Debates- Tuesday, 14th November, 2006

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Tuesday, 14th November, 2006

The House met at 1430 hours







The Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources (Mr Pande): Madam Speaker, following the recent incident of polluting the Kafue River by Konkola Copper Mines PLC (KCM) and the interest shown in the matter by this august House and the nation at large, it is fitting that I issue a statement. Before I do so, I wish to express the Government’s regret over the incident which has inconvenienced some sections of the population in Chingola.

From the 4th to 6th November, 2006, KCM discharged highly acidic effluent from the Tailing Leach Plant into the Kafue River through Mushishima and Chingola streams, consequently killing the fish. The tailings from the Leach Plant are in the form of a slurry. The spillage also resulted in a serious disruption of domestic water supply to Chingola residents, as the water utility company suspended the abstraction of water from the river. According to the assessment carried out by the Environmental Council of Zambia (ECZ), the spillage was very acidic with a pH, a measure of acidity, of 2.4 units, from the neutral scale of 7.0.

Madam Speaker, the pollution was a result of a tailings pipeline which burst. Konkola Copper Mines PLC has been using the pipelines which they inherited from Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines (ZCCM) to transfer tailings from the Tailings Leach Plant to Muntimpa Tailings Dam. The three pipelines, each nine kilometres long, have deteriorated over time. The Muntimpa Tailings Dam is the final point for the disposal for all suspended solids from the Tailings Leach Plant.

The situation experienced recently is not accidental, but a result of the failure of the current mine owners to implement the KCM Nchanga Mine Environmental Management Plan (EMP) that was inherited from Anglo-American Corporation, the previous owners of the mine. This plan, developed in 2001, was the basis on which the mining project was approved by the Environmental Council of Zambia in consultation with the Mines Safety Department. Some of the mitigation measures that were contained in the Environmental Management Plan are as follows:

(a) Discharge of effluent from the Tailings Leach Plant through the Pollution Control Dam was to consist mainly of storm water runoff. In the event of a spill, provisions were to be made to neutralise the effluent and or return it to the process circuit. Effluent discharged through the Tailings Dam would have been neutralised along with the tailings slurry;

(b) cleaning up of drainage channels was to be done on a regular basis as part of the maintenance programme. The programme aims at ensuring that all drainage channels are kept free of debris and sediments, thereby preventing carryover with storm water; and

(c) the use of lime to neutralise acidic spills in the event of an emergency.

Regrettably, at the time of this incident, the company had no lime in stock, yet it was pumping highly acidic tailings which corroded the pipe’s rubber lining.

Madam Speaker, the Environmental Council of Zambia has been monitoring the implementation of the Environment Management Plan. During the inspection conducted in June this year, it was observed that some of the remedial measures were not put in place in full. As a result, the Environmental Council of Zambia gave KCM a deadline of 31st December, 2006 to reach full compliance or face sanctions as stipulated by the law.

The action taken by the Environmental Council of Zambia on 8th November, 2006, to cancel all the pollution licences following this unfortunate development was meant to curb any further endangering of life and the environment. The cancellation of the licences was to be effected if KCM were not going to comply with the requirements at the end of December, 2006. We are aware that this action has affected operations in other parts of the mine, especially the concentrator which feeds the Tailings Leach Plant.

In the meantime, Madam Speaker, KCM is de-silting the Chingola Stream starting with the section at the bridge using four dam trucks, three excavators, two front-end loaders and one bull dozer. The de-silting operation is now conducted around the clock after the installation of two lighting towers. The Environmental Council of Zambia staff are now on the ground to closely monitor these operations.

As of Saturday, 11th November, 2006, both water utilities, Mulonga and Nkana, affected by this incident, had confirmed commencing pumping of water to the residents of Chingola who had been without water for about five days.

Madam Speaker, as a way forward, the Environmental Council of Zambia will only renew the pollution licences and the Tailing Leach Plant to operate once KCM has taken necessary measures to fully take remedial measures. It is, therefore, mandatory for KCM to de-silt the Pollution Control Dam so as to bring spillway effluent discharges in compliance with the requirements of the law. KCM must also install new transfer tailings pipelines to Muntimpa Dam to ensure that pipe bursts are prevented and the Chingola Stream is de-silted.

Madam Speaker, the Environmental Protection and Pollution Control Act Cap. 204 of the Laws of Zambia provides specific penalties for offences of polluting the environment or contravening any of its provisions.

In order to enforce the provisions of this Act, the Environmental Council of Zambia will proceed to prosecute KCM once field verifications have been completed. The verifications are necessary to provide the required evidence for the case to be sustained in a court of law. To this end, I have already directed ECZ to ensure that these verifications are finalised by Friday, this week.

This incident should serve as a warning to all in the industry that environmental and indeed, labour laws of this land should be respected. Much as we have gone out of our way to accommodate new mine owners, we are not going to condone complacency on their part and a deliberate flouting of our laws. It must be remembered that laws are made to safeguard the interest of citizens.

Madam Speaker, I have further directed ECZ to ensure that the existing law on environmental protection is enforced and complied with fully.

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Madam Speaker: Order!

Hon. Members are now free to ask questions or seek clarification on the Ministerial Statement given by the hon. Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources.

Mr Mukanga (Kantanshi): Madam Speaker, I would like to find out who is going to compensate the people on the Copperbelt since they have all been exposed to acid contamination from the Kafue River.

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, for those who have evidence of having been affected by the contamination, there are stipulated laws in this country on how they should ask for compensation. The people who contaminated the water are the ones who should be sued and they should compensate those affected. Compensation comes after suing. One cannot compensate without proving the fact that people have been affected by the pollution of the water.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sikota (Livingstone): Madam Speaker, the hon. Minister has said that the Government was aware as early as June this year that there was this danger to the public. I would like to find out from him why he allowed this for a period of more than six months, exposing the Zambian people to this danger. Further, I would like to find out why the Government did not ask Konkola Copper Mine (KCM) not to operate the Tailings Plant until they had rectified everything like they have now.

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, an agreement was reached at that time since what we observed was not to our satisfaction. KCM were given a timeframe because at the time, the situation did not pose as much danger as it does now. What has happened now is that there is a pipe burst. As I have explained in the statement, KCM used acid without neutralising it. Had they neutralised it, the pipes would not have burst. This is a new development and is different from what was found at the time ECZ visited them.

I thank you, Madam.

Mr Kambwili (Roan): Madam Speaker, we have been getting information from the newspapers that some people were admitted to Nchanga and Konkola Mine Hospitals with diarrhoea related to the pollution. I would like to find out from the hon. Minister how many people were admitted, how many are still in hospital and how many have been discharged so far?

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, as of now, the full details of those who have been hospitalised have not reached my office.

I thank you, Madam.

Mr Hachipuka (Mbabala): Madam Speaker, I would like to ask the hon. Minister whether he will undertake to brief this august House on the administrative actions KCM has taken as a result of their inefficiency which has been tolerated until there has been an outcry from the public. Could he undertake to give another statement because I am keen to know the internal procedures of KCM since someone has erred? I would also like to know what has been done to assure us that there will be no repeat of such incidents.

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, the hon. Member is aware that KCM falls under the Ministry of Mines and Minerals Development. Therefore, this is the ministry in a better position to know the administrative actions that have been taken in the industry. My concern is on the environment part of the incident.

I thank you, Madam.

Mr Mtonga (Kanyama): Madam Speaker, I wish to find out from the hon. Minister if there is a specific Government policy on these disasters involving the environment in the mining sector on the Copperbelt that are on the increase. Does the Government have any stance on this issue to ensure that the right of Zambians to clean water is upheld or do they want to leave it to the poor compound persons to sue the giant companies when the Government is there to uphold the Millennium Development Goal for the poor Zambian?

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, the Government is determined to provide clean water to the people. With regard to the policy, the Ministry is working on the Environmental Policy besides the law, which is the Pollution Act that provides for the protection of the environment which includes water.

I thank you, Madam.

Dr Scott (Lusaka Central): Madam Speaker, has any estimate, at this point in time, been made as to how far downstream unacceptable levels of contamination will reach Kitwe, Namwala, Mazabuka or Lusaka?

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, as the water flows, the acid levels reduce as well. At the Environmental Council of Zambia, we test some samples of the water along the Kafue River.

I thank you, Madam.

Mr Ngoma (Sinda): Madam Speaker, according to the hon. Minister’s response, those affected have to sue. Is the Government considering taking any legal action against KCM on behalf of its citizens, considering the fact that most of the people are very poor?

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, the Government has no immediate plans to assist the people. Like I said, when it is proven that people have been affected, the Government has a Legal Aid Department which may assist, depending on their economic status.

I thank you, Madam.

Mrs Musokotwane (Katombola): Madam Speaker, I would like to know what reason KCM gave for polluting the river when they knew very well that the water was used by human beings?

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, as I stated earlier, this was due to a pipe burst and there was no one present at the time this happened. People only came when the acid had already reached the river.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Dr Machungwa (Luapula): Madam Speaker, this incident has happened at a time when KCM is making a lot of profits because of the high copper prices. Therefore, it is not a question of luck of funds. Can he confirm that this happened because of the incompetence in the mines since Zambians who were employed by the predecessor, ZCCM have been dismissed and replaced by foreigners, some of who are incompetent?

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, I do not have the information on the qualifications of the members of staff at KCM. Therefore, I cannot confirm what the hon. Member of Parliament is suggesting.

I thank you, Madam.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasongo (Bangweulu): Madam Speaker, the hon. Minister, in response to the concerns that have been raised by hon. Members of Parliament, has said the concerns can only be addressed by the hon. Minister of ….

