Debates- Wednesday, 27th February, 2008

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Wednesday, 27th February, 2008

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]






Mr Speaker: I wish to inform you that in the absence of His Honour the Vice-President who is attending to other national duties, Hon. G. W. Mpombo, MP, Minister of Defence, has been appointed Acting Leader of Government Business in the House from today, Wednesday, 27th to Friday, 29th February, 2008.

Thank you.

Hon. Members: hear, hear!




Mr I. Banda (Lumenzi) asked the Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources:

(a) why hunting fees were increased threefold in 2007 thus making the fees unaffordable to ordinary Zambians who reside in Game Management Areas (GMAs);

(b) how many residents from Lundazi District bought hunting licences in the 2007 hunting season;

(c) how the figure at (b) above compares with the 2006 hunting season; and

(d) whether the Government would consider the following measures in areas where human and animals live side by side:

(i) involvement of local people in determining hunting fees; and 
(ii) establishment of butcheries to enable residents access game meat under hygienic conditions
The Deputy Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources (Mr Chilembo): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that the hunting fees were increased in 2007, in order for Zambia Wild Life Authority (ZAWA) to generate sufficient funds for use in wildlife conservation. Sir, from 2004 up to 2007, ZAWA has been selling animals based on Statutory Instrument No. 46 of 2004. It was found that the cost of managing wildlife had been increasing due to the various economic factors while the source of funds had remained unchanged.

It is important to inform this House that the funds, apart from wildlife conservation, are also used for community development projects initiated by the local communities through revenue sharing between ZAWA and local communities in Game Management Areas.

Mr Speaker, with regard to (b), fifteen residents from Lundazi District bought hunting licences during the 2007 hunting season;

With regard to (c), the comparison of figures referred to in question (a) is as stipulated in the table below:

SPECIES (GAME ANIMALS)                     2006 (ZMK)                           2007 (ZMK)
Baboon                                                     9,000                                     50,040
Buffalo                                                      270,000                                 2,500,020
Bushbuck                                                  30,060                                   200,160
Bush pig                                                    15,120                                   80,100
Duicker, Common                                       15,120                                  160,020
Grysbok                                                     10,080                                  160,120
Hartebeest                                                 80,100                                  800,100
Impala                                                         30,060                                  200,100
Porcupine                                                   15,120                                  42,120
Puku                                                           40,140                                   350,100
Reedbuck                                                   45,000                                   400,140
Warthog                                                     50,040                                   400,140

Mr Speaker, currently, Government has no modality for involvement of local people in the review of animal fees. However, it is important to note that Government consults the local people in determining hunting quotas and other issues related to the management and utilisation of wildlife through the Community Resource Boards (CRBs).

Mr Speaker, according to the Zambia Wildlife Act No. 12 of 1998, the licensee who has hunted an animal has to get a permit from ZAWA and is responsible for the sale of the meat.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr I. Banda: Mr Speaker, I would like to know whether the increment in hunting fees did not encourage poaching and also denied citizens from eating the God given natural resources.


Mr Chilembo: Mr Speaker, to the contrary, there is no evidence that the poaching had increased and there was no denial of our citizens from benefiting from these resources. As the answer clearly states, there is a programme where ZAWA shares this money with the community through the Community Resource Boards (CRBs). In reality, the more money is realised, the more the communities benefit because...

Mr Kambwili: Question!

Mr Chilembo: … their percentage attracts more money.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sikazwe (Chimbamilonga): Mr Speaker, arising from the hon. Minister’s answer, I would like to know how frequent the ministry through ZAWA are auditing the Community Resource Boards books because there is abuse of funds as was mentioned by the President in Mambwe.

Mr Chilembo: Mr Speaker, I can confirm that it is on a regular basis that these books are audited and it is because of that that we are able to detect where things may go amiss. In any event, investigations to what you are alluding to found that, in fact, there was no abuse of moneys by ZAWA. If you followed the story up to the end, you would have known all this. 

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Lubinda (Kabwata): Mr Speaker, according to the Constitution, all Government revenues are supposed to be appropriated through this House. Can I find out from the hon. Minister why the revenues from hunting licences have never been provided for in the Budget? It is not appropriated for in appropriation in aid and not in revenue. How is this ministry ensuring that the revenues that are for the people of Zambia are spent in accordance with the desires of their Parliament when it is not provided for in the Budget?

The Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources (Mr Kaingu): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank Hon. Lubinda for that observation. An arrangement has been entered by my ministry with the people in those game management areas that we should discourage poaching. So, this arrangement that we have entered into with the …

Hon. Opposition Members: Answer the question!

Mr Kaingu: I am coming to the question. I want to explain to you so that you understand. An arrangement has been entered into and the portion for ZAWA, has a component of 10 per cent to the Treasury.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muyanda (Sinazongwe): Mr Speaker, may the hon. Minister tell us whether Government has any programme of encouraging indigenous people to engage into wildlife breeding or game ranching in order to neutralise poaching and other bad vises.

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, I would like to confirm to this House that we are working on modalities to help Zambians to start going into game management.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Machungwa (Luapula): Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister aware that if he increases the licence fees for people to hunt these animals beyond what the people can afford, we are, in fact, increasing poaching as our people in the rural areas who have to  eat some meat from time to time will not afford.

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, I understand the insatiable appetite by Hon. Machungwa for game meat.


Mr Kaingu: I answered a question in this House where I put it clearly that this year, we are going to make some amendments to accommodate the Zambians.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mbewe (Chadiza): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister …

Mr Kaingu looking at Mr Mbewe

Mr Mbewe: …it seems he worried, he is looking at me.


Mr Speaker: Order!

Mr Mbewe: Sir, I would like to know why Government cannot decentralise the issuance of licences to individual game parks. In the same vein why can the ministry not make a deliberate policy to have a certain percentage of the income from the licences ploughed back in the national parks to improve the roads and other facilities?

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, I want to assure the hon. Member that I am not worried about his question.


Mr Kaingu: We do not want to decentralise the issuance of licences because we know very well that it will be abused. As I talk to this House, I want to say that actually the money that we give to the CRB is being abused. Therefore, we will not decentralise because if we do so, the whole thing will be abused.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr C. K. B. Banda (Chasefu): Mr Speaker, may the hon. Minister tell the House what measures, if any, his ministry will take to ensure that animals do not destroy crops of people in Chasefu Constituency, especially in the area bordering Chama South Constituency since the people are not allowed to kill the animals?

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, now that we know that animals are destroying crops in Chasefu, I will converse with the Director General of Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) to intensify patrols.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mrs Musokotwane (Katombola): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether there are any plans, now or later, to improve the roads in our game management areas and game parks to make them into all weather roads so that hunting and tourism can be all weather for tourists.

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, I want to confirm that this Government is working very hard to improve infrastructure, and that includes roads in game management areas and national parks. You will note that there is an allocation of funds for infrastructure development in these areas in the Yellow Book.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Kapeya (Mpika): Mr Speaker, arising from the hon. Minister’s answer that local people are not taken on board when it comes to determining hunting fees, could he tell us why Government or the Ministry has allowed professional hunters and safari operators from abroad to have a big say in determining the hunting fees for both local and non-residential applicants? Is it because they come with dollars?

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, it is not true that safari hunters determine the hunting fees. The prices of animals are determined by ZAWA.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sichamba (Isoka West): Mr Speaker, according to the hon. Minister, in 2006, the buffalo was going at K270,000. In 2007, it is at K2.5 million. Looking at the increment, does the hon. Minister think that the poor peasant farmers will afford to buy the animals at such an amount?

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, I have already stated that we are going to work out prices for residents, non-residents and district licences.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


176. Mr D. Mwila (Chipili) asked the Minister of Justice when Government would construct houses for local court Justices at Mwenda and Mutipula local courts in Chipili Parliamentary Constituency.

The Minister of Justice (Mr Kunda, SC): Mr Speaker, Government has no plans to construct houses for local court Justices at Mwenda and Mutipula …


Mr Speaker: Order! There shall be silence in the Chamber.

Will the hon. Minister continue, please.

Mr Kunda: Mr Speaker, I was saying that Government has no plans to construct houses for local court Justices at Mwenda and Mutipula in Chipili Parliamentary Constituency. The current Government policy is that local court Justices should provide their own residential accommodation as they are paid housing allowance.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr D. Mwila: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether he has tried to pass through Mwenda and Mutipula to check on the welfare of the Justices because there are no houses to rent.

Mr Kunda: Mr Speaker, as I have stated, the local court Justices should provide their own accommodation.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chimbaka (Bahati): Mr Speaker, knowing that the local court Justices are not privy to accommodation by nature of their contracts, are there plans to consider construction of houses for court clerks who are civil servants?

Mr Kunda: Mr Speaker, that is a new question and I will need confirmation because I do not want to mislead the House.

I thank you, Sir.




VOTE 18 ─ (Judiciary ─ Headquarters ─ K128,419,920,971).

(Consideration resumed)

Mr Matongo (Pemba): Madam Chairperson, when we adjourned yesterday, I was advancing a point that we want to see a truly…


Mr Matongo: Hon. Minister of Justice, I am waiting for you to finish your consultations.

Madam Chairperson, the hon. Minister of Justice is now paying attention.

The Chairperson: Order!

Mr Matongo: Madam Chairperson, I was saying…


Mr Matongo: … I was elected to speak. Madam Chairperson, I was saying that the hon. Minister of Justice has considerably performed well and I, therefore, hope that he will continue on this trend.

Madam, I was on the point where I was saying that I personally, have faith and the people I represent in Pemba also have faith that, in fact, he will ensure that there is a  very clear separation of power of the Executive, the Judiciary and the Legislature. Therefore, Madam, all three forms of Government that constitute the Republic of Zambian shall conform to certain orders of good governance in total unison.

Madam Chairperson, I was saying and I emphasise that for the three arms of Government to operate correctly, no one of them should usurp power beyond that would be or is allocated in the current Constitution. Hon. Minister, your challenge is that we want an independent Judiciary, a Judiciary that has a top Chief Justice and the lowest official of the court having a certain understating or resonating feeling of the law being applied to everybody regardless of status. We want a Chief Justice who shall be respected by this House and whoever is President on Independence Avenue.

Madam Chairperson, in order to ensure complete independence of the Judicature, Legislative Assembly or National Assembly and indeed the Executive, there should be mutual respect. We therefore, request that there should be mutual respect that goes by two things which are; competent trained people in the Judiciary, acceptable public service as I demanded yesterday and a Parliament that truly plays its role.

Secondly, it should be a democratic dispensation that would ensure that besides a human resource, the financial obligations of the other two wings of Government, the Legislature and the Judiciary get the income tax or the share of revenue that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning collects in a proportionate manner that will make them operate.

Madam Chairperson, critically, looking at this budget now, the Executive takes it all because they have to develop the country. However, to image that the Judiciary including the Ministry of Justice, by my calculation, only gets 0.93 per cent of the K13.7 trillion is emigration of the reality.

 Madam Chairperson, the 1.2 per cent of the K13.7 trillion that Parliament gets is very little and we should be more serious than that. Madam, I want to request the hon. Minister of Justice and other hon. Ministers to ensure that a percentage of the National Budget be properly distributed for these two wings to do their jobs adequately. I have no doubt that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning is alive to this. Like any other critical mind and I would like to believe that he has a critical mind, he demands for what you are going to use this money for. I would like to say to him that it is time to ensure that the allocation of resources to these other wings of Government, if you do not want as Government of MMD to be called dictatorial should be on an agreed percentage as the British and the Canadians do.

Madam Chairperson, in these countries, the Head of the Judiciary who is an administrative officer equivalent to a Permanent Secretary or controlling officer need not go on bended knees to ask what he needs to run the Judiciary. All those responsible here or there need not go before the director of budget or to the Permanent Secretary Budget Office begging. Once percentages are given in this Chamber and are authorised, let the three institutions go and run. I have no doubt Hon. Magande understands what I am talking about and he is discernable enough to appreciate the help if he does that and I know he will after we have amended the Constitution. That is the way to run a democratic and liberal country which Zambia is trying to do. There is no way this Manda Hill can be run at 1.2 per cent of K13.7 Trillion. There is no way the Judiciary on Independence Avenue can run adequately and efficiently and there is an element there of some kind of corruption in the local courts with 0.93 per cent. They are not angels.

Madam Chairperson, I want to state that in the three arms of Government, there have been stoppages of work more than often in the Judiciary and in the public service and that tells you that there is something wrong. You should tell me why the top hierarchy of the Judiciary earn so much. I will not go into details over that because you know it. Madam, from the Magistrates and below, they earn very little and as such we need to close the gap in the interest of not having strikes in the Judiciary.

 Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Matongo: We need to do that. How do we explain a magistrate getting a housing allowance that is so small against a 100 per cent of basic salary which a Judge gets? Really, that is not understandable. This is because of the wrong system of salary arrangements where top hierarchy in the security can just demand for this and that and they get it. Next, the top hierarchy in the Judiciary will demand for this and that and they will also get it.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Matongo: The ordinary mind perceives that they are corrupting the Head of State in case of a judgment that may be there.

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

Mr Matongo: In any case those salaries have not been adjusted for sometime now because Manda Hill does not have the capacity to do so and it is because it is full of decent women and men who have decided to save this country selflessly for whatever the media would want to think. We have worked at peace but shall we suffer forever to remain quiet to do a decent job or you will only understand to be told the hard way to do things? We refuse to do that. Hon Leader of Government Business in the House, I urge you to understand that ….

The Chairperson: Order! Speak through the Chair and not through the Leader of the House.

Mr Matongo: Madam Chairperson, I want you to understand and…


Mr Matongo:…through you, the Leader of Government Business in the House that unless this distortion of conditions of service in the three wings of Government is dealt with, you will have extremely difficult times to come ahead, come 2010.

 Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr D. Mwila: Niba mubwekeshya kunuma!

Mr Matongo: Madam Chairperson, through you, I want the Leader of Government to understand, appreciate and deal with this matter.

Mr Hamududu: Yes!

Mr Matongo: He must do one thing before we get back to the National Constitution Commission (NCC), by instructing the Secretary to the Cabinet to establish a salaries commission. Do that now, it will help you and us because it is hurting our people. When we come into power, we do not want to spend time on salaries. We want to spend more time on development because that is what we understand best on this side of this House.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Matongo: Therefore, we will assign this little job to you. Do it now.


