Debates- Wednesday, 16th January, 2008

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Wednesday, 16th January, 2008

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]






Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, in accordance with Standing Orders Numbers 152 and 154 to 157, the Standing Orders Committee has appointed the following Members to serve on Reforms and Modernisation Committees, the General Purposes Committee and the Portfolio Committees.

(i) Reforms and Modernisation Committee

The hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning;

The hon. Learned Minister of Justice;

The hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing;

Ms E. M. Imbwae, MP;

Mr C. Mulenga, MP;

Mr E. C. Mwansa, MP;

Mr B. Y. Mwila, MP;

Mr D. Matongo, MP;

Mrs A. C. K. Mwamba, MP; and

Mr S. Chisanga, MP.


Committee on Government Assurances

Mr J. B. Chongo, MP;

Mr S. Chitonge, MP;

Mr L. J. Ngoma, MP;

Mr S. Katuka, MP;

Mrs J. H. M. N. Phiri, MP;

Mr R. S. Mwapela, MP;

Mr S. Chisanga, MP; and

Mr E. N. Sing’ombe, MP.

Committee on Delegated Legislation

Mr B. Chella, MP;

Mr C. Kambwili, MP;

Mrs J. M. Limata, MP;

Ms J. C. Mumbi, MP;

Mr M. M. Mwangala, MP;

Mr V. M. Mooya, MP;

Mr Chifumu K. B. Banda, SC, MP; and

Mr H. L. Imasiku, MP.

Committee on Estimates

Mr B. Imenda, MP;

Mrs J. M. Limata, MP;

Mr L. J. P. Mulenga, MP;

Reverend G. Nyirongo, MP;

Dr G. L. Scott, MP;

Mr R. F. Tembo, MP;

Dr S. Chishimba, MP;

Mr G. M. Beene, MP; and

Mrs M. M. Masiye, MP.

(iii) Portfolio Committees

Committee on Local Governance, Housing and Chiefs’ Affairs

Mr B. J. Chongo, MP;

Mr A. C. Kanyanyamina, MP;

Mr E. Kasoko, MP;

Mr M. H. Malama, MP;

Mrs R. M. Musokotwane, MP;

Mr J. J. Mwiimbu, MP;

Dr K. Kalumba, MP; and

Mr A. Mbewe, MP.

Committee on Economic Affairs and Labour

Mr E. B. Chimbaka, MP;

Mr H. H. Hamududu, MP;

Mr M. M. Mabenga, MP;

Mrs R. M. Musokotwane, MP;

Mr B. M. Ntundu, MP;

Mr G. Lubinda, MP;

Mr C. W. Kakoma, MP; and

Dr C. A. Njobvu, MP.

The Committees will elect their Chairpersons at their meetings to be presided over by the Hon. Madam Deputy Speaker.

The appointment of Members to constitute the other Committees of the House will be announced at a later date.

Thank you.




16. Mr Mukanga (Kantanshi) asked the Minister of Education:

(a) what the role of the Bursaries Committee was; and

(b) which committee selected the final applicants for studies in the People’s Republic of China in 2005 and 2006 since the Bursaries Committee was not involved in the selection exercise.

The Deputy Minister of Education (Mr Sinyinda): Mr Speaker, the role of the Bursaries Committee is to give grants or loans or scholarships to the citizens of Zambia for the furtherance of their education. Therefore, to this effect, among other roles the Bursaries Committee has are the following:

(i) process and administer GRZ bursaries and loans for students at the University of Zambia and the Copperbelt University;

(ii) process and administer scholarships and fellowships offered by co-operating partners and/or agencies for Zambian students to study abroad.

Mr Speaker, the Bursaries Committee Secretariat short listed candidates for the Chinese scholarships based on the eligibility requirements prescribed by the Chinese Scholarships Council. The Bursaries Committee interviewed the candidates for the Chinese scholarships in both 2005 and 2006 in the presence of officials from the Chinese Embassy. In other words, the Bursaries Committee was involved in the selection exercise in the said years.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out what role the Bursaries Committee played in choosing the students who went to China when they did not undergo any interviews. How were they selected?

The Minister of Education (Professor Lungwangwa): Mr Speaker, the hon. Member for Kantanshi should get his facts right. The Bursaries Committee, as we have responded, was involved in the selection of the candidates. I have minutes of that Committee Selection Panel from the Bursaries Committee which indicate that eight candidates were interviewed for PhD studies and four were selected for scholarship awards.

The minutes go on to show that twenty-five candidates were interviewed for the same scholarships and fifteen were selected for Masters Programmes. The same minutes go on to show that nine candidates were interviewed for Undergraduate Studies and five were selected for the scholarships and these minutes were confirmed and signed by the Chairperson of the committee. Therefore, I do not know where the hon. Member is getting his distorted facts…

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Professor Lungwangwa: …in this particular item. I lay the minutes of the committee on the Table.

Professor Lungwangwa laid the paper on the Table.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Imenda (Lukulu East): Mr Speaker, I would like to know the inter-relation between the Ministry of Education in relation to manpower development and foreign sponsorship.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, as indicated in our response, the Bursaries Committee manages scholarships on behalf of the nation with respect to manpower or human resource development. These scholarships are both those which are internally obtained and those that are externally acquired from our co-operating partners. That is the role of our Bursaries Committee.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Ms Mumbi (Munali): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister what criterion is used when giving bursaries to the students. I say so because I thought the students who should be given bursaries are those who are unable to pay the fees. However, we have seen in past where students who have both parents in meaningful employment, sometimes even in Government departments, are given scholarships. I would like to find out the criterion used.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, this is a transparent Government…

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Professor Lungwangwa: …and what we do in the Bursaries Committee is made public. Over the past few weeks, we have been advertising for bursaries and student loans in the papers. The hon. Member, who happens to be the hon. Member of Parliament for a constituency where the university is based, should take keen interest in reading what the advertisement is about and in that advertisement are the criteria for selecting students for the student loans and bursaries scheme.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe (Chadiza): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister why only people in towns rather than those in rural areas benefit from these bursaries.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Professor Lungwangwa:  Mr Speaker, there is no such thing as only urban areas benefiting. The Bursaries Committee is open on a competitive basis to all those that qualify to enter the universities. The records are there as to who is accessing the Bursaries Committee. We have a vulnerability criterion within the selection system which takes into account the rural as well as the disadvantaged status of the students, but on the basis of merit.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Kapata (Mandevu): Thank you Mr Speaker for catching your eye. I just want to find out from the hon. Minister how the Government intends to get back the loans that they are giving to students in form of bursaries.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, we are currently in the process of establishing a loans board which, when approved, will manage the collection of the loan repayments.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kambwili (Roan): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister what the Government is doing to make sure that those people who are sponsored to go and study outside through the Bursaries Committee come back and work for the Republic of Zambia rather than staying in the countries where they go to study.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, I wish the hon. Member gave us facts as to how many of those we have sponsored are staying in those countries. At the moment, we do not have that information. If the hon. Member cares, he could give us records of those who are on the Bursary Scheme and have not returning home.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Ntundu (Gwembe): Mr Speaker, there is a very strong rumour that some of these hon. Ministers’ sons and sons-in-law are on Government Bursary.


Mr Ntundu: I would like the Hon. Minister …

Mr Speaker: Order! Can the hon. Member for Gwembe rephrase his question? There are no rumours in this House. Please, rephrase your question.


Mr Ntundu: Mr Speaker, it is alleged that on the Bursary Scheme, there are sons –in-law and sons of some of these hon. Ministers in this House. Therefore, I would like the Hon. Minister to either confirm or bring to this House a list of those who are on bursary so that he is able to dispel this rumour that is going around.


Mr Ntundu: Sorry, the allegation.


Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, allegations or rumours, the hon. Member could do us right if he could qualify his question by being factual. Sir, we are managing a bursary as a loan scheme. If a citizen of this country qualifies for a student loan, and he is selected by the committee, I see no problem why that applicant cannot be given a loan.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr L. J. Mulenga (Kwacha): Mr Speaker, If the hon. Minister analyses policy direction and implementation, to what extent have the Zambian people benefited?


Mr Speaker: The Chair wishes to draw the hon. Member for Kwacha’s attention that his question is irrelevant.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


17. Mr Katuka (Mwinilunga East) asked the Minister of Home Affairs when permanent immigration posts would built in the following places in Mwinilunga East Constituency:

(i) Kamapanda Border Post in Chief Chibwika’s area; and
(ii) Kambimba in Chief Kakoma’s area.

The Deputy Minister of Home Affairs (Mr Bonshe): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that Kamapanda Border Post exists and is currently operational. The problem is that the border post lacks good infrastructure like an office and staff accommodation. However, the post is currently manned by one of officer.

As for Kambimba Border Post, the House may wish to know that it closed in February, 2003 due to lack of staff accommodation.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Katuka: Mr Speaker, is the Government aware of the revenue loss that is taking place if the borders are not manned considering the booming traffic and business in the Democratic Republic of Congo?

The Minister of Home Affairs (Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha): Mr Speaker, we are aware of the traffic that goes on in those two border areas and, indeed, the consequential revenue loss. Therefore, we have plans to ensure that these border posts operate normally arising out of whatever resources that shall be given to us by the Members of Parliament in the next budget.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, is it not practical to be ferrying an immigration officer everyday to the border to avoid the loss of revenue or encourage illegal immigrants rather than closing it on the basis of no accommodation?

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Speaker, in certain cases, there are facilities that allow the ferrying of immigration officers to man certain border posts where they feel that it is cheaper to do that. However, in cases where there is no facility for transportation, we have not done that.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}


18. Mr D. Mwila (Chipili) asked the Minister of Labour and Social Security:

(a) how many registered trade unions had failed to hold their biannual or quadrennial conferences;

(b) what reasons had been given for the failure to hold the conferences at (a) above; and

(c) what corrective measures the ministry had taken to redress the situation.

The Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Security (Mr Liato): Mr Speaker, according to the records available in the ministry, only two trade unions, out of forty-three, namely Federation of Free Trade Unions of Zambia and United House Domestic Workers Union, had failed to hold their biannual or quadrennial conferences by the time of  responding to this question.

The following have been the reasons for the failure to hold the conferences:

(i) Federation of Free Trade Unions of Zambia

(a) Alleged lack of funds to hold the conferences.

(ii) United House Domestic Workers Union

(b) The union has matters before the courts of law which have impacted adversely on their operations, including the holding of constitutional meetings.
The ministry has written to the affected unions and they have indicated their willingness to hold the constitutional meetings as soon as the problems highlighted in (b) above have been sorted out.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr D. Mwila: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister is aware that the audited accounts are approved by the quadrennial congress or the biannual congress. What is the ministry doing to ensure that the books are approved by those two conferences?

The Minister of Labour and Social Security (Mr Mukuma): Mr Speaker, the fact that these two unions have not held their quadrennial conferences does not mean that these audited accounts are also not being considered. This is why my ministry is pressuring these unions to hold the conferences as soon as possible.

At the moment, I know that the unions are taking advantage of the weaknesses in our laws. We have realised this as a ministry, and we will soon work out regulations which will require the unions to give notice if they are not in a position to hold the conferences.

At the expiry of that notice or notice of extension, we would like them to hold the meeting whether they like it or not. When we come up with such regulations, we hope that we will control this situation.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, through you, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether the union for domestic workers is viable and whether the employers, including himself, would allow his workers to go for such conferences.


Mr Mukuma: Mr Speaker, the fact that the union is still existing means that it is still viable. We are not in a position to tell them to disband because they are given the freedom to belong to any union. We are hoping that when these regulations come in, we shall be closing such unions because they will prove not to be actively viable.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister said that they are working on regulations. I would like to find out when these regulations will take effect because every time that is the answer he gives.

