Debates- Wednesday, 7th February, 2007

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Wednesday, 7th February, 2007

The House met at 1430 hours

[THE SPEAKER in the Chair]






Mr Speaker: I wish to inform the House that, following the appointment of Hon. Ackimson Banda, MP to the position of Deputy Chief Whip, Hon. Maynard Misapa, MP, has been appointed to replace Hon. Ackimson Banda, MP, as Member of Parliament of the Pan-African Parliament.

Thank you.



239. Mr Lubinda asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a) which markets had been and were constructed under the urban markets programme and how much was allocated to each one of these;

(b) what level of construction the markets at (a) above as of July, 2006 were; and

(c) what the financing arrangements for the markets were.

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Kazonga): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform this august House that part (a) of the question is as follows: 

Under the Urban Markets Development Programme that is supported by the European Union (EU), Nyumba Yanga and Libala markets have been constructed while the following markets are being constructed in Lusaka, Kitwe and Ndola: -

Lusaka   Kitwe    Ndola

Soweto   Nakadoli   Chisokone
Chelstone   Ndeke    Chifubu
Buseko   Buchi Kamitondo   Ndeke 
Chilenje       Mine Masala

However, Mr Speaker, due to budgetary constraints coupled with exchange rate fluctuations following the appreciation of the Kwacha during the period September, 2005 to August, 2006 respectively, there were inadequate financial resources. Consequently, construction of the following markets will not be completed:

(a) Buseko in Lusaka; and

(b) Chifubu and Mine Masala in Ndola

Mr Speaker, the amounts allocated by the EU for the construction of the markets are as follows: -

Market  Contract Sum (ZK)

Soweto   25,398,000
Chelstone   6,716,615,000
Chilenje   7,431,661,599

Mr Speaker, the contract sum for building the programmed markets in Kitwe is K13,699,052,853, while the contract for building the markets in Ndola has not yet been awarded because no bidder came forward when advertisements were placed in the print media. Therefore, the tender for the construction of these markets will be re-advertised.

Mr Speaker, the stages of construction of the markets varies from market to market. Construction of some markets started earlier than others. As of July, 2006, the construction of markets on the Copperbelt was at foundation level, while that of markets in Lusaka was at window plate level.

Mr Speaker, on part (c) of the question, financing arrangements for the markets are in the form of a joint counterpart financing. The total cost of constructing the markets is financed by the Government and the EU that has provided a grant to the programme.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Lubinda: Mr Speaker, Nyumba Yanga, Libala and Chilenje markets were constructed under the EU Urban Market Programme Phase I, which commenced somewhere in 1997/1999 and the construction of Chilenje Market commenced round about that period. We have just been informed that K7 billion was allocated and was to be released by the EU for the construction of Chilenje Market, but this was ten years ago. I would like to find out from the hon. Minster what is delaying the completion of the construction of Chilenje Market that was in the first phase of the Urban Market Programme.

The Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mrs Masebo): Mr Speaker, as the hon. Deputy Minister has indicated, there were problems of monies that were allocated as a result of the devaluation of the Kwacha. I recall that this question was asked in 2005 and at the time a contractor had been engaged for some of the markets in Kabwata Constituency. This project was abandoned by the contractor and another contractor was engaged. In fact, the contractor did not abandon the works, but the works were shoddy because the ministry had not released any further resources to the contractor. I informed the House about this.

Mr Speaker, I want to say that the programme for the construction of markets is on course and I would like to assure this august House that we are doing everything possible as a Government to ensure that the markets are completed on time. For Ndola, the monies have been released and there was a tender advert on two occasions, but we have not been able to attract a qualified contractor to undertake the construction of markets in Ndola. Again, we are re-advertising for the third time. So, there are all these logistical problems sometimes that are beyond the Government, but hinder progress in accordance with our plan.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr E. Mwansa (Chifunabuli): Mr Speaker, I would like to get the hon. Minister’s assurance that upon completion of the construction of markets, people vending on the streets will be accommodated in the markets.

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, the construction of markets is a Government programme aimed at providing more space for the informal sector. However, I would like to state that the public should not expect the markets to accommodate everybody from the streets. This is because obviously, the space will always be inadequate.

Sir, it is not true that all the people on the streets of Lusaka today do not have market spaces in their respective markets. Some of them have abandoned the market spaces on account that it is no longer profitable and that it is faster for them to sell their produce on the streets. This is why my ministry has been asking the street vendors to get back to the markets because as a Government, we know that currently there are some market spaces that are empty. In some cases, people have left the markets because the local authorities are not sending away the street vendors from the streets, and yet they are paying market fees to the local authorities and are abiding by the rules but are not protected. In some cases, people have stationed containers at the markets and sell commodities that are sold in markets at wholesale prices as the case is in the Lusaka city markets.

Therefore, the Government is not guaranteeing that once the markets have been constructed, all the vendors will leave the streets. The problem of street vending can be resolved before the completion of the markets.

I thank you, Sir.


240. Mr Imenda (Lukulu East) asked the Vice-President what action the Government was taking towards transforming the SADC Parliamentary Forum into a Regional Parliament.

The Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services (Mr Mwaanga): Mr Speaker, the process of transforming the SADC Parliamentary Forum into a Regional Parliament is a regional effort to which Zambia is a part. The august House may wish to know that the SADC Summit welcomed the proposal to establish a Regional Parliament. However, it was the view of the summit that the institution of the recently established Pan African Parliament (PAP) should take precedent over the SADC Parliament.

Sir, the summit resolved that as the region hosting the Pan African Parliament, Southern Africa should for the time being work for the successful establishment of a Continental of Parliament and consequently, the establishment of the Regional Parliament would be tabled before the summit for reconsideration.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Imenda: Mr Speaker, I thought that the priorities were that we have a National Parliament then the regional one that will build up a continental one. Is it in order for us to start from the top coming down?

Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, the Abuja Declaration of 1991 clearly stated that there should be regional bodies that should be formed and act as building blocks of the formation of a Pan African Parliament. The Pan African Parliament is contained as one of the five major organs in the Constitutive Act of the African Union. So, what is happening is consistent with the Abuja Declaration of 1991 and what is contained in the Constitutive Act of the African Union.

I thank you, Sir.


241. Mr Kasongo (Bangweulu) asked the Minister of Education:

(a) how many basic schools were currently in the country; and

(b) what measures the Government had taken to up-grade basic schools to high school status.

The Minister of Education (Professor Lungwangwa): Mr Speaker, there are 4,235 Basic Schools, 461 grant aided Basic Schools, 351 private or church managed Basic Schools and 2,568 community schools. In all there are 7,615 Basic Schools countrywide.

Sir, the Ministry of Education has stopped upgrading Basic Schools to High Schools due to lack of appropriate infrastructure. The system of upgrading in some instances displaced the basic school level because of the inadequate planning for the upgrading. The Ministry plans to build medium day high schools to cater for the cluster of basic schools in a catchment area.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kasongo: Mr Speaker, governments which have recorded improvements in their economy and also the quality of life of their people are those that put emphasis in the development of human resource. Is the hon. Minister saying that he will not make any effort through his Ministry to change the current situation?

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, that question is very vague, but from a polemic point of view, with your indulgence, I would say that indeed, countries that have made it economically, especially the tiger nations of the Far East, have placed emphasis on human resource development. Clearly, the Fifth National Development Plan that was launched two weeks ago places human resource development as a major foundation for our economic take-off to transform this country into a medium-income country. Therefore, Zambia is not very far away from what has been done by other countries that have made major economic strides in terms of development.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Malama (Mfuwe): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister of Education what measures the Government is putting in place to ensure that there is infrastructure in basic schools that have been upgraded to high schools such as Katiba Mission in Mfuwe Constituency.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, that sounds like a specific question in terms of what is happening to the upgraded high schools if I understood the question correctly. If the hon. Member wants to know exactly what has taken place in the respective schools, he can ask the question and we shall provide detailed answers.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mukanga (Kantanshi): Mr Speaker, if I got the hon. Minister correctly, he said there were about 2,561 community basic schools, and that is a quarter of the total basic schools in the country. I would like to find out whether this is not indicative of the fact that the education system in Zambia has collapsed.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, it has been stated time and again that the development of the school system in our country is based on the policy of partnerships and community initiatives have proved to be partnerships. The community has responded to the need for the provision of education. As a ministry, we take that as an indication not of the collapse of the education system, but actual development of the education sector.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kambwili (Roan): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister of Education whether this Government considered the delivery of quality education in the upgrading of schools because most of the schools that have been upgraded to high school have no laboratories at all. For instance, Twashuka Secondary School in Roan Constituency does not have a laboratory.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, that is exactly the reason the upgrading system has been stopped because the basic indicators of education quality such as the availability of science laboratories have been a problem in schools that have been upgraded. Therefore, we are planning for the education sector and planning is at the centre of the management of the education system. After all planning dictates that we do things rightly. As far as the provision of high school education is concerned, we are doing it by constructing high schools rather than upgrading the existing basic schools.

I thank you, Sir.


242. Mr Kasongo asked the Minister of Foreign Affairs when the New Partnership for Africa Development (NEPAD) National Action Plan would be implemented.

The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs (Mr Mulongoti): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform this august House that Zambia’s blue print on the NEPAD Initiative was completed during the first half of 2006. Its launch awaits consideration and approval by the Inter-Ministerial Committee comprising selected ministers, and subsequently the launch will be done by His Excellency the President, Mr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, and is part of the programme of the Republic of Zambia for 2007.

Mr Speaker, as hon. Members of the House will be aware, NEPAD is a pledge by African leaders based on a common vision of African leaders and firm and shared conviction that they have a pressing duty to eradicate poverty to put their countries on the path of sustainable growth and development and at the same time participate actively in the world economy and politics. The programmes and projects identified under NEPAD pertain to infrastructure, energy, human resource, tourism development and poverty eradication.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mulongoti laid the paper on the Table.

Mr Kasongo: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out whether it is possible for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to update this House on developments regarding NEPAD through the appropriate committee so that we remain current.

Mr Mulongoti: Mr Speaker, I have taken note of that and from time to time, it will be done. So, I want to assure the House that this is a programme that synchronises with the goals for the Fifth National Development Plan and Vision2030.

Thank you, Sir.


245. Mr Chimbaka (Bahati) asked the Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives when transport would be provided to the District Agricultural Co-ordinator and the Research Department in Mansa.

The Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives (Mr Kalenga): Mr Speaker, transport has been and is still a major problem in the Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives throughout the country for some time now due to inadequate funding. However, efforts are being made by the Ministry to mobilise funds through the budget process to procure transport. Once procured, the District Agricultural Co-ordinator and Research Department in Mansa will benefit together with other districts in the country.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chimbaka: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister aware that there is a programme in Luapula Province whose successes hinges on the availability of transport in order for agricultural officers to go out to the whole province to sensitise the people for them to access finances and that without transport, this will not be possible? If he is aware, what is the immediate solution to facilitate the implementation of this important programme?
Mr Kalenga: Mr Speaker, as I stated in my response, I have admitted that transport is a major problem and we are doing everything possible when funds are available to provide transport as this problem does not affect the North-Western Province only, but the whole country.

I thank you, Sir.


246. Mr Chimbaka asked the Minister of Finance and National Planning how much money the Government owed the Public Service Pension Fund.

Mr Chimbaka: Mr Speaker, as the question has been overtaken by events, I would like to withdraw it.

