Debates- Tuesday, 27th February, 2007

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Tuesday, 27th February, 2007

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER, in the Chair]






338. Mr Sejani (Mapatizya) asked the Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives when the Government would construct dams in the following areas:

(i) Siakasasa Village;
(ii) Jahali Village;
(iii) Kanyanga Village; and
(iv) Mafumba Village

The Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives (Mr Kalenga): Mr Speaker, every year, the Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives provides funds for dam construction and rehabilitation in its annual work plans and budgets especially for drought prone areas. The beneficiary communities are required to contribute matching grants before these facilities are provided. Matching grants are contributions in kind of farmers in form of provision of locally available materials such as sand, stones and clearing of roads etc.

Community contributions can be up to 25 per cent of the cost of the project. Therefore, communities of Siakasasa Village, Jahali Village, Kanyanga Village and Mafumba Village in need of dams should contact the District Agricultural Coordinator’s Office (DACO) for additional information and facilitation.

I thank you, Sir.


339. Mr Sejani asked the Minister of Education when the following schools in the Mapatizya Parliamentary Constituency would be rehabilitated:

(i) Chuundwe Basic School;
(ii) Muzya Basic School;
(iii) Kanyanga Basic School;
(iv) Mulamfu Basic School;
(v) Mapatizya Mine School; and
(vi) Simundivwi School

The Minister of Education (Professor Lungwangwa): Mr Speaker, the Government is committed to as many schools as possible across the country. As for the schools listed in the Mapatizya Parliamentary Constituency, the plan is to rehabilitate them as follows:

(i) rehabilitation works at Muzya and Simundivwi Basic Schools have started and the targeted works will be completed before the end of this year, 2007;

(ii) Mapatizya Mine and Chuundwe Basic Schools are targeted for rehabilitation in the 2008 financial year, while Mulamfu and Kanyanga Basic Schools will be considered in 2009; and

(iii) The rest of the schools will be attended to as resources are made available during the Fifth National Development Plan period.

I thank you, Sir.


340. Mr Sejani asked the Minister of Mines and Minerals Development when Mapatizya Mine would be provided with electricity under the Rural Electrification Programme.

The Minister of Mines and Minerals Development (Dr Mwansa): Mr Speaker, electrification of Mapatizya Mine will be considered in the Rural Electrification Programme being spearheaded by the Ministry of Energy and Water Development.

A workshop was held in Livingstone on 22nd November, 2006. At this workshop, the local leadership and all district planners presented the priorities for rural electrification in the province. The Ministry of Energy and Water Development will prioritise this project including the Mapatizya Mine in the master plan in terms of cost and time execution during the course of 2007.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo): Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister of Mines and Minerals Development aware that in the programme under the Gwembe Development Project, Mapatizya Mine was supposed to be electrified as one of the other places that were not done besides electrifying Chief Chikanta?

Dr Mwansa: Mr Speaker, we are aware and plans are very advanced to electrify Mapatizya Mine because we think that it is a very viable area as it is huge and potential for further mine development. Therefore, we are very keen to ensure that Mapatizya Mine has got power in the shortest possible time.

I thank you Sir.



National Payment System Bill, 2007

Report adopted.

Third Reading on Wednesday, 28th February, 2007.




(Debate resumed)

Mr Chongo (Mwense): Mr Speaker, before the House adjourned last week, I was talking about the lack of social services for our people particularly that of clean water.

We were told that only 180 boreholes were done in Luapula Province as compared to the 5,410 boreholes in some other areas during the past five years. It should be noted that although Luapula Province has got abundant water, it is dirty. In most cases, people have to move for over four kilometres to draw water for drinking. Therefore, we are saying, we equally need boreholes in Luapula Province so that we can have access to clean and safe drinking water.

Sir, the other aspect is the neglect of our chiefs in Luapula Province.

Mr D Mwila: Hear, hear!

Mr Chongo: The MMD Government last attempted to build houses for chiefs in 2001. In particular, Chief Lukwesa and Chief Lubunda’s houses were last done six years ago and they are still at roof level and nobody cares to complete them. Yet, the same MMD Government committed itself to build houses for the two chiefs, but you wonder what is happening.

This Government is talking about not having money to do such projects. We wonder why the Government can even think of allocating money to United Bus Company of Zambia (UBZ) which a lot of people do not even know about. They have only heard that there was UBZ which stopped existing in 1991 or 1992. Today, the Government is allocating money to UBZ. They are also allocating money to Kansanshi Copper Mine (KCM) for restructuring. They have also allocated money to institutions like the Zambia Railways (ZR) and the defunct Kafue Textiles of Zambia (KTZ) and yet, our chiefs are just sleeping in structures that cannot be described. This Government does not care about them. What type of Government are they? Where are they taking that money because UBZ is gone? Is it a way of diverting money by taking it to UBZ and then it goes where we do not know?

Surely, can somebody even stand to approve such a budget? I would like the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning to explain that because UBZ does not exist. Why allocate money to an institution which does not exist? We are talking about our children not having laboratories and yet, the amount of money that is allocated to these defunct institutions is about K30 billion. This money can go a long way in enhancing the economic structures that we have in this country. Our people in Luapula Province are not happy about the conduct of this Government. We are, therefore, asking them to …


Mr Chongo: … revisit this and look at the people in Luapula and Northern Provinces as equal partners in the development of this nation …

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chongo: … or else they will have a tough time in future.

I thank you, Sir.

The Deputy Minister of Defence (Mr Akakandelwa): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to contribute to this motion. The motion on the Floor is, of course, about the national budget for 2007.

Sir, I would like to support the budget and not because I am in the Executive, but because this budget is humane, good and that the budget presentation has been marvellous. Therefore, it is a people’s budget.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, I am not the only one who has supported this budget. The Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU), the Civil Society for Poverty Reduction and the Opposition Members of Parliament including Hon. Muntanga in his opening statement supported the budget and their reasons for supporting the budget are very clear.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: As I stated earlier, it is a people’s budget. It is a people’s budget in the sense that it was put together by the consultative process by most of the Members of Parliament through their representatives who had a say in it. It was widely participatory and, certainly, it addresses the people’s desire. Hence, it qualifies to be a people’s budget.

Mr Speaker, we are a Government of vision committed to serving the people of Zambia. This Government has plans to serve the people of Zambia in a short-term through the 2007 budget, in the medium-term, through the Fifth National Development Plan and in the long term, through the Vision 2030.

Sir, this is planning and it is said, if you fell to plan, you are actually planning to fail. This Government is not associated with failure. The Members of Parliament, in this House, who are not in agreement with the budget are not doing it out of their conscious, it is because they have been told to take a certain position.


Mr Akakandelwa: However, this is understandable in an atmosphere of democracy.

Sir, our budget has two components as we all know. We have the domestic component which will be financed by Zambians from their own sources and the foreign component comprising about 28 per cent. We have no doubt that this budget will be balanced because this country enjoys international goodwill with cooperating partners and because of its good economic governance policies. The country enjoys international goodwill. Therefore, we are confident that the budget deficit will be bridged without problems.

Sir, let me refer to one hon. Member who looked at the budget-cover and described one of the pictures belonging to a Chinese.

It is true that the picture had a Chinese face, but the Chinese in question is no other than Hu Jintau, the President of the People’s Republic of China. The President of the People’s Republic of China is not an ordinary person, as you know. China is not an ordinary country. It is a country that has had a rich history in architecture and this is manifested in the fifth year of China. In Zambia, China has brought projects such as the Tazara, …


Mr Akakandelwa: …and the Zambia Mulungushi Textiles. Soon, we will be talking about the Chambeshi Economic Zone.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, China is embarking on a project that will facilitate our copper to be bought. China is going to facilitate the growth of our economy in the sense that it has the fastest growing economy that will need energy.

Mr Speaker, the energy will require to be transmitted to various parts of China. For those that know electricity, copper is the best conductor of electricity. This is why our copper in Zambia is guaranteed of the markets and these markets come from China. Without China, you were not going to open all these mines because you were not going to find market for the copper.

Mr Speaker, that is an economic significance of the People’s Republic of China to Zambia. I said that China is a responsible upcoming supper power and its responsibilities do not only end in Zambia. At the moment, China relies on coal to generate electricity and it is moving away from dirty energy to clean energy. In so doing, we are talking about China being responsible…

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

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, is the Deputy Minister of Defence in order to take more than half his time talking about nothing, but another country instead of telling us about our own situation in Zambia?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: My ruling on the point of order which has just been raised by the hon. Member for Kalomo is that the hon. Deputy Minister is in order. He is debating. He may continue.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, thank you for your protection. Sir, we are looking at a country which has good relations with us, which also…

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

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Major Chizhyuka: Mr Speaker, I rise on a very serious point of order. I seek your most serious ruling on whether The Post Editor is in order to attack a Member of this House and in the process cast aspersions on the integrity of the whole House.

Mr Speaker, I am referring to the editorial comment of Saturday, 24th February, 2007, headlined, ‘Lifting the standard of MPs’ and I quote, 

“But what we are seeing from our politicians is increasing desperation, lack of seriousness and purpose and in some respects, childishness and high levels of irresponsibility.”

Mr Speaker, I am aware of the comments you made after the debate on this matter. Not withstanding your comments, would the Editor of the Post Newspaper still be in order to say what he has said about this House, thereby, opening floodgates for ridicule of the whole House as exemplified by the letter appearing in The Post Newspaper of yesterday, 26th February 2007 and I quote,

“The self centeredness, greed and shallowness coming from the National Assembly are frightening. Parliament does not offer any hope for this country. The current National Assembly is a parasitic institution that has little or no value to the collect hopes and dreams of the Zambian people. Parliament has become a den of hyenas, head and belly dragging people, masquerading as representatives of the people.  Time has come for the Zambian people to raise the standard of the way we ought to be governed.”

Mr Speaker, would he be in order to say what he has said when Hon. Ntundu never mentioned any newspaper editor in his general debate. Is he the one who bought a big house, erased it and built a mansion in its place? Hon. Ntundu said that some of these editors promote tribalism. Is he the one promoting tribalism or is he the one who specialises in calling other people, including the Head of State, ‘stupid and brainless’ descriptions that are now coming to the entire House? Arising from that opinion of Saturday, 24th February, 2007, we have seen the beginning of a protected insidious onslaught on the integrity of this House orchestrated by the Editor of The Post New

Mr Speaker, in The Post Newspaper of 26th  February, 2007 it was written and I quote:

“Parliament has become a den of hyenas and belly dragging people masquerading as representatives of the people.” End of quote.

Sir, in today’s Post, we are called petty, visionless and senseless.

Mr Speaker, does this House constitute of hyenas, visionless senseless and many such terms.

Mr Speaker, I beg your ruling on this matter.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chzhyuka laid the paper on the Table.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member for Namwala has raised a clear point of order on the contents of certain issues of The Post Newspaper.

My ruling on that point of order is as follows:

This country is governed under a numbers of laws which have been passed in this House in the past and even now. These laws are designed to ensure that every citizen and every resident of this country is given sufficient room in which to live and operate without fear of intimidation from any quarter.

This House itself is guaranteed freedom of speech from the Republican Constitution as specific articles in the Constitution gave birth to the Act of Parliament Cap. 12 dealing with the powers and privileges of hon. Members of Parliament in this House to ensure that what they say in this house is protected. The other laws that have been made also protect the freedom of speech and other freedoms that protect persons who are outside this House.

Towards the end of the Ninth Parliament, I made an elaborate ruling on a matter of this nature and I suggest that since the ruling is part of the compiled verbatim record, hon. Members of Parliament should access that ruling in which I cited many authorities. I served a notice that while outsiders also have their own freedom of speech, this House equally enjoys freedom of speech.  You could call it right versus right.

Now, because of that situation, hon. Members of Parliament and members of the public outside this Parliament must stop provoking each other. If that game, if you can call it such, of hide and seek continues, that kind of game will not end peacefully.

I believe the House will recall my ruling on this mater last week that we in this House need the media to communicate what we debate to the public. I wish to add that the media also need us to make money out of what we say.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: I believe that anybody who may be interested in carrying out research will conclude that newspapers in particular, make more sales when this House is meeting because people are eager to know what we are saying here. Therefore, we would like to continue making money for them, but in the process they must be constructive as we make money for them.

I did say lat time that I was discouraging that kind of debate because the media cannot defend themselves on the Floor of this House. At the same time, the media should not consider themselves enjoying a field day out of what we say in here.

Therefore, arising from this symbiotic existence between this House and the media in particular and of course the people at large in general, I wish to call for a stop to this kind of skirmish between this House and the media. This must come to an end because when this sort of thing continues, there is no winner or losers. In fact, all of us are losers. Those who are understand the psychology of the media will agree that this ping pong kind of communication between this House and the media is not helpful.

To say the least, I was impressed when I got to know that there was a conference between the media and some hon. Members of Parliament over the weekend somewhere. I believed that, that is a healthy kind of approach to matters like this. You take one another outside the House where everybody is on fair ground. That is the place to do it. I hope that that kind of exchange, a summary of which you all read in the press was helpful.

Accordingly, I end by calling on both the hon. Members of this House and members of the media out there, not only to observe the truth, but to work and end this kind of hostility which is unhelpful to all. The hon. Member for Namwala has raised a valid point of order, but I hope that after what I have just said, you will not press this matter any further.

The Hon. Deputy Minister of Defence may continue.

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, before I was interrupted, I was explaining the significance of the China’s growing economy and the direct impact that it has to our economy. I was saying that because of China’s energy needs, we have found our copper a good guaranteed market. China’s three gorges dams generate about 17,000,000 KW of electricity which is sent throughout the country. The base conductor of that electricity is copper which is mined here in Zambia.

Sir, I also said that China is moving from …

Mr Kasongo: On a point of order!

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Kasongo: Mr Speaker, is it in order for the Minister of Finance and National Planning not to stop the lightening that is happening in this House, especially one at the back where he is seated? I need your serious ruling.


Mr Speaker: Frankly, the Chair is unaware of the basis of that point of order which has been raised by the hon. Member of Parliament for Bangweulu. I do not see what he is referring to. Is he referring to the flickering of the microphones around the Chamber?

Hon. Government Members: Microphones!

Mr Speaker: That appears to be a technical difficulty which I hope will not totally disable this House from conducting its business. Can you hear me?

Hon. Members: Yes!

Mr Speaker: I can hear the Hon. Deputy Minister of Defence, but I hope that flickering, which I saw around this Chamber will be taken care of.

The Hon. Deputy Minister of Defence may continue.

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, the good economic days that have been acknowledged in this country are as a result of several factors. I will say a few such as the political will of the President in his wish to see corruption eradicated from this country.

The other factor that has influenced the economic gains we are enjoying in this country is combined good work of the Executive including the civil service. The good work of the Minister of Finance and National Planning and his team and the good work of the Bank of Zambia Governor, who was recently awarded an international banker of the year award. This is an international award in recognition of his works to turning around the economy of this country.

Ms Mumbi: To his family!

Mr Akakandelwa: Mr Speaker, as we debate the budget, we should all be mindful of the fact that there is only one source of money. Therefore, as we strive to increase certain expenses, we should be mindful that there is a limit to this money. The Ministry of Finance and National Planning may not have a blank cheque to give to everybody to fill in whatever they want to see happening in their respective constituencies.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Sir, I have every reason to believe that the targets we have set to achieve this year will be achieved. We have seen inflation going down, interest rates lowering, exchange rates stabilising and a general growth in the economy.

Above all, we have international good will from top class leaders. It is only three days ago that our own President was personally invited by the President of France, and a month or so ago, he had gone to China and there was a reciprocal visit from the Chinese Government.

Mr Speaker, I want us to focus on the disaster that has befallen us this year. As we deliberate the budget, there will be need to consider unprecedented events and probably do the right adjustments to mitigate the disaster that has befallen us.

In future, as we strive to meet the fifteen Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), and when I look them, I find that we are nowhere to meeting them, it is my earnest hope that we have to change the way we approach our budgetary process. In that, in a given a year, I would suggest that we pick a significant project and allocate a big chunk of money to it. For example, we pick one area and say this year alone we will dedicate this year to the provision of water in all the rural areas of Zambia. At the end of the year we will have something to talk about and we will have gone towards meeting some of the Millennium Development Goals.

Mr Speaker, let me now talk about State House. State House is in the budget in two ways. The first is money allocated to it for rehabilitation and that is in order because State House is a dignified institution which does not belong to anyone, but to the people of Zambia. It is the image of Zambia and in any case it needs to be kept clean because cleanliness is next to godliness. We need to keep State House in tip top condition because that is where we host international visitors and it projects our image as a nation.

Secondly, Sir, I want to refer to the K1 billion which has been allocated for construction of the current President’s retirement house. It is in order because this Government plans and knows that the current President, because of the provisions in the Constitution, will have to leave after five years and so it is only right that we begin to think about his retirement. Mr Speaker, for what he has done for this country and for his credibility and willingness to vacate State House, we will respond by giving him a house, and hopefully by 2011, the house will be ready.