Mr Mukuma: Mr Speaker, the regulations concerning labour matters involve tripartite consultations. If, as a ministry, we were given the authority to make those regulations, I think we would have come up with regulations within a day. However, these regulations are already prepared and we will soon be calling a stakeholders’ meeting at which they will be discussed. Once that has been agreed upon, they will be effected.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kapeya (Mpika): Mr Speaker, would the hon. Minister confirm whether the introduction of plural unionism in Zambia has proved to be positive or on the negative? I am sure by now he has collected enough data.

Mr Mukuma: Mr Speaker, I suppose that the question means the proliferation of unions in each sector. This approach came as a result of the International Labour Organisation Convention which allows everybody to belong to any union of their choice. Therefore, people have decided to form unions even within the same organisation but, of course, we have come to prove that this proliferation of unions is not working to the advantage of the workers. It has now become personal. So, as a ministry, we are discussing with the union leaders and the workers themselves to show the disadvantages of this proliferation of unions. I believe that the facts are now being accepted by most of the union leaders. I am sure that it will not be too long before the unions start merging to provide the required services to the workers.

I thank you, Sir.


19. Mr Mwangala (Nalolo) asked the Minister of Finance and National Planning:

(a) when the 315 former Bank of Zambia employees who were retrenched in 1994 would be paid their retrenchment packages;

(b) whether the retrenched former Bank of Zambia employees at (a) above, who are now deceased, would be paid through their surviving families; and

(c) what factors led to the delay in paying out the packages at (a) above.

The Deputy Minister of Finance and National Planning (Mr Shakafuswa): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that contrary to the number mentioned in the Parliamentary Question, 573 and not 315 former members of staff were retrenched in 1994/95.

All retrenched staff were paid their retrenchment packages immediately upon separation with the bank on the basis of the agreed redundancy formula. However, some retrenched staff contested the amounts paid and took the matter to court. The court found in their favour and, without exception, all retrenched staff were subsequently paid additional packages in 2004 as ordered by the court.

Mr Speaker, in situations where retrenched staff died before receiving their retrenchment package, the same were paid to the appointed administrators of the estate.

Mr Speaker, the initial retrenchment package was paid immediately upon separation with the bank. The additional retrenchment packages were paid after the conclusion of the court process.

There were no delays in affecting payments. The apparent delay for the additional payments was due to the court process.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwangala: Mr Speaker, arising from the hon. Minister’s response, is he aware that the matter of payments is questionable because one of the victims, by the name of Mr Sifungasiyo, is currently living in the poorest state of affairs in Baroste Establishment? What sort of payment is the hon. Minister talking about because the victim is languishing in poverty?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, those who are currently in employment and those who leave employment have to decide what they want to do with their life whilst they are still working and still strong. This is because when they get their retrenchment packages, what they do with them, is their problem. If you get your retrenchment package and misuse it, thinking that you will get some more additional funds, it does not work out in life like that. So, we have to be responsible when we are working. Do not live life above your limits. Live within your means and invest your money for your children.

I thank you, Sir.


20. Mr Malama (Mfuwe) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing the measures the ministry had taken to ensure that uncompleted building structures in Lusaka were completed.

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Tetamashimba): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform this august House that my ministry is actually concerned about the condition of the uncompleted building structures not only in Lusaka, but in the whole country as well. In a quest to make Zambia clean and healthy, the ministry has directed all the councils to order all owners of the uncompleted structures to complete them within reasonable time.

Mr Speaker, all councils, including Lusaka City Council, have responded by writing to owners of uncompleted structures and copied to the Commissioner of Lands, to value the structures and commence re-entry procedures.

Mr Speaker, the directive has seen some developers making efforts to complete the same, while others are selling off their premises to capable developers.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Malama: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether the ministry has any plans to repossess the buildings which are not going to be completed, especially the one on Freedom Way where hanging bars are falling and killing innocent people.

The Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mrs Masebo): Mr Speaker, in our response we have indicated that we directed all local authorities to ensure that all owners, including the owner of the building that he is talking about, are urged to complete construction. Failure to do so will result in the enforcing of the Town and Country Planning Act which actually empowers the Government to repossess any building that is incomplete on account of failure by the owner.

Mr Speaker, some of my colleagues that have gone into town will agree that there is great effort, now, by the owners of the incomplete buildings to have them completed. It can clearly be seen along the 300-metre stretch on both sides of the Kafue-Makeni Road that there is an effort being put in to actually complete the buildings. They have them painted and so on and so forth. Indeed, there may be a few that are not complying and we have since written to the Ministry of Lands, requesting them to begin proceedings for re-entry. If, by the time the advertisements are put out, there is no improvement, those structures will be taken over by the Government and sold.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chanda (Kankoyo): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister if councils are taking interest in the buildings that are painted because what has been observed is that the paints that are being used are fading two days after the building has been painted.

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, I have taken note of that point which has been raised by the hon. Member. I did not realise that we have paints that fade out after two days. We will take the necessary measures.

I thank you, Sir.


21. Mr Ntundu (Gwembe) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a) how many fire tenders were currently owned by the Lusaka City Council; and

(b) what was the water capacity of the biggest and smallest fire tenders.

The Deputy Minister Local Government and Housing (Dr Kazonga): Mr Speaker, there are five fire tenders currently owned by Lusaka City Council. Out of the five, only three are in good running condition. The other two are defective but can be rehabilitated.

Regarding part (b) of the question, the water capacity of the biggest fire tender is 5,000 litres while the smallest is 1,000 litres.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Ntundu: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether, out of the fire tenders that he has mentioned that are operational, there is any that has the capacity to put out fire in a tall building such as Findeco House.

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, unfortunately, the fleet of fire tenders that the Lusaka City Council has at the moment has no capacity, really, to put out fires that would occur in a tall building such as Findeco or Indeco House. This is why you saw that the last time that the Shoprite building was on fire, despite the fire fighters being on site early, it really gave them a lot of trouble.

As a ministry, we have been trying very hard to see to it that our fire authorities in the country are assisted to purchase more fire fighting equipment. You will appreciate the fact that one ordinary fire tender, such as the ones that they have, is over K1 billion. When you look at the allocations, it is obviously a bit difficult. As a Government, we have to deliberately agree and decide the particular year to purchase this equipment.

However, as we are today, if a very tall building is on fire, it is very difficult for the firemen to go up and put out the fire, let alone if people are trapped in a building which is very high. If, for example, the lifts were on fire, it would be difficult for us to remove them using a ladder that would ordinarily be used in normal cases where you have the right equipment to assist rescue these people. These are some of the challenges that our ministry is facing and, indeed, the local authorities. The equipment that is required demands a lot of money. The budget for my ministry cannot even buy five fire tenders of the type that the hon. Member is requesting or asking about.

I thank you, Sir.


22. Mr Imasiku (Liuwa) asked the Minister of Labour and Social Security:

(a) how many institutions contributed to NAPSA;

(b) how many NAPSA members qualified to receive their terminal benefits from 2001 to 2006, year by year;

(c) how many NAPSA members at (b) above had not received their terminal benefits;

(d) what was the average lump sum a member in the high, middle and low income brackets received in the period above; and

(e) what was the average monthly pension for the category of members at (d) above.

Mr Liato: Mr Speaker, the response is as follows:

(a) there are currently 18,366 registered institutions contributing to NAPSA;

(b) NAPSA members eligible for terminal benefits year by year from 2001 to 2006 were:

Year 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006

Total 606 2,272 3,503 4,556 4,365 4,994

(c) NAPSA members at (b) that have not received terminal benefits were:

Year 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Total Cumulative

Total 7 18 66 157 290 337 875 

Mr Speaker, note that these are pending claims on account of missing contributions and beneficiaries’ lack of details.

(d) the amount of average lowest and highest lump sum paid were as follows:

Year      Lowest (K)       Highest (K)

2001       32,506            2,327,161

2002       29,295            4,184,547

2003          1,030          6,412,916

2004      15,067            10,379,054

2005      26,067            19,071,053

2006       40,056           36,974,705

Mr Speaker, you will note that the category of middle-income earners does not exist. There are only lowest and highest paid categories. You will also note that the minimum and maximum amounts for lump sum payment have been based on what is paid in Lusaka which is quite representative of all paying centres.

With regard to part (b), as you are aware, NAPSA was established in 2000 and, therefore, only started paying out pension in 2005. The following pensions have been paid out so far.

                2001   2002    2003    2004    2005          2006
Lowest      Nil       Nil        Nil         Nil    206,842     294,438

               2001   2002    2003    2004     2005         2006
Highest      Nil      Nil         Nil        Nil     556,146     972,915

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Imasiku: Mr Speaker, with the revelation by the hon. Minister that some members get a lump sum of K15,000 after working for so many years, could he confirm that this social security scheme is worth supporting by the people who are contributing?

 Mr Mukuma: Mr Speaker, the important thing that we need to note is that NAPSA was just established in 2000. Therefore, the payments that were made were out of the contributions. Those who received a lump sum, it was from the time they joined NAPSA to the time the payments were made. For those who got K15,000, probably, they were those who pay very little in contributions and at the same time the period within which they were required to be paid was also short. That is why you see that the amount of lump sum payment is very small at the beginning and it is gradually becoming bigger as the years of the establishment of NAPSA increases. That explains why some figures are low.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, over 2000 ex-RAMCOZ employees have not been paid their NAPSA contributions due to the fact that the Government, at the time of liquidation, took over the responsibility of remitting the contributions from the employees to NAPSA. Since that has not been done, could I find out from the hon. Minister when the Government will remit this payment to NAPSA so that NAPSA can pay the ex-RAMCOZ employees in Luanshya.

Mr Mukuma: Mr Speaker, the issues of transfer from one organisation to another are subject to reconciliation. If no payments have been effected, it means negotiations and reconciliations are still going on, but once this process is done, I am sure payments will be made.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kapeya: Mr Speaker, under the current NAPSA policy, when a contributing member who has no spouse or child passes away, his/her contributions cannot be surrendered to the surviving parents, but are surrendered to the State. When will this policy be reviewed so that the contributions are given to the dead contributing member’s parents?

Mr Mukuma: Mr Speaker, most of these payments that we are looking at this afternoon are payments which are made to beneficiaries and not necessarily to the owners or the people were working, and the payments to these beneficiaries are recognised in NAPSA.

I thank you, Sir.


23. Mr Mukanga asked the Minister of Education:

(a) who was responsible for the maintenance of teachers’ houses in the following schools in Mufulira:

(i) Mufulira High School;
(ii) Mutamba Basic School; and
(iii) Central Basic School;

(b) how the maintenance of the houses at (a) above was done; and 
(c) when the houses were last maintained.

Mr Sinyinda: Mr Speaker, the responsibility of maintaining teachers’ houses is done through the Educational Boards. In the case of Mutamba and Central Basic schools, maintenance is done by the District Education Board whereas for Mufulira High School, maintenance is done by the High School Board.

The maintenance of the teachers’ houses is done as need arises. So, it is a continuous process.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, from the answer that the hon. Minister has given, I would like to …

Mr Tetamashimba: On a point of order, Sir!

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Tetamashimba: Mr Speaker, I thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to raise this Constitutional point of order.

Mr Speaker, in the handbook that you gave your hon. Members of Parliament on the Constitution of the Republic of Zambia, on page 57, under Article 89, the Constitution states and I quote:

“The Speaker of the National Assembly, before assuming the duties of his office and every Member of the National Assembly, before taking his seat thereon shall take and subscribe before the National Assembly to the Oath of Allegiance”.

Mr Speaker in the same handbook that you gave the hon. Members of Parliament; and before I can quote the next Article, I want to go to Act No. 19 of 2007 which is the National Constitutional Conference Act, which was passed in this House and was assented to by His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia on 31st August, 2007. Under Clause 4, it states and I quote:

“The Conference shall consist of the following members who shall be appointed by the Secretary to the Cabinet”.

And that (a), I want to quote:

 “The members shall be all Members of the National Assembly”.