Mr Speaker: The hon. Member says that the question has been overtaken by events. So, the question, perhaps, should be given permission by the House to be withdrawn.


248. Mr Hamir (Chitambo) asked the Minister of Education whether the Government had any plans to provide solar panels to schools in Chitambo Parliamentary Constituency.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, the ministry has plans to provide solar light power to rural schools, including those in Chitambo Parliamentary Constituency when funds are available. This is an on-going exercise to improve the living conditions of teachers in rural areas.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamir: Mr Speaker, I would like to know when this will take off and at the same time, I would like to find out whether there are any plans to electrify schools that are nearer to ZESCO lines.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, as I said earlier, this is an on-going exercise and the provision of solar power will be considered when resources are available and that equally applies to the second part of the question.

I thank you, Sir.


249. Mr Hamir asked the Minister of Health:

(a) why the construction of clinics at Yoram Mwanje and Mulaushi in Chitambo Parliamentary Constituency was discontinued; and

(b) when the construction of the clinics at (a) above would resume.

The Deputy Minister of Health (Dr, Puma): Mr Speaker, the construction was discontinued due to inadequate funding that was released for the two projects. A total of K225 million was released for Mulaushi while Yoram Mwanje received K200 million.

In answer to part (b) of the Question, I wish to inform the hon. Member that the works have resumed and is in progress.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamir: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out if there are any plans to build more clinics in my constituency.

 Ms Cifire: Mr Speaker, we have guidelines on the health posts and centres that have to be built in Mwanje and so far, we have budgeted for another forty health posts. So, the hon. Member can come and check whether the health centres in the particular areas are among the forty so that we see what progress we can make.

I thank you, Sir.


250. Mr Misapa (Mporokoso) asked the Minister of Energy and Water Development whether the Government had plans to build a hydro-power station at Lumangwe and Kabweluma Water Falls in Mporokoso District to mitigate against the looming power deficit likely to be experienced by 2008.

Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, I would like to apologise for the absence of the hon. Ministers.

Mr Speaker, the Ministry is working towards the development of the Lumangwe forty mega watts, Kabwelume sixty-two mega watts and Kandabwika 101 mega watts hydropower sites on the Kalungwishi River through the private sector. Two bidders have been pre-qualified and proposals have been received and are currently being evaluated. The implementation schedule for the project is as follows:

 (a) completion of the project   February, 2007

 (b) selection of preferred bidder   March, 2007

 (c) negotiations     May, 2007

 (d) signing of implementation agreement  June, 2007

 (e) mobilisation by the developer   June to December, 2007

 (f) commencement of construction   2008

 (g) project commissioning    2011
To meet the anticipated growth in national power demands, the following measures are implemented:

(a) Power Rehabilitation project 
The rehabilitation and up-rating of the existing power stations will result in an incremental capacity of 210 mega watts. The Kariba North Bank Power Station will be up-rated from 600 mega watts to 720 mega watts while the Kafue Gorge Power Station will be up-rated from 900 mega watts to 990 mega watts. Currently, about 50 per cent of the up-rating works have been done and it is expected that the full works will be completed by the year 2008;

(b) Interconnections to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) 
Mr Speaker, plans are under way to construct additional transmission lines to the DRC in order to increase the power transfer capacity from the current 250 mega watts to more than 500 mega watts. The measure includes the construction of the second 220 kv line to DRC and 330 kv line from Kolwezi in DRC to Solwezi in Zambia via Lumwana. This will ensure and enhance reliability and security for power supply to the mines and the country as a whole as well as enhancing the regional electricity trade capacity. These interconnections will be completed by 2009;

(c) Interconnections to Tanzania and Kenya 
The Government of Zambia, Tanzania and Kenya have agreed to build a power line to interconnect the power systems in order to promote trade and enhance reliability and security of supply so as to foster economic development and regional integration. The project has the following components:

(i) A 330 kv transmission line emanating from Serenje to Mbeya in Tanzania with a 330 kv/66kv substation at Kasama;

(ii) A 330kv transmission line from Mbeya to Singida in Tanzania; and

(iii) A 330 kv transmission line from Arusha in Tanzania to Nairobi in Kenya.

This project will facilitate power trade of up to 400 mega watts between SADC and the East African Community (EAC)

(d) Power Generation Projects 
The hydro power projects being implemented to contribute to the national and regional power balance include:

(i) Itezhi-Tezhi Project (120 mega watts);

(ii) Kafue Gorge Lower project (600 –750 mega watts);

(iii) Kalungwishi Project (200 mega watts);

(iv) Kabompo Gorge Project (34 mega watts); and

(v) Small Hydropower Projects around the country.

Mr Speaker, I thank you, Sir.

Mr Imenda: Mr Speaker, since there is a heavy deficit of power in the country, the explanation given by the Acting Leader of Business in the House clearly shows that most of the power which will be generated will be exported to neighbouring countries. Are we not creating a situation where we will have a shortage of power like in the situation of the Western Province where we are exporting most of our power to Namibia?

Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, on the contrary, our programme envisages achieving self sufficiency in Zambia before exporting. We also have a regional obligation to ensure that we share power with neighbouring countries were this is possible. I can assure the hon. Member that we will not export power at the expense of Zambia’s own need.

I thank you, Sir.

Milupi (Luena): Mr Speaker, the Acting Leader of Government Business stated that the Government is going to construct two lines between Luano and the Democratic Republic of Congo at 220KV that will give us a total of 520 mega watts. He further stated that there will be another line going to Kolwezi at 330KV. Does he not think that if all this is to be done by 2009, the construction of this 330KV line from Kolwezi would be a duplication of effort?

Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, I do not think this will be a duplication of efforts. I believe that the two projects are complementary and not contradictory.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}


251. Mr Misapa asked the Minister of Education when Lupunga Basic School in Mporokoso Parliamentary Constituency will be electrified.

Mr Speaker, this question was answered by the hon. Minister of Energy and Water Development, unless the hon. Education of Education has something to comment on it.

I thank you, Sir.


252. Mr Mukanga asked the Minister Lands:

(a) when the title deeds would be issued to those who bought ex-ZCCM housing units during the privatisation of parastatal companies; and

(b) how many housing units were sold by ZCCM to sitting tenants, province by province.

The Deputy Minister of Lands (Mr Muteteka): Mr Speaker, I wish to state as follows:

ZCCM houses were sold to mine workers in 1997 in lieu of accrued terminal benefits. The Ministry of Lands, working with ZCCM Investment Holdings, was mandated to issue title deeds for about 45,000 units which were sold on the Copperbelt, Kabwe, Lusaka and Nampundwe. Most of the units were on block title and therefore, there was a need to conduct a cadastral survey for each unit to facilitate the issuance of title deeds to individual purchasers.

Mr Speaker, the surveying and lodgement of the properties is within the mandate of ZCCM Investment Holding Limited and the processing of title deeds for these properties is dependant on how fast ZCCM Investment Holding Limited can survey and lodge the documents to the Department of Deeds Registration in the Ministry of Lands. The role of the Ministry is to complete the registration process of the properties.

Mr Speaker, over 24,000 units have been surveyed, leaving about 21,000 units. Out of the surveyed 24,000 units, 12,254 units have been lodged with the Ministry of Lands for title deeds. The lodgement has resulted in the issuance of the 12,254 title deeds to-date.

The question of how many units were sold by ZCCM should have been directed to Ministry of Mines and Minerals Development. However, the breakdown of the housing units sold by ZCCM to sitting tenants province by province is as follows:

Province     Total
Copperbelt      43,559
Central (Kabwe and Nampundwe)    2,175
Lusaka            83
Total      45,817

 Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out why it has taken the Government ten years to produce a mere paper in the form of title deeds.

Mr Muteteka: Mr Speaker, in my answer, I informed this august House that the issuance of title deeds depends on how urgent ZCCM Investment Holding lodges the documents to the Ministry of Lands and Deeds. As long as these documents have not been lodged, it is very difficult for our Ministry to issue the title deeds.

Mr Speaker, from what we have received so far, more than 12,000 title deeds have been issued to purchasers.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa (Luapula): Mr Speaker, the selling of houses to sitting tenants and miners was …

Mr Nkombo: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, I thank you very much for allowing me to raise a point of order. Sir, I need your serious ruling on this point of order.

Is the Government in order to permit Zambian companies such as the Zambia State Insurance Corporation Limited to lose their financial muscle by tolerating imbalanced arrangements where TAZAMA and Indeni have decided to move their insurance policies from the Zambia State Insurance Corporation as a follow up to ZESCO’s decision last year to move their insurance policy from the Zambia State Insurance Corporation, a company owned by the people of this country, to a privately owned company Professional Insurance Corporation Limited.

Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!

Mr Nkombo: According to the story in today’s Post newspaper which I shall lay on the Table, they have decided to insure their plant and machinery with a private company whose owner, I believe, is someone who is in court with this same Government in a disputed K52 billion law suit. I need your serious ruling.

Mr Nkombo laid the paper on the table.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: The hon. Member for Mazabuka has raised an incomplete point of order. He said that he was sighting an authority in favour of the document he has laid on the Table of the House, but he did not quote from that document he has laid on the Table of the House. That is difficult number one

Difficult number two is that that kind of a point of order as I stated a couple of weeks ago, is not considered a proper point of order to be raised in this House. I did say two weeks ago that there was an elaborate ruling on the matter of what constitutes a point of order in this House based on other authorities in addition to ourselves here. I believe that rule is about to be circulated.

I want to guide the hon. Member that if you feel the subject is urgent, you are free to approach the Clerk of the National Assembly using Standing Order No. 30 for the Executive to answer. Therefore, you are free to use that force-track route if you feel the matter is urgent.

Hon. Member for Luapula was raising a supplementary question.

Dr Machungwa: Mr Speaker, before my colleague raised a point of order, I was stating that the housing units for ZCCM were sold because the Government of the day wanted to empower the people. In the hon. Deputy Minister’s reply, he stated that it is up to ZCCM Investment Holding Limited to do their work and if they have not done that, the Ministry cannot do anything about it. Is it not incumbent upon the Government, who is the rallying force behind this programme to ensure that ZCCM Investment Holding Limited speeds up the programme so that the sitting tenants can have title deeds? If they have title deeds, they can use them as security to acquire finances for development and business.

I feel by not giving title deeds for a period of over ten years, sitting tenants are denied economical and financial benefits and even progress.

Mr Muteteka: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member of Parliament who was part of the transaction of 1997 when the Government of the day allowed ZCCM to sell the units to the sitting tenants.

Mr Speaker, in the Ministry of Lands, in the Department of Land and Deeds, when documents are logged, that is when officers work on them or facilitate the issuance of title deeds. However, we have also indicated that ZCCM Investment Holdings are responsible for carrying out a survey and lodge the documents to the Department of Land and Deeds. If the documents have not been received by my officers, it is very difficult for my Ministry to issue the title deeds because we have to make comparisons with the details which ZCCM Investment Holdings submits to our office. These are not mere documents; they are supposed to carry special security features. In that vein, I would like to urge the hon. Member of Parliament to push ZCCM Investment Holdings to facilitate the lodging of the documents to my Ministry and we are going to facilitate the issuance of the title deeds.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Sinyangwe (Matero): Mr Speaker, during the sale of houses, it was specifically stated that housing units should be sold to sitting tenants. At the time, teachers who were teaching mine children were subsequently offered accommodation and some of them had lived in the houses for as long as twenty years. Why is it that today they are being evicted because they are sitting tenants? Could the hon. Minister clarify that.