Mr Imenda: On a point of order, Madam Speaker!

Madam Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Imenda: Madam Speaker, firstly, let me apologise to my colleague who was on the Floor for raising this point of order.

Madam Speaker, is the hon. Minister of Home Affairs in order to keep quiet when the police have continued shooting at innocent Zambians? Lately, in Lufwanyama, the Police shot at innocent children who have not been proved guilty. We demand a Ministerial Statement from the Minister of Home Affairs on this matter.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Madam Speaker: This incident has been explained outside this House. However, we will ask the hon. Minister of Home Affairs to give the status of the shootings. Otherwise, what is happening in Lufwanyama is not something we should really have drawn attention to at this time. I therefore, ask the hon. Minister of Home Affairs to come and give a statement on what is happening in the Police Service.

Hon. Opposition Members: Tomorrow!

Madam Speaker: At a later stage.


Mr Kasongo: Madam Speaker, the hon. Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources has insinuated that some of the concerns that have been raised by hon. Members of Parliament can only be addressed by the hon. Minister of Mines and Minerals Development. Is he suggesting that the hon. Minister of Mines and Minerals Development will also give a Ministerial Statement on the same issue at an appropriate time?

Madam Speaker: Order! Let me guide the House. That question of clarification seems to be addressing another hon. Minister. The Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources is the one who has given the Ministerial Statement and these are supposed to be questions of clarification on the Ministerial Statement.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo): Madam Speaker, the hon. Minister mentioned that this incident is out of negligence and is not an accident. He further stated that KCM were abstracting acid without liming. This, again, shows total ignorance of the disposition of acids. Could the hon. Minister indicate that he knows the reasons this has happened and that now, it is his ministry’s duty to assist Zambians who will claim for whatever they will suffer as a result of the leakage?

Madam Speaker: The hon. Minister of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources may repeat what he has said on the hon. Member’s concern?

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, I stated that at the moment, the Government has no intention of assisting unknown affected people until it is proved they have been affected by the pollution. We will look at the economic status of the people who want to sue. For example, people like yourself, Hon. Muntanga, cannot be assisted because you are well. It will depend on the status and proof that the polluted water has affected them.

I thank you, Madam.

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka): Madam Speaker, from the Ministerial Statement, it is clear that the Environmental Council of Zambia may have a glossary of companies whose operations may have an effect on the environment such as the KCM incident. Arising from the fact that the ministry knew that KCM was not compliant with all the safety procedures that have led to this disaster, how many other companies or industries with operations that may have a direct effect on the environment do not follow the procedures of compliance to safety.

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, ECZ does monitor all the industries that operate in the country. The issue of KCM is like when one goes to a butchery and notices that the way things are done is not right, he or she can advise what should be done by a given date. The butchery owners then start working on what you have advised them to. That is what happened with KCM who even came up with a budget to put in place what they were advised by ECZ. ECZ went back to ensure that they had actually started working on what they had advised.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Mushili (Ndola Central): Madam Speaker, we appreciate the response of the ministry, including the two actions that have been taken namely, the prosecution of the offender and withdrawal of the licence.

However, Madam Speaker, my question is that I am not very sure about the preventive measures the ministry will take other than prosecuting the mine owners who never listen.

Further, the Ministry of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources must also accept the blame. There have been some environmentally-unfriendly reports which have been sent to the ministry, especially from my constituency, Ndola. Ndola Lime Company and Chilanga Cement Plc have, for a long time, been polluting the air continuously to the extent that some committees have been formed to take the two companies to court, but nothing has happened so far. Therefore, we need a response from the hon. Minister.

Hon. Government Members: What is your question?

Mr D. Mwila: On a point of order?

Mr Mushili: My question was: what preventive measures will the ministry of Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources take to avoid a recurrence of what has taking place.

Mr D. Mwila: On a point of order?

Mr Mushili: Madam Speaker, we need further investigations on KCM because from the information we have received so far, we believe the management of KCM have proved incompetent by not neutralising the acid with lime which has caused …

Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! Hon. Member, you are debating. You are not asking a point of clarification. Could the hon. Minister answer if he has picked anything?


Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, I stated that before we allow any operations, some measures must put in place. In addition, ECZ conducts inspections. These are the preventive measures we are talking about. KCM are going to buy new pipes. There will be no other preventive measures other than the Environmental Council of Zambia asking KCM to do what we feel should be done in order to correct the situation. This will be followed by our usual inspections which we conduct three times.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Dr Katema (Chingola): Madam Speaker, we have been told that KCM was pumping un-neutralised tailings. We understand Ndola Lime Company is closed at the moment. I would like to know if Ndola Lime Company has been opened lest some companies could be pumping out un-neutralised tailings due to unavailability of lime in the country.

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, the hon. Member knows that Ndola Lime is closed, but I am not in a position to know whether it has been closed. However, if companies know that they need lime, other efforts can be made to import it. KCM imported lime last time. Probably this time, they did not import. Therefore, there will be no excuse for any company to say that they do not have lime because Ndola Lime is not operating. There are other ways of obtaining lime.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Beene (Itezhi-Tezhi): Madam Speaker, the hon. Minister seems to have concentrated on the issue of KCM. What assurance is the hon. Minister giving the people on the Copperbelt and other towns, including Kafue on the emissions …

Mr D. Mwila: On a point of order?

Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! A point o order is raised.

Mr D. Mwila: Madam Speaker, is the hon. Minister of Labour and Social Security in order to remain silent without informing the nation or this House why Maamba Collieries employees haven’t been paid their salaries for four months?


Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! Could the hon. Member for Itezhi-Tezhi Continue?

Mr Beene: Madam Speaker, the hon. Minister seems to have just concentrated on the KCM incident which has just happened. What assurance is he giving to the nation or the mining towns, including towns such as Kafue and other places where the situation is unstable on the emissions of gas?

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, I have concentrated on KCM because the statement was on KCM and that was the issue which was raised in this House.

I thank You, Madam.

Major Chizyuka (Namwala): Madam Speaker, as you know the Kafue River passes through Namwala therefore, we are just as concerned as the people on the Copperbelt. In August, KCM fraudulently disregarded our laws and the pipes going to the tailings dam burst on account of having been no lime. They were within the timeframe for the final warning, but again, another burst has occurred. What early warning or rapid response systems are available to alert KCM and the Environmental Council of Zambia that the HP levels of the acid that is being discharged are higher than minus seven?

Madam Speaker, an HP of 2.8 is quite high.

Hon. Government Members: What is your question?

Major Chizyuka: What measures are available before we have a catastrophe of many Zambians dying and KCM going back to their country of origin, leaving us with so many dead people on the Copperbelt? This …

Madam Speaker: Hon. Member you have asked your question.

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, each time the Environmental Council of Zambia visits the mines, particularly KCM, they measure the acidic content in the effluent. It is at that point that when they see that the levels are going beyond the acceptable level, they move in and advise management to rectify the situation.

I thank you, Madam.

Mr Lubinda (Kabwata): Madam Speaker, I would like to find out whether the Hon. Minister is aware that technology these days provides for early warning systems that can be put in river ways so that they can warn everybody, including the operators, ECZ and the hon. Minister when the levels of toxicity increase beyond the acceptable level. If he is aware, is he considering ensuring that all these mines do invest in such systems to protect the Zambian people from pollution?

Mr Pande: Madam Speaker, I am grateful for that question. It is an issue which we can pursue and see if we can compel the mining companies to invest money in that system.

Mr Lubinda: Very good!{mospagebreak}




(Debate resumed)

Dr Machungwa (Luapula): Madam Speaker, thank you very much for availing me this chance to debate the Motion of Thanks to His Excellency President Mwanawasa’s Speech on the Official Opening of the First Session of the Tenth National Assembly which was on 27th October, 2006.

Firstly, Madam, I wish to begin by congratulating you on your election as Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly of Zambia. As most of my colleagues have said, we expect great things from you because you are the first lady to hold that post in the history of this country. As far as we are concerned, we stand here to work with you closely so that you can perform. We are confident that your contribution will bring the performance of this House to higher levels so that we can enhance the Separation of Powers among the three tenets of the State, that is this House, the Legislature, the Executive and the Judiciary.

I also wish to congratulate the Deputy Chairperson of Committees of the Whole House, Hon. Ambassador Mkondo Lungu on his unopposed election. In fact, this is an improvement from what happened last time when there was quite a lot of controversy on the election of officers. This time, he just sailed through. This is also true for the Speaker himself. I am confident that with you at the helm of business of this House, this House is going to excel.

Madam Speaker, I wish to congratulate all my colleagues on being elected to this House. Firstly, I would start with those who were nominated, those who were re-nominated, those who were elected for the first time, and those who were re-elected. It is indeed, a challenge for us to perform to the standards expected by the people of Zambia.

Personally, I take this as a very serious challenge because this is the fourth time in a roll that I have been elected Member of Parliament for Luapula Constituency. Looking at the other Members of this House, I am the only Member of Parliament in this country who has been elected four times in a roll in the same constituency.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: However, others believe that I am the longest serving Member of this House. That is not true. At the moment, among the Members of Parliament in here, the longest serving Member is Hon. V. J. Mwaanga. He was nominated by President Kaunda in 1973.


Dr Machungwa: In 1978, he contested the Choma seat and won. After some time, due to some political reorganisation, he came back in 1991 and won the Roan seat under the MMD ticket. He re-contested and won again in 1996. In 2002, he was nominated by President Mwanawasa owing to some problems he left.