Mr Matongo: Madam Chairperson, I have always praised my good friends on your right and I am not ashamed about that. We may differ in ideological perception of governance of this Republic.


Major Chizhyuka: Hear, hear!

Mr Matongo: However, when it comes to common sense, they measure up to our thinking. We do not want to continuously lead from here. We advised this Government about windfall tax, what has happened?


Mr Matongo: They have done it too late and too small. Now we are advising them to deal with the human resource of this country. Equitability of conditions of service for the three arms of Government shall bring eternal peace in this Republic. If you decide not to do the correct thing, there shall be conflict, for money is power whether you like it or not.

I thank you, Madam.

Hon. Opposition Members: hear, hear!

Mr Malama (Mfuwe): Madam Chairperson, thank you for giving me this opportunity to add a word to this Vote. Madam, I will be very brief because I just want to submit one or two points.

Madam, I want to start by saying that sometimes when people take over some of these offices, they tend to forget where they are coming from which is very bad. If any person in an office cannot look back to see where he is coming from, then he is a problem and cannot deliver and is not fit to hold office.

Madam Chairperson, I say so because it is important that when you take over an office you should look around and see the major problems and how you would be communicating from the top coming down so that you see how you can gather problems and attend to them.

Madam, some constituencies are not remembered when it comes to budgeting and this just shows that the system of budgeting is not good. If the budgeting system was good definitely some of these departments would have been consulting Members of Parliament so that they get proper information. For example, when Disaster Management Unit (DMU) sends its members of staff to collect information which they later submit and use for food distribution, they fail to reach far fetched areas or remote areas. This results in the needy people who are in these remote areas getting very little or nothing at all. Sometimes these officers ask for information from the people at the district but as a Member of Parliament, Madam Chairperson, I would struggle to meet the electorate to get proper information from them. You can see how terrible the system is.

Madam Chairperson, last year in this House, I asked the Minister of Justice on whether he was aware that the people of Chief Mukungula were hearing court cases under a tree.

Mr D. Mwila: Shame! Shame!

Mr Malama: During rainy season, they would stop gathering to hear those cases because of the rains.

I wrote a letter to the Minister of Justice about this and he responded by saying that he would submit it to the Judiciary. Madam, when I was going through this budget, there is nothing allocated for this purpose.

Mr D. Mwila: Tamuli!

Mr Malama: There is nothing for the whole of Mpika District.

Madam Chairperson, I would appreciate if the Minister of Justice could go to Mpika District, Chief Mukungula’ s area and announce to the people to continue gathering under a tree …

Mr D. Mwila: Hear, hear!

Mr Malama: … because this year again their area is not in the budget.

Mr D. Mwila: Hear, hear!

Mr Malama: I would appreciate if that initiative could be taken.

Mr Muntanga: Hear, hear! Tomorrow!

Mr Malama: Madam Chairperson, some structures in rural areas are simple. For example, to put iron sheets on a roof of a court structure in a chiefdom might only cost K10 million.

Mr D. Mwila: Yafula! K5 million probably!

Mr Malama: I am reminded that it is too much. Thank you very much. Since my people are united, we can ask them to organise blocks and look for builders who can do the job.

Madam Chairperson, I am trying to say that if we are given something little like K40 million, we can do something with that money. What is the solution then if this year has again come and will pass without allocating anything little for the people in the rural areas? Surely, even if the MMD Government goes there to ask for votes, are they going to be looked at?

Hon. Opposition Members: No! No!

Mr Malama: Even where you see that you can lose votes, you do not want to attend to the problem. You can be in power as long as you deliver. Some people would tell you that you cannot be in power forever but I am telling you that you can be in power forever as long as you deliver.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr D. Mwila: You are not delivering!

Mr Malama: If you cannot deliver now, …

Mr D. Mwila: You will have to go!

Mr Malama: … then there is a very big question mark…



Mr Malama: …as to whether you will get it in 2011.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr D. Mwila: Kuya bebele!

Mr Hamududu: Abaleya!

Mr Malama: This is just an advice and it is not too late.


Mr Malama: Madam Chairperson, when we say resources should be shared according to the constituencies we know what we are talking about. I do not know why the people who sit to make budgets easily forget some constituencies. As Government of the day, the best you can do is to share resources according to constituencies.

Mr D. Mwila: Hear, hear!

Mr Malama: By doing so, then you know that you are touching all the corners of this country.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Malama: Madam Chairperson, the hon. Members seated in this House, come from all corners of this country and if resources are shared equally, things will be all right. I, therefore, urge Government to help the people in my constituency and no complaint will come from there.

Madam Chairperson, we have been saying that this Government must increase the Constituency Development Fund (CDF). If it is increased, you will see how much we will do in our constituencies. They may not appreciate that point but as long as they continue forgetting about some of these constituencies, some of us, each time we stand in this House, will be demanding for the increase of CDF. I know that if I am given enough CDF, I can construct a local court.

Madam Chairperson is it really fair for this department to completely ignore despite having received a letter from a Member of Parliament, who is a proper eye for the constituency. Is it really fair again for the people of Chief Mukugule to continue gathering under the tree whenever they want to hear their cases? Normally, during rainy season they suspend the court cases and when this is done, all those who have committed crimes do not walk freely until the rainy season is over when they start gathering to hear cases again which is not good.


The Chairperson: Order! It seems the House is not interested in this Vote at all because the House is extremely noisy. Can we listen to the hon. Member debating.

Mr Malama: Madam Chairperson, lastly, if the ministry cannot provide money for construction of local courts, I wonder whether the hon. Minister can stand here and talk about furniture because even in local courts which are in towns, we see broken furniture and it is a shame.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Malama: If money cannot be provided for the construction of a local court in my area, then it is a waste of time to even talk about money for furniture. This is because what should come first is money for construction of the structure and then we start talking about the furniture.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hear, hear, na toyilet.


Mr Malama: Therefore, you can see that we have a long a way to go, but to tell you the truth, Madam Chairperson, running the country is not something that should actually worry us. The biggest problem is that we are too selfish, for lack of a better term. We are too selfish and because we are selfish, we fail to use other people because we think that other people cannot do it better unless, I go there, then, things can move.

Madam, as long as we stick to this, then we will continue wasting time talking about same things. When you look at the debates of hon. Members, in most cases, they debate on issues, which if followed, you would see things changing in this country, but we do not want to change things. I am sure that my colleagues there are worried because even in their constituencies very little is happening. This is the fact.

Madam Chairperson, I thank you.


Mr Kanyanyamina (Kanchibiya): Madam Chairperson, I thank you for according me this chance to contribute to the debate on this Vote. In my brief debate I have some advice to offer to Government.

Madam Chairperson, to begin with, in Northern Province the High Court only sits three times a year, and yet, this is one of the largest provinces in the country. How do you expect to instil justice to the people because the learned people, including the hon. Minister say, ‘justice delayed is justice denied’. If you look at the situation today in Zambia, there is no justice for the poor but for the rich there is justice but it is very expensive looking at the amounts of money which people have to pay to the lawyers. There is no justice for the poor. Over a flimsy case, they will be locked up and by the time they are proved innocent, they will have been behind the bars for more than a year.

Madam Chairperson, Northern Province starting from Kaputa, Chilubi, Chinsali, Nakonde and Mpika itself, where the previous debator was bemoaning the lack of court buildings and the rest, in all these areas the High Court only sits three times in a year. I find it very funny although the hon. Minister thinks everything is normal. Anyway, I am not surprised because there are certain ministries that I as a Member from the Opposition, though I do not regard myself as Member of the Opposition, but as a leader of Zambia, where I can go and knock at the door and know I will come out with a positive answer to deliver to the Zambian people.

Hon. Opposition Member: Ministry of Local Government and Housing!

Mr Kanyanyamina: Certainly. For example, Ministry of Local Government and Housing, I can go there and I will be given what I want. However, for certain ministries, it is a waste of time for me to drive my car and knock at the door. Let it be, God will judge.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hammer!

Mr Kanyanyamina: Madam Chairperson, how can you live with a free conscience when you are denying the people of Mpika money to build courts of law? You have denied the province money to put up simple structures. The people in Mpika like the previous debator said are not lazy and we believe in self reliance. All we need is a bit of money from the Government to buy iron sheets and cement. The blocks and the rest can be moulded by the people. We are not going to kneel down and licking shoes to get favours from the Government. You can be with your resources in the ministry, we will continue suffering and converge under trees to see justice prevailing.

Madam Chairperson, Kabinga has been bemoaning a court building for more than five years now. This area is unfortunately in the plains where people can meet under trees. It is just an open area.


Mr Kanyanyamina: Madam Chairperson, you can send Government wings to go and investigate, you will be shocked to see where people gather for court hearings. By so doing, you are just delaying justice and punishing your own people. It is not fair and normal to see development concentrated only in one area. Are you not afraid of God?


Mr Kanyanyamina: What kind of justice are you talking about? I fail to understand what is going on in this country. This is what I call circus in politics because there is selection in wealth distribution that only members of the ruling party should get resources, the Opposition should not. You are just punishing the Zambian people because Kanyanyamina is just a choice of the people of Kanchibiya.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kanyanyamina: Kindly, think of the people of Kabinga who are more than 30,000 who also deserve a share of the national cake. Kindly, give us some money for a simple court structure. For once have passion for your people, we know you listen. Give us something but although there is nothing in this budget, we know you can manoeuvre somehow. Show us your stamina in this case.


Mr Kanyanyamina:  Madam Chairperson, the prisons in Mpika District were built a long time ago during the time of the colonial masters like Sir Roy Welensky but up to now these have never been updated. The building which was used by game guards to keep trophies and other things is now being used as a court.  I come from Mpika and I am stating facts. The building is full of cracks and it is just through the grace of God that the people who go to hear cases there, including the magistrates they could have met very serious fate there. We are luck Zambia is not on the line of a rift valley where we have these traumas, earthquakes and things like that, otherwise, that building could have been condemned.

Madam Chairperson, Mpika Prison was meant for forty inmates, but now, you can imagine three quarters of the people …


The Chairperson: Order! What we need hon. Members is to focus on what we ought to talk. The prisons were dealt with. Let us concentrate on the Judiciary.

Will the hon. Member continue, please.

Mr Kanyanyamina: To qualify the point on prisons the staff like the judges, lawyers …

The Chairperson: Order! We do not qualify or justify, we just move on to the next point.

Mr Kanyanyamina: The people in Mpika District have suffered due to the lapses in the number of magistrates caused by death which, unfortunately, we cannot control. Most of the magistrates have been dying causing congestion in prisons. Instead of having forty inmates we have 200 inmates and therefore, the hon. Minister in charge of this has to give us more court staff in Mpika District as most of the cases we have are as a result of poaching because we are rich in wildlife.

Mr Munaile: You are poachers.

Mr Kanyanyamina: Madam Chairperson, hunting fees have also gone up and this means that the only alternative for people, which I do not support, is to avert paying fees which is very bad. However, people have no choice, they have to benefit from the meat.


Mr Kanyanyamina: I hope the hon. Minister will look into this matter.

Madam Chairperson, having said so, the Ministry of Justice should show justice by being realistic, practical and friendly to us so that when we knock at its doors, we will surely come out with something like is the case when we knock at the doors of the Ministries of Community Development and Social Services, Local Government and Housing and other ministries. When we go to these ministries, we even know for sure that we will be served. However, things at the Ministry of Justice are too complicated as though it is not responsible for justice.


Mr Kanyanyamina: With these few words, I thank you, Madam.
Mr Kambwili (Roan): Madam Chairperson, I thank you for according me this opportunity to add my voice and subsequently support the budget for the Ministry of Justice. In doing so, I wish to raise the following points and I will be very brief and moderate.

Madam Chairperson, this Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) Government has failed to regulate and supervise the local courts and must be held responsible for the corruption that is in the local courts. Local courts from inception were meant to look at traditional disputes such as breaking of marriages, insulting in the community and witchcraft. Today, the local courts are handling much more complicated matters even when their operations are not changed.

I am appealing to the hon. Minister of Justice to overhaul the entire system of the local courts. People are being abused in the local courts. I wonder whether the hon. Minister has taken time to go and sit in the local court in his constituency and listen to the insults that come from local court justices. When people go to the magistrate court, they are treated with respect and this is the same with the High Court. However, when you go to the local courts, these local court justices treat people like nobodies and this is very serious.

Mr D. Mwila: Hear, hear!


Mr Kambwili: When the local courts were established, local court justices were drawn from retired civil servants and miners because the nature of the job required that they have experience in the day to day living of the community. Today you find somebody who is thirty years old, and who has never worked in the civil service, is a local court justice and because his or her predecessors were insulting, he or she also starts insulting people who are even older than him or her. When you go to the courts, you find an old man who is maybe eighty years old appearing before this thirty years old local court justice telling him, “Iwe, ni mucilye muno. Ikalapanshi ulicipuba.” How can we allow such nonsense in the courts?

The Chairperson: Order! Meaning?

Mr Kambwili: In local courts …


The Chairperson: Order!

Mr Kambwili: …people are being told, “Hey you sit down. Are you foolish?”. Surely, do people go to court to be insulted or for justice? This Government has failed to supervise these people and they are behaving like there is lawlessness in Zambia. This has to come to an end. We must train these people. In fact, I would submit that a minimum qualification be introduced for local court justices.

Madam Chairperson, I am sure you heard of one case in my constituency where a miner blew himself up with explosives. It was due to the negligence and corruption of a local court justice. This man was sued by his wife for divorce and the local court justice in the judgment stated that he should vacate his house, give it to the wife, pay the wife K10 million and continue paying her a monthly maintenance of K250,000. Now, according to my understanding, when somebody sues for divorce it is the person suing who should compensate the other party.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: However, what happened is that this man was treated like a nobody. In the end, because of frustration he went and got explosives and blew himself up. We lost a life in my constituency because this Government has failed to regulate and supervise the local courts.

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

Mr Kambwili: There is another issue where another man has been told to vacate his house and leave it to the wife who also sued him for divorce. When we went to do a search, we found that most of the things that this man was submitting during trial were not being taken down. When these local court justices want a case to go in favour of somebody, they have a tendency of not taking down whatever the other party is submitting so that when he or she goes to the magistrate’s court they have a justification that he or she did not represent himself or herself fairly or correctly.

