Debates- Wednesday, 6th February, 2006

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Wednesday, 6th February, 2008

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]




Mr Nyirenda’s mobile phone rang during the prayer.

Mr Speaker: Order! The mobile phone will be surrendered now!

A House Messenger got the phone from Mr Nyirenda.




109. Dr Kalumba (Chienge) asked the Minister of Education:

(a) what the status of the contract for the construction of Mununga High School by Tomorrow Investments Limited was; and

(b) whether the Government had any plans to re-assign the contract for failure to perform.

The Deputy Minister of Education (Mr Sinyinda): Mr Speaker, the school being built in Chienge District is a basic school and Tomorrow Investments Limited has had difficulties in completing the project. The hon. Minister of Works and Supply has since blacklisted Tomorrow Investments Limited and directed the National Council for Construction (NCC) not to renew the firm’s 2008 registration certificate because the firm had performed badly.

With regard to part (b) of the question, the project is therefore, going to be allocated to another contractor to complete once instructions are given by the Ministry of Works and Supply. The Auditor-General has since been directed to investigate the award of contracts to Tomorrow Investments Limited whose outcome is awaited by the ministry to start the tendering process for the remaining works.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kalumba: Mr Speaker, with regard to the action that has been taken, could the hon. Minister give us an indication of the timeline it would take for a new contractor to be on site.

The Minister of Education (Professor Lungwangwa)(on behalf of the Minister of Works and Supply (Mr Simbao): Mr Speaker, the timeline will depend on the outcome of the investigations by the Auditor-General’s office.

I thank you, Sir.


110. Mr Chanda (Kankoyo) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a) how many public toilets were in Mufulira;

(b) of these, how many directly service the markets;

(c) who runs the toilets; and

(d) whether there were any plans to construct modern toilets in all the markets country-wide.

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Dr Kazonga): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform this august House that there are twenty-three public toilets in Mufulira and out of those eleven directly service the markets.

Mr Speaker, four toilets are run by individuals, five by the market committees while the remaining fourteen are run by the council. There are also plans to construct modern toilets in all markets in the country. The construction of toilets will be done by councils through the markets and bus stations boards.

Mr Speaker, the House may also wish to know that the ministry disbursed K2 billion to councils to start constructing public toilets. Mufulira Municipal Council, where Kankoyo Constituency is, received K100 million.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chanda: Mr Speaker, why is it that in each and every town in Zambia there are more bars and restaurants than public toilets. Is this not an inconvenience to the public?

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, the cardinal point is having these sanitation facilities. Sir, whether there are bars or not, even those bars will need appropriate sanitation facilities, and this is why this Government has tried to assist the local authorities. The K200 billion that was released is as a result of recognising the importance of having these facilities for members of the public. This will continue even this year so that as we implement the 2008 International Day of Sanitation, we shall pay particular attention to ensuring that public places have toilets.

With regard to the issue of the mushrooming of bars, we have a legal instrument that is in place and we shall ensure that local authorities monitor what is happening. However, as far as toilets are concerned, we are doing our best to ensure that the local authorities provide these required services.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Speaker: Order! The Chair wishes to guide the House on matters like this one. It is up to you, of course, to consider debating this matter of good or poor taste in this House, but the Chair knows that by law all of you are Members of your respective councils. Why do you not deal with these matters in those councils instead of waiting and bringing up these matters in the National Assembly?

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Why do you do that?


111. Mr Kambwili (Roan) asked the Minister of Home Affairs:

(a) what measures the Government had taken to curb the ever increasing acts of corruption by traffic officers; and

(b) whether the Government would reduce the current number of traffic police officers and deploy them into other duties in order to curb the rampant corruption.

The Deputy Minister of Home Affairs (Mr Bonshe): Mr Speaker, our response is as follows:

(a) Sensitisation seminars among traffic officers against engaging themselves in corruption are under way. There is a re-training of traffic officers with a bias for anti-corruption lessons. A course is to be undertaken at Lilayi Police Training Centre, sponsored by the Anti-Corruption Commission. We have put in place an in-house mechanism of monitoring corruption, spearheaded by the Police Public Complaints Authority. In addition, an integrity Committee has been initiated in the police which acts as a watch dog against corruption; and

(b) The number of traffic police officers has already been right-sized. The number of Police Check Points has also been cut down.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, why is it that at a particular roadblock, you will find more than seven police officers and yet for general duties they will tell you that they do not have enough manpower. Why is it so?

The Minister of Home Affairs (Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha): Mr Speaker, the terms of reference in most cases require the numbers of police officers to be deployed according to those terms of reference. Therefore, if the hon. Member of Parliament has seen many police officers in those roadblocks, it means that their terms of reference require many of them to be there.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister of Home Affairs whether he is aware that the deplorable conditions of service obtaining in the Police Force is one of the contributing factors to the high corruption cases in the institution.

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Speaker, our ministry and this Government has made several ministerial statements in this august House and also answered many questions on how this Government is dealing with the issues of deplorable conditions of service that our police officers are living in. My ministry is spearheading the purchase and construction of many houses as well as improving the pay that the police are taking home.

Further, the word use of high rate of corruption is not necessary that of the police, we are aware that there are bad eggs in the Police Force, but to label everybody as corrupt will be wrong.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Munaile (Malole): Mr Speaker, in some instances, the police at road blocks force motorists to pay there and then even when the law states that you can pay within seven days. What is Government doing to ensure that this law is adhered to by the police officers?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Speaker, in our answer to the question raised by the hon. Member for Roan, Hon. Kambwili, we covered this area. As we are sitting in this august House, there is a seminar that is running at Lilayi Police Training Centre to cover the exact concerns that the hon. Member for Malole has brought out in order for us to ensure that traffic officers operate professionally.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo): Mr Speaker, may I know how the Government hopes to curb this corruption now when the general public has been taking complaints on the corrupt activities of police officers in certain police stations, but no action is taken and officers are left there to continue working?

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Speaker, whenever and wherever a case of corruption arises in the police stations when the members of the public complain, we have institutions that have been put in place in order to ensure that the complaints are heard. The Police Public Complaint Authority is one such institution that operates very effectively and action shall and will be taken through the Police Complaints Authority. Similarly, the Integrity Committee that has been put in place is also available for such complaints. My office and that of many of my Deputy Ministers and the Permanent Secretary are available for such complaints for us to take action.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Simuusa (Nchanga): Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister of Home Affairs aware that there are no road licences in most centres in the country and yet the police as at now are harassing motorists and arresting them for not having those road licences, if he is aware, can the hon. Minister issue a statement to direct the police not to harass motorists until these road licences are available.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Speaker, my ministry does not deal with the road licenses, it deals with the enforcement of the law that every car that is on the road must carry some form of road licence or an indication why they are not carrying the road licence.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe (Chadiza): Mr Speaker, may I find out from the hon. Minister what protective measures there are for the whistle blowers who are blowing whistles for people who are corrupt.

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Speaker, we have measures but I do not wish to publicise them in this august House for the public to hear in order for us to protect the whistle blowers. However, what I can assure the public and indeed, the hon. Member for Chadiza is that all whistle blowers that bring information to the hierarchy of the police are protected.

I thank you, Sir.


112. Mr C. K. Banda, SC. (Chasefu) asked the Minister of Works and Supply when works on the following roads in Chasefu Parliamentary Constituency would be undertaken:

(i) grading of the Tigone/Kapekesa Road;

(ii) rehabilitation of the Hoya/Mbenje/Kamuzowole Road; and

(iii) rehabilitation of the Hoya/Chankhama/Boyole Road.
The Deputy Minister of Works and Supply (Mr Ndalamei): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the august House that Tigone/Kapekesa Road, Hoya/Mbenje/Kamuzowele Road and Hoya/Chankhama/Boyole Road respectively were in the 2006 Budget included under the routine maintenance and spot improvement feeder road programme in the Eastern Province. All the three roads above received routine maintenance from April, 2006, to August, 2007 when the contracts expired.

Spot improvements were carried out and completed on certain sections of the roads in order to improve and restore accessibility. The Ministry wishes to report that in the 2006/2007 rainy season most of the roads were heavily damaged by floods which occurred in the province.

The Ministry through the RDA in June, 2007, approved recommendations by a consultant to vary the existing contract for routine maintenance and spot improvement on feeder roads in the Eastern Province to include the repair and improvement of the drainage and drainage structures only.

Mr Speaker, the funds available were not sufficient to rehabilitate the roads. As stated yesterday, in the 2008 annual plan, provision has been made for the maintenance of feeder roads. The local districts councils including Lundazi District Council will identify the feeder roads to be included in the feeder roads maintenance programme by virtue of being appointed a road authority.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr C.K. Banda, SC.: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister aware that no road maintenance was ever carried out on these roads in the year 2006 to 2007 and that the roads are in deplorable condition?

Mr Ndalamei: Mr Speaker, it was not complete maintenance as only certain parts and not the whole road was maintained. According to our report, the maintenance was done in April, 2006, to August, 2007, and in this year’s Budget there is money and we hope that the State Counsel will liaise with Lundazi District Council to put the roads in this year’s programme.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chizhyuka (Namwala): Mr Speaker, I would like to benefit from the answer given by the hon. Minister whether, in fact, he has in addition any plans to post emergency recovery on the Choma/Namwala Road to enable the people of Namwala access Choma and Lusaka given that there is no free movement of people and goods as at now.

Mr Speaker: Order! The Minister of Works and Supply may supply the answer as a matter of compassion.


The Minister of Works and Supply (Mr Simbao): Mr Speaker, the issue that the hon. Member for Namwala has raised is a serious issue and I would like him to understand that the Vice-President is very actively involved in trying to resolve issues of this nature.

Mr Speaker, this is the point I need to probably tell the House that at Works and Supply we do not have the line for emergencies. I wish we had the line for emergencies. The hon. Member would have seen me on that road by now, but we do not have that line. It is under the Office of the Vice-President and therefore, we will work according to the directives given to us by the Office of the Vice-President. However, I want to tell him that the Vice-President is very busy right now trying to look into all those issues of disasters in this country.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Chisala (Chilubi): Mr Speaker, could the hon. Minister tell this august House the action the ministry takes when funds for road rehabilitation are mismanaged by the provincial administration.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Simbao: Mr Speaker, it is a difficult question, but if the hon. Member is referring to an issue that is well known of the Chaba/Nsombo Road, I would like to say that the issue has been investigated by the internal auditors and it is about to be transferred to the Anti-Corruption Commission.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Simbao: Otherwise we do not have anything else we can do if somebody misuses money apart from handing him over to the law enforcement agencies and that is what we are doing.

Mr Chisala: Hear, hear!

Mr Malama (Mfuwe): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister of Works and Supply whether they have started sending money to councils since they have been telling us that they have asked their agents to work on feeder roads in these districts.

Mr Simbao: Mr Speaker, the money has not yet been sent to the councils. The money will have to be approved by this House before the Ministry of Finance and National Planning can start disbursing it. Mr Speaker, what is important now is for the councils to select the priority roads so that they can be consolidated at the Ministry of Local Government and Housing. That money will be apportioned depending on the capacity and capability of that particular council. If there are some councils that have not built capacity, they will probably not benefit anything from the money that will be shared from the Ministry of Local Government and Housing and therefore, this is the time for councils to put up their lists and send to the mother ministry.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}


113. Mr I Banda (Lumezi) asked the Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives:

(a) how much dairy farming is being practiced in the Eastern Province and which districts are affected;

(b) how many animals are in the province and how much milk is produced on a daily average; and

(c) whether there are any plans to encourage dairy farming in other districts of the Eastern Province such as Lundazi and, if so, when.

The Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives (Mr Mulonga): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that dairy farming in the Eastern Province is very limited. It is practiced in Chipata District at Chinjara. Other small holdings supported by Heifer International also exist in the province notably in Katete and Chadiza. This is an ongoing dairy project and is expected to expand to other districts as more farmers and markets are identified.

In response to part (b) of the question, as per 2006/2007 census, there are 306,668 cattle in the province and commercially, the daily average milk production is about 234 litres.

With regard to part (c) of the question, there are long term plans to promote and encourage dairy farming in other district of the Eastern Province. Currently, the artificial insemination station in Katete is being rehabilitated, although there are problems with squatters. When this work is complete, the plan is to select good cows from the herds of cattle owners for insemination with semen of dairy bulls so as to eventually produce or establish a dairy herd.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr I. Banda: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister aware that improving on dairy farming would create employment and improve living conditions of the people?

Mr Mulonga: Mr Speaker, the Government fully realises that importance and that is why it is in the plan to select, in the near future, those good cows from herds of cattle owners for insemination with semen so that, as the industry expands, more employment will be created for our people.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, there was an exercise of crossbreeding of dairy breeding with Angoni Cattle in Mazabuka, some years back, would the hon. Minister consider transferring that breed so that a lot of people are able to start with crossbreeds before they can go with the pure breeds?

Mr Mulonga: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member has raised a very good point and as  Government, we will take that into consideration when we start this expansion.

I thank you, Sir.


114. Mr Chimbaka (Bahati) asked the Minister of Home Affairs:

(a) which law or authority empowers the police to levy citizens who wish to obtain police reports, particularly those required by medical institutions;

(b) how much revenue was raised from the levy at (a) above from 2002 to 2007, year by year; and

(c) how the revenue raised at (b) above was expended.

 Mr Bonshe: Mr Speaker, I wish to respond that the law or authority that empowers the police to levy members of the public for various activities is the Zambia Police (Fees) Regulations, 2006 (Statutory Instruments No. 10 of 2006) and the Financial Act No. 15 of 2004. However, police reports required by medical institutions are completely free. The medical form known as ZP Form 33 is not to be paid for.

Mr Speaker, since these services are free, no revenue was raised during the period 2002 to 2007, and the revenue was not raised, as a result, one cannot expend on what was not raised.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chimbaka: Mr Speaker, although there are no records showing that revenue was raised, people have been levied. What are you doing, as a service, to educate policemen and women who were engaged in such unacceptable standards to refrain from doing so?

The Minister of Home Affairs (Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha): Mr Speaker, wherever such cases are reported, it is necessary that we are informed because instructions have been issued to curb this illegal practice. Therefore, the public can complain to the various arms of the police in order to remove this area of infringement.

I thank you, Sir.


115. Mr Hamusonde (Nangoma) asked the Minister of Energy and Water Development how many dams have been constructed in Nangoma Parliamentary Constituency from 2001 to-date.

The Deputy Minister of Energy and Water Development (Ms Lundwe): Mr Speaker, I would like to inform the House that no dams were constructed from 2001 in Nangoma Parliamentary Constituency.