However, coming to the Constitution at page 48 under Article 71(2), I want to quote, and it states as follows:

“A Member of the National Assembly shall vacate his seat in the Assembly if he acts contrary to the Code of Conduct prescribed by an Act of Parliament”.

Mr Speaker, the Members of Parliament in this House before August, 2007 passed a law and unanimously agreed. There was no division.

Hon. PF Members: Aah!

Mr Tetamashimba: The Members of Parliament passed this law and gave upon themselves an agreement that they would abide by what they decide, and they had to swear before it.

Mr Speaker, we have many political parties in this House. In particular, we have the Patriotic Front, which originally had forty-three hon. Members of Parliament, if I am not mistaken. However, one passed on and there remained forty-two. Out of these forty-two hon. Members of Parliament, twenty-six of them abided by not only the Constitution, but by what they had passed in this House.

Hon Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Tetamashimba: Mr Speaker, fifteen of them decided to go contrary to their oath of allegiance and the law that they passed for themselves. Are the hon. Members of Parliament from the PF, who decided not to attend the NCC which they decided in this House, in order to be coming to this House and start making laws which they still will not abide by without complying with the Constitutional provision …


Mr Tetamashimba: … which states that when you are not happy with the law that you make, you must vacate your seat in Parliament?

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Tetamashimba: Mr Speaker, this House deserves to be respected with its laws. Are those hon. Members of Parliament in order to continuously not attend the NCC but, meanwhile, come to Parliament and back other laws which they will not abide by? I need your serious ruling.


Mr Speaker: Order! The point of order which is being raised by the hon. Deputy Minister in the Ministry of Local Government and Housing appears to have been very well researched and, clearly, very popular from the applause I have heard around the House.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: However, several rulings have been made in this House by my predecessors and I, that there are two very important documents which the hon. Members should avoid quoting in this House. Firstly, are collectively religious books, an example being the Bible. I could have time to explain why. Secondly, is the Republican Constitution. If I had time, I would also attempt to explain why. However, if you want to know why, you can ask the legal minds. I do not know how many they are, but if I could ask to see how many lawyers there are here, you would be surprised. You, again, would be surprised to know that there will be as many interpretations of any article in the Constitution as there are lawyers in this House …


Mr Speaker: … or elsewhere. I believe the same with the Bible. No one can explain. Therefore, whereas this House did, in fact, pass the Constitution of the Republic of Zambia. The honour and privilege to interpret the meanings of the article or articles therein is left to the courts. You then can guess what I am aiming at.

Secondly, the other way of dealing with this issue is for the Chair to conclude because it knows that each of the hon. Members of this House is very wise and very experienced. Therefore, each one of the wise and experienced hon. Members of Parliament is to advise those of your hon. Colleagues who have decided to stay away from the NCC. Advise them that there is merit in the short, mid and long terms for changing minds and that they go and take up their vacant seats.


Mr Speaker: The vacancies are still there.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: They can take up their vacant seats and participate in that process. All of you, as you already know, except the Chair, are Members of the NCC. The Chair will be waiting for you here …


Mr Speaker: … to assist you enact the Draft Constitution that you would have agreed upon elsewhere. That would be the ruling and the guidance I would give to, as I was saying, that very well researched point of order by the hon. Deputy Minister in the Ministry of Local Government and Housing.

I will not pre-empt other consultations I hear are taking place on this matter. I shall leave those consultations to those who are dealing with them. Therefore, for the time being, I believe the quorum is formed at the NCC. Carry on a good job …

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker:  … and come back here and brief me …

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: … about the good job you are doing.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: The hon. Member for Kantanshi, I believe, was raising a supplementary question?

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister stated in his reply that there was a continuous process of maintenance taking place. I would like to find out how effective the maintenance is when there are houses at Mufulira High School Teachers’ Compound whose cracks are so big that you can shake hands with a person passing outside the House.


Mr Sinyinda: Mr Speaker, I would like to share with my colleague, and I hope he is not referring to the rehabilitation of Mufulira High School. He asked us to clarify who was responsible for the maintenance works at some of the schools he mentioned in Mufulira.

First of all, there is a difference between maintenance and rehabilitation. Maintenance is, for example, repairing or replacing a broken window pane or a tap.

However, when you talk about rehabilitation, you are painting or rebuilding the whole or part of the school. I would like to inform him that if he was talking about rehabilitation works, as the Ministry of Education, we are in the process of rehabilitating all the schools as soon as funds are made available.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister stated that high school boards maintain their houses. More often than not, people who live in the houses at certain schools do not teach at those particular schools. Is it not asking for too much from a particular school, through the money that they collect from pupils, to maintain the houses that are occupied not only by their own teachers, but teachers from other schools?

Mr Sinyinda: Mr Speaker, I am not very sure about the question being asked by the hon. Member. However, if he is talking about houses that belong to our various schools, it is the policy of this Government, through the Ministry of Education, to maintain our school infrastructure all the times when need arises.

However, if he is talking about houses that do not belong to the Ministry of Education, then I am not sure about that, but I can assure him that it is our policy to maintain all the school infrastructure, that is, both houses and classrooms.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}


24. Mr D. Mwila (Chipili) asked the Vice-President whether there were any plans to transfer the issuance of work permits from the Ministry of Home Affairs to the Ministry of Labour and Social Security.

The Deputy Minister in the Vice-President’s Office (Mr Malwa): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that there are no immediate plans to transfer the issuance of work permits from the Ministry of Home Affairs to the Ministry of Labour and Social Security.

Sir, the House may, further, wish to know that the issue of work permits borders on security matters of the country. In fact, the Ministry of Labour and Social Security is also represented on the committee that scrutinises and issues the work permits to persons that have been cleared by the various wings of security. Some of them are within the Ministry of Home Affairs.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr D. Mwila: Mr Speaker, the Government gives work permits to bricklayers and plumbers, especially at Chambishi Copper Smelter. I would like to find out from His Honour the Vice-President when this will be stopped because people have been complaining that they are giving work permits to bricklayers and plumbers when such jobs can be done by Zambians.

Mr Malwa: Mr Speaker, as I alluded to earlier, the issues of work permits are not done by one ministry or one person. There is a committee that sits to scrutinise the issue of work permits and recommend accordingly.

I thank you, Sir.


25. Mr Malama asked the Minister of Works and Supply when a ring road would be constructed in Lusaka.

The Deputy Minister of Works and Supply (Mr Ndalamei): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that the Government, through the Ministry of Local Government and Housing, has engaged a consultant with assistance from the Japanese Government through the Japanese International Co-operation Agency (JICA), to look at all the previous master plans for Lusaka City, including a review of why they were not implemented, and finally come up with a new master plan for Lusaka City.

The consultants commenced the study last year, in 2007, and have been carrying out surveys, problem identification, analysis and formation of a future transport system. The consultant is scheduled to complete the study in December 2008. The study will take long because it has several components, including general urban planning, the environment, water supply and sewerage system.

On completion of the study, JICA will then target funding for needy areas, including ring roads. Therefore, the ring road construction shall only start after the completion of the study.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Malama: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister aware that traffic congestion in the city has contributed to workers reporting late for work? If he is aware, what immediate plans has the ministry put in place to arrest the situation?

Mr Ndalamei: Mr Speaker, the Government is aware and that is why we have engaged a consultant who is conducting feasibility studies. After completing the study, we will construct the ring road and decongest the town centre.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott (Lusaka Central): Mr Speaker, I wonder if the hon. Minister would care to make an undertaking that before and when new roads are constructed in Lusaka, those that already exist are made passable. I refer, particularly, to the Nyumba Yanga, Leopards Hill, Woodlands B and Chalala areas.

Mr Ndalamei: Mr Speaker, maintenance of local roads is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Local Government and Housing and since he is a councillor, he can consult the council to plan for the roads.

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Speaker: Order!

Mr Lubinda (Kabwata): Mr Speaker, in the 2006 Budget, an amount of K5,450 billion was allocated to open one new road to pass through Kamwala South to link with Kafue Road in Lilayi and K450 million was meant to tar the short ring road that runs between Kamwala Trading Area and Kafue Road. Could the hon. Minister explain why the ministry did not use that money to, at least, open up those two roads which were budgeted for in this Parliament?

Mr Ndalamei: Mr Speaker, a budget is an estimate, thus the funds were not released.

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Zulu (Bwana Mkubwa): Mr Speaker, it can take a patient seven hours from Kanyama to the University Teaching Hospital. I would like to find out from the hon. Minister what has happened to the great work plan for Lusaka?

Mr Ndalamei: Mr Speaker, that plan was produced in 1966 when the city was still small. As we have said, consultants are working on the issue. Once they complete the consultancy, plans will be put in place and the congestion will be reduced.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: Mr Speaker, would the hon. Minister recognise that it is the hallmark of inefficient and non-performing organisations that, when faced with a serious problem, they revert to long studies for their consultations. Will he also accept that the question of congestion in Lusaka is costing this economy huge amounts of money?

The Minister of Works and Supply (Mr Simbao): Mr Speaker, thank you for that good question. First of all, it is important to understand that the economy has performed very well.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Simbao: I think in the last five years or so, we have had something like five or six times the number of vehicles that were in this town. This means that there should be a change of everything. This change of everything is what is happening now. The Japanese are working with local government to re-look at the design of the roads in this town.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, getting recycled vehicles into the city is not a sign of an improved economy.


Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out if the hon. Minister is aware that the plan which Lusaka had before was the best and, if possible, if they can refer to that plan because as it is…

Mr Shakafuswa: On a point of order, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, I need your serious ruling. The hon. Member is trying to mislead this House that for people who can afford second hand cars, their economy has not improved. Therefore, is she in order to assume that the economy is going down when people who could not afford cars and would walk to their work places are, today, able to afford cars which they refuel and service? Is she in order to say that this does not show an increase in the economic activities? She is not supposed to come and give us fake economic theories in this House.

Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member for Munali was expressing an opinion to which the hon. Deputy Minister of Finance and National Planning has answered by way of that point of order. The hon. Member for Munali may continue.

Ms Mumbi: Mr Speaker, has the ministry got any plans of combining the old plans which Lusaka City had and the new ones because I feel that is the best way? For example, the old planners had a vision. On the famous Chila Road, we have a situation where people have encroached on the land which was supposed to be used as a road after the decommissioning of City Airport.

Mr Simbao: Mr Speaker, I think in answering Question 25, the hon. Deputy Minister did not make it very clear to the hon. Member of Parliament for Munali. I am saying so because the question she is asking was answered in the Written Answer. It was mentioned that the team looking at the re-planning of the roads in Lusaka is looking at everything that was there before. They are also looking at the reasons these plans did not work before we come up with the final plan. I do not know what else to say. Therefore, they will look into our concerns before they decide whether that is the best or they can do better than that.

I thank you, Sir.




(Debate resumed)

Mr Mooya (Moomba): Mr Speaker, thank you for giving me this chance to debate the Motion on the Floor. I have only two issues to discuss and these are the Parliamentary constituency offices and infrastructure development.

Sir, on the Parliamentary constituency offices, I would like to confirm that the office in my constituency is not yet established. The problem is that my constituency is in the rural area, far from the Boma. Now, establishing this office in Monze town would disadvantage my people because they will have to walk about twenty kilometres to get to the office. Therefore, I think some of these rural constituencies need special consideration in terms of office construction. I am asking that my constituency should have special consideration. The funds should be found in order to build an office in my constituency. 

Sir, secondly, let me come to infrastructure development. I think we have problems here. Although the President said that we are doing well, I feel we could do better than that because there are a number of problems there. For example, there is the late completion of GRZ-funded projects. We all know the story and we know how much money we have lost. We have lost trillions and trillions as a result of late completion of GRZ funded projects. If only we could improve on this one then things would be fine.

Mr Speaker, let me give examples that are very familiar. There is the Choma/Namwala Road which was supposed to take about two and half years but, now, it is about eight years.

Major Chizhyuka: No, forty-three!