This is serious and I would like to submit that some of the people being picked to be local court justices have no experience and some of them cannot literally construct a sentence. When you look at what they write in those files, you will feel very bad and sad. Therefore, I would suggest that they are given recorders so that as people are submitting in courts, recordings are done and after the court sessions, judgment would be based on these recordings for the sake of fair judgement. We cannot allow a situation whereby people are submitting and the local court justice is not writing at all or is only writing what the other person in whom he or she has interest in is submitting.

We are going to lose more lives if we do not fight the corruption in the local courts. Let us go back to the drawing board and start appointing qualified people from retired civil servants and miners and then we are going to achieve the purpose for which the local courts were created. This idea of taking people who are twenty five years old to thirty years old and have nothing to do, to become local court justices must come to an end. The local court man in Luanshya is just about thirty four years old.

The Chairperson: Order! You are going a little too far. That man may not come here to defend himself. Can you talk in general.

You may continue.

Mr Kambwili: Some local court justices in my constituency are about thirty four years old.


Mr Kambwili: I have known them since I have been living in Luanshya and they have never worked anywhere.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: They have been katolalas in town asking for money but today you find them working as local court justices. This is very sad. One wonders how these local court justices are employed. I wonder whether there is a system for employing local court justices. I am urging this Government to seriously overhaul the entire system of the local courts if we are going to see justice prevailing.

Madam Chairperson, let me move on to salaries for the magistrates and judges. Surely, we are aware that magistrates handle a lot of sensitise criminal cases everyday of their lives in employment. Whenever they wake up, what they do is hear criminal cases but how much do we pay them for that? Do we want them to become corrupt and then start complaining that magistrates are corrupt? These are people with integrity and need to be paid well just like we are paying the judges. What is the explanation for having almost a 200 per cent difference in salaries between the magistrates and the High Court judges?

Madam Chairperson, look at the money they are given as housing allowances. Do you want them to start renting servant’s quarters? If they start renting servant’s quarters, the repercussion will be very bad. It will be corruption because they would want to keep their integrity and by so doing, they will solicit for bribes in order for them to get money to pay decent accommodation. Let us look at this issue with the seriousness it deserves.

Madam Chairperson, we have lamented on the Floor of this House, but we are told that it is being looked at. For how long are you going to look at it? Can you, please, as a matter of urgency sort out the salary differences between the Judges and the Magistrates because Magistrates also deserve better lifestyles.

With these few words, I thank you.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikazwe (Chimbamilonga): Madam Chairperson, I stand to support the Vote before us and in doing so, I am very thankful to hear that the Judiciary is becoming independent. This field is too technical and people have failed to understand it. Often times, we think that the Judiciary is just magistrate and supreme Courts.

Madam Chairperson, I want to discuss administration and I will give examples of Northern Province which is the biggest province in Zambia. The point from Kasama to Kaputa is 500 kilometres Nakonde to Isoka is the same distance. When we consider the court circuit at K80 million per year, surely, Madam, are we expecting this circuiting to be effective? Will they manage to go round the twelve districts in the province?

This Vote must be considered seriously and if it is possible, we can move some money from somewhere to go towards these courts in the province. As debated earlier by Hon. Matongo, we should give the Judiciary enough money to do their work properly. Madam Chairperson, when I was learning civics in 1984, we were told that the Judiciary was an independent body …


Mr Sikazwe: In 1984 I was in Form 3 and I was taught that the Judiciary is an independent body in Zambia. Even the policy statement by the hon. Minister of Justice stated that they are offloading the Judiciary Department to become autonomous so that they are not blamed to be favouring MMD or Patriotic Front (PF) and others as has been alleged in the past. I commend the hon. Minister for this move.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikazwe: Madam Chairperson, although we are talking about the autonomous of the Judiciary Department my worry is the funding which is very meager. Madam, the K128 billion allocated to the entire Judiciary is not enough. As already stated the K80 million allocated to Northern Province for court circuiting is nothing. In Kasama a litre of diesel is about K8,000 and you need about 200 litres going and coming back from Kaputa. If you multiply this by twelve districts in Northern Province alone, what can K80 million do? Are you telling us that the provincial local court officers or some other officials standing in for the judicial department do not give the ministry the correct information when budgeting? If you have provincial local court officers to advise the judicial department, they cannot arrive at K80 million for court circuiting.

Madam Chairperson, I now want to discuss the allocation at headquarters for inspection of courts for the whole country pegged at K180 million. Madam Chairperson from Lusaka to Nsumbu I use one and half drums of diesel to cover 1,300 kilometres. With K180 million, very few places will be covered. We need a lot of money to enable anybody to inspect Nsumbu, Shang’ombo, Mwinilunga or Mwami in Eastern Province. What is K180 million for the whole nation? Is it that some technocrats are not advising the ministry correctly so that it becomes a shame of the Government to be under funding the judicial department? That is a question to be answered by you, hon. Minister.
Madam Chairperson, Nsumbu in Kaputa District is one of the biggest districts but we have only four local courts and not a single magistrate court. I am not drawing you into my debate Madam I just want to discuss Mukupa, Katandula and Kuputa in your constituency. Nsumbu and Nsama are servicing about 300,000 people. How are we going to survive with a lot of cases unresolved? The marital cases are on the increase and there are a lot of instabilities in marriages today. The civil cases have increased.

Madam Chairperson, the infrastructure is very much needed, the K600 million that was allocated for rehabilitation as my earlier debaters said should just have been given to hon. Members for their constituencies. Madam Chairperson, K50 million will erect a very good local court, but when you go to the Ministry of Works and Supply, they will give you about K300 million for a local court. You will find some big buildings being erected by the community using very little money. But when a project is brought to the attention of the hon. Minister of Works and Supply they will start talking of huge sums of money. In this context, I am suggesting to the hon. Minister of Justice that the Judiciary Department must be allocating money just like the Ministry of Local Government and Housing is doing.

Mr Kazonga: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikazwe: As we are talking Nsumbu Local Court will be blown off anytime because the entire building is in bad shape. There is no confidentiality of the documents because we do not have cupboards to keep the documents and instead the court clerks are keeping them at their homes.

To that effect, we are not accessing equal justice and instead it is being proved that justice is for just those in Lusaka. We have seen Chikwa and the other courts there, so we also need modern courts in rural areas as well. If we curb crime at local level, it will be easier for the magistrates to continue their work.

Madam Chairperson, we have been talking about the local court justices as Hon. Kambwili mentioned. What is it that is causing a problem today? I used to see some men attached to the chiefdoms who were giving fair judgment as opposed to these people today who are claiming to be learned but giving unfair judgment to people. What is the position of the Ministry of Justice and officials seated there …

The Chairperson: Order! You do not debate with those. You are debating in the House.


Mr Sikazwe: Much obliged Madam. I was trying to put the point across because they are here.

Madam Chairperson, it is a shame to the Judiciary Department to have such local court justices. If there is no course at the moment at National Institute for Public Administration (NIPA), it should be introduced so that the shame is eroded.

Madam Chairperson, even an ordinary man like me will see that there is injustice in a judgment. We used to have mature people passing judgment in these local courts who would tell you that even if you go to the Supreme Court, you will lose the case, and at the end of the day, the judgment they gave would even be considered by the magistrate court. However, today, there is a misunderstanding between the two courts. The offering of compensation has brought a very big controversy in local courts and in this regard, the Judiciary Department must revisit the compensation scenario.

The so-called marriage interference cases are very common in local courts today. Somebody said the President has said no to this. Let us know the way in which we can curb this problem.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikazwe: Madam Chairperson, much has been said about local courts. Let me go back to the issue of infrastructure. The Judiciary Department must be proactive. Madam Chairperson, a lot has been done in Lusaka, and it is now time for you officials in the ministry to start touring as hon. Members are doing. Our office Parliament is in Lusaka, but each time we adjourn we go back to our constituencies to see what is obtaining on the ground, and when we write letters to you, you do not respond.

Madam Chairperson: Order! The people you are addressing are not here. You address the Chair. Whether you see them or not, they are not part of this gathering.


Mr Sikazwe: Madam Chairperson, I am addressing the Chairperson so that the hon. Minister of Justice can get what I am talking about. I am saying that the officials in the Ministry of Justice, including the hon. Minister of Justice and the Permanent Secretary should at times have stray visits to the rural areas to see what it is we are talking about - the shame the Ministry gets in these areas. If the hon. Minister and his entourage at the Ministry of Justice are busy, even His Honour the Chief Justice at one time can make a move to see for himself because he is the boss of the Judiciary.

I thank you, Madam.

The Deputy Minister of Tourism and Natural Resources (Mr Chilembo): Madam Chairperson, I wish to congratulate the hon. Minister of Justice on working tirelessly to ensure that the Judiciary attains an autonomous status through the Judicature Act.

I must say that all those who come from the legal profession are, indeed, proud of this achievement as the hon. Minister has lived up to the true compliment of being a learned lawyer and Minister of Justice. This also, will create further confidence in those doubting Thomases who might not have believed the Government’s commitment to having an independent Judiciary.

Madam Chairperson, there is no doubt that our Judiciary in this country is very independent. Those who have cared to compare with other countries will no doubt agree with me that there have been instances where our courts have come out with decisions against the state, depending on the evidence before it. Having interacted with the Judiciary myself, I can confirm that our Judiciary has done very well and it is one of those most independent Judiciaries you can ever come across, not only here in Zambia, but compares very well even at international level.

Madam Chairperson, it is with this background that I support the budget and urge all the hon. Members in this House to support it. This Judiciary has done much more than these principles I am propounding. If you look at the call for stiff sentences on the matters relating to defilement and rape, you will agree with me that over the years, the punishments have been very stiff. There was a time when rape cases were attracting meager sentences as less as six months and for child defilement as less as three months. You can imagine a father defiling his own baby and gets six months. These days we are getting as much as thirty years sentences and I have no doubt that these sentences might even become stiffer as we go on. Some people have actually called for castration of rapists.


Mr Chilembo: This is a matter of greater debate because there is also an element of human rights. However, everything depends on society and our Judiciary which has been responsive to its society listens and as they sentence, they will take into account how society condemns these acts by some of our people in our midst.

Mr V. Mwale: Niba lawyer aba.

Mr Chilembo: Madam Chairperson, regarding our local courts, I would not want to say much because the able hon. Minister of Justice will be able to cover this at length. However, I just want to point out that the local courts have done a commendable job in the area of deceased’s estates. Most of our people do not write Wills. They have a phobia about writing Wills as they think that if they write a Will today, they might die tomorrow.

Madam Chairperson, what has happened is that most of those people who die intestate – that is people who die without writing Wills – have been taken care of by our local courts. When most of these cases go on appeal to the Magistrate Courts for litigation, whether matrimonial or for property rights, the cases are heard denovo. Denovo means afresh and so the worry of poor record keeping is addressed. I can assure the hon. Members that our judicial system is very well polished. You have the right to appeal from the local court up to the Supreme Court.

Hon. Member: Sure?

Mr Chilembo: Yes, you can appeal. It does not mean that if a matter is in a local court then you cannot go further. For those who feel that you are not getting good justice at local court level, please, feel free to exercise your liberties by appealing and exhausting our judicial system.

With those few words, I thank you, Madam Chairperson.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mooya (Moomba): Madam Chairperson, I will be very brief. To start with, let me say that I support the budget and acknowledge the effort by Government to rehabilitate the court infrastructure. However, there is a lot to do and it will take a long time to rehabilitate the entire court infrastructure.

Madam Chairperson, I would like to make a few observations. First of all, I note that some of the rehabilitations are very expensive because they are massive. For example, I note that rehabilitations range from K62 million to about K1.6 billion. To me, anything over K1 billion is expensive and calls for new construction.

I note here, for example, on page 259 Southern Province. In 2007, K62,680,000 was given for rehabilitation in Livingstone. Similarly, the same figure has been given this year 2008. To me, this looks all right, however, on page 270, K1 billion was given to the Western Province in 2007, and this year another K600,000,000 has been given for rehabilitation of court building. To me, this gives the impression that there is massive damage and rehabilitation will not do. It tells me, further, that instead of rehabilitating this building, it is supposed to be pulled down and a new one constructed.

Another issue I would like to discuss is the way rehabilitation works are being funded. They are being phased instead of being funded at one goal. For example, on page 264, of the Yellow Book, Judiciary – Subordinate Courts – Luapula Province- Programme 7, Activity 01 – Construction of Court Buildings – K287 million was allocated in 2007 and in 2008, K350 million has been allocated. To me, these are small amounts. Why not just allocate K600 million at one goal to rehabilitate the building? This is because when you do it in phases, it becomes very costly, but if you fund it at one goal, it becomes less expensive.

Mr Speaker, let me come to the other issue concerning the rehabilitation or construction works that are being done. Let us guard jealously any work that is being done in the country. We have developed a bad habit of not caring about public buildings. Let us change this attitude. Let us look after whatever we are working on now, whether it is court buildings or any other public infrastructure, let us guard it jealously and look after it very well.

Finally, let me talk about the attractive working conditions given to the Judiciary. I am jealous here because this is supposed to be given to every worker in the country. The era in which we are now has to do more with development. Law and order was a priority up to the late 1980s, but now we have to concentrate very much on development. By that, I am suggesting that we also extend this to other Government workers. I have in mind the scientists, engineers, architects and many others because if we ignore these people, we will not be able to achieve the Vision 2030. As we know, the Vision 2030 is about development. Now, if we concentrate on giving better conditions to the Judiciary alone ignoring other technical ministries or institutions, we will not achieve this Vision 2030.

Mr Ntundu : Hear, hear!

Mr Mooya: As said earlier, I have very few words to say, but let me thank you, Madam Chairperson.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr C. K. B. Banda, SC (Chasefu): Madam Chairperson, I rise to support wholeheartedly the budget for the Judiciary and the reasons are very simple. For a change, we can see that the Judiciary is paying attention to the rehabilitation of court infrastructure.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr C. K. B. Banda: I have had the occasion to look at the Yellow Book and, definitely, the funds are being spread out. This is the way things ought to be. I am mindful of the fact that the condition of the High Court Buildings are in a deplorable state, but with the allocation of funds, we hope the ceiling boards, that are threatening litigants as they appeal in courts, will be repaired so that we can sit and listen to proceeding without fear of objects falling on our heads.