However, the Ministry of Energy and Water Development has prioritised the rehabilitation of dams in Nangoma Parliamentary Constituency before any new constructions. Two dams will be rehabilitated and these are Nangoma and Mashili dams. The works on these dams will include vegetation control and desilting of Mashili Dam and repair of spillway and termite control on Nangoma Dam.

Other dams rehabilitated in Mumbwa District in the last three years include the Chibula Dam in 2004; Chiwena and Chibolyo dams in 2006; and Butinti Dam in 2007.

Mr Speaker, I thank you, Sir.

Mr Shakafuswa: Hear, hear!

Mr Sejani (Mapatizya): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister what percentage of the Irrigation Fund has been earmarked for dam construction since no meaningful irrigation can be expected to take place especially among small-scale farmers without, first of all, providing dams.

The Minister of Energy and Water Development (Mr Konga): Mr Speaker, the Irrigation Fund, as stipulated by Government, is supposed to be a fund which the private sector is supposed to access to develop various irrigation facilities. As such, members of the public who wish to construct dams from this fund should apply. Therefore, Government, at this stage, cannot determine what percentage of this fund will be used specifically to construct dams.

I thank you, Sir.

Major Chizhyuka: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether it is a good idea that Itezhi-tezhi Dam was constructed. Given the fact that the water of the Itezhi-tezhi Dam will soon be drowning the entire Namwala when Namwala District has not been benefiting from the electricity arising from the functionality of that dam. Is there any reason for the Ila people to maintain that dam thereafter especially that we are benefiting nothing from it except to drown.


Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Minister of Energy and Water Development may consider answering the question on compassionate grounds.


Mr Konga: Mr Speaker, I am grateful that you have allowed me to answer this question on compassionate grounds. Hon. Members of this House must realise first and foremost that Zambia is a military state.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Konga: Sir, the assets of this country are supposed to be utilised for the benefit of all the citizens of this country. The construction of the dam at Itezhi-tezhi is a reservoir for the generation of power at Kafue Gorge which is supposed to be used for national development in the whole country. Whereas, some of our citizens might be affected due to rising water levels, Government is taking mitigating factors to facilitate and assist these people. The Government would like to inform all the hon. Members of this House that we must be thinking about the assets of this country at a national level and not at a very simple individual tribal level.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order! I hope we are not going back to that dam that was on compassionate grounds as I said. Can we please have something else?

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has brought important points that there is need for everyone to adhere to the national project. I would like to know whether the ministry would, in cases where national projects become necessary, to secure land which is on higher ground to these people. Would that be considered because on the Zambezi where our people drowned, there were other factors and now the situation is worsening? Could land be considered so that there is compassion for the people that adhere to national projects?

Mr Konga: Mr Speaker, Government is very considerate for all its people in all parts of the country. Mr Speaker, for any project to take off nowadays, first of all, an environmental inter-assessment is actually carried out to determine the environmental degradation and its effects on the local people for that community. Therefore, to answer that question, I would like to say that Government will take into account and if necessary, to move people to upper grounds when a case arises.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.



116. Mr Mabenga (Mulobezi) asked the Minister of Home Affairs when the ministry would renovate the police posts at Mulobezi and Sichili in Mulobezi Parliamentary Constituency as a way of supplementing local initiatives.

The Deputy Minister of Home Affairs (Ms Njapau): Mr Speaker, I wish to state that this will be attended to when funds will be available.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mabenga: Mr Speaker, in view of the answer by the hon. Minister, is she aware that I asked this question because facilities that are supposed to support the work of the police are not there and what has been done by the local people is not enough for the work of the police in the constituency.

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Speaker, I wish to tell the hon. Member that everything possible is being done. As soon as our budgetary allocations are passed by this august House, we will support and give the facilities that are lacking at Mulobezi. For example, there is need for us to provide a vehicle and we are also aware of the difficulties that both police stations are having.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwangala (Nalolo): Mr Speaker, arising from the…

Major Chizhyuka: On a point of order, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Major Chizhyuka: Mr Speaker, I rise on a very serious point of order. Is the hon. Minister of Energy and Water Development in order to suggest that even in the remotest sense, the plight of the people who might be subject to drowning along similar lines as those who drowned when the Kariba Dam was being formed…

Mr Shakafuswa interrupted.

Major Chizhyuka: You shut up!


Mr Speaker: Order! Withdraw that remark.

Major Chizhyuka: Mr Speaker, I withdraw that remark but the hon. Member should behave himself.


Mr Speaker: Order! There is only one Presiding Officer here.

Major Chizhyuka: Mr Speaker, I withdraw that remark.

Sir, Is the hon. Minister in order to suggest that when we rise on the Floor of this House to put forward the dangers associated with the construction of the Itezhi-tezhi Dam to which we, the owners of the land have benefited absolutely nothing is being tribal. I need your serious ruling considering that there are tribal wars in Kenya. Sir, statements arising from a hon. Minister like this one might, in fact, fuel similar tribal wars in our country. I seek your serious ruling, Mr Speaker.


Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member for Namwala takes issue with regard to the supplementary question he asked earlier which was, in fact, unrelated to the main question on the Order Paper. However, I allowed the hon. Minister of Energy and Water Development to deal with this matter on compassionate grounds and he dealt with that matter on those grounds.

Quite clearly, one word in the hon. Minister’s answer has not gone down well with the feelings of the hon. Member for Namwala. Normally, I would have ruled that points of order must be raised promptly, preferably, once while the person or the officer or in this case the hon. Minister who was dealing with the matter was still speaking. I do note, however, that, in fact, the hon. Member had wanted to raise that point of order and he was not given leverage to do so. It is necessary in the interest of harmony, however, in this particular case, and bearing in mind other guidance or rulings I have made on the matter of race, tribe, sex, etc, that the hon. Minister is given the opportunity to withdraw that word. Hon. Minister, we have given you the opportunity to withdraw that word.

Mr Konga: Mr Speaker, I used the word tribal but I do not know on what basis the word “tribal” can be withdrawn …

Mr Speaker: Order! Hon. Minister, it is so easy to simply withdraw that word, instead of justifying anything else.

Mr Konga: Mr Speaker, I withdraw that word.


Mr Speaker: Order!  I will not allow you to pick up quarrels in this House, let alone fights. I will not allow that. Will the hon. Member for Nalolo continue, please.

Mr Mwangala:  Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister aware that the two police posts, Mulobezi and Sichili are beyond either rehabilitation or renovation, but are in need of re-construction?

Ms Njapau: Mr Speaker, we are aware, that is why in our answer we said when money is available, we will do everything possible.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


117. Mr Hamududu (Bweengwa) asked the Minister of Education whether the Government is aware that Bweengwa Parliamentary Constituency had no high school and, if so, when a high school would be built in the constituency.

Mr Sinyinda:  Mr Speaker, the Ministry is aware of the need for a high school in Bweengwa. However, the construction of a high school in the area will be considered when resources become available.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, I would like to ask the hon. Minister whether he will continue saying, “when resources are available” every time these questions come. Is it not time he gave us a work plan, whether he will do it in 2012 or 2030? We simply want to know.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hear, hear!

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member is aware that the development of the education sector is dependant on the availability of resources.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, through you, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister of Education whether he is aware that there is no high school between Monze town and Namwala, in which Bweengwa Constituency lies, and that due to their policies of abolishing boarding schools in the country, most of the pupils in Bweengwa Constituency cannot access high school education and that is the reason why they are failing to win any seat in Bweengwa.


Mr Speaker: Order! Your last utterance has ruined your supplementary question. Withdraw the later part …


Mr Speaker: …and the hon. Minister of Education will answer.

Mr Mwiimbu: I withdraw. They may win in future.


Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, the answer is that we are aware and that is why we stated in our principle response that we are aware of the situation.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Hachipuka (Mbabala): Mr Speaker, we know what schools have been planned for in the Fifth National Development Plan. Could we know if Bweengwa High school is in the 2030 vision of his Ministry?

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, as I stated, the construction of a high school in Bweengwa is a matter that we know to be very important and consideration to that effect will be made as resources become available.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


118. Mr D. Mwila (Chipili) asked the Minister of Foreign Affairs:

(a) how much money the Government spent to host the 27th SADC Ordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government in August, 2007, and;

(b)    what the economic benefits to the nation were.

The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs (Professor F. Phiri): Mr Speaker, the Government spent K16,152,140,434.13 to host the SADC Summit in August, 2007.

Mr Speaker, the expenditure is in accordance with the minimum standards of hosting SADC meetings. It should be noted that it is the obligation of each SADC Member State to host the Summit on a rotational basis annually. The Summit is the supreme policy making institution of SADC, responsible for the overall policy formulation and control of functions for SADC, which aim to attain a high degree of harmonised regional policies and procedures.

Mr Speaker, with regard to (b) of the question, I wish to inform this House that some of the economic benefits of belonging to a regional integration arrangement include:

(i) deepening regional integration in the Southern African region in order to improve the living standards of its citizens;

(ii) complementing and facilitating multi-lateral free trade;

(iii) increasing the market size for producers and service providers;

(iv) abolishing trade barriers, and therefore, reducing the prices paid for by customers;

(v) increasing the quality of goods and services due to the increased competition;

(vi) predictable and stable macroeconomic environment and investment climate in the region;

(vii) increased food security in the region; and

(viii) cost-effective regional infrastructure system.

Mr Speaker, the immediate economic benefits to the nation for hosting the summit include:

(i) income from conference tourism as a result of the money spent by about 4,986 delegates that has gone into the Zambian economy;

(ii) income from conference tourism from meetings to be held during Zambia’s tenure of office as Chair in August 2008;

(iii) upgrading of infrastructure including Mulungushi International Conference Centre; and

(iv) the hosting of the summit put Zambia at the centre of economic and political diplomacy in the region.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Mr D. Mwila: Mr Speaker, from the thirteen Heads of State who are members of SADC, I want to find out from the hon. Minister …

Mr Matongo: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Matongo: Mr Speaker, I need your guidance. Pan Africanism has been on us since the advent of freedom fighting and the independence of Africa. Is the hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs in order to keep quiet and not brief us as to the position of the Third Republic of Zambia, vis-a-vie the United States of Africa or the way forward to achieving this goal? Secondly, we suffered a debacle at our cost in Addis Ababa. We need to know what went wrong. We need to be advised on what went wrong. We are all here as leaders of this country.

Ms Mumbi: Hear, hear!

Mr Matongo: Is he in order to keep quiet? I seek your guidance.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member for Pemba wants to know certain things as he has said. As I recall, it is not customary, even though it might be a very good idea, that when summits are held, whether within or outside Zambia, the minister responsible comes here to make a ministerial statement. It could be a good idea for the House to know. However, in this case, since I have composed portfolio committees, one of which is the Committee on National Security and Foreign Affairs, that committee will be free to interact with the hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs on any matter, including the two issues which have been raised by the hon. Member for Pemba. That committee would then report the details for debate and decision of recommendations on the Floor of this House.

I, therefore, wish to alert the committee if they think this matter is significant to consider what I have just suggested.

The hon. Member for Chipili was raising a supplementary question, may he continue.

Mr D. Mwila: Mr Speaker, I want to find out how man Heads of State, from the thirteen Member States, attended the full SADC summit.

Mr Speaker: I think the question is how many Heads of State attended that particular summit which took place in Zambia.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs (Mr Pande): Mr Speaker, firstly, I would like to correct the hon. Member that there are not thirteen but fourteen Heads of State.

Sir, it was the first time since SADC was established that all Heads of State attended the last summit. That was the first time that all the fourteen attended.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Imenda (Lukulu East): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister was elaborate in his explanation where he was explaining a lot of economic advantages that Zambia is attaining from regional cooperation with neighbouring countries. The question is, why is it that what is good at the regional level is not good at continental level, to the extent that those who are articulating the issue of countries coming up together are being dismissed?


Mr Speaker: Order! I have to rule that the question is inadmissible.




(Debate resumed)

Mr Kambwili (Roan): Mr Speaker, yesterday when I mentioned that the fees at the universities are unaffordable to the ordinary and poor people of our country, I received a lot of heckling from the Government side. However, I wish to inform this House that in today’s Post, the Vice-Chancellor has indicated that he is going to increase the fees at the university because the K74 billion that has been allocated by Government is not enough.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: (Facing and pointing at the Front Bench): So, when we tell you that as Government you must think about the poor …

Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member for Roan will address the Chair. Can you look this way?

Mr Kambwili (Turned to face the Hon. Mr Speaker): Thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, when we tell this Government about their uncaring about the poor people, they think we are joking …

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kaingu: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, it is not always that I rise to raise points of order.


Mr Kaingu: Is the hon. Member for Roan in order to say “this Government” and yet he knows that Government has three arms and this House is part of Government. Is he in order to say that?


Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources wants to be specific with the nomenclature used in matters of statecraft. We have difficulties lecturing in this House, but I can tell him and perhaps, it will be for the benefit of the House as a whole that, there is an entity known as the nation. This is where the motto One Zambia, One Nation comes from.

The nation refers to the contents of the state, meaning the people here and those within the boundaries of the state of Zambia. That is the nation. Now, there is what is known as a state. The state is defined as having recognised boundaries or boundary. In the case, you know the map of Zambia that is the state. Within the state, of course, you have the Government, technically or broadly, the Government is the people of Zambia. If you want to narrow it further, you can then talk of the Executive. I believe the hon. Minister is referring in his point of order to what is known as the Executive, which is one of the three arms of the state. The state is the Executive, Legislature and Judiciary.

Therefore, by way of saying what I have said, I then guided the hon. Minister and many others who may have been in doubt as to what these terminologies we have been using mean, broadly or even technically.

Hon. Member for Roan may continue, please.

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, what I was saying is that this Government must create an enabling environment for the poor people to go to the University of Zambia (UNZA).

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, three or four days ago in this House, the issue of Rail Systems of Zambia (RSZ) arose and the hon. Minister of Communication and Transport indicated to this House that RSZ was doing fine. To the contrary, RSZ has totally failed and I am a bearer of a message from the people of Zambia telling this MMD Government that they do not want RSZ.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: RSZ has failed us, and like we say in our local language, RSZ kuya bebele!

Mr Speaker: Order!


Mr Kambwili: The hon. Minister, - meaning, Mr Speaker, ….


Mr Speaker: Order! May you interpret that phrase.

Mr Kambwili: Meaning, Mr Speaker, if one has failed they must go.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, the RSZ has failed. We do not know who is benefiting from RSZ. The President stated in South Africa that they have failed even the hon. Minister Finance and National Planning stated on the Floor of this House that they have failed. Why should the Minister of Communication and Transport come to this House and tell us that the Government is happy with the operations of RSZ.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, she further went on to say that K14.5 billion has been spent on recapitalising RSZ. I would like to find out, did Government audit RSZ to make sure that, indeed K14.4 billion was spent? This is because when you look at K14.4 billion, it is about K63 billion, and surely, where you are spending K63 billion people must see the results.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: All what the RSZ is doing is to transport copper concentrates from the Republic of Congo into South Africa. This is a serious issue. RSZ must go, regardless of who is benefiting from the company.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, let me come to the state of the Lusaka International Airport.