Mr Mooya: Mr Speaker, this project has taken forty-three years. When it started, the cost was about K25 billion and I think, by now, it has shot up to K40 billion. The road is only done from Namwala to Chitongo. What is remaining is from Chitongo to Choma which is half way. You can imagine that we have already spent K40 billion on that road. I would not be surprised if this shot up to K80 billion or even K100 billion. This is an example of what I said earlier, that we should improve on projects. Things are not alright with infrastructure development.

Mr Speaker, other examples are the Mutanda/Zambezi/Chavuma Road, the Mongu/ Kalabo Road, the Kasama/Luwingu Road, the Nchelenge/Chienge Road and the Chembe Bridge, which we were told would be completed in March this year, but that has been shifted to September, and I know that ,come September, we will hear another story.

Mr Speaker, the Chirundu Border facilities are terrible. We are six years behind schedule. They should have been completed in 2002. The Japanese came and completed the bridge at one time. We were supposed to do the same at the same time in 2002, but we are still handling it. Zimbabwe has finished it. Therefore, let us improve on this one. We need to do some homework on the Bottom Road, just to mention a few projects. 

Now, under this infrastructure, there is the issue of local debt. The Government owes billions of kwacha to local contractors. The amount is K480 billion, but the Government says it is K380 billion and the private sector is saying it is K 480 billion. Nevertheless, whichever it is, that is a substantial amount of money. Let us dismantle this debt so that we can help our contractors in capacity building.

I have seen in the Speech by His Excellency the President that he mentioned capacity issues and he is very worried about the capacity of our contractors. This is one way of overcoming this problem. If we can dismantle this debt and I am suggesting the earlier we do so the better. I am suggesting a time frame of two years starting 2008 and ending next year December, 2009.

Mr Speaker, another issue in the Speech has to do with workmanship and a partnership was suggested in the Presidential Speech in order to overcome poor workmanship. This was thrown to the National Council for Construction (NCC). Sir, I am afraid that this is a very serious and important issue which is supposed to be handled by the Government and not the NCC. It is a policy issue and requires encouraging these foreign contractors to partner with our local contractors and the NCC cannot do that. The Government has the political muscle to come to the rescue of the NCC.

Under infrastructure development, I want to come to the issue of purchased earth moving equipment and necessary spare parts for road making and maintenance. Here, I am really confused. My mind is divided because it is not very clear. Let the Government come again to clear this issue regarding the custody of this equipment. We were told that a loan of US$39million from the Chinese Government was procured. Now, we are wondering who is going to keep this equipment and repair it. Is this one way of establishing road camps again? Are we re-introducing false accounts? For all these questions, the Government should explain and shed more light on this issue.

Who is going to be in charge of this? Is the private sector involved or is it just the public sector? We want the Government to come up very clearly on these issues because we could have better suggestions to improve on this. It seems that there is something hidden here and I am requesting the Government to shed more light on this issue.

Mr Speaker, let me come to the expansion of aviation infrastructure. I am surprised that up to now, there is no programme for the Lilayi Airport. It was constructed in the late 1970s and abandoned. A lot of money was spent on that airport. Lilayi is very near. From Chilenje it is about seven kilometres. In addition to this, the private sector is interested in completing that airport. Therefore, let this airport be on the agenda of the Government.

Finally, there was mention of the Public/ Private Partnership (PPP) in order to assist the Government in funding projects. It is mentioned in the Presidential Speech that other countries have embraced this and succeeded. I think that the factor we still have to consider –Zambia, I think we all know, has a lot of corruption…

Hon Government Members interjected.

Mr Mooya: Yes, poverty levels are too high. Now, if you leave this in the hands of the private sector and you know that the private sector is after money. You take up a road and bring it under PPP, then whoever uses that road will pay. My mind is divided over PPP. We have to be very cautious. I hear there is a Bill coming but we will have to see what is there in the Bill.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker: Before debate continues, I just want to guide the House that you are very free to debate the issue of constituency offices. Why? Because it was mentioned in the Speech from the Throne as we say. However, as you debate this issue, please, remember that your own Committee on Reforms and Modernisation, late last year, produced a report which was debated here and adopted by yourselves. Pull out that report and refresh your memories on what was written with regard to the establishment of constituency offices.

You will recall, without spoon feeding you, that this issue is in two phases. Phase 1 is the rental approach working with the very generous co-operation of the hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing who would be able to allocate space for your offices.

Secondly, in that report, you will find that Phase 2 is the one which deals with the construction of offices in your respective constituencies.

In both cases, you were and are still urged to be the implementers of this project. This is not where you expect an Action Taken Report from the Executive. You are all the action takers. Do not blame anybody if there is no office in your constituency.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Perform that part. You are the implementer, together with your constituents in your respective places to decide where this office should be sited. However, remember that Phase 1 is a shortcut where there may be access as quickly as possible. Phase 2 deals with construction at a place or location of the choice the people you represent.

Pull out that report and you will see what is in there for you.

Mr Mabenga (Mulobezi): Mr Speaker, thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak on the President’s Opening Speech of Parliament this year.

Before I make my contributions to the speech, I want to congratulate the mover and the seconder of this Motion. I would also like to congratulate you, Sir, and your entire staff, as well as the Clerk and her assistants for a job well done last year. I also wish to congratulate His Honour the Vice-President for having carried this House so well in the past year.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: I do not want to forget to congratulate ourselves, as Members of Parliament, for having done so well in the previous year. Except ….


Mr Mabenga: I will stop there.


Mr Mabenga: Mr Speaker, I have read …

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours.

Mr Mabenga: Madam Speaker, before business was suspended, I was actually going through my salutations.

I was also saying that I want to pay tribute to my two neighbours sitting besides me and those sitting in front of me, for keeping me very warm here.


Mr Mabenga: Madam Speaker, anybody who has read through the President’s Speech will understand that the President is now ticking, on the checklist, the things that he promised to do when he came into power.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: Madam Speaker, you will recall that the President talked about the Constitution, which he mentioned when he came into office in 2002. That is one item he has ticked on his checklist. In this vein, therefore, I want to take this special opportunity to congratulate Hon. Chifumu Banda, Hon. Musokotwane and Hon. Sinyangwe for being given the responsibility of leading us in that very important exercise at Mulungushi International Conference Centre.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: Madam Speaker, what is contained in that gathering there is seriousness. There is seriousness in that gathering there because people debate matters which they know are going to be good for this country. Therefore, we need to give a pat on the back of the people that are taking part in the NCC.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: Madam Speaker, people are committed there. They ensure that they sit until very late. Old people deliberately come there and sit until it is quite late just to see what is happening. I remember, last time, when we adjourned at about mid night, old people and everybody made sure that the purpose of going there was achieved to benefit the people of Zambia. Therefore, that is one item on the President’s checklist that he is doing now and he has done very well. This is because we are now working on the Constitution and, therefore, we are going to get a good Constitution. This is a gift he is going to give to this country before he leaves office.

Madam Speaker, another very important thing that the President has always talked about is the media. It is true that the media fraternity in this country has actually wanted to have a Bill brought to this House. This is the Freedom of Information Bill. We are now publicly talking about it because the President mentioned that the Freedom of Information Bill is coming to this House so that the people in the media fraternity can have an opportunity to function the way we think could be best for them. Is this not what a leader should do, to keep his word by ticking one by one the things that he put on his agenda when he came into office? I believe that is the most important thing that people can ever refer to.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear! Guy Scott.

Mr Mabenga: Madam Speaker, we do know very well the many developments in media coverage that have been put in place. The television transmitters, the radio reception and the newspapers are now coming into place, especially in local languages and so on.

Madam Speaker, the most important thing is the area where we have legislation which is going to classify materials for public viewing and checking on proliferation of illegal video houses. Now, what could come out from these houses are pornographic materials. So, it is very good that there is law coming which is going to curb this very unfortunate thing. This is because we need every good moral to be put in the minds of our young people and every citizen in this country. This is another thing that the President said he was going to ensure that he puts in place and this law is coming into force. I am very sure we will be able to come and enhance the much-needed moral behaviour that we want to see happen in this country.

Madam Speaker, let me talk about the economic front. We have known and we know that we ourselves, in this same House, passed the Citizen’s Economic Empowerment Act. We do know that Zambians now have an opportunity to be able to further their own economic standing in this country, let alone on the continent. Now, this is important because we will not have a Zambian wanting to get employment from other people, but instead a Zambian will now be able to employ other people. Therefore, people will come forth to get employment from them and in that setting the Zambians will be able to support their own living standards.

Madam Speaker, this is a great time to also note that although foreign countries are encouraged to come and invest in this country, we noticed from the President’s Speech here that he is saying that these companies should only be involved in share ownership, meaning that foreign investors have shares as well as the Zambians. In that way, we will be able to move instead of the resources going outside this country. So, that is very important. It also reveals that there is going to be participation in management positions. This has been lacking for quite sometime now and there have been a lot of complaints from the mines, for example, over management positions. I am glad that this is going to be changed so that the Zambians can also occupy positions which actually tally with the qualifications that they have.

Madam Speaker, let me talk about the people in the rural areas such as, for example,  Kabompo, Zambezi, …

Professor Lungwangwa crossed the Floor.

Mr Speaker: Order!

Mr Mabenga: … Solwezi East, Lukulu, Mongu and Luangwa Valley. Rural people are gratified to learn that the President is keeping his words by ensuring that the explorations that have been carried out will be to the benefit of the people in those areas.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: It is exciting, Madam Speaker. I was speaking to people in Lukulu, Mongu and Zambezi on the phone and they were saying this is why we voted for the MMD and Mwanawasa.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: This is because we knew things were going to happen and now things are happening. Employment will be there.

Hon. Opposition Member interjected.

Mr Mabenga: My debate, Madam Speaker, is not scruffy. So, I do not want scruffy people to come in.

Hon. Government Member: Clumsy.

Mr Mabenga: Oh! Clumsy! That is the word.

Hon. Government Member: It is the same.

Mr Mabenga: It is the same, yes.

Madam Speaker, what I am emphasising, here, is that there is great need to continue developing the rural areas. It is also good to see that the President is keeping his word. The President went to Kabompo when he heard the chiefs were complaining about fires. This is because he knew that there was something.

So, he sent people there to go and explore and they found that there was oil, gas and all these things. This is in parts of the Western Province as well as the Eastern Province. Is it not gratifying that the rural areas are now being recognised even more? What are my fellow hon. Members from the rural areas saying?

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: Madam Speaker, the education standards in this country are improving by the day. The President said that apart from the Government putting in and improving the education standards, local initiatives should come on board. And local initiatives have come on board.

Mr Kambwili: Community schools naimwe.

Mr Mabenga: Let me now tell you things. It is not just community schools. This hon. Minister here (pointing at Hon. Lungwangwa), before he became a hon. Minister - and I want to tell that I know the history of what I am going to talk about - brought the initiative of setting up a university, which is Zambezi River Basin University. It is on the drawing board …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: … with a number of local Zambian scholars that have come together. These are the local initiatives that the President is encouraging.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: Apart from that, we have the Zambia Open University here in Lusaka. Some colleagues in here have taught there. People are learning there and so on and so forth. This university was actually launched by His Excellency the President himself in 2005. This is because he is encouraging local initiative. This way, he is empowering Zambians. It is important that anybody who reads, sees and hears acknowledges the good that the President and his Government are doing for the country.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: When the President launched the Zambia Open University on 26th March, 2005 at Mulungushi International Conference Centre here (pointing in the direction of the conference centre), there was a student population of only 369. Today, there are 5,000 students there.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: It is not a joke. This is Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) at work …

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: … encouraging the people to empower themselves. Looking at the labour force of the university, there are about seven to nine professors there and not just lecturers with first or second degrees.

Dr Puma: Zambians.

Mr Mabenga: Yes, Zambians that are managing that institution. We also have 107 part-time Zambian staff, some of whom come from this House.