Dr Machungwa: Again, after two and half years, he was re-nominated and he came back.


Dr Machungwa: This time around, he was re-nominated again.


Dr Machungwa: It would not surprise us if in future, again, he could be re-nominated.


Hon. PF Members: Extraordinary life!

Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker, Luapula Constituency is a very unique constituency. I thank the people of that constituency for entrusting their welfare in me for the fourth time.

I also wish to thank the Patriotic Front and its President Michael Sata, …

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: … who has a vision for Zambia.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: At the moment, he is the only person who has a vision for what is happening in this country.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!


Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker, Luapula Constituency consists of six islands that are scattered on the Bangweulu swamps. This is a unique constituency because all transport and communication depends on water. The administrative set up of this country is not suitable for this kind of constituency. Therefore, it is very difficult to administer a constituency such as this one.

Schools in the area are in a bad state, there are very few teachers and furniture is in a poor state and in some cases it does not exist. There are four islands that have no schools and we rely on communities to set up schools.

The canals that are used for transport are often not dredged and are in a bad state. As a result, transport is a problem. There is no public transport in the constituency.

There are only four rural health centres. The police post that was put up was taken away and I will be approaching the Hon. Minister of Home Affairs to see if something can be done about this. It is indeed, a challenging constituency.

Madam, we have brought some development to the area that people can see and appreciate, but we still have a long way to go.

Mr Mubika: There is nothing there!

Dr Machungwa: Therefore, it is not true that there is nothing there. Otherwise, the people would not have re-elected me Hon. Mubika.

Ms Phiri: That is right!

Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker, permit me to turn to what the President stated in his address to this House. At page three of his speech, the President called for reconciliation among all Zambians. This is a good cause, but perhaps what is important is to ensure that steps are taken to bring about reconciliation. It is one thing to say we need reconciliation and another when nothing is done about it.

We need to bring the people together. If people who voted for the Opposition are going to be threatened with dismissal, that is not going to bring reconciliation. Every individual in this country has a right to vote for whoever they please, but they are still citizens and they should enjoy the benefits from the Government. They should get employed in Zambia, even in the Government. If people are sick and are supposed to go for treatment and you say, ‘no they cannot go for treatment because they must be attending court sessions’ that is not reconciliation.

Hon. Patriotic Front Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: If the Government sets up a committee of doctors that recommends that someone should go for treatment, and we say, ‘no, that person cannot go for treatment’, what reconciliation are we trying to bring?


Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker, let me now come to what the President said at page four of his speech. The President calls on all hon. Members not to be partisan when deliberating issues. This is extremely important because we are all Members of this House, but if some hon. Members are going to try to belittle others because they belong to the Ruling Party, then we cannot get that kind of non-partisan debate that we need in the House. I will give you an example. During his debate in this House, the hon. Deputy Minister (Mr Mulongoti) had this to say and I quote from the Daily Parliamentary Debates.

‘Some hon. Members you are seeing want to pretend that they know, but I can assure you that they do not know. The difficulty is that some of them carry the Standard 6 school certificate acquired many years ago and cockroaches have been playing with them. All these issues you told us during the campaigns, we have heard, stop about that, we want new issues. If you have no new issues then listen to us because the challenge of delivery is with us and we know what the people of Zambia want. They want good roads, employment, education, good health and good water. You did not come here for the purpose of reminding us about the same issues. Unless you co-operate with us, you will have difficulties because the treasury is in our hands. The instruments of Government are with us …

Hon. Patriotic Front Members: Shame!


Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! Let us not turn this House into some political anthill; we should debate orderly by listening to one another. We all have our opportunities to debate. Will the hon. Member continue, please?

Dr Machungwa: He continued, Madam Speaker, ‘all you can do is talk, but we have the resources and without co-operation with us, you are in trouble.’

Madam Speaker, we all come from different areas and different walks of life. There are academicians, church leaders, businessmen, former marketeers, and so on in this House, but we are all hon. Members and nobody can belittle anybody. Never mind one’s education, but he or she is representing the people of Zambia. We cannot have a nominated hon. Deputy Minister who has been in this House before, and who knows the rules of this House belittling others and even threatening the people and their representatives that if they do not co-operate with the Ruling Party, they get nothing.

Madam Speaker, it is a constitutional right for us to keep the Government on its toes, oppose it and make sure that it performs. However, if they begin to threaten us, what are they doing? It is very important that the Leader of Government Business in the House, who is not listening right now, should come and give a statement to this House if, in fact, the sentiments of the hon. Deputy Minister who is nominated by the President and is a Member of the NEC represents Government policy when he says that, ‘if you do not do what we say, then you get nothing’. This is a very serious issue and it cannot be entertained in this House.


Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker, let me now come to an issue where the President was talking about economic management. On this, I want to quote something from what I stated last time. The President at page thirteen of his Address said something about what we expect this House and the Government to do. I will quote from the Daily Parliamentary Debates of the 16th February to June, 2006 Sitting which was the debate to adjourn the House. I want to quote myself and this is what I said:

‘Sir, the aim of Government is to improve the lives of people, improve the quality and living standards of the people. Sir, I have always said that when the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning says we have achieved macro- economic stability, fiscal performance has improved, the Kwacha is stronger and inflation has gone down, I have always asked him “how does this translate into what people can see? What tangible results are there? Are these macro-economic figures indicating that there are reduced prices, goods have become abundant, taxes have reduced or is there increasing buying power, better health service and better roads?” If these things are not there, then we are just playing what I might call macro-economic ping-pong.’

Now listen to what the President said and I quote:

‘Mr Speaker, whilst we have made important macro-economic gains, admittedly the standard of living of the majority of Zambians remains poor. This was the message from the electorate in both the rural and urban Zambia. The people now want results and translation of the macro-economic achievements into uplifting of the standard of living’.

He went on to bemoan the lack of jobs, poor or lack of roads, bad water and sanitation, poor health services and education services etc. That was the President talking. I am glad the President is now coming along. The same things that President Michael Sata of Patriotic Front has been saying are what the Republican President is saying now.


Dr Machungwa: It means if we can put our mind to it now, we can forge ahead.


Dr Machungwa: At page fourteen, the President addressed himself to the issue of housing and this is what he said …


Dr Machungwa: … ‘Housing conditions for many of our citizens require immediate and effective attention. Hence, we will continue to strive to put in place a conducive private sector environment to allow for the construction of decent houses for our citizens. For the public service workers, we have already put in place a comprehensive housing loan scheme’.

Madam Speaker, this is a good pronouncement, however, relying on the private sector to build houses for our people will mean that the majority of our people will never afford this housing because they do not have the economic power to buy. We need a programme of empowerment like that which existed in the Government of his predecessor where a lot of Zambians were empowered; they were able to buy Government housing and houses from parastatals. The ordinary Zambian will not be able to afford houses that are built by the private sector without any assistance from the Government. Otherwise, they will be confined to the shanties forever.

On taxation, the President stated that the Government was studying a report on reviewing taxes. The President informed the House that the Government would introduce tax incentives for investment in rural areas in the 2007 Budget. Madam Speaker, I commend the President for this move, however in order for these incentives to bear fruit, it is necessary for the Government to address the issue of high fuel costs in the rural areas.

I have stated in this House before that we are punishing the people in rural Zambia where there is even greater poverty. Fuel is the engine of economic development. Everything is moved by fuel. To use tractors, transport goods and for people to move, they need fuel. If poor people are meant to pay so much more than the people in the urban areas where there is even greater development, what are we doing? In order for this to work, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning should look at the tax structure and reduce taxes on fuel slightly in the rural areas so that we can equate the cost of fuel in the rural areas to that in the urban areas.

Hon. Opposition Member: Yah!

Dr Machungwa: If ZESCO can do it with electricity and Coca-cola Company can sell coca-cola at the same price in Lusaka and in Kazimule or Jhimbe border post or elsewhere, why can the Government not do the same for fuel for its own people?

Hon. Opposition Member: Kulibe boma.

Dr Machungwa: Madam Speaker, coming back to the issue of taxes, we know that the mines are making huge profits at the moment. The cost of copper at the time we sold the mines was US$1,800 per tonne. Now, it has reached almost US$8,000. So, they are making unprecedented profits. Why can we not tax them a little more? They are making what is called windfall profit. If we taxed this windfall profit, we will not be the first country to do this because the Americans and British do it. They did not expect to make this kind of money; instead, they are polluting our rivers.

Hon. Opposition Members: Yes.

Dr Machungwa: Can we not tax them more.

Hon. Opposition Members: Yes.

Dr Machungwa: In the current Budget, company tax from all companies, including the mining companies and mineral royalty tax amounted to only K536 billion while income tax from the workers of Zambia amounted to K230 billion.

Hon. Muntanga: Shame!

Dr Machungwa: In other words, the companies are contributing about five per cent to the Budget, whereas the workers are contributing 20 per cent to the Budget.

Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!

Dr Machungwa: The rich companies are carried by the workers, instead of the rich companies helping carry the workers.


Dr Machungwa: Hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning you have an opportunity now as you are reviewing the tax structure to restructure your budget so that the people of Zambia can get some relief. After all, we have reached the HIPC Completion Point.


Dr Machungwa: Was the HIPC Completion Point for the rich companies that are coming to pollute our rivers.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: I implore the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, hon. Magande, to seriously look into this issue. We expect you to reduce the tax for the workers slightly, and increase it elsewhere, may be on food or something else because that will be like playing hide and seek. Since the Government now has taken over some of the ideas from PF ...