Mrs Masebo: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, why should we provide for money in the budget to start working on other airports in the country, when the state of the Lusaka International Airport is, indeed, in a very bad state? When I was coming from the United Kingdom (UK) two months ago, I went in the toilet in the VIP lounge. To my surprise, the VIP lounge toilet was leaking.

Mrs Masebo: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: Order! I hear very timid reference to points of order, may I know exactly where it is coming from.


Mr Speaker: Who is raising a point of order?


Hon. Members: There!

Mr Speaker: Where?


Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, I rarely rise on points of order, may be that is the reason I sounded timid. Mr Speaker, I rise on a very serious point order. Is the hon. Member who is speaking quite well in order to be speaking without his shoes on.


Mrs Masebo: Is he in order?

Mr Kambwili wore his shoes.


Mr Speaker: Order! This is, indeed, a very unusual but appropriate point of order.


Mr Speaker: I would have loved to have had those shoes put on the Table of the House for all to see.


Mr Speaker: It is not allowed to speak bare-footed in this House.


Mr Speaker: Therefore, the hon. Member for Roan must wear his shoes before he continues. He may continue after wearing the shoes.

May he continue, please.

Mr Kambwili: I apologise, Mr Speaker. I have now put on my shoes.


Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, I was saying that the state of the Lusaka International Airport leaves a lot to be desired. If the VIP toilet can be leaking, how about the other toilets. When you go to the Lusaka International Airport, sometimes, you find there is no tissue in the toilets. Surely, when a visitor comes to Zambia that is a first place they are going to see and it will give them the impression of what Zambia is. May the hon. Minister responsible for the Lusaka International Airport, ensure that our airport is in a state that is internationally accepted.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: There are even no restaurants to talk about at the Lusaka International Airport, and yet, we are providing money in the budget to go and repair some air stripes in some remote areas of Zambia, before we actually maintain our own international airport.

Hon. Government Member: Which remote area?

Hon. Opposition Members: Solwezi.


Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, the luggage conveyor belt is another eyesore. Can we sort out this issue. Can the hon. Minster sort out this issue.

Mr Speaker, let me now move to the expenditure of the Copperbelt. It is sad to note that now we are expecting more money on the allocations on the Copperbelt going to the three constituencies that are being held by MMD.

Last year, more money for poverty reduction was sent to Mpongwe, Masaiti and Lufwanyama. Equally, this year K120 million has been allocated for water to each of these constituencies while the rest of the districts and constituencies have not been allocated anything. Mr Speaker, should national resources be allocated according to the areas where the MMD Government was voted for? We need to be serious.

Lastly, I want to comment on the status of the Lufwanyama/Luanshya Road. It was done just last year but today it has got potholes all over. What kind of workmanship is that? Is that the way we are going to spend Government resources? I want the hon. Minister in charge to sort out Kafulafuta Road and remove that poster which reads, “Potholes ahead”. That is being irresponsible.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

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

Mr I Banda (Lumezi): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me the chance to add a few words on this year’s Budget. Let me start by commending the New Deal Government for the success that this Government has achieved since it came to power in 2001.

Mr Sichilima: Hear, hear!

Mr I Banda: Mr Speaker, I will start with agriculture. We all know that when the New Deal Government took over in 2001, this country was grounded to its knees in terms of agriculture. We lacked food in this country to the point of begging the yellow maize that the developed countries feed livestock. However, because of the strong decision taken by this Government, under the leadership of Dr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, we are now talking of bumper harvests in this sector …

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr I Banda: … every year. Let us hope that despite the floods this year we shall still have a bumper harvest. Now, others may wonder why the people of Lumezi and other areas ask for relief food even when there are no floods. The mathematics is very simple. For example, in Lumezi, out of the six chiefdoms there, we have more than fifteen co-operatives. Now, when the fertilizer is given through the Fertilizer Support Programme (FSP), it does not cater for all the people, especially this year. Probably only four out of fifteen co-operatives got fertilizer from the FSP. This means that the majority of the people do not benefit and as a result they perpetually have poor harvests which cannot sustain them for the whole year and they would have nothing to sell. The few that get fertilizer have plenty for their families and for sale.

Mr Speaker, because of this problem in the administering of the FSP, the people of Lumezi and their hon. Member are wholesomely asking for the Government to review the Fertilizer Support Programme. What the people of Lumezi have suggested is that the Government, through the Food Reserve Agency (FRA), should subsidise all fertilizers and there should be shops ready to sell the fertilizers to peasant farmers throughout the year. This is the only sure way of reducing the prices and how the Zambian economy can trickle down to the poor people in the villages.

Mr Speaker, the people of Lumezi and those in all the rural parts of Zambia depend on agriculture for their livelihood. I, therefore, ask for the introduction of open shops for subsidized fertilizer throughout the country so that even if one wants one or two bags of fertilizer, he or she can be able to buy it freely without the difficult conditions that are laid out by co-operatives.

Mr Speaker, let me now talk about education. In this sector, the New Deal Government has made a big milestone. This is in terms of teachers’ recruitment. Last year, about 1,600 teachers were recruited and this year we have been promised that about 5,000 teachers will be recruited. The Government started constructing thirty-one high schools throughout the country.

Mr Sichilima: Hear, hear!

Mr I Banda: Additionally, the third public university is going to open up in Mulungushi, Kabwe. All these are signs of development and the good leadership of Dr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sichilima: Bwekeshapo!

Mr I Banda: Mr Speaker, the people of Lumezi are also very thankful for giving them a beautiful modern high school which was built by our good friends the Chinese.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr I Banda: Apart from that, the Mpingozi Basic School that was abandoned by Tomorrow Investments Limited a long time ago has also been completed by a Chinese contractor and we are going to open it any time.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr I Banda: Mr Speaker, because of the vastness of my constituency, which has about six chiefdoms, we still have many schools that need …

Mr Kambwili: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, I stand on a very serious point of order. Is the hon. Member who is debating and who is neither an hon. Cabinet or Deputy Minister in order to be reading instead of debating. I need your serious ruling.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order! With regard to the point of order which has been raised by the hon. Member for Roan, I have been listening attentively as well as watching the hon. Member for Lumezi debating. Yes, I have seen that he has a notebook like each one of you has and he has copious notes in there from which he was reading and referring …


Mr Speaker: As such, he is within the bounds of the debating rules of the House.

He may continue.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr I Banda: Mr Speaker, because of the vastness of my constituency, which has about six chiefdoms, we still have many schools that are of sub-standard structures. These schools need the support of this able bodied Government.

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah! Able bodied?

Mr I Banda: Mr Speaker, these schools are Mpheluke, Chanyalubwe, Kachunga, Kapaipi, Mutimbasonjo, Chatemwa and Kapongoro. At these schools, I and the communities have already molded bricks. At each of these schools we have about 100,000 bricks already molded. What we need is for the Government to help us with funds so that we can construct them.

Hon. Opposition Members: CDF!

Mr I Banda: Mr Speaker, in the health sector, the Government has made some achievements. In the first place, the Government declared all the rural fifty-four districts as free medical zones and recruited 1,100 frontline medical personnel. We, the people in rural areas and particularly the people of Lumezi Constituency, are very thankful for that gesture by the Government.

The people of Lumezi would like to thank the Government for the X-Ray and Theatre Blocks that were well completed last year at Lumezi Mission General Health Centre. The Government has also funded for the extension of this same project so that it can start functioning at any time.

Mr Speaker, I said at the beginning that Lumezi constituency is big, most of the people there do not have access to medical facilities. People travel long distances of more than 50 kilometres, for instance, the people of Chanyalubwe, Jasoyo and Nkanyu areas. In these three areas people have already done their homework, for instance, the preparation of building health centres. In each of these areas, more than 100,000 bricks have already been made.

Mr Speaker, through you, I would like to ask the hon. Minister of Health to make sure that something trickles down to Lumezi so that we are able to start constructing these health facilities.

Hon. Member: Hear, hear!


Mr I Banda: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister indicated in his speech that essential drugs and medical supplies were scaled up in 2007 by 83.5 per cent deliveries on time. However, I would still ask the ministry to take keen interest in that direction because the stocks of drugs in rural clinics need much to be desired as it is one of the mapping points where rural people can know and be sure that they have a share in the national cake. The ministry should also take a keen interest in the sources of drugs because of the mushrooming private drug shops in our country so that rural health centres do not become endless pits of drugs from these private shops.

Mr Speaker, on local government, I want to talk on the issue of the Constituency Development Fund (CDF).  Let me thank the Minister of Local Government and Housing for increasing the CDF in 2007 from K60 million to K200 million and then from K200 million this year to K400 million.

Mr Speaker, the people of Lumezi have appreciated the CDF money better than the money coming through ministries which is not seen despite the heavy under development that is in rural areas. That is why the people of Lumezi are asking the hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing to increase the CDF to K1 billion or more.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr I. Banda: With the CDF money, in Lumezi we have started putting up standard structures in schools to replace the mad and pole buildings that are there. Therefore, hon. Minister, increase the CDF to K1 billion.

On road construction, a lot has been achieved by the Government in this sector, but the people of Eastern Province would appreciate if the Government could construct roads apart from the Great East Road from Nyimba to Mwami Border, Lundazi Road from Chipata to Lundazi/Chipata Road and Chipata/Mfuwe Road and then Chadiza/Chipata Road and then the abandoned construction of the Chama/Matumbo Bridge. If this is not done then very little will be appreciated. I, therefore, ask the New Deal Government to look into these problems so that the people of Eastern Province can also receive the trickle down effect of the good economy initiated by the New Deal Government.

Mr Speaker, coming to this year’s Budget, I am asking the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning that during the implementation of the Budget, people who will be found wanting should be taken to court. The Government is supposed to release money in time so that projects take off and finish in time so that at the end of the year, we are able to account on how much money has been left and how many projects have taken off. Projects that have been realised in that same year should be accounted for and should be listed so that we know the balance for the next year. The technocrats that are found wanting in this venture of implementing the Budget should be taken to book because what we want is this Government to still continue ruling even after 2011.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr I. Banda: Mr Speaker, those technocrats out there found pilfering public funds meant for development so that at the end of the five year term, the people of Zambia can throw us out of Government. Sir, as a Government in power, let us make sure that they are kicked out of employment and get arrested because we do not want to be out of Government as a ruling party.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr I. Banda: Lastly, let us all work together as leaders of this nation across party boundaries in order to implement this Budget so that it brings development to all of us since we all need development in our areas.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Mumbi (Munali): Mr Speaker, I would first like to, through you, wish our hon. Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives (Mr Kapita) a quick recovery.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, I am grateful that you have given me this opportunity today to contribute to this debate on the motion.

Mr Speaker, I will not speak much as I only have three issues which I would like to talk about.

Firstly, I will start with health. On health as I requested when the hon. Minister of Health was giving the ministerial statement concerning the injectable contraceptive drug which our women and even I have been exposed to - I meant business.

It is unfortunate in this country that when it does not affect you directly, you do not take it upon yourself to help others. This injectable drug is going to cause or has already caused havoc and anxiety amongst many women. Why do I say so? Before we used to use traditional contraceptives, and as it is in this country, we believe that the Western Culture is the best.

Hon. Member: Why did you stop using traditional contraceptives?

Ms Mumbi: We were forced and introduced to these western drugs which they are not even sure of. I know that there are a lot of women whose husbands did not allow them to have that type of contraceptive but they did it on their own because they thought it was safe.

At the same time, we have many faithful husbands in this country and when we are suspecting this drug to have HIV/AIDS what is going to happening is that when we both get infected since we are one as God told us when we got married and if he has been faithful to me, he is going to suspect me and yet, innocently, I have been injected by this caring Government through the USAID.


Ms M. Phiri: Mr Speaker, I am repeating what I said the day before yesterday that women are patiently waiting to see our Ambassador who is a woman to get that injection to prove to these women who are desperate about this HIV/AIDS which is going to hammer many of us who are very innocent and faithful to our husbands. If she can prove herself to us by being injected, at least, it is going to give us a lot of confidence since the drug is originating from the United States of America …

Mr Speaker: Order! It is the tradition of this House not to speak in disparaging terms about foreign envoys who represent their countries to Zambia and vice-versa. I would guide the hon. Member not to make such references in this House. You may continue.

Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, again on health, we all know that we have a very big problem at present with electricity. As I said, being a woman and a mother I am concerned about women. At one time, when there was no electricity, I visited one of my local clinics- Kalingalinga because that is where I go. I did not find electricity at that clinic but what I found was first time mothers, who are called prime gravitas being sutured after delivery under candle light.

Hon. Member: Shame!

Ms Mumbi:  Is that normal and can we call ourselves a caring Government? It is a risk to both the nurse who is delivering that woman and to the woman herself because the nurse who is suturing is not able to see properly. That is a risk.

Mr Speaker, I will be very happy when the Budget is passed through this House, if the hon. Minister of Health will consider purchasing generators for all our clinics in this country.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, let me now move to Education. I am very sad to see the amounts allocated to education in this year’s budget. It is sad to see that some of these schools have been given to the same constituencies which were given last time. The reason being given for this is that some other constituencies do not have land to build new schools.

Mr Speaker, I beg to differ. I can give an example of my constituency, Munali where we have the University of Zambia with a big piece of land which they are prepared to lease to us. When you look at the plan of the University land, there is provision for a school and all what the university authority wants is somebody to go to them and be given land. Why can our so called caring Government not go to the university and negotiate for that land?


Ms Mumbi: If you look at the budget allocation for the University of Zambia, it is the same as that for last year. Last year the allocation was K74.9 billion and it is still the same this year.

Mr Speaker, when I look at these figures, I start to wonder whether this caring Government is really serious. That is why some hon. Members even say we congratulate you. Well-done for letting our children stop school in the middle, some of them in their third year. Well-done and congratulations if you think you are doing the best.

Mr Speaker, as I speak now, there are over 5,000 retirees at the University of Zambia. Are they going to use this money to pay them? We even have some hon. Members in this House who have sued the University for not being paid after they moved out of that University.

Professor Lungwangwa: On a point of Order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, …


Mr Speaker: Order!

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Member who is debating with a very high level of confidence which is rooted in unsubstantiated facts …


Professor Lungwangwa: … in order to misinform this House and the nation as a whole …

Hon. Member: Hear, hear!