Mr Muteteka: Mr Speaker, identification of sitting tenants has been a programme in the Ministry of Mines and Minerals Development in consultation with ZCCM Investment Holdings. Therefore, this programme is not under my Ministry.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mushili (Ndola Central): Mr Speaker, as a follow up to a question raised by the hon. Member of Parliament for Bangweulu and a subsequent answer that came from the hon. Minister of Lands, ZCCM is an institution of the Government and the hon. Members of Parliament in this House are representatives of the communities and the people. We are the people who are representing the views … 

Mr Speaker: Order! Ask your question.

Mr Mushili: Sir, as representatives of the people, hon. Members of Parliament and ZCCM Investment Holding Limited being an institution of the Government, is it not proper the Ministry of Lands gets in touch with ZCCM Investment Holding Limited and find out why there has been a delay in the lodging of documents to the Ministry.


Mr Muteteka: Mr Speaker, it seems that some hon. Members of Parliament do not understand their role in the communities.


Mr Muteteka: Mr Speaker, as a true representative of the people, a hon. Member of Parliament is supposed to receive complaints from the affected tenants and the Member of Parliament should represent the people by bringing these issues to the Ministry of Lands. Then we will be able to respond accordingly.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, I would like to have a confirmation from the hon. Deputy Minister of Lands. We are told that title deeds have taken long as a result of ZCCM Investment Holding Limited not lodging the documents with the Ministry of Lands. In my constituency, I have over a thousand people who have visited the Ministry of Lands and have been told by ZCCM Investment Holding Limited that their documents have been taken to the Ministry of Lands and the Ministry of Lands has been refusing that they do not have the documents despite the records at ZCCM Investment Holding Limited showing …

Mr Speaker: Order! Ask your question.

Mr Kambwili: Sir, can the hon. Minister confirm whether they have lost the documents for the ex-miners who bought the houses or not.

Mr Muteteka: Mr Speaker, I am happy that he is confirming having received the complaints. Unfortunately, he has never been to my office. I am therefore, inviting him to come to office tomorrow and confirm what he is complaining about.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: Mr Speaker, the procedures of Parliament allow hon. Members of Parliament to raise questions in Parliament. Arising from the several answers offered by the hon. Minister of Lands, is he proposing that we should amend the Standing Order so that we raise questions in his Ministry and not on this Floor?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muteteka: Mr Speaker, I have correctly responded to the question which appeared in the Order Paper. With regard to the supplementary questions, I have responded going by my functions in the Ministry of Lands.


Mr Muteteka: Therefore, Sir, supplementary questions are not part of the Order Paper and this why I have extended my invitation to the hon. Members of Parliament to visit my Ministry for verifications.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order! Order!

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, the question of title deeds for ZCCM houses has been an on going. The previous hon. Minister of Lands promised that this would be solved. Could we know from the Government whether they have facing hurdles in the issuance of title deeds rather than continuous talking about ZCCM houses?

Mr Muteteka stood up.

Mr Speaker: Order! It appears the Acting Leader of Government Business wants to assist.

Mr Muteteka: Mr Speaker, the programme of issuing title deeds …

Mr Speaker: Order! Take your seat, hon. Deputy Minister.

Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, the issue of title deeds for those who bought houses from ZCCM as sitting tenants is being addressed by the Government. It will be recalled that in 2001, it became a matter of a Presidential Petition which has subsequently been disposed off. I would like to assure the House that the Ministry of Lands, in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance and National Planning is doing everything possible to ensure that title deeds for the 59,000 houses that were sold to sitting tenants of ZCCM are issued as quickly as possible.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Hachipuka (Mbabala): Mr Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity.

Mr Speaker, should this Government continue making assurances with no timeframe since 2001 and we should sit in this Parliament with those assurances for ever and ever, Amen.


Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, 12,000 title deeds have been prepared and are ready. In response to what has been raised by my hon. Friend, Hon. Hachipuka, I do not think that we are debating religious matters in the House.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.



253. Mr Mukanga asked the Minister of Home Affairs:

(a) how many vehicles were distributed to each police station or post country-wide from 2005 to 2006; and

(b) when the remaining police stations or posts would benefit from similar arrangements in future.

The Deputy Minister of Home Affairs (Mr Musosha): Mr Speaker, 294 vehicles were distributed to police stations and police posts throughout the country.

Mr Speaker, for purposes of clarity, allow me to read the entire list of the distribution of these vehicles.

Northern Division

 Station          Quantity
 Division Headquarters    4
 Chilubi Police Station    1
 Isoka Police      1
 Nakonde Police     2
 Mpika Police     1
 Chinsali Police     2
 Mpulungu police     1
 Mungwi Police     1
 Mporokoso Police    1
Total                 14

Luapula Division

 Station         Quantity
 Division Headquarters    5
 Chiengi Police     1
 Kaputa Police     1
 Kawambwa Police    2
 Samfya Police     1
 Milenge Police     1
 Nchelenge     1
 Total                  12

Eastern Division

 Station          Quantity
 Division Headquarters    6
 Lundazi Police     2
 Chama Police     1
 Chadiza Police     1
 Vubwi Police     1
 Katete Police     1
 Nyimba Police     1
 Petauke Police     1
 Mambwe Police     1
 Total                 15

Central Division

 Station          Quantity
 Division Headquarters    8
 Mumbwa Police     2
 Serenje Police     1
 Mboroma Police     1
 Mkushi Police     2
 Kapiri Mposhi Police    2
 Chisamba Police     2
 Chibombo Police     1
 Bwacha Police     1
 Keembe Police     1
 Kasanda Police     -
 Chowa      -
 Total       21

North-Western Division

 Station          Quantity
 Division Headquarters    8
 Kabompo Police     2
 Mufumbwe Police    2
 Mwinilunga Police    1
 Jimbe      1
 Kasempa Police     2
 Chavuma Police     1
 Zambezi Police     1
 Mutanda Police     1
 Total                  19

Western Division

 Station                  Quantity
 Division Headquarters    7
 Sesheke Police     2
 Lukulu Police     1
 Kaoma Police     2
 Senanga Police     1
 Shang’ombo Police    1
 Sikongo Police     1
 Kalabo Police     1
 Total                 16

Copperbelt Division

 Station            Quantity
 Division Headquarters                26
 Chililabombwe Police    1
 Chiwempala Police      1
 Chambeshi police     1
 Chifubu Police     1
 Kalulushi Police     1
 Wusakile police     1
 Lufwanyama     2
 Masala Police     1
 Kansenshi police     1
 Mpatamatu Police    1
 Roan Police     1
 Mpongwe police     1
 Kafulafuta Police     1
 Kamuchanga Police    1
 Kantanshi Police     1
 Kasumbalesa Police    1
 Mindolo Police     1
 Kitwe East Police     2
 Sakania Police     1
 Kitwe Central     2
 Mokambo police     1
 Masaiti Police     1
 Nkambo Police     1
 Nchanga      1
 Total                  53

Southern Division

 Station                          Quantity
 Division Headquarters    8
 Linda Police       1
 Libuyu Police     1
 Kalomo Police     1
 Zimba Police     1
 Choma Police     2
 Namwala Police     2
 Pemba Police     2
 Monze police     3
 Mazabuka Police     3
 Gwembe Police     1
 Maamba police     1
 Kazungula Police     1
 Neganega Police     1
Total                  28

Lusaka Division

 Station            Quantity
 Division Headquarters    27
 Rufunsa Police     1
 Chilenje Police     1
 Kanyama Police     1
 Chawama police     1
 Chilanga Police     2
 Chelstone Police     1
 Siavonga Police     1
 Ngwerere Police     1
 Chilundu Police     1
 Chalimbana Police    1
 Woodlands Police    1
 Roma Police     1
 Emasdale Police     -
 Matero Police     -
 Kabwata police     -
 Mwansa Kapwepwe Police   1
 Shibuyunji Police     1

 Total       42


 Station (Unit)    Quantity
 Mobile unit     11
 Police College       6
 Paramilitary     14
 Tazara        6
 State House     27
 Protective Unit       7
 Airport         4
 Total      75

Mr Speaker, the total number of vehicles distributed from 2005 to 2006 was 295.

The remaining stations and police posts will benefit from an on going arrangement of purchasing vehicles for the Police Service as funds are made available.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out what measures have been put in place by the Government to ensure that the vehicles that were supplied to various police stations have an adequate and constant supply of fuel.

Mr Musosha: Mr Speaker, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development allocated funds to the Ministry of Home Affairs which later sent them directly to Division Headquarters who ensured that the same funds were made available to police stations for the purchase of tyres, spares and other requirements.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Lubinda: Mr Speaker, given that Kabwata Constituency is the fastest growing constituency in Lusaka, and the that fact it has not been given any vehicle between 2005 and 2006, and at the moment has no transport whatsoever, could I ask the Hon. Minister if there is any consideration for the people of Kabwata so that one vehicle could be transfer from State House to Kabwata and State House remains with twenty-six and the many people of Kabwata will have only one.


Mr Speaker: Order!

Mr Musosha: Mr Speaker, it is not possible to transfer any vehicle from State House looking at the importance of that institution and the many functions it performs.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Musosha: As I have already stated, the remaining police stations and posts are going to be given vehicles in the on-going exercise as and when funds are available.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chota (Lubansenshi): Mr Speaker, could the Hon. Minister clarify on the new vehicle for the district which was later taken to Kasama. When he was reading his list, Luwingu was not mentioned. Did you give a vehicle to Luwingu, Hon. Minister?

Mr Musosha: Mr Speaker, I was privileged to visit Luwingu prisons and at the same time I was privileged to use a police TATA vehicle which was allocated to the station.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Scott (Lusaka Central): Mr Speaker, in view of the time it is taking to take all these vehicles round, could the hon. Minister tell us how many of the total number of vehicles are still runners and alternatively what we all expect on the average kilometre and working life of these vehicles could be. He can exclude the State House vehicles if he so wishes.

Mr Musosha: Mr Speaker, though it is a new question, to the best of my knowledge, the 294 vehicles distributed to various police stations and posts are in running and working order.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, last week in this House we were told that we had more than enough vehicles to combat crime in Zambia when one of the Members of Parliament asked a question with regard to transport for the Police. Surely, are 294 vehicles what you call enough vehicles? Further, is it in order to have twenty-one vehicles at State House and one vehicle in Roan where there are over 80,000 people?

Mr Musosha: Mr Speaker, I also do not see the reason State House has become an issue.

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Kambwili: But you can answer the question!

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, when these vehicles came from India, there was an elaborate statement from the Minister of Home Affairs on the security features of the vehicles to protect the engine as well as assuring that there would be comprehensive maintenance. I would like to know from the Ministry of Home Affairs what arrangements have been made to ensure that the vehicles are serviced? As the situation stands now, most of the vehicles have actually broken down like the one in Kalomo because of improper servicing.

Mr Musosha: Mr Speaker, as far as the ministry is concerned, backup spares came with the vehicles and these vehicles are meant to be repaired at each provincial headquarters where a group of mechanics are employed by the Ministry of Home of Affairs.

I thank you, Sir.