Mr Speaker, I know that there has been reference to houses of previous heads of state, but those too, as far as I am concerned are under construction. I would like to say that perhaps, the reasons why they were not constructed in the past is that there must have been reactors to leaving State House, but this Government will look after that.

Mr Speaker, with this catalogue of invents and successes that we have recorded in this country, I have no doubt that this budget with the support from the House should transform Zambia from stability to improved service delivery.

I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Major Chibamba (Shiwang’andu): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the debate on the Motion.

Mr Speaker, I find it extremely difficult to attempt to support the budget in its current form. There are a number of issues hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning that were overlooked in your presented document, the first one being the status of our legal tender, the Kwacha.

Mr Speaker, no attempt has been made to try and care for the purchasing power of the Kwacha. Mr Speaker, there are very few people in this country that are privileged to use the foreign currency as a medium of exchange for the purchase of goods and services. People in Liuwa, Sinazongwe, Namwala, Shiwang’andu, and Chama North have not seen the dollar. They do not even know that the dollar does exist. Is it not inconsiderate that in a country like ours which is said to have come from stability to improved service delivery, our people cannot use K1,000 to buy their basic provisions and get back with some change?

Mr Speaker, can it be said that the British and Americans who trade in dollar or pound sterling are the only people in the world who care about their currency? The variations between the pound sterling and the dollar have been steadily maintained. Mr Speaker, I have not come across anything that talks about the status of the kwacha. The kwacha is an important currency to Zambia and to Zambians. The kwacha is supposed to be strengthened steadily and so how do we comprehend the issue of the dollar or Zambia earning so many dollars and which dollars never come back here?

Mr Speaker, the dollars the country is making do not come here. People who are being paraded as investors, many of whom walk the streets of Lusaka and Ndola dressed in prison uniforms are saying they are investors. A person who has come to this country and is producing eggs or is keeping pigs is either a poultry farmer or just a farmer and not an investor. Surely the Deputy Minister from Chisamba constituency will agree with me that the farmers in Chisamba are farmers and they cannot change into investors. I have a scenario in my constituency where people whose grandparents lived there are now calling themselves investors. What have they invested in?

Mr Speaker, this usage of the word ‘investor’ has actually created a lot of fears in the minds of the workers on the Copperbelt. They see a person arriving in the country without even a suitcase at least, Mr Phiri from Salisbury came back with a suitcase. That person who arrives in the country without a suitcase is the following day behind a counter selling pieces of Chikanda and the other day he is an investor. I do not agree with that kind of situation hon. Minister, we are just making ourselves look inferior to these people.  Mr Speaker, the issue of saying if you tell an investors this and that, you are going to chase them away, to where? Mr Speaker, some people who have come here are surplus to the requirement in their own countries.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: So, Sir, where will they go to? If today I am chased from somewhere, I will come back to Zambia because there is enough space and room for me. Mr Speaker, if I am Zambian like the hon. Member for Namwala would care, he would certainly look after me in Namwala.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: I will not be called an investor, but a livestock farmer. 


Major Chibamba: I certainly do not agree with all these things that are happening. The macro-economics of this nation are best understood by those who are privileged to know about them. It is not the macro-economics that are important to a Zambian. Worse hon. Minister, the Zambian on the periphery of Chilanga Constituency is looking for fertiliser, seed …

Hon. Opposition Member interjected.

Major Chibamba: … not at all. Where I come from we hardly use animals for ploughing.


Mr Sikatana: You use it as munani.


Major Chibamba: Yes, part of it hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs is munani, but even mbonyi is maize …

Mr Lubinda: It is also chewed.

Major Chibamba: … can also be eaten.


Major Chibamba: The point I am trying to bring out is that, we are making our people believe that without China this country cannot function.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: That is wrong because we have all the wealth here.

Hon. Opposition Members: Yes.

Major Chibamba: The Chinese have come, so what? You do not have to make it so pronounced as if this world is going to shake because of the Chinese. What is $800 million?

Hon. Opposition Member: Nothing.

Major Chibamba: Is a national …

Hon. Government Member interjected.

Major Chibamba: … wait. Mr Speaker, $800 million sounds like a lot of money because people are hearing about $800 million for the first time.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear! Bauze mudala.

Major Chibamba: You change that into kwacha. The kwacha will not give you anything. Yes, I have no quarrel with the Governor of the Bank of Zambia being decorated. Decorations can come anytime. I am sure that I am also entitled to decorations for the work I have done in the past.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: So, is everybody here, but the point I am trying to bring home is that of the kwacha. All of us hon. Members of Parliament, nobody should look at me and think that I am just talking for the sake of talking. All of us are effected one way or the other.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: Who can tell me that there were people in Kalabo …

Mr Muteteka: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

The hon. Deputy Minister for the Ministry of Lands (Mr Muteteka): Mr Speaker, I rarely rise on points of order. I am raising a very serious point of order. Is the Member of Parliament in order to describe farmers in Chisamba the way he has when actually these farmers in Chisamba are local investors who have added value to the lives of people in Chisamba. I am aware that he is the owner of the company called Tomorrow Investments which was given a contract by the Ministry of Education and he has abandoned that contract and today pupils in Chisamba are suffering. I need a very serious ruling because he wants to portray as if local investors do not add value to the economy of this country. Is he in order?

Mr Speaker: The hon. Deputy Minister for the Ministry of Lands is persuading the hon. Member for Shiwang’andu to see his point of view, that, there are also local investors. It is up to the hon. Member for Shiwang’andu to debate that issue if he so wishes. Please continue.

Major Chibamba: Thank you, Mr Speaker. First of all, the hon. Deputy Minister of Lands has his facts the other way round. I do not own any company by that name. Secondly, issues of personal business should not dominate the issues on the Floor of the House.

Hon. Opposition members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: Thirdly, the Government from time to time may not have money to pay the contractor. As a Zambian, this is why I am talking about the prisoners that are masquerading in this country being called investors.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: Mr Speaker, as a Zambian contractor which is not that company the hon. Minister is referring to …

Hon. Government Member: I got it in the Mashinga.

Major Chibamba: No, but even if you got it in the Mashinga you do not have any facts at all.


Major Chibamba: I think that pettiness must be left out.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: I do business with Government and I have been doing so in the most humble manner since 1987, with the Kaunda Government, Chiluba Government and Mwanawasa Government because I am entitled.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: When my Government does not have the money to pay my company I will not pull out and go back to China.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: I will stay here.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: I appreciate the limitations that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning will from time to time encounter when collective revenue out of which he pays contractors and suppliers. I am loyal to my nation. I am patriotic and universal. That is why I am talking about Kalabo because I have been there.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: They are very few hon. Members here who have travelled the way I have travelled.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hear, hear!

Hon. Opposition Member: Voka.

Major Chibamba: Talking about the pontoon in this country.

Hon. Government Member interjected.

Major Chibamba: No, from Chitokoloki, okay. I am talking about the budget. The issue of the farmers in Chisamba being called farmers is very much in order. This is because if people want to call somebody a contractor he is a contractor.

Hon. Opposition Members: Yes.

Major Chibamba: What is bad in this country now is that the moment a Zambian engages in business with Government, immediately, his name becomes synonymous with wrong doing

Hon. Opposition Member: Koma nga ebo.

Major Chibamba: I know, Mr Speaker, I was in Eastern Province two weeks ago. There is a road between Nyimba and Petauke left on by some some some some.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: The hon. Minister of Works and Supply will agree with me that sand is very hard to compact and shoulders cannot be compacted or made out of this sand.

Hon. Opposition Member: It is an equation.

Major Chibamba: You have to use quality gravel because gravel has elasticity and sand does not have. It must contain a certain amount of moisture in order for it to bond. The road from Nyimba to Katete, the shoulders are gone. Nobody has ever talked about it.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: I am saying that as a Zambian, I am entitled to do business with my Government. In any case, there are conditions that are set out in the contract which the parties of that contract must oblige to. The Government has its own conditions. The contractor has the conditions fulfilled and the consultant too.

Hon. Government Member: Talk about the budget.

Major Chibamba: I am talking about the budget. Some of us Zambians have struggled from 1999 to-date and I am still owed billions by the Government. Is that fair? If our companies are not paid, how will we do our jobs?

Hon. Opposition Member: Asukeni ba Magande.

Major Chibamba: So much by the Chinese. They are either princes or whatever.

Mr Speaker, I would like to talk about the …

Ms Njapau: On a point of order, Sir.


Mr Speaker: Order! I shall allow only one more point of order. Thereafter, I work.

A point of order is raised.

Ms Njapau: Mr Speaker, is Hon. Chibamba in order to continue talking about the Chinese, and yet he was a Deputy Minister in the Government, who supported Chinese Investment at the time?


Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member for Shiwang’andu may continue, please.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: Mr Speaker, I would like to talk about some sectors in our economy, which have been said to have performed poorly. One of which is the construction industry. The Budget Speech on Page 3, Paragraph 21, says and I quote:

‘Construction industry registered a decrease of growth from 21.2 per cent in 2005 to 9 per cent in 2006.’

Sir, this is of great concern, not only to me or to hon. Members of Parliament on the Opposition, but also the Government. Any sector or sub-sector which registers a decrease or decline raises great concern. However, I have no reason not to say what I am going to say. I have seen a lot of interest being shown by the hon. Minister of Works and Supply, Mr Simbao. He is on record to have gone to the foot bridge and made a statement which was very correct. He also went to former President Kaunda’s house and made an equally important statement. I want to encourage him to continue doing that because what we do not know is that politicians are seen to be the most corrupt people. Below you, you do not know what goes on. Below the hon. Minister, there is a Permanent Secretary and directors. You are carrying a burden which you did not create. What you are doing hon. Minister is highly commendable.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: I would like you to continue and go further.

Sir, the other point is on the National Council for Construction (NCC) Act. It is not meant to penalise Zambians. It is meant to streamline the workings in that particular sub-sector. Further, I would like to say that it is high time the hon. Minister thought about paying consultants in equal performance bond as the contractor. There is so much under hand methods being played, which you may not know and I am telling you now, through the Chair. It is important that this country moves from where we are to somewhere. The benefits that we accrue in this particular sub-sector are for Zambians as a whole.

Mr Speaker, I would like to talk about the many obstacles in form of pontoons. I have in mind North Western Province. This is Chitokoloko, Lukulu, Watopa and so on. This is a very important issue. There is also Samfya Pontoon, Mbesuma, Chiawa and so on. I am making an earnest appeal to the hon. Minister and the Government as a whole to develop a deliberate policy to make sure that all the pontoons are done away with.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Major Chibamba: Faced with a calamity, His Honour the Vice–President has been missing from the House and we have missed him. He went out to take care of the disaster situation brought about by unfavourable weather conditions. In some cases, if you went to places I have just mentioned, you would not cross into Kalabo, Chinsali, Chama and so on. I would like to talk about the issue of a Beit Bridge. A Beit Bridge by description in the military terms, I am sure General Dr Chituwo and others will agree with me, are accessories of a bridge, which is of a temporally nature. How can we put a Beit Bridge over Chama? Nkalamabwe was a different thing. Even when people have done the work, things are collapsing.

Mr Speaker, finally, I would like to say that it is important to build houses for the three Presidents. At least start with former President Kaunda, former President Chiluba and then President Mwanawasa. This will make a lot of sense. We should not politicise these issues. They are constitutional in nature.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

The Minister of Works and Supply (Mr Simbao): Mr Speaker, I am grateful for giving me this opportunity to debate the motion on the Floor. To start with, I want to state that I appreciate the criticism coming from the other side of the House. This is because, at times, this is the only way to make things better because it is in certain cases, nothing is complete by itself. However, I think we should concentrate more on constructive than destructive criticism.

Sir, sometimes, I tend to think that nothing is done right from the Government side and yet a lot is being done for the benefit of the whole country particularly this year. This Budget has come from the very bottom of the President and the Government’s heart. A lot has been put into this Budget to see how most of the concerns that the people raised could be taken care of. For example, Pay-As-You-Earn (PAYE) seemed not to satisfy many people. This has been reduced just like the way people wanted it to be. However, what is coming out is that the reduction is not sufficient. Some people think that not taxing up to K2 million might satisfy more Zambians, but money issues do not work like that. It is not the quantity, but the value of that money. Somebody can have K1, 000 and if it has value, it can buy almost everything he needs. We need to increase production so that our Kwacha gains value.

Mr Speaker, the President increased the subsidies on fertilisers. As most of us know, the bigger population lives in rural areas. This has affected most of our people. It has made their burden lighter. I was in my constituency and I must say the farmers are very happy. If it were not for the bad rains this year we were going to have another bumper harvest.

Mr Speaker I want to talk about roads. The budget that has been allocated to roads is K787 billion. Out of this, K364 billion will be Government contribution through fuel, levy and direct contribution. Obviously, it is not enough, but under the circumstances, I commend the hon. Minister of Finance for being considerate.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Simbao: I know it was a big problem to share the money available and he did what was possible for this particular section. This K364 billion is divided into two portions. The amount of K220 billion from the fuel levy will be applied on district, urban, rural and park roads. As you know, this is the bulk of our roads. This money by itself is not enough and, as such, we could not do most of the roads that hon. Members would have liked us to do. In most cases, we have just concentrated on on-going projects. We had to do very few big projects. The K144 billion, that is, direct Government contribution for the trunk and main roads. This is the portion where we shall do the bigger roads like the Mutanda/Kabompo, Kasama/Luwingu, Choma/Chitongo roads and many other roads.

Mr Muntanga: Bottom Road!

Mr Simbao: If we can use all this money on one road, for example, the Mutanda/Kabompo Road, we can do 100 kilometres this year and that will only leave us with another 100 kilometres to reach Kabompo. Unfortunately, that is not the way we spread this money. In the manner that we have spread this money, we shall just do 20 kilometres of each of these major roads. Now, if we work on 20 kilometres on a 242 kilometres stretch, we will not get anywhere and it means it will take 10 years to complete the Mutanda/Kabompo Road. It also means that it will take 5 years to work on the Kasama/Luwingu Road. Unfortunately, this is how this money will be spent this year. However, if we agree and make a movement on these roads and know the roads that we have been struggling tocomplete, some of them since 1991 like the Mutanda/Chavuma Road, we can complete one or two roads per year and this would do us a lot of good.

Mr Speaker, I am glad to report that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning has finally put some substantial amount of money on the Bottom Road. He has allocated K6 billion.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Simbao: Mr Speaker, this is a very big movement and we must commend the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning. This road is a shame. It is marked on our map as a district road, but if you had the opportunity to go and see this district road, you will find that it is not there. There is no road, not even the people that live there know it and I challenge most of the hon. Members who come from there. I doubt how many people have been there to see this road in its entirety. I think they are very few. I think they just get to the beginning and they are sure this is where the Bottom Road used to be and they come here and say Bottom Road, Bottom Road.


Mr Simbao: I challenge them to go and travel on that road like I did. There was no road. We had to look for it. Even those people who were telling us that they know where it is did not know. We got lost. We missed it by 20 kilometres because no one knew where the actual road was. It is really a disaster that we should have a district road and keep it in that state. I am glad that for the first time, a substantial amount of K6 billion has been allocated for this road. At least, we are going to make a road from Chipepo to Sinazeze and this is just the beginning. May be with time, we can reach Mapatizya and Siavonga.

Mr Speaker, I am also glad to mention that an amount of K1 billion has been allocated in this budget for feasibility studies on the Kanyala/Nakonde/Mpulungu Road. I want to report that this road which is supposed to link Lake Tanganyika and Lake Mweru was first discussed and agreed upon in 1998 and both countries committed to tar this road. Our friends in Malawi are already tarring their section. We have not even started. We did a feasibility study in 1998 and it went to gather dust. Now, the financiers are still willing to have this connection done and they are asking us to at least carry out a feasibility study because it has taken too long since we carried the first feasibility study in 1998. A lot of things have changed. I am glad that K1 billion has been allocated this year which, if we carry out this feasibility study and present it to the financiers, it is possible that we can start tarring Mpulungu to Kanyala Road maybe in 2009. I am grateful again to the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning.

Sir, I want to talk about the leaders’ houses and I completely agree with hon. Chibamba in his submission. However, I want to say that at the level Dr. Kaunda’s house has reached, if we continue having consistent funding, Dr. Kaunda can live in that house this June. It is really just a question of having more money.