Professor Lungwangwa: … that as far as retirees at the University of Zambia are concerned they will be paid from that K74.9 billion when provision has been made in the Budget for the retirees of the University of Zambia, which figure the hon. Member is deliberately ignoring. Is she in order to display a high level of misinformation to the wider public? I need your serious ruling.


Mr Speaker: The hon. Minister of Education is calling, as it were, on the hon. Member for Munali to speak from facts. It is up to her to look up the estimates book to see where else the money is going to come for paying the University of Zambia retirees.

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours.

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member for Munali who was contributing to the debate will continue but should bear in mind the contents of the point of order that was raised by the hon. Minister of Education.

Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, I would like to emphasise what I said before the point of order was raised and before business was suspended. I put it in question form and said “Is the K74.9 billion the same money they are going to pay the people who have been retired at the University of Zambia?”

Mr Speaker, when I get such points of order, I tend to wonder. That is why for me, even when some hon. Members stand and try to tell us that those who have never been to that university should go to any university since there are so many universities, I do not take interest because they do not inspire me. I mean it, they do not inspire me.

Mr Speaker, that university was built by Dr Kenneth Kaunda …

Mrs Musokotwane: Hear! Hear

Ms Mumbi: … and his Government. How much education did they have and yet they looked after that University very well. When some hon. Members even stand up and start insulting the students who are there and threatening them with closures, you tend to wonder.

 In my language we say, “Kuchibolya takubula mukaya” simply meaning that since I grew up in Kamuchanga, Mufulira, people there know me because they were seeing me on the streets of Kamuchanga playing netball and Chidunu but when I come to this House and pretend because I am now an hon. Member and forget where I am coming from, people will still look at me and start wondering “is this the girl who was brought up in Kamuchanga? But now that she is an hon. Member she has forgotten that even our children will one day go to that Parliament because it is God’s destiny?” You can never frustrate God’s will no matter how much you say.

Mr Speaker, when you look at the money which has been allocated to the Copperbelt University, last year it was K27,900 billion and it is the same this year. There is a difference in the allocation to the new University which they are calling Mulungushi University.

Mr Speaker, when I look at these figures, I wonder what is going to happen to our education system. This gives me an impression that you want to destroy what is already in place. Last year, Mulungushi University was allocated K4 billion. It is the only university which has received an increased funding. Why? Is it because it is the initiative of the New Deal Government? Are you forgetting about these other universities? Until we learn to appreciate what has been left by others, we will not go anywhere.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Mumbi: As I am speaking now, there is looming strike at the University of Zambia. We will stand up and say, ‘Let us close the university until when money is enough.’ Where did you come from yourselves? Probably you started school when you were fifteen years old …

Mr Speaker: Order!

Ms Mumbi: … but because you had people who cared …

Mr Speaker: Order!

Ms Mumbi: Thank you!

Mr Speaker: Certainly, that does not apply to the Chair …


Mr Speaker: … you may continue, but address the Chair.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hammer!

Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, I thank you for your guidance.

Sir, when I look at our education sector, I tend to wonder how it would be like in the long run. I will give an example of another college in Lusaka which is called Zambia Air Services Training Institute (ZASTI). When this college was built, it used to train a lot of students in Africa. That is why the Government, under Dr Kaunda’s leadership, was able to train pilots, engineers …

Hon. Opposition Members: hear, hear!

Ms Mumbi: … and people who are working as air traffic controllers. These are very qualified such that up to day they are able to perform to the best of their ability. How long has Kaunda been out of Government? However, we can still see the legacy that he left.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Mumbi: No matter how much people speak against him, they will never tarnish his image because he had a political will.

Mr Speaker, today, when you go to this college, you would feel like crying because of what this Government of graduates, who do not appreciate education, has done. Sir, three students are made to share a room. Those rooms where meant to accommodate a single student. Students are now even renting.


Ms Mumbi: There are rooms for rent at that college. If anybody is challenging me, I am ready to take them there tomorrow because it is happening. I spoke about the radar in this House and you murmured, but I am glad you have worked on it.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, it is true that rooms at that college are being rented out to people who are not students inconveniencing our children. Do you want to come to Kalingalinga Basic and turn it into another college because it is near the City Airport? For me, I look at quality not quantity.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Mumbi: Let us invest enough money in our education sector.

Mr Kambwili: Kaunda production!

Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, when you look at the Ministry of Local Government and Housing, you will see that it is working. The reason I praise women is because they are doing well. Men disappointed us a lot. When they are answering questions, they even ask us to go to school …


Ms Mumbi: … to learn. Why, when they are not learned themselves. If they were learned, they could have been doing things in a right way.

Mr Speaker, it was in this House where a ministerial statement was issued authorising our councils like the Lusaka City Council …

Hon. Member: Drink water!

Ms Mumbi: … as a road authority in 2006. When we ask questions in connection with our local authority in this House, it is because we are getting conflicting statements from people who are supposed to take care of our money.

Mr D. Mwila: Hear, hear!

Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, we submitted, as Lusaka City Council …

Major Chizhyuka: Drink water!

Ms Mumbi drunk some water.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Mumbi: … the roads which we wanted to be worked on to the Road Development Agency (RDA). What did they do? They removed the roads they thought were useless according to them and put what they thought was prudent and yet we were told here, that the authority which was given to the Lusaka City Council starts with Lusaka City Council and ends with Lusaka City Council.

Mr Speaker, what is happening is that they are writing everything including procurement and then call Lusaka City Council to just go and supervise their work. As if that is not enough, some of these directors at RDA have spare vehicles to drive their dogs to the veterinary clinics and yet our poor officers at the Lusaka City Council have to walk to go and supervise these roads. I thought that since authority was given to the Lusaka City Council, they were supposed to give them some vehicles so that they can supervise the work properly, but it is not happening. That is why we come here and ask the local authorities because we are not being given positive answers but being misled. I am pleading that this should come to an end because when we find wrong things we are ready to expose them.

Mr Speaker, with these few words I would like to thank you.

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

The Minister of Central Province (Mr A. Banda): Mr Speaker, I thank you for allowing me to contribute to the debate on the Motion on the 2008 Budget. I will be very brief in my debate because I have always said on this Floor of the House that I am a man of few words, but action oriented.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr A. Banda: Indeed, I am compelled to join others in saluting the hon. Minister for his rousing speech in delivering this year’s Budget Address which was themed, ‘Unlocking Resources for Economic Empowerment and Wealth Creation.’ This theme could not come at a better time than now when our people are yearning for tangible policy measures to equitably distribute the benefits of our sustained economic gains to the majority of the Zambian population. Its significance lies in its close linkage with the overall goal of the Fifth National Development Plan whose theme is, ‘Wealth and Job Creation through Citizenry Participation.’

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr A. Banda: I will now highlight some of the cardinal areas articulated in the Budget Address. Mr Speaker, I wish to reiterate the core issue imperative to this budget being the challenge to transform the positive developments in the macroeconomic environment into improved living standards and the creation of more jobs. The poverty levels still remain high particularly in the rural areas with poverty levels of 78 per cent as reported by the 2006 Living Conditions Monitoring Survey.

Mr Speaker, this affects most of our Zambian population which is largely rural based. It is envisaged that structural improvements with the execution of the budget as well as strengthening monitoring systems will help streamline the delivery mechanism for the much desired socio-economic infrastructure and services in these areas.

Mr Speaker, considerable focus on this matter will stimulate the exploitation of the abundant rural resources which will ultimately enable full participation of the marginalised population in the various economic activities.

Sir, stimulating agriculture production is undoubtedly an effective strategy to engage our people in economic activity and ensure rural development. We, in Central Province, therefore, welcome the sustained support rendered to small scale farmers through the Fertiliser Support Programme allocation of K185 billion.

Sir, in Central Province, this farming season, the number of small scale farmers who benefited from the Fertiliser Support Programme was 20,685. This was a 39 per cent reduction from a pick of 33,950 in 2006 and 2007 agricultural season. The reduction was due to the decrease in the allocation of inputs to the province from 13,585 metric tonnes to 8,275 metric tonnes in 2006 to 2007 and 2007 to 2008 seasons, respectively.

Mr Speaker, along with the Fertiliser Support Programme intervention therefore, there is the need to nurture the expansion of the scale of production among the small scale farmers having potential to grow. May I submit that measures be explored to channel the provision of concessionary credit and other extension services to empower the emerging commercial farmers on a sustainable basis. Mr Speaker, this could help us even facilitate for the systematic graduation of small scale farmers from subsistence level to commercial production scales and ultimately, improve the targeting of beneficiaries of the Fertiliser Support Programme.

Mr Speaker, further, to support small farm mechanisation, the cattle restocking intervention will require enhancing in the provinces. With respect to Central Province, 252 heifers were procured and distributed to farmers in the six districts during the year 2007.

Sir, supporting integrated farm block development such as the Nansanga Farm Block in Serenje District and Serenje Central in particular, holds the potential to bolster the economies of the affected districts and the country as a whole. Work on infrastructure such as dams and bridges is underway. It is anticipated that considerable progress on this project will be made this year in order to speedily attain the desired impacts in the foreseeable future.

Mr Speaker, on energy, facilitating the development of growth centres in the rural areas will require a ready access to power supply. It is in this vein that we eagerly await the speedy implementation of the Rural Electrification Master Plan to increase accessibility. At the same time, upgrading the generation capacity of Lunsenfwa Hydro-Electricity Scheme will assist to improve power availability in the province.

Sir, I now come to road infrastructure, given the prevailing countrywide increased rainfall levels and the accompanying damage to the road network, it is prudent that K1,110.7 billion, this is to say that  51.4 per cent of expenditure on economic affairs in this year’s Budget should be directed towards transport infrastructure mainly road contraction, rehabilitation of road infrastructure and maintenance.

Mr Speaker, last year, Central Province expended an amount of K800 million on undertaking emergency works on the damaged culverts in Serenje District and Kakoma Bridge in Kapiri Mposhi. We expect that more resources will be required this year to address the damage to the infrastructure left in the work of recent floods.

Sir, on education, the recruitment of adequate numbers of the teaching staff as well as construction of classrooms and teachers houses is a cardinal area of attention. It is gratifying that the Budget has made provision for the recruitment of 5,000 teachers. In Central Province, 972 teachers were recruited in 2007. An addition of 1,505 more teachers would assist to reduce the pupil teacher ratio from the current 57:1 to the standard ratio of 40:1.

Mr Speaker, further, efforts are being made in the area of infrastructure development. Each of the five rural districts in the province has one or two community school infrastructure upgraded from the usual mud and pole structures to the standard 1 x 3 classroom blocks at the total cost of K1.5 billion.

In Serenje District, Mukando High School in Chitambo Constituency is under construction with funding from the Ministry of Education. Similarly, construction work is under way at Kafushi and Moomba High Schools in Chibombo District.

Mr Speaker, we anticipate that additional schools will be constructed this year from the Budget provision of K350 billion set aside for the construction of 1,500 classrooms at basic school level and thirty-one high schools nation wide. This is bound to remarkably increase enrolment levels of our school going children.

Sir, on health, the supply of adequate health personnel has remained a critical issue in the provision of quality health services particularly in the rural health facilities. It is similarly gratifying that K24.7 billion has been provided for the recruitment of 1,700 health personnel. In terms of infrastructure development within Central Province, two district hospitals are under construction in Mumbwa and Kapiri Districts. Additionally, the province undertook construction and rehabilitation of health facilities in all six districts at a cost of K1 billion. It is envisaged that this intervention will be expanded to other areas of need within the districts during the year 2008.

Mr Speaker, in conclusion, as I said, I would be brief, I have highlighted the need to scale up efforts meant to economically empower our rural small scale farmers and address the rural urban disparity in poverty levels. On overall, the 2008 budgetary policy and allocations to the social sector indicate the focus of Government to cater for the basic needs of our population and increase their capacity as individuals and groups to participate fully in various economic activities, and ultimately, contribute to the reduction of poverty levels, especially, in the rural towns and provinces.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr A. Banda: Mr Speaker, as hon. Members of this august House, we are duty bound to follow through these development interventions and ensure their speedy and effective implementation.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kakoma (Zambezi West): Mr Speaker, I thank you for allowing me to contribute to the debate on the Budget 2008 motion. I want to point out from the outset that after going through the 2008 Budget, I find it to be defective.

Mr Speaker, the Budget is so mechanical that it is framed rigidly within the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and no new ideas that were introduced by various stakeholders have been incorporated in the Budget, including the brilliant ideas that were announced regarding the new tax regime for the mining sector.

Mr Speaker, just to demonstrate this point, in the 2007 Budget, the Ministry of Mines and Minerals Development made a provision of mineral royalty tax at K77 billion for the year, given the rate of 0.6 per cent of the total value of copper exports. In this year’s Budget, when the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning proposed to increase to 3 per cent, the total value of mineral royalty has dropped to K72 billion. This does not make any mathematical sense that at a lower rate of 0.6 per cent we were getting more mineral royalty than at a higher rate of 3 per cent. It does not make sense. It simply means that the pronouncements in the 2008 Budget were not related and adjusted accordingly, to take into account the new mining sector regime. They are basically the same figures that were approached and included in the Budget arising from the MTEF.

Mr Speaker, this also goes for the windfall tax that was announcement by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning and the President himself. If you look at a figure of US$415 million that we cannot really expect to get from windfall tax and multiply by an average exchange rate of K3,700 per dollar, you will find that we are getting nearly half of the amount that has been budgeted in this year’s Budget, but which, has not been included as part of the revenue for this country.

Mr Speaker, I tried to find out from the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning why he made such a technical error. In his arguments, he appears to suggest that there is no need to budget for windfall tax because it is a windfall tax.

Mr Speaker, it is a well known rule in Zambia that all the income and expenditure must be accounted for and must be brought to Parliament. For the hon. Minister to expect to get windfall tax in excess of US$400 million, and not disclose that in the Zambian Budget for approval by this Parliament, he is trying to windhook the Zambian people. For the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to propose that the huge amount should be banked without the knowledge and approval of Parliament, he is trying to create another secret account, like the Zamtrop. We all know what happened to Zamtrop because things were not done transparently and there was no accountability, it ended up creating problems for this country.

Mr Speaker, all the money, including windfall tax must be disclosed in the Budget and brought to Parliament for approval. When this Parliament imposes a tax or makes a decision like the way we made a decision in amending the Mines and Minerals Amendment Act so that we allow this Government to go and negotiate the development agreements with the mining companies, we want to be informed as Parliament on what happened to those negotiations.

In the first place, did the negotiations take place, or they did not? If they took place, what were the results of those negotiations? How much money did we realise from the new taxes as a result of negotiations for the new development agreements? All of that is not known to this Parliament. What has happened is that the hon. Minister, has quietly again, come to announce new tax measures before telling this House what happened to the mandate that we gave this Government to go and negotiate with the new mine owners on the new tax regime.

