are dealing with stores where we need to produce reports. I have observed that the allocation has reduced from K91.9 million to K55.6 million. Does it mean we are not going to produce financial reports?

Mr C. M. Kapwepwe: Mr Chairperson, this provision takes care of production of reports as the hon. Member has rightly put it. The reduction is due to budgetary constraints which means we just have to be more efficient and effective in the way we carry out this activity but, of course, there is still an allocation and therefore, we will still be able to produce the required reports.

I thank you, Mr Chairperson.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Vote 37/04 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 37/06 (Ministry of Finance and National Planning − Centralised Computer Services Department − K7,571,880,188).

Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on page 407, Programme 2, Activity 01 −Payroll Processing, since a lot of concern has been raised regarding ghost workers. Now that there is no provision for payroll processing, does it mean that there will be no people who will be paid at the ministry to do this work?

Ms C. M. Kapwepwe: Mr Chairperson, this activity has been renamed as Purchase of Pay Statements and Other Payroll Accessories and has moved to Activity 04. Under that activity, there is an adequate provision for the exercise.

I thank you, Sir.

Vote 37/06 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 37/07 (Ministry of Finance and National Planning − Financial Management and Accounting Department − K288,249,670,358).

Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on page 409, Programme 8, Activity 02 − IFMIS Training of End Users. This Government has been saying that the introduction of IFMIS will improve the performance of the Ministry of Finance and National Planning. I would like to find out why there is no provision for this programme and if we have done away with this activity.

Ms C. M. Kapwepwe: Mr Chairperson, the reason there is no provision is that this activity has been moved to Activity 15 − PEMFA Implementation (15) − K5,422,706,250 and not that it has not been provided for. It has just been relocated.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Machungwa (Luapula): Mr Chairperson, on page 410, Programme 10, Activity 02 − Hosting ESAAG Annual Conference 2010 − K1,000,000,000. What is this ESAAG Conference?

Dr Musokotwane: Mr Chairperson, the ESAAG Conference is a conference for the Accountant-Generals of Eastern and Southern Africa. Every year, they hold an annual meeting and this year, Zambia is hosting it.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on page 412, Programme 8, Activity 01 − Reconciliation of Tax Revenues − K3,038,024. I have observed, with concern, that the figure for this activity has been reduced from K49,717,395 to only K3,038,024 and yet we are talking about being efficient in the way we collect our taxes, what is the explanation?

Ms C. M. Kapwepwe: Mr Chairperson, this provision is required to cater for cost of reconciliation of tax revenue. Part of this activity will be covered under the Budget Office. The activity has not been abandoned; it has just been taken to another department.

I thank you, Sir.

VOTE 37/08 – (Ministry of Finance and National Planning – Investment and Debt Management Department – K5,311,906,139).

Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, may I have clarification on page 414, Programme 2,    Activity 03 – Eastern & Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering Group. There is no provision for this important activity in the 2010 Budget. How is the Government going to fight money laundering?

Dr Musokotwane: Mr Chairperson, the reason there is no provision is that there is another country hosting the group next year.

I thank you, Sir.

Vote 37/08 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 37/09 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 37/10 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 37/11 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 37/12 – (Ministry of Finance and National Planning – National Planning Department – K14,351,705,984).

Mr Kambwili: Mr Chairperson, may I have clarification on page 433, Programme 8, Activity 02 – Dissemination of the National Population Policy, Activity 03 – Implementation of the National Population Policy, Activity 04 – Review of Implementation-Population Policy, Activity 05 – Population Policy Implementation Analysis, Activity 07 – Population National Meetings and Conferences and Activity 08 – Regional and International Meetings. May I know why there is no provision for these important aspects of the National Population Policy?

Ms C. M. Kapwepwe: Mr Chairperson, some of these activities have since been undertaken while others have been moved and provided for under different activity lines.

I thank you, Sir.

Vote 37/12 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 37/13 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 37/14 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 26 – (Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Services – K31,717,087,749).


The Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services (Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha): Mr Chairperson, I thank you for allowing me to present the estimates …

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! There is too much talking.

The hon. Minister may continue.

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Chairperson, I thank you for allowing me to present the Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure for the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Services for 2010.

The status and functions of my ministry are contained in the Government Gazette Notice No.547 of 2004.