Mrs Sinyangwe: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the Hon. Minister why Headquarters has twenty-seven vehicles, because as far as I know, Headquarters is there just to make sure that operations are carried out, and yet the implementers at the police stations have one vehicle. Can he clarify that?

Mr Musosha: Mr Speaker, the Police Headquarters are the controlling office of all police activities in the country. As such, there is nothing wrong in them having that number of vehicles because that is where the command is.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Beene (Itezhi-Tezhi): Mr Speaker, I would like find out from the Hon. Minister specifically how much fuel is sent to outside stations such as Itezhi-Tezhi. As far as I am concerned, the community of Itezhi-Tezhi donate fuel for police officers to go to the outskirts to curb crime.

Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, the original question was not about fuel it was about vehicles and I think the Hon. Minister has adequately answered that question.

I thank you, Sir.

Mrs Musokotwane (Katombola): Mr Speaker, could I find out when the Ministry will consider giving us a second vehicle in Katombola Constituency since Kazungula District is vast, hence one vehicle is not enough for the officers to run from the border to Nyawa whenever there is a crisis.

Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, Katombola has already been allocated one vehicle. We appreciate that it is not adequate, but there is no Government department which has enough vehicles in this country. As and when funds become available more vehicles will be bought to ensure that the needs of the various police stations are taken care of.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mtonga (Kanyama): Mr Speaker, I am grateful to the Hon. Minister for at least giving some vehicles to the hard pressed police officers. Has the ministry considered putting in place a rationalisation policy on motor vehicles? These vehicles will not last long unless there is a rationalised point where you have a standard vehicle for the police which is either a Land Rover or a Land Cruiser. Have you any policy to standardise vehicles for the Police Force instead of depending on the good will of concerned countries.

Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, that option has been discussed by the Police and it has been considered as one of the options that are available.

I am sure that the hon. Member for Kanyama will recall that when he was Inspector-General of Police, he tried very hard to put this particular policy in place, but unfortunately it was a heroic failure.


Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, efforts will be made to continue looking into standardisation so that in addition to depending on the goodwill of our co-operating partners, we can also use resources of our own to ensure that we begin a programme of standardisation.

I thank you, sir.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, I would like to know from the hon. Minister whether the two hundred and ninety-four vehicles are comprehensively insured or are under third party insurance to safe-guard the travelling public, including pedestrians. At the expense of belabouring the insurance points, I would like to know who the nominated insurer is for these vehicles.


Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, the original question was not about insurance, it was about the number of motor vehicles which have been allocated to police stations and posts province by province and I am surprised that the hon. Member for Mazabuka should now begin bringing in extraneous issues which are totally unrelated to the original question.

I thank you, Sir.





 Dr Chishimba (Kasama Central): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that this House urges the Government to urgently respond to the HIV/AIDS pandemic in the country by ensuring that all the estimated 200,000 Zambians living with HIV/AIDS have access to anti-retroviral therapy and other alternative remedies.

Mr Speaker: Is the Motion seconded?

Ms Masiye (Mufulira): I second the Motion, Sir.

Dr Chishimba: Mr Speaker, I forward my eternal thanks for allowing this Motion to be discussed on the Floor of this august House.

Mr Speaker, I have structured my debate as follows. I will begin by giving a brief historical background to the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Zambia. After that, I will also attempt to look at the initial Government responses to the epidemic and also the current status of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Zambia. I will also look at the impact of the HIV/AIDS pandemic as well as to the current responses to the crisis which will include voluntary counselling and testing as well as the anti retroviral therapy programme currently in the country, the major challenges as well as suggestions for the way forward in order to accelerate the mechanisms to respond to the epidemic effectively.

Mr Speaker, when I say effectively, I am referring to the need to have an emergency kind of response to do more than we are currently responding to the epidemic.

Sir, the advent of the HIV/AIDS around 1984 is the greatest development challenge facing the Zambian society today.

Mr Speaker, the epidemic threatens to reverse the social and economic achievements scored by Zambia since Independence. As I said, when the first HIV/AIDS case was detected in the early 1980s, the responses to the problem were not in a manner that we can classify as an emergency style of response. However, this is understandable because that was when the epidemic appeared on the Zambian public health scene.

Mr Speaker, the usual responses by the Government included in 1986, the establishment of the National Aids Surveillance Committee and inter sectorial AIDS health education committee to co-ordinate all the HIV/AIDS programmes. Several other programmes followed such as the first Medium Term Plan and the Zambian National Prevention and Control Programme, a programme which was restructured in 1992 and organised the national HIV/AIDS and STI Tuberculosis and Leprosy Control Programme.

What is the current status of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Zambia? I am talking about the demological reality. Firstly, Zambia’s population now stands at about 11.2 million. The national HIV prevalence rate; that is in the age group of fifteen to forty-nine is 16 per cent, but of course, the range is from 13.5 per cent to 20 per cent. This means that 1.2 million Zambians are currently living with HIV. The geographical and gender pattern of HIV prevalence has continued unabated over the years. The incidence of HIV/AIDS is still more pronounced in the urban areas than in rural areas. In urban areas, we have 23 per cent, while in the rural areas we have about 11 per cent.

In fact, Mr Speaker, as opposed to the current estimate that about 200,000 people are living with HIV/AIDS, we have actually about 300,000 of the 1.2 million people who are estimated to be in need of ARVS.

Mr Speaker, the major mode of transmission as you are all aware is heterosexual, meaning that it is through sexual intercourse and over 90 per cent in children is through mother to child transmission. There are about one 130,000 HIV infected children countrywide. So this is a brief epidemiological picture of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Zambia. Now what are some of the impacts of the epidemic?

Mr Speaker, I will begin by looking at the impact of the pandemic and how it has impacted on our economy. I must state here that by 2010, if we do not introduce programmes that will reverse the course of the epidemic, the per capita GDP in Zambia, since it is one of the hardest hit countries, will drop by 8 per cent and 20 per cent by 2020. This means that HIV/AIDS has already began to undo what we have so far done in all spheres of economic activities. Per capita consumption may also fall even further. Per capita annual growth in half of the countries of Sub-Saharan Africa of which Zambia is included is falling by 0.5 per cent to 1.2 per cent as a direct result of HIV/AIDS.

Mr Speaker, here I have just given the impact of the pandemic on the economy generally, but HIV/AIDS has also impacted on the public sector labour force. I must state that the national labour force, taking into account the influence of HIV/AIDS currently, that is of course, in 2005 stands at the estimated 3,906,000 persons employed in all sectors of the economy. Without the influence of HIV/AIDS, it is estimated that the labour force would have comprised about 3,928,000 persons suggesting a labour force loss due to HIV/AIDS of some 22,000 persons in 2005 alone. This means that the size of the labour force will be almost 1.4 per cent smaller by 2010 than it would have been without HIV/AIDS. Zambia’s total labour force would continue to grow steadily over the short to medium-term, both with and without HIV/AIDS. It is estimated that the labour force would increase from an estimated 2.6 persons in 1990 to 4.4 million persons in 2010. This represents an average labour force growth rate of about 2 per cent per annum over the time period in question. I must state that even though the labour force will continue to grow, the impact of HIV/AIDS will still continue to be felt and of course this is staggering.

Today, Zambia has over 800,000 orphans and vulnerable children (OVCs). In fact, these are orphans mostly due to HIV/AIDS and it is projected that the number is likely to increase in the next five years to more than 1.3 million children. The number of street children is not known even though the Government states that it is about 13,000 as opposed to 75,000 in 1995.

Now, what does this mean to children? Of course, the death of a parent means that children are going to be shunted out of the main stream education system. As you are aware, Mr Speaker, we have seen the mushrooming of community schools where quality education is not guaranteed. That indeed, represents an emergency and it is a crisis because it relates to children who constitute the future of our country.

Mr Speaker, what are some of the current responses to the crisis? Firstly, I will give a general prospective then I will go to declarations as well as responses which are specific to response to the provision of ART to the people.

Prevention campaigns using the abstinence or being faithful and condom use strategy are everywhere in the country. With regard to the promotion of HIV/AIDS programmes, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) has set the pace for this, and of course, there also efforts towards HIV/AIDS mainstreaming and home based care mainly spearheaded by the church that is faith based organisations.

With regard to community schools for OVCs, there other options to increase children’s access to education. Also, there are over 400 organisations with programmes that work towards increasing income to vulnerable households. Here, I must say that this is a direct response to the non arguable facts that most households are now grandparent headed or child headed. Then ART is another response. Other than this, the Government of the Republic of Zambia has also committed itself to quite a number of declarations whose results in terms of bearing the desired impact still leave quite a lot to be desired.

The first declaration to which Zambia is signatory is the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on HIV/AIDS (UNGASS) international commitment on HIV/AIDS. After twenty years of AIDS, the United Nations called for UNGASS and about 189 countries attended the session in New York. The UNGASS HIV/AIDS held between 22nd and 27th June, 2001 saw a declaration from heads of States and Governments to address HIV/AIDS the following taking into account the diverse situations and circumstances in different regions and countries throughout the world.

(a) provision of leadership;

(b) prevention;

(c) care, support and treatment;

(d) HIV/AIDS and human rights;

(e) reducing vulnerability;

(f) children orphaned, but have  HIV/AIDS and need to be cared for;

(g) alleviating social and economic impacts of the pandemic;

(h) research and development;

(i) HIV/AIDS in conflict and disaster affected regions;

(j) Resources; this has to do with the increase in resource allocation to the health sector in order to face the challenges caused by the HIV/AIDS pandemic;

(k) follow up; this is maintaining the momentum and monitoring progress and  these are essential.

Mr Speaker, as I said, Zambia is signatory to the UNGASS declaration. The extent to which this a very declaration has been popularised again, as I said, lives a lot to be desired. At continental level, we also have some of declarations such as the Dakar Declaration by African heads of State and Governments. There is also the Abuja Declaration by African heads of State and Governments. These are some of the declarations by African leaders as well as the International Community in response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

With regard to Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT) and Anti-Retroviral Therapy Treatment in Zambia, I will start by giving a picture on the number of sites which are currently operating in Zambia. I must state that there are now over 600 VCT centres and 203 ART sites across the country. This was initially low, but has been accelerating exponentially. June 30th is national VCT day, but before I come to this, let me state that the VCT centres are distributed province by province as follows:

Province  VCT  ART
Lusaka   140  25
Copperbelt  153  59
Central    61  16
Eastern   35  17
Southern  65  25
Northern  72  18
Luapula   40  19
Western  5 6  13
North-Western  29  11

Mr Speaker, here again as you can see the distribution of these facilities is inadequate. Consequently, most people in rural areas in this particular case are subjected to covering long distances to access life prolonging medications. The other measure which the Government has taken and which I have already mentioned is to make June 30th a national VCT day. Over 10,000 people were tested last year as a result of this initiative. I think this is indeed the right direction.

On expanding treatment, care and support, Mr Speaker, I must say treatment in spectrum includes ARVs as I have said and drugs for treatment of optimistic infections. In 2002, the Zambian Government took a policy decision to make ART widely available in public health facilities.

Zambia was part of the global community that signed the WHO/UNAIDS 3 by 5 Initiative. 3 by 5 means, putting 3,000,000 people by the end of the year 2005. So, Zambia committed herself in putting 100,000 people living with HIV/AIDS and those in need of ARVs by the end of the year 2005. As you can see, this indeed, was quite an ambitious figure and people living with HIV/AIDS expected to benefit from this programme and this target would be met by the end of 2005.