Mr Speaker, still on the mining developments, many people are hopeful that with the new mines being opened, there is hope for them to achieve their development dreams. There is a lot hope, especially in areas where these new mines are being established. Mr Speaker, for the people of North-Western Province, for instance, hopes are being dashed by the rigid stance of this Government on the benefits that should trickle down to the local people.

For example, Kansanshi Mining Plc applied for a rebate from this Government so that the money, if granted, that rebate would be used for the development of roads in North-Western Province. That was not granted by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, for the same arguments that all that money belongs to the whole country. Yes, it does, but we are not saying that all that money should go to the development of one area or region. We are simply asking that a percentage of that amount be ploughed back in the local community so that the local people benefit from the mining activities that are happening in their areas.

Mr Speaker, we have seen that in other areas where that was not done, like on the Copperbelt, the people, after fifty years of mining, have been left poorer like Hon. Mulongoti’s village, which does not have good roads, hospitals and schools but the copper is gone and have left him with only holes. We do not want the same thing to happen to North-Western Province. We value our wealth and our land. We do not want potholes and holes that will be difficult to fill. We want that when this money is gone to Europe, it must leave something tangible for the local people.

Mr Speaker, we have always proposed brilliant ideas about how we are going to develop this country but Government is always refusing to listen to brilliant ideas. In the past we had proposed about taxing the mines and there was resistance. I also recall that in the past we have complained and put suggestions to this Government that it is wrong and irresponsible for the Government to allow exporters in Zambia, particularly in the mining sector, to export and externalise sales from this country. There is nowhere in the world do you find a government allowing companies externalising sales. What is allowed as an international standard is for a government to allow the externalisation of dividends because that is what is due to investors.

In this country we are poorer because all the income from the sales revenue from the copper mining industry is being externalised and banked in London in Europe and other western capitals but nothing is coming back to Zambia. That is why, even when you are determining the country’s exchange rate, it is not reflecting the true value because not all the foreign exchange is being generated and coming into Zambia.

Mr Speaker, I recall that in the past we have argued that during the UNIP regime, all the income from Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines (ZCCM) used to be banked at the Bank of Zambia before it was utilised for other purposes. That helped to stabilise the exchange rate and account for all the foreign exchange revenue for this country.

Sir, the situation obtaining now where Konkola, Mopani and other big mining companies are selling the copper at the London Stock Exchange and banking all the money in international banks and only releasing what is required for wages in Zambia is not helping this country. That is why you find that there are no linkages between the mining sector and other sectors in the economy.

Mr Mwiimbu: Hear, hear!

Mr Kakoma: It is because all that money, which is supposed to help in developing this country, is being utilised outside the country.

Major Chizhyuka: Hear, hear!

Mr Kakoma: Sir, let me move to another subject that is close to my heart and that is, the disasters in this country, in particular, the floods situation.

Mr Speaker, I stand here as a very disappointed person with this Government because of its lack of seriousness in tackling disasters in this country.

Sir, you will recall and it is common knowledge that the people of Zambezi West for example, were affected by floods many years ago even last year and bridges were washed away and others were submerged. Mr Speaker, because the bridges were wooden, the plunks got rotten. Some of them because they are wooden bridges were burnt by fires. Practically, the whole constituency is inaccessible. However, what this Government did was to send some people in helicopters to go and assess the damage and they spent more money in compiling reports on damaged infrastructures and to date, none of those bridges have been repaired. Now, there is a new flood and this Government is failing to transport even relief food.

For your information, Mr Speaker, this Government after representations from the Member of Parliament, other stakeholders and chiefs, agreed to send relief food to Zambezi West in February last year, at the great cost of tax payers in Zambia. I wish to inform you that one year down the line that relief food which was transported from Lusaka and other places in Zambia is still laying at warehouses at Zambezi Boma …


Mr Kakoma: … and it is rotting.

Hon. Opposition Member: Shame!

Mr Kakoma: Meanwhile, they are saying, they are responding to emergencies. Can you imagine, Mr Speaker, that the people who were afflicted by these floods, whose fields were damaged and lost their food requirements, have been looking at piles of relief maize piled at the Boma and rotting, when  the food is meant for them. It is a big mockery that hungry people must be shown food in their face but meanwhile they cannot be given that food.

Sir, recently, because of failure to deliver goods and services on time, we attempted in December last year, just a month ago, to transport that food using a rotten tractor.


Mr Kakoma: The first trip we attempted to make …

Mr Mulongoti: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mulongoti: Mr Speaker, I rise on a very serious point of order. Is the hon. Member of Parliament for Zambezi West in order to come and bemoan here over his failure to help his people to access that food? If his people are suffering and he is seeing food lying at the Boma, but he waits to come to this House, is a serious mark of irresponsibility. I need your serious ruling, Sir.


Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member for Zambezi West will attend to that point of order from the hon. Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services.

Mr Kakoma: Mr Speaker, this Government sent 100 metric tonnes relief food to Zambezi and only provided transportation of the relief food up to the Boma. They never made any provision of transport money to transport that food from the Boma to the other areas where relief food was needed.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hadjika!

Mr Kakoma: I am surprised and shocked that the hon. Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services is challenging me to have produced my personal money to transport the relief food to the affected areas and yet it is a Government responsibility.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hear, hear! He is being irresponsible!

Mr Kakoma: Sir, as we speak now, some of the effects of the floods last year were that some schools had their roofs blown off and damaged. One of the schools, Kawelele Basic School which had its infrastructure damaged by the rains was given tents by the Disaster Management Unit (DMU) and up to now, the children are still learning under those tents. Mr Speaker, we have serious government property including books getting soaked under these very poor and old tents, and yet this Government is claiming that it is listening and working.

Mr Speaker, I agree, they are a listening Government, but they have been listening for sixteen years but they do not act. Meanwhile, they want to be praised and when you point out their shortcomings, they think that you are a bad Member of Parliament, you are irresponsible and you just want to raise points of order…


Mr Kakoma:… when I am helping them with free information about their failure to deliver.


Mr Kakoma: Free information which will help them to act if they were a responsible Government.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hanjika.

Mr Kakoma: Mr Speaker, as I speak now, even the palace of the Senior Chief Ndungu has been affected by the floods this year. Part of the roof was blown off by the wind. This Government which always prophesies to care for chiefs and always remembers chiefs especially during election years, is now ignoring the chiefs because it is not an election year.

Mr Speaker, the Senior Chief Ndungu rang me just this week to find out whether there is money for Zambezi Bridge in this year’s budget because during elections in 2006, this Government wrote to him to organise his people to vote for the President of MMD, and that, once elected he is going to do this bridge. The people of Zambezi West despite voting for the Opposition Member of Parliament, they voted for the MMD President in fulfilment of that deal.


Mr Kakoma: Mr Speaker, they have opted to remove the budget line for Zambezi Bridge in this year’s budget. Tell me what I should tell the chief. I have told him that I will not give him the answer until I ask the Government why it has removed the money for Zambezi Bridge from this year’s budget. This Government is full of  - I would have said fake promises, ...


Mr Kakoma: …but they must fulfil what they promised. Imagine, they can even tell lies to a chief, what should we do …

Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member’s time has expired!

Laughter {mospagebreak}

The Deputy Minister of Defence (Mr Akakandelwa): Mr Speaker, I thank you for allowing me to contribute to this very important debate. This speech has been described in the affirmative and, therefore, I will not belabour on the good things that have been said about this speech. I endorse all the good things that have been said about the speech and adopt them as mine. A challenge, however, admittedly is in the implementation of the good things that have been said.

Mr Speaker, this nation has delivered. To appreciate, what this country or this Government has done, one only needs to look around the borders of Zambia to see that this Government is delivering and will continue to deliver. The empirical evidence, as some Member wanted to suggest - empirical, meaning, scientific evidence of the performance of this economy and this Government is there for everybody to see.

Mr Speaker, it is a fact that the macro-economic stability is there and we have all seen and we can see and we must acknowledge that there has been growth in real Gross Domestic Product (GDP). We must acknowledge that there has been reduction in inflation, we all know that. We must acknowledge that the exchange rate has stabilised. This is why your kwacha today is worth so many dollars and you can save and borrow from any bank. If you want you can even have your salary in dollars and no one will stop you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, there has been declining interest rates. I was a banker in the year 1995 and 2000, the interest rates were going up to 200 per cent and you all know that. Now, there are at levels of less than 30 per cent coming to 20 per cent. You must acknowledge.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Our financial system is stable and you know that, if you did not know or if you do not know, I can help.

Hon. Opposition Member: Help the Chair mudala.

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, there is a substantial build up in foreign exchange reserves and this is why again your Kwacha is strong.  Mr Speaker, because of all these goods things …

Mr Mukanga: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, I rise on a serious point of order. Is the hon. Deputy Minister of North-Western Province in order to be unparliamentary dressed in a suit without a lapel? I need your serious ruling, Mr Speaker.

Mr Akakandelwa started to straighten his  collar.


Mr Speaker: Order! Well, the hon. Member for Kantanshi has challenged the mode of dress by the hon. Deputy Minister of North-Western Province that he is improperly dressed. One cannot see the tie in or around his neck. There was once a point of order that was raised here and we reminded the House to wear something that is unquestionably acceptable in the House, meaning, if you are talking of coat and tie of a suit, all should be visible. A coat must be visible; trousers must be visible …


Mr Speaker: … the tie, the shirt and the shoes must all be visible.


Mr Speaker: So, all these must be in no doubt remain visible and so the hon. Deputy Minister is reminded that the House wants him to dress explicitly so long we can see that he is dressed in the code that everybody will not express doubt over. Now, looking at that machine ahead of me, it might be not worth to send him home, may be for the time being the House may reprieve him so that he can conclude the day successfully.


Mr Speaker: The hon. Deputy Minister may continue, please.

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, before the point of order was raised, I was cataloguing the achievements that this Government has recorded and because of all these put together, we are saying that jobs and wealth have been created.

Mr Speaker, I want to remind this House that this country is just recovering from an economic coma. Expecting a patient who is recovering from a coma to spring up and start running is going against the laws of nature. What is expected of a patient that is recovering from a serious illness is for body movements to be seen such as the eyes opening, talking, sitting, walking and then running. The moral of my illustration is that the recovery is there but it will take time. This must be appreciated.

Mr Speaker, we have skeptics and pessimists who I have heard say that this Government is not performing badly. In fact, what they are trying to say is that this Government is doing a good job. They are restrained in praising this Government because of reprisals.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Yes, this is evident and if I am permitted, I can cite names but I will restrict myself to the debate and not go into talking about individuals. However, I will comment on the lack of appreciation, the negative debates or the failure to appreciate the economic successes of this country. I will refer to a debate some time last week on the Floor of this House by the hon. Member for Bweengwa (Mr Hamududu) whom I cannot see in the House. The debate was predominantly negative although I know that the hon. Member appreciates economics but for him to fail to recognise empirical evidence is suspect.

Mr Speaker, this Government has other things to show to indicate the fact that it is performing. Even the Budget that we are talking about today, there is a growth from K12 trillion last year to K13 trillion this year. The fact that the foreign component of the Budget is being trimmed is a success. Some other indicators of a performing economy such as ours …

Major Chizhyuka: On a point of order, Sir.


Mr Speaker: Order! A point of order is raised but this will be the last.

Major Chizhyuka: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Deputy Minister who is also my very good traditional cousin, in order to suggest that the hon. Member for Bweengwa (Mr Hamududu) who understand economics does not appreciate empirical data when in his Bweengwa Constituency, from Monze to Namwala, there is no high school. How does he expect Hon. Hamududu to appreciate empirical data in the absence of the same empirical data?

Mr Mwiimbu laughed.

Major Chizhyuka: I beg your serious ruling on that matter.

Mr Speaker: My Serious ruling on the point of order by the hon. Member for Namwala is that the hon. Deputy Minister of Defence who is on the Floor will address that point of order.

May he continue.

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, we have insisted in this House, especially the hon. Members on your Left, that there must be tangible or visible signs of the growth of the economy. They cite Kapenta on people’s tables and I agree with them but they must also not close their eyes to evidence such as the following. In the compounds where our people stay …

Mr Mwiimbu: Kanyama!

Mr Akakandelwa: Kanyama yes.  We have shopping malls in Manda Hill …


Mr Akakandelwa: … Crossroads and Arcades. What this means is that instead of travelling to town, our people save on transport. The money saved goes towards buying Kapenta …

Mr Mwiimbu: In Kanyama?

Mr Akakandelwa: …yes, in Kanyama. I have lived in Lusaka and I have seen Kanyama grow from just a cluster of houses to its current status, a near metropolitan area. That points to growth. In Kanyama, Kabwata, Chunga and Libala there are police stations and the cars that park at these police stations are not from Woodlands but from these same compounds. Five years ago, these cars were not there. If that is not a sign of wealth creation then I do not know what else is.

Mr Sichilima: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, I would like the hon. Members on your Left to know, like I do, that even the shortage of cement that they seem to be lamenting is not because there is no production but because the demand is high.

Mr Speaker, another indicator is the competition in the business houses. Banks are today offering prizes of up to K50 million if you open an account. This is a reality. Celtel Zambia Limited has given out houses. All these business incentives are indicators of a growing economy. You must listen (pointing at hon. UPND Members). Trips to Dubai are not won by people from Kabulonga, anybody can win these prizes. The point that I am trying to make is that the mushrooming competitions that you see is because businesses are now looking for customers. Unlike in the past, television sets are being won, branches are expanding and we have seen mobile vehicles going around compounds to look for customers. This is a new phenomenon that must be appreciated. These are not signs of a depressed economy.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, Constituency Development Fund (CDF) …

Mr Mubika: Mwila!

Mr Akakandelwa: … which was K30 million was increased to K200 million. Again I wish my cousin, Hon. Hamududu, was here because at one time he was boasting of how the hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing, Hon. Masebo, has empowered him so much so that it will be difficult to unseat him in the next election because he has so much money at his disposal. Those words came from him. Now, if that is not empowerment and is not appreciated then I do not know what you should appreciate. Now CDF has gone up to K400 million and probably with pressure it will be increased but that is not for me to decide. What CDF entails is that employment is being created in constituencies and infrastructure is being improved and therefore, your constituencies are developing and that is the evidence that you are bringing to this House and this is why you are even insisting that CDF should be increased. You must appreciate.

Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Deputy Minister will address the Chair.

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, I will do so. The consumer habits that have emerged in our communities also point to a performing economy. I know that we can do better but even developed countries, the so-called first world, have budget deficits. This is a fact and therefore, if you see a deficit in our Budget it is not something that can surprise anyone. 