Its mission is “to effectively facilitate the development of the media in order to enhance free flow of information and freedom of expression for national development”.

Mr Chairperson, 2009 has been a challenging year owing to the world economic crisis. This has impacted on a number of programmes both in terms of human development and the operations of my ministry.

In terms of human development, the restructuring of the Zambia News and Information Services (ZANIS) in the districts has not been implemented, resulting in many districts not being manned. Naturally, this has had an effect on the general performance of my ministry. However, everything will be done to improve service delivery that will include information through printed and electronic materials as well as video shows that depict Government policies through documentaries, programmes and how the people respond.

Mr Chairperson, a skilled and viable media sector is society’s tool for providing citizens with the information they need to make informed choices and bring about sustained Government reform and poverty reduction, especially in countries like ours.

Sir, proper training is at the heart of achieving high professional standards. Today’s journalists deal with a huge quantity and variety of information, sometimes with a number of complexities. Training is, therefore, essential for our staff to effectively communicate such information to our people.

Mr Chairperson, over the last decade, my ministry has been involved in media reforms for both the public and private media. Under this programme, my ministry is speeding up the setting up of the Independent Broadcasting Authority (IBA) whose role will be to regulate broadcasting and ensure fairness and a diversity of views that reflect the Zambian society. I hope to bring, to this august House, the names of the IBA Board of Directors for ratification. In the 2010 Budget, money has been set aside for some logistical and operational arrangements of the authority.

Mr Chairperson, the media is, indeed, one diverse industry. During the year, many people expressed displeasure at the lack of a board to regulate the media and deal with public complaints. The Government advised the media to come together and find a way in which they could regulate themselves. These regulations will help in establishing minimum principles on ethics, accuracy and personal rights, while fully preserving editorial freedom.

My Government keenly awaits the media response. Let me take this opportunity to explain that contrary to the fears expressed by some media houses, media regulation will enhance press freedom and rekindle public confidence.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Chairperson, in order to increase media outreach and explain Government programmes, my ministry is increasing its investment in mobile video vans in the districts. This equipment is targeted for the rural areas where there is a huge information vacuum. When all the districts are fully staffed, this equipment will enable them increase dissemination of information through documentaries and distribution of printed materials.

Sir, with regard to printed information materials, my ministry has already started decentralising the print media. Under the 2009 Budget, we are in the process of procuring a printing press for Kasama. In the 2010 Budget, resources have been set aside for the infrastructure development and purchase of accessories for the machines.

Mr Chairperson, with the ever-changing technology, it is important that my ministry moves with the rest of the world. The linking of ZANIS in the districts to the Wide Area Network will help in accessing information from the rural areas. In next year’s budget, some of the districts will be linked to ZANIS using the fibre optic cable.

Sir, the electronic media will see a major boost with the introduction of the second television channel. This channel, which will start with Lusaka and later expand to other parts of the country, will help in bringing about a diversity of programming both of an informative and entertaining nature.

Next year’s Budget has also considered the improvement of radio reception in the country. The medium reaches out to more people than both television and the print media. Hence, my ministry has set aside money to make the ZNBC shortwave reception better, especially during night time. Apart from this, the programme of installation of FM transmitters for rural districts will start in order to improve radio reception in the country.

Mr Chairperson, my ministry will continue to give financial support to other institutions such as the Zambia Daily Mail, Times of Zambia, Zambia Institute of Mass Communication, Zambia Printing Company and Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation. I take cognisance of previous observations by hon. Members that we should invest more in the public media.

Sir, my ministry is determined to see a healthy media sector that disseminates social and economic information to a wide audience in a meaningful and useful way. Such support also includes developing an enabling environment in which the media can operate. I urge the hon. Members of the House to support our budget and make information a reality for all.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muyanda: Mr Chairperson, I will be very brief and precise. While I support this vote and am very keen to see it through, I would like to ask this Government a question. Why do they want to view their faces only?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: Why do they bring cameras in this House in order to see their own images and not the hon. Members from the Opposition? Are they the only hon. Members of Parliament? No, they are not. We are also hon. Members of Parliament.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! You started very well by addressing them through the Chair. Now you are addressing them directly. Address them through the Chair. Continue, please.