Unfortunately, by the end of 2005, only 51,764 patients were on ARVs. That represents 51.7 per cent of the 3 by 5 target. Mr Speaker, let me make it known that the 3 by 5 treatment plan was an initiative of WHO/UNAIDS. Currently, there are 75,000 people on ARVs. Now, the question is, for how long are the African leaders or heads of State and Governments going to continue waiting for the international community to impose programmes on them even when this pandemic is affecting their own people?  We expect such initiatives to come from our African Leaders or African state managers and rather than wait for the international community to prescribe measures to contain this deadly epidemic. I must state that as a result of the 3 by 5 treatment plan, the Government of the Republic of Zambia made a policy decision to provide free antiretroviral drugs. As treatment is being scaled up, drug resistance in some clients is expected to show and hence a pharmacovigilance surveillance system is being developed according to the records, but again, as to when this will finally be put in place, is a question that needs to be answered.

At the end of 2005, about 50,000 people leaving with HIV/AIDS were put antiretroviral drugs. Currently, we have 75,000. So, we can see that we are still not even able to meet the 3 by 5 target. This means that only 25 per cent of the 300,000 people that need antiretroviral drugs are currently receiving them. Of the 130,000 children with HIV infection, a meagre10,000 is on treatment.

Now, what are the projections for scaling up? According to the Government, in order to reach universal access to Anti-Retroviral Therapy (ART), the following are yearly projections:

(a) By the end of 2007  - 90,000

(b) By the end of 2008  - 130,000

(c) By the end of 2009  - 170,000

(d) By the end of 2010  - 210,000

Surely, Sir, how can we move at this kind of slow pace because these projections mean that out of the 300,000 people as at 2006 who need antiretroviral drugs, about 90,000 will not receive them? We must also realise that there will also be a progression from HIV to AIDS among the 1.2 million people who are living with HIV/AIDS, especially given the poverty levels in the country. Most of our people are not able to access foodstuffs that are rich in micronutrients to keep them healthy to slow the progression from HIV to AIDS

What are some of the factors that are affecting levels of utilisation of Voluntary Counseling and Testing and Anti-Retroviral Therapy centres?

(a) It is the shortage of human resource. As we scale up to health centre level, there is a need for the Ministry of Health to ensure that we have appropriate health staff because the current situation is that the staff are not trained to handle antiretroviral drugs.

(b) The other factor is that of a demotivated and depleted workforce. We have seen the brain drain in our country and its effects.

(c) Stigma and discrimination is still prevalent in some communities.

(d) Lack of early infant diagnostics for children less than 18 months of age, coupled with health workers who lack paediatric training in Anti-Retroviral Therapy.

(e) Coverage is over 80 per cent, but accessibility is still a challenge in taking the services to the community. As said, coverage is one factor, but accessing these services is determined by quite a number of factors or it is either the availability of personnel as well as the steady supply of antiretroviral drugs.

(f) Information is erratic on the availability of antiretroviral drugs and of course, information on antiretroviral drugs includes treatment literacy. People need to know, for instance the side effects of taking antiretroviral drugs and what they need to do when they detect some of the side effects so that remedial action is taken at the early stage. There is uncertainty about supply.

Mr Speaker, the public health systems should also be supported by community structures for effective delivery of Anti-Retroviral Drugs. This is particularly cardinal as scaling up takes root.

With regard to links with counseling and testing centres, as you heard in my earlier remarks, the number of Voluntary Counseling and Testing Centres is more than the number ART Centres. So, as the number of Voluntary Counseling and Treatment Centres increase, there is a need to ensure that the Anti-Retroviral Therapy Centres increase as well and ensure that there are linkages between Voluntary Counseling and Testing Centres and Anti-Retroviral Therapy Centres. This is because we will end up having a situation where some of the organisations, they may be private or Non-Governmental Organisations may not have the capacity to adequately provide quality counseling, and yet they do not refer them to …

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1530 hours.

Dr Chishimba: Mr Speaker, before business was suspended I was talking about links with counseling and testing centres. I will now talk about some of the alternative remedies that the Government has attempted to introduce. In other words, what the Government is trying to do to introduce alternative remedies or therapies in response to HIV/AIDS treatment.

Sir, I must begin by stating that nutritional care and support for people living with HIV/AIDS is an integral part of the Home Based Care Programme. However, it remains a challenge, as it requires a lot of resources.

So far, an assessment of three traditional herbs have been undertaken to ascertain their efficacy as a cure for HIV and AIDS. When I say for HIV, I am talking about the treatment to enhance longevity. These are Mayeyanin, Mailacin and the Sondashi. Their results are not yet known to the public nor do we know the reason these are being withheld.

What are some of the major challenges that the health sector faces in response to the HIV/AIDS Pandemic? While our health care needs have increased with the epidemic of HIV/AIDS and other health issues, the number of health care workers has decreased and is now supporting developed countries and the private health sector in our own country. Despite the numerous national, regional and international commitments on the provision of life saving medicines to people living with HIV, there is till unacceptably a large gap between demand and supply. We have to do more to save the lives of people who need antiretroviral drugs.

There is a need for us to commit ourselves however, in committing ourselves, what does the Government need to do in this accelerated mechanism to respond to HIV/AIDS? I propose the following:

(a) the allocation from the Treasury to the Public Health Sector should be increased to meet the international commitment of at least 15 per cent of the national expenditure.

(b) there is a need to urgently intensify treatment of opportunistic infections such as tuberculosis using the Directly Observed Treatment Short course (DOTS). Of course, in this particular case, community centres of excellence need to be identified because the Government alone cannot implement the DOTS system. In fact, in line with this, there is a need to ensure that the second line of tuberculosis treatment or regimens are procured. I say so because in case of resistance or relapses, streptomycin is the only available drug which is given, but there are cases of resistance. I am talking about tuberculosis in this particular way because it is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality.

(c) there is a need to accelerate the scaling up of ART which will include children living with HIV/AIDS, prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV and free medicines for the treatment of all opportunistic infections should be provided;

(d) ensure adequate supply of vitamins, nutritional herbs and high protein foods to all public health facilities;

(e) adequately support and build the capacity of the National Institute for Scientific and Industrial Research to conduct research into alternative remedies and, of course, this includes other research centres;

(f) develop an effective monitoring system to ensure that HIV/AIDS funding is benefiting people living with HIV/AIDS, women and children. To do this, people living with HIV/AIDS, youths, women and children through their mother support organisations, should be involved in monitoring the utilisation of funds. Every region, in this particular case, needs to have a watchdog. The legal framework to support this needs to be developed. I say so because we have seen a trend where people who need the support from the funding do not actually receive it. We have seen providers getting richer at the end of the day at the expense of people whose lives need to be saved;

(g) accelerate the implementation of an integrated approach to HIV/AIDS due to the link that exists between HIV/AIDS and poverty, the relationship where one exacerbates the other. This entails the mainstreaming HIV/AIDS into poverty reduction strategies from a prevention perspective and mainstreaming HIV/AIDS into poverty reduction strategies from an impact perspective. All we are saying is that there is a need for all Government ministries to be more proactive in as far as responding to HIV/AIDS is concerned, that is, internally protecting the labour force in the public sector as well as responding to HIV/AIDS externally. Here, we look at the co-programmes that the different ministries have. For example, if the Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives is implementing the Fertiliser Support Programme, the question should be how best the ministry can ensure that vulnerable households headed by children whose parents have been lost to HIV/AIDS access that Fertiliser Support Programme. If it is the Ministry of Energy and Water Development, how can they increase people’s accessibility? I am talking about organisations that are providing, for instance, electricity so that they are able to provide parental care 24 hours. These are the questions we need to ask ourselves as leaders;

(h) create the Zambia Health Information Service to co-ordinate and ensure mass HIV/AIDS, ART and VCT awareness campaigns. This agency should be equipped with video vans to run educational HIV/AIDS/TB video documentaries based on best practices. Let this organisation or indeed the Ministry of Health work with other organisations such as non-governmental organisations, churches and the private sector in information dissemination. This kind of information dissemination will increase people’s access to information and make informed decisions to go for testing let alone access the remedies that are available;

(i) recruitment of all trained health workers should not be a gradual process. Let there be a recruitment of all health workers as part of the accelerated mechanism to respond to the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Indeed, we cannot allow this situation to continue when we know people out there are about to die and they will die if we do not act;

(j) to advocate for cheaper and more effective HIV diagnostics accessible to our Government and, of course, throughout the African continent. African governments should work closely with other governments which have made an impact or demonstrated practical practices like Uganda;

(k) the registration processes should include an emergency registration of drugs like HIV/AIDS medicines particularly generic medicines to ensure that they are quickly made available to those who need them. This, of course, should include alternative remedies;

(l) encourage the Government to increase their tax collection capacity to ensure that individuals and private companies, including multi-national corporations do not avoid paying their taxes which should be contribute to public social delivery expenditures, such as, treatment of HIV/AIDS; and

(m) encourage our regulatory bodies and the Government to incorporate and monitor the use of traditional and complementary medicines in HIV/AIDS treatment, but emphasise the importance of proven safety, efficacy and quality of traditional and complementary medicines.

In conclusion, I indeed urge our Government to ensure that there is some kind of Pan-African solidarity to ensure that we respond to the epidemic in an emergency style of response and not wait for the international community to prescribe to us what we should do.

Mr Speaker, I beg to move.{mospagebreak}

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

Ms Masiye: Now, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker, I am humbled for the opportunity accorded to me to second the Motion moved by Hon. Chishimba to urge the Government to urgently respond to the HIV/AIDS pandemic in an emergency style as opposed to current arrangements where the pandemic is treated just like any other ordinary disease. Whilst it may be like any other ordinary disease, when we look at it in terms of alleviating stigma, its prevalence rate is adversely affecting households and the nation at large.

In a predominantly young population like Zambia, many people are sexually active and this means that the entire population faces the risk of being infected with the HIV virus which causes AIDS. The hundreds of thousands of our people who die year in and year out indicate that indeed, Zambia faces a crisis which calls for action which must be more accelerated in order to save lives and consequently preserve the productive workforce in the nation’s economy and this cannot be over emphasised. The young and most productive are dying, leaving most households impoverished, especially those households which are either grand-child or grand-parent headed.

Mr Speaker, the pace at which HIV/AIDS is moving means that more and more households will continue to face food and income insecurity as a direct effect of HIV/AIDS. The declaration of HIVAIDS as a national disaster must practically be seen in the effectiveness of the national responses which should cover every corner of Zambia. If we cover every corner of Zambia, it means reaching out to all those who are currently infected and all those that face the risk of infection. We expect the Government to urgently scale up anti-retroviral treatment access to all the people of Zambia that are currently living with HIV/AIDS and are in critical need of ARVs. We do not expect excuses for the slow pace currently seen in responding to the deadly pandemic. In areas where immediate commencement of ART is not possible due to non-availability of the required equipment and trained personnel to manage ART, the Government must offer alternative remedies as proposed by the mover of this Motion. This should, indeed, include the following:

(a) provision of food supplements that are rich in protein and energy;

(b) provision of immune boosters such as selenium among other alternatives that do not require complicated processes to administer;

(c) Embracing an approach where all sectors of our country respond to the pandemic as an emergency. In this regard, embracing means action with adequate support.