Mr Speaker, I know that a good economic outlook has got threats and these threats are the issues of corruption, pilfering and issues like the acts of God such as the ones we are experiencing now, the floods. However, I am happy to report that the Government is rising to the challenges and if we address ourselves to floods, we have seen this Government exhibiting leadership by visiting affected areas. The defence forces have been deployed to help in the clearance of the drainages to let the water flow away and give comfort to our people.

Hon. Opposition Members: Kanyama!

Mr Akakandelwa: This Government has mobilised K16 billion under the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit. The DMMU has visited and supplied assistance and assessments are being done and the exercise will be countrywide because these problems are not limited to Southern Province alone.

Mr Speaker, Save Our Souls (SOS) has been sent to countries like Australia, International Organisations and the Red Cross. Our own internal organisation the MMCI has been to Chief Mwanachingwala and donated money and goods for the displaced people. Business houses have responded, we have seen Barclays Bank donate K250 million and Indo-Zambia Bank also came to their aid.

Mr Speaker, on a lighter note whilst I regret the natural calamities, Lozis turn disasters into opportunities and I urge my friends from the South to learn to turn disasters into opportunities. For us when we have water, it is the time to make money because we see you coming over and spend money.


Mr Akakandelwa: However, on a serious note, floods are a natural phenomenon and in Zambia, I can cite floods of 1968, 1978, and 1988 and 2008. It looks like every ten years, nature has to relieve itself and I am told that in 1958 we also had a bigger flood. What this mean is that sometime back Southern Province was complaining of drought, but now it has excess water and this also applies to Western Province where I come from where the drought affected the lakes and people were moving away because of lack of water. The vegetation was affected negatively because the water levels were going down and so it is nature militating against itself. That is the positive side of the floods, and we should remember that these are coming from the Heavenly Father, so he means well.


Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, I now want to talk about the NCC which is an investment on the part of the Government because there should be peace in the country. A good constitution can increase peace and security, therefore, this Government has a vision for this country, and like Hon. Mumbi  said, what God has put together let no man put asunder. We intend to actualize the NCC so that a good constitution is in place because this guarantees peace and security for economic stability and development.

Mr Speaker, like I said, this Government came into power in 2001, with 38 per cent. After the last elections, the rating has since risen to 42 per cent while for the other parties the figures are declining, but that is the nature of the game.

Mr Speaker, like I said the NCC has been a culmination of three Commissions of Enquiry. There was a reason for it to be set up because Parliament was not trusted and so the people out there said they needed to have an independent body and since there was merit in their lamentations hence the formation of the NCC in its current form.

Mr Speaker, at the NCC, the leadership is credible and democratically elected and it is national in character. There is no MMD dominance, but it is not that MMD has no fine minds to have run for those offices but we said, it is national. We think and act national and not on tribal or regional basis.

Mr Speaker, the President has shown humility, commitment, selflessness and seriousness in the manner he has managed the NCC and, therefore, credit must go to the leadership.

As a ministry we are definitely recruiting and if this Budget goes through we need to optimize the complements by transferring skills and empowering the youths. The defence forces are engaged in regional and International peace-keeping missions and our troops are held in high esteem, therefore, credit goes to the Command in the Zambia Army, Zambia Air Force, Zambia National Service and the Police.

Mr Speaker …


Mr Akakandelwa: I am a Minister.


Mr Akakandelwa: In peace time the troops also are deployed in civilian assignments like I have said before that our defence forces have handled the issues of bridges very well. However, a word of caution to our colleagues is that as leaders, we must be careful in the way we debate. We can insight, make or break peace and the manner in which you debate makes one wonder whether there is patriotism or someone has an agenda to bring trouble. I am speaking as a Zambian and if you are loyal to your country, I will expect a debate that is well balanced and not the one that has a tone of a person who is about to go rabid.


Mr Akakandelwa: We should not depend on points of order, but must debate …

Mr Speaker: Order! The word rabid is unparliamentary, can you withdraw it and move on.

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, I withdraw the word rabid, but I am not sure what word to replace it with.

Mr Speaker, I request our friends not to abuse us, they should advise and we will go along with their views. Show us that you have leadership qualities and that …

Hon. Opposition Members: Time up!

Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member’s time has expired!

Mr Nyirenda (Kamfinsa): Mr Speaker, I thank you for this opportunity to add my voice to the debate on the 2008 Budget whose theme is ‘Unlocking Resources for Economic Empowerment and Wealth Creation’.


Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, the theme sounds very good and encouraging to listen to, but the …

Mr Speaker: Order! May the House, please consult quietly I want to hear what the hon. Member is saying.

Mr Nyirenda: The question one would like to ask is, is the theme really going to unlock the resources and create wealth for the people of Zambia? I have found out that in most cases this House has passed nice policies which have come on the Floor of this House, but none of them has taken off for simple reasons. Most of these policies are not backed up by any task forces. For instance, last time the President said all hon. Members will be responsible for the projects that are taking place in their areas. We were issued with letters although no single ministry within my constituency told me how much they were allocated and how much we will get and so in this case, how do we look into the Government’s interest?

I find this point to be very important in the sense that every policy that is passed here should be backed up by a task force to ensure that things are implemented. In so doing, it appears we just borrow the ideas from other institutions which we cannot implement. Mr Speaker, we should all get involved so that we implement the policies which are being passed in this House.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, there has been a number of issues that have been tackled in here, but the question still remains whether we are forging ahead or moving backward. If we are to prosper and become a middle income country, then we must protect agro policies and guard them jealously so that we achieve our goals mostly the MDGs.

Mr Mwila: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, here I have seen that there are a lot of things that we can do, but allow me to point out some grey areas in the Budget Speech which I would like to look and these are agriculture; manufacturing; education; health; mining and local government.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hammer!

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, on agriculture, even preliminary data shows that the sector grew by 2.8 per cent in the farming season 2006/2007 and this year you should expect it to go down. Why? This is because during the financial year 2006/2007 we had a good harvest. I would say it was a bumper harvest because the agriculture sector was funded by the Fertiliser Support Programme (FSP) which was introduced because of the elections. After the elections, we do not have this attire at all.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: We were told we were going to have fertiliser and that it would go down by 50 per cent. Now has this 50 per cent reduction on fertiliser come up? For instance, in my constituency which has gone into farming on a subsistence level, not even a single person has had the fertiliser in spite of paying a deposit which you were collecting. All these things are showing that we are more interested in creating these issues during election time. Can we, therefore, be having elections every year so that we have bumper harvests?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, we have not seen these things and this year has been a let down because signs are that we only care for our people during the election time. On this point I urge the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives to see to it that things are done in accordance with the requirements of the people.

In most areas you delivered urea fertilizer first and D-compound fertilizer is being delivered now.

Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!

Mr Nyirenda: Where is the planning? What comes first? Is it D-compound or urea?

Hon. Opposition Member: It is D – compound.

Mr Nyirenda: It is true that poor planning has also cost us a lot in this aspect.

Mr Speaker, I now want to dwell manufacturing. In this country we had a lot of manufacturing industries such as the motor vehicle workshops whereby we could assemble the Fiat 127, 124, 131 but today we are depending on Japanese vehicles which are second hand. Why can we not revamp the workshop we have in Livingstone called Inga and VENOVA limited in Ndola to assemble vehicles. These are things that are letting our country down, we cannot unlock the resources if we do not venture in manufacturing.

Hon Opposition Member: Good.

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, at one time Livingstone was very good in the manufacturing sector particularly for things like clothing, jerseys etc. All these things were there but today, there is nothing. Come to Ndola, Ndola has become a ghost town because the many manufacturing companies we had there are no longer. Therefore, I suggest to this Government that we should encourage locally produced goods 
Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

 Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, today, we have seen salaula taking a larger part of our clothing industries yet Sambro Limited and other knitting companies are out of business. Why is this so, it is because our policies are not well guarded and not well examined. I say so because I have seen that we are even allowing cheap quality goods coming here to compete with our expensive goods. This shows that there is no system of monitoring or checking these goods which are coming in.

Mr Speaker, let me move to the plastic industry where I have an interest. These people make very beautiful plastic products but there is no market here because our country is flooded with cheap plastic products from Tanzania and other parts of the country.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hammer!

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, what has happened to our customs? Why are we doing such things at a rate that we undermine our own products. Same goes for ZAMEFA. We produce and export copper in this country but what products do we make out of the copper? ZAMEFA instead of being encouraged is being discouraged. When are we going to have such enthusiasm in our country? I think it is high time that we did away with imports and concentrated on well tailored imports like what South Africa is doing. South Africa has banned most of the Chinese goods because they are of low quality.

Mr Mwila: Hear, hear, and hammer!

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, I will now look at Education. We appreciate the effort the Ministry is doing by building schools in various places in the country. The question is do we…
Hon. PF Member: The capacity

Mr Nyirenda: … the facilities in these schools like text books, laboratories and libraries? In my constituency where we only have one high school, Ndeke High School, there are no library facilities, no laboratories and there are no text books for the children to use.

Hon. Opposition Member: Lila mudala.

Mr Nyirenda: Why should we continue building schools if we do not put up equipment and tools? The hon. Minister of Education should see to it that schools being built and the old ones are well equipped.

Hon. Government Member: Lila mudala, lila.

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, I urge the hon. Minister to equip the schools as they build them so that we have quality education in the country instead of building schools for the sake of it or just to have mass production of schools which have no facilities.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, it is very disappointing indeed to see that we have a number of students or pupils at school who are eager to learn but at the end of the day, we only have ten students going to the University of Zambia or the Copperbelt University. Why is this so, it is because we do not have enough equipment and facilities in. We also do not have equipment for domestic science although they claim that there are solar systems or panels. If solar systems are there, then they are not well maintained and so it is important that we have equipment in all areas of concern.

Major Chizhyuka: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, I now want to discuss health issues. I thank the Minister of Health for the effort he is making in putting up hospitals throughout the country. The ministry is building clinics, mini-hospitals and even hospitals. However, we are forgetting that the most important thing is not the structure which should be there but also the drugs. There are no drugs in the hospitals which are mushrooming here and there. The Ministry must also provide linen and food in these health facilities if we are going to have a healthy nation. Mr Speaker, I feel that the health sector should improve from its present state to higher heights.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, let me come to mining.

Mr Mwila: Hammer, mudala!

Mr Nyirenda: Mr Speaker, I will not dwell much on the mining sector since we have already heard about the windfall tax coming up in the mining industry. But the question is, will this windfall tax be implemented immediately? I am asking this because we read in the press that negotiations have not yet been done or this and that. Why are there delays in the execution of the negotiations? Last time we talked about 3 per cent but up to now that has not been implemented.

Hon. Opposition Member: Bwekeshenipo!

Mr Nyirenda: This was supposed to be done in the year 2007, but it is only now that they say they are going to implement the 3 per cent on royalties. What provisions is the windfall tax going to work in?

Therefore, it is the duty of this House and mostly the Executive to implement these policies. Sometimes I wonder whether we make these policies or we just grab them from somewhere else. We can implement policies that we formulate on our own and not what we copy from somewhere else. Therefore, I request the Executive to ensure that we do things which are within our limit and not just getting them as cosmetics.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: Otherwise, the whole budget will be cosmetic. It may not even be in the line of what it ought to be.

Mr Speaker, if at all windfall tax is implemented, I can see that Zambia will be Heaven on Earth and we will not be dependant on the aid-funded budget. We have for sometime now lived on the budget that is funded by foreign countries. At the moment, the US$415 billion that we hope to raise from the windfall tax, the Government will use it to improve the welfare of the people. For sure, we are going to be amongst the middle income countries.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: On this point, we see that things maybe moving in the right direction.

Finally, let me talk about local Government. It is amazing to hear hon. Members and councillors being blamed for the jobs which are supposed to be done by the local Government. It is the local Government which is being funded and not hon. Members or councillors. However, I appreciate the effort that the Ministry of Local Government is making regarding the equal distribution of wealth. I wish the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) was increased so that we see real development in our constituencies.
Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: This will do a better service to the constituencies. Let the Ministry of Local Government and Housing ensure that the small amount of money allocated to every constituency is used to develop it up to a certain level. Hence, I call for the increase in the CDF.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nyirenda: As alluded to, by everyone, a billion or more would be appreciated. We should move step by step because we cannot jump from K200,000,000 to K5 billion or K10 billion. Let us increase that amount to K1 billion and see how we are going to use it. After all, we do not handle the money but just plan for things that are required in our constituencies.

Hon. Opposition Members: Correct!

Mr Nyirenda: Therefore, the equity issue comes into effect.

Mr Speaker, it is very important that hon. Members are utilised in monitoring projects in their constituencies. If that point is emphasised and carried out, we shall see a better Zambia tomorrow.

With these few words, I thank you.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Minister of Copperbelt Province (Mr Mbulakulima): Mr Speaker, it gives me profound pleasure, and a deep sense of gratitude, to stand in this august House and contribute to the debate on this well articulated budget that was presented in this very august House.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, allow me to comment on tourism. I was, exceptionally, excited when the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning informed this august House that the earnings in the tourism sector have increased from an estimated US$177 million to US$188 million in the year 2006. This is a sure confirmation that the Tourism Industry is on the right path.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, the positive performance of this industry is not accidental. It has come about because of this Government’s desire to diversify and improve various sectors of the economy.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: We have seen how this Government has moved away from the total dependence on copper as the only source of foreign earnings to agriculture, tourism and so on demonstrating that this country is not short of avenues to raise and earn foreign exchange.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, with regard to mining, as hon. Minister for the Copperbelt, I will be failing in my duties if I do not commend the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning for coming out clearly on issues of mining. Hon. Members are aware that the increased mining activities on the Copperbelt have greatly contributed to the growth of this economy. Poverty levels have gone down as many people are now employed. And with employment comes a happy and health people and so is most people on the Copperbelt. As you can see, the people of the Copperbelt are now even looking much healthier and happier.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: An example is Hon. Davis Mwila …

Mr A. Banda: Kambwili!

Mr Mbulakulima: … Hon Jean Phiri, Member of Parliament for Luanshya, Hon. Kambwili …


Mr Speaker: Order! I have ruled that there will be no points of order. Now, that is the kind of debate which attracts points of order. Will the hon. Deputy Minister of Copperbelt move away from that kind of debating and deal with mining and other topics.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, I thank you for your guidance. It is also true that the mines have brought life not only to the Copperbelt, but also to the country as a whole.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, with the current macroeconomic stability and removal of Zambia’s debt burden, let alone, the introduction of the Citizen Economic Empowerment, definitely, Zambia is destined for enormous growth.

Mr Speaker, I would like to comment on education. I sometimes wonder why people have problems in appreciating tangible things that this Government is doing. It was true when the hon. Minister of Finance National Planning said that teachers were recruited and sent to various places. Milenge District which houses my constituency was the first one to receive 120 teachers in Luapula Province.