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Machungwa: … and are working with us and since we originated the ideas, we shall support you and give you the way forward.

I thank you, Madam.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Minister of Mines and Mineral Development (Mr M. Mwale): Madam Speaker, glory be to God for enabling our beloved country conduct peaceful elections.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: We only have to look at what is happening in some neighbouring countries after elections to realise that Zambia is indeed, a peaceful country and that peace, we take for granted.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: Madam Speaker, before I go any further, allow me to add my voice to the voices of those who have spoken before me in congratulating the Speaker on his unopposed re-election to the chair. In the same vein, I congratulate you, Madam Speaker, on your election as first woman Deputy Speaker. It is no mean achievement to become first female Deputy Speaker in the history of the House.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: Allow me also to congratulate hon. Mkondo Lungu, Member of Parliament, on his re-election as Deputy Chairman of Committees of the House. Your unopposed election to your respective portfolios, Madam Speaker, demonstrates the confidence hon. Members of the House have in you to guide it in its deliberations.

Madam Speaker, may I congratulate the Members on your immediate left on their election and re-election to this House. To you hon. Members, your contributions are constructive and nation building. If it is were not for some of you re-elected members, there would have been confusion in this House as evidenced during the debate on the Motion moved by the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning on the Supplementary Estimates.

Madam Speaker, to the other members on your far left, I congratulate them too, on their deserved victory. Let there be no bitterness in their debate, …


Mr M. Mwale: … for the elections are over and the Zambian people are only looking to us for development. Therefore, we have to deliver.


Madam Speaker, I would be doing myself a disservice if I did not …

Madam Deputy Speaker: Order! Hon. Members do not debate from your chairs, and please, avoid the habit of interrupting debate that really should not be disrupted. This is a very honourable House and we have to treat it as such. If we do not, we risk degenerating into a very simple gathering where each one is shouting something while the other person is debating. Can we give the hon. Deputy Minister the opportunity to debate.

Please, can you continue.

Mr M. Mwale: Thank you, Madam Speaker. I would like to congratulate the members on your right on their victory and on forming Government.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: The Zambian people have given the MMD and His Excellency the President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, another five-year mandate to govern this country. This is irreversible. The people of Zambia have affirmed that the political constituency of this country does not start and end with the Copperbelt and Lusaka, but embraces all the nine provinces.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: The sooner our colleagues get out of the state of denial after the loss, the better for the nation so that we focus on development.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: Madam Speaker, allow me to contribute to the Motion moved by the hon. Member for Nyimba on the Address by His Excellency the President at the official opening of the first session of the 10th National Assembly.

Firstly, Madam Speaker, may I thank my party the MMD, His Excellency the President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC and NEC members for adopting me as a Parliamentary candidate for Malambo Constituency.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: Madam Speaker, Mambwe is a rural district with one constituency, namely Malambo, but had eleven aspiring parliamentary candidates. Among them, Madam Speaker, was a prince, the son of the king. I pay special tribute to the people of Malambo for electing me Member of Parliament. I will endeavour to serve them to the best of my ability.

Madam Speaker, the people of Malambo have spoken and have sent a clear message that the politics of Malambo are not a preserve for one family.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: Madam Speaker, I will be failing in my duty if I do not recognise the contribution one man made to my campaign, my immediate past Vice-President, Mr Lupando Mwape. He is a selfless man and I will remain to adore and love him. I equally thank my spiritual parents who prayed for me and always sent me bible texts of encouragement.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: Madam Speaker, the people of Malambo are grateful to His Excellency the President for appointing me Deputy Minister, Ministry of Mines and Minerals Development. It is a great honour for them for me to serve in that privileged position.

Madam Speaker, Malambo, which is in the valley, is prone to food shortages caused by hostile climatic conditions; a scenario which lowers the self esteem of the people. It is, either there are flush floods caused by too much rain on the plateau that wash away the crops or there are prolonged dry spells when crops such as maize are developing cobs and tussling and in need of moisture the most. The two climatic conditions coupled with problem animals are largely responsible for the food shortages and not laziness.

Madam Speaker, the people of Malambo are grateful to the New Deal Government for the manner in which it handled the severe food shortage in the area in the months of December to March, 2006. They are further grateful to the Government for the rapid response to the flush flood victim’s call for tents and food during the month of April, 2006. Some of the supplies had to be airlifted to areas such as Malama and Msoro.

Madam, the people of Malambo are grateful to the MMD Government for the road works being carried out by a on the Chipata/Mfuwe Road.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: The scope of works includes re-gravelling and construction of culverts and side drains. The Chinese Construction Company is doing a very commendable job, making driving on that road enjoyable. It is however, the desire of the people to have the road tarred considering that it is strategic to the development of tourism. All stakeholders are now agreed on tarring the road after the concerns on wildlife conservation were found to be grossly misrepresented.

Madam Speaker, it is also the wish of the people to see the Chinese Construction Company extend its works to the Chipata/Msoro Road.

Madam Speaker, Malambo has benefited from the Rural Electrification Programme. Four of the six chiefs’ palaces are powered from the National Grid, whilst the other two use solar panels. Regrettably, Senior Chief Nsefu’s palace is one of the two not powered from the National Grid.

Madam, as regards water, it is sad to note that some hon. Members on the other side of the House make alarming statements to the effect that there is no water in some sections of their constituencies. That is mere politicking, as we all know that water is life.

Hon. Opposition Members: Ah!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: Hon. Members should only make appeals for improved water supply in their constituencies instead of issuing alarming statements which this Government will only take as mere politicking.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M Mwale: Madam Speaker, Mambwe is a young district which attained district status in 1997 and has an acute shortage of staff accommodation. However, the local authorities are grateful for the seven low cost houses constructed under the Ministry of Local Government and Housing. The desire of the local authorities is to construct the houses expeditiously in order to meet some of the accommodation needs of the district.

Madam, the people of Malambo Valley are happy with the Government’s policy of Community Resource Boards (CRBs), particularly where the income from hunting safaris is shared between the communities and the Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA). The financial resources channeled through CRBs have been utilised in a number of community-based projects such as schools, clinics and boreholes. The people are now seeing the benefits from the wildlife resources and this has contributed greatly to changing their perceptions on wild game. While here in Lusaka, whenever we see game, we see meat in the pot, the people of Malambo perceive game as dollars.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: There is however, a cost to these increased human/animal conflicts. The solution to the conflicts does not lie in the indiscriminate shooting of the problem animals, but in the formulation of a land use plan acceptable to all stakeholders. Man was created to have dominion over creation and that is where the principle conservation comes in.

Madam Speaker, as far as the people of Malambo are concerned, the New Deal Government is working. The people are grateful that in the last three years, three more Rural Health Centres have been opened, bringing the total number of Rural Health Centres in the district to ten.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: The three new Rural Health Centres serve the people of Chief Malama which is remote and bordering Petauke, Mphomwa in Chief Jumbe’s area and Chilanga in Kakumbi. However, there is a need of an ambulance particularly for St. Luke’s Mission Clinic in Chief Msoro that is quite distant from the District Hospital.

Madam, as regards HIV/AIDS, Kamoto Hospital is now administering ARVs. The hospital benefited from the Global Fund through the Zambia National Aids Network (ZNAN), as it is equipped with CD4 count machine.

Madam Speaker, for the benefit of the House, Mambwe has three distinct centres of development. These are the Administrative Centre, Mfuwe Airport and the National Park Gate Area. Mfuwe Airport and the National Park Gate Area are twenty-five kilometres and fifty-five kilometres from the Administrative Centre, respectively.

Madam, the Zambia National Broadcasting Co-operation (ZNBC) television reception is restricted to the airport and the National Park Gate Area. However, the Administrative Centre Community is pleased to learn that they will have television reception in the next three weeks.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr M. Mwale: The liberalisation of communication provision has benefited the people of Malambo. They are part of the Celtel Network family and they wish the facility could be extended to Chief Msoro’s area which has a large farming community.

Madam Speaker, we are all agreed that corruption is a cancer that eats away the moral fibre of our nation and contributes to the under development of our country. However, the worry is when certain quarters introduce terminologies such as selective prosecution. They came to the Eastern Province to advance their cause during the run-up to the Tripartite Elections. The wise people of the east only asked who had been prosecuted and served a full sentence due to corruption. It is only an easterner who diluted their argument. Corruption is corruption. No wonder our God could not let others assume the reigns of power, as they had ganged up with hidden agendas. The Tatwiba, tutolapofye, meaning we do not steal, but only help ourselves notion should be of the past.


Mr M. Mwale: Madam, this Government has listened to the serious concerns raised on casualisation and low benefits from high copper prices. Those issues are handled by the relevant ministry, that is Labour and Social Security and Finance and National Planning.

Madam Speaker, as regards mine accidents, one hon. Member of the House made a serious allegation against the Mines Safety Department to the effect that they are compromised. In the Mufulira Division of Mopani Mines, the Mines Safety Department is on record of having canceled eight Blasting Licences for mine captains, shift bosses and section bosses following an accident. That action shows that the Mines Safety Department is doing their job. For the benefit of the Members of the House, the consequences of a suspension, withdrawal or cancellation of a Blasting Licence are that one cannot operate as a supervisor in the mines. It is a very serious disciplinary action.

Madam, we have to acknowledge that our mines are no longer shallow, they are deeper and that has given rise to the challenges of ground control and safety.

Finally, Madam Speaker, I take note that there is a retired Reverend on your left. I urge her to take time to reflect on Isaiah 8:10 and Isaiah 43:14.