Mr Speaker, lessons can be learnt from Uganda whose emergency responses helped to reverse the pandemic and today, Uganda is one of the case studies not only in Africa, but the world as a whole.

Let us stop talking and begin to act in an accelerated manner. Let us address the following problems that are acknowledged by participating ART centres in Zambia.

(a) the high patient assessment cost;

(b) the exemption criteria is not rigorously applied to allow more needy and vulnerable patients access treatment;

(c) delays in the supply of ARV Fixed Dose Combination (FDC) first Line regimens;

(d) stigma around the HIV/AIDS remains a barrier compounded by the lack of privacy and confidentiality in the public sector;

(e) relevant tests are not consistently in place for effective monitoring;

(f) health staff are not readily available let alone willing to counsel patients and families on adherence and managing side effects as well as HIV prevention and healthy living. By health staff, I am not referring to pre-test counselors, but otherwise;

(g) within institutions, staff shortages are another serious barrier for expanding ART, a problem throughout the health system;

(h) the main challenge in paediatric care is obtaining formulations in syrup form, particularly of fixed dose combinations; and

(i) the risk of ARV drug resistance emerging remains a serious issue that requires research.

From the above problems associated with ART accessibility, it can be deduced that there is a need for serious action to remove barriers and increase people’s access to life saving drugs and alternative remedies where ART cannot immediately be administered.

Mr Speaker, I beg to submit.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Katema (Chingola): Mr Speaker, this is a very important problem that needs to be addressed.

Mr Speaker, I would propose to the Ministry of Health to look back on their experience in how they managed the Universal Child Immunisation (UCI). This is a programme where all the children have been immunised in Zambia and the results are showing now. For example, measles is almost cleared in Zambia. This is a pat on the back of the Ministry of Health. Therefore, I would like the Ministry of Health to adopt the same policy that they used in the Universal Child Immunisation to adopt the ART programme.

Mr Speaker, I would also like the Ministry of Health to establish a mobile ART clinic, meaning vehicles moving to all the outreach areas where they can screen the HIV patients, test them and even commence ART treatment. That way, we may be able to reach the target of 200,000 people.

Mr Speaker, in Chingola, recently, research was conducted and the results showed that one third of the people that are on ART have dropped out. The reason cited was the long distances to the centres that are providing ART. Therefore, if the Government could come up with a policy like they did with UCI to have every district station, there should be a vehicle stationed there specifically for ART to take the doctor, laboratory technician, nurses and pharmacist to every ART centre, then we will reach everybody who requires ART. This has worked with UCI and I do not see why it cannot work with ART because the Government had a policy that every worker who participates in UCI gets an allowance.

As for ART, which is more taxing than the UCI programme, no allowance is given. It is considered any other job, but it is more taxing and tedious. If a policy is made to have every district provided with a mobile ART vehicle and funds set aside for remuneration in the form of lunch allowance to the people who are reaching out to the clients in the peri urban and rural areas, we will make a head way.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Dr Scott (Lusaka Central): Mr Speaker, I think I can say without any fear of contradiction that the majority of the hon. Members present in this House, as I speak, have not been tested for HIV.

In fact, it would be surprising from what we know of the other population generally in this country, if 20 per cent have been tested. Of course, it is not just politicians that have this blind spot. Among the high risk populations that is not generally tested are doctors themselves.

I know of doctors who were close friends of mine with a lot of money who have died of HIV/AIDS without ever having tested themselves and diagnosed the reasons for their impending deaths.

Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister would be advised to look at the problem of testing because, clearly, minus a high percentage hit on testing, you are not going to get a high percentage hit on Anti Retroviral Therapy of any description.

Obviously, many of us may be HIV positive, but currently, symptom free in which case, our CD4 counts …


Dr Scott: … it is not a joke Sir. I have been operation for five years ago in which I was given a 100 litres of other people’s blood and I could easily be positive. However, the Hon. Minister or her assistant should look at the reasons the testing rates are so low in this country.

Mr Mtonga: Zoona!

Dr Scott: I have worked in this area for more than twenty years. I was one of the founders of the Family Health Trust which is one of the first NGOs. I have looked at this disease quite closely for a long time, of course, as an amateur because I am not a medical doctor.

Mr Speaker, there are problems that come up. I do not want to bore the House with too many anecdotes, but the kind of problems that arise are that you have cases of doctors who are very reluctant to test the patient in case they test HIV positive. There are many reasons for this. Firstly, the doctor, himself or herself, may be in denial. They may suspect or be aware that they are at high risk and there is a likelihood of them being HIV positive. They do not wish to confront another case of this nature.

Sir, there are many social problems. Of course, humility comes into being. There are also problems of confidentiality. Many doctors know that they cannot test somebody, whether at a private or Government clinic, without the information about the results leaking out.

I would be prepared to bet that if I went anywhere in this town and had a test, even Mr Sata would know the results before tomorrow morning although he is on the other side of the planet. My wife would certainly know by tomorrow, lunch time.

I think confidentiality is another aspect which discourages us from testing and this creates a problem. It causes us to draw a blank with regard to this whole issue. It is easy to ignore because it is not critical. It does not cause immediate pain. It is not like a broken leg or an acute disease such as malaria that needs urgent treatment. Most of the time, it can be denied and avoided. The truth can be avoided. There are a whole lot of whole story that come from VCT centres of people who have been affected. I will give just one example out of many.

A friend of mine whose house was burgled and was raped went correctly, to a donor funded VCT centre in the middle of Lusaka three months later to confirm whether or not she had been infected in the course of this horror. This is VCT centre with donor-trained VCT Zambian staff and the nurses asked her why she went to the VCT centre. They said, ‘Tell us why you think you are HIV positive or we will not test you.’ This is the confidentiality that we have in some of these VCT centres.

Furthermore, having made her sit there while they went to test the sample of her blood, they came back and said, ‘I wonder what you would say if I told you that on this piece of paper is written HIV positive? How would you react to that?’ They teased her for some minutes before it transpired that she was negative and very luckily relieved of it.

Mr Speaker, this is the first barrier that we are facing in confronting this disease. If we just allow ourselves to say we will not look at it as our own case or in the case of our patients, we will ignore it, walk our way round it, but meanwhile, we will end up dying of it. I think I cannot urge the hon. Minister strongly enough or support this motion strongly enough for a more aggressive approach to this disease; a braver one, a more honest one and a more aggressive one.

Sir, I am not suggesting that people should be compulsorily tested because that would distort the entire basis of the doctor-client relationship. We may have people not going to clinics, avoiding any further contact with the medical fraternity. However, I think a more aggressive approach would be this, ‘unless you give me very good reasons why I should not test you, you should be tested’. Actually, even the doctors themselves should be tested as part of their conditions of working as doctors. How do you counsel somebody when you are afraid to even confront your own fears?


Dr Scott: You cannot even confront the disease in you or the possibility of disease in you, and yet you are supposed to be advising somebody in a fatherly way or in a bedside manner and everything else. I think this is one of the problems that we have.

Mr Speaker, we have other problems like the problem alluded to yesterday by the hon. Member for Chipangali, Hon. V. Mwale, of different ideologies - spending money in Zambia and fighting over policy issues such as condoms. How is a villager, a poor man in Bauleni, the poor girl of fifteen, sixteen or seventeen years going to take two messages? One message from people saying the condom is the work of Satan and the other saying the condom is the practical way of preventing HIV. It is all right for those of us who consider ourselves sophisticated although we are not sophisticated enough to go and get tested. At least, we think we can make a practical decision or a principled decision. Some things needs to be done to avoid this PEPFA versus Global Fund warring which is going on. Much as I respect religion, I think it is not useful to have so much ideological talk in an area which is a matter of saving our own children from early and very unpleasant death. So, I think that is another issue.

Mr Speaker, another issue yet is the ‘fat-AIDS’ syndrome. Since AIDS came to Zambia, it has made many people thin and others fat. The people who have grown fat on AIDS are those attending workshops on AIDS day in and day out. They are constructing visions and mission statements and so on and so forth, picking up allowances from the AIDS money and going back the next day; flying to international conferences to listen to more of what they already know. We know them. We know enough about this disease, enough about the drugs, enough about its life cycle and its history. We all know that, but we need to make the system work and not do the normal Zambian thing of saying, ‘Let’s go and have a workshop instead,’ because it enables us avoid actual work.

Mr Speaker, I know I get a little perturbed sometimes when I speak, in which case I apologise, but for the amount of money that has been spent on this disease, we have achieved remarkably little. I think the hon. Minister will also have the problem of straightening out institutional weaknesses in this structure here. I think, as the mover of this Motion said, it is foreigners who are doing the work here for us very largely. I was with some faith-based organisations, talking to them about AIDS, at one stage when that Tsunami in the Far East hit and people were almost leaving for the airport with their suitcases on the same day. The Tsunami is much more exciting than AIDS in Africa. So, all these volunteers, all these professionals - ‘do-gooders’ - were running to the airport to get on the plane to Indonesia to attend to the Tsunami victims. It is very romantic and it looks good on your curriculum vitae. Meanwhile, we, ourselves, have tended to take the back seat and not really be proactive with our own ethics, our own codes of conduct. Honestly, the hon. Minister, Sir, should round up all our doctors and nurses and take them back to school and raise their game. Where is the level of the Zambian professionalism, private and public to tackle this shameful disease? It is a disease of any inaction and denial. We should stop denying it and we should act accordingly.

Mr Speaker, I strongly support this Motion.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

The Minister of Science, Technology and Vocational Training (Dr Chituwo): Mr Speaker, this is a very important Motion. Having been brought to the House, I hope I will demonstrate that there has been serious Government commitment to combating HIV/AIDS and opportunistic infections.

Notwithstanding what I have said, the hon. Minister of Health will be able to complete the debate. The mover of the Motion is really asking or knocking at an open door.

Zambia is well known for its efforts in the fight against HIV/AIDS. As has been stated, the first case was diagnosed in 1984 or 1985. It is a new disease.  World over, there has been not only denial at personal level as the hon. Member of Parliament for Lusaka Central has said, but also at institutional and national levels. We thought that this disease was for the Americans, but it was not long before we started seeing the symptoms and the effects of HIV/AIDS infection.

Mr Speaker, to show what this Government has done, historically and as been stated, there was a National Surveillance Team. After that, there was the National First Plan put in place, but we saw that we would not succeed without the legal framework. We then had the National Aids Council put in place. In fact, this House passed an Act of Parliament to this effect. It is not true that the donors insisted, but this is a matter of asking us what we want. True enough in the past there were prescriptions from New York and Washington, but just to remind the hon. Member of Parliament for Lusaka Central, now in a disease of this nature, we are all interested; the developed and developing countries as well.

Sir, we had to have a legal framework. It is very well known that not much medical information was known about this disease. The role of the doctors and nurses is never to do harm than good. We had the introduction of ART, which involved toxic drugs. Zambia took a cautious step by establishing two centres. One was at the University Teaching Hospital and the other at Ndola Central Hospital.