Now, we do not need to wait for 2008 to start building Dr. Chiluba’s house, no. We have to plan for it now and I want to say here that we have already given Dr. Chiluba the house designs. He has looked at it and requested for audience because I am sure he wants to make a few changes. If it was not for the bereavement that happened, I am sure by now, Dr. Chiluba would have looked at the designs of his house. We know that Dr. Kaunda’s house is making good progress. We need to start looking for Dr. Chiluba’s land now and if we find it, and that money we have put in the budget is given, we will start building his house. There is no reason why we should wait until we finish Dr. Kaunda’s house because these two things are not really married as such. It is not a question of finishing this one before we start another one. People must understand that Dr. Kaunda left the post of President 15 years ago. When he left that post, he was supposed to immediately move in his own house built by this Government and not to live for 15 years in a rented house. Now Dr. Chiluba has been living in a rented house for 6 years. It is a big shame. We should not do the same to Mr Mwanawasa.


Mr Simbao: Right now, we have the means and capacity…


Mr Speaker: Order!

Mr Simbao: … we want all those people who know how to construct roads to come and show us how we can do it using Zambian materials not imported materials. We want to know how we can construct roofing rods using our own materials wherever they are in Zambia.

Therefore, we are signing out this symposium that is going to expose all these roads that we did not know how to construct. We hope that with these few steps that we are trying to take it is going to assist most of the hon. Members of Parliament with their road construction and maintenance in their constituencies.

Mr Speaker, I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Minister of Science, Technology and Vocational Training (Dr Chituwo): Mr Speaker, I thank you for this opportunity to contribute to the policy debate on the Budget ably presented by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning.

Mr Speaker, I will start by commending the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning for presenting to this House a Budget that is forward looking and gives hope for continued growth of our country. The theme as we are all aware of the Budget is from Stability to Improved Service Delivery. It is indeed one that gives matching orders to those of us who are in Government. We are not relaxing in anyway. Our call is to match forward and offer the services that our citizens need.

Mr Speaker, consistent with the theme of this year’s Budget, the House may wish to know that the Ministry of Science, Technology and Vocational Training is geared to deliver on this theme. The Government through my ministry will work to make technical and vocational skills training relevant to economic development and poverty reduction. We shall, therefore, continue developing new curricula for our various programmes offered by our skills training institutions in order to empower our people with knowledge and skills. Entrepreneurship skills training will be part and parcel of all the training programmes in our country. For we believe that the integration and mainstreaming of the entrepreneurship development in all training programmes is a direct contribution to private sector development. The training system contributes to the development of individuals who have a relatively high potential for creating new businesses and enterprises.

We have a little while ago, the plan by the Ministry of Works and Supply to train these young people in a particular field which will contribute to wealth creation and poverty reduction.

My Government will continue to develop policies and implement measures that will target enhancing of skills of the private sector with a particular focus on value addition and empowering entrepreneurs.

Mr Speaker, in line with the concept of national development planning which the Government has adopted, my ministry will finalise the development of the National Skills Development Plan (NSDP). The NSDP will provide a coherent plan for critical skills that should meet the current and future demands of our labour market in Zambia. Already, we have marked out the skills needs in the mining sector in the next three to five years.

We are confident with the clear skills development plan, our investments in training will become more relevant to facilitating national economic development in so far as human development is concerned.

Mr Speaker, my Government believes that a strong, dynamic and sustainable scientific research undertaking is a foundation for social-economic development.

However, it is observed that throughout the developing and developed world, the growth and development of science and technology sector is dependent on both public and private investments. It is with this in mind that the Government is facilitating and encouraging public private partnerships in research and development by linking the private sector with the research institutions. Given that right encouragement and environment, the private sector can garner the resources they need to bring Zambian innovations from research laboratories to the production line. We want a private sector that is capable of translating scientific discoveries into products and services. When the private sector begins capturing both the fruits of the available intellectual capital in our universities and research institutions, as well as supporting the ingenuity of Zambia inventors, and turning them into marketable products and services, the role we want science and technology to play in our development will become a reality.

Mr Speaker, to encourage increased awareness and participation of school pupils into science and technology in order to promote equity, the ministry facilitates the holding of science fora and technological exhibitions. This facilitation includes contributions to the Budget of the Annual JETS fair’s contribution to the Budget and participation in annual National Science Technology Council, science fora and technology exhibitions that encourages the participation of secondary schools, universities and research and development institutions in our country. The ministry facilitates disbursement of funds to the budget of the science camp for secondary schools.

Mr Speaker, during the Women’s of International Day of each year, the ministry carries out ‘Gender Outreach’ activities, to sensitise pupils in secondary schools and the importance of studying mathematics and science subjects. In this outreach, the ministry donates science books and other learning materials, to respective schools, apart from the talk that is given by some ‘role models’ in the science and technology sector.

Mr Speaker, that there has been consistent growth of more than 5 per cent per year is no doubt. The challenge for all of us is to see translation of this economic growth into improved living standards of the majority of our people. The improvement in the standard of living calls for our people to develop a culture of hard work in whatever they do. On our part, as Executive, we have signed social contracts to assist our people improve their standards of living. True to this improvement, is the introduction by our Government of the Fifth National Development Plan and the Vision 2030.

Mr Speaker, as a ministry, we are grateful that the funding to our ministry has had an increase, modest as it might be. Sir, every journey starts with one step. I am confident that in the years to come, more resources will be made available to the Ministry of Science Technology and Vocational Training.

That is one side of the story. On the other, there is need that whatever resources are allocated to us, these are used prudently and this, we plan and commit ourselves to do in the Ministries of Science and Technology and Vocation Training.

We cannot develop all at once. What is important is to be consistent and carrying out the plans that we have set for ourselves. This budget offers that hope for economic development and wealth creation.

Mr Speaker, I support the motion and would like to persuade the whole House to support this motion.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources (Mr Pande): Mr Speaker, I thank you for according me this opportunity to contribute to the motion on the Floor of the House. First and foremost, allow me to congratulate the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning for presenting a well balanced national budget which demonstrates the Government’s commitment to national development and poverty alleviation.

It is noteworthy that following the launch of the Fifth National Development Plan, the 2007 budget has already been aligned to the objectives and priorities of the Fifth National Development Plan which outlines the country’s short to medium-term development aspirations.

Sir, formulation of the budget based on the Fifth National Development Plan, further, underscores the Government’s desire to make public expenditure more transparent and provide a basis for measuring and assessing Government’s performance.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Pande: This year’s budget is also a clear testimony of the MMD Government’s commitment. Indeed, a lot of issues that affect our people have been discussed and brought out at different platforms, including during last year’s election campaigns. The budget has addressed many of these concerns. These include a reduction in the Pay-As-You-Earn tax regime which will provide some relief to our people and result in more disposable income.

The other area in which the 2007 budget has responded positively …

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hour until 1630 hours.

Mr Speaker: When I suspended business the House was considering the motion moved by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning that the House now resolve into Committee of Supply on the Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure for the year, 1st January, 2007 to 31st December 2007 presented to the National Assembly in February 2007 and the hon. Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources was debating. Before, he resumes his debate, I believe not all Members of the Executive, meaning the Cabinet are ready to reply, that being the case, we shall be getting back and forth to our cross country debate.

Mr Pande: I thank you, Mr Speaker, for allowing me to continue where I ended.

Sir, this year’s budget is also a clear testimony of the MMD being a responsible Government. Indeed, a lot of issues that affect our people have been discussed and brought out at different platforms including during last year’s election campaigns. The budget has addressed many of these concerns. These include a reduction in the Pay-As-You-Earn which will provide some relief to our people and result in more disposable income.

The other area in which the 2007 budget has responded positively to the cries of our people is in the increased budgetary allocations to the health and education sectors. Not only will this increase the provision of the requisites in our schools and medicines in our hospitals, but it will also address the concerns on shortage of teachers and medical staff.

Sir, further, there is increased budgetary allocation to the rural sector for feeder road construction and rehabilitation as well as an increase in the fertiliser subsidy to small-scale farmers, all aimed at poverty alleviation and wealth creation.

Mr Speaker, I must hasten to say that not all issues that affect our people can be addressed at once. There is, however, no doubt that this year’s budget has provided the necessary foundation on which the many social ills that affect our people can be addressed.

Let me elaborate this important point further since there has been some extravagant suggestions coming from some hon. Members which are somewhat misleading. They are misleading to the nation in the sense that these hon. Members are, in essence, suggesting that the 2007 budget should have sought to resolve all the problems that this country faces. It goes without saying that such suggestions are unrealistic.

Sir, let us take for instance, the issue of tax, which seems to be the only vocabulary in the language of some people. This progressive Budget has proposed to increase the monthly money taxable threshold from K320, 000 last year to K500,000 this year. This means that the Government will lose revenue amounting to K211.7 billion this year. However, some members were, instead, suggesting a threshold of K1 million which if implemented would result in revenue loss to the tune of K900 billion.

Mr Speaker, the other implications of such a measure would have been the reductions on current allocations of priority programmes that have openly supported programs such as the Fertilizer Support Programme, the Feeder Roads Rehabilitation Programme, the Strategic Food Reserve Programme and indeed the Tourism Development Credit Facility under my ministry.

Mr Speaker, there are also suggestions from some hon. Members of Parliament that the Value Added Tax (VAT) currently at rate at 17.5 per cent should have been reduced because it was the highest in the region. To the contrary, our VAT rate is lower compared to, say, Tanzania at 20 per cent and Uganda at 18 per cent.

Mr Speaker, these countries reached the HIPC Completion Point before us. I can go on to show how some of these suggestions are defective, misleading and indeed unrealistic. Suffice to mention, this is a Budget that transacts all segments of our society and must therefore, be supported by hon. Members of Parliament for this House irrespective of political affiliations.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, I wish to appeal to some of our colleagues to rise above partisan politics and support national issues as has been ably articulated in this year’s Budget. Indeed, the Government welcomes constructive criticism from the Opposition as it helps to keep Government on track in the implementation of policies and programmes.

Mr Speaker, this Government does not fear criticism. It invites constructive criticism. We want them to keep us on our toes in the implementation of this Budget once it is passed. That is what we want.

Mr Speaker, the performance of the New Deal Government in stablising the economy is unprecedented. Let us take for example, the nose diving inflation and bank interest rates this country has experienced since 2002. With the proposed measures to reduce domestic Government borrowing to 1.2 per cent of GDP and to further tighten controls on expenditures by reducing non-priority expenditure our conviction is that the inflation rate target of 5 per cent is achievable.

Mr Speaker, I have heard some Members allude to these figures as being merely theories. Any economy in the world which has succeeded or that is moving forward bases its’ planning on these figures. We cannot throw out these figures because they are very important. I will urge hon. Members of Parliament who feel these figures are merely figures to re-think and start analysing these figures. They are very important for any Government or any economy to move forward. I would like therefore, to appeal to the Zambians to take advantage of the stable macro-economic environment and the positive future economic outlook to begin investing in the domestic economy. The notion that an investor is always a foreigner must be dispelled with the contempt it deserves because it is counter-productive. We need to understand that foreign investors will further be driven into investing in Zambia if the locals exhibit confidence to invest in their own economy. I urge my fellow countrymen to shift towards long term investments instead of the pursuit of quick gains through short term investments.

Mr Speaker to this effect, this year’s Budget provides for concessions under the Zambia Development Agency Act which should not only be attractive to investors from abroad, but also to home grown investors. We should not confine ourselves to the periphery of the economy when this listening Government is doing all it can to level the playing field.

Mr Speaker, in addition, the Government has for the fourth and third year running provided funding to recapitalise the Tourism and Forestry Development Credit Facilities respectively. These credit facilities were established to empower local Zambians with affordable financing to participate in running tourism and forest based enterprises for wealth creation and poverty reduction. So far, loans have been accessed by successful applicants from all parts of the country. This has had a trickle down effect in terms of employment creation and has resulted in improvements in the standards of living of the people.

Mr Speaker, the steady reduction in interest rates is a positive development as affordable financing will become more accessible to our people for investment in productive sectors of our economy. The introduction of credit bureau is particularly laudable as it will assist many credible Zambians to access loans from financial institutions without undue prejudice or being potential defaulters.

Mr Speaker, all these positive developments will have no impact if the people’s attitude towards work remains the same. There is need to take advantage of the many investment opportunities that abound in this country by firstly, improving our work culture and what contribution each one of us can make at a personal level including us as hon. Members of Parliament. The aggregate improvements at the personal level will surely result in positive impacts at the national level. In other words, economic growth at our personal level will result in a sustainable economic growth at national level and not vice-versa.

Mr Speaker, I would like to appeal to all hon. Members of the House to rally behind the implementation of the 2007 Budget in order to consolidate the economic games attained in the past years. It has been recognised that the private sector will continue to be the main drivers of the economy. It is, therefore, important that we continue to provide the favourable climate for private sector development as an engine for economic growth. All barriers to private sector development as identified in the Private Sector Development Programme are being addressed expediently.

Mr Speaker, the Government is mindful that there can be no sustainable economic development if the natural resource base on which development depends is compromised. As a result, the Government has allocated K103.3 billion for the environmental protection function. This allocation will go towards pollution abatement, waste management and other environmental protection activities.

Mr Speaker, this is commendable as environmental protection and economic development are inextricably linked. There can be no sustainable economic development without environmental protection.

Sir, before I conclude, let me refer to two other issues which are in the Budget. This is regarding the allocation for the refurbish work at State House. Although other members have already spoken about this, I just want to appeal to the hon. Members of Parliament to look at State House as a national asset. Let us not look at the individual who is in that House. Let us look at the House as our personal asset. We should actually be complaining about the state we see it in and not condemn the allocation to State House.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, the other issue is the issue of a house for His Excellency President Levy Mwanawasa SC. We need to plan. If mistakes were made in the past, we should not make the same mistakes. This Government is not happy that to date Dr Kaunda is not in his own house. The Government is also not happy that Dr Chiluba is not in his house. We do not want that situation to continue. The ideal situation is that when Dr Kaunda and Dr Chiluba left State House they should have moved straight into their houses. We want President Mwanawasa to move into his house when he leaves office.

Sir, let me give an example of the pyramids in Egypt. For those who do not know those are actually graves for the old Kings of Egypt. Immediately somebody ascended to the kingdom, they started constructing pyramids for them. Therefore, the ideal situation for homes is that we would want at the time our Presidents are leaving office to move in those offices. Let us not look at President Mwanawasa as an individual.

Mr Speaker, in conclusion, the people who put us in this House expect nothing short of all of us hon. Members to support this progressing budget so that together we begin the process of implementing it and make a meaningful impact on the lives of all Zambians. We should not underrate the intelligence of the people who elected us whether we are on the left side of the Speaker or on the right side. They are watching us. Let us not carry out instructions from people who are outside this House.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Mwanza (Solwezi West): Mr Speaker, in the first instance, allow me to thank God our creator for the successful and peaceful campaign conducted in Solwezi West Constituency and the subsequent victory of our party the MMD on the 28th September, 2006.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, may I thank you, most sincerely for giving me this rare opportunity and honour to contribute to this very important motion moved by the hon. Member for Nyimba.

Mr Speaker, this is the motion for the Official Opening of Parliament by the President of the Republic of Zambia.

Mr Speaker, the success of the MMD in these elections was a clear testimony that Zambians did not want to experiment leadership at the high office.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, I therefore, wish to thank the people of Zambia for putting their heads together in rejecting the unsound policies of people who constantly preached about ridiculous and unrealistic 90 days ultimatums in the development strategy of our country.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, you may wish to know that North Western Province contributed over 130,000 votes to the Presidential votes thereby making the province a ‘ no go area’ for the sinking boat on a river to nowhere.


Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, I salute the people of North Western Province for re-electing our beloved President as this was the only way the people of North Western Province could say thank you to the visionary Head of State for bringing development to the once upon a time Cinderella Province.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, while I appreciate that the election results clearly showed that the time for change had come, I strongly submit that the MMD Government should work tirelessly to deliver the goods and services to the people of Zambia particularly those in rural areas who have suffered for a long time. The rural communities are looking for good feeder roads, good schools, an effective health delivery system and clean water and sanitation services. Failure to show commitments in these areas, the Government should expect strong resistance from rural communities countrywide during the next elections.

Mr Speaker, I now wish to join my hon. Friends who had spoken before me in congratulating you and the Deputy Speaker on you election to your esteemed positions. I also wish to congratulate the Deputy Chairman of Committees of the Whole House for his re-election. Further, allow me to take this opportunity to congratulate the re-election and election of hon. Members of Parliament for winning the competitive September 28th 2006 Tripartite Elections especially those from the MMD

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

.Mr Mwanza:  My heartfelt congratulations also go to the hon. Members who have been nominated to the august House.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, your diligence and dedication to your duties are the key factors to your bouncing back in this position. I therefore, have no doubt that with your guidance we will mature into formidable Parliamentarians. This House has thus placed tremendous confidence and trust in the three of you as our presiding officers and my considered opinion is that you will be able to guide this House to fruitful debates and quality point of order rulings from time to time like we have experienced.