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


Ms Kapata (Mandevu): Thank you Madam Speaker, for giving me this opportunity to deliver my maiden speech to the people of Zambia.

Firstly, let me join other hon. Members in congratulating Mr Speaker, on his re-election as Speaker of the National Assembly. I also wish to congratulate you on your election as Deputy Speaker and first woman in Zambia to hold this position since independence. This shows that though we have not yet attained the SADC declaration of women in decision making position, Zambia is heading towards achieving this goal.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Kapata: Madam Speaker, I also wish to congratulate the Deputy Chairman of Committees on his re-election. To all of you, I say we, as PF, look forward to a good working relationship with you on a non-partisan basis.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Kapata: Madam Speaker, I also want to thank the President of the Patriotic Front, Mr Michael Chilufya Sata, a man of action, and the Party Secretary-General, Hon. Guy Scott, for showing confidence in me by nominating me to stand as a Member of Parliament. My nomination came at the right time when women in the nation are fighting for equal representation in governance and decision-making positions as enshrined in the SADC Declaration of ensuring 30 per cent of women representation in decision-making positions.

Madam Speaker, I also wish to congratulate other hon. Members on winning the just- ended tripartite elections and also those who were nominated by the Republican President. My advice to all hon. Members is that they must work hard. We must change from politics of personalities to politics of policies and from politics of selfishness to public service. We must therefore, visit our constituencies frequently.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Kapata: Madam Speaker, allow me to thank the people of Mandevu for turning out in numbers to vote for leaders of their choice. The Patriotic Front had a landslide victory for presidential, parliamentary and local government positions. I also want to take this opportunity to send a message to the electorate in Mandevu to utilise the National Assembly Office situated in Kabanana to air their grievances.

Mandevu Constituency is the largest in Zambia with a population of 94,000. Despite Zambia having achieved the HIPC Completion Point, poverty levels are still high in Mandevu. This nation is failing to feed its people with the staple food forty-two years after independence. The price is too high for people to afford a bag of mealie-meal. In a nation where people fail to afford the staple food, it is a sign of failure on the part of the Government. It is sad to note that people cannot afford to buy enough food for their families and are having one meal a day in Mandevu Constituency.

Hon. PF Members: Shame.

Ms Kapata: Infrastructure in Mandevu Constituency is dilapidated. There is no maintenance to the buildings in the constituency. Feeder roads as well as drainage systems need attention. People have paid service charges for roads, water and sewerage, but none of these have been attended to, making the compound a sorry sight. I appeal to the Government to give the local authority the power vested in it in order to correct the situation without interference because that is what decentralisation entails.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Kapata: Madam Speaker, forty-two years after independence, most parts of Mandevu have no water. Women are forced to rise as nearly as 0400 hours to draw water from communal taps located long distances from their homes. This is not safe for women who mostly end up being raped and assaulted. We need to bring water to the doorstep of every household in Mandevu.

After the tripartite elections, illegal land allocation has sprung up in Mandevu Constituency. Known MMD party cadres are allocating land illegally. This is the land behind the SOS Village as evidenced by the advertisement by the National Housing Authority who are the rightful owners. Residents of Chipata Compound have been allocated land along the railway line and in Garden Compound, residents have been allocated land next to the sewerage dam.

Madam Speaker, forty-two years after independence, people in Mandevu are still ferried on wheelbarrows to the health centres. Mandevu has three clinics which cater for a population of 94,000. The trend of people paying user fees and then told to come back after twenty-four hours for services already paid for should be stopped immediately. When they come back, it takes the whole day for them to be seen by a clinical officer. The patient then walks out of the health centre with a prescription to buy panadol.

Mandevu Constituency is one that has been affected by HIV/AIDS. The procedure of issuing ARVs is cumbersome. When one is diagnosed HIV positive, it takes a long time for that patient to be put on ARVs. The reason being clinics do not have CD 4 Count machines. It takes a month for someone to be put on ARVs. This is what happens in Mandevu Constituency which is in Lusaka, but I wonder what happens to the people in the rural areas.


Ms Kapata: It is sad to note that the health infrastructure is in a state of disrepair and there is no maintenance. Health centres suffer from a critical lack of basic equipment for blood pressure. If you go to a local clinic in Mandevu, you will not be examined because there is no equipment to examine patients suffering from High Blood Pressure.

Hon. PF Members: Shame!

Ms Kapata: Madam Speaker, allow me to highlight some of the issues that affect nurses some of who live in my constituency. Nurses were last given uniforms when PF President, Mr Michael Sata was Minister of Health, ten years ago in 1996. Since then, nurses have never received any uniform from the Government. The allowance given to nurses is not enough to buy uniforms. I am therefore, appealing to the Government to increase the nurses’ uniform allowance.

Madam Speaker, senior nurses are not given transport or car loans compared to their counterparts, the doctors who work alongside them. Nurses use public transport, and during the rainy season, they have difficulty keeping their uniforms clean.

Further, nurses have not benefited from the Housing Ownership Scheme since they live in hostels that are dilapidated. I appeal to the Government to look into the plight of nurses by giving them house and car loans.

Madam Speaker, promotion of nurses is non existent. Despite all the post basic training they undertake, it is difficult for a nurse to be promoted. I am also appealing to the Government to promote nurses after each course they undertake.

Mr Mtonga: Zoona!

Ms Kapata: Nurses should be promoted to decision-making positions in the Ministry of Health. The Ministry of Health has no Director of Nursing. We need a Director of Nursing to look into the plight of nurses at a higher level in the Government.

Madam Speaker, there is a need to have a retention scheme for nurses to avoid the migration of nurses to the United Kingdom, United States of America and other neighbouring countries. A salary of K500,000 per month is a mockery to nurses who risk their lives in this era of HIV/AIDS. This salary has to cater for uniforms, transport, accommodation, school fees and food. That is why nurses leave Zambia for greener pastures.

Madam Speaker, allow me to speak on behalf of the youths who are unemployed. When you take a walk or drive in Mandevu as early as 0600 hours, you are met with a sorry sight of drunken youths who are both educated and uneducated. There are no jobs for educated youths despite having trained in certain fields. The Government should create jobs for them. For those that are not educated, they should be taught skills such as carpentry, metal fabrication and mechanics, just to mention a few.

Madam Speaker, we need community libraries in place for youths to utilise. The Government should build play parks for recreation to prevent mischief amongst the youths. Loans with flexible conditions should also be made available to enable youths come up with viable projects. The Government should also build recreation clubs for youths and retire old people in order …

Hon. Government Members: Sata!

Madam Speaker: Order!

Ms Kapata: … to fuse the youths because they are the future leaders.

Madam Speaker, on women empowerment, some of the women in Mandevu conduct trading activities on Cairo Road. You will find a poor woman vending oranges worth K10,000 from 0600 hours to 1800 hours, leaving children in the community unattended to. This has contributed to the rate of crimes such as rape in the case of children between the ages of two and sixteen. Young girls resort to prostitution at an early age. This has also contributed to the mushrooming of street kids.

Madam Speaker, I would like to urge the Government to come up with projects to empower women form clubs such as cooking and baking, mushroom growing behind their backyards, tailoring and tie and die of materials.

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Security (Mr Liato): Madam Speaker, I want to thank you very much for giving me this opportunity to add my voice in support of the very progressive and rich speech by His Excellency the President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC to this Parliament at the Official Opening of the First Session of the Tenth National Assembly.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: I wish to congratulate the Hon. Mr Speaker of this House, Madam Deputy Speaker, and the Deputy Chairman of Committees of the Whole House on their election to their respective positions. I am very confident that they will guide us competently throughout the coming five years.

Madam Speaker, let me start by congratulating His Excellency the President Mr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC on his very well deserved re-election as President of this great Republic. He worked very hard and he deserved to win.

I also want to take this opportunity to commend the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission of Zambia and the entire staff of the Commission for their leadership and commitment to duty that has given us a very transparent and successful election that we just had.

Madam Speaker, I want to start by saying that we have learnt many lessons from the just ended tripartite elections. One of them is that many people in the countryside, who mainly live on subsistence farming are very happy with this Government because it has done well in the area of agriculture.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: We have learnt that the Fertiliser Support Programme and the timely delivery of farming inputs have greatly assisted our people who responded by giving His Excellency the President and the MMD a massive ‘yes vote’ in the just ended elections.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: We have also learnt that the marketing policy of this Government is working well compared to the previous Administration that used to give farmers promissory notes for their produce. This Government is giving them cash and the people in the country are happy.

We have also learnt that Zambia is a large country. Therefore, Lusaka and Copperbelt Provinces cannot constitute the whole Zambia. I want to give free advice to those who want to aspire for leadership in future. They should not think that Zambia is all about the Copperbelt and Lusaka Provinces.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: They must make themselves popular in the other nine provinces.

We have also learnt that it is wrong and premature to celebrate when you hear results from only two or three provinces.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: You must always wait for a comprehensive outcome from the nine provinces for you to be conclusive about how you have performed in the elections. Otherwise, you will be celebrating and when the actual results are out, you get angry and become violent. You will also start making allegations that the elections have been rigged.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, we have also learnt that this Government has performed well in the education sector. Due to the Free Education Policy, the many Zambians who cannot afford school fees have responded well by giving us a ‘yes vote’.

We have also learnt in the previous elections that the medical health care programme has been well received by the electorate. We have also learnt that many people in the urban areas, mainly Lusaka and the Copperbelt, do not depend directly for their day-to-day lives on agriculture. We must find out what the problem is in these areas. We have noted that the problems on the Copperbelt and Lusaka Provinces are taxation, poor conditions at places of work, casualisation of labour and high unemployment levels.