Madam Chairperson, I will address the Lusaka High Court. The Lusaka High Court was not constructed a long time ago, but I am sad to say that the condition of the Lusaka High Court leaves much to be desired. I know you have attempted and allocated some funds, but the funds are very little. However, a start has been made. If you go to the Lusaka High Courts, all you have to do is to look at ceiling boards and you will see ants attacking the ceiling boards. We are wondering whether the litigants that appear before these courts are private citizens and not Government employees, but I am happy that a start has been made.

Madam Chairperson, I would also like to comment that construction of local courts has been spread although no local court will be constructed in my constituency, but, at least, I am happy to note that other constituencies are recipients of construction of local court buildings.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr C. K. B. Banda: I also note with satisfaction that the commercial court was created and started operating a long time ago. Unfortunately, some of the judges of the commercial court do not have chambers. I am happy to note that this time around Government has allocated funds for construction of Chambers for commercial court justices. Madam Chairperson, this is a step in the right direction.

However, there is a courtroom which was being used by the Task Force on Corruption. One wonders why this courtroom is not accessed by judges of the commercial court who are squatting in small chambers adjacent to this building. Is it putting Government property to good use only to reserve it for the use of a judge who comes from Britain once in two years? I would like to urge the Judicial Department to ensure that this courtroom is accessed by judges of the commercial court. There is no need to keep that structure which has been renovated closed without being applied to good use.

I also note that notwithstanding the fact that the Small Claims Courts Act was enacted by this Parliament around 1993 or 1994, this time around, the Judiciary has taken a bold step to ensure that this Small Claims Court starts operating. This is a step in the right direction. However, the Judiciary must look at the jurisdiction of commissioners who will be running the Small Claims Courts. The reason for this is very simple. This court will not have any impact if the jurisdiction will be restricted to handling cases of up to a maximum of K10 million. My appeal is that the Judiciary should look at the Subordinate Courts Act as well as the Small Claims Courts Act to ensure, firstly, that the jurisdiction of the magistrates is enhanced and with that enhancement you can in turn enhance the jurisdiction of commissioners who will be running the small-scale courts.

The other issue I would like to congratulate Government on relates to training. I have noted that some money has been set aside for training of clerks. I hope this money will also be extended to training court interpreters.

Mr L. J. Mulenga: Hear, hear!

Mr C. K. B. Banda: Dispensation of justice through court interpreters is one area where people are made to receive raw justice. The quality of interpretation in our courts, I must say, leaves much to be desired. It is about time the Judiciary took serious note to training these interpreters. Most of us understand local languages and it is for this reason that we are able to stand up and speak with authority that the quality of our interpreters leaves much to be desired. One wonders whether the Judiciary has not noticed these shortcomings. If they have not, it is about time they paid attention to training interpreters.

The same applies to training of court marshals. A judge will perform his job efficiently if he is serviced by a well-trained Marshal. I must add here now that some of the Marshals qualify for further training because they let down Judges in most of the cases. They cannot maintain Judges diaries to an extent that some times you appear before the Judge and the Judge will tell you that the case is not in the diary. This is all because of Marshals who are not well-trained. I hope you will ensure that Marshals are trained.

Madam Chairperson, the other area of concern relates to officers who man the registries. The commercial registry, I must add is well manned by officers who really know what they are doing but the same cannot be said of the Principal Registry especially, the Lusaka Principal Registry. It is very common to be informed that the case records are missing. This is a very common occurrence. Why should this be so? The Principal Registry is computerised, therefore, tracing the movement of files should be an easier exercise.

Madam, the question some of us are asking is why it is common practice to lose files more especially, in certain instances and I will cite one instance. When you are representing a defendant who has been served with writs of summons and a statement of claim, you as a lawyer will prepare a defence and memorandum of appearance. Most of the times, when you call at the Principal Registry, especially in Lusaka to file the defence,  you will always be told that the file cannot be traced and that you should go back the following day. This may occur on a number of occasions.

Madam Chairperson, if you are determined as many are, you go there the forth time, only to be told that judgment in default has been entered.  When you ask when that was done, you are told the previous day. I think this is not good for the Judiciary. All of us value the Judiciary and we want this mirror to remain clean without cracks.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr C. K. B. Banda: The performance of the young men and women in the Principal Registry, in my view leaves much to be desired and I am urging the Judiciary to ensure that they organise training courses for these young men and women. What we want is to ensure that we enhance the performance of the Judiciary which we value so much. Remaining silent without commenting on some of these short comings means that we are shorting ourselves in the foot.

Madam Chairperson, in Lusaka, we were all very happy when new Subordinate Court Building was constructed. That was under the courtesy of the donors. What is happening now is that if you go to the Subordinate Courts at 0900 hours or 1000 hours especially, in Lusaka where you have twelve court rooms, in most cases, only six magistrates are sitting and the rest of the court rooms are empty. Now, we begin to wonder if our brothers and sisters really need new court rooms. This is a very serious problem. I am raising these issues because we have a responsibility to ensure that we perform. My appeal to the Judiciary is that if there is no supervision at the Magistrate Court Level in Lusaka, please put proper supervision in place, otherwise, people are working very well.

With these few words, I rest my submission.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo): Madam Chairperson, I pity the hon. Minister of Justice that he must take the blunt of all the things in the Judiciary. He has been saying that there is autonomy of the Judiciary.

Madam, I would want to see the Chief Administrator representing the Judiciary and not the hon. Minister of Justice. That way, things will be stable.  We do not want a situation where sometimes the Permanent Secretary in the Judiciary is not sure of certain things as regards to money. That autonomy must be complete.

Madam, I am glad that in the budget, there has been a 30 per cent increase. Last year, there was K92,640,084,259 and this year, there is K128,419,920,971. There is an increase of almost K30 billion which is about 30 per cent. The only problem is that this percentage increase is only for salaries and that is not enough because these are the people who have been crying for increments and so 30 percent increment on their salaries …

The Chairperson: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours.

[THE CHAIRPERSON in the Chair]

The Chairperson: Order! Before we proceed, let me guide the House that we are doing very serious business in the House and hon. Members are expected to consider the Votes very seriously. Therefore, coming in late after break is unacceptable. It is incumbent upon each one of you to whip yourselves and come back to the House. When you stand to debate, some of you take the whole of fifteen minutes repeating same points and the Chair has to listen to everything but when it is your turn to keep time, you actually are not paying attention. This is unfortunate and I hope this is happening for the last time and we will all come back on time.

Mr Muntanga: Madam Chairperson, when business was suspended, I was saying that the budget for the Judiciary has increased by 30 per cent, meaning that this year, it has been allocated over K128 billion, which is better than the K80 billion allocated last year. I notice that this money is for salaries. I understand that an increment of 30 per cent may be considered too high considering that inflation is at 10 per cent, but things are expensive in this country, and I contend that the 30 per cent increment is still small.

Madam Chairperson, total autonomy of the Judiciary is important. It is also important that the budget for the Judiciary be made and given even before coming to Parliament. I know that it is a legal requirement that Parliament approves the budget, but having said that, we are not giving everything that is there. I have noticed that this year, the Judiciary has been allocated K11 billion for outstanding bills. I am not sure what these bills could be, but they may be for repairs.

Madam Chairperson, last year, most of the local courts in the provinces were allocated K1billion for rehabilitation. However, this year, Southern and Luapula Provinces have only been allocated K600 million. There is a big reduction in the amount of money required for rehabilitation of local courts compared to last year, and yet the situation in local courts is terrible. If one cares to go through local courts, he would find a serious problem. I would like to urge this House to increase the allocations every other time so that rehabilitation of local courts continues.

In Lusaka, the Judiciary wanted more office space and they were given the Chikwa Courts and the new complex near the Central Prison. However the Chikwa court rooms are not being utilised at all. Other than the one which was renovated for the former President, which is only active when he appears, most of the time, those court rooms are not used at all.

If a person with a case goes to court at 0900 hours, the workers at Chikwa Local Courts will not show up until 1000 hours or 1100 hours, and it is only to issue a new date. Why do they come late? Before, it was because of lack of accommodation, but what is their problem now? If one complains, then he or she is committing contempt of court.

Madam Chairperson, I am appealing to the Chief Justice and the hon. Minister of Justice to one day, without warning, visit the magistrates courts and have a look around. You will not find any one there. Cases that would otherwise not take long to dispose off take years because it is adjournment after adjournment. Some people have case after case and they keep appearing in court. When will anything be concluded? That is why they say Justice delayed is Justice denied. While we accept that there are problems, let us see a change in Lusaka for Heaven’s sake Madam Chairlady …


Hon. Member: Madam Chairlady?

Mr Muntanga: I am sorry, Madam Chairperson.


Mr Muntanga: Let us have a change so that the following day or week, we may have court sessions starting at 0900 hours.

Madam Chairperson, I am appealing again to the hon. Minister of Justice and the Chief Justice to visit these local courts.

Madam, the idea of not accommodating local court Justices is resulting in local courts opening their doors to the public at any time, even in the afternoon. This simply adds confusion to the situation. The local Court Justices will come cycling from his village at any time. People would be waiting while the one who is supposed to preside over their cases is still cycling from some village. If you can accommodate these local court Justices, courts would sit on time and proper justice applied.
Madam Chairperson, there is one thing we should scrutinise in the autonomy of the Judiciary. There is confusion in the local courts where the chiefs, who are controlled by the local government, have some control in the recommendation of local court Justices. Local courts out there depend on cultural laws within their tribes and areas, therefore a man who has degrees, like the hon. Member who contributed to the debate earlier mentioned, may not have a chance. In our tradition there is no education. The person that counts is the one who knows the tradition best. You do not need degrees – except for the hon. Deputy Minister for Western Province, who is the State Counsel for …

Mr Kambwili: Traditional laws.

Mr Muntanga: …traditional laws.


Hon. Opposition Member: Mufalali.

Mr Muntanga: Otherwise, these people depend on laws from a long time ago and they will tell you how things are done.

Madam Chairperson, even as we debate, a number of hon. Members here do not want to marry in the High Court because they will be told that they cannot have another wife. However, in the local courts it is allowed to have more than one wife…


Mr Muntanga: Therefore, the way local courts look at cases is different.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: Let us up date the laws in the local courts.

No wonder you hear that when a husband beats his wife it is a sign of love. Such judgment is common in local courts. This is because in local courts if a man says he beat up a woman because he loves her, the local courts accept that. To them, it is normal because that is the traditional belief.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: It is worrying because this traditional way of thinking is coming to top leadership. It is not right to beat up a woman because you love her.

Mr Mufalali interjected.

Mr Muntanga: You are the State Counsel.

I am appealing to the hon. Minister of Justice to look at this issue because we are tired of this tree business. They are not mere trees, they are mango trees. In our area, in the rainy season, they are always looking for  mango trees to sit under probably because they want to be eating mangoes as they conduct court sessions.


Mr Muntanga: Let us go and repair these local courts. Hon. Minister of Justice, I am offering my vehicle to anyone in the Judiciary so that we go through Chief Chona, Chief Ufwemuka, Chief Sipatunyana and Chief Siachitema and you will see what is in these areas. It is like there is a conspiracy to destroy the courts. At independence, these buildings were headquarters for the chiefs and houses for the chiefs were built.

Now chiefs are no longer chairing cases, and instead, we have replaced them with the Judiciary.  However, when we want to select a local court Justice we have to go to the chief. In our tradition there is no education, it is just who knows the tradition better. Those are customs. It has been our wish that the Judiciary is autonomous and hasten all cases. We do not want to comment on court cases right now, but we are getting a bit irked and we are beginning to think that there is an arrangement where the Sitting Bench can agree when to sit for the cases, and they agree to sit the following year in January so that the case is adjourned for one year to a convenient date.

I am, therefore, certain that if we had changed Government, some of these cases would have lapsed. Next time, the MMD Government will not be there because their twenty years in power is more than enough, they have to go. If some cases are not concluded,…

 Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: I know you want to be President, but you will not because we are taking over.


Mr Muntanga: You should, therefore, make sure that you conclude all the pending cases so that they do not lapse at all.

Madam Chairperson, my point is to urge the Judiciary to hasten all cases. I welcome the budgetary allocation for the Judiciary although not much has been allocated for repair of buildings. Madam Chairperson, for Lusaka, K1 billion has been allocated to rehabilitate Chawama/Chilanga/Chilenje and others although the wall for Chilenje Local Court has been well-done by Barclays Bank. I urge the hon. Minister to next time consider the rural areas so that we can feel that we are part of the system of governance.

 I thank you, Madam Chairperson.{mospagebreak}

Mr Kunda: Madam Chairperson, I have spent a lot of time talking about the problem of local courts.

 The problem of the dilapidation of local courts and in some cases, non-existence of local courts is a massive problem which we are facing in this country. Madam Chairperson, I will give you some statistics which will show that we have so many courts which require rehabilitation and even construction. Countrywide, we have 465 existing courts. Those courts which require rehabilitation are 146 and we also need to build 186 additional local courts.

Madam Chairperson, we cannot do this exercise in one financial year. That is why in my preamble or in my earlier statement, I stated that we are addressing this problem progressively. I also gave a list of local courts which we have already repaired or rehabilitated this year and where we have constructed new courts. We have 150 constituencies in this august House and perhaps in each constituency, you may find three or four courts and, therefore, we can only address this problem progressively.

Madam Chairperson, it is clear that the hon. Member for Mfuwe (Mr Malama) has not read the budget and if he has read the budget, then, he has not understood it.


Mr Kunda: Madam Chairperson, Hon. Chifumu K. B. Banda, who has read the budget thoroughly has come out clearly that the issue of renovating local courts is wide spread. The fact that there is no court for Mfuwe even himself acknowledges that there is no court in his constituency which is being addressed, but he was constructive and objective in looking at the budget. I think this is what we should be doing as hon. Members.

Madam Chairperson, if you came to my office without an appointment and you bring a letter, that letter is under consideration. We are looking at the courts in relation to the other requests from other hon. Members and the resource envelope.