Mr Speaker, at this stage, I wish to extend my gratitude and thanks to the President of our party and the National Executive Committee, Provincial District and Constituency Committees for adopting me to stand on the envious and prestigious MMD ticket.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, I would also like to take this opportunity to thank my dear wife Desi, family and friends and acquaintances for the moral and financial support rendered to me during the election campaign. The task of campaigning and winning the election was the biggest challenge in my life.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, in the same vein, I wish to extend a big thank you to the lovely people of Solwezi West Constituency for electing me as their area Member of Parliament after putting up a spirited fight during the just ended Tripartite Elections.

Mr Speaker, I wish also to take my hat off to the four Chiefs in my constituency namely; Chief Mumena, Matebo, Mukumbi and senior Chief Musele for the role they played in the respective areas. I pledge without reservations to perform and serve them to the best of my ability.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, I would also like to thank the Solwezi West Parliamentary campaign team comprising MESSRS John Samuneti, Frank Ntilima, Steven Soneka and Mrs Joyce Malundu, the lection and polling agents for a job well done during the campaign and at the polls.

Mr Mabenga: Very good!

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, the President’s Address to the House on Friday 27th October, 2006 was inspiring and raised pertinent issues, which in the final analysis, presented hope for the development agenda for our country.

Mr Speaker, the people of Zambia especially those in rural areas are facing a lot of hardships. Therefore, we as their representatives feel and see the decline in the standard of living for the rural communities. To this end, the New Deal Government should endeavour to pay back for the majority votes it received from rural areas by embracing their development aspirations in the National Budget for this year. I believe that this has been adequately covered.

Mr Speaker, this situation should be tackled vigorously before it engulfs us. Zambians are desperate for development and it is up to the party in power to restore hope and a sense of belonging to mother Zambia.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwanza: Mr Speaker, allow me now to make a few comments and observations on my constituency which may also be relevant to the other rural constituencies in the country. Although the people in the constituency are hard-working peasant farmers, I regret to say that Solwezi West Constituency has been neglected in terms of development. As you are aware, the constituency has been neglected in terms of development. As you are aware, the constituency has been in the opposition hands for ten years. In this regard, I strongly appeal to the New Deal Government to support the area Member of Parliament in ensuring that the following issues are addressed as quickly as possible. This is the only way to reward them for voting wisely in the just ended Tripartite Elections.

Mr Speaker, the specific areas of concern are:

Establishment of New District status at Mumbeji

Mr Speaker, I wish to submit that the Solwezi District Council has already approved the establishment of district status at Mumbeji located along the Solwezi/Mwinilunga Road. The establishment of the new district will be a welcome development strategy in view of the developing Lumwana Mining Company owned and operated by Quinox Minerals Limited of Australia.

Lumwana Mine

Sir, allow me to thank the New Deal Administration for partnering with investors to establish the Lumwana Mining Company Limited in the North-Western Province.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwanza: This Company will commence operations and develop its 100 per cent owned Lumwana Copper Project situated in my constituency, 95 kilometres south-west of Solwezi Boma. The mine will be a multi-pit, multi-staged operation moving approximately 130 metric tonnes of ore and waste per annum, and will produce copper concentrates containing an average of 150,000 metric tonnes of copper metal per year, for over a thirty-seven year mine life, making Lumwana the largest single copper mine in Africa and second in the world. The total developmental activities at Lumwana Mine will include:

(i) construction of 20 metric tonnes per annum process plant for concentrates production;

(ii) the New Deal Government has partnered with ZESCO in ensuring that a 72 kilometre extension of a 330KV transmission line to Lumwana from Kansanshi Mine is underway;

(iii) initially will employ 600 people, which will later increase to 1,500 when the mine will be fully operational in 2008;

(iv) developing of a full self-contained modern mine township for approximately 600 people as well as associated supporting infrastructure. Mr Speaker, for over forty years, this will be the first time that Zambia will have a new mine township; and

(v) the recruitment of general workers at the mine is being done by mine management with the involvement of the four Chiefs mentioned above. There are no labour brokers as the case was at Kansanshi. This will interest the Minister of Labour and Social Security.

Mr Speaker, in the light of this development, located in the midst of the savannah bush land, I am appealing to the New Deal Administration and the relevant ministries to come together and plan for the parallel non-mine townships like Chimwemwe/Riverside in Kitwe or Chilenje/Woodlands in Lusaka today, and this should be done in the Lumwana area for non-mining residents.

Maheba Refugee Resettlement

The New Deal Administration must be commended for hosting our displaced brothers and sisters from Angola and other neighbouring countries for over thirty-five years. As the refugees return to their motherlands, the Government is being requested to turn the refugee camp into the fourth Government University since this plan was started by the UNIP Government, which promised to transfer the School of Agriculture at the University of Zambia Campus in Lusaka to the University of Zambia Solwezi Campus.

Mr Mabenga: Aah!

Mr Mwanza: This plan was however, not implemented due to funding constraints. The Ministry of Education is, therefore, being requested to reconsider establishing the fourth public university in Solwezi to enhance the human resource capacity building to man various development strategies in the area, arising from the Copperbelt boom. The Maheba Refugee Resettlement has all infrastructures such as roads, schools, clinics, houses, offices and clean drinking water.

Road and Bridge Infrastructure

Mr Speaker, the road and bridge infrastructure in Solwezi West Constituency is dilapidated to say the least. However, it is gratifying to note that the New Deal Government has awarded contracts to rehabilitate the following roads:

(i) The Mutanda/Chavuma Road is a major project for the North-Western Province. With the discovery of oil and gas in the area, the Government must ensure that the road is tarred. Sir, you will recall that His Excellency the President told this Parliament on 27th October, 2006 that the Mutanda/Chavuma which is popularly known as the M8, would be tarred within His Excellency the President’s final five-year term of office. The people of North-Western Province will greatly appreciate the completion of this project which successive Zambian Governments have failed to do in forty-two years;

(ii) The Solwezi/Mwinilunga Road is planned for resurfacing this year and we commend Government for allocating K6 billion to this project in the 2007 Budget. However, it is my considered view that the allocation is just a drop in the ocean and will not see the completion of the road this year, as the road leads to the new Lumwana Mine. The Government must, therefore, reconsider the allocation and monitor progress on this road to enhance connectivity in the province;

(iii) Kisasa/Ifumba Road also passes through Chovwe, Wamafwa and Wandombe in Senior Chief Musele’s area has received little attention since independence and is in a very poor state. This road passes through the agricultural belt of Senior Chief Musele’s area. There are six damaged bridges on this road which need repair. The New Deal Government must, however, be commended for awarding a local contractor to construct a bridge on the Musabezhi River. However, the Government must follow-up the progress on this project as the local contractor is very slow in completing the works. This road passes through the remotest part of my constituency and its rehabilitation will obviously benefit the people of this area to the satisfaction of the electorates in the area; and

(iv) Matebo/Shilenda Road via Kalende/Mwafwe and Lukendo roads also require similar consideration.


Mr Speaker, Solwezi West Constituency has only three high schools at Mutanda, Maheba refugee Resettlement and Jiwundu. These are not adequate for the growing population following the opening up of Lumwana Mine. It is therefore proposed that, all primary schools including community schools in the constituency, be upgraded to Grade 9 and 12 respectively.


The health infrastructure in my constituency is in very poor state. Medicines are scares in most rural health centres …

Mr Mabenga: Faster!

Mr Mwanza: … with staff living in grass thatched houses. To this end, the New Deal Government is being requested to expand all the existing health centres along with the construction of decent staff houses. Muyashi Health Centre, which has been standing at window level for the last four years, requires to becompleted.

Energy and Water Development

Mr Speaker, the New Deal Government …

Mr Mabenga: Pick the important points time is running out!

Mr Mwanza: … must be commended for providing solar energy to chiefs’ palaces in the constituency. However, it is sad and sometimes annoying to see the ZESCO power lines race over and above these areas to feed provincial and Kasempa district centres. In order to empower the local people in my constituency with electricity, especially at Mutanda, Mwajimabwe and Kyasununu, the Government, through the Ministry of Energy and Water Development, is being requested to provide step down sub-stations to feed schools, clinics and chief’s palaces along the M8 up to Matebo Turn Off. It is proposed that such step down sub-stations be acquired through the Rural Electrification Programme.

Mr Mabenga: Hear, hear! Jump!

Mr Mwanza: Sir, following the development of Lumwana Mines and large influx of people to the area in search of employment opportunities, the security situation has become precarious, requiring the urgent attention of the Government. In this regard, the Ministry of Home Affairs is requested to establish a police post at Mukumbi Turn Off to protect property and people’s lives.

In addition, the Ministry is further requested to man the police post at the junction to Lumwana which has been constructed by the mining investors.

In this regard, allow me to commend His Excellency President Mwanawasa, SC and the New Deal Administration for creating an enabling environment in which the World Vision and the Government have partnered to bring development to Senior Chief Musele’s area via the Musele Area Development Programme. Under this programme, Mr Speaker, development has continued in the area, such as the construction of Wanyina Basic School and teacher’s houses, extension of the Kankonzhi Health Centre and construction of one additional ward and houses for clinical staff including the on-going rehabilitation of the Kisasa Basic School.

Mr Speaker, the success of this project in the constituency is largely due to the good economic policies of the New Deal Government. Long live His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Levy P Mwanawasa, SC and the entire National Executive Committee of our party, MMD and all peace loving citizens of our country.

In conclusion, I wish to state that the Solwezi West Constituency is now an MMD stronghold and, therefore, there are very high expectations from the electorate who turned up in large numbers on 28th September, 2006 to give His Excellency the President, the Member of Parliament and local Government councillors a landslide victory in the elections.

I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Chitika (Kawambwa): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the debate on this motion.

Mr Speaker, when a budget is presented, people have high expectations. They expect a lot of good things out of it and I want to tell our colleagues on the right that the governed are not interested in knowing where the resources are going to come from, all they are interested in is to see that their elected leaders are able to deliver.

Mr Speaker, their interest is to see that they have a good road in Kawambwa, Shangombo and Mbala.


Ms Chitika: Mr Speaker, they are also interested in seeing that in the budget there is a provision for quality education, health services and water. Retirees are also interested in seeing that their Government is able to take care of their needs. Mr Speaker, when people are young and active and they are in employment, they contribute to the pension funds. This is an investment and a saving for the future and so when these people are retired, they expect to be given their money in good time. In Zambia retirees have had a raw deal.

Mr Speaker, I am amazed by the smartness by the people on your right by planning to build a house for somebody who is still far away to retirement. If this is what they were doing in planning for our men and women who have retired so that they are given that money immediately they retire, I would be very happy and they would have my support.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Chitika: Mr Speaker, if retirees were given money in good time, they would be able to venture or engage themselves into businesses and would be able to employ some of the people in need of jobs. We have street children who are coming from homes of retirees. When we give arrears to retirees, we will not see these children on the streets. The Minister on page 20 of his speech announced to this House that he has made a provision of K266 billion for grant payment to the pension fund and for the dismantling of pension arrears.

Mr Speaker, this amount is not enough to take care of all the retirees who have been waiting and some of them have even died leaving orphans who need to be assisted. So, Sir, in the same spirit you are planning ahead for somebody, the Zambians will be very happy, if you planned ahead for the men and women who are languishing.

Mr Speaker, on the issue of the Fertiliser Support Programme, it is interesting to note that it has declined from K198 billion in 2006 to K150 billion this year. I want to refer you to the speech by the President in this House when he officially opened Parliament. In his statement he indicated that the Government will contribute 60 per cent of the cost of inputs. It is a decrease of almost K48 billion, and I am not sure if the promise by the President to this House will be fulfilled. These people are trying to embarrass His Excellency the President.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Chitika: He promised to help the vulnerable and here they are trying to reduce the figures. How are they going to help the vulnerable and the viable, according to the Minister, especially that this fertiliser ends up in wrong hands? The people that are supposed to benefit from this fertiliser support are not even beneficiaries because the commodity ends up in market places, so how are they going to fulfil the promise by the President to this House?

Mr Speaker, I now want to comment briefly on the energy sector. There is no mention in the speech by the Minister on the intention by Government to deal with the high cost of fuel. Mr Speaker, fuel is the major input in the cost of production. I will give you an example. In Kawambwa when they are transporting tea, it is done at great cost probably this is the reason the workers in Kawambwa are not paid on time. Sir, the fuel is very expensive for the tea company to transport the tea from Kawambwa to markets and this includes other cash crops. Kawambwa and Pambashe are growing a lot of maize and it is becoming very expensive for the Food Reserve Agency to transport that maize from Kawambwa to Chambishi where they are keeping it. Sir, Government needs to do something about the high cost of fuel.

Mr Speaker, on education, I want to say that this is a disaster. Most of the schools in the country are in a deplorable state. If you go to Kawambwa, schools lack essential materials including teachers. There is only one teacher who is the headmaster and the class teacher for all the grades.

Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!

Mrs Chitika: When you look at the results from Luapula and most parts of the rural constituencies in the country, they are very poor. This is because we are not taking care of what we are supposed to as a Government. The Zambian people missed an opportunity by failing to put the Patriotic Front in power.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Chitika: We could have shown them how to govern.

Hon. Opposition Member: Bwekeshapo.

Mrs Chitika: We are talking about employing 4,000 teachers. PF in Government would be able to employee these teachers immediately they graduate.


Mrs Chitika: So, I am appealing to the Zambian people to look at this seriously so that we are given an opportunity to come and show them what we can do.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Chitika: Mr Speaker, some Kawambwa Boys pupils perished almost two years ago and the people of Kawambwa expected a provision in the budget for the construction of tombstones as the graves are sinking. I am appealing to my colleagues on the right, that when the time comes we should be able to change figures from animals somewhere to Kawambwa so that they will be able to construct the tombstones. It was a disaster and the Government made a lot of promises which they have not fulfilled to-date, 2007.

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

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Minister in the President’s Office (Mr Taima): Thank you, Mr Speaker, for allowing me this opportunity to contribute to general debate on the budget speech by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning. The good provisions in the 2007 Budget cannot be over emphasised. This Government means. Hence, a resounding and reverberating applause to all well meaning and objective citizens of Zambia for the wonderful planning, monitoring and evaluation of Government programmes.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: It is only those who choose to be cynical about every move that the Government takes, who do not see how well meaning and good this budget is.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: There are so many wonderful provisions in the budget that even an attempt to summarise them would be futile because almost every sector has been well taken care of and one can check through. You will find that for all of the sectors there is good provision in the 2007 budget.

Mr Speaker, what is more encouraging is contrary to accessions by some hon. Members of this House that this budget might just be one of the many others that have been prepared, well tabulated and read out to the House and this I presume was happening more than five years ago. The New Deal Administration is seriously concerned with the implementation or quality execution of this year’s budget.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: To enhance the implementation of the budget, the Government has not only promised to strengthen treasury management and expenditure monitoring systems, but has also decided to broaden stakeholder involvement in the monitoring and evaluation of Government programmes.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!
Mr Taima: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning in his contribution, implored all stakeholders, and I want to repeat, all stakeholders, including the hon. Members of this august House to take up the responsibility of developing these issues by supervising Government programmes which use public funds. There could not be any other better prudence, better honesty, better transparency, talk about faithfulness itself, anything good to mention than this that has been exhibited by the MMD New Deal Administration in dealing with national resources.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: Mr Speaker, let me now briefly take a little time on State House because I have observed that it has become quite common that every hon. Member who stands to debate on your left hand, Mr Speaker, does not complete their debates without making any reference to State House.


Mr Taima: Mr Speaker, State House, even as the name clearly states is not the same as Mwanawasa House. This is a national institution and one of so much importance to the nation that it is not only historic, but it is actually an apex of governance because this is where the leader of the Government and the nation is housed.

Hon. Government Member: Yes.

Mr Taima: This institution must, therefore, be given a status and reverence it deserves, irregardless of who occupies it and when. The Government is aware of schemes by some of our allies in the House to ensure that they oppose as much as possible the estimates of expenditure as we begin to debate the budget in detail head by head, especially, provisions for State House, the Office of the President and even the provision of this amount that has been set apart for commencement of the construction of the President’s house. We are fully aware that they have been meeting day and night scheming.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: Now, if his planned debates are not so much because State House does not merit these provisions, but only because of the so much work they have of the incumbent President, then, that is a very sad development.


Mr Taima: The incumbent President in so many respects does not compare with any of his predecessors.


Mr Taima: This is a man who has been prudent in the management of national resources.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: The incumbent President has made every effort to carry his predecessors along in his leadership of the nation. He has ensured that he accords them the respect and the status that they deserve.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: He has gone further to fight for their entitlements.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: The construction of Dr Kaunda’s house, for example, is one which we can proudly talk about because we are the initiators as the New Deal Administration. Despite the fact that former President Kaunda retired sixteen years ago the construction of his house only started when the New Deal Administration took office.

Hon. Government Members: hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: What are you scared of?