Madam Speaker, I am glad to report that the President, in his address to this House, has responded well to these issues.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, it is important to note that the high unemployment levels in this country are not a creation of the New Deal Administration, but for the previous Administration whose leaders are mainly in the Opposition today.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Had it not been for the fact that we cannot debate ourselves in this House, I would have pointed fingers at some of the leaders who are on the other side (Opposition) who were responsible for creating high unemployment levels. These leaders pursued blind-privatisation programmes.


Madam Speaker: Order! The Chair would like to listen to the debate. Let us keep order. There is a lot of talking. The House has always been guided that if honourable Members want to consult, they should do so quietly. If you want to debate, wait for your turn.

The hon. Deputy Minister may continue.

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, I thank you for your guidance.

Madam, former leaders of Government pursued programmes of blind privatisation. Due to these programmes, many people were thrown onto the streets without benefits. They liquidated many companies, including the Zambia Airways which could have been recapitalised. Companies were closed down and people thrown onto the streets. This has resulted in many people with their children on the streets today. This has also contributed to the high unemployment levels.

Madam Speaker, policy on education changed in the previous Administration. This is when the laws were made that one could not start Grade 1 at a Government school unless he or she paid. Many of our people in the villages could not afford to pay.

Madam Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours.

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, before business was suspended, I was talking about the previous Administration which introduced fee-paying schools. Even Government schools became fee paying, making it difficult and impossible for parents in the rural areas to take their children to school. These, coupled with poor policies in agriculture, forced children to run away from the rural areas to urban areas. These are children who have saturated our cities today. They have become an army of unemployed youths.

Madam Speaker, it puzzles me that the same people who have created these conditions want to tell the same youths that they can offer them jobs if they came back to power and promise to fill their pockets with a lot of money in ninety days. How do you do that when you had ten years in Government and did not create jobs? The only thing they did was to create unemployment and made it impossible for the youths to go to school.

Madam Speaker, the poor economic management programmes are responsible for the hostile economic situation that we have found ourselves in today.

Madam, let me talk about the impression which is being created by our colleagues on your left (Opposition) that this Government has done nothing at all in making the situation better. To the contrary, this Government has done a lot in the last five years. President Mwanawasa and the MMD Government have provided leadership. Although many people sacrificed to insure that we reached the HIPC Completion Point, the fact is that there was good leadership.

We have achieved food security as a nation. Since President Mwanawasa came into office, we no longer run around buying food from neighbouring countries. We consume our home grown food. To have food security is an achievement. In the last five years, we have stabilised our currency. Our Kwacha is stable and has begun to gain value. When we stabilise the currency, we also stabilise prices of goods and services in the nation. This also makes it easier for business people to plan. These are achievements you cannot afford to ignore. Interest rates are no longer prohibitive and people can access loans from banks which they could not do in the previous Administration.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, apart from this, the financial markets have stabilised. Again, this is no mean achievement. People in the rural areas are happy because they can take their children to school. They are happy that they have something to eat and they are also happy that the policies of this Government can enable them go to the hospital and get treatment for free.

Hon. PF Members: Aah!

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, His Excellency the President and his Administration have created an environment in this country where job opportunities are now available.

Hon. PF Members: Aah!

Mr Liato: If you do not know what I am talking about, go to Kafue. Nitrogen Chemicals of Zambia was closed but, today, it is functioning. In Kafue again, the former KTZ which was closed in the previous Administration has now opened. It is actually called African Textiles Industry. In Solwezi, Kansanshi Mine has been opened. These are job opportunities which did not exist in the ten years of the previous Administration.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, in Kafue, Trade Kings Group of Companies is actually opening an industry which will employ over 6,000 people when it is fully operational.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, these are job opportunities that this Government is creating for its people.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, in his Address to this House, the President responded to many concerns of our people. It is pleasing to note that on page sixteen he said that his Government would review its tax policies.

Madam Speaker, His Excellency went on to ask the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning and I quote:

‘The hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning will make new tax policy pronouncements in the 2007 Budget Address which will deal with many concerns of our people.’ He further stated that ‘our ultimate objective is that Zambia should have a transparent, broad based and well-administered tax regime that is stable with lower taxes for everyone.’

Madam Speaker, this is a very encouraging statement coming from the Head of State.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: It also means that His Excellency the President is responding to the concerns of the people.

Madam Speaker, it is very clear that our hon. Colleagues want to attack fellow Members in this House such as Mr Mulongoti. Mr Mulongoti may just be responding to the position that you had earlier stated. A political Party President said that he was going to oppose all the policies this Government would try to implement. That is a very careless statement Madam. If Opposition Members are going to oppose every statement or every programme of this Government, it is better for them to be told that we own all the resources. It is right form us to tell them that we are going to run the programmes and it is right to tell them that we have the power in our hands.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: It is good to also tell them that it is them who will be the losers.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: You must know that the country is built on consensus and mutual understanding and co-operation.

If they refuse to co-operate with others, they will use power to run the State.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, I want to say that the ball is in the courts of the Opposition. Therefore, they must co-operate with the State. If we were in the Opposition, because we are decent citizens, we would co-operate with those in Government.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: After all, even the Bible says that leadership is from God. Therefore, we must co-operate with in leadership.

Madam Speaker, I want to wind up my debate by saying that we will still have elections in the future. I would like to take this opportunity to remind the electorate that next time we go for elections, they must remember not to vote for people with a history of bringing down people’s houses in townships.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Madam, you will remember the Misisi issue. I want to remind the electorate that they must look out for leaders who have a history of hacking people with machetes like what happened in Chawama.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, there was a by-election in 2000 in Chawama and a leader led a group of youths to hack people with machetes. We must look out for these leaders. People should not vote for leaders who cannot hold elections in their political parities.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: A party must be democratic.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: If you cannot exercise democracy in your party, how can you run the affairs of the State?

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: We do not want dictators. We can see that this person does not want to have elections, but we want to have him as Head of State so that next time he can cancel national elections.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Liato: Madam Speaker, party leaders who want to aspire for national leadership must first prove their worth from their political parties.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Madam Speaker, I want to tell Zambians to watch out for dictators.

I thank you, Madam.

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

Ms Masiye (Mufulira): Madam Speaker, I wish to thank and recognise the Lord God Almighty, Jehovah the most high for giving me not just the opportunity to stand here this afternoon, but also making my election to this august House possible notwithstanding the hurdles and pressures that go with such a challenge.

Madam Speaker, allow me to congratulate the Speaker and the Deputy Chairman of Committees of the House on their election to their esteemed positions.

To the Deputy Speaker, I say hats off for being the first female Speaker of this august House. Your election made the National Assembly of Zambia a pacesetter not just in the Continent of Africa, but also the developed world as well. The United States of America’s House of Representatives, House Democratic Leader, Nancy Pelosi is poised to become the Chamber’s first female Speaker. Congratulations Madam.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear

Ms Masiye: Madam Speaker, a saying in Bemba goes and I quote:

  ‘Ukutangila tekufika.’

Ms Masiye: This literally translated means starting off first does not entail arriving first. This means that it is not when you start, but when, if or how you finish that counts.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: It is therefore, my sincere hope and prayer that the hon. Deputy Speaker, will display an exemplary disposition as this will earn her the position of a role model not just for the female hon. Members of Parliament and hon. Ministers, but also the upcoming girl child.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: Madam Speaker, of the 150 elected hon. Members of Parliament, only twenty-two are women, representing 14.66 per cent. When the nominated hon. Members are included, the figure is rounded off to 15 per cent. To these women of valor, I say congratulations.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: I wish to take this opportunity to implore you to work hard and be exemplary so that we will not just be another statistic of female hon. Members, but also a force to reckon with.

Madam Speaker, a wise proverb says and I quote:

  ‘More n0oble is a graceful character than a graceful countenance.’

We should let our male folk realise that we are more than the trophy they have stereotyped us to.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: Madam Speaker, I now wish to thank the people of Mufulira Constituency for electing me as their representative instead of the other two male contenders. For the confidence placed in me, I pledge my allegiance. May the God of heaven help and bless the long neglected and dilapidated constituency through this representation.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: My thanks go to all those who worked tirelessly with me during the campaign. I also wish to acknowledge all those who gave me different forms of support, ranging from material to just words of encouragement and my son Nyambe for being supportive despite his tender age.  I also wish to acknowledge the support from other members of my family, the Constituency Executive, particularly the youth, women and many others too numerous to mention. The victory was indeed, ours even though the battle was the Lords.

Madam Speaker, our National Anthem has the following phrases in the respective stanzas:

 ‘Stand and sing of Zambia proud and free;’ and

 ‘Dignity and peace beneath Zambia’s sky’

Free we are, but not proud; and

Peace we have, but not dignified.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: The pride and dignity of many a Zambian today has remained in the beautiful melody of the anthem as their true pride and dignity has been stripped off them by poverty, hunger and disease.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: The listening MMD Government pays attention all right, but with a deaf ear as seen in their beautiful plans which are surrounded by immense inertia or lack of action.

Hon. PF Members: Hammer!

Ms Masiye: This is seen in their fire-fighting reaction instead of a proactive approach. The recent KCM saga is a typical example, and so are the many foreseen, but not provided for items in the Supplementary Budget. I do not know why these are called estimates because in most cases this is money already spent.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: Madam Speaker, allow me to draw your attention to the post-election events.