This again, goes to show how serious we are, as a Government, in terms of engaging in education. The people of Milenge District are very encouraged by this development as the presence of teachers in the area signifies hope that rural areas need.

Mr Speaker, the introduction of the third public university in Kabwe is no mean achievement. This clearly demonstrates the magnanimity of this Government. When do people remember the last time infrastructure development took place in our universities? It is only under this Government that we have seen the development of infrastructure at the Great East Road Campus and the Copperbelt university.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, with regard to agriculture, as hon. Member emanating from the rural set up, agriculture is the placenta of my people’s livelihood. The food supplies that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning is referring to in his budget presentation are a result of different policies of this Government on agriculture.

The metaphysical problems of acquiring fertiliser and seed are a thing of the past. Zambia has continued to register itself as one of the countries in the sub-region that can contribute to the mitigation of poverty. It is a categorical fact that this Administration has put agriculture at the centre stage of this economy’s development.

Hon. Members of this House may be aware that this Government has got limited space for politicking as our people have given us a mandate to bring development. I know this is disappointing to some of our colleagues who like engaging infertile debates at the expense of our people. What people want is economic emancipation and not political rhetorics.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

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

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

Ms Limata (Luampa): Mr Speaker, thank you for giving me this chance to speak on behalf of the people of Luampa and Western Province at large.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Limata: Sir, I want to comment on a few issues and the first one is education. I need the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to put more money in education for the rehabilitation of classrooms and houses for teachers.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Limata: Sir, in my constituency, I have old model schools which have been forgotten by this Government. I doubt whether the Minister of Education has ever visited these schools. 
Sir, I now move to agriculture. The Government has forgotten about the rural people in terms of agriculture. I say so because in my constituency, there is nobody who has benefited from the Fertiliser Support Programme. If the Government does not do something in rural areas, then the people in these places will suffer.  Hon. Mwangala mentioned something about winter farming which we call, matapa.  It is true that in Western Province we used to grow maize in July and October but now this is not happening because the Government has forgotten about us. They no longer give agriculture inputs in Western Province and that is why hunger is all over the province. Therefore, I need the Hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to listen to our request as people of Western Province.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Limata: Mr Speaker, it is the same for local government. I urge the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to increase Constituency Development Fund from K400 million to K1.5 billion.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Limata: Sir, this will help the hon. Members in this House to do their best in their constituencies.

Sir, the Ministry of Works and Supply should make sure we have good roads in the whole country. If there are ways and means, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning must look into this issue seriously.

Mr Speaker, under health, I would like to say that at Luampa Hospital, we do not have proper blankets, mattresses, trained staff and an ambulance. Mr Speaker, I urge the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to add more money for the ministry so that the rural people can feel that they are part and parcel of this country.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Limata: Mr Speaker, in conclusion, I would like to urge the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to listen to our pleas by putting more money in CDF so that we can do better in our constituencies.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms J. P. Phiri (Luanshya): Mr Speaker, thank you for giving me this opportunity to add my voice to this very important motion on the Floor.

Mr Speaker, to start with, I just want to quote one of the African Writers who has written a very powerful book which I would like the Executive to read. This is, “Power Perspective.” His name is Mr Sizwe Nxasana. He says and I quote,

“Getting appointed or nominated to a leadership position is the easy part. Now, try gaining trust and support. Try inspiring and motivating them towards the economy goal and you will find that this is more difficult.”

Mr Speaker, I am also a very strong believer of one quotation that people tend to confuse leadership with power. Although there is a relationship between leadership and power, it is the opposite of what it is often thought to be. To be a truly great leader, one must be able to give away control without abducting responsibility. Leadership is not about how many people you control but about how many people you liberate.

Sir, the job of a leader is to be a catalyst, facilitator, to provide inspiration and motivation. This Budget has failed us again.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms J. P. Phiri: Mr Speaker, as I am speaking, I would have loved that the controllers of the finances of this nation were sitting in that Chair. I am very disappointed that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning is not in this House because I wanted him to listen to what I am going to say. Not even his Deputy Minister, who is my nephew is in the House. I do not know where they are.

Sir, women empowerment is a subject which cuts across and yet not adequately catered for. The Ministry of Community Development and Social Services is a very powerful ministry which considers the vulnerable in the community. When I look at this Budget, I shudder because instead of improving on it - The hon. Minister of Community Development and Social Services is such a strong woman and all of you will agree with me in this House today. She runs that ministry almost single handedly.


Ms J Phiri: I appreciate the hon. Deputy Ministers in her ministry as well. Unfortunately, I would like to say that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning has cut down her Budget. I do not know if they want her to fail in the administration and in achieving the goals of that ministry.

Sir, I am saying so because…

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1815 hours until 1830 hours.

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

Mrs J N Phiri: Mr Speaker, when business was suspended, I was saying that I would have really loved to see the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning in the House as I am …

Dr Machungwa: He has come.

Mrs J N Phiri: Thank you very much, welcome!


Mrs J N Phiri: Mr Speaker, I was wondering if at all this Budget was meant for us women. This is because usually as women when running these ministries, sometimes I wonder whether men are supporting us. Do the men really want to see women accomplish goals? Sometimes that comes to my mind. I say so because the subject of women often comes across, and yet, it is not adequately catered for. You can tell from the title of the Ministry that it is the Ministry of Community Development and Social Services, it cuts across women, children and social welfare. This means that we have the women, the disabled, the blind and the youths, and they are the back bone of the economy of the nation. However, they are not adequately catered for.

Mr Speaker, I would like to appeal to the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to look into this problem, which I have raised on the Floor of this House, very seriously. Actually, I would freely advise him that the K900 billion for projects which we heard was returned to the treasury should have come to Luanshya Constituency, where we have a lot of poor people, but let him give this amount to the Ministry of Community Development and social Services so that the women, youths and the disabled can adequately utilise it.

Mr Speaker, I have laboured enough in that area but before I move to another ministry, I want to give free advice. As women, we are the ones who fight and we need to fight the main key gender concern which, today, is what known as the feminisation of poverty.

Mr Speaker, I now move to education and before that, I just want give another free advice. Mother Theresa said when you fail, you should not - Many are times when people, especially, hon. Ministers come on the Floor of the House and give us really weak answers. I do not know the word which would best describe the answers. When they come to the Floor of the House with answers to the questions we ask, they give very freezy and flimsy answers as though they fear to be fired. Do not fear to be fired. The President does not mean to fire you. If you heard when he was speaking in this House, he said he would love you to deliver and you are failing to deliver. What is causing you not to deliver? Is it because you are afraid of failure?

I have seen my brother whom I respect a lot shaking his head.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs J N Phiri: My brothers, failure is a foot stool of success. It is a stepping stone for you to get to higher heights. Therefore, do not fear failure. I do not even know if the hon. Minister of Education knows that one of the schools in Luanshya Constituency, Arusha Primary School, where the President started his career is dilapidated.

Hon. PF Member: His career?


Mrs J N Phiri: I strongly believe that education is what puts me into my future. Sir, what causes the children to be on the streets today? We want to blame the failure on the woman and mothers. You will agree with me that every time a child is doing very well, we hear men say “my son”. He will say this is my son. However, when the child is not doing very well, they will say, “that is your daughter”.

Hon. Member: And when the daughter is doing well?

Mrs J N Phiri: This is my daughter.


Mrs J N Phiri: Mr Speaker, I am a very disappointed mother as I stand here because of this Budget. This is my honest opinion about this Budget. Sir, I do not know, and I stand to be corrected, if this word, hollow, is parliamentary.

Mr Speaker, this Budget is very hollow.

Mr Speaker: Order! It is not parliamentary. It is unparliamentary.


Mrs J N Phiri: Mr Speaker, I withdraw the word but I do not know what to replace it with but I just want to say that it has not catered for us. I say so because …

Hon. PF Member: It is hopeless.

Mrs J N Phiri: Yes, indeed, it is hopeless. Thank you.

Mr Speaker, the sustainers of the economy are women. However, looking at this Budget, the women are not catered for. In the education sector, the women are left out without a word and I want to give …

Dr Machungwa hands her a bottle of water

Mr Kambwili: Isuleni bamudala

Mrs J N Phiri: I thank you for the water. Mr Speaker, on education, I have a report from Luanshya Constituency to the hon. Minister of Education. I warned the hon. Minister that I am a woman of integrity and when I see potential in somebody, I tell them that they have the potential to deliver.

Mr Mukanga: Amen

Mrs J. N. Phiri: I told him to give me an answer because I had a problem in my constituency. I am sorry hon. Minister that I have to bring this issue to the Floor of the House because you did not come back to me. We have written a report in Luanshya Constituency and since this House would desire that I speak with facts, here is a fact if you are interested. Luanshya Constituency has forty-five community schools put up by the vulnerable residents of Luanshya, who include the orphans, widows, widowers and people living with HIV/AIDS. They wanted their children to get educated but we did not get any support.  What happened is that they sent our girl children 10 Kilometres to 15 Kilometres from these community schools which are giving these children education only up to grade 4.

This means that these other schools are the only eight basic schools in Luanshya. Actually, in my constituency I have two basic schools in the rural area that is there. The hon. Minister sitting here would come on the Floor of the House to answer if I had asked him a question of what happened to Luanshya Boys Secondary School.

I wish I could be allowed to cry, …


Ms J. N. Phiri: … I would have cried on this Floor of the House, right now. This is because these children who live 15 Kilometres to 20 Kilometres in the outskirts of Luanshya have worked hard to get to a secondary school level. What has this so called caring Government done?

Mr Mukanga: It is not.

Ms J. N. Phiri: What have they done? I do not know whether they have put it in written because up to now I have not received any notice. I am one of those who are vulnerable and affected. Luanshya Boys Secondary school has been there since Kaunda time …

Mr Mukanga: Hear, hear!

Mrs J. N. Phiri: … and he worked very hard to put the standards of the school high. Today, as I speak on this Floor of the House, the Grade 8 children who passed so well are stranded in Luanshya Constituency. He should go there to prove this point. I told him to prove it, but up to now he has not done so.

Hon. Opposition Member: Cry.


Mrs J. N. Phiri: Therefore, I really do not know what the hon. Minister wants me to do in a constituency that has forty-five community schools. Ndendele, Arusha Mwipulu primary schools, you cannot stand the site of those schools, Mr Speaker. You would not like it and so I do not know what the hon. Minister is doing in that sector.

Mr Speaker, Mother Theresa said, ‘do not allow yourself to be disheartened by any failure as long as you have done your best’ You have not done your best. Mr Speaker, when the President appointed a professor from the University of Zambia, I thought now, credibility and good education is coming to Luanshya Constituency.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms J. N. Phiri: Failure is a stepping stone like I said hon. Minister, work on it!

Mr Mukanga: Yes, he is a failure.


Ms J. N. Phiri: Mr Speaker, the other area that has really disheartened me as I stand here and I am speaking from facts. For those people who really want facts, I want you to go to University Teaching Hospital (UTH) to witness. I cannot see the Minister of Health here again. These are very important ministries, therefore, the hon. Ministers should be here to listen on their own to what we say.

Mr Speaker, my young sister runs a home. We call it a home because we give hope to those children who are called street children when they are not street children. There are on the streets because of the poverty levels in nation. One of them was sick and we took him to the Paediatric Ward and the roof there is leaking ...

Mr Mukanga: The roof is leaking.

Ms J. N. Phiri: … as I am talking right now. The Japanese put up a very good structure, I do know why we get donations when we cannot utilise them well. If we cannot utilise the donations well - Now with K900 billion which is sitting there, I do not know where the hon. Minister has put it…


Ms J. N. Phiri: Why do you not take it there for use?

Hon. Opposition Members: And repair the roof.

Ms J. N. Phiri: If UTH which is on the nose of the ministry cannot be looked after well, what about Thompson Hospital.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms J. N. Phiri: Are you going to look after it well? Are you going to put up the standards which people are looking for? Do not vie for presidency …

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms J. N. Phiri: … if you have not put up proper standards where you are, do not. As a woman I am offering good advice to those of you who want to contest for Presidency.

Mr Speaker: Order! Order!


Mr Speaker: The hon. Member will address the Chair.


Ms J. N. Phiri: Mr Speaker, I was just saying that we are looking, …

Mr D. Mwila: Wekeshapo!

Ms J. N. Phiri: … we are watching and the bible says, ‘where you have not sowed a seed do not expect a harvest’.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms J. N. Phiri: Mr Speaker, this time around as women we are watching and we are not going to vote for a male president if they have not delivered.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Ms J. N. Phiri: So, do not expect that.


Ms J. N. Phiri: In my conclusion, Mr Speaker, I would love to give advice to the Executive to learn from their failures. Look at your failures so that when you come into this House and we ask - I really, respect my big brother very much and he knows that and he knows that I am a prophetess.


Ms J. N. Phiri: Yes, I am a prophetess and what I am going to say in this House today, listen to it very carefully because it is important. It is not demons. I can prophesy your life and if you think it is a demon watch your life.


Mr Mukanga: Amen.


Ms J. N. Phiri: If it is not going to be fulfilled - Ask Hon. Magande.


Ms J. N. Phiri: We should learn from our failures and on this I include myself because I am also a failure ...

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms J. N. Phiri: … in many things. I love to fail because I learn from failure and I know where I went wrong and as such I am able to stand.


Ms J. N. Phiri: Ni jealous nomba na imwe ba Magande.

Ms J. N. Phiri sat down.

Mr Speaker: The hon. Member may continue, please.


Ms J. N. Phiri: To learn from our failures is to achieve success. Do not fear to be fired. Never to afford is never to have one. Unless, we experience failure and its bitterness, we will never appreciate the sweetness of victory.

Hon.  Members: Hear, hear!

Ms J. N. Phiri: My brothers and sisters, the people of this country are saying enough is enough. Now, it is the people saying enough is enough. Mr Speaker, we have not tackled the manufacturing industry in this budget.

Mr Speaker, the other thing is that we have not tackled the farming industry in the budget. We have also not tackled the issue of levies twapapata. Levy is even on fuel. There is all sorts of levies, I wish I was an accountant to quote these properly. It is levy this, levy that.


Ms J. N. Phiri: Mr Speaker, even Zimbabwe whose economy is going down, you cannot compare this country to Zimbabwe in terms of the economy because even trays of eggs are coming from there. What a shame! Mr Speaker, I thank you and I appreciate the fact that you gave me this opportunity to contribute to the debate on the Motion.


Ms J. N. Phiri: Mr Speaker, on Constituency Development Funds (CDF) I would like to say that because she is my friend, she has done very well.