Madam Speaker, it is very important that we acknowledge the efforts of a man who has said that he wants to leave a legacy where he will leave traces of development and no one will be able to hinder that because …

Dr Scott: Traces.

Mr Mabenga: Yes, traces are there. If Guy Scott does not know what traces are then I do not know what language he was taught. He is only white by skin …



Mr Mabenga: That is my friend, and you can never be my friend …

The Deputy Speaker: Order! Speak through the Chair.

Mr Mabenga: Madam Speaker, I am trying to tell that young man to keep quiet because he is not part of this issue …

Mr Kambwili: Who are you to tell me to keep quiet?


Mr Mabenga: What I am trying to say is that local initiatives have been encouraged by the President and the Government because it is through local initiatives that people will be able to get empowered economically. These are good men and women that I have referred to and there are many more. In here, we have people that are in technical education and the hospitality industry like my younger brother, the hon. Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources, and there is also the hon. Minister for Northern Province and a few others. Even people like Hon. Matongo are happy that they are empowered economically and I know how strong he is.

Madam Speaker, my only concern is when the Government, for example, gives responsibility to Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs). I am worried because of the food that was taken to Mulobezi Constituency and Sesheke District, and the responsibility was given to Zambia Red Cross to distribute the food, by the Disaster Management and Mitigation (DMMU), but up to now the food has not reached these far flung places.

Ms Mumbi: Tell them.

Mr Mabenga:  It is not the Government’s fault because it has done its part …

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Mabenga: The Government has invited people to come and participate in the development process. It has given money to NGOs to distribute the food but they are not doing so. This is not good enough. Let people who are partners in development to, please, do the best for the country because they are not doing this for themselves. That is very important. I am also glad that after a lot of complaints and checks on the Simungoma-Mulobezi Road, the contractor has been told to stop doing shoddy work and that a better contractor will be there. I would like to say ‘congratulations’ to the hon. Minister of Works and Supply.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mabenga: This is what we need to see happening. People must not be allowed to do shoddy work but to do the best because this country needs to move forward. This is the wish of the President, Dr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC.

I thank you, Madam.

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

Mr Chimbaka (Bahati): Madam Speaker, I am humbled for catching your eye. However, I want to add to the sense that people have displayed on the Floor of this House in contributing to a very important Motion which is the President’s Address to the Second Session of Tenth National Assembly.

Madam Speaker, I will selectively debate some issues knowing that there are more experts on other issues. One of the issues that I want to address this afternoon is Constitutionalism. The people of Zambia have for a long time been crying for a Constitution of their own approval.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Ever since 1959, when the then British Prime Minister appointed the Monkton Commission to try and assess the viability and acceptability of the Federal Constitution, there were people in Northern Rhodesia, then, who were referred to as nationalists who actually expressed divergent views …

Dr Chishimba: People like Kapwepwe.

Mr Chimbaka: … because they were very unsettled and uncertain that the Monkton Commission would come up with a constitution that was going to liberate Northern Rhodesia, which is Zambia today. Alas, what happened? The people that sat therein came up with a constitution that approved universal suffrage for the people of Northern Rhodesia, a constitution that ushered in the independence we are talking about today.

I believe that the NCC sitting this time around is approved and being attended to by many Zambians of goodwill and well meaning who have expressed and shown magnanimity, risen above partisan politics, have the interest of Zambia at heart, true patriots and are going to come up with a constitution that will be accepted by all.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Madam Speaker, I also want to thank and pay tribute to President Mwanawasa, SC. Ever since I started following politics in this nation, there have come Presidents, and have gone Presidents.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Many of them legislated constitutions partially, but only President Mwanawasa, SC, without fear or favour - and I believe that the people out there listening to this debate will agree with me that it is only President Mwanawasa, this time around, who has constituted a very well represented forum where the people of Zambia are sitting to try and search for the future of Zambia in order to avoid conflicts and atrocities like in other countries where these have happened because of bad constitutions.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: They have constitutions that have brought in divisions. They are tribal and not acceptable by all.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Therefore, there is need for me to say hats off to the President because he has lived up to his hopes. Not only that - I have been following political developments in Zambia. When he came to power in 2001, the petitions and cause of hatred were as a result of the Constitution, which robbed the Zambians and the party that won elections to the disappointment of those people who wanted change. In some quarters, people demonstrated and some of them, today, are facing the same courts for expressing their disappointment over the Constitution because they wanted change.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: This is the change that Dr Mwanawasa has come to put in. Not only that; he interested me when, for the first time in 2003, he realised that there was much tension in the land, what did he do? He called for an indaba. In case some of you have forgotten, the purpose of the indaba was to harmonise Zambians, bring them together as one family and chart the way forward, and that was settled.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: The resolutions of indaba, for those who research much or those that have done administration, are what we are seeing in the Public Service Reform Programme (PSRP) being implemented by the Civil Service. As a Christian and an elder, I want to say that there is need to tell the truth without fear or favour. I have to express my mind and I have the right and freedom to do so on the Floor of this House.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Madam Speaker, I want to say this that the well meaning people of Zambia, I am sure, are waiting for that document, the document that shall stand the test of time.

Madam Speaker, you come from a place where you and I originate and we are very rich in our language, especially idiomatic language. One of the idioms in Bemba says ‘Kolwe ashilabengwa, enda naponona. (When a person has not experienced trouble, he thinks life is easy and peace is taken for granted.)


Mr Chimbaka: When somebody experiences trouble, that is when he realises that there are people who run away, staying hungry, missing parents and children in the forests of this country.


Mr Chimbaka: Do not mind. Some of these people speaking have no traceable villages and I do not mind that. They have no families to look after.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Madam Speaker, I am a person who originates from a well-known place. I am a son of a warrior, a leader of the Ushi people from Kola with twenty-nine chiefs. I have my younger brothers who are like me with traceable origin. Mwansa Mbulakulima, Musosha and everybody here can agree with me that I have traceable roots. I am not a stranger in this nation.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Madam Speaker, concerning Public Service Management, I have aged in this country and I am now 56 years old, having served the Republic of Zambia for 33 years; as a school manager for 10 years; as a leader of one of the greatest unions in Zambia - the Zambia National Union of Teachers – in the post of Deputy of National Secretary, Finance and Administration. I am one of the people who have worked as a Provincial Chairman for many years, in the Permanent Human Rights Commission. Those who are in doubt can go and research. I am one of the longest serving Board Chairpersons of Mansa Teachers Training College. For people to vote for me is not a joke. They know what is here and who I am.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Madam Speaker, concerning the …

Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! One appreciates the encouragement that the House is showering on the speaker on the Floor. However, the Chair would like to have an opportunity to also listen and get everything that the hon. Member is debating. Can we give him an opportunity.

May you, please, continue.

Mr Chimbaka: Madam Speaker, on Public Service Management, it is very important that as an experienced civil servant and having sat on the negotiating table for members of the Civil Service, based on the expertise and experience I acquired therein, I wish to advise strongly that if we are to develop as a country, we need to appreciate the Civil Service. Madam, this is a straight forward, clear and simple.

Botswana has a very strong Civil Service and that is the reason many Zambians opted to go and work in Botswana. The magic is simple. What is there in Botswana? First and foremost, there is deliberate government policy which makes it very comfortable for a Zambian teacher of nurse to go to Botswana and get a car or a house tomorrow. Hon. Professor Fashion Phiri can agree with me and that is what we desire.

I hope that the President is well articulated on that issue. May passionate plea and appeal is that we should emulate countries like Namibia and Botswana. If we do that even today, all the civil servants are going to be happy for they will be motivated. All they desire is good accommodation and a living wage. All these corruption issues will go away because they shall appreciate that the Government is a caring government. I hope that when they come to negotiate, and with the President’s support in his Address to this House, they will be given something that will make them appreciate their being. Once we do that, I see Zambia excelling to greater heights and that is the solution.

As head and school manager, I tried hard and my teachers will confirm that I had no problems with teachers. What did I do or what was the magic? I simply phoned the Bank Manager and said, “Can you give me a loan? Grants will come.” Every month, on the 16th,  I gave all my teachers K50,000 to go and buy what they wanted.

I made no profit, but when I commanded they listened. Why? It is because I cared for them. Let us emulate such examples. It is simple and straight forward. With new monies coming from the mineral royalties, we want to see people happy. After all, when people and the civil service are happy, they will deliver, and deliver effectively.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Madam Speaker, there is one thing I want to talk about again. You see, duplicity is quite destructive in our society. I remember, once upon a time, because of borrowed governance and administrative systems, there existed a Central Board of Health here in Zambia. If I questioned- what development did the Central Board of Health bring to Zambia, apart from the retrogression in hospitals? What development? There was none. If there was, it was negligible. It cannot be noticeable.

You see, the same is applying to the Roads Department. The Ministry of Works and Supply is well meant. There was a lot of money given to this ministry last year. Going to the budget, very little has been done. Nonetheless, I have always seen members of the RDA drive very fancy vehicles. I have tried to plead with some of these people. What is wrong with you guys?


Mr Chimbaka: The money is there and this is the budget. Where is the problem?

Hon. Member interjected.

Mr Chimbaka: Yes.


Mr Chimbaka: Madam Speaker, some Zambians shall regret, even in death, that even if they lived, they lived for destruction. The RDA agents who are getting more money are engaged in pleasure and in luxurious movement at the expense of the development of Zambia. There will never be meaningful development without infrastructure development.

If I were a hon. Minister and sat in Cabinet, I would propose to the President that we reflect on the vision of the RDA. I would even suggest that we go back to the time when people in the Roads Department, directly connected to the ministry, worked on these roads, patching holes.

Yesterday, I was driving from Kapiri Mposhi on the newly emerging roads and somebody making roads was there and yet I hit five potholes on the road that somebody had just repaired. There is no seriousness at all.


Mr Chimbaka: Madam Speaker, I think such bodies can go. 

In agriculture, when the Republican President, His Excellency Dr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, delivered his speech on the opening of the Fifth National Assembly, he said and I want to quote:

“From sacrifice to wealth creation: making the economy and social services work for the people of Zambia”

That was the President giving a policy directive. Have we gone closer to his dream? If we have not, have we ever sat down as Members of Parliament all together – I want to emphasise the point that sometimes people get lost in political fanaticism to the extent of forgetting that the legislators are part of the Government.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Therefore, they want to argue without reason. I say that when this was delivered in this House, we all listened and had an obligation to ensure that we implemented what was stated there.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Whether we are from the UPND, PF or MMD, we are all bound and should do that, failure to which we fail to understand the reason we exist.

Madam Speaker, I feel we need to move forward on this speech, especially that the Zambians are thirsty and thirsty for development.

Mr Mabenga: On a point of order, Madam.

Madam Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mabenga: Madam Speaker, I am wondering whether the hon. Member for Lusaka Central is in order when he fails to sit straight and look to the Speaker’s Chair, but is tilted towards the back. Is he in order to sit in that direction which may cause him backache? I need your serious ruling.


Madam Deputy Speaker: The point of order is the hon. Member’s concern over how the hon. Doctor, hon. Member for Lusaka Central, is sitting. From the Chair’s position, the hon. Member is sitting in a most appropriate manner. The hon. for Bahati will continue the debate.

Mr Chimbaka: I was saying on agriculture, the President was very explicit and clear in his policy statement where he stated and I quote:

“Cattle restocking started in 2004 with the Southern Province and will spread to all the provinces thereafter.”

That was in 2005.This year, when we approved the budget on the Floor of the House, it was said in Luapula Province in particular, there was enough money to restock fish. This has not been done.

Madam Speaker, it is acts of this nature which make the people out there doubt the seriousness of our Government. Some people believe that it is only the President who may lose elections. I get concerned because this, if not done, will also affect me.

 I seriously want to say that let the Government and authorities that be look towards implementing these things. The people of Zambia are waiting for reality and implementation.