Madam Chairperson, I also want to make some clarifications on some misleading statements from Hon. Kambwili on local courts. He said that some local court justices do not write the evidence which is being presented and that on appeal, you can lose a case. Hon. Kambwili, I want to give you a free lecture. When you appear in a local court - I do know which case you were referring to, but when you are appear in a local court and evidence is abused and a record is made, if you are dissatisfied with a judgment of the local court, you are free to appeal to the magistrate court where lawyers will tell you that such an appeal is heard de novo – meaning that there is re-hearing of the case. The magistrate court will hear the evidence and make a proper record. Therefore, a local court is not a court of record.

Madam Chairperson, local courts are doing a commendable job.

Mr Kambwili: Question!

Mr Kunda: There are closer to the people and that is why each and every Budget Session, there is a lot said about local courts and as a Government we have taken note of the various concerns raised on the need to provide local courts. That is why every year, we have to continue providing funds for local courts to be constructed.

Hon. Mooya was talking about the budget line on Page 270. He was saying that rehabilitating one court with K1 billion last year and K600 million this year means that it is a very expensive court. I wish to assure him that under this item, it is not only one court that we are going…

Mr Malama: On a point of order, Madam.

The Chairperson: Order! Why do we raise a point of order when the hon. Minister is giving his response to your own concerns? Hon. Members, that is not procedural.

May the hon. Minister of Justice, please, continue.

Mr Kunda: Madam Chairperson, I was saying that a number of courts will be rehabilitated under that item. Last year, we did some work from the K9 billion which we provided and K1 billion was spread per province.

Madam Chairperson, the concerns raised on conditions of service for the Judiciary have been noted. Madam, I also want to say that I have been following debates in this august House even before I became a Member of Parliament. What I know is that hon. Members were urging Government to improve conditions of service for Judges. They were prodding us to improve those conditions of service because lawyers from the private sector were not going to the bench and messages of this nature kept coming to Government and over the years, conditions of service have been improved because Government has responded to the concerns of the hon. Member of Parliament and members of the public.

Now, we have good conditions of service in place, but what I must acknowledge from your submissions is the fact that we should also look at conditions of service for other categories of the judicial personnel who maybe disadvantaged. That particular point is noted.

With these few words, I thank you, Madam Chairperson.

Vote 18/01 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/02 ordered to stand part of the Estimates

Vote 18/03 ordered to stand part of the Estimates

Vote 18/04 ordered to stand part of the Estimates

VOTE 18/05 – (Judiciary – Local Courts – K4,591,225,399)

Ms Imbwae (Lukulu West): Madam Chairperson, may I have clarification on Programme 7, Activity 01 – Court Circuiting – K80,467,500, why is there a reduction on that line?

Mr Kunda: Madam Chairperson, on Programme 7, Activity 01 – Court Circuiting – K80,467,500, this provision will be required to meet the costs of subsistence and meal allowances and other services to facilitate court circuiting to places where there are no resident justices. From this particular activity and looking at the work which will be involved, we feel that this can be done within this particular provision which we have provided.

I thank you, Madam.

Vote 18/05 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/06 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/07 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 18/08 – (Judiciary – Industrial Relations Court – K3,835,153,417)

Ms Imbwae: Madam Chairperson, may I have clarification on Programme 2, Activity 02 – Rentals for MAJAZ Members – Nil, why is there no budget line? Do you mean that everybody has been accommodated?

Mr Kunda: Madam Chairperson, on Programme 2, Activity 02 – Rentals for MAJAZ Members – Nil, one of the reasons is that we bought a block of flats for magistrates and so this activity is not required this year.

I thank you, Madam.

Vote 18/08 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/10 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/11 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/12 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/13 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/14 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 18/15 – (Judiciary –Local Court –Central Province – K2,761,757,501)

Ms Imbwae: Madam Chairperson, may I have clarification on Programme 7, Activity 01 – Inspections – K52,596,438. Are we going to have less inspections this year or is there another explanation for the reduction in the allocation this year?

Mr Kunda: Madam Chairperson, on Programme 7, Activity 01 – K52,596,438, this reduction is negligible and the activities will be conducted under this provision.

I thank you, Madam.

Vote 18/15 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 18/16 – (Judiciary – High Court – Northern Province – K374,928,798)

Ms Imbwae: Madam Chairperson, on Programme 1, Activity – 05 – Other Emoluments – K12,000,000, may I know why there is such a big reduction on this activity.

Mr Kunda: Madam Chairperson, on Programme 1, Activity – 05 – Other Emoluments – K12,000,000, the amount is for leave days and over time. This was taken care of last year, hence, the reduction.

I thank you, Madam Chairperson.

Vote 18/16 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/17 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/18 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 18/19 – (Judiciary – High Court – Southern Province – K1,108,481,349)

Ms Imbwae: Madam Chairperson, on Programme 1, Activity 05 – Other Emoluments – Nil. Does it mean that there are no personal emoluments that are marked as other or everybody has been paid?  On Programme 2, Activity – 03 – Rentals for MAJAZ Members – Nil, did you again buy a block or there is another explanation on the no amount on it.

Mr Kunda: Madam Chairperson, on Programme 1, Activity 05 – Other Emoluments – Nil, there is no magistrate to be catered for. On Programme 2, Activity – 03 – Rentals for MAJAZ Members – Nil, payment will be done from headquarters.

I thank you, Madam Chairperson.

Vote 18/19 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/20 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/21 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 18/22 – (Judiciary – High Court – Eastern Province - K343,319,196)

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Ms Imbwae: Madam Chairperson, they are threatening me, but on Programme 8, Activity 2 – Distribution of ARVs – Nil, is there no treatment this year for Eastern Province?

The Chairperson: Order! Read the item above.

Vote 18/22 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/23 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/24 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/25 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/26 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/27 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/28 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 18/29 ─ (Judiciary ─ High Court ─ Western Province ─ K88,066,214).

Ms Imbwae (Lukulu West): Madam Chairperson, may I have clarification on Programme 7, Activity 01 ─ Revenue Collection Inspections – Nil. Does this mean that there is not going to be money for revenue collection in Western Province this year?

Mr Kunda: Madam Chairperson, Programme 7, Activity 01 ─ Revenue Collection Inspections – Nil, there is no High Court in the province.

I thank you, Madam.


The Chairperson: Order!

Vote 18/29 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/30 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 18/31 ─ (Judiciary ─ Local Court ─ Western Province─ K7,772,062,059).

Mrs Musokotwane (Katombola): Madam Chairperson, on Programme 7, Activity 02 ─ Court Administration ─ Nil. Last year it was allocated more than K100 million but this year there is nothing. How is the court going to be administered?

Mr Kunda: Which one is that?

Mrs Musokotwane: Programme 7, Activity 02 ─ Court Administration ─ Nil.

The Chairperson: Order! It is on page 270, Programme 7, Activity 02 ─ Court Administration.

Mr Kunda: Madam Chairperson, there is a provision on Programme 2, Activity 01 ─ Office Administration ─ K122, 212,784. The hon. Member should go through the whole page, and she will see it.

Vote 18/31 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/32 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 18/33 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

VOTE 34 ─ (Human Rights Commission─ K8,226,768,556).

The Minister of Defence (Mr Mpombo): Madam Chairperson, I rise to present the policy statement and justification for the estimates of expenditure for the Human Rights Commission for 2008.

The Human Rights Commission is established under Article 125 of the Constitution of Zambia and the powers and functions of the commission are contained in the Human Rights Commission Act No. 39 of 1996. Its main functions are investigation of human rights violations, investigation of mal-administration of justice and to conduct visits to prisons and prison cells. It is also mandated to conduct research in human rights, to carry out human rights education programmes and to facilitate the rehabilitation of victims of human rights abuse.

Madam Chairperson, in 2007 the commission was allocated K7,897,296,671 to implement the above mentioned functions. The funds released allowed the commission to undertake the under listed activities.

Madam Chairperson, the commission received 746 complaints from members of the public in 2007. A total of 147 cases were brought forward from 2006 bringing the total number of complaints attended to in 2007 to 893.

The commission received 283 complaints from headquarters, 208 from the Ndola office, sixty from the Mongu office, thirty-eight from the Kasama office, fifty-two from the Chipata office and 105 from the Livingstone office. From the cases considered in 2007, the commission resolved 532 cases whilst 361 are still under investigations.

The effective investigation of complaints of human rights violations were in the first three quarters of 2007 hampered by the shortage of manpower both at the headquarters and in the provincial centres. The recruitment of two investigation officers at head office and three investigation officers in the provincial centres saw a major improvement in the investigation and handling of complaints of human rights violations.

The purchase of a utility vehicle for the investigation and legal department in the third quarter of 2007 has enabled the department to carry out the much required field investigations for most of the complaints as opposed to desk investigations.

Madam Chairperson, Section 9, of the Human Rights Commission Act mandates the Commission to visit prisons and places of detention or related facilities with a view to assessing and inspecting conditions of persons held in such places and make recommendations to redress the existing problems. In pursuance of Section 9, the Commission undertook an inspection tour of prison cells and other places of detention on the Copperbelt Province.

 In line with this mandate, the Commission visited Mwembeshi Open Air Prison to assess and determine how the pronounced programme of decongestion of prisons was being conducted.

Madam Chair, in the fourth quarter of 2007, the Commission conducted its first public hearing in Mkushi to hear and consider allegations of various human rights violation. Whilst in Mkushi, the Commission also visited Filwila Orphanage to investigate complaints of abuse and maltreatment of the children at the orphanage. The complaints were found to be true and a report was prepared.

Madam, in order to continue the process of making people aware of their rights and thus enhance the protection of human rights, the Commission undertook sensitisation and education programmes and campaigns in the year 2007. The activities included radio programmes that highlighted selected human rights issues as well as the periodic issuance of press statements on topical human rights issues to both state the position of the Commission and guide the public on such issues. The Commission was also invited by other stakeholders to participate at various workshops, meetings and similar gatherings covering wide ranging human rights subjects.

The Commission with the assistance from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) commenced the process of piloting the use of community radio in its human rights awareness campaigns.

Arrangements were also finalised to participate more actively in strengthening the teaching of civic education in high schools, by interacting more closely with relevant bodies like Teachers Training Colleges, the Curriculum Development Centre and the Ministry of Education at large. This should culminate in the organisation of workshops for teachers, teacher trainers and curriculum developers as well as a development of literature to support the teaching of the new subjects.

Madam during the year 2007, the Human Rights Commission undertook the following research activities:

(i) the compilation and production of annual state of human rights reports. The report conducts a review and analysis of human rights protection and promotion activities undertaken by Government during 2007. It is important to note that the report examines the provisions and application of the Fifth National Development Plan (FNDP) in respect of human rights promotion and protection. The annual set of human rights report is expected to be launched by April, 2008;

(ii) the Commission participated in a research on trafficking and forced labour spearheaded by the International Labour Organisation (ILO). This research activity is still on going and is yet to be concluded; and

(iii) The Commission spearheaded the setting up of an office for the Commission for children’s rights within the Human Rights Commission. It is intended to enhance institutional capacity for improved promotion and protection of the rights of the child. The activities undertaken included:

(a)  research in into the promotion and protection of children’s rights in Zambia. The objective was to determine the activities, successes and challenges of the organisations visited and as a result determine among other things, the best interventions on the part of the Commission in respect to children’s rights;

(b) training and sensitisation workshops for Commission staff and members of the Commission’s Children’s Rights Committee to enhance their knowledge and capacity to deal with children’s right issues; and

(c) a sensitisation meeting for three hon. Members of Parliament on issues of children’s rights and the budget process  also emphasised the role Members of Parliament can play to enhance the protection of the rights of children.

Madam Chairperson, during 2007, the Commission carried out various activities to commemorate days that remind us of the importance of respect for and observance of human rights. These included the day of the African Child on the Theme ‘Combating Child Trafficking’. The Commission centred its five day activities on public awareness of this terrible practice in the border town of Livingstone.

The International Women’s Day and the International Human Rights Day were also commemorated. The theme for the International Human Rights Day which falls annually on December the 10th was a start of a year-long commemoration of the 60th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Madam Chairperson, the implementation of the Commission’s mandate demands collaboration with other stakeholders both locally and internationally. At the internal level, the Commission participated in various conferences and workshops on Human Rights. The main sponsors of these invents were the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, the Commonwealth Forum of National Human Rights Institution, Save the Children Norway, Save the Children Sweden and the United Nations Development Programme. I wish through you, to extend our profound appreciation to our cooperating partners for implementing our efforts to improve the capacity of the Commission in order for it to discharge this mandate effectively and efficiently.

Madam Chairperson, although the Commission staffing levels improved in 2007 to operate at 36 per cent from 30 per cent in 2006, it still experiencing a number of constraints in the implementation of programmes. The Commission continued to be under staffed and operated below recommended staff levels. Furthermore, the slight improvement in staffing levels in 2007 created a problem for the Commission as it had limited office accommodation.

Madam Chair, it should be noted that the capacity of the Commission to carry out its mandate is still limited. In 2007 the Commission marked ten years of its operations, yet all that time, the Research and Planning Department and the Information, Education Training Departments had one member of staff each. This situation exists despite the granting of treasury authority to the Commission in 2002 to recruit the full establishment. Today, the Commission has only forty-seven members of staff as opposed to the approved 130.

The Commission faces a critical challenge of lack of office accommodation as it endeavours to fill in more vacancies in 2008. Due to the limited financial resources available to the nation, the budgetary allocation was not sufficient to adequately support all of the Commission’s planned programmes.

Madam Chairperson, it is critical to point out that the Human Rights Commission is a ‘Status A’ national human rights institution under the framework of the International Coordinating Committee. The grading of a national human rights institution as a ‘Status A’ body is based on satisfying the international standards as stipulated in the United Nations Principles relating to national institution for promotion and protection of human rights. Classification of ‘Status A’ is not only good for the Commission, but for Zambia. This status is due for review in 2011.

Madam Chairperson, the Commission performs important functions in the promotion and protection of Human Rights and implementation of good governance in our country. The Commission plans to conduct various programmes for 2008. It is, therefore, important that hon. Members should support the estimates which are before the House in order to enable the Commission continue and expand its activities.