I wish to commend the people of Zambia for loving and choosing peace. Nonetheless, they should not be taken for granted as what was witnessed immediately after the 28th September Tripartite Elections may not always be contained.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: May I, at this juncture, applaud and commend the President of the Patriotic Front, Mr Michael Sata, …

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: … for calming the nation and for preserving peace at the most trying moment of his life. Such is not common among many, especially, African leaders.

He surely displayed a rare and noble trait of leadership and saved Zambia from an impending political genocide. Another Angola, Mozambique or even Congo could have been born.

However, I am appalled and disillusioned by some Members of this august House whom I had initially reckoned to be experienced politicians, by their courage to taunt and belittle an honourable statesman like Mr Sata.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: I refer to the maiden speeches of Hon. Mulongoti, Hon. Tetamashimba and many others.

Madam Speaker, it goes without saying to have ‘hats off’ for the late Mr Anderson Mazoka, past President of UPND posthumously, …

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: … for taking a similar stance together with the people who stood by him after the 2001 elections. A Shepard’s life is for the sheep and not vice versa. May His Soul Rest in Peace.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: It is my hope that his vision will not be compromised or manipulated by his own.

Even though physical violence was stopped, emotional distress and mental anguish still characterises the lives of many Zambians today.

Madam, may I now shift your attention to the issue of national unity. In his Inaugural Speech on 3rd October, 2006 as well as the Speech for the Official Opening of the First Session of the Tenth National Assembly, the Republican President Mr Levy Mwanawasa called for national unity and reconciliation.

To my surprise, the Member of Parliament for Mulobezi, Hon. Mabenga, in his maiden speech literally divided the country into political zones

Hon. PF Members: Shame!

Ms Masiye: He hailed the areas that voted for the ruling MMD and assured them of development. I listened with dismay at the phrase ‘Copperbelt and Lusaka are not Zambia’ from my honourable Colleagues.

Hon. PF Members: Shame!

Ms Masiye: They speak the truth for If Copperbelt, Lusaka, Luapula and the Southern Provinces had been Zambia, particular attention would have been given to heed the cries of the population in these areas.

Mr Chimumbwa: Yes!

Ms Masiye: Madam Speaker, the sayings, ‘you cannot lose what you do not have’ and ‘what you do not know will not hurt you’ are also true of socio-economic development. The areas that voted for the MMD in most cases are those that have seen little or no development at all since independence.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: On the contrary, the areas along the line of rail that did not vote for the MMD were at one time the most developed socially and economically. The significant nose dive in the standards of these areas brought about the general outcry for change.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: Madam Speaker, I can liken this situation to a couple that has never had a child and another that had one child and that child died. The pain of childlessness is not the same albeit the similarity.

Madam, let not the Government be misled by these voting patterns as an indicator of popularity.

Mr Chimumbwa: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: Instead, it should be cautious as the rural areas may be a sleeping giant about to awaken or a volcano awaiting eruption.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!!

Ms Masiye: ‘One land and one nation is our cry.’

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: Madam Speaker, political diversity should not be viewed as a problem. It is a healthy scenario as long as we respect each other.

Mr Chimumbwa: Bulela!

Ms Masiye: Can you imagine every animal in the forest a lion and every bird an eagle? It is unfortunate that some view this diversity with suspicion.

Madam, I now wish to talk about the investors.

Mr Chimumbwa: Bulela, bulela!

Ms Masiye: While I appreciate the need for investors in Zambia, the need for investors with a human face cannot be over emphasised. With due respect to our Chinese co-operating partners who have just written off our debt of $211 million and are about to construct a stadium, allow me to refer to the Radio Phoenix news of 2nd November 2006 which monitored a BBC report in which African countries were cautioned about their relationship with China.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: It was reported that China was not just trading in essential goods and services with Sudan, but supplied them with arms too. This has perpetuated the war in the Dafur.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: Such co-operating partners should be handled with caution regardless of their generosity. Otherwise, we may be bound to pay the price someday.

Mr Kambwili: We have already paid the price!

Ms Masiye: In light of the above, I wish to implore the Ministry of Energy and Water Development to look beyond the east in their quest for an equity partner for INDENI.

Madam Speaker, the advent of the First Quantum Mine on the Mufulira Ndola Road has not just witnessed another phase of casual workers. The people of my constituency, some of whom have lived on this stretch of land for more than three generations have been forced out of their farming fields. Land has been taken away from the indigenous Zambians without any proper recourse in the form of worthwhile compensation.

Mr Kambwili: Umfwa!

Ms Masiye: Madam, may I now request the relevant ministries to urgently look into the plight of these people.

Other areas of concern in my constituency include poor water and sanitation, the worst hit being Kansuswa which has had no water supply for the last three years, and that is true.

Hon. PF Members: Shame!

Ms Masiye: I hope you are listening Malambo. Sorry, Madam Speaker, I have to address the Chair. Kamuchanga is second in line where this urban population does its laundry in the Kafue Stream. A spate of wells is a common sight, but these have witnessed losses of lives, as in some cases children have fallen into and perished in these wells.

Education, health, social welfare, etc are areas requiring urgent attention. If they were likened to a patient they would be admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

Mr Chimumbwa: Shame!

Ms Masiye: The two police camps namely; Sikalangwe and Kamuchanga are in a deplorable state. There is no water and electricity supply is erratic. The Sikalangwe Camp is the worst of the two with latrines which are totally broken down and households have to share toilets.

Hon. PF Members: Shame!

Ms Masiye: How demeaning and demotivating. The houses have not seen a coat of paint for time immemorial.

Hon. PF Members: Shame!

Ms Masiye: Madam, since Zambia is a Christian Nation, allow me to conclude my speech by making reference to the ancient book of law, the Bible and I quote from the Old Testament. I am using the New International Version, Obadiah 1: 12 – 16. By the way, there is only one Chapter in this book.

Verse 12 – ‘You should not look down on your brother in the day of his misfortune, nor rejoice over the people of Judah in the day of their destruction, nor boast so much in the day of their trouble.’
Verse 13 – ‘You should not match through the gates of my people in the day of their disaster, nor look down on them in their calamity in the day of their disaster, nor seize their wealth in the day of their disaster.’

Verse 14 – ‘You should not wait at the crossroads to cut down their fugitives nor handover their survivors who were their supporters in the days of their trouble.’

Verse 15 – ‘The day of the Lord is near for all nations, as you have done, it will be done to you, your deeds will return upon your own head.’

Hon. Patriotic Front Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Masiye: Verse 16 states, ‘Just as you drank on my holy hill, so all the nations will drink – continually; they will drink and drink and be as if they had never been.’

Madam Speaker, I hope this self-explanatory poetic quotation speaks the world to someone as it spoke to me. May this august House debate and deliberate objectively. May you guide the House, not just with a firm hand but also a fair conscious so we may all together serve the people of Zambia to whom we are servants and not masters diligently.

I thank you, Madam.

Hon. Patriotic Front Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

The Deputy Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Ms Siliya): Madam Speaker, I rise to add my voice to the many before me that have already commented on the Speech by His Excellency the President, Mr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC at the Official Opening of the First Session of the 10th National Assembly on 27th October, this year.

I also take this opportunity, Madam Speaker, to congratulate President Mwanawasa, SC on his re-election for a second term of office.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: My congratulations, Madam Speaker, also go to you as the first woman to ascend to the position of Deputy Speaker in Zambia. I am sure the re-election of the Deputy Chairperson of Committees of the Whole House is also a gesture of the confidence the House has in the capabilities of the hon. Member for Lundazi Central, Mr Lungu.

Madam Speaker, allow me also to congratulate the Speaker on his well-deserved election as Speaker of the House. I have no doubt that he will continue to lead this House to greater heights.

For the record, I would like to congratulate all the hon. Members of Parliament in the House who contested the just-ended Tripartite Elections as well as those who have had the privilege to be nominated by His Excellency the President, Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC. In closing my salutation, allow me, Madam Speaker, to extend special and heartfelt congratulations to all the female Members of Parliament from both sides of the House, because I know that if their campaigns were anything like mine, then they definitely had it tough in the field.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Madam Speaker, to those who did not make it this time around, I still take off my hat for them for having the courage to simply take part in these elections which were very competitive.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Madam Speaker, I would like to thank the people of Petauke Central for having confidence in my ability to represent them. It is my intention to represent them efficiently and effectively so that together, with the Government, we can deliver on some, if not all the campaign promises, particularly on the following:

On water, I would like to state that the water situation in Petauke Central is dire and I definitely intend to work closely with the line ministry on this issue to provide adequate water facilities to the people.

On agriculture, even though I appreciate the Government’s effort in supplying agricultural requirements on time, I believe that for us to actually reduce poverty in Petauke, we need to move them from the tradition of cultivating their fields with a hoe and provide them with drawn power. I actually propose to the Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives to have a Cattle Restocking Programme in place.

Petauke Central has four dams at the moment and it is important that more dams are constructed so that water is provided to livestock during the hot season.

On health centers, I would like to state that currently, Petauke Central has eight health centers, but these are inadequate. We need other health facilities such as ambulances.

 On feeder roads and bridges, there are currently four bridges that need immediate attention in Petauke Central and these are namely, Nyamasase which borders Petauke Central and Manjabantu. I hate to think what will happen when the rains actually come because the people in Manjabantu and part of Petauke Central will be cut off from the only health centre in Minga. Others are Musumbazi, Mvubwe and Chilimanyama.