 I want to say that I am very disappointed and on record that some of the programmes in agriculture that have come to Luapula are doing evil. They do not even recognise the PS. They cannot even acknowledge PACO.  The PLAD boys and girls are a let down. I wish hon. Magande could take action. If they want to take money back to their country, let them do so. We are used to cassava and we grow better and healthy that way. It has taken too long and the money is gone when the Government put in US$10 million which money has not trickled down to the people of Zambia.

Madam Speaker, I am an educationist, can I say education is key to life. Education is terminus a quo life. Education is the engine of development. Industrial development will never be there and will remain a fallacy without education. How I wish that premium Education Bills are going to be enhanced for us to realise this.

Madam Speaker, on a closing note, I want to end by thanking the President of PF, Sata …

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: … but listen, I want to commend him for one thing. He withstood the pressure from people to cause Zambia fires and realised there was life beyond being President. He kept peace in this country and averted what is happening in Kenya. I respect the man. I will respect him on that note.

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Dr Scott (Lusaka Central): Thank you Madam Speaker. I wish to support the Motion and I want to follow in the footsteps of His Excellency by first lamenting the loss of my fallen comrade. I mean my late colleague, Henry ‘Zoona’ Mtonga, who brought the word ‘Zoona’ into common parliamentary usage in the Commonwealth Parliaments. The hon. Member for Kanyama is a big loss not only to this country, the Government and this House, but to the PF and, most especially, to me personally.

He was very mature. He was a very wise, loyal and truthful man. It was my loss that I only knew him for about the last fifteen months of his life because I had not met him until he opted to stand on the PF ticket in Kanyama in 2006.
This is not much known, but there was a big fight in the PF Central Committee concerning the selection of a new comer, as he was perceived, over the long standing members of the PF Central Committee. Eventually, the PF Central Committee, with great soul searching picked on Mr Henry J. Mtonga, and he never forgot to be grateful that we had made him, if you like, a home. He did not turn around and start castigating the same PF Central Committee for not being elected unlike himself. May his soul rest in peace.

Mr Kambwili: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: Whilst on the same subject, I would like to extend thanks - I am sorry he is not in the House - to the Vice-President for taking such prompt action as soon as we all, belatedly, heard of the crisis that was developing. He took prompt action to supply the logistics and resources to take the pressure off his family so that he received a very honourable funeral and burial.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: Madam Speaker, we are all, of course, excited in this House that the President should come and tell us that the mining companies are, from some point very near in the future, going to pay a reasonable level, an average or medium level, of tax to this Government so that we may use it on infrastructure development.

However, I am a little puzzled and I hope somebody from the Government side during the course of his debate - it is a pity the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning is not here - can clarify what it is that is puzzling me. At the beginning of the last Session, we were told to be patient because negotiations or discussions with the mining companies were underway.

In fact, there was even a motion that we passed in this House urging the Government to get on, if you like, with the negotiations. We were being patient or showed patience because we did not insist that there must be a windfall of tax immediately. Since that time, the Secretary to the Treasury assured the Estimates Committee and we have read in the newspapers of consultants being appointed to represent Zambia’s interests in the negotiations with these mining companies.

Suddenly, the President comes to Parliament and tells us that there is a new tax regime coming. I think it is a very unreasonable influence for people who have been given the information that the new tax regime has emerged from the negotiations with the mining companies and that the mining companies are fully acquainted with that new tax regime as per the plan and that they have agreed to it.

Madam Speaker, I was, therefore, extremely surprised and I noted a little concern to read the following day, I will lay this on the Table, in The Post, of Saturday day, 12th January, 2008, Page 3, under the headline, ‘Mines receive new tax regime with mixed feelings.’ Now, do mixed feeling arise from negotiations or agreements?


Dr Scott: Madam Speaker, it is not only mixed feeling, but also ignorance. A certain Luanshya Copper Mines Chief Executive said, ‘We accept the President’s announcement. We are not here to confrontation or to argue with the Government, but it is a pity we were not consulted before.’

Therefore, we are wondering whether all these consultations that we were being patient for were taking place. If they had been taking place, do they concern this particular peace of legislation …

Mr Kambwili: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: … or is it something running in parallel which they still feel they had the liberty to take to court in the light of their mining agreements, for example, and the Government purpose.

I have here the proof of the Zambia Daily Mail, Saturday, 12th January 2008. The editorial saying in the last paragraph, ‘As steps are being taken to effect the restructured tax regime, the corporation of the mining companies will be required.’ It is not a statement that the mining companies have been consulted and are fully aware of what is involved in this new business.

Furthermore, reading in the Times of Zambia, 12th January, 2008, ‘Care has also been taken on two fonts. First that the change in tax regime is not simply imposed, but was through a negotiation process and secondly there has been sufficient time left since the idea was announced.’ I am baffled!

Madam Speaker, is this the outcome of the process of negotiations which all parties have agreed? Or is this a planed unilateral position by the Government on the mining companies irrespective of any negotiations which have been carried out? This is very important because those development agreements give the mining companies protection before the law from that sort of unilateral action.

I would guess from the little information that I have, I managed to find out from what I have seen here, we will get this brought to this Parliament. We will get applauded by the people of Zambia especially the people living on the Copperbelt. We will be applauded by the doldrums. Thank God you are raising your own money at last and the matter will then end in court. I think we should be more fully informed and we should be told exactly what is coming up.

Mr Kambwili: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: Now, the Great Ding Shao Ding, I hope my pronunciation is up to the standards of some Members of this House. The man who navigated China through its transition from Maoism to – the Vice-President has come and, therefore, I can revert to my normal attacking style.


Dr Scott: He was famous because he guided China through the transition from Maoism. He never became President of China, but he was the most influential person in that crucial period. He is famous for the well known phrase which says, ‘We do not care, who cares what colour your cat is? What matters is, does it catch the mice?’ What he meant by that was, we do not care whether we have socialism or                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       capitalism, but as long as it does the job and produces the goods and so forth.

The job of the Opposition, and I think we should not misunderstand it as somebody said yesterday, is to monitor and be constructive, but not necessarily very politely about what is happening. The question that the PF has been asking about our relationship with the People’s Republic of China is, yes, we see them here because they are catching mice …

Ms Mumbi: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: … but how many of those mice are for us and how many of those mice are they taking home to Beijing?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: I guess they must be imbeba mice because they are seen to have some economic virtue. It is a perfectly good question to us.

Mr Kambwili: Mwilandila pafipuna mulecita debate!

Dr Scott: Just recently, the Republic of Malawi broke off its relationship with Taiwan and has taken up relations with China.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: According to the BBC, this is in return for a package of US$6 billion from the Chinese in aid. Therefore, I would say congratulations to the Malawians. You have done what is expected in international diplomacy.


Dr Scott: You have taken all the money from the Taiwanese and now you are taking a huge amount of money from the Chinese also. Well done!

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: It is like the English upper class mothers who tell their daughters, ‘Darling, if you want a good husband, play hard to get and also play one against the other.’ That is what one would expect the Zambian Government to be doing - eating with both hands.

Hon. Government Members: No!

Dr Scott: In international diplomacy, there are no permanent friends.

The People’s Republic of China has a lack of integrity. Has anybody ever heard of integrity in international relations? I think this is the last area. The first President of the Republic of China said that the most important principle for which any Government must be based is self national interest. Other things can be in that context as well as the added democracy and equality.

Mr Speaker, there are two areas where I think the Zambian Government does not come out very well. I do wish to support yesterday’s debate by Hon. Kambwili, the hon. Member for Roan.

Mr Kambwili: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: Hon. Kambwili mentioned something which was of concern to him and I think it is of concern to us all or those of us on this side (left) of the House because we do not care what colour the cat is, there should be something to do. The concern is of the new media issue. My main concern is about the way the sub-Saharan African countries are moving politically and not tribalism. It is the divide which is appearing between the urban and rural areas politically in so many countries like Zimbabwe, Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Ethiopia. For some reason, the Opposition controls the towns and the Government controls the rural areas. One of the reasons for that is the vulnerability of the people in the rural areas…

Mr Kambwili: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: … and the vulnerability to all kinds of pressures, including the pressure of ignorance and of misinformation. It is very easy to intimidate a rural dweller who is not well informed. It is very easy to intimidate somebody by threatening not to deliver the fertiliser inputs. It is very easy to threaten somebody by threatening not to buy the maize from him.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: It is very easy for chiefs who are on the side of the Government to even threaten to take away land because people have no security of tenure. If you are going to add that to Government media, Government Newspapers and Government Press while the hon. Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services continues to use his discretion to discipline and even cancel the licences of community radio stations and community broadcasting stations, you are introducing the one party State in the rural areas and you are having some kind of multi-party democracy in the towns. In my opinion, I had explained to somebody in London that the problem is not that the Luo and the Kikuyu hate each other. The problem is…


Mr Mulongoti: On a point of order, Madam Speaker.

Madam Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mulongoti: Madam Speaker, is the hon. Member who sounds very distraught in order to insinuate that we are canceling licences when, in fact, we have a role to protect communities whenever we see that there is some misconduct of some kind? We believe that we must protect freedom of speech but it must be with responsibility. Madam Speaker, I need your serious ruling.

Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! The ruling on this matter from the Chair is that the hon. Member on the Floor debating and referring to the canceling of licences may debate with facts and put that concern into consideration. He may continue.

Hon. PF Members: Hammer!

Dr Scott: Madam Speaker, I think we had a Bill in this House for debate during which we were discussing the question of which licences had been granted and not. I have seen the threats. I will compile the Hansards and newspaper cuttings for the House and will lay them on the Table in due course. This is the fear that any intelligent person has that the new laws are easier to control for the Government than they are for the Opposition to campaign because of the extent and the vulnerability of the people, including the school teachers and other people to whom people turn for advice. Probably, if we had taken it to court, it would have been a simple matter.

Madam Speaker, at the least, I do not want to see any part of the Opposition in this House telling its own Members like a crazed…

Mr Kambwili: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: … but I want just for the record on the situation regarding the policy of PF which is made by the Central Committees and is more democratic in terms of votes. There are further Disciplinary Committees and other structures in PF precisely, as they are in MMD Government.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: The policy is in a nutshell. As we see the NCC Act in its present form, I am emphasising in its present form because we have attempted to negotiate amendments. In fact, we failed to even bring it to division because we were promised amendments on the next day when the Committee Stage would be coming and they did not come. In its present form, the NCC Act effectively robs the churches of their moral authority…


Dr Scott: … and hands that moral authority…


Dr Scott: If the hon. Members do not wish to know, I can always…

Madam Deputy Speaker: Speak through the Chair.

Dr Scott: Madam Speaker, I am.


Dr Scott: Madam Speaker, the NCC Act had taken that moral authority and handed it to a small Non-Governmental Organisation funded by the Dutch tax payers because they do not know what happens with the money they pay. I sincerely wonder weather the Dutch tax payers would be proud to have contributed to what many people would consider an obscene twist in the way that the people of Zambia represent them. I reiterate that we would be very happy to come to the NCC. Do you think I do not want to fill my pockets? Of course I do.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: Madam Speaker, there is a problem with the present structure of that institution and, therefore, the PF’s policy is to remain out until the very minor problem is repaired.

Madam Speaker, I thank you for your indulgence and the Members for their support.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Scott: I thank you, Madam.{mospagebreak}

The Deputy Minister for Western Province (Mr Mufalali): Madam Speaker, I thank you for having given me this opportunity to debate on the speech delivered by His Excellency Dr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, to this august House.

Madam Speaker, the speech is very encouraging and inspiring.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mufalali: Madam Speaker, the President congratulated this House on the manner in which it debated some serous issues during the last session.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mufalali: I am proud to be part of this assembly which will go a long way in the history of this great nation because of its ushering in the National Constitutional Conference Act, Number 19 of 2007, which has put in place the NCC the first ever consultation process of such a magnitude in the Constitution Making Process. I am proud to be a member of the NCC.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mufalali: Madam Speaker, when I die, my name will remain in the book of the Zambian history and I am proud, indeed.