Mr Muyanda: Mr Chairperson, thank you for your good guidance. I am much obliged. The ZNBC Television channel is a property of the Republic of Zambia. There is no need to only show the Republican President on television.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: Even Opposition party presidents must be shown on television because that is one of the tenets of democracy.

Mr Chairperson, in the entire Southern African Region, it has become part of democracy to beam live the parliamentary debates. What is this Government hiding? You permanently bring the cameras here. The people of Zambia want to see their representatives debate on pertinent issues which affect their constituencies.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: There is no justification whatsoever for hiding anything when you know that the Zambians are already on a war path of change. This Government has to go.

Mr Chairperson, self-regulation of the press is a must. There is no need of mincing words. Let the private newspapers run their independent stories. Personally, I was called an idiot, stupid and all sorts of names. Did I ever react? No. Prudently, I ignored because I will never be an idiot. I would like to urge the private media to be more probing and investigative.


Mr Muyanda: You came yesterday, you do not even know anything.


Mr Muyanda: You are a few days old in this House. You have no experience in this august House. Listen to us and we will help you.


Mr Muyanda: Leave the private media alone. When the private media is left to run its own affairs, you will be amazed at how self-disciplined these young men can be. I do not solicit to make news as Raphael Muyanda. Never! I do not run to the pressman to ask him to publish my stories. My only forum for news is here, in this august House. That is all. Why are you harassing the press? Sometimes, you even stone the pressmen. Why? Leave them alone. They will stop the wrongs they are doing. This is a phase and it will come to an end. I wish to urge the young men and women in the private sector of the press world to continue disclosing all the evil that the Government is doing at present …

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: … such as employing unqualified people in the public sector. The Government is doing harm to this country.

Mr Chairperson, there are vans that the Government is proposing to buy for the media institutions according to the hon. Minister’s policy statement. Those vans are intended for misinformation and not information. If the process is in good faith, why is this Government not improving ZNBC to cover every part of Zambia? Why do you want to use ZNBC for your own benefit? It is part of the rigging process of the 2011 Elections. We are well aware that these vans will be hired to rig the elections in 2011. What is the intention?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: We shall remove this Government. Whether you like it or not, that is why we are challenging …

Mr Siliya: On appoint of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Ms Siliya: Mr Chairperson, I do not rise on points of order. However, is this hon. Member of Parliament in order to accuse the Government of harassing the press and rigging elections without evidence? Is he order to allege that the Government is using the Zambia News and Information Services (ZANIS) vehicles to misinform the public? Is he in order to charge that I am not experienced enough while illustrating his experience by equating press freedom to the media calling him an idiot, even if we do not know under what circumstances?

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! When reference was made by Hon. Muyanda about so and so, I did not …


The Deputy Chairperson:  Order! You are disturbing me.

I did not know who he was referring to, but for sure I did notice that somebody on my right had made a remark that prompted him to say what he said. This is my opportunity to advise that when somebody is debating, we should not make running commentaries. When I keep quiet, it boomerangs and comes up again. Hon. Muyanda is expressing a view point on issues and making allegations. I think it is better for one to say something which one can be substantiated. If one does not have something to validate what he or she is saying, then he or she should debate facts. What is being said can be understood even without saying that they have done this or that.

You may continue, please.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: Mr Chairperson, I highly appreciate your guidance.  

Mr Muntanga: State Counsel.

Mr Muyanda: Mr Chairperson, harassing journalists, stoning and beating them and all sorts of innuendoes should stop. The only answer is to privatise the Zambia Daily Mail and Times of Zambia. This Government continues to pour public resources into the Times of Zambia, the Zambia Daily Mail and the ZNBC, which is not showing any democracy at present. What is the use of pouring money into ZNBC, which has become a Government organ, and yet it collects K3,000 as tax from every Zambian who owns a television?

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: What is the tax for? 

Mr Chairperson, cameras are brought here to record the proceedings of the House, and yet, ZNBC merely shows one hon. Minister on the “Today in Parliament” programme. Are you sure that we are doing nothing and not representing anybody in this House? This is why I challenge you to dissolve Parliament so that we go for fresh elections.

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Muyanda: Some of you will not come back.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: You will never come back for re-election.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! Why are you finding it difficult to address them through the Chair? When you say “you,” you invite them to comment, whereas if you say “these people,” they cannot say anything because you are addressing them through the Chair. Can you, please, address the Chair.