Lastly, Madam Speaker, I would like to talk on an issue that I really have passion for and that is education. It is my intention to continue lobbying for more educational facilities to be built in Petauke. Currently, there are about sixty-one primary schools, community schools, basic schools and high schools. Particularly, Madam Speaker, I would like to continue lobbying for the education of the girl child.

Madam Speaker, it is my intention as the Member of Parliament for Petauke to work closely with the line ministries, bilateral and multilateral co-operating partners and Governmental and non Governmental Organisations to ensure that the lives of the people in Petauke Central are improved. I intend to use my term of office to campaign in Petauke for the re-discovery of family values and promotion of responsible behaviour. It is saddening that at the moment, a lot of young people spend their time on vices such as drug and alcohol abuse instead of engaging in productive activities.

There are indeed, many choices of activities that the young generation can make instead of engaging in drug and alcohol abuse. To minimise drug and alcohol abuse amongst the youth, I call upon the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Child Development, in partnership with the private sector, to urgently consider the provision of increased sports facilities in rural areas.

Madam Speaker, one Member of Parliament recently informed the House that economic jargons such as macro-economic stability, single digit inflation and so on do not make any sense to the man on the streets as he does not feed on statistics.

Mr Lubinda: Very good, tell Magande.

Ms Siliya: I agree with this. However, during my campaign this year, I was amazed at how very few people asked for money compared to when I was campaigning in 2001 to help them pay one bill or the other. I realised that it is because their basic needs may have been met, to a large extent, by the provision of free health services, free primary education by the New Deal Administration.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: Wachinja futi.


Ms Siliya: Madam Speaker, just for the record, I would like to remind hon. Members that I am actually talking about Petauke Central with which I am very familiar. Similarly, a subsidy on fertiliser, early distribution of agricultural inputs and good rains brought about the bumper harvest.

Madam Speaker, at one health centre I visited, I was informed that they witnessed a dramatic increase of 47 percent in patients accessing medical services when free health care was introduced in rural areas on 1st April this year.

I would like to commend the Government for the introduction of free ARVs in my constituency that greatly reduced the number of unnecessary deaths from HIV/AIDS. There are currently about 2000 people on ARVs in Petauke.

Madam Speaker, all the above have been made possible due to a stable macro economic environment that has resulted in the international community having confidence in the Zambian economy.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Consequently, the bilateral and multilateral co-operating partners responded by canceling Zambia’s outstanding debt, thereby providing savings for the Government to increase spending on social services such as free ARVs, improved health care delivery and free Basic Education, particularly in rural areas. As propounded by classical economists such as Ricardo and others, we can only share wealth and not poverty. I believe that my Government is on course to reduce the skew in wealth distribution in Zambia by providing an enabling environment for more wealth and job creation as that is the only avenue for equitable income distribution.

Madam Speaker, the challenge for Zambians now is to take advantage of this window of hope by being more enterprising, creative, hard working and committed to whatever income-generating activity they may be involved in. This is in line with the President’s Speech in which he alluded to the commercial, trade and industrial sectors as priority areas for growth in our country.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: I cannot emphasise more than the President on the role my ministry plays as a leading facilitator for wealth and job creation by providing an enabling environment for the private sector to flourish.

Hon. Government members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: As a new Deputy Minister, I will channel all my energies to deepening and enhancing co-operation between the New Deal Administration and all relevant stakeholders in ensuring the successful implementation of the following major programmes:

(a) The Private Development Initiative;

(b) Citizens Economic Empowerment;

(c) the Triangle of Hope Initiative;

(d) the India-Africa Conclave;

(e) the Forum on China-Africa Co-operation; and

(f) the on-going bilateral and multilateral negotiations.

Madam Speaker, through the Private Sector Development Reform Programme, the Government is working very hard to minimise administrative barriers to business entry and improve the investment climate for both domestic and foreign investors.

Similarly, the Government is alive to the fact that the majority of its population has not been integrated into the mainstream economic activities, hence, the enactment of the Citizens Economic Empowerment Bill by this House mid this year.

Madam Speaker, the Government and the President should be commended for coming up with the Citizens Economic Empowerment Act that will in turn establish a Citizens Economic Empowerment Fund to address problems associated with costly project financing which the majority of our people cannot afford.

Madam Speaker, this is not the time to be cynical, but to have hope. It is time for each one of us to take advantage of the stability that the Government has provided in the economy at macro level. It is time to ensure that the sacrifices of the past five years bear fruit. The private sector, particularly the young generation must rise to the challenge.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Madam Speaker, the great challenge to this House is to ensure that we follow the advice of the President on national unity. It is important that we do not forget that the time for electioneering is over and Zambians are in a hurry to develop. Development is, and must always be the agenda for all the members in the House.

As a new comer to this House, Madam Speaker, I look forward to gaining from the experience and wisdom of those who have been here way before me and namely, the right hon. Vernon Johnson Mwaanga …

Hon. Opposition Member: Ooh!

Ms Siliya: … when he was Member of Parliament for Roan on the Copperbelt, His Excellency the President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, and of course the others who are not in the House, such as hon. Dipak Patel and Hon. Dr Peter Machungwa …


Ms Siliya: …who informed us today that he was actually not the longest serving, but the most elected in his constituency. I cannot fail to mention hon. Ben Tetamashimba …

Hon. Opposition Members: Awe!

Ms Siliya: … and others such as hon. Edith Nawakwi, ….


Ms Siliya:  … hon. Mutale Nalumango, hon. Request Muntanga and many others. I am sure many new comers to this Parliament, like myself, will definitely learn something from these very able Members of Parliament.

Mr Lubinda: Na hon. Mpombo mukambe.

Ms Siliya: I thank you, Madam.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe (Choma): Madam Speaker, I would like to thank you so much for allowing me to contribute to the discussion on the Motion of Thanks to the Address by Excellency the President, Mr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC. I would like to congratulate you, Madam Speaker, and the Deputy Chairperson of Committees of the whole House on your election to your individual portfolios.

Madam Speaker, in the first place, I would like to salute my President, Mr Hakainde Hichilema for affording me this opportunity to come to this august House. May God the almighty greatly and richly bless him and protect him from his enemies.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: He is reserved for 2011 to improve the battered economy of this nation.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: Madam Speaker, let me now comment on what was in the President’s Speech on social sector and infrastructure of this nation.

Madam Speaker, in the whole world, Zambia is the only country where the educational system is divided into several components, which are lower basic, middle basic, upper basic, secondary and tertiary. In the other parts of the world, the education system is divided into three stages namely, primary, secondary and tertiary education. It is not necessary to subdivide basic education into three components.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: Madam Speaker, the concept of basic education was brought about because the MMD Government failed to build enough secondary schools to cope with the many primary schools.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: By turning primary schools into secondary schools, the Government has drastically and lamentably reduced the status of Grades 8 and 9. The other contributing factor is that most of the teachers teaching in these secondary schools are primary-trained and there are no learning facilities in libraries and laboratories for science lessons. This is why the standard of education in Zambia has gone down.

As a result, Madam Speaker, some Ministers, parastatal chiefs and rich people send their children to overseas schools, neglecting the education system which the MMD Government has destroyed.

Hon. Opposition Members: Quality.

Mr Chazangwe: Madam Speaker, a Zambian teacher is one of the poorest paid in the SADC region. This is why teachers run away to look for greener pastures in neighbouring countries. Consequently, Zambia has become a trainer of teachers while neighbouring countries enjoy their services.

Madam Speaker, the MMD Government must improve conditions of service for teachers by paying them better salaries and giving them better housing. The Government must give incentives in the form of hardship allowance for those in rural areas, such as Namuswa, Simwami and Siasikabole in Choma Constituency.

Mr Muntanga: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: Once this is done, Madam Speaker, teachers will never leave their motherland for greener pastures because Zambia will become a greener pasture. Currently, neighbouring countries are deliberately paying the Zambian teachers the allowances that we do not give them here in order to attract them.

Madam Speaker, it is pathetic to note that forty-two years of independence, Zambia should introduce and condone a trust society of education. I am referring to the public schools and the popular community schools that have mushroomed all over the country. This type of education is in the hands of NGOs. Most of the teachers in these schools are not only untrained, but are below Grade 12 level. The conditions of classrooms leave much to be desired, and yet the MMD Government is proud that they are offering free education from Grades 1 to 7.


Mr Chazangwe: Madam Speaker, are we going back to the colonial days where we had two types of education, European education and African education? In reality, we have education for the poor and for the rich.

Madam Speaker, I would like to strongly urge the MMD Government to take over all community schools with immediate effect, if possible within ninety days …

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Chazangwe: … if the “2015 Education for All” is to be meaningful.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: Madam Speaker, the Zambian people are not happy with the academic unrest that takes place at our two public universities. The academic unrest which makes a four-year degree programme last seven years is caused by a lack of political will by the MMD Government to address the problems the two universities are facing.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: The MMD Government must take serious measures to improve the situation at the two public universities. At both universities, one will never find a son or daughter of a cabinet or deputy minister or some rich Zambian. They send their children abroad instead. That is why even if the police officers were to use live bullets on the rioting students, no cabinet minister would be moved because there is no ownership.


Mr Chazangwe: I can assure you, Madam Speaker, the only son or daughter of a high Government official is that of a District Commissioner, and yet most of these cabinet ministers and their deputies and rich Zambians benefited from the Free Education Policy from Sub A to university.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: Madam, I would like to comment on the Government’s decision to introduce free medical service for the rural areas, although they are only getting free consultancy and prescriptions. This is so, because there is no medicine in the clinics and hospitals. This makes the free medical service quite expensive because people have to buy drugs.