Mr Taima: In fact, the President has taken so much interest in ensuring that Dr Kaunda’s house is completed as can be evidenced by some of the letters that I will be reading through, and if the House so wishes, I can even table them.


Mr Taima: Surely, we do not want to build houses for former Presidents in arrears, sixteen years after retirement of the President as the case is over Dr Kaunda’s house. There is, therefore, nothing wrong with Government beginning to prepare for the retirement of the incumbent President now.


Mr Taima: I would like to echo here, the statement made earlier by the hon. Minister of Works and Supply, Mr Simbao, that the Government does not only have the will, but is also determined and has the capacity to construct or initiate and get started with the construction of houses for not only the incumbent President, but if possible with determination and commitment in the next three years, all the senior houses in issue would be constructed.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: It would actually not be feasible for anyone to think that we have to wait until after the incumbent has retired and then make a provision for the construction of the entire house and many other houses in a matter of one year. This is because planning is the best approach. It is better to be proactive than reactive.


Mr Taima: Mr Speaker, President Mwanawasa has successfully led this nation in stabilising the national economy and should, therefore, lead the nation in achieving improved service delivery in line with the theme of this year’s Budget.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: This improvement in service delivery should, therefore, start with State House where the Head of the Government is. It will not do, therefore, for some hon. Members to choose to shoot down any provision in the Budget as long as it is State House related.

Mr Speaker, The ever growing talk about animals at State House cannot be left without comment. This House may wish to appreciate the background to this provision in the Budget. Sometime around November, last year, we experienced an outbreak of a disease called Tick Bone, which saw about six animals at State House die.

Hon. Members: T bone or tick bone!

Mr Taima: Tick bone or whatever it is called. These are technical terms.


Hon. Government Members: Hammer!

Mr Taima: We had to invite officers from the Zambia Wildlife Association (ZAWA) to come and do an investigation.


Mr Taima: These officers undertook their investigations and made recommendations. In fact, I have details of what these recommendations were. It is actually, with this background that State House management simply to add figures to these recommendations, thereby creating a budgeting line to ensure that the animals were well taken care of.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: If anything, one of their recommendations was that these animals overstayed in a limited space called State House. They recommended that these animals be taken back into the bush in exchange with another batch of animals. These still required veterinary attention and many other provisions including food supplements.


Mr Taima: I actually have the detailed breakdown of the K78.5 million in line with the recommendations that were made by the officers who came from Zambia Wildlife Association.

Hon. Opposition Members: Read them out!

Mr Taima: Some hon. Members of the House are asking me to read. I have the details and I can read if I am allowed, but in the interest of time, I will just summarise.


Mr Taima: Sir, K40.4 million out of the K78.5 million relates to the food supplement requirements. Veterinary requirements alone will take up K23.5 million. There are other requirements, but those details will be provided for the hon. Members when we get to the detailed discussion of Head 01/01. We have every detail that the hon. Members may want to have in this House when it comes to debating our budget estimates.

Mr Speaker, the other requirements like the procurement of the fish tank, water troughs and applicators will take up about K14.6 million. When you do simple mathematics by adding K40.4 million, K23.5 million and K14.6, the figures add up to K78.5 million, which is the provision we have made in this year’s Budget for State House.

Mr Speaker, I should also quickly mention here that these animals have been in existence from even before President Mwanawasa went to State House. In one way or another, there has been a provision to take care of these animals, except it has not been as sufficient as we would have wanted it to be, hence the reason for us to create a separate Budget line this time around. This should not raise unnecessary debate in this august House by hon. Members.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Taima: Sir, in his quest to help stabilise the economy, the President has foregone many luxuries that should ordinarily go with the Office of the President.


Mr Taima: If you compare with his predecessors, there are so many luxuries that the President has decided to forego in the interest of helping stabilise the economy of Zambia. I wish to mention some of them quickly, given that I do not have much time. This House may want to appreciate that the current furniture, for example, at State House, was left by former President Frederick Titus Chiluba. The incumbent President has chosen not to replace it because he wanted to be exemplary in his leadership in ensuring that he contributed to the stability of the economy.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: The current linen we have at State House is the same which was left by the former President. The House may want to learn even further that contrary to the provisions in his entitlement, the President had to buy his own blankets from inception. When you see a budget line created about linen, I know that it will trigger debate, but the President has been buying his own blankets and linen all in the interest of contributing to the stability of the economy.

The state of the two offices that the President uses is, if not below, then just equal to some of the offices I have visited for hon. Ministers and some offices for hon. Deputy Ministers are in a slightly better condition. We can run through, and talk about his residence which got so dilapidated that he had to raise concern. A couple of months ago, the Ministry of Works and Supply moved in and began to undertake renovations which are ongoing even now. This is the back ground.

We can talk about trips both local and foreign. The President has taken so much interest in the composition of the delegation lists that he wants to be sure of the relevance of every officer included on the delegation list, to the programme on hand. Sometimes some people are returned at airports upon realisation that they were not relevant to the programme on hand. This he has done, taking into account the fact that every such trip takes tax payers money. This is a President who has been prudent as I mentioned earlier in managing the resources of the nation.

Now that we feel we should move on to begin to lead this nation in the provision of improved and quality services, we should not shoot down every provision as suggested in the Budget.

Mr Speaker, concerns have been raised by people over the appearance of State House saying that it does not portray the value of State House or the house housing the Head of Sate and the first family. We as State House staff did not have to wait for these concerns to be raised before beginning to redress the situation, but we chose to forego the beauty of the House and other obvious necessities in line with the President’s policy direction which was to achieve a stable economy. Now is the time to improve on service delivery, even in line with the theme of this year’s Budget. State House shall be no exception in this planned improvement as we believe in leading by example.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Taima: We want to achieve a good surrounding, better infrastructure, hospitality to both local and foreign visitors, working environment for State House staff, better and well maintained vehicles, better looking and well fed animals and so on.

I wish to state again that it will not do any good for hon. Members to deliberately shoot down anything related to State House 2007 budget. My appeal to this august House, therefore, is that we should remain united and support the Estimates of Expenditure for State House for this year’s budget. There is an English adage which says, ‘to talk is good, but action is better’. I rest my case.

I thank you, Sir.

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

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Kazonga): Thank you, Mr Speaker, for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the debate on the Budget presented to this House by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning.

Mr Speaker, it is a great challenge to come up with a national budget that takes into account all the major areas of human endeavour. In spite of the limitations of anticipated financial resources, the budget has taken into consideration specific ways of improving our social delivery system. My debate will concentrate on just two sectors, of course, by default. I will start with Local Government and look at some of the aspects.

There is a growing consensus that democratic governance creates the conditions for sustainable developments and poverty reduction. Local Government can play a major role in this effort by ensuring more effective and accountable local infrastructure and service delivery for the people and by improving the dialogue between the Government, citizens, and the communities and the private sector. As part of the principles of Local Government, the private sector plays a very important role, hence the inclusion of the private sector. I will link Local Government to the achievements of some of the Millennium Development Goals.

The Millennium Development Goals, Mr Speaker, point to the extreme urgent objective of improving the overall quality of life for as many people as possible. Therefore, one must determine in what way the promotion of local governance and decentralisation can lead to a better quality of life.

First of all, local governance and decentralisation which Government is implementing can contribute more effectively to the Millennium Development Goals by ensuring that funds reach the most impoverished areas of our country. When the power is centralised, Government jobs and any accompanying economic activities become highly centralised as well. The setting up of local authorities throughout the country spreads not only power, but jobs, investment opportunities and infrastructure. All of these would help reduce the proportion of the Zambian population living in poverty, which is the specific aim of the first Millennium Development Goal. Additionally, anything that increases governmental transparency contributes positively to the Millennium Development Goals. Secondly, local governance and decentralisation can lead to more effective mechanisms for reaching the public health targets of the Millennium Development Goals. The Millennium Development Goals call for reducing infant and maternal mortality rates by ensuring that more children are immunised against measles. All this can be done through local government. It would be daunting if all these things were centralised by Government.

As these arguments have indicated, decentralisation and local governance can empower individuals and communities to an extent not possible under highly centralised Government. After all, physical, financial and political empowerments are all necessary if you want to put an end to poverty and achieve the Millennium Development Goals. Hence my plea to the hon. Members in the House to support Local Government related issues.

Dr. Scott: And you support your council.

Mr Kazonga: Local Government brings decision making close to the people. It can both produce decisions better attuned to local circumstances and help build people’s sense of ownership and pride in the area and communities in which they live. It is because local authorities are charged not just with delivery of a defined set of services, but with shaping the overall future of their areas linked today to the Fifth National Development Plan. This boils down to helping people making a better life for themselves, their families and the communities in which they live, making communities safe and pleasant places to live and work in and where good quality public services are readily available.

I take note that this year’s budget has taken into consideration some of the specific ways in which the Local Government delivery system can be improved. If I look at one area in the water supply and sanitation, the National Water Policy of 1994 provides overall policy framework for the water sector. The policy includes seven key policy principles that also give guidance to the institutional framework for the sector. One of these principles mandates responsibility for provision of water supply and sanitation to local authorities and private enterprises. As a result, Government designed the National Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Programme to run from 2006 to 2015. I hope this will address the issues that the hon. Member for Mwense raised and I believe it was on behalf of other hon. Members in the province. The overall goal of the National Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Programme is to provide sustainable access to water supply and sanitation in rural areas so as to contribute towards poverty alleviation of Zambia’s rural population as well as facilitate the achievement of the water and sanitation Millennium Development Goal.

As articulated by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning and specifically on pages 18 and 19 of the Budget Speech, Government has made a step in the right direction to improve the service delivery in our local authorities through, using my own language, re-modelling of the grant system. This gives hope to our local authorities, as the grant system has been re-modelled to look at the aspects of capital grants, recurrent grants and also retrenchment grants.

I believe that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning has the right formula to address some of the critical issues affecting our local authorities.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, having touched a few areas in local government, I will now move on to agriculture.

Mr Speaker, most rural people depend on agriculture for their livelihood. The Fertiliser Support Programme for small-scale farmers will definitely improve food security for the people in line with the Warm Declaration and World Food Summit Plan of Action.

The Budget has made a provision to continue supporting small-scale farmers through Fertiliser Support Programme. Government needs to be commended for this one.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kazonga: Agriculture has a wide-ranging impact on other sectors of the economy. For example, the production of raw materials for the manufacturing industry basically is dependent on agriculture as a result of good Government policies, innovative Government strategies and output in the agriculture sector is growing and therefore increasing the sector’s contribution to the Gross Domestic Product. One specific strategy that needs to be mentioned is the 60 per cent input subsidy under the Fertiliser Support Programme for maize production by small, but viable farmers, which is enhancing their access to fertiliser and seed.

Mr Speaker, I will skip the portion of science and technology and also technical education and vocational training since our hon. Minister of Science, Technology and Vocational Training has adequately covered those aspects.

Therefore, in my conclusion, I want all of us to move together as we move from stability to improved service delivery. There is need for us politicians to work together for the benefit of the people of Zambia so that we improve our service delivery. Once this is achieved, all of us will smile.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Minister of Mines and Minerals Development (Dr Mwansa): Mr Speaker, I thank you for allowing me to contribute to the debate on the Motion of Supply moved by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning.

I am indebted to all hon. Members who have debated before me especially in relation to the mining industry. I intend to confine my debate to the following issues in response to the concerns raised by the hon. Members in their debate.

1. Privatisation of the mines;
2. Sharing windfall gains;
3. Mining sector revolving fund; and
4. Mineral or Mineral exploration and investment opportunities in Luapula and Northern Provinces.

Privatisation of the Mines

Mr Speaker, some of our nationals feel that the privatisation of the mines that belonged to Zambia Consolidate Copper Mine ZCCM Limited has not benefited the Zambian people. To that extent, the hon. Member for Roan Constituency has proposed that we must consider nationalising the mines. I would like to appeal to all Members of the House and to the Zambians at large to understand clearly, the factors behind privatisation and appreciate what compelled the Government to take the route of privatisation. The main contributing factors that led to this are as follows:

1. Copper production, our main export activity, dropped from the high peak of 750,000 metric tonnes in 1973 to an all time low of 257,000 metric tonnes at the end of 2000.

2. Revenue from metal exports dropped, the entire economy weakened, and the standard of living in Zambia generally deteriorated. Since the entire national economy heavily depended on revenues from metal exports, the low exports earning resulted in a drastic decline in people’s living standards. The lack of foreign exchange produced wide spread shortages of essential commodities. Our education and health infrastructure had started experiencing school requisites and basic drugs in hospitals and health centres;

3. Mineral exploration programmes that are critical for the development of the mining sector were suspended;

4. Plants and equipment at all the mines deteriorated and were in dare need of rehabilitation;

5. The Government was spending about US $1 per day to keep the mines running. This was a very heavy expenditure for the treasury and could not be sustained;

6. With the poor performance of the mining industry, massive job losses in the mining industry were eminent. Under this circumstances, the Government had three options:

a. commercialisation of the mines;
b. liquidation; and
c. privatisation

Commercialisation meant that the Government would have to retain the 60.3 per cent majority shareholding in a ZCCM Limited and then let the property motive drive the business, as is the case in a purely commercial enterprise. As a major shareholder, the Government would have had the responsibility to recapitalise ZCCM and make it profitable. Unfortunately, the Government was not in a position to raise the amount of money required. Massive investment was needed to improve the performance of ZCCM Limited.

Liquidation meant closing down ZCCM Limited and selling off the assets. This option would have resulted in closure of many other businesses that depended on supplying the mines with various items. It would have generated a lot of suffering for the thousands of mine workers in the country who would have lost their jobs. Given that the mines were a major foreign exchange earner, liquidation would have also had a significant and adverse micro-economic impact.

Privatisation meant transferring ownership of the mines to private companies by selling Government shares in the mines. This option was preferred because it was one sure way of raising investment for the mines to continue operating and avoid massive job losses and suffering of the people that would have ensured following the collapse of the mines.

Mr Speaker, all considered, privatisation has benefited Zambia as I shall soon demonstrate. Among the benefits of privatisation are the following:

(i) copper production has risen from 257,000 metric tonnes in 2000 to an estimated 492,000 metric tonnes in 2006, a greater achievement for Zambia indeed;

(ii) the new mine owners have so far invested more than US $2 billion in rehabilitation of plants and equipment and acquisition of facilities since 2000. Rehabilitation of plant and equipment include the following:

a. refurbishment of the smelter at Nkana;
b. rehabilitation of the leach plant at Nchanga;
c. the smelter upgrade at Mufulira;
d. rehabilitation of Konkola Tank House, and
e. rehabilitation of the cobalt plant at Chambishi.

Investment in new plant and equipment has included the following:

(a) the smelter and leach plant at Chambishi to process all the smelter slug found at Nkana into cobalt and copper;

(b) the new opencast mining facility at Solwezi completed the concentrator, a solvent extraction plant and a copper tank house;

(c) the new solvent extraction, copper pollution facility at Bwana Mkubwa, Ndola and a new acid plant at the same place.

(c) Chibuluma South Mine Concentrator

(d) Oxygen Plant and In-Situ Leaching at Mufulira

Mr Speaker, resumption of exploration works is another significant outcome of privatisation. The renewed interest works in exploration work has planed and paved a way for the expansion of the mining industry in Zambia. We can cite the following examples:

(a) development of a nickel mine has commenced in Munali Hills south of Lusaka because of increased exploration after privatisation;

(b) the renewed exploration works have led to the development of a new mine in the north of North Western Province, the large-scale copper mine at Lumwana

(c) exploration activities have enabled Teal Zambia Limited, who recently acquired a large-scale mining licence, to open a new mine at Mwambashi near Chingola on the Copperbelt; and

(d) other mineral deposits of site that can be put to commercial use include the new copper discovery by Zambezi Resources in Chongwe and Mkushi Copper Deposits discovered by Africa Eagle Resources.

The amount of investment and the rise in production explained earlier have not only benefited the country in terms of increased foreign exchange earnings from various sectors of the economy and the consequence general rise in the quality of life in Zambia, but have also saved much feared job loses in the mines.

Privatisation of the mines has even produced new jobs in the industry. Direct employment in the mining industry stands now at 50,000 employees as compared with 32,000 employees in 1998, two years before completing the programme of privatisation. If we add indirect employment generated in companies that provide various services and goods to the mining industry, the figure is far in excess of the 50,000 direct employees.

Mr Speaker, I wish to inform this House that part of the national vision for Zambia is to become a centre of excellence in mining and related industries. We want to see more smelters and refineries established as well as downstream processing of gemstones, industrial minerals, copper, cobalt and other base metals. This requires the active participation of the private sector.

We shall succeed in this effort because the world is becoming more and more aware that Zambia represents a highly attractive and risk-free mining investment destination. Hon. Members of this House who have seen the results of the World Risk Survey 2005 conducted in Australia can confirm this development.