Mr Muyanda: Mr Chairperson, I am much obliged.

Mr Chairperson, this Government is not a good Government.


Mr Muyanda: It is a bad Government.


Mr Muyanda: It is a bad Government because it starves the people of Zambia of the truth on what is happening in this august House.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mabenga: Mr Chairperson, of late, I am very worried with the debates coming from this hon. Member, most especially, after the recent workshop held right here in Lusaka at one of the hotels, where we launched Tombwe.


Mr Mabenga: Sir, to me, it appears that there is some special Tombwe that is coming from there which has got into his head.


Mr Mabenga: That is why we see this behaviour coming out. I am very worried and I need your serious ruling on this matter so that we can scale down.


The Deputy Chairperson: Order! Let us be civil in our debate. I am also getting concerned because the language we are using seems to be one of confrontation.

 Hon. Members: Tombwe!

The Deputy Chairperson: No! It is not Tombwe. I do not know what Tombwe means.


The Deputy Chairperson: Order! Could we be civil?

 May Hon. Muyanda, please, continue.

Mr Muyanda: Mr Chairperson, I am much obliged once again.

 Sir, I will be very civil in my debate.

 Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: I will be very civil as usual. Eight years of passing good laws is not a mean experience. Some people have only three years in this august House. Therefore, I feel pity for them that they are in a hurry to acquire experience.

Mr Chairperson, independent broadcasting has been a song of this Government for the past eight years. You should bring it here because you cannot be singing the same song year in, year out. In each budget that comes here, the Government is actively involved in the independent broadcasting issue.  Which independent broadcasting? You are talking to the nation and you are also starving it. As long as the Government continues to starve the people of Zambia of the truth about what is prevailing and the corruption which is in this country, this Government is doing itself more harm than good.

 The late President, Dr Mwanawasa was very categorical in admitting that there was corruption in this country. He was very frank. What did they do next? It was not long. Some of our colleagues were supposed to be fired, but praised the good Lord, the President had departed. Where is his legacy?

 Hon. Opposition Members: Nowhere!

Mr Muyanda: Mr Chairperson, may I also ask under information, His Excellency, President Banda apologised to the nation for the critical shortage of fuel ...

Mr Sikota, SC.: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: A point of order is raised. 

Mr Sikota, SC.: Mr Chairperson, I would like to thank you for according me this opportunity to raise this point of order.

Sir, I think I am one of the few who can truly say that I rarely rise on a point of order.

 Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikota, SC.: Mr Chairperson, is the hon. Member on the Floor in order to say that we should praise the Lord that the President departed? I need your serious ruling.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

 The Deputy Chairperson: Order! The hon. Member for Sinazongwe was not in order.  This explains why we should be careful in what we are saying. It is my conviction that Mr Muyanda did not mean evil in what he was saying except that they way he said it can be interpreted the way somebody has interpreted it. Therefore, let us be careful in the use of our language.

 May the hon. Member for Sinazongwe, please, continue.

 Mr Muyanda: Mr Chairperson, indeed, I appreciate the concern from the learned counsel. What I meant is that I am sorry that I miss President Levy Mwanawasa, SC. who is departed.

Mr Mwiimbu: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: That is my stand because corruption has reached unprecedented levels.

 Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: When he said this, the whole country was awake and they were worried that there would be reshuffles, but no reshuffles took place. However, again, when diesel and petrol disappeared as they have now, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting continued to misinform the country through the ZNBC.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muyanda: There were statements like now trucks were rolling in when there was no diesel.

 Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

(Debate adjourned)




(Progress reported)


The House adjourned at 1917 hours until 1430 hours on Thursday, 12th November, 2009.




180. Mr E. C. Mwansa (Chifunabuli) asked the Minister of Works and Supply:

(a) whether a contractor had been identified for the construction of the Mutondo Causeway on the Samfya/Lubwe/Kasaba/Luwingu Road;

(b) how much it would cost to complete the construction of the Mutondo Causeway; and

(c) what the contract period for the completion of the project was.

The Minister of Works and Supply (Mr Mulongoti): Mr Speaker, the tender for the construction of the Mutondo Causeway is under evaluation. The estimated cost for the construction of the Mutondo Causeway is K5,000,000,000.00, and the intended completion period is six (6) months.

I thank you, Sir.