Mr Speaker, we were able to learn new techniques and acquire new knowledge so that our patients’ welfare was taken care of. We had to quickly scale up not only in terms of detection, but also treatment. It is true that perhaps we could have moved faster, but there are constraints, one of which is human resource. The other is the fact that at the time we introduced Voluntary Counseling and Testing, treatment was not widely available. The question was, “if you test me, what next?” Clearly, the two were linked and ART became available. Considering that to administer Anti-Retroviral Therapy, you need a vehicle, infrastructure such as buildings, equipment and human resource in place. This is an area where you cannot do things overnight. From what has been stated, one can see the strides we have made to have a CD 4 Counting Machine in every district. If I may share with the House that for six months, for a new machine that comes, it costs US$10,000 with six months of reagents that go with that machine. Surely, if you are making this kind of diagnostic facility available to every district in our country, it is something that we should be proud of and appreciate. Clearly, there is more to be done. The bigger health centres have the CD4 Count facilities. We yet have to reach every corner of Zambia. The constraint arises from the fact that even for basic health services, we are still planning ahead. We heard yesterday that this year, forty health posts are to be built. This is the reclusion of the fact that we need to provide these to all Zambian citizens.

Sir, another constraint is that of the human resource. Admittedly so, the issue of stigma is real. I need not emphasise the fact that stigma is perhaps much more among the enlightened. This is the issue that we have to challenge ourselves with. How many of us in this House have taken an HIV/Aids test, but it is still a contradiction to medical ethics. Who is supposed to know our status? Clearly my spouse is supposed to know my status, but the first step really is for the leadership to take the first step.

The other constraint we talked about was information. There is a communication strategy in the National Aids Council to see how best we can reach our people with the information on which they can make decisions. Prevention is key and this Government has taken the prevention of mother to child transmission seriously. This is where we can protect our children from contracting HIV/AIDS from their mothers. This started as a pilot programme, but is spreading to wherever there are antenatal clinics so that we can reach as many mothers as possible.

In the last session, I talked about the issue of risk factors. I did mention in this House that alcohol is a major risk factor. Unless there is serious debate and decision on the use of alcohol, I am afraid we have a big problem. When one takes alcohol, it reduces judgment. One becomes much more adventurous and this relates to most young people. The issue of ART should be taken in the context of other social factors that increase the risk.

Mr Speaker, with regard to the complications arising from ARVs, yes, they are there. This is why again this Government in order to reach our people, entered into partnership with Netherlands so that with the Retention Scheme, we can have a Medical Office at each district hospital. Three years ago, we had less than ten and now, nearly every district has more than a doctor under this Retention Scheme. Clearly, the incentives have to be extended to other health workers.

Sir, we are not relying entirely on ARVs. The National Institute of Scientific and Industrial Research, through the Ministry of Science, Technology and Vocational Training is collaborating with the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research in South Africa as part of the NEPAD initiative. We are researching into alternative remedies. For the information of the House, the Sondashi formulation is one of those herbs that we are collaborating in. Soon, there will be this memorandum of understanding. In order to speed up the process of siding alternative remedy, no single country will have all the resources or the expertise and hence the importance of collaboration.

Mr Speaker, one will see therefore, that this Government need not be urged to do more. The issue of three by five initiative was arrived at by WHO by consulting other member states. It is our initiative and WHO does not stand on its one. Its strength relies in its membership and Zambia is a member. The figure of one hundred thousand might appear it has been ambitious but as far as I know, reaching three million people by 2005, no single country reached their respective targets. That should not be an area for us to worry. What it has done is to bring to the show the need for advocacy to raise resources that we have a pandemic, which we all at family, community, national and international level must combat. This has been achieved through the 3 by 5 initiative.

Therefore, to have less than 2,000 patients on ART is in itself a tremendous achievement. Clearly, to get the figures as it has been stated of 200,000 people on treatment requires more ARVS, human resource, equipment, infrastructure, and training of people.

Lastly, in order to make progress, every one of us has to be involved. We cannot hope to succeed if we leave this to the Ministry of Health alone. This is why we have engaged the District AIDS Task Forces that are in our constituencies and the tradition leaders at every level for them to realise that this fight is for us all and not only the Ministry of Health.

Mr Speaker, we are making progress and this has to be maintained if we have to reach every person that needs treatment and care.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Minister of Health (Dr Puma): Firstly, I would like to thank the mover of the Motion for bringing this very important issue to this House which the Government has given a lot of attention.

Mr Speaker, indeed, HIV/AIDS has posed a big challenge for the whole nation, in industry, health sectors and in all the ministries, there has been loss of trained manpower which has been acknowledged.

Mr Speaker, we need to take note of the fact that before the New Deal Government came into office, there was no public health facility in this country that was offering ARVs. There were offered mainly by the private sector at a very expensive cost. Most of us, including hon. Members here had lost a relative by 2002, because ARVs were not available. Even if the test was done, there was very little that could be done because the cost of ARVs was very high in the private sector. Now, because of the policy direction that was given by His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, who took the bold decision to set aside huge amounts of money to purchase ARVs, every year, the Government sets aside huge amounts of money to purchase ARVs and also for HIV/AIDS programmes in all the ministries.

Mr Speaker, this decision inspired our co-operating partners who came in to complement Government’s efforts.

Further, there has been a deliberate Government driven structure in the fight against HIV/AIDS which starts with the National AIDS Council, Provincial AIDS Task Forces and District AIDS Task Forces. In some districts, there are Community AIDS Task Forces. These are multi-Sectoral committees that look at the fight against HIV/AIDs so that the fight is not handled only by a single ministry, but is a consented effort of all stakeholders.

Mr Speaker, on the issue of HIV/AIDS sensitisation, I would like again, to recommend the Government, NGOS and co-operating partners, including all us for having effectively disseminated information on HIV/AIDS. At the moment, the whole country and most of the population are aware about HIV/AIDS. They may not have so much detail, but at least they know that HIV/AIDS exists. Knowledge is power. Therefore, we have to commend ourselves for spreading this kind of information to the whole country.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Puma: Mr Speaker, on the issue of ARVs, the programme has been done in phases. As I have said, in 2002 there was no public facility in this country that offered ARVS. The first phase started with UTH and Ndola Central Hospital. A lot of lessons were learnt from the pilot phase and we moved to the second phase where we had to cover all the provincial hospitals in he country, that was in 2003. Further, we moved on to phase three in 2004 where we had to cover all big health centres in districts. Now we are in phase four and we are moving from big health centres in districts to all other districts. Therefore, this is a big challenge that we are faced with.

Looking at the period up to 2003, we had no facility in the country that was offering ARVs. This is 2007 and we have so many facilities in every district of this country. This is a lot of effort that we need to appreciate and commend ourselves for.

Mr Speaker, it is not that the Government does not want to move at a faster rate, but in this expansion process, we have to learn many experiences and expand further because at every facility that opens, we have to teach the staff how to handle issues of HIV/AIDS, counseling, administering ARVs, give guidelines to our health workers, logistics to health workers and also inspect the facility to ensure that it is complying with the guidelines at the national level.

Further, as I have mentioned, this expansion needs human resource and infrastructure. Some of our facilities are still very small, whereby in some cases there is room for counseling. Therefore, we need to expand some of the infrastructure so that we are able to offer basic health services for us to extend the ARVs programme.

In addition, every facility that we open needs at least the basic equipment for us to be able to carry out base line investigation, conduct full blood count liver function test so that as we start the ART, we are able to follow up and know whether the ARVs are causing any damage to the liver or the kidneys. Further, we also need CD4 Count Machines.

Mr Speaker, I would like to mention that it is not 100 per cent necessary for us to have CD4 Count Machines to start a patient on ARVs. There are guidelines that have been produced which are used in quite a number of rural districts where you just do the base line investigations and then, assess the patients on the possibility for ARVs.

Mr Speaker, I would like to talk about the issue of stigma and discrimination. This has been a big problem that we need to over come. Slowly, we have seen that there has been an improvement in the issue of stigma and discrimination, particularly with the presence of ARVs on the market because people are seeing the benefits of ARVs.

We are also seeing more and more willingness to access the service. This is commendable. Before the introduction of ARVs, there were a lot of patients admitted to hospitals due to HIV/AIDS. Now, the number of patients with HIV/AIDS in hospitals has drastically reduced. Even the congestions in the medical wards has reduced following the introduction of ARVs.

Mr Speaker, in the past hospices were admitting a lot of patients, but now the number of admissions to hospices has actually reduced.

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Dr Puma: This is because patients are on ARVs and they go back to normal life.

Hon. Opposition Members: No!

Dr Puma: You need to visit the hospices. Mr Speaker, I am talking from experience and I am one of the first medical doctors to run Chichetekelo Hospice in Ndola on a voluntary basis in 1997.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Puma: Most of the time the hospice was full of patients, but today when you go to Chichetekelo Hospice, the situation is different.

Mr Speaker, the other thing I wish to say is that there is a need to personalise HIV/AIDS and internalise it within ourselves if we are to challenge it.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Dr Puma: The problem is that we feel HIV/AIDS is for a neighbour or colleague and not us. This is a big problem.

Ms Namugala: Hear, hear!

Dr Puma: So, we need to work together so that we internalise and personalise HIV/AIDS and appreciate that even us can contract HIV/AIDS. So the starting point is to go for Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT) as a turning point. So, I will challenge Mr Speaker, hon. Members of Parliament and other leaders to go for VCT as a starting point. This is because if you test HIV positive, there is an incentive for that. If you test HIV negative, there is also an incentive for that.

What I mean is that if you are HIV negative, you must try to maintain the status of being negative. No matter what the situation could be, if one finds himself in a compromising situation, he must always remember that he must take necessary precautions. That is an incentive. If you test HIV positive, there is an incentive because you know that your immunity is not good enough to combat disease. Therefore, if you have any illness, you need to quickly seek medical advice. Further, you need to be constantly monitored in terms of immune levels so that even before people realise that you are falling into AIDS, you start ART and nobody can tell that you are HIV positive. So, that is a very good incentive.

So, I would encourage hon. Members of Parliament to ensure that our relatives, friends and neighbours undergo VCT. Let us not allow our relatives to be sick at home meanwhile we know that ARVs are available that can assist them.

Finally, there is a need to extend the programme to rural areas and ensure that those that need ARVs can access them. I would like to mention that at the Ministry of Health at the moment, we have enough ARVs for all those that are eligible to take them. The challenge is to ensure that all those that are eligible are identified so that they benefit from the facility and are given the right treatment.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili (Roan): Mr Speaker, let me take this opportunity to thank the mover of the Motion, Hon. Dr Saviour Chishimba. The issue of HIV/AIDS should be looked at together with that of poverty. Separating HIV/AIDS and poverty will not help us achieve the fight against this pandemic.

Sir, this country is one of the countries that pay the lowest salaries to civil servants. A Zambian average family consists of about eight children. Most of the people get low salaries. For example, teachers get between K700,000 and K800,000 per month. It is quite difficult for them to maintain their families. As a result, when children are sent to colleges and universities, they envy children from rich families who have a lot of things, hence, they get boyfriends and men friends in order to get an extra income to buy commodities such as glycerine, shoes and or their hair. So, to fight HIV/AIDS, first and foremost, the bottom line is to fight poverty. To achieve this, issues of salaries for civil servants, public workers, miners, nurses …

Mr Chimbaka: MPs!

Mr Kambwili: … must be addressed …


Mr Speaker: Order!

Mr Kambwili: I withdraw, Mr Speaker.


Mr Kambwili: So, salaries for the public service, nurses and other people in the civil service must be reviewed with immediate effect if we have to achieve anything.