The 2005 results of the Investment Risk Survey of some twenty-five top mining countries in the world saw Zambia move from the eighteenth position in 2004 to the fourth position in 2005 on the table of low-risk mining investment destinations. In that position, Zambia was only surpassed by Botswana, Canada and the United States of America. This means that we have a good chance to attract more investment and realise our dream of making Zambia the centre of excellence in mining and related industries.

Mr Speaker, in my contribution to the debate on the motion of thanks to His Excellency’s Address to the House in January, 2006, I made reference to the investment risk survey in relation to the Zambia, but as a matter of emphasis I felt that it was important to reiterate the point about the improvement in the investment climate in our country.

Sir, the mining industry has been a supplier of raw materials and importer of manufactured items from developed countries for too long. We have the opportunity to reverse the trend and become the net exporter of manufactured goods based on our God-given mineral resources. Calling for nationalisation of the mining industry would wipe away this great opportunity.

In view of the foregoing, we should not be talking about nationalisation; rather as a country, we should begin to find ways of maximising benefits from the private investment in the mining sector.

Mr Speaker, let me address the second item which is the sharing of windfall gains. The hon. Member for Pemba (Mr Matongo) wanted to know in his debate whether Zambia is benefiting from the windfall gains from the mining industry arising from the unexpected high metal prices obtaining on the world market. I promised to deal with this matter. I will address it in the context of Price Participation Agreements.

Price Participation Agreements are instruments designed to tap into the windfall gains. They were initially entered into at the time of privatising the mines because of the uncertainty about the future metal price levels on the world market. As a way of benefiting from the unexpected high copper and cobalt prices, Government entered into Price Participation Agreements with the new mine owners.

The method of computing payments that are due differs from one Price Participation Agreement to the other. In the case of Konkola Copper Mine (KCM) PLC, 25 per cent of revenue from copper or cobalt sales at prices above the trigger price is paid to ZCCM Investment Holdings as price participation payment. The trigger price for the copper is US$1.03 per Pound while that for cobalt is US7.50 per Pound.

The number of companies with Price Participation Agreements has increased over the years. In addition to the KCM, the following companies have price participation agreements with the Government: Mopani, Chambeshi Metals, Lumwana, the New Mulyashi Mine that is coming up at Luanshya and Chibuluma Mine.

So far, ZCCM Investment Holdings has received part of this windfall gains arising from high copper prices. From March 2000 to January 2007, the total revenue received from Price Participation Agreements at times of high metal prices is in the order K28.6 billion.

These resources have been used by ZCCM Investment Holdings to meet predetermined obligations on behalf of Government. These obligations include transfers to the Privatisation Trust Fund to pay the terminal benefits of mine workers who either resign or are retrenched. These are workers who were employed at the time of privatisation in 2000 and the obligation will remain until the last worker who was employed in 2000 resigns or is retrenched. Other obligations include costs related to the finalisation of the sale of houses to miners and transfers to the Mukuba Pension Scheme.

 I should mention that in addition to price participation payments Government has the following shareholdings through ZCCM Investment Holding in the privatised mines from which we get a dividend whenever it is available:

- Kansanshi Mine PLC 20%
- Konkola Copper Mines PLC 20.6%
- Copperbelt Energy Corporation PLC 20%
- Luanshya Copper Mines PLC 15%
- Chambishi NFCA Mining PLC 15%
- Chibuluma Mines PLC 15%
- Chambishi Metals PLC 10%
- Mopani Copper Mines PLC 10%

Mr Speaker, let me now turn to the Mining Sector Revolving Fund. In contribution to the debate on the motion of thanks to His Excellency’s Address to the House in 2006, I informed the House about the establishment of the Mining Sector Revolving Fund. Since the hon. Member of Parliament for Roan Constituency (Mr Kambwili) has informed the House that he is not aware of the existence of the fund, I wish to take this opportunity to brief the House and the general public again on this fund.

Through consultation with stakeholders who included small-scale miners associations, the fund was established in 2005 to address one of the major challenges in the development of small-scale mining and gemstone sector, namely; the difficulty for Zambians to access investment fund from local financial institutions on the commercial terms. The revolving fund housed in my ministry was established with an initial capital of K2 billion in order to provide credit facility to small-scale miners.

As an ongoing programme, the fund is advertised from time to time in the print media. For the future, we will consider advertising through community radios as well in order for this facility to be accessed by all eligible small-scale miners.

Applications for the loans are evaluated in my ministry on the basis of the following criteria:

a. validity of mining right;

b. mine must be in operation for at least 3 years;

c. submission of a geological survey department approved geological report;

d. applicant must be a registered company or operative or individual who holds a mining right;

e. submission of audited accounts;

f. an applicant must be a Zambian;
g. submission of a resolution to apply for a loan ( in case of a company or cooperative); and

h. signature of the holder of the licence, partner or authorised officer, like a company chairman or company secretary.

Since the inception, the fund has been disbursed twice involving a total amount of K1.43 billion. It has been disbursed to 30 successful applicants from the small mining sub-sector. This was done following advertisements inviting applications in September 2005 and August 2006 in the Times of Zambia and Zambia Daily Mail newspapers. Physical verifications of the status of mining rights held by applicants were conducted by officials in the ministry to pave way for the disbursements.

The first disbursement of K765 million was released to sixteen successful applicants (out of eighteen applicant received) in March, 2006, six of whom were women and miners representing 37.5 per cent participation rate by women.

Sir, the second round of disbursement of K665 million went to fourteen successful applicants (out of fifty applications received) in August, 2006 among them were six women mine owners, representing 35.7 per cent participation rate. This is in conformity with our policy to reserve 30 per cent of the fund for women miners.

Mr Speaker, I want to say that the Mining Sector Revolving Fund in my ministry has been established and is functioning very well. 

Mineral Exploration and Investment Opportunities in Luapula and Northern Provinces     

Sir, the Hon. Member of Parliament for Chilubi wanted to know whether Government had plans for mineral exploration in Luapula and Northern Provinces. We appreciate the fact that geological potential in these two provinces remains largely unknown. I wish to inform the House that the Government, through the Geological Survey Department, is currently mapping the Mwense area in Luapula. On completion of the Mwense area sometime this year, the department will commence mapping of the Isaki Areas in Samfya District. Thereafter, the plan is to move to Northern Province to continue with the geological mapping.

Mr Speaker, I should add that on 26th January this year, we informed the House about this programme in our answer to Oral Question Number 97 asked by the hon. Member of Parliament for Katombola.

Sir, with regard to the issue raised by the hon. Member of Parliament for Mwense as to whether there were any plans for Government to facilitate investment in mining in Mwense District, I wish to confirm that plans are under way to get investors in large scale mining into the Mwense District of Luapula Province. Last month, a group of foreign investors wishing to partner with Zambians flew into Mwense District for an on the sport assessment of the mineral potential of the areas and transport routs. On return, they gave us a very encouraging report.

Sir, we will do all we can for these potential investors to ensure that a large scale mining facility is established in Mwense District. I should mention that Government would facilitate opening up of a large scale mining operation in each and every province of Zambia in order to generate more wealth and employment for our people. We believe that this is achievable given that every province in our country has some minerals resource of one kind or another.


Mr Speaker, in conclusion, I would like to emphasize the following points:

1. As a country, we should not be calling for nationalisation, but rather how we can extract maximum benefit from the private investment that has gone into the mining industry because;

(i) The new mine owners have invested more than US$2 billion in plant rehabilitation and acquisition of new facilities since the year 2000 and we do not have this sort of money to pay back.

(ii) The amount of private investment that has gone into the mining industry has benefited the country in terms of job creation, rise in mineral production, increased foreign exchange earnings and the consequent improvement in the quality of life in Zambia. These benefits would be reversed if the mines were to be nationalised again.

2. Zambia is benefiting, through price participation agreements from the windfall gains in the mining industry arising from the high metal prices currently obtaining in the world market. The price participation revenues have so far been used to meet important obligations. These obligations include transfers to the privatisation trust fund to pay terminal benefits to miners employed at the time of privatisation in 2000, who either resign or get retrenched. Other obligations include costs related to finalising the sale of houses to miners.

3. The Mining Sector Revolving Fund is functioning well and in conformity with our policy to reserve 30 per cent of the disbursement for women in mining. Its growth should be supported by all concerned.

4. The policy of Government is to ensure that within the next four to five years, a large scale mining operation is establishing in each of our provinces. We have the mineral potential national wide to achieve this and create more wealth and generate more employment for our people.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

The Minister of Energy and Water Development (Mr Mutati): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to make my brief contribution to the motion by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning.

Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning placed before this nation the mountains that we have climbed and the frontiers before us. He put before us the proposals that bind us and this nation with the progressive realisation that the social and economic well being of Zambia is at the centre of any Budget.

Mr Speaker, it is very clear in our understanding that the responsibility for any Government is to deliver social services to its people. It is very clear that along side the liberal social services, the Government has a role to provide development to the nation, together with its citizens.

Mr Speaker, as long as we are human beings, we are going to have challenges. In 2006, the Budget that we had of almost K9 trillion, the revenue collection was under by 8.4 per cent. As a consequence of this, some of the projects that we were meant to do in 2006 could not be realised. These are the challenges.

Sir, every human life has equal life. The role of Government therefore remains that all its citizens must share in the resources that are generated within this country. That is a challenge that the Ministry of Finance and National Planning does have. Therefore, it leads me to the theme of this year’s Budget, “From Stability to Improved Service Delivery”. It is a very key theme. What this means is that the Ministry of Finance and National Planning had the difficult job to balance tax relief on one hand and also to provide this source for development of this nation. In doing so, on the tax relief side, the Minister of Finance and National Planning made some reductions to pay as you earn and other taxes whilst at the same time, some indirected taxes where adjusted upwards. The main effect of all these reliefs was that the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning provided relief to this nation in excess of K120 billion.

Mr Speaker, on the development side, the revenue that has been allocated to development has also increase whilst at the same time, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning is providing and entrenching stability. That is what it means by improved service delivery. For the person on the ground, improved service delivery will simply mean that whilst you provide tax relief, you must provide for more jobs. That is what improved service delivery is. My contribution to the Budget will be to demonstrate from energy and water, how we are going to contribute to improved service delivery and the creation of employment and therefore, increasing the GDP available to the people of Zambia and confirming once more that GDP resides in the pockets of the people of Zambia.

Hon. Members: Quality!

Mr Mutati: Mr Speaker, in energy and water, we have two components. The first one is the water side. Improving service delivery means that in the water sector, we have to create employment. This Budget has provided us with an opportunity to create employment.

Sir, in this year’s Budget, we are going to construct four dams, in Lufwanyama, Luwingu, Kapiri Mposhi and Mwinilunga. We are going to create as a consequence 200 jobs. That also does not take into account the opportunities that will be created by having these dams in these areas. We are also in 2007, going to rehabilitate twenty-four dams and this will create a thousand jobs. This is what is called improved service delivery.

Mr Speaker, we are also going to develop springs in Katete, Mbala, Chinsali and Mbeleshi. We are going to create at least 100 jobs. That is what is called improved service delivery, creating employment opportunity for the people of Zambia.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mutati: Mr Speaker, we are also going to create harvest for water in Kipushi and Kalomo. This will create at least 220 jobs. Therefore, what we are saying in improving service delivery is that at the ministry, we have to create opportunity for employment for our people so that they can be able to access GDP.

Mr Speaker, our role is to create infrastructure on which particularly agriculture can rest on by creating and rehabilitating the dams. We are creating opportunities for agriculture to create even more jobs. That is a thrath of this that we are going to improve service delivery by creating infrastructure that will support further creation of jobs. This is among the things that we are going to do in the water sector and in this year’s budget, we have got almost K8.2 billion allocated to creating infrastructure in energy, which will result in the creation of employment going forward.

Mr Speaker, how are we going to create the jobs in the energy component? First of all, in 2006, the hon. Members of Parliament will be aware that we placed in additional investment in Indeni in order to ensure that it operated on a sustainable basis. In 2007, we have provided in this Budget, K42 billion for further recapitalisation of Indeni. The purpose is for us to have continuous supply of fuels so that the economy can continue to turn. By turning the economy, what you are doing is that you are improving service delivery. We have also provided increased resource for rural electrification. Last year, we had K11 billion and this year, we are going to have K23 billion. We are going to do over fifty projects in different parts of Zambia. In doing these projects, we are going to create opportunity for employment.

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1815 hours until 1830 hours.

Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, I was speaking on the theme of improved service delivery and I was indicating to the House that in the 2007 Budget under the Rural Electrification Program, we have migrated from K11 billion last year to K23 billion this year which is over 100 per cent increase and that we are going to do over fifty projects in all the provinces of Zambia.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, this amount does not include the U S $10 million that we have secured from UNIDO to do three pilot projects on isolated power generation.

Madam Speaker, with the US$10 million, we are doing three pilot projects - one in Kaputa, one in Samfya and the other one in Shiwang’andu. In Shiwang’andu, we are going to put in a mini-hydro and construction will start in June this year that will create potentially employment of at least 100.

Madam, in Kaputa, we are going to do bio-mass power generation which is starting in July this year. In Samfya, we are going to put in a mini-solar grid for power generation. We want to see if generating power is much more cost effective if you go the isolated way particularly for those rural areas that are far away from the national grid. By doing all these things and delivering power particularly to the rural areas, we will be creating employment and a better life. For us, this means improved service delivery.

Mr Muntanga: What are you doing in Kalomo?

Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, we are doing many things in Kalomo.

Mr Muntanga: Aah!

Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, one of the areas that we are going to focus on this year is the bio-fuel sub-sector.

Madam Speaker, as you aware, we import 100 per cent of our fuel requirements. The fuel prices on the international market have not speared us. Therefore, we have carried an initiative this year to begin to produce some amount of bio-fuels using energy plugs and one of which is Jatropha. We have been going around seeing how Jatropha can be used to produce particularly bio-diesel.

Madam Speaker, you will be glad to know that at a farm in Serenje, a farmer is able to produce bio-diesel on the farm for his tractors, irrigation and generate power all on one side and he has never visited a filling station for the last one year. Therefore, we believe that there is an opportunity in this particular sector.

Madam Speaker, in Central Province alone, we have over 17,000 out-growers in the bio-fuels sub-sectors growing Jatropha. We believe that by the end of this year, we will be able to create over 50,000 out-growers in Jatropha. For us, this means improved service delivery and creating employment opportunities in the rural areas so that we change the shift of people instead of coming to town they stay in the rural areas. For us therefore, this is improved service delivery. We believe that there is a lot of future in the bio-fuel sub-sector for employment creation, security of supply and conserving foreign exchange that we so dearly need n this country.

Madam Speaker, at the moment our import bill for fuels is over US $500 million. We believe that we can mitigate this amount through production at some level of bio-diesel and improve on production of ethanol. If we do this we will be able to reduce our import bill.

Madam Speaker, on the power side, we have already issued a Ministerial Statement that we are carrying out the rehabilitation of some plants in ZESCO at Kafue, Kariba North Bank and Victoria Falls. Having spent US$300 million on these projects, the totality is that we are going to increase capacity by 210 mega watts. Zambia will be able to have capacity after we complete a PRP of at least 2,000 mega watts. Given the fact that at the moment we are consuming 1,400 mega watts, it periodically means, that we are going to have 600 an surplus so that it gives us time to develop other sites. We are putting plans to develop other sites and this is the Kafue lower the Ithezi-Ithezi and Kariba North Bank extension.

Madam the total investment profound for these developments is in the order of US $2.1 billion. It will be a net sector to receive such colossal investment next to the mines. As we believe by putting in this kind of investment, not only are we going to deal with the looming power shortage, not only are we going to create capacity to supply power to the economy so that all the sectors are able to produce, we are also going to create employment.

Madame Speaker, during construction we will estimate that we are going to create over 10,000 jobs and after construction, we shall have at least 2,000 jobs.

Therefore, for us at energy and water, we believe that this is improved service delivery because we are putting money in the pockets of the people of Zambia to live a better life and that way it is improved service delivery.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, GDP is not a number. It is a feel that you feel in the pocket that changes the way a persons walks, that is called GDP. The way hon. Muntanga is laughing is because of GDP. Having taken some tea, it is a consequence of GDP.

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, that is what grows the economy. The size of Hon. Muntanga is a symbol of good GDP.

Mr Muntanga stood up


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, as the Ministry of Energy and Water Development, we are not going to reduce GDP associated to Hon. Muntanga.


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, it is critically important for the Government to improve on service delivery because that is a primary role of Government.

Madam Speaker, an issue was raised on fuel prices.

 Many times, we have said that we are exposed to the international fuel prices because these are outside the control of this Government. As African countries, we have tried to come together to find ways and means to try and mitigate the high fuel prices. Because of short of subsidy, there is nothing else that you can do. Hence the reason we are investigating other routes to try and create our own capacity internally through bio-fuels and through the exploration that we are doing in North Western Province.