Madam Chairperson, I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka (Bahati): Madam Chairperson, I stand to support the estimate appropriated to the Permanent Human Rights Commission.

Madam Chairperson, everything revolves and hinges around human beings. The proposal for which a Government exists is to render service to human beings. Parliament is about servicing human beings, therefore, human rights are very important in justice dispensation even in provision of governance.

As I support this appropriation, I have some observations I want to make. Having had time to interact with prisons when I was Provincial Chairperson of the Permanent Human Rights Committee in Luapula Province for years, I noted that even though the institution was established, it fell short of trying to arrest the situation as regards provision and enhancement of human rights in prisons in particular.

Madam Chairperson, the Government must realise that prisons as they exist today, were meant to house inmates who were in very negligible numbers than they are today. Most of the prisons and most of the inmates today lack many things, for example, uniforms. You would wonder that most of the times our inmates do not have uniforms and they dress like slaves who served during the 15th Century than Zambians. Some of these people who are not convicts suffer the same fate and consequences as well as dehumanising standards just like those that are convicts.

Madam Chairperson, Government through the Human Rights Commission should address these issues very critically. Sometimes, women and innocent children are made to stay as remandees or as inmates in prisons where there are no conditions for women with children.

Madam Chairperson, the issue of blankets is another. Even though prisoners are convicts, they are human beings. They should be subjected to humane conditions by being provided for in terms of covers; food; medication; and they should be respected. They should not be tortured or harassed at all because they are made in the image of God.


Mr Chimbaka: Madam Chairperson, another issue that is worth considering is the time it takes to dispose of cases. If the rule of law is to prevail in our country, the issue of addressing human rights as concerns the number of days it takes for people to be convicted or to be freed must be considered. What happens when a person is in remand is that he is psychologically and mentally imprisoned and as a result, they become counter productive. Sometimes, they are influenced to the extent that they depreciate and end up very arrogant persons out there.

What happens in prisons would make one become a hard core criminal if one stayed there for a long time even when they live out of problems. Therefore, justice must be dispensed within time. Justice is about justiciability and, therefore, expedition must be made to ensure that the number of days it takes a person to be in prison or in remand is reduced extensively to allow persons enjoy their human rights.

Madam Chairperson, another aspect I would like to address is the issue of sensitisation. I had gone round the Lusaka Province conducting these sensitisation meetings and I found that the majority of our people in Zambia do not understand what is contained in the Bill of Rights even in the current Constitution. The reason why our people are sometimes made and influenced to make decisions which are disastrous judiciously is because of lack of understanding of their rights as enshrined in the Constitution.

Madam Chairperson, an appropriation that has been made, unfortunately, does not provide for electro and media sensitisation. It is very key for persons living here in the midlands and the Copperbelt that they get this education which is made for them to appreciate being citizens of Zambia.

Madam Chairperson, it is unfortunate that our growing children in schools have not been appropriated for. I believe education is key, not only to success, but also to appreciating human rights. If boys and girls are taught proper human rights, they understand the contents of the Bill of Rights and appreciate governance as per constitution as they grow up, it will be easy for posterity to live to the expectation because they will have grown up with that. Therefore, I would plead with my brother that we address the up coming generations because these are the leaders and the Ministers of Justice of tomorrow.

Madam Chairperson, I would like to address another issue of the Human Rights Commission being an organ which only investigates and sometimes recommends, but has no judicious powers. I am not suggesting that the Human Rights Commission should become another High Court. However, in other countries there are human rights courts which are meant basically to address human rights issues. How I wish, that Zambia, a country that has a very good human rights record in the world, had thought about establishing such a court. It would be very good in that it would reduce on the number of cases that may have to wait to be addressed either as civil or criminal cases. If there was a human rights court, some of these cases could be addressed.

Madam Chairperson, I would like to say that one thing that is of much concern in Zambia in particular, is that some learned and educated people do not respect human rights at all. There are so many examples I can give. I have read and have heard often times people writing in papers or sometimes speaking on radios about people who have not been convicted by any court of law being called thieves and plunderers. In the developed world it is a case because it is prejudicial. I am a layman.

Madam Chairperson, most times people’s rights have been trampled upon inadvertently and deliberately. How I wish the Human Rights Commission could go further in educating all these people who take pride in trying to be prejudicial about people’s cases to respect people’s rights. If the Human Rights Commission had judicious powers, such people can be advised to desist from that because it is only the courts of law that have the powers and jurisdiction to convict me and say ‘Chimbaka you are a thief’ upon being found so.

Madam Chairperson, I would like to say this to the learned hon. Minister of Justice Hon. Kunda. Hon. Kunda I have respect for you. As a young person, I followed you through my Mulamu Simwanza Pende and Company in Kitwe when you were the Chairperson for the Law Association of Zambia. One incident for which I have great respect for you and which I will never forget is that on the Floor of this House you stood to fight for what was right by saying what was judiciously correct when the world gathered here because of vexed interests in the former Republican President and when people demonstrated, you demonstrated your understanding of laws by saying that what was being done on the Floor of the House was incorrect because the Constitution provided to the contrary.

On that, Hon. Kunda, as a human right activist, I said, “there is a man who cannot succumb to pressure.” I think you can preside over this issue to ensure that human rights are preserved just like on that day, you stood out alone. I emphasise this point, you stood out alone!


Mr Chimbaka: That is the same Hon. Kunda. I am sure that posterity shall read the beauty of what we say, how we say it and what we do to one another, especially, that it is recorded. Posterity shall determine. One can pass on, but records shall live to tell the truth.

With regard to human rights, I can say a lot of things, but when we go out there, as hon. Members let us appreciate the aspect of human rights. The beauty of doing so is because human rights are religious. If we do so, there would be no finger pointing and insulting amongst ourselves. We could live like in heaven. There is no way we are going to behave to the contrary.

Hon. Members: Amen!

Mr Chimbaka: Madam Chairperson, the aspect of human rights, I do not want to go into debating the NCC, but I would like to say that the first world human rights and second world human rights, much as some people may claim that we want to be fair to ourselves, the human rights that we think we can amplify on, it is prudent that the Permanent Human Rights Commission is given the mandate to do that. When time comes and resources permitting, yes, we can address other human rights. The first republican President, Dr Kaunda, used to say that everything was at the centre of man. Man east, man north, man west and if we behave like that, especially, if my young brother, who won the case and we celebrated together, could allow me to debate freely, is part of human rights.

Madam Chairperson, I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Dr Kalumba (Chienge): Madam Chairperson I thank you for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the debate on this Vote and I will be very brief.

As I thank Government for this particular budget, I wish to highlight the plight of a very small group of people who reside in my constituency called the Batembo people. I am concerned about the rights of this itinerant population who move from place to place and know no border. The Batembo number, perhaps, not more than 2000 people. Perhaps, they are not just restricted to my area because I have heard from some of my colleagues talk about the Batwa, although I do not know where exactly they are placed, but I am sure they must be somewhere.

These are populations that are being threatened because of lack of access to basic social services. The Batembo in my constituency often live in the mountains and they are hunters and gatherers. They spend most of the time hunting for their protein, meat. They move in small bands with their children. The young boys and girls do not have access to education because their parents have to move. Our current structure of the education policy is static. We do not think of mobile populations that require a policy that will follow the student that has to be educated. We do not have mobile services for health adequate enough to reach out to this population such as the Batembo.

They may be a small group, but I believe in the equation of things that when we care for the least able in society, we have done more for ourselves. This small group perhaps typifies what we have or have not achieved. If by failure of will, political or otherwise, we fail to look after a Mutebo child, educate a Mutembo child or a Mutembo mother in her delivery, or fail to provide healthcare or maternal services for her, then we have fundamentally failed in a larger picture.

Madam Chairperson, I believe that our public policy must be creative enough to respond to minority needs such as these. In Chienge as perhaps, in other places, there may be these small populations that are not spoken about, not reported about because the media does not even know them. That is where public policy must come out to investigate and find out the unique conditions under which these people exist and tailor public services in response to those unique conditions.

I thank you, Madam Chairperson.

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka): Madam Chairperson, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to add my voice to the Vote on the Floor of the House.

Madam Chairperson, I will also take five minutes to contribute to this debate on this Vote. I will start by declaring interest and I feel it is the right think to do because my spouse works in the commission and, for the first time, she is seeing me debate as against hearing me debate.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo: I would like to begin by simply saying that the fight against human rights abuse must not be dealt with kids’ gloves. It is a very wide spectrum that requires bear knuckles to deal with. It should be extended, further, than just visiting prison cells or remand prisons seeing how inmates live. I think it should have its jurisdiction extended even to people who are on Cairo Road, seemingly free and yet their human rights are daily being trampled upon.

Madam Chairperson, having said so, I would like to say that I support the Vote wholeheartedly considering that sometimes …

Mr Nsanda: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Nkombo: … is the reason …

The Chairperson: Order, a point of order is raised.

Mr Nsanda: Madam Chairperson, I would like to find out if this Government through the Ministry of Communication and Transport is in order to sit idle when the Road Transport and Safety Agency is making a parallel budget by increasing all road user fees by more than a 1000 per cent. Madam, they know that very soon, there will be haulage of maize and the price of mealie meal has already gone up, and that by the time we start hauling the maize, with these fees, the truckers will also increase their hauling fees. The bus owners are also busy adjusting their fares.

Mr Mubika: Including you!

Mr Kanyanyamina: Mubika Mubika keep quiet you are a failure!

Mr Nsanda: Yes, I also own buses …

Mr L. J. Mulenga: Listen iwe na iwe!

Mr Nsanda: Is this Government in order to allow the RTSA to increase the fees by such an enormous amount for road users and that includes him because he owns a vehicle. I will lay the document on the table.

Mr Nsanda laid the paper on the Table.

The Chairperson: Order! The point of order raised should not be brought in, in the manner that it has come especially that the hon. Member and the House still have an opportunity to debate that because the Chair does not even know whether it is parallel.

The hon. Minister of Communications and Transport will tell us whether it is parallel or it is, indeed, part of the revenue that we are appropriating. The point the Chair is making is that we have not yet dealt with that ministry and therefore, at an appropriate time, as we deal with that ministry, these issues can be raised for the hon. Minister to give us clarification.

Will the hon. Member for Mazabuka continue, please.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo: Madam Chairperson, before the point of order, I was trying to emphasise the fact that commission’s mandate ought to be given a much wider spectrum from which to operate because there are people who are seemingly free within our society but whose human rights are being abused every single day.

Madam Chairperson, I have in mind the arrival of colonialists back in 1914 in this country as gratification to the war that they fought. In 1914 as well as 1945, they came to Southern Province and one Queen at that time awarded them with tracts and tracts of land that has seen our people being displaced.

Madam, I am talking about the internally displaced persons in this continent of Africa. I will try to zero them down to my constituency in Mazabuka, where it is evident that not only did this displacement begin at a time when the colonialists came, it has continued even in post independence era, when the Zambia Sugar Company was established.

In 1966, Dr Kenneth Kaunda came and sat villagers who are my relatives under a tree and told them that that was the land that was found most suitable for sugar cane growing. The benefits of that was that that investment was going to see people get to universities, it would build modern hospitals and it would get a lot of social amenities but unfortunately, we have not seen any of these. The people who were displaced from the Zambia Sugar Plantation are the people who today, this Government is busy trying to rescue in the flood plains of Itebe,...

Mr Hamududu: Kwamba!

Mr Nkombo: …Mbalanganda and Shakapinka.

Hon. UNDP Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo: These are the people who were moved by the Zambia Sugar Investment in 1966. To this day, I insist that their human rights are being trumped upon.

Mr Hamududu: Baambile!

Mr Nkombo: Madam Chairperson, as though that is not enough, just last year, we were at Mukoto and we debated this issue over and over and I sounded a warning that 2,500 human beings cannot be shifted like that without consulting and asking them where they really want to go. It was in the quest of them being in the way of investment.

Madam, Hon. Magande together with his colleague Hon. Konga went to see the settlement at Lantana Farm. I sounded a warning to them and said, gentlemen, there is a problem here. I told them that they had put these people into dungeon but Hon. Konga, who is my brother in marriage even asked me what my problem was. He further said that those were very beautiful houses compared to where those people came from. This is simply because he read an EIA which contained pictures of small hats and then he compared them to those little toilets, I am sorry to use that term, that the investment brought and made them live in. Six months later, these houses collapsed and that is a fact.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo: Madam Chairperson, I think that, that is a serious human rights abuse and the Human Rights Commission must be given the mandate go and see how those people in Itebe are living. They should go and see the effects of the displacement of internal nationals. It is a very serious affair that while we are sitting here, driving and drinking tea down stairs, some people do not have food because the land that they had been pushed to cannot support any agriculture.

Madam, the people who were living in Chizobo have been moved into the hills of Mabwetuba in Chikankanta Constituency as a result of colonisation. When will you learn a lesson that human rights is not simply about going to see how an inmate is being treated in prison. As a matter of fact, my understanding of a prisoner is that certain of his rights must be withdrawn including the right of association and conjugal rights. Why should you continue trumping on your own citizens rights and folding your arms like Hon. Holmes, our latest hon. Member of Parliament.


Mr Nkombo: Madam, there are many people on your left who do not have what it takes to speak the language that I am speaking and they have come to me. I am their consultant. They always ask me at tea break how I did this and that at Albidon. They want to know because their people are displaced as well. You are sitting on these people’s own human rights.

Madam, if we are not careful about how we deal with investment, we shall continue to trump upon our nationals’ human rights. One of these fine days, they shall come a more serious Government and they are going to indict the people on your right hand side.

Madam, this can be equated to the genocide in Rwanda because those people have forgotten. I am one of the  Batwa people Hon. Kalumba was speaking about. I am a Twa. The fact that a few remained in Chienge when we were coming from wherever we came from, does not mean that we actually have a better livelihood. If at all you cared, Dr Kalumba, probably you are my relative and you need to join this fight for human rights.


Mr Nkombo: It should not be confined to the prison cell.

Madam Chairperson, that was my message for this debate.

I thank you, Madam.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mpombo: Madam Chairperson, I just want to reiterate Government’s unswerving and unflinching commitments to the ideals of human rights.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mpombo: Madam, human rights and the rule of law remains a deeply engraved quality of the MMD Governance Policy.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear! 