Mr Speaker, it is said ‘prevention is better than cure’. There is a lot of talk and too many conferences, and yet we know where the problem lies to sort out the issue of HIV/AIDS. Poverty levels in towns are very high. For instance, miners who contributed towards their pension in RAMCOZ, Luanshya have not been paid their money and it is more than five years. How do you expect to fight HIV/AIDS if people cannot be given what they worked for?

Sir, in supporting this Motion I would like to suggest the following to be looked into by the Government and of course this Parliament. From State House down to the Parliamentarians, District Commissioners and all the civil servants, there must be compulsory voluntary testing and counselling.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: If we the leaders take up this challenge, it will be very easy for us to compel or even advise our electorates to take HIV/AIDS seriously.

During election time, we heard many people saying that this presidential candidate is sick or that presidential candidate is sick. However, on record, Mr Speaker, there is only one presidential candidate who had undergone a test and publicly declared his results.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: I am challenging all the leaders in political parties, and in the Government, including myself and Hon. Guy Scott to go for an HIV test ….


Mr Kambwili: … so that we set an example to the people that we are looking after.

Mr Mtonga: Zoona!

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: In the same vein, Mr Speaker, I would recommend that we enact a law that will make prostitution a criminal offence.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: All the people who are loitering in the streets after 2000 hours in Lusaka should be arrested by the police and charged for loitering.


Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: We know that most people are on the streets for sex for money. Unless we take it upon ourselves as a Government, this issue of HIV/AIDS will never be resolved in Zambia.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Secondly, all soldiers who are sent on missions away from home must be accompanied by their wives if we have to fight this scourge.


Hon. Members: MPs!

Mr Kambwili: Thirdly, Mr Speaker, truck drivers …

Hon. Members: Members of Parliament!


Mr Kambwili: Truck drivers are a source of worry also. In South Africa where they are serious about AIDS, they have introduced a law where truck drivers are accompanied by their wives when they are going away from home. We should emulate what our friends are doing and also enact a law to that effect so that we reduce the risk of truck drivers contracting AIDS.

Mr Speaker, people who are mobile are the ones who are bringing problems. If, for example, a truck driver’s wife is HIV positive, when the driver moves from Lusaka to Kabwe, he will get another woman and she will get infected and if that woman has multiple partners, all those will be infected. If the driver is accompanied by the wife, it will be very difficult for that driver to start looking for other women because he will be provided for by his wife.


Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, even at Parliament Motel, I suggest that …


Mr Speaker: Order! Do not debate yourselves, just do the right thing.

Mr Kambwili: I thank you for your guidance. Sir, I also suggest that sex outside marriage should be made a criminal offence so that people refrain from engaging in sex outside marriage if we are to seriously fight this scourge.

Mr Speaker, the Ministry of Health is engaged in a lot of talk on prevention and fight against HIV/AIDS, and yet we have seen how our nurses operate in hospitals. If you go to Roan Constituency, all the hospitals do not have drugs and most of the hospital personnel have contracted AIDS from the people they are treating basically because the Ministry cannot provide gloves and a safe working environment. It has to start with this Government. Nurses are being overworked. You will find a clinic attended by an average of 500 people and only one nurse to attend to all of them. The nurses get so tired that in the end, they fail to observe certain procedures. This is also contributing to the problem of HIV/AIDS.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Kalumba (Chienge): Mr Speaker, firstly, I would like to thank Hon. Dr Chishimba for moving this Motion. I think it was timely. I would like to state that the Latin phrase sensors commuse translates literally into English to common sense. A better understanding of it is really shared knowledge.

Mr Speaker, we have learnt a lot about HIV/AIDS over the years which we should begin to integrate into our thinking rather than act or behave or debate as though we do not know what works and what does not work.

Mr Speaker, it is important firstly to depoliticise the discussion on HIV and the modalities of treatment. If we depoliticise, we will have clarity in terms of answering the question whether we are doing enough or not and I am glad that the debate here is moving in a none partisan fashion. I think it is important that we all are clear that we answer the question, ‘are we as a country doing enough and doing the right thing’.

Mr Speaker, the equation that explains the problem of HIV in our society is a very simple one. It is really calculating the reproductive way in which HIV spreads in the community is related to the nature of the virus itself; the behaviour that helps transmit it and the interventions that are available to deal with the other two. Firstly, to control the behaviour and the secondly, to address the nature of the virus itself. Now I am concerned that a considerable amount of discussion nowadays is going on about ARV which relates to the management of the people who are carrying the virus and I am wondering whether we are in fact paying adequate attention to the other factors that increase the reproductive rate of HIV.

Mr Speaker, I know that the churches are doing something about educating the young people who are now saying that ‘my body is the temple of Christ, and therefore, I should not abuse it’. These are important messages that need to be sustained and I hope that the thinkers in the Ministry of Health and other partners who are working in this sector should begin to examine and pick the messages and amplify them in a systematic way because I know from the research that is conducted that in the adolescent population, we are seeing real incidences of HIV which means that it is the messages targeted at the youths who are respecting their bodies and maintaining their virginity whether as young girls or young boys who stand a better chance of survival from this particular pandemic.

My second concern, Sir, apart from addressing the question of targeting messages is the implications of ARV as the first line or front line treatment modality. A person carrying HIV is not just in need of ARVs, they have many optimistic infections and so their demand and visitation to health centres tend to be more frequent than the ordinary patient which means that we are talking about 200,000 as cited in the motion. We are talking about many visits that are related to demands of health care other than HIV as a mode of response by the health service.

Mr Speaker, what that means is that health expenditures are going to be skyrocketing over the years as more and more people who were infected many years ago begin to delay treatment from many optimistic infections. The implication of that is that the health service will begin to show change than the many others and I am making that as a hypothetical statement, but I think it could be tested that many others who demand health services will not have access to drugs which are frequently demanded by people with HIV infections. So we need to think clearly about the way the health service is run to respond to the increasing demands of health care by people with HIV and to the general demand for health care by the general population. If we do not balance this issue, we will have a crisis in our health service.

Mr Speaker, there is increasing evidence of health worker burn out. Many of our staff; our young doctors become frustrated as they see you going to seek health services everyday for headache and other ailments and that results in poor quality care for the patients. If the health workers burn out, we need to think systematically about how our health service has to expand in the coming years or where we think there is enough evidence, we are facing a crisis of access to health care and a crisis of supply of services by the health system itself.

Mr Speaker, more budgetary allocation is required to the health sector more than just polemics. There is need for substantive increases in per capital expenditure to the Ministry of Health beyond to the partners of the ministry. We know that for most of us who live in rural areas our important providers are mission health services. I know from past experience that the budget allocation to the mission health sector is very low. My prayer is that the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Finance and National Planning can work together to increase the extent of the budget allocated to the mission health providers who cover the majority of our people in rural areas.

Mr Speaker, one can agree, in fact, and I can say without contradiction that almost 70 per cent of our rural population are covered in terms of first level hospital care by mission medical services. If I look at my own constituency Chiengi, our only district hospital is St Paul’s which is a mission hospital. There is no Government hospital in Kaputa, Chiengi and Nchelenge. Three districts without a Government first level hospital. So, it is important that we support these facilities not as a matter of convenience or second thought, but these are the only facilities available to the majority of the people in districts such as Kaputa, Chiengi and Nchelenge. So, let us systematically align our budget in such a way that money is given to these facilities to support the majority of our people in rural areas.

Mr Speaker, let me just say international support for HIV/AIDS is waning and without contradiction, this is clear to everybody. We have seen that the solidarity that was there in the beginning, in the early 90s, has now faded. Again, there has been international burn out. I am speaking very authoritatively because I was Chairman of the global programme in AIDS at Care International and Research, the first forum at UNAIDS. At the time, there was considerable international solidarity globally and it is here in Lusaka we made the agreement to form UNAIDS. That solidarity is dead. We are now depending on Mr Bill Gates to help countries such Zambia. Surely, we should still continue to advocate for greater international responsibility in the fight against HIV/AIDS. It should not be left to individual countries because HIV/AIDS does not know borders.

Mr Speaker, not too long ago, many of our neighbours were boasting that they did not have a problem, only Zambia and Uganda had, but see what it is now, it is all over. Some of our neighbours have a bigger tragedy than Zambia. So, it is important that we maintain international solidarity and that the ministers of Health in Zambia stand up with their colleagues in Africa to advocate for greater solidarity to help fight the HIV/AIDS pandemic.

There was consensus, Mr Speaker, during the Abuja Declaration Heads of States, Summit, but I have seen that there is very little money which has gone into the support of that consensus. All heads of States agreed on strategies and there is more international money going into it. Unless we can mobilise more resources for this fight, I cannot see Zambia sustaining ART for the growing population which will increase beyond 200,000. ARVs are expensive drugs. Unless there is international solidarity, we will see more and more of our people failing to sustain treatment over a period of a year or two.

Lastly, Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister here talked about stigma and the need for testing and Hon. Kambwili also talked about testing and so on. I think we should think a cleverer about this. It appears that everybody or every public figure that goes for a test always comes out negative.


Dr Kalumba: Now, I have asked myself what signal does that send to the many non-public figures that test positive. We do not go to a clinic and come back to our partners and say I have syphilis or gonorrhoea or whatever. It is not a celebrity issue.


Dr Kalumba: We do not celebrate a disease. It appears in this testing thinking; somehow some public health science has been misconstrued. We need to think clearly and our colleagues perhaps in the Ministry of Health can help leaders in articulating and thinking clearly with regard to the implications of testing and publicity. As far as I can tell, most of the public figures who have declared their status after testing have been acquitted, they are negative.

Hon. Opposition Member: They are positive.

Dr Kalumba: Now, I do not know what is happening somebody says they are positive, but the implication is that it stigmatises the many small people who are told that their results are positive. How come only the rich ministers always test negative, what about us? What happens? Is this obviously the disease of the poor?

Hon. Opposition Member: Poverty.

Dr Kalumba: Sure, we need to be careful with the kind of strategies we are advocating and how we manage them.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Chishimba: Mr Speaker, once again, I would like to thank you for giving me the opportunity to wind up the debate. I listened attentively to the contributions made to the Motion by the hon. Members of Parliament who have spoken.

Firstly, Mr Speaker, some of the suggestions such as the need for Mobile ART clinics through the provision of some kind of mobile van are workable. Of course, this can be achieved if we adopt an interpreted approach because I know that we have, for instance, ZIS that has mobile vans which can be used to educate the people.

Mr Speaker, I also take cognisance of the fact that there is a need for us to make sure that we give support to the health sector for the sector to respond more effectively to the pandemic.

I thank you, Sir.

Question put and agreed to.



The Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services (Mr Mwaanga): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.

The House adjourned at 1755 hours until 1430 hours on 8th February 2007.




247. Mr Katuka (Mwinilunga East) asked the Minister of Health when the Government would re-open Kalene Training School in Mwinilunga District.

The Minister of Health (Ms Cifire): The Ministry of Health has embarked on an exercise to re-open Kalene Training School. K150,000,000 from the 2006 Budget was sent to the district to commence the rehabilitation exercise. A provision of K9,120,000,000 has been included in the 2007 Budget for the rehabilitation of training schools, among them Kalene Training School. Once the rehabilitation is completed and the General Nursing School certificates that the school has the necessary amenities to operate as a nursing school, and then the school will be re-opened. In fact, it is among the first four schools that are earmarked for re-opening this year.

I thank you, Sir.