We believe that in the medium to long-term, the output of North Western Province are going to have an impact on the price of fuel in this country beyond facilitating the growth of the economy and beyond creating jobs not only in North Western Province, but Zambia in general.

Madam Speaker, we believe that this Government is going about it the correct way in terms of delivering services to the people of Zambia.

Whilst we have GDP estimated at about 6 per cent, the challenge for the Minister of Finance and National Planning and the rest of us in Government will be that the GDP going at 6 per cent must be broad based. We must be able to distribute the benefits of growth to the majority people of Zambia through the various interventions, such as the Fertiliser Support Scheme, creation of employment of more teachers and nurse, the construction of basic schools, health centres, police etc. The totality of those processes means that you are distributing GDP to a broader population of the nation. That is the challenge that we face as we go forward.

Madam Speaker, the second challenge is that we must continue with the fiscal discipline that we have demonstrated in 2006 and going back. It is important that this fiscal discipline is continued so that the resources of this particular country are actually used for the purpose for which they are actually meant in the budget.

Hon. UPND Members: Drink water!

Mr Mutati: Beyond fiscal discipline is the issue of the implementation of the budget. What we are saying is that each of us in our sector must make sure that the component of the budget relating to energy and water is implemented so that the jobs that I have articulated are actually created. That is what we must do. In order for us to do this, we must work hand in hand with the Minister of Finance and National Planning, so that there is timely release of resources to facilitate the creation of employment and GDP.

Madam Speaker, all human life has equal rights and the role of government is that all human life has equal wealth. We have climbed many mountains, we have before us the frontier of opportunities and only the people of Zambia can make that difference to make life better for Zambia …

Mr Mtonga: Zoona not China!

Mr Mutati: … to reduce the agonies. We shall be supplemented by our co-operating partners including China in this process.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mutati: In order to make it better, we have got to hold hands because are not an island, at regional and international levels. Always remembering that at the centre of development are the people of Zambia. Always remembering that the transformation we want to achieve is for Zambia and always remembering that GDP will continue to reside in the pockets of the people of Zambia.

I thank you, Sir.

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

Dr Machungwa (Luapula): Madam Speaker, thank you very much, I was beginning to wonder if I am invisible in this House, but I appreciate the opportunity given to contribute to the debate.

Ms Phiri held the microphone for Dr Machungwa.


Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker …

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: On a point of order!

Dr Machungwa: … in contributing to this motion, I first wish to make this point that there is a tendency for all of us to believe that Zambia started only in 2002. Some of the debates I have been hearing from my colleagues on your right side, especially my honourable colleague who has just come into the House …


Dr Machungwa: … he seems to believe in his debate that everything only started in 2002 when the incumbent President was elected, but Zambia has been here. We have achieved so much since independence and we have made so many mistakes also during that time. The important thing is for us to learn from our mistakes and build on our strength …

Mr Mtonga: Zoona!

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: … then as a nation we can go together. However, this business of coming here and say, ‘Only I did this nobody else was able to do that’, will not take us anywhere and will not get us the support and we will not unite as a nation.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: Let me refer to the houses for former Presidents so that I can correct the record for those who have just come and do not know what happened.

Hon. Government Members: Tell us!

Dr Machungwa: When the UNIP Government lost power in 1991, there was no Act which provided for a house for former presidents. In fact what was here was some kind of retirement package that obligated the State to be giving benefits to regional secretaries and people all over the country for which there was no money. For this reason, that law was repealed and in 1992, the Government sent a team to Commonwealth countries to see how former presidents were treated so that we could come up with a law. They went to different countries in the region and in the Commonwealth. After that, extensive consultation was done and that is when a law was enacted by this House providing for benefits for former presidents. However, in that Act it stated that you only provided those benefits when the incumbent retired from politics.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: This is the history. This is why it was difficult to begin building a house for the First Republican President after he had retired because he continued in politics.


Dr Machungwa: You will recall hon. Members, those who were not here, that when the late Kebby Musokotwane took over UNIP, the former President still got him out because he still wanted to continue in politics.

Hon. PF Members: Yes!

Dr Machungwa: Therefore, according to that law, it would have been illegal to provide any of the benefits. It is only after he got out of politics that is when all these things started. So, when you begin to say that they did not do anything, it is because we were following the law.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: This is the history. Please, before you come and paint others black, read a little bit of the history.

Madam Speaker, let me go back to the issue of macro-economic performance. I know the Hon. Minister has been talking about the performance that we have GDP 5.8 growth, inflation has been reduced to 8.2 per cent and other macro-economic indicators are going in the right direction. I do not disagree with that, but macro-economic indicators are only means to an end, they are not the goal.

Ms Chitika: Yes!

Dr Machungwa: These macro-economic indicators only help us if they get to a situation where we see that prices are coming down, wealth is being created, employment is being created, buying power of the people is being created, medical services, schools and education are available, to the extent that these macro-economic indicators are showing a positive direction, but there is no movement in any these, it means nothing. We should not be celebrating. We should redouble our efforts to go in that direction.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: When President Mwanawasa himself officially opened the Tenth National Assembly stated that inspite of these indicators, still we have problems on health, roads and everything. That was the Head of State saying that and this is exactly what we are saying. Whereas these are in the right direction, we should not begin beating drums. Let us wait until the people in Kaputa, Shangombo, Bangweulu Swamps and everywhere else begin to see these benefits. At that point, then we can pat ourselves on the back. For now, I think it is premature. We need to redouble our efforts.

Mr Mtonga: Zoona!

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr D. Mwila: Hammer!

Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker, we have situation where our exchange rate is unstable. Within a year it has lost about a third of its value.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Hon. Government Members: Aah! No!

Dr Machungwa: That is the truth, it is on record. We had gone down to K3, 100 and we are now at K4, 225. The growth is showing, but we are not sure yet if it is sustainable. In fact most of this growth is coming from the mining sector and the mining sector is problematic now because of those development agreements because we are not getting the full benefits. So despite this growth, our people are not able to get the full benefits that we should be getting as a country if this growth was coming from agriculture and the manufacturing sector and the rest of industry. Madam Speaker, these are the issues that we should be remembering.

Madam Speaker, there is the issue of domestic debt. The Government is not able to meet its obligations to local suppliers, the poor people who might have supplied beans to hospitals and prisons. In fact, the Government is lending itself money without paying interest from these people and continues to hold on to this money impoverishing our people and these are issues that must be addressed.

Madam Speaker, in the House when I debated about a year ago, I said that the gain in the strength of the kwacha at one point was because one foreign bank brought US$120 million and invested in Treasury Bills or Government Bonds. This was borrowing locally to strengthen the kwacha and this is why the kwacha went down when they took the money. These are issues which we started in this House but people said we are mad or we just want to oppose. We do not want to oppose Government if it is doing the right thing but you must remember that constitutionally as an Opposition Member of Parliament, I have to stand there and make sure that Government is on its toes to deliver. I am not just going to come here and sing praises, if you have done well, good because that is what we want you to do but when you are making mistakes or not performing, we shall always stand here and remind you that this is what you have to do. You have a contract with the people of Zambia and we need to stand here to make sure that you deliver. If you cannot deliver, we shall get you out.


Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker, in the 2006 Budget, I lamented that company tax, including mineral royalty tax only amounted to 5 per cent of the entire budget. Taxes coming from Pay-As-You-Earn that year amounted to almost 20 per cent of the budget. What this meant was that more and more money was coming from the workers rather than was coming from the companies. It meant that we as workers are subsidising companies because Government must operate and oversee their operations but they are not paying for it.

I have noted, Madam Speaker, that this year there is some slight decrease in that Pay-As-You-Earn taxes now consists only about 17 per cent of the budget and so it has slightly gone down. But nominally in terms of figures, in fact, at K2.88 billion, in fact there is a nominal increase of K58.3 billion, money being collected from taxes. So we are still contributing a very large portion. What we are expecting is that in a country where mining companies, particularly the copper mining companies are experiencing unprecedented income returns as a result of the highest prices of copper in the history of copper in the world, we would expect that may be they will put in a little bit more.

Hon. Minister in fairness to you, I am aware of the development agreements which were negotiated more or less at gun point for Zambia to get into these development agreements. But, what we are saying is that what is it that we can do? You have started the process, but we need to support you and invigorate you so that when you talk to these people, Minister ‘pakwakana ubunga, tapaba insoni’. It means that if you are sharing a cake and you need to take something home to feed your family, you are not going to negotiate like a gentleman and be shy. You go there to negotiate.

What you must understand Minister is that you must go there with your team with vigour, conviction, determination and tenacity, borrow authority and all the eleven million people of Zambia are supporting this. The NGOs, the trade unions and the workers are supporting us, Parliament is supporting Government, even in the international community, all those who are well meaning, people of good will are supporting us because what is happening is day light robbery. So, please, we expect you to go and negotiate in good faith and be very vigorous about it.

Now, let me say this that if these companies are intransigent and do not want to listen, they may end up losing it because they will have to negotiate with the people of Zambia. If our people get in the streets, then it cannot work because they will not be able to mine and make a profit. I wish to pay tribute to First Quantum. First Quantum in 2006 paid US$19 million as tax even though their tax holiday period had not finished because they are making money and they have a conscience that they have to contribute something to Zambia. This is what we are looking for.

Madam Speaker, what I am saying is the obscene and absurd situation which I can liken to a very fat person or man being carried in a hammock by four very thin and malnourished people across very rough and difficult terrain and when they sit to rest, the man eats a lot and the people who are carrying him do not eat at all or may be if there are any crumbs left, that is what they eat and he expects these people to carry him across. What is likely to happen is that when they are trying to cross a stream, they will drop him into the water and he will be caught by a crocodile.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker, at paragraph 96 of the Minister’s speech, he is talking about multi facility economic zones. There will be one in Lusaka and one in Chambeshi on the Copperbelt and Government is going to give incentives to those companies that will be operating there. We are told in the statement that there will be foreign and Zambian companies. The one in Lusaka will be operated by the Japanese, and the one in Chambeshi by the Chinese. We would like to know what kind of incentives these people are going to be given. How sure are we that these incentives and the people there may not only be foreign companies and how sure are we that there will be benefits coming into Zambia. Some mining companies do not pay any tax at all because they claim they are making loses at a time when copper prices are at their highest. What will happen when copper prices go down? Will they ever make profits? What we want to know is what the conditions in these multi facility economic zones are. Are we really going to benefit? Are the Zambians going to be there?

What we must know is that Zambian companies who are already operating in industry also need relief and support in their ventures. The idea that only those coming in can get relief and support is not healthy for our industry. It is time we started supporting our own so that they can be strong and also become foreign investors even in other countries where the economies have collapsed.


Dr Machungwa: I also wish to caution the hon. Minister here that I have nothing personal against the Chinese, but what we know is that having been a developing country themselves there are records in terms of labour practices, payment of wages and even safety is not very good to say the least. So, if that happens in their own country, there is a tendency hon. Minister that when they come here, that is what they practice. We have to be firm hon. Minister of Labour and Social Security to make sure that Zambian labour laws are not breached. If they work here they must follow our standards, the safety standards and safety regulations must be followed. We do not want another kind of KCM thing with this, the Dantel, where they come and pollute. This kind of things never used to happen, at least, not to this extent when we were at ZCCM, even at a time when we had very little money and when the copper prices were very low. Yet, these people come and they are making money and they are polluting and we say no whatever, whatever. No, this type of practice is never accepted anywhere and we should not accept them especially, if people are coming to make profit.


Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker, what I am trying to say is that the people of Zambia deserve something from this boom in copper prices. Although, the economic indicators are in the right direction, I am weary about cerebrating because these have not been felt in my constituency. When we talk about animals like the hon. Deputy Minister was talking about, is not that we hate animals at State House, but when people in the rural health centres have no medicine and you stand up in the House and say, no, we need to treat animals at some somebody’s house, that is obscene.


Dr Machungwa: Can you imagine, say we want to treat them or exchange them and people somewhere have no medicine and then you can stand up and say that. That is totally unacceptable. It is not that we do not want those animals to be treated, but if you treat the people and you feed the people then you can treat all the animals that you want.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Hon. Opposition Member: Zoona!

Madam Speaker called on Hon. Sikatana.

Hon. Opposition Members: Leopard.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs (Mr Sikatana): Let me thank you, Madam Speaker, for this opportunity to contribute to the debates on the budget. It is obvious that this country has reached a point of no return.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikatana: It is obvious that the speech by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning is one that gives us hope that there will sooner than later be a nation that will take an opportunity to take advantage of the signals that we have on the horizon.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikatana: For the first time, I more confident that there is a possibility that my generation will hand over to a generation of responsible hard working non begging Zambians.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikatana: I grow more confident when I see a budget speech that for the first time aims at giving to the Zambians what they deserve. My contribution to this debate is inclined to be foreign. I, for one, feel motivated to see young men and women coming to this House determined to turn the future of this country. A country so in doubt abundantly, for the first time the Zambians will take the lead to develop their country not through imitating people. Zambia is one of the richest countries in the world with one of the poorest people in the world. This contradiction must be corrected by us, this generation.


Mr Sikatana: Madam Speaker, I would like to appeal to Members of this august House to read the budget carefully and see whether you can benefit your constituencies out of this budget.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikatana: I have been to several parts of this country and I am convinced beyond doubt that it is possible that this House could turn the country around. We would like to move in one direction. When you know there is nothing to oppose, do not call yourself an Opposition Member because there is nothing to oppose.


Mr Sikatana: This budget is a challenge. I remember campaigning in 1991 at the removal of the obnoxious One Party State, when I stated at that time, that to us that was a chance. There is nothing unparliamentary when one states that having won ourselves the multiparty system, we should move away from politics of camps, belonging to a camp refusing to reason just because an issue came from hon. Magande. As long as it is Hon. Magande’s budget I shall not take part. I do remember on this Floor of the House when an Opposition Leader stood up and said he would never set foot in the single office of a single Minister of Mwanawasa’s Government and this gentleman never set foot. He was my nephew he managed to lose his election.


Mr Sikatana: It is obvious why because people can now see when you cheat them. You cannot be saying we, swebo tuli ba Opposition, swebo tuli ba Opposition.


Mr Sikatana: The meaning is very simple. On a serious note, Madam Speaker, I would like to comment as follows on this budget. I would like to see the sustenance of what we have achieved in the past. Let us not lose direction of what we have achieved in the past. I am particular about agriculture.

Madam Speaker, I would like us to support our hon. Minister. Obviously there is a change in the weather pattern, which is going to punish us unless we work hard. Therefore, I am always the first to knock at his door to consult so that we make sure that we still work as a team to achieve higher heights in our development.

Madam, think of Japan. In 1945 it was bombarded and reduced to ashes. Today, Japan is the leader. It has developed from those ashes with no natural resources. It is a group of islands in the roughest seas, which are being buffeted by typhoons and hurricanes. Today, Japan is the leader. They do not have metals or natural resource, but only human resources. These are the things that are seeing Japan lead Zambia

We address ourselves as poor people. We go to the same schools. The African will go to school to pass his exam and look for employment. The Japanese will buy the Zambian copper, add value and provide employment to the African under the mines, and the miner still remains a beggar. Where have we gone wrong? There must be somewhere where we have gone wrong. (Pointing his finger to the UPND hon. Members)

Mr Muntanga: Stop pointing fingers.

Mr Sikatana (pointing his arm to the hon. UPND Members): This is why the New Deal Government is now determined to use the best of its brains, having a Budget that focuses …


Mr Sikatana: We are a Government that focuses on the development of the natural …

Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! Order! Please, speak through the Chair.

Mr Sikatana turned towards the Chair with his arm pointing upwards


Mr Sikatana: Madam Speaker, we have a Budget for us to support. There are very few people in this august House that have read through the Budget.

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Sikatana: Otherwise, why would you not support it?


Mr Sikatana: If you have read this Budget, you will arrive at one conclusion and that is support.


Mr Sikatana: Madam Speaker, I wish to refer to Page 15 of the Budget Speech, where the hon. Minister made reference to what he called Multi-Facility Economic Zones.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikatana: Madam, I saw a model of such a zone when we visited the President of China. I saw something. I went to a place called Shenzheen. We were told that 25 years ago Shenzheen was a fishing village. It was a village where there were fishermen like the Tongas and Bembas who live along the river. Today, Shenzheen is a Multi-Facility Economic Zone, which has been built into skyscrapers that you could never believe it. I remember we were on the 98th Floor with my protocol officer. He asked me whether the hotel was moving. I told him that there was no way the hotel could move, but I discovered that it was moving.