Mr Mpombo: Hon. Chimbaka talked on conditions in the prison service and we have taken note of that. We have also taken note of the question of justice delivered in terms of dispensing of justice.

Dr Kalumba talked about the Batembo tribe. Zambia has seventy-two tribes and we will have to confirm whether these fall into that category considering that…


Mr Mpombo: … you are on a very sensitive border area, therefore, Government will need a few facts to be put straight, otherwise we could stray into serious problems. However, the Human Rights Commission are listening and they have captured this concern and we will try to delve into it.

Madam, Hon. Nkombo, I want to differ with you by saying that the mining issue in Mazabuka has been subjected to a lot of Government involvement through the Ministry of Mines and Minerals Development who have handled this particular matter. One time, I was reading a newspaper where Albidon was hailing your negotiation skills. I do not remember in which newspaper the article appeared but you were signing some document and you were being congratulated on your exemplary leadership attributes in reaching at that particular document. These are issues that I would say have been adequately covered by Government.

In conclusion, I would like to thank all the hon. Members for their wonderful contributions.

I thank you, Madam Chairperson.

Vote 34/01 ordered to stand part of the estimates.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

VOTE 21 ─ (Loans and Investments ─ Ministry of Finance and National Planning ─ K1,278,786,534,304) and 
VOTE 37 ─ (Ministry of Finance and National Planning ─  K1,329,135,480,736).

The Minister of Finance and National planning (Mr Magande): Madam Chairperson, I thank you for the opportunity given to me to present the Ministry of Finance and National Planning budget for the year 2008. The spirit of the year 2008 budget for the Ministry is based on the Mission Statement which reads as follows:

“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”

Madam Chairperson, the 2008 Budget Estimates for the Ministry of Finance and National Planning are presented against a backdrop of major achievements in the financial and economic management programmes and events in 2007. Key among these includes:

(i) the launch of Vision 2030;

(ii) the launch of the Fifth National Development Plan (FNDP);

(iii) excellent budget execution, which show a release of most of the revenues appropriated by this House;

(iv) production of the Integrated Financial Management Information Systems (IFMIS) blue prints;

(v)  continuation of quarterly treasury management  forums;

(vi) commencement of the Mining Development Agreements review;

(vii) hosting of the First Sector Advisory Groups Conference;

(viii) the finalisation of the Aid Policy and Strategy; and

(ix) the completion of the Joint Assistance Strategy for Zambia.

Madam Chairperson, the 2008 budget presents us with an opportunity to strengthen our performance gains and strengthen the focus on improving the linkages between work planning, budget execution, programme implementation, monitoring and evaluation.

Budgeting is primarily a matter of choices and trade-offs. Government decides how to meet agreed policy priorities and objectives within an agreed period using available resources. In preparing the 2008 budget, the Ministry of Finanace and National Planning adopted value-based planning as a resource allocation instrument that will attempt to address the performance value of strategies proposed by various departments and Grant Aided Institutions under the charge of the Ministry.

Madam, this approach will provide the Ministry with a basis for comparing performance retains with economic value added of resource allocation based on profile submissions from the Ministry’s departments and the Grant Aided Institutions.

Madam Chairperson, the Ministry’s mandate includes national planning and budgeting, economic and financial management, public investment and debt management, statistical affairs and economic and technical co-operation. This demands that the Ministry’s Estimates for 2008 be given utmost consideration due to their catalytic status for improvement of productivity both in the public and the private sector.

Madam Chairperson, in order to achieve this catalytic role, K1,300 trillion has been estimated under Head 21 of which:

1. K28 billion is GRZ contribution to various international organisations;

2. K115.8 billion is for several projects throughout  Government system;

3. K117.9 billion is for recapitalisation and investments in existing State institutions;

4. K27.4 billion is for techno-economic feasibility studies and designs for a number of capital projects;

5. K79 billion is for rural development programme and road rehabilitation;

6. K340.4 billion under the Road Fund is for routine maintenance;

7. K16.4 billion is for technical assistance;

8. K106.2 billion is for bridges and pontoons;

9. K233 billion Poverty Reduction Programmes (PRP) are for road infrastructure development;

10. K19.4 billion for road infrastructure rehabilitation ; and

11. K19.9 billion for national park roads.

Madam Chairperson, the Ministry has also put together programmes and activities totaling K1,329,135,480,736, under Head 37, of which the major expenditure items are:

1. K113 billion for statutory contributions i.e. employers share payable to NAPSA and Public Service Pensions Board;

2. K242.9 billion as grant support to a number of grant aided institutions;

3. K100 billion  for compensation and awards;

4. K144.4 billion as current year housing allowances;

5. K350.5 billion for dismantling of arrears in all the Ministries, Provinces, Spending Agencies (MPSA) related to supplies of goods and services, contractors, other personal emoluments and utilities;

6. K47.2 billion for personal emoluments related to constitutional offices;

7. K133.3 billion is for PEMFA activities; and

8. K268.6 billion for operational funds, Recurrent Departmental Charges and personal emoluments for the Ministry of Finanace and National Planning.

Madam Chairperson, a few of the key activities and programmes for 2008 would include continuing the hosting of quarterly treasury management consultations for controlling officers for all the Government systems, provinces, ministries and the spending agencies for them to clearly understand how we want them to control their expenditures. We will be revising the Ministerial Strategic Plan and also implementing the Total Quality Management (TQM), which was launched only a few days ago.

We will continue implementation of culture remodeling, a programme that brings information of what is available in the economy through the stakeholders. We intend to enhance the implementation of the IFMIS and, of course, conduct more Board of Surveys and auction sales of obsolete equipment in Government.

Madam Chairperson, the Budget Office will continue its role of preparing the Budget and Analysis and continue to work on the inter-governmental fiscal transfer system. The Government Stores will continue trading in common user goods for all the departments.

The Centralised Computer Services Department will be processing the GRZ Payroll and processing of GRZ information technology application systems and where possible, provide the necessary technical assistance to make sure the systems are working in order.

The office of the Accountant-General is responsible and will continue to pay for housing allowances. It will also be responsible for payments …

The Chairperson: Order!

Business was suspended from 1815 hours until 1830 hours.

[THE CHAIRPERSON in the Chair]

Mr Magande: Madam Chairperson, when business was suspended, I was saying that the Office of the Accountant-General will be responsible for paying for Constitutional Posts and centrally paying of housing allowances. As we indicated some time back, we want to make sure that we understand so that we do not accumulate unnecessary arrears. We are also responsible for dismantling some of the arrears incurred before December, 2002.

Madam Chairperson, one of the most important programmes is the PEMFA Reforms and this will fall under this particular office. In the Investment and Debt Management Office, we will continue to monitor, evaluate, control and report on external debt portfolio and monitoring of state-owned enterprises.  Indeed, we still have a bit of a problem on some of the residual of Parastatal Companies. We will manage and monitor Government securities and contingent liabilities where these might resurface.

Madam Chairperson, one of the important departments is the Central Statistical Office. This year, they will be continuing to conduct and hopefully complete the economic census and then, they will also be preparing activities on the 2010 census of population and housing. As we know, this is done in intervals of ten years, but the preparations have to be done well in advance to get the correct forms for presentation.

Madam Chairperson, under the Economic Management Department, we intend to develop the macro-economic model for National Planning and also develop macro and social economic indicator database so that we are able to understand what is happening in the economy.

Madam Chairperson, as my hon. Colleagues may be aware, we have been undertaking a programme with the International Community supervised by the IMF and we intend to enter into another programme although the programme that gave us debt relief is over now but since the IMF is responsible for severance of financial and fiscal issues of member countries, we have a programme which this department is going to continue to monitor.

Madam Chairperson, the National Planning Department will be compiling and disseminating progress reports on the implementation of the Fifth National Development Plan. We have a National Population Policy which was approved by Cabinet and we hope that this year, we will launch it and start disseminating what this means. We also intend to prepare district planning, monitoring and evaluation development plan manual so that at district level where most of us belong in terms of hon. Members of Parliament, we can clearly follow what is happening in Government programmes. We are also putting in place measures to establish regional planning units and hopefully this will go not only to provincial level, but there will go down to the provinces.

Madam Chairperson, we have a Monitoring and Evaluation Department which will development a computerised M & E System and provide technical back-stopping of Sector Advisory Groups (SAG) and Ministries, province and Spending Agencies (MPSA) on the M & E Framework.

Madam Chairperson, the National Policy and Programme Implementation Department will obviously develop an economic and social analysis framework and also come up with strategic policy implementation.

Madam Chairperson, clearly as seen from what I have indicated, my ministry is a coordinator of other Government departments. All the accounting staff in the Government system are from my ministry and therefore, that is a responsibility which we take very seriously.

Madam Chairperson, most of the staff who are involved in planning in the departments and ministries as we have now a division for planning will also come under my ministry. As we all are aware, the issue of collection of revenue comes under my ministry and we collect revenue from all the ministries in terms of the non-tax revenue and the department or the unit or the institution of Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) is responsible for collecting tax revenues. In fact, when you see some of the figures in the Yellow Book, they do not only apply to officers working at the Ministry of Finance and National Planning, but these will encompass officers who are elsewhere. For example, as I have already indicated, all my hon. Colleagues, Ministers, Deputy Ministers and High Court Judges are paid under my ministry. So when you see a figure there of K47 billion for Constitutional Emoluments, it includes all hon. Ministers in Government and all the Constitutional officers, it is not just my salary. I wish I could get that amount of money and obviously, I would not need to work for any longer.


Mr Magande: Therefore,  I would like to say that really, we expect to get support from the House so that we can quickly go and set up all these systems that we have promised to set up in order to make sure that we realise the revenues as you know that this year we are introducing very novel tax systems and to do that, we will need to work on these systems.

Madam Chairperson, in terms of delivery, one of the things in the revenue is a spectral area which I have to proudly announce that we did pay for scanning equipment at the borders and we hope to get perhaps two or three equipment and after that, we will be all set. We will not be harassing you to get into your container to see whether you are bringing a Hammer or a Mercedes Benz. The equipment will screen while we are waiting outside and we will know what you are carrying into the country and that will facilitate the movement of trade as we have heard.

 Hon. Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}


Mr Magande: Madam Chairperson, in conclusion, there is a general reduction in the proposed 2008 budget for my ministry, due to successive completion of some of the programmes which were implemented last year, under the 2007 to 2009 medium term expenditure framework and the fact that Government has made and undertaken to liquidate all arrears pertaining to pension funds and suppliers of goods and services. So this saw us paying quite a substantial amount last year and hopefully with the budget line that we have provided, we will be in a position to finish off this particular area.

Madam Chairperson, among the parastatals, we are also interested that they operate efficiently. Only this year, we are proposing to give some K2 billion to the Lusaka Stock Exchange so that in fact, they can install facilities for automated trading system at the Lusaka Stock Exchange. This will link the LUSE settlements to the national payment system which we started implementing last year.

In connection with this also, we have had discussions with the National Economic Advisory Council and we feel really that apart from them being in a position to advice my ministry, they should also be responsible for advising other ministries. We are discussing, perhaps a modality of transferring it to a neutral area, where they can, therefore, look at all the economic aspects of the whole Government system.

Madam Chairperson, in addition, we intend to promote team work amongst not only ministry officials, but also, all the other Government institutions so that most of our budget can be executed in good time. Although, some shortcomings were recorded in 2007, I want to say that all departments and grant aided institutions under the ministry will in 2008 enter and service charters. These are performance assessments frameworks with the controlling officer. These service charters will consequently become the basis for assessing the performance of each department and grant aided institutions. This spirit will instil continuous commitment in meeting the objectives and goals of the ministry and ensure that resources allocated in the 2008 budget are applied prudently.

Madam Chairperson, I hope that my colleagues will take interest in the programme that appears on television, on Sundays under culture remodelling. We also intend to be issuing statements on how we intend to move. Only two or three days ago, the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) did in fact, publish what they call service charter. Now, you can actually take that document and know how long it will take you to get your VAT refund. How long it will take to get your VAT registration. How long it will take you to make a complaint and within what time frame the officials are supposed to reply. We intend that all the departments are going to provide this public information so that we can be judged on the basis of what we promise in delivering to the people.

I thank you, Madam Chairperson.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi (Luena): Thank you, Madam Chairperson, for the opportunity to contribute to the debate on the estimates for the two Votes.

Madam Chairperson, all developmental efforts in any nation hinges on the availability and a proper utilisation of the financial resources of that nation. For this to happen, it is important that we as a nation must focus on these resources. Therefore, the Votes that we are debating are far more critical than the other Votes we have debated, for the simple reason that the Ministry of Finance and National Planning superintends over the resources of the whole country. Therefore, even as we debate the estimates for the ministry, it is important to understand their greater role of their management of the whole economy.

Vote 37, Madam Chairperson, has K1.279 trillion and Vote 18 has K1.329 trillion, but these sums even put together they pair into insignificance, if you look at the total budget over which the ministry superintends. Madam, our focus in debating the Votes must be on the totality of the budget because the performance of the Ministry of Finance and National Planning will determine whether we get the benefit of this budget or we do not.

Madam Chairperson, the budget as I have always said on the Floor of this House, is in two parts. There is the revenue side and there is the expenditure side. All too often, we spend all our time focusing on expenditure side and it is for this reason that almost all those who stand to debate on individual Votes, bring issues of the inadequacy of the amounts allocated to agriculture, education, health and any ministry that comes up for debate. That the monies allocated or even the percentage amounts allocated are not enough.

Madam Chairperson, this in itself indicates that the total budget that we have, the size of our budget is not enough. That is the problem that we have as a country. Madam, to begin to address this issue of the size of the budget, we need to look at the revenue. For the 2008 budget, we have a figure of K13.476 trillion as the total of the budget. For a country of this size and for the level of development or under development, that we currently are at, a figure of K13.476 is totally inadequate. That is why there are so many arguments, and people fighting for their share.

Madam Chairperson, if we look at the revenue side, it is important to advice the Minister of Finance and National Planning and indeed, all those to your right, that there is need as we move forward as a country to grow the revenue side.