Madam Speaker, I am grateful to President Mwanawasa, SC, for the fatherly love that he has shown to the people of Zambia. He has awakened the dozing provinces which were fast asleep…

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mufalali: …without fear or favour. Western Province and North-Western Province were offered nothing by the previous regimes. However, today, Dr Mwanawasa has proved that in Kalabo and Lukulu in Western Province, geological surveys have shown positive results of oil.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mufalali: Madam Speaker, Mongu District has shown positive results of gas. Today, North-Western Province is the real Copperbelt. He has further appointed a committee to look into the petroleum exploration in this country. Indeed, the Speech touches all ministries in our republic.

Madam Speaker, I thank the New Deal Government because in my constituency today, people are able view television Zambia, except in the remotest areas like Imusho, Lwampungu and Kalobolelwa, hoping in future, these areas will receive the reception. The Katima Mulilo Bridge and the Livinsgtone/Sesheke Road and now hopefully the Sesheke/Senanga Road will soon be constructed although it is now closed to the public because of the bad state.

 Madam Speaker, Western Province is one of the poorest provinces in Zambia. However…


Mr Mufalali: …with a population of 912, 226 and a land area of 126, 385 square kilometres, at a density of 7.2 persons per square kilometre, an abundance of alluvial soils enriched by annual floods and availability of water, the province will be as productive as the other provinces.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mufalali: Madam Speaker, I thank the New Deal Government for giving us the following roads in our Province for maintenance and rehabilitation:

 (i) M10-Mulobezi Road;

 (ii) Luampa/Machile Road;

 (iii) Mongu/ Kaoma Road;

(iv) Kalale/Njonjolo Road;

(v) Kaoma/Kasempa Road;

(vi) Limulunga/Senanga Road;

(vii) Mongu/Kalabo Road, which the Government is still committed to complete; and

(viii) Senanga/Sesheke Road, which is now closed to traffic because of its bad state but I am quite certain that the contractor will soon come in urgently because the people on the Zambezi West Bank are completely cut of from the rest of the province.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mufalali: Madam Speaker, I am happy that the province was allocated a total of K3.5 billion for the Poverty Reduction Programme and K3.2 billion was released by the Ministry of Finance and National Planning. However, late release of the funds delayed project implementations. As such, most of the activities are still underway. In terms of release of funds, this is 90 per cent of the allocated 2007 PRP funds received by the province. Therefore, I congratulate Hon. Magande for having done that.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mufalali: Madam Speaker, because of the positive impact of Fertiliser Support Programme, the province had a surplus of 60.023 by 50 kg bags of maize, 3,645 by 50 kg bags of rice and 240 by 50 kg bags of cassava in 2007, which were sold to FRA as a surplus…

Hon. Member: Surplus?

Mr Mufalali: Yes, despite unprecedented high floods ever seen in 27 years.

Madam Speaker, in conclusion…


Madam Deputy Speaker: Order!

Mr Mufalali: I would like to commend Hon. Matongo for the way he debates. He debates…

Hon. Member: In a mature way.

Mr Mufalali: …in a mature way and does not point fingers at others because if someone points a finger at other people, the other three fingers point at him also.


Mr Mufalali: Therefore, I congratulate my young brother for the way he debates. I have no other words.

Thank you, Madam.


Hon. Members: Quality!

Madam Deputy Speaker: Order!

Before I allow further debate, may I ask you hon. Members that, indeed, consultation is allowed, but it has to be done quietly. Indeed, there is a light moment, but when it becomes continuous, then, we may not be really listening as carefully as we ought to and the Chair finds it difficult to concentrate because the Chair must understand what the debater is saying. Therefore, can we come back to order.

The Deputy Minister of Science, Technology and Vocational Training (Ms Changwe): Madam Speaker, I thank you for according me this opportunity to add my voice in congratulating the President of this Republic, Dr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, for the very good Speech that gives hope, direction and also inspires the Zambian people. In adding my voice and in debating the speech, I want to talk about certain issues that will not pertain to my Ministry but later on zero in to those that relate to my Ministry.

Madam Speaker, Zambia is a democratic country and for the information of certain quarters of this society that, perhaps, do not know tenets of democracy, I will mention a few. We have free and fair elections, equality before the law, consent of the governed, accountability and transparency. We know very well that in this nation, on 28th September, 2006, the MMD as a party and the New Deal Administration was given a yes vote, an overwhelming yes vote by the people of Zambia.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: That was in free and fair elections.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: Madam Speaker, I am happy to be part of the wining team that was given that mandate.
Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Madam Speaker: To the hon. Member of Parliament who are shouting that they rigged, I want to say that in my constituency there was no rigging because those parties to which they belong are non-existent in Mkushi North Constituency. I want to say that under the tenets of democracy, there is consent of the governed, this Government has gone ahead to actually include the people of Zambia in giving them the laws that they shall be governed with, and this is through the NCC.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: Madam Speaker, consent of the people is actually represented in the NCC. As I stand here, I am proud to say that I represent a cross-section of society from the farmers, to the teachers, youths, name them and these hon. Members that are part of the NCC, are representing the people of Zambia who gave them the consent to lead them. As such, we are following the tenets of democracy. I also want to say that never in the history of this country have we seen the levels of accountability and transparency that we are seeing today.

Hon. Government: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: Madam Speaker, talking about accountability and transparency, these hon. Members of Parliament have been given the mandate by the Head of State to be the overseers of the projects that the Government is running in their constituencies. What other accountability and transparency can people talk of? 

Madam Speaker, in the Presidential Address, the President alluded to the fact that the Auditor General’s Office will actually trickle down to provinces and I hope even to districts and constituency level.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: Madam Speaker, this is the MMD’s resolve to show the people of Zambia that we are transparent.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: We want all those people that are involved in corrupt activities and mismanagement of public funds to be brought to book.

Hon. Government Member: Bwekeshapo.

Ms Changwe: Madam Speaker, in the past, we did not know the misapplication of funds. Why? As Hon. Tetamashimba said, people were sweeping these issues under the carpet, …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: … but today, we have heard of all this mismanagement. In my opinion, this has led to minimising of misuse of public funds. This is the accountability that we are talking about. This Government is very open. This Government is listening. In fact, I should have entitled my debate ‘The Listening Government.’

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: What we are experiencing is what we are living under today in Zambia.

Madam Speaker, I want to talk about what the Ministry of Local Government and Housing proposed through the speech that the President gave to this House. The Ministry of Local Government and Housing is suggesting that the district councils should have an integrated development plan. To me, that is a plus and a service to the people of Zambia.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: Why do I say so? It is because the direction of development in a district shall be laid there.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: I want to tell you one thing, Madam Speaker, and hon. Members of Parliament that in my constituency and, indeed, in my district council, we have problems. My council is full MMD, but we have problems, why? This is because the MMD councillors are quick to develop because we are following the orders of our boss and our leaders, the Cabinet Ministers. Now, all these councillors want to take development to their areas, which is very good. As such, we have a problem because every councillor wants a portion of that Constituency Development Fund (CDF) to go to his/her ward. Then, we have peace in distribution of the CDF. That shows how hard working the MMD councillors are in Mkushi District Council. To solve our problem hon. Minister, you have done very well because now we shall use the CDF and follow the direction of development as laid down in the district plan.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: I want to commend the hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing for such an initiative.

Hon. Government Member: Bwekeshapo.

Ms Changwe: That is a very good service, Madam Minister.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: Madam Speaker, allow me to dwell a bit on the issues of gender. It is very disappointing for a Member of Parliament to come to this House and inform the nation that the effectiveness of female Members of Parliament lies in declaring their marital status.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: Madam Speaker, adding an ‘R’ between ‘M’ and ‘S’ will not enhance my effectiveness.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: If I come here today and declare that, in fact, I am not just Lucy Changwe, but Mrs Chinyama, that will not enhance my effectiveness.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: I do not understand, really, why it should be an issue that people should know that I am Mrs Chinyama.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: The effectiveness of female Members of Parliament lies in their going to NCC to formulate law that will help the other women and bridge the gender gap.


Ms Changwe: That is where the effectiveness of female Members of Parliament lies.


Hon. Government Member: Mumbi.


Ms Changwe: Madam Speaker, some people do not understand what gender means. Some people think gender is about women. Gender is about providing opportunities for both the male and female.


Ms Changwe: As such, Madam Speaker, I want to state that in this world, there will never be gender balance. Where we are, here, there is gender imbalance because the females are few and the females can complain. It is understandable. When you look at the population of this country …

Mr Simuusa: On a point of order, Madam Speaker.

Madam Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised. Microphone.

Mr Simuusa:  Madam Speaker, is the hon. Minister in order to say that NCC has gone to formulate laws or it is discussing a draft Constitution? I need your ruling, Madam Speaker.


Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! In fact, the Chair has not even been asked to make a ruling. However, let us not dwell on semantics when we are discussing. Formulation at the end of the day, or the process, has begun. The end document will be, indeed, called formulation too.

May the hon. Deputy Minister continue, please.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: Thank you very much, Madam Deputy Speaker. I was saying some people have misunderstood the concept of gender because people think gender is about women. Such people need to be educated …

Hon. Government Members: Yes.

Ms Changwe: … so that they know that gender is about providing windows of opportunity to both the female and male species.


Ms Changwe: Now, Madam Speaker, I was saying in this House there is gender imbalance, and the females can say we are few. I want to ask, is it the making of Government that the females are few?

Hon. Government Members: No.

Ms Changwe: This Government has done a lot in terms of affirmative action, to try and bridge the gap between the disadvantaged gender and the one that is in a relatively better position. Look at what is happening in education where 30 per cent of the places at University of Zambia are reserved for female students. When offering bursaries, 30 per cent of the places are reserved for female students.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: In the institutions under the Ministry of Science, Technology and Vocational Training, we have a bursary scheme and 30 per cent of the places are reserved for female students. What are people talking about?

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: Madam Speaker, I was saying when you look at the population of this country, women are more than men. That is gender imbalance. That is why I said, there will never be gender balance, at a given time you have either more men and no women and it is not anyone’s making. All that we are doing and what this Government is doing is to try and bridge the gap.

My point is that let us not mislead people that we have to declare our marital status and that, maybe, by being married that is when we will be effective. We cannot be effective if we are just talking about that but instead, we need to show the nation and, indeed, the world that the women can make it by participating in developmental issues such as …

Ms Mumbi: On a point of order, Madam.

Madam Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Ms Mumbi: Madam Speaker …


Madam Deputy Speaker: Order, hon. Members.

Ms Mumbi: … I thank you for giving me this opportunity to raise this point of order. Let me remind the speaker that I am …


Madam Deputy Speaker: Order!

Ms Mumbi: Madam Speaker, is the hon. Deputy Minister in order to put her words in my mouth? I say so because it is my right to be called the way I want. If she wants to be called ‘Miss’, it is up to her. If I prefer to be called ‘Mrs’ …

Hon. MMD Members: Raise your point of order.

Ms Mumbi: Excuse me; is she in order to guide me as to what I should be called? It is my choice to be called ‘Miss’ or ‘Mrs’.  I need your serious ruling.


Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! Hon. Members, the ruling of the Chair on this matter is that as you debate this Motion, which began yesterday, it means that you raise issues and others may respond to them. They may not be answering and may be adding their own opinion to a situation. Let as raise points of order when it becomes absolutely necessary.


Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! Let us remember that we are hon. Members and, therefore, even the way we respond to those that are debating should show that we are truly honourable and let us debate in an honourable manner.

Ms Changwe: Madam Speaker, I want to talk about agriculture in a very small way as it relates to my province and indeed, my district. The President last year announced to this House that cattle restocking would be an ongoing process. I want to happily say that we have received cattle in Central Province which has gone to the farmer groups that lost cattle. Two farmer groups have received cattle in my constituency. This is a delivering Government …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: … and it must be on record that this Government listens to the plight of the people. On behalf of the people of Mkushi District, I am saying thank you very much to the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives for actually honouring the words that the President said.