Ms J. N. Phiri: Yes, honestly speaking, look at the Deputy Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry and allow me to say something about commerce and industry. I admire the hon. Minister because one day I approached her here but I was advised to see the registrar of companies and that within three days I would get my certificate. For sure, in three days the certificate was out.  These are the Ministers we want.


Ms J. N. Phiri: Ayikona ababufi. Do not tell us lies in this House, we do not want liars.


Ms J. N. Phiri: Mr Speaker, in conclusion, I would like to say that success only comes with failure, then you will be victorious and we will vote for you.

I thank you, Sir.

Laughter {mospagebreak}

The Deputy Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Ms Siliya): Thank you very much, Mr Speaker, for this opportunity to add my voice to the many that have already contributed to the budget speech which was presented by Hon. Magande and whose theme this year is, ‘Unlocking Resource for Economic Empowerment and Wealth Creation.’

In that regard, Mr Speaker, I would like to share an old English adage with the House. That is, ‘it is better to be prepared and have no opportunity than to have an opportunity and not be prepared’. I share this adage in relation to our 2030 Vision where we have agreed as citizens that, by 2030 our output is going to be a middle income country. Where we have agreed that by 2030, we are going to transform the economy from depending on extractive industries such as mining and agriculture, to value addition to services such as financial services, insurance and others.

Mr Sichilima: Quality!

Ms Siliya: Where we have agreed as citizens, Mr Speaker, that by 2030, we are going to retain and create more jobs and create wealth. We have agreed that by 2030 the output will be to continue to position Zambia, as a competitive economy in the region and in the world.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, those are the outputs of the Vision 2030. Today, we have to discuss the inputs required to transform this country into a middle income country by 2030.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, the policy of this Government has been consistent since 1991 and that is that Government has no business in business but will continue to provide an enabling environment where innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship is harnessed, embraced, supported and encouraged because we believe that it is the private sector that will grow this economy by creating jobs and wealth. If the citizens of this country make money then the Government also makes money and does what it knows best and that is to provide social services to the citizens.

Mr Speaker, I think this year’s Budget theme, “Unlocking Resources For Economic Empowerment and Wealth Creation” could not have come at a better time considering the economic scenario that we are going through. I just want to share with you something that I learned recently from a Malaysian consultant. He said that there is no economy in the world that can grow unless it is anchored on three pillars and one of them is political leadership that can be demonstrated. The other pillars are a civil service with integrity and a private sector that is responsive and dynamic.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, within the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry we are pushing this agenda through the Triangle of Hope and the Private Sector Development Reform Programme. In terms of political leadership, this country has continued to practice democratic politics with the fight against corruption at the centre of our development agenda. In addition to our political commitment to grow the economy, we have managed to stabilise the economy and the macro indicators reflect this. I know that there has been a lot of debate about the relevance of macro economic indicators and people have rightly argued that the citizens of this country will not eat macro economic indicators. However, let me just demonstrate the importance of these indicators with some common advice that my tribe gives to newly wedded couples and that is, you need to provide an enabling environment in the home if you are going to have offsprings. It is the same for the economy. We need to have stability in the economy so that we can make informed decisions so that Government can make long term plans and the private sector can make decisions with certainty.

Hon. members: Hear, hear! 

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, to further demonstrate our commitment to growing this economy, the Government in 2006 brought to this House two very important Acts, and that is the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) Act and the Citizen’s Economic Empowerment (CEE) Act.

Mr Speaker, allow me to say a bit more on the ZDA Act. I have heard the concerns in this House about the ZDA, particularly, from the hon. Member for Kanchibiya  who alluded to the fact that the ZDA is not friendly to local investors but to foreign investors. Allow me to reiterate that the ZDA is for both foreign and local investors. At the close of 2007, we saw investment in this country of over US$2.7 billion and I want to emphasise that we must be doing something right. Today, I was reading a publication by Goldman Sachs and it is called ‘The Global Economic Weekly’ for 30th January, 2008. In one of their indicators for the most improved ten economies in the world, they are using an indicator called the Growth Environment Score. They picked ten countries and you will be happy to know that Zambia was number one followed by Nigeria, Argentina, Dominican Republic …

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: … Syria, Ghana, Belarus, Angola, Uruguay …


Mr Speaker: Order! For the record, I would like to hear the names of those countries.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, allow me to repeat that the publication entitled Global Economics Weekly published by Goldman Sachs for 30th January, 2008 listed the ten most improved economies in the world. I was very pleased to note that Zambia was recognised as the most improved country out of the ten most improved economies in the world.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Followed by Nigeria, Argentina, Dominican Republic, Syria, Ghana, Delarosa, Angola, Uruguay and Russia.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, under the demonstration to continue to provide an enabling environment, this year we are projecting to attract more than US$3 billion in terms of investment and to make sure that we create over 100,000 jobs for the citizens.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, it is common knowledge that the investment that we have seen in the past has gone into industries such as mining industries where we have seen Chambeshi Mine already spend over US$200 million. The Lafarge cement expansions, Zambia Sugar, Albidon Mine and Lumwana Mine.

Mr Speaker, another instrument to be used to expand the economy is the Citizens Economic Empowerment (CEE). Sir, We do recognise that there is a lot of economic development taking place in the country, but there is also need for the citizens themselves to participate. I did hear some of the observations by the hon. Members and if I recall very well, it was Hon. Matongo who said that they are concerned about how the CEE fund will work compared to other funds in the past.

 I want to assure this House that this is why we have taken a while to start implementing the CEE fund. It is because we want to consult widely and make sure that we identify the right financial institution to disburse these funds and make sure that we put in place a mechanism where this fund is close to all the people in Zambia so that they do not have to leave Petauke, Mongu or Chipata to come to Lusaka to access these funds.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: The CEE Secretariat is operational and by the end of March, 2008, it will be fully operational and we expect that by April, 2008, we will start disbursing these funds. The only challenge is that we, the citizens must rise to the occasion and take advantage of the opportunities in the economy and ensure that we benefit.

Mr Speaker, as the Budget theme goes, it might not meet everybody’s expectations, but if we have a mindset of not wanting to succeed, we will not and this is why the biggest challenge at this point in this country is a mindset change and a realisation that we cannot do things as usual. It is a paradigm shift.

Mr Speaker, again, I want to use a term I used last year that we need almost mental infrastructure re-engineering to be able to appreciate the advantages and opportunities that are being presented by the economy.

Mr Speaker, in terms of Civil Service, we continue under the Private Sector Development Reform Programme to make sure that the public must realise that Government is not in competition with the private sector, but that we are a partner of the private sector and that we will do everything possible to make sure that the Civil Service is client oriented and that we do not duplicate processes and add to the cost of doing business in this country. We also want to remove all feasible barriers to make sure that as an investor that you, yourselves hon. Members and the public as entrepreneurs should make sure that Government offers you all the best business services as possible for your businesses to grow. Again, if you make money, Government makes money too.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, the Zambian private sector has continued to perform past our expectations. I will just give a few examples to demonstrate that there are Zambians in this economy who are doing well and we will continue to support them through 2008 so that we can see them graduate from little Tuntembas to big businesses. Just a few days ago, the hon. Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry and I were with the Zambia Bottling Company and we were happy to note that the Tuntemba business distributing Coca Cola in this country are turning over K3 billion every month. Therefore, it is our responsibility to work with them so that they can graduate from Ntemba business to probably distributors and move into other businesses in this country.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, there is a company called Choice Nuts which is buying ground nuts from Eastern Province and with the support of ZATEC through the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry and American funds we have been able to offer technical support to this processing plant and link them with Tiger Brands in South Africa where they have now started exporting Peanut Butter. You can actually see from the groundnut producer in the Eastern Province to agro-processing in Lusaka up to an export market in South Africa. That is a dynamic private sector.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, we are expecting that this year the non-traditional exports are going to increase by 30 per cent from US$880 million worth of exports in 2007.

Mr Speaker, going back to mind sets, I have heard the term poverty reduction for quite a long time now and I think we have to move from thinking negatively. The phrase poverty reduction are two negative terms. I want to believe positive and think that we should be talking about three positive words such as wealth and job creation.

Mr Speaker, there is a very interesting story that I want to tell, to share with this House to demonstrate what I am talking about. There was an Indian man who was selling shoes and he told his son that “Look our market is saturated so please go to Africa and look for business” and when the son came here after three days all his enthusiasm had evaporated. He went back and when his father saw him he was very pleased and said “My son, did you find us business?” The son said “No father” then he said why? The son answered “Well I covered many kilometres in Africa and I saw so many people.” And the father was a bit surprised and said “So what is the problem?” and the son said “Well there were so many people father but they had no shoes. So we have no business.” The father turned around and said “My son that is the potential. If all those people in Africa - multitudes of them had no shoes that is where the potential is.”

Mr Speaker, I just want to demonstrate how some people will see in this Budget the possibilities, the glass half full and accepting that even if there might be deficiencies, weaknesses, we see the opportunities while other people will continue to remain in the part of the glass that is half empty and will see nothing but doom.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Please, hon. Members I ask you to join us in seeing the possibilities that are there for this country.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, I know that there has been a lot of discussion about the lack of infrastructure in this country. I do accept that we still need to do more. However, I am still seeing business happening, particularly in the mining industry and the projections are that by 2010, this country will be transporting almost a million tonnes of copper using this very infrastructure. Again, we accept the challenges, but we have to face the challenges head on. As they say, you surely cannot change everything you face, but you can surely not change what you do not face.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: We in the Ministry of Commerce Trade and Industry are prepared to face all the challenges that are facing the private sector so that we can create a dynamic private sector and that this private sector can be of best international standard and create wealth and jobs for this nation.

Mr Speaker, I know that a lot of people do not realise the link between investment, whether it is foreign or local, to jobs and like I said, the inputs for 2030 are that we want a middle income country but we must get there and we must provide the inputs and these inputs are mindset change, an entrepreneurship spirit, cultural change and realising that this is not business as usual. For those who want to remain behind, they will remain behind but we can demonstrate effectively all the good things that are happening in the economy and I urge that all of us as leaders, and as hon. Members will be the first ones to provide that leadership and  that entrepreneurship so that we can all create jobs and wealth and Government can then make money and do what it does best and that is to provide social services.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chanda (Kankoyo): Mr Speaker, I thank you for according me this opportunity to contribute to the debate on this Motion.

First and foremost, I will comment on Pay-As –You-Earn. I am aware that the hon. Member of Parliament for Pemba (Mr Matongo) tackled this issue from the management point of view but I would like to add my side from the union point of view.

Mr Speaker, the threshold has been increased from K500,000 to K600,000. Now, what does this mean? Does this benefit a worker in any way? Sir, I say no. There is a minimal difference of K100,000 from what it was last year. Meanwhile, unions have been negotiating and most of them suggested an increment which is over K1000. What does this tell us? It means there is no difference from where this worker was last year and what he will be getting this year. In actual fact, the new tax bands that have been introduced by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning will inevitably push people in higher income brackets. That being the case, I do not see how workers will end up with K64.8 billion in their pockets.

Sir, on the other hand, workers in this country have been extremely frustrated. After paying so much tax, the money in the Treasury is either misapplied or stolen by a few privileged public service workers.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chanda: Mr Speaker, when is this culture of stealing public money going to end in this country? It is sad to note that, for a long time in this country, we have glorified thieves …


Mr Chanda: … by calling them corrupt people. That word is too dignified for them. A person in the village will not understand who a corrupt person is. When these thieves are seated in their homes, they sit so comfortably because they know that their children will not understand what corruption means. They walk with their heads up and so it is high time this country or the Government started addressing these people by their right names. They are simply thieves! And a thief is a thief.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chanda: People die in hospitals because these thieves have taken aware the money. Mr Speaker, a miner out there is dieing underground and at the end of the day he pays tax, but he sees nothing out of that tax. Soon we will start going vote by vote and these public service workers will be saying that out of that allocation, I will steal K2 billion. It is a pity. It is upon that Government to flush out these thieves. And you flush them out! Unless you are also thieves …,


Mr Speaker: Order! You will withdraw the later part of your contribution.

Mr Chanda: Mr Speaker, I humbly withdraw.

Mr Speaker, let me move to health. The health sector in this country is nothing to talk about. I live near Ronald Ross Hospital in Mufulira. When this hospital was under ZCCM, it qualified to be called a hospital.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chanda: Sir, right now, if Mr Ronald Ross came back, he would withdraw his name from that hospital. He would advise this Government to call it Kafwafwa Hospital and not Ronald Ross Hospital because he would not be proud to be associated with that kind of a hospital.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hammer!

Mr Chanda: Mr Speaker, on the other hand, I am aware that this Government is doing something to improve the situation in the hospitals but is Government aware that out there, someone somewhere is undermining their efforts by stealing drugs and health equipment?

Mr Speaker, you have so called Drug Stores spotted near the hospitals. Where do they get the drugs from? Are they not selling our drugs in those Drug Stores? You should wake up and do something about those Drug Stores. Whenever you go to the hospitals, you are given prescriptions because there are no drugs. You will just walk a few metres away and you will find the drugs in the Drug Store. This is shameful indeed.

Mr Speaker, I urge the Minister to do something to serve the lives of the people who you are leading. Out there, people die from simple illnesses because the hospitals have no drugs. For somebody to come here and say that there are enough drugs, I feel pity.   The Drug Stores are synonymous with stealing. I think stealing in this country has become a symbol of authority. For someone to be a boss, he should be able to steal and that is when he is going to be respected in a ministry or elsewhere because he has a mansion which he cannot afford on his own.


Mr Chanda: Mr Speaker, I want to talk about HIV/AIDS. It is sad to note that despite the efforts being made by the Government and then non-governmental organisations, the infection rate is still going up. It is indicated that it has risen from 25,515 to 30,960 and this is mainly the productive AIDS. Do we know why we are getting these figures?

Sir, I would like to turn to the hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing, she should  take a drive to North Mead between 2000 hours and 2100 hours. What you will see, if you are Christian like me…


Mr Chanda:… you will not go back to that place. The point is that there is too much loose life in Zambia…

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chanda: …that needs to be controlled. The opening and closing of bars should be controlled. Somebody should be able to look into the age limits of people to be in night clubs. Our young daughters and sons are lured by those who have money because somebody has allowed them to enter the drinking place and they do whatever they want. That was not there when I was growing up. We would even fear to go near the bars. Now, why are we being so careless with our young generation? It is incumbent upon yourselves to put in control measures then you will see this figure of infection coming down. Some of you are enjoying because you are the ones patronising those places.


Mr Chanda: Mr Speaker, …

Mr Speaker: Order!

(Debate adjourned)


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 1916 hours until 1430 hours on Thursday, 7th February, 2008.