Mr Munaile: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: Currently, there are two sources of revenue on the revenue side. There is the tax revenue and on the tax revenue, I can say ZRA are doing a commendable job, even although there is more that could be done. I would advice that we look at measures to widen the tax base. The reason that I am focusing on the revenue side is because a pronouncement has already been made in this House by the President of this country that more than ever before the people of Zambia are looking for accelerated development. The key word here is accelerated. You will not get accelerated development with the kind of money that we have. Therefore, there is need to widen the tax base. The informal sector, traders, marketeers and so on, mechanisms must be worked out that brings them into the tax bracket.

On the VAT side, Madam Chairperson, there is need to tighten up. When I stand on the Floor of this House I stand as an honest person and therefore, I speak my mind and speak things that I see. Who is not aware that many of the business people that we see carry parallel books? If you ask for a discount, they will ask you whether you want a VAT receipt or not.

Mr Munaile: Hear, hear! Tell them.

Mr Milupi: If we can see that, Madam Chairperson, is it too difficult for those on your right to work out a system where people like these can be caught.

Madam Chairperson, I now move on to company or corporate tax. There is need to tighten up on this because, as we have debated on other issues, there is going to be room here for what is called creative accounting. This means that profits are going to be understated and costs are going to be overstated through transfer pricing, contracts, mining and all sorts of ways. We need this to be tightened so that tax revenue is raised.

The other side of the revenue base is that of non-tax revenue. For this, as I have always said, I implore the ministries that collect non-tax revenue to ensure that they focus on this area. As I have said, other than two ministries so far that have reported substantial increases in their non-tax revenue, the other ministries remain quiet.

Mr Munaile: Why?

Mr Milupi: Let me remind them that this is an important area of their performance. The Ministries of Communications and Transport, Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources, Lands, Home Affairs, Justice, Foreign Affairs and Commerce, Trade and Industry all collect non-tax revenue. There is need to tighten the laws that deal with non-tax revenues so that these ministries can go out and collect even more than their targets that appear in the Yellow Book.

Madam Chairperson, the other side of non-tax revenue collecting entities are the parastatals. This is an area which we have allowed companies to go scot-free with the underperformance that is being exhibited. I have said before that none of our parastatals in this country in the last ten years or so, has performed or produced profit that can be taxed as corporate tax. Zambia Telecommunications Corporation (ZAMTEL), Zambia Postal Services (ZAMPOST), Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO), Zambia State Insurance Corporation (ZSIC) and Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines (ZCCM) -Investments Holdings have all not performed. It is as if they were created merely to provide a service. They were created to have a return on the investment that we the Zambian people have put in these parastatals.

For these companies to perform there is need for the supervising ministries to ensure that those appointed to the boards that run these companies understand what commercial entities ought to perform like. When we do that, we the Zambian people will be entitled to expect a return on the assets that have been employed. Madam Chairperson, ZESCO, has an asset base of US$1.3 billion. In corporate management, a 10 per cent or 15 per cent return on those investments will indicate to you that we should expect US$200 million to US$300 million from those companies alone. With regard to ZCCM-Investment Holdings, we have talked about it and I do not need to go through that again.

The Ministry of Finance and National Planning is also responsible for planning. On page 1, paragraph 4 of the speech by the hon. Minister says that their cherished aim is to achieve the aims of Vision 2030. Let me just say briefly that our current per capita income is US$1000 per person. According to the World Bank, if we are to qualify as a medium income nation now, we should have a per capita income of US$6000. With a population of 11 million people, it means that our Gross Domestic Produce (GDP) should be US$66 billion. Currently it stands at US$11 billion and so there is need to grow it from the US$11 billion that it is to US$66 billion that it should be, if we are to be a medium income country.

But over that we have to impose the fact that our population is growing at 3 per cent annually. The fact that even as we are factoring in a 7 per cent GDP growth, the rest of the world on average, we are told, is growing at 5 per cent. So our real GDP growth is 7 per cent minus 5 per cent gives us 2 per cent. We superimpose on that population growth if we continue with the plans for 7 per cent, means our real GDP growth is minus 1 per cent. At that rate, we shall never ever achieve Vision 2030 and so there is need to go back and look at the sums.

Mr Munaile: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: Madam Chairperson, with the time available I must look at the expenditure side, which I always do. On the expenditure side, the recurrent sides must be shared equitably.

Mr Munaile: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: When I look at emoluments, the current system of paying in Zambia, which is based or biased towards allowances, means that those who speak the loudest get the most through allowances and all sorts of things. There is need to make it more equitable.

With regard to the capital side of things, capital expenditure in any organisation or country is the foundation of development. The development of this country will only move forward if we invest well in capital projects. In order to do this, every capital project that this country embarks on, must have three returns. This means that the project must be completed on time, be of quality that is expected and within cost.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: You do not need to go to the sangomas to get those three elements. These are the elements that we need to focus on. However, if we look at what we have done in this country, none of the projects that we embark upon, other than those that were done in the First Republic like this building, were completed on time, within cost and with quality.

Mr Munaile: Tabafishiba.

Mr Milupi: The typical example that was given the other day, is this short-cut from Luanshya, the Fisenge-Luanshya turn-off, …

Major Chibamba: It is finished!

Mr Milupi: … where after one year, in fact less than one year, a road that was beautiful now has potholes. Therefore, it was not done to expected quality, is not going to last a long time and we are not going to get a return on that investment. For this, those on your Right who superintend over the ministries and their controlling officers must make sure that they tighten up. If they do that …

Mr Munaile: Quality!

Mr Milupi: … we now stand a better chance of ensuring that this country develops.

Major Chibamba: They are quiet.

Mr Milupi: Madam Chairperson, in the last two minutes that I have, let me look at the other issue which comes in every year and that is misappropriation. The financial regulations are very clear and were not made by this House but by those on your Right, through their ministries. They are their own financial regulations. Why do we not obey them? I have gone through those financial regulations and they are very good.

Mr Lubinda: Bauzwa.

Mr Milupi: Just as a start, if we obey these regulations, we will have moved forward and the issues that are raised by the Auditor-General would disappear overnight.

Madam Chairperson, the last point I want to make is that when you have an auditing function in an organisation, either as an external or internal auditor, you ought to pay attention to what the audit report says. Not only should you pay attention but you should take actions to ensure that the issues that were raised in the previous audit are addressed and therefore, they do not arise in the next audit. That is how organisations work.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: That is how this country should work. I implore those on your Right that these are simple matters.

Mr Munaile: Presidential material!

Mr Milupi: Please, address them now. They do not have to wait until I am there in 2011 to address them.


Mr Milupi: With that, I thank you, Madam.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo (Bangweulu): Madam Chairperson, let me record my sincere appreciation to you for giving me this opportunity to support this Vote.

In doing so, I would like to once again advise my colleague the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to make sure that we reduce on borrowing. That is my timely advice because the more you borrow, the more you surrender your sovereignty and powers to the same person who is lending you the money.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: You are aware, Madam Chairperson, that as Zambians when we over borrowed beyond our capacity and to pay back the loan, we were given a very embarrassing name of Heavily Indebted Poor Country (HIPC). Even when you were moving along Cairo Road or assuming that you were undertaking a tour of maybe Northern Province and even when disembarking from a plan, that tag was ably seen on your face that you have come from a country which has been given a funny name. I am not proud of that name. We committed a lot of mistakes by over borrowing and we should not repeat the same mistake.

Madam Chairperson, you recall that Zambians were called upon to sacrifice every minute, hour and day; and that they were going to see light at the end of the tunnel. However, up to now, a poor Zambian has not seen that light at the end of the tunnel.

Hon. Minister, since we have been forgiven by the so-called good Samaritans the donors, let us make use of our resources to implement our decisions.

Madam Chairperson, I am aware that at some point we may be forced to borrow to supplement our local efforts, but we should not make it a policy that all our commitments will be translated into actions by using borrowed money. A borrower, Madam, will never be respected anywhere in the world. Even at my level, if I over borrow from my colleagues, I will never be respected. In fact, when the same people come to me to collect what I got from them, I may even be forced to run away or tell my wife that when these people come, please tell them that I am not around and yet, I have locked myself up in the bedroom.

It is the same even at Government level, when you borrow a lot of money, you will never be respected by the same person who has lent you that amount of money. You will end up becoming a prisoner in one way or another.

Madam Chairperson, I would like to tell the hon. Minister that, that should be a point of departure. In fact, if you are able to read a number of articles which appeared in one of the international papers and also a document which was made available to all of us by Parliament from one of the international journals, you can reflect on what has been recorded in that journal about borrowing and over borrowing.

At one point one of the contributors to the same journal indicated that, for example, when you borrow just one dollar from America, by the time it reaches your country, you will be able to receive 20 cents because a lot of money would have been spent on a number of transactions. And when it comes to paying back the same loan, you will pay back the US Dollar plus 20 cents, meaning that even the 80 cents which you did not use will be paid back.

Madam Chairperson, if the hon. Minister has misplaced it I will be kind enough to make it available to him again tomorrow and I will give him the same article in the same issue so that he reflects on it.

Beyond that there are a number of writers also who contributed to the same journal and indicated that, in fact, a number of countries that had restructured their economies under the Restructuring Programme have not even succeeded economically. They have become prisoners of their freedom, so to speak.

Madam Chairperson,  as we move forward, let us not convert Zambians into prisoners again. Let them be given a breathing space. After sacrificing a lot, they were assured in this House and elsewhere that they will be able to see that comfort. Unfortunately, the people of Bangweulu Constituency have not yet seen that comfort, they are still living on a meal per day if they are luck.

Madam Chairperson, if you move into our offices, you will find that a poor Zambian who is a civil servant cannot even have a decent meal at lunch time. Most of them have taken to playing Nsolo at lunch time because they cannot afford a meal. Beyond that, some of them have taken to prayer meetings at lunch time just to beat hunger because they cannot manage to buy themselves food at lunch time. You visit a number of Government offices and you will see all these people at lunch time conducting prayer meetings and these are facts.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: It is not that they have been converted into Christianity now, no.


Mr Kasongo: That is what poverty can do because you have no option except to pretend by converting oneself into an artificial Christian. Madam Chairperson, our Cabinet Ministers can find time to drive to their respective houses everyday to have decent meals at lunch, a civil servant is not doing that. Look at their salaries, they are getting peanuts but by the end of the day, the same people who are getting peanuts are over taxed and you are smiling in your own country. When are you going to provide that comfort to a Zambian who has suffered or sacrificed a lot?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: There must be a limit. In our planning efforts, we should be able to say that from this time to that time all Zambians will be living decently. Unfortunately, this is not happening. Look at the plight of this office orderly, clerical officer and even a top civil servant who cannot even manage to buy three meals a day for the family. The people who provide statistics to us have recorded that a family of six in Lusaka and beyond is supposed to spend about K1.6 million in order for them to manage that food I am talking about. When you compare with the amount of money that they are getting per day, they cannot even manage to provide for their families. I even wonder how my in-laws the Tonga have managed to survive by adding to the number of wives that they have.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo: In a nutshell, I would like to appeal to you to make sure that the Government of the day begins to distance itself from all this. Otherwise…

Mr Muyanda: On a point of order, Madam Chairperson!

The Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Hon. Government Members: In-laws!

Mr Muyanda: Madam Chairperson, it is not my character and nature to raise a point of order on an hon. Member of Parliament who was debating very intelligently but strayed into suggesting that the Tongas suffer the most and they are destitute in-laws. Is he in order to state that we are suffering in-laws? Madam Chairperson, I need a serious ruling on whether it has now become the order of this House to disgrace and denounce in-laws.


Madam Chairperson: The Chair will really rule on this very serious point of order. The seriousness of this point of order is that in fact the hon. Member who raised the point of order was supposed to help the Chair that in this House there are no in-laws. If he has qualified himself and others as in-law, the Chair is not part of this relationship.

Will the hon. Member for Bangweulu continue, please.


Mr Kasongo: The other piece of advice I would like to give to the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning with regard to the raising of revenue is to put emphasis, as my colleague has ably pointed out, on non-tax revenue. Chirundu is gold in my view and so is Kasumbalesa and many other border areas. All we need to do is strengthen the personnel that is responsible for collecting the money.

Madam Chairperson, the Road Traffic Agency is another area where we can collect a lot of revenue, except that we have been so weak in addressing this issue. I do not know why.

Madam, my colleague and Chairperson of the Public Accounts Committee will confirm that in fact, when you go to any of the border areas, you will be able to see the potential of raising revenue to the extent that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning cannot even commit this country to additional loans. It is a question of commitment. He should strengthen the Office of the Accountant-General.

Madam Chairperson, in other countries, that office is key to revenue collection. However, in our own country, we look at the Office of the Accountant-General as just one of the ordinary offices. In other countries, the Accountant-General does not even leave his office at 1700 hours, he leaves office when  he has collected information from the operatives in terms of how much revenue they have collected in that particular day. He will, thereafter, pass this information to the Permanent Secretary in that Ministry and subsequently to the Minister of Finance and National Planning.

Madam Chairperson, it is not happening in our own country. The Accountant-General is just like any officer. Madam, the Accountant-General must be given sufficient powers and he or she should also be allowed to move from one border area to another to see what is happening there. You have done a commendable job at Chirundu, for example. However, what I would like to see beyond that is for Government talking to the locals so that they can shift from that place so that we have clear passages for our vehicles and we will be able to generate a lot of revenue. You can talk to the locals about compensation.

Madam Chairperson, if you are going to undertake that project of beautifying all our border areas, all you need to do is to commit 10 per cent of the money being generated by the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) to be ploughed back into beautifying all these border areas. You do not have to go to Japan or any other country to borrow the money. No. Just plough back 10 per cent of the revenue being generated by the ZRA and you can perform wonders within a short time. This is another area that you should address hon. Minister.

Madam, in terms of prudent management of our resources, as a matter of emphasis, you see, it is so painful when you approve funds in this House only to hear the following day, that the same amount of money which should have been used to deliver goods and services to the poorest of the poor has been misappropriated and those who are found wanting are promoted the following day.


Mr Kasongo: There is nothing as painful as promoting a person who has committed a serious crime…

The Chairperson: Order!

(Debate adjourned)



[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

(Progress reported)



The Minister of Defence (Mr Mpombo): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.


The House adjourned at 1917 hours until 1430 hours on Thursday, 28th February, 2008.