Madam Speaker, the President alluded to the Ministry of Science, Technology and Vocational Training and said that the direction for our ministry this year would be the reviewing of the policy on science and technology and indeed, to look at the aspects that relate to research and development. I want to state that the ministry is in fact in the process, following that directive, of reviewing the policy and has also been sponsoring a number of research activities. One of them is Yatu Tea, which is made from moringa, and the ministry has actually encouraged the scientists to commercialise that technology and innovation. Therefore, we are actually in order in following the policies and directives of the President.

Madam Speaker, apart from that, we are also sponsoring National  Institute for Scientific and Industrial Research (NISR) to build on the technology of the windmills that can, in fact, generate electricity.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: This will be a cheaper form of electricity for our people. We are working hand in hand with Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO) and ZAMCAPITOL so that this innovation can be used at a larger scale. You may know that in Mporokoso there is a young man who came up with a very cheap technology of producing power. We have, in fact, funded that kind of innovation because we are promoting research.

Madam Speaker, we are also promoting technologies and research on the use of herbal remedies for diseases like HIV/AIDS and other illnesses. The ministry has so far done very well in this area. You may wish to know that the ministry is sponsoring nine female scientists who are involved in this research at masters degree level. Six of them will be graduating this year and we will be advertising for more scientists so that we can fund them and they can bring about research that is going to help this country to develop.

Madam Speaker, the President talked about skills and training. We have a number of institutions in this country that are dotted around the provinces. I want to report to this House that under infrastructure development the ministry is renovating or rehabilitating Mongu Trades in Western Province, Solwezi Trades in North-Western Province, Ukwimi in Eastern Province, Kabwe Skills Training in Central Province, Northern Technical College (Nortec) in the Copperbelt Province and Mansa Trades Training Institute in Luapula Province. We are actually everywhere and we are not even selective. We want to put the infrastructure in order and to acceptable standards so that Zambia can compete at international level.

I want to issue a timely warning to the people that are in the habit of coming up with institutions that are not registered under TEVET. TEVET, for those that do not know, stands for Technical Education, Vocational and Entrepreneurship Training. That is the regulatory body. In today’s Times of Zambia newspaper, TEVET has actually outlined or tabulated all the institutions that are not registered. I want to issue a timely warning to those institutions because my Government does not want to compromise quality.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: As much as we would want to encourage access, we are concerned with the quality of education that is being offered there. TEVET has been doing a lot and just yesterday we were at Palabana Dairy Training Institute in Chongwe where we have purchased computers under the TEVET Fund. There is a TEVET fund and I would want to encourage all those institutions that have sellable projects and proposals to forward them to the ministry so that we can fund these institutions. This Government encourages public-private partnerships and we want o fund all the institutions if possible so that we can raise the quality of education.

Madam Speaker, I want to state that the Ministry of Science, Technology and Vocational Training is actually a cross-cutting ministry. In this technological era, we shall abide by the Presidential Speech and ensure that there is effective implementation of what the President has guided.

Madam Speaker, I also want to say that under the TEVET Act, No. 11 of 1998 and, indeed, the amended Act No. 13 of 2005, the hon. Minister of Science, Technology and Vocational Training is mandated to close all the institutions that are of sub-standard. As such, we shall swing into action to close all those institutions that are not registered and are not being inspected. I am, however, happy to report that the majority of these institutions have adhered to the policies and indeed, we have been there to inspect them.

Madam Speaker, as I end my contribution I want to reiterate my position of saying that this is a listening Government …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Changwe: … and I want to urge the people of Zambia that come 2011, MMD will be back in power so that we continue with the good policies that we have put in place.

I thank you, Madam.

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

The Deputy Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources (Mr Chilembo): Madam Speaker, there is time for everything and today it is not time for me to defend the speech which was delivered by the President because his speech has been well received by groups and individuals who were least expected to support his speech. Even those who had opposed the good things that the Government do or say have clearly come out, not only to praise the speech which was made, but also acknowledged that even previous speeches have been excellent. The only quarrel has been on the question of implementation.

I wish to acknowledge that, indeed, time has come for us to have a new Constitution as well as new fiscal and regulatory framework for the mining sector. I also wish to state that it is now time to take tourism to higher heights, practice and address the issues affecting climate change.

Madam Speaker, the journey to mark a new Constitution has been long overdue. His Excellency the President took positive steps to shorten this journey by coming up with the idea of establishing the National Constitutional Conference (NCC).

In this regard, I thank the hon. Members of this House for supporting the idea by enacting the National Constitutional Conference No. 19 of 2007 to establish the National Constitutional Conference which is already working.

As I said, the journey is long. Some will suffer from dehydration and may not get to the Promised Land where the new Constitution shall reign. Instead, they may lay by the road side and accuse those that are marching ahead through the NCC with the people of Zambia that they are about to enact a Constitution that will bar their leader from standing as President under that new Constitution that we are looking for.

I wish to tell them that there are no such plans. What they need is to participate in the process and defend their desired candidate. If they stay away, it is like a football match, they may not be allowed to take a penalty.

Therefore, I appeal to them to come along and join us in enacting this Constitution.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chilembo: The National Constitutional Conference Chairman, Hon. Chifumu Banda, SC, MP is on record inviting our friends to come along. He is ready to give them a glass of water to quench their thirst and have some energy to stand up and perform this national duty of enacting a Constitution which the people of this country are looking forward to.

Madam Speaker, how do we address serious issues which have arisen mainly, from the fact that the time limit in implementing the budget is too short. Hon. Members have lamented in this House, so, how do we address these issues. We need a budget cycle which can run for at least, twelve months. Unfortunately, what we are seeing is that the time to implement the budget is normally short.

Dr Scott: Harmer!

Mr Chilembo: We therefore need to change the law so that we have enough time to implement budgets that are passed in this House and the only way to implement this is by going back to our constitution and amend the budget cycle as enshrined in the Constitution.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chilembo: If we keep away from the constitution-making process, it would be difficult for us to address these problems. As such, ministers will be failing to implement the budgets due to the time frame limit which is too short. It is like in an examination where even an intelligent student may not pass if he writes his examination within a very unrealistic time.

Madam Speaker, I, therefore appeal to my colleagues to join us in this process so that we can amend that particular clause to the Constitution to lengthen the budget cycle. Therefore, come brothers and sisters, do not sit back, this is your country. If you continue sitting back we shall go ahead and I will be advocating for bringing those clauses which are not contentious for immediate enactment. This particular clause I am referring to is very urgent. Therefore, I would want even at the next sitting that we quickly bring this particular clause on the budget cycle to this Parliament for enactment.

I am sure we shall all agree that we need this urgent amendment so that what we might leave would be just those clauses which are contentious in nature. We may spend time on those, but those where we agree, let us bring them here and enact. That is what I will stand for. I am appealing to my colleagues to also take this stand so that we develop this country for we are in a hurry to do so.

As for the new fiscal and regulatory framework, we were all agreeing in this House in the last session that Zambians were not getting a fair share from mineral royalties. Now the time has come for this country to benefit our people, so there is no point for any group of people to claim that they are the only ones who are clever and saw these points. We all saw it; it is just that everything has got its own time. Our Government has started taking this idea on board. Therefore, we should all side with the Government and the President for listening. This is what we mean when we say that we are a listening Government. It is not a sign of weakness to get a brilliant ideal even from the Opposition, but when you see that the idea is taken you think that you have won as if it is a race. This is not a race we are dealing with people’s lives. As legislators you are also part of the Government.

Madam Deputy Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1815 hours until 1830 hours.

Mr Chilembo: Madam Speaker, when business was suspended I was saying that I want to emphasise that regardless of our political affiliations, at the end of the day, our common object is to do good for Zambians and serve them. We should never be seen as if we are people in some kind of competition. All that we have to do as hon. Members of Parliament is give ourselves a big “hear, hear!” for a job well done. That is a job which has led us to come up with the new fiscal and regulatory framework.

Madam Speaker, I now wish to turn to tourism, environment and natural resources. Tourism is an area where when you are tired you can be given a bed. If you feel bored you can have a dance …

Hon. Member: What dance?


Mr Chilembo: Any dance. This is an area where I am inviting hon. Members of Parliament to take interest in. I, therefore, wish to thank all the hon. Members of Parliament for supporting the Zambia Tourism Bill and Tourism and Hospitality Bill which were passed in the House during the last session.

There is no doubt in mind that these two pieces of legislation will take tourism to higher heights through intensified tourism marketing by the Zambia Tourism Board. It is hoped that more tourists will be attracted. That is tourists at both the international and local levels. I urge all hon. Members of Parliament to join in seriously marketing the tourism industry even in their various constituencies.

 Let us, in one voice, educate our people that tourism does not mean white or white man. Neither does tourist operator …

Hon. Government Member: Guy Scott.

Mr Chilembo: … mean white woman. Tourism is colour blind. Our local indigenous people can also be both tourists and tourist entrepreneurs hence the Tourism Development Credit Fund established in 2003 to empower our citizens to participate. This is not mere cheap talk. As you may know, there are various Zambians who have benefited in our various constituencies.

The announcement by the President in his address on page 42 of his speech that the Government intends to develop Kasaba Bay, Nsumbu National Park …

Hon. Sikazwe: Hear, hear!

Mr Chilembo: … Kaputa, Mbala and Mpulungu into the Kasaba Bay Tourism Resort Development Project …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chilembo: … through private-public ownership is good news which we should take to our people. Let us take this message to our people and encourage them to participate in this lucrative industry which creates employment.

Mr V. Mwale: Bwekeshapo!

Mr Chilembo: Climate change is very topical these days. It affects tourism, agriculture, health, water as well as natural resources, particularly wild life and forestry.

As we have seen with what is happening now, there are floods in the country and in the Southern Province, the effects have been very telling as we have even lost some lives.

Hon. Member: These Tongas do not know how to swim.

Mr Chilembo: These problems can come as a result of cutting trees. I am aware that my colleagues, the hon. Members of Parliament from the Southern Province have usually urged the Government to sink boreholes, but from what we have seen, I think the emphasis should shift to dams because when you sink so many boreholes, the water table tends to go lower and lower, making it very difficult for trees to absorb such water. However, if you have dams, it will be easier for trees to absorb water and the water table is bound to come up.

Hon. Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Chilembo: We need to have these dams so that the water which has been given to us by God can be harvested.

Hon. Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Chilembo: This is the direction we see can benefit our people. Adaptation to climate change is a priority in our country. As the Government, we are putting in place the National Adaptation Programme of Action to adapt to the current and unprecedented adverse effects of climate change in order to guide the country in carrying out adaptation activities. You may wish to know that this is not by accident. This National Adaptation Programme of Action is actually provided for in the Fifth National Development Plan on page 153 if you check properly.

Tourism relies heavily on natural resources such as tropical forests and wild life safaris. In addition, most destinations in Zambia are rural areas where many of these natural resources are found. Most of us come from rural constituencies, and therefore, this is one area where we can encourage our people to invest and also get into partnership with other foreign investors who might have the money.

Madam Speaker, in conclusion, let us all support the good measures expressed by his Excellency who was clearly none partisan, as one Member observed, that there was not even a mention of the term MMD in his speech.

Madam Speaker, let us not forget that we are all implementers at whatever level. Do not point in one direction that this Government is not delivering when even you as a hon. Member of Parliament have a duty to implement some of the programmes.

Do not just look at the Constituency Development Fund. There are a lot of programmes where you can also participate and provide leadership to help people in your constituency. After all you are part of the law making process.

I must say there are no winners in this whole process. The only winners are the people of Zambia and I see that this is the spirit and the intent of the Presidential address.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The Minister of Justice (Mr Kunda): I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.

The House adjourned at1840 hours until 1430 hours on Thursday, 17th January, 2008