I am trying to say that the Chinese are developing at a rate that we must emulate. This is why my ministry will now concentrate on maximising the efforts of the Ministry of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources to bring in as many tourists from China.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Sikatana: Madam Speaker, while in Shenzheen, we showed the Chinese the clips of our Victoria Falls, game and abundant resources, and they said they wanted to visit Zambia as tourists. Somebody from the Opposition said that once we brought in these Chinese, the Chinese women would become pregnant and give birth to Zambians.


Mr Sikatana: What is there to fear?

All I am saying is that in our ministry, we are prepared to ensure that the many missions that we have all over the world start working towards improving our economy. They are not there to just welcome you when you go overseas. The foreign policy is intended to benefit Zambia.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikatana: For instance, as we open new missions, we intend to see improvement in our career professionals. As a ministry, we have just opened the institute, which is going to train specialists in diplomatic service. As I am speaking now, we have opened the institute at the new Government buildings. It used to be a complex.

Hon. UPND Members: For UNIP?

Mr Sikatana: No, for Government.


Mr Sikatana: Our aim is to ensure that those that get employed in our missions are educated and trained to run diplomatic missions.

Mr Muntanga: Will you recall all of them?

Mr Sikatana: We shall not recall all of them. We shall be bringing them in groups to give them refresher courses in the running of diplomatic missions.

Mr Matongo interrupted

Mr Sikatana: I will not be diverted into discussing family trees.


Mr Sikatana: Madam Speaker, we have only ourselves to blame because we have friends like China that mean well.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Hon. Government Member: What about Taiwan?

Mr Sikatana: I do not know about Taiwan. I saw it from a distance and I am convinced that we are on the right course. We have come to a point where we should call a spade a spade and call a good budget, a good budget. Why? This is because it has been analytical. He has concluded his budget by drawing our attention to what he intends to achieve, and I quote:

‘Sir, the Government expects to raise a total of K12,042.4 billion. Out of this amount, K8, 125 billion will be generally locally collected while K3,374 billion will be sourced externally’.

I have checked agriculture. It has been given a share that will manage the economy of this country to continue to feed Southern Africa.

Finally, I am appealing to the Opposition parties. I agree with the hon. Member for Luapula that we should work together for the benefit of our own children. We will be held responsible if we fail. It will be all of us to blame. Mr Speaker advised us today that if we lose, it will be all of us to lose. I am finally saying that farmers like hon. Muntanga will remain to respect those that he thinks all they can do is just swim.

With these few remarks, I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The Minister of Labour and Social Security (Mr Mukuma): Madam Speaker, I am very grateful for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the debate on the 2007 Budget.

Madam Speaker, since this is also my maiden speech, …

Hon. Opposition Members: Ah.

Mr Mukuma: …I wish to take this opportunity to congratulate His Excellency the President, Mr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, for securing a second term in office during the last tripartite elections.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mukuma: I also wish to congratulate Mr Speaker for being re-elected and to you, Madam Speaker, for being elected unopposed in your position. These are clear signs that the House has great confidence in you and that you are delivering the services. Lastly, but not the least, I wish to pay tribute to the people of Kabompo East for the responsibility entrusted onto me to be their representative in this House.

Madam Speaker, I salute first all the people of Kabompo East Constituency and the people of North-Western Province…

Mr Tetamashimba: Hear, hear!

Mr Mukuma: …for a wonderful job they did for overwhelmingly voting for President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa. SC.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mukuma: …and MMD back into power for the second time.

Madam Speaker, the pattern of voting in North-Western Province is a clear indication that the people in North-Western Province actually know where they are coming from, where they are and where they are going. I believe that they actually refused to go in the boat because they know it would sink in the middle of the river.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mukuma: Madam Speaker, the 2007 Budget dabbed from stability to improved service delivery is a budget that gives hope to our people and it indeed needs support of all the people including us in this august House.

Madam Speaker, the achievement of the 5.8 per cent GDP growth rate as at the end of the year 2006 is good for Zambia while the attainment of 8.2 per cent inflation rate is indeed phenomenal. Let us look at this achievement not from the negative angle, but all of us should pat ourselves on our backs for a job well done because to achieve an inflation rate of 8.2 per cent and a GDP growth of 5.8 per cent is indeed a great achievement which all of us as Zambians should pat ourselves on our backs.

Madam Speaker, I stand here confident in my support of the macro-economic objectives that this year’s budget seeks to pursue, namely, the attainment of 5 per cent inflation figure and 7 per cent GDP growth rate. I am confident that if all of us worked together, these targets that we have set ourselves are attainable provided there are no forces that are pulling in the opposite direction.

In preparing the Vision 2030, there was a very wide consultation done and, therefore, the Vision 2030 from which the Fifth National Development Plan and indeed the budget we are debating now are drawn from, is the vision of the whole nation and, therefore, all of us have a common vision. If all of us operate with this common vision in the same direction, these targets that we have set ourselves are easily attainable.

Without doubt, we are on the right economic path to our victory as a nation. As I stated in my ministerial statement on the employment and labour sector delivered to this august House last month, Zambia is currently faced with the challenge of low formal sector employment.

Madam Speaker, the solution to this lies in sustaining economic growth at significant levels of 7 per cent or above as determined by our labour economics. Our labour force is rapidly increasing and this calls for the need to target 5 economic growth rates sufficient to creating investment and resultant jobs so as to absorb people who enter the job market every year.

Madam Speaker, the fear of jobless growth has compelled to not only reflect the issue of job creation in the theme of the Fifth National Development Plan, but also make it an essential and explicit feature in macro-economic policy as evinced in the 2007 Budget. The continued planting of incentives necessary for the growth of key sectors of agriculture, tourism, and construction among others will indeed benefit our people directly through the increased job creation or indirectly through the improved social services.

The improved levels and efficiency in the provision of production of farming inputs has greatly improved agricultural production resulting into creation of new jobs in the sector.

Madam Speaker, there is no doubt that the Fertiliser Support Programme and the food security parts has actually revitalised our agricultural sector. There is significant improvement in the production of agricultural sector because of the fertiliser support programme. I, therefore, commend the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning for maintaining these programmes in this year’s Budget because I know that the sector will continue to develop and create jobs.

Madam Speaker, cognisant of the fact that the challenge of job creation calls for a multi-dimensional, but coherent approach, the Government has put in place a number of measures to create the right environment for sustainable job creation. The measures put in place are:

1. The Private Sector Development Programme

Madam Speaker, it is only by becoming internationally competitive through increased export oriented growth will we accelerate economic growth and create enough formal sector, jobs and reduce poverty. Again, the Budget presented by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning has given us explicit programmes on the improvement of the investment climate in the country. This is the creation of the Zambia Development Agency which is an organisation that has been created for the so purpose of reducing the cost of doing business in Zambia by amalgamating the functions of dissolved institutions namely; the Zambia Investment Centre, Export Board of Zambia, Zambia Privatisation Agency, Zambia Export Processing Zones Authority and the Small Enterprises Development Board.

The establishment of multi economic facility zones and the incentives offered to firms under these zones are another instrument aimed at enhancing job creation. These programmes are, indeed, aimed at creating jobs as we have been told that 60,000 jobs will be created in the Chambeshi Zone.

Madam Speaker, one aspect of the Private Sector Development Programme is the enhancement of labour market flexibility through the review of labour laws perceived to be stifling investment growth.

2. Citizen Economic Empowerment Policy

The Government attaches great importance to the empowerment of its citizens through promotion of their well being. In this regard, Government has adopted a citizen empowerment strategy whose major objectives is to expand citizens ownership in the economy without discouraging current and potential investors. To underscore this commitment, funds have been allocated to operationalise the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission whose commissioners have already been appointed.

Madam Speaker, this policy is a noble one as it is meant to unlock the growth potential of the small-scale and medium scale enterprise sector through business development support and empowerment initiative. Among others, the major benefit envisaged by the policy are; the increase in management presence of Zambians in major companies, promotion of empowerment of disadvantaged groups such as women; the physically handicapped and the youths; establishment special purpose vehicles for financing empowerment initiatives; and equitable distribution of land to targeted citizens.

3. National Employment Labour Market Policy

Madam Speaker, in line with the Fifth National Development Plan which contains a Chapter on employment and labour, the National Employment and Labour Market Policies is expected to guide and provide a framework for the implementation of programmes in the employment and labour sector. This main objective of the policy is to create equitable and polity jobs under conditions that ensure adequate income and protection of workers’ basic rights. With this policy implemented, the Government expects to stimulate growth in key and potential sectors as cited above.

Madam Speaker, the employment of labour market policy has devised a number of measures to address current challenges on the labour market notably among these measures include the following:

- revitalisation of the public employment exchange services;

- revitalisation of the apprenticeship programmes to address the problem of skills;

- implementation of programmes to withdraw and rehabilitate child labour;

- reviewing of the Zambianisation programme with a view to enhancing its effectiveness and to avoid Zambia be a damping ground for cheap labour from outside; and

- constant reviewing of labour laws with the view to facilitate employment creation while safeguarding workers’ rights.

4. Promotion of Decent work

Madam Speaker, one programme adopted by the Government has been the promotion of decent work. The decent work agenda as the resultant country programme are products of the World Summit for Social Development in 1995 and the 24th Session of the United National General Assembly in 2002. Both of which called upon the International Labour Organisation to develop a coherent and coordinated international strategy for the promotion of freely chosen and productive employment in order to fight poverty. The recent work programme is in tandem with the Fifth National Development Programme revolves around the following areas:

- promotion and realisation of standards and fundamental principles of rights
- works; creation of greater opportunities for women and men;

- enhancement of the coverage and effectiveness of social protection for all; and

-  strengthening of social dialogue.

Madam Speaker, my speech would be incomplete if I do not pay tribute to my colleague, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning for yet again committing resources to the fight against the HIV/AIDS pandemic. This problem needs to be fought because if we relent in this fight, our economy will soon be on its knees due to the loss of skilled and experienced workers.

Madam Speaker, eight years from now, the world would be taking stock of the achievements made towards the attainment of the millennium development goals. I believe Zambia will be amongst the family of nations that will have managed to get her people out of the extreme poverty and will have achieved the rest of the MDGs targets.

Finally, I wish to state that these programmes of Zambianisation, the programme of decent work are all aimed at protecting the Zambian Labour Force, coupled by the training that the Government has embarked on through the Ministry of Science, Technology and Vocational Training, where appropriate technology is being given to our youths to enable them acquire jobs on the market. These are market driven skills, which will enable the youth to get the work on the markets. Part of the contribution to the unemployed among our youth is lack of appropriate skills that are demanded on the market, which the Government now is concentrating on impacting to our youth. I therefore, wish to appeal to my colleagues in this House that the Budget is very progressive and that we need to support the it in order to achieve our targets.

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Minister of Justice (Mr Kunda): Madam Speaker, thank you for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the policy debate on the 2007 Budget.

Madam Speaker, this Budget is a good beginning for this Parliament. The Budget addresses most of the issues raised during the free and fair tripartite elections of 28th September, 2006 and is also a basis for continuity of programmes which remained uncompleted during the first five year term of the New Deal Administration.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: Madam Speaker, with regard to my ministry, I must say that the Budget is excellent and it has addressed some of the concerns and programmes of my ministry. In particular, the Budget has addressed governance and constitutional review issues broadly and within the context of the Fifth National Development Plan (FNDP) and vision 2030.

Madam Speaker, the New Deal Government has a new approach to development. Our development is now governed by development plans such as the FNDP. Development and resources allocation will be guided by this plan for the next five years. I am inviting members of this august House to carefully study the development plan and analyse developmental issues by reference to that plan. With this new approach, I am confident that the people of Zambia, including those of Muchinga Constituency will benefit.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: On law reform, my ministry shall continue with its law reform efforts in the next five years. The Budget under consideration has made provision for the proper functioning of the Attorney-General’s office and our Drafting Department. We shall continue to draft legislation, review and repeal outdated laws and enact new legislation.

Madam Speaker, most of our laws remain outdated and with the co-operation of other ministries, we should be able to review these laws. During the last Parliament, from 2002 to 2006, we drafted and enacted a total of eighty-eight statutes. We hope to do better than this during the next five years.

Madam Speaker, I must also announce that this year, we shall commence the revision of the laws of Zambia which were last reviewed in 1995. I am talking about the green volumes which were last revised in 1995 and we have provided for this activity in the budget.

Madam Speaker, on the famous subject of the Constitutional Review, this process is on course. The Constitution Review Process Implementation Committee tasked to draw a roadmap and look into financial implications has already submitted its report and the Government has already released its’ roadmap for the review of the constitution. The roadmap is backed by law and it is on record that Government has already committed itself to introducing a Constituent Assembly for purposes of this review. However, we have stated before that we will not employ short cuts in the review process and that financial implications will have to be carefully analyzed. This year we have already allocated K202 billion for the initial processes such as census covered under the roadmap. As soon as the budget is approved, we shall commence work.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: Even as we commit resources to the Constitution Review Process including processes such as Constituent Assembly, Referendum and Census we must be mindful of the needs of our people. As a Government, we have exhibited seriousness by providing for the Constitutional Review Process and it is now up to this august House to consider this expenditure in accordance with Parliamentary Practice and Procedure.

Madam Speaker, I also want to talk about delimitation of constituencies.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: As we pursue Constitutional Reforms, I must emphasise the need to delimit or demarcate some of the constituencies like Muchinga, Katombola and several others which are too big.

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Kunda: In doing this, the Government will refer to the delimitation report prepared by the Electoral Commission of Zambia. This is the only way we can achieve effective representation of our people. This recommendation is also part of the ERTC Report. There is need to increase the number of constituencies from the current 150 constituencies.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: Increasing the number of constituencies can be done without a Constituent Assembly or the bolding of a referendum. All we need to do is to merely amend the constitution.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: Thus as we review the constitution, we should think seriously about the delimitation of constituencies.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: Madam Speaker, another important aspect of our constitution which can be changed without a Constituent Assembly or a Referendum is the budget cycle. Approving the budget in the first quarter of the year is not conducive to development. There is need to change the budget cycles so that the budget is approved before 1st January each year.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: With this kind of cycle, there will be enough time for spending the money from January to December of each year.

Madam Speaker, I also wish to talk about contractors. As Minister of Justice, and as a Member of Parliament from a rural constituency, I wish to talk about the attitude of some of the Zambian contractors.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: Government has tried to empower Zambian contractors by giving them preference in the awarding of contracts. However, the performance of some of the Zambian contractors leaves much to be desired.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda:  Some contractors engaged in building bridges, schools and health centres have abandoned projects after receiving huge sums of money from the Government. Even in the current budget some money will go to Zambian contractors.

My ministry has received several complaints of this nature from client ministries. Some of the contractors are known to buy Mercedes Benz and other posh cars, go on holiday outside the country etc, after receiving down payments and later abandon Government projects.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: There are many abandoned projects which I am aware of as Minister of Justice and former Attorney-General.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: This kind of attitude which is common among Zambians flies in the teeth of the policy of empowerment which we are pursuing as a Government.

Mr Sichilima: Lock them up!

Mr Kunda: As a Government we shall pursue such contractors through the courts of law …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kunda: ... by way of civil or criminal proceedings where appropriate.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear! Hammer!

Mr Kunda: My appeal to Zambian contractors is to be honest and to assist Government in developing the country. We are committed to empowerment, but contractors must observe the law when dealing.

Madam Speaker, on governance, I am pleased to inform this august House that we have commenced the Access to Justice Programme under my ministry. The programme is intended to improve access to justice for the poor and it is part of the Fifth National Development Plan (FNDP). The Access to Justice Program will be funded by DANIDA. My ministry will also continue to provide legal aid, prosecutorial services, legal opinion, drafting laws, agreements etc.

Finally, the fight against corruption will also be intensified. However, as a Government we would also like to see a situation where governance institutions, such as the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC), the Director of Public Prosecution’s (DPP) office, the Ministry of Home Affairs and my ministry are strengthened. There is need for training, capacity building and allocation of more resources to these institutions if the fight against corruption is to succeed.

The preservation of public resources is fundamental, hence the need to work together, so as to achieve a corrupt free environment. As we pursue the fight against corruption, I must also emphasise that we observe the rule of law and human rights.
I thank you, Madam.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr C. Mulenga (Chinsali): Madam Speaker, I would like to thank you for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the budget.

Mr Kasongo: Hammer! Ulande pali Lenshina!

Mr C. Mulenga: I am particularly concerned with the high levels of poverty that our people are currently experiencing throughout the country.

Hon. PF Member: Hammer!

Mr C. Mulenga: Madam Speaker, in the fifteen years that the MMD Government has ruled this nation, they have completely failed to create meaningful wealth to reduce poverty levels in the nation.

Hon. PF Member: Hear, hear!

Mr C. Mulenga: This is confirmed by the President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC …

Madam Deputy Speaker: Order!

(Debate adjourned)


The House adjourned at 1955 hours until 1430 hours on Wednesday, 28th February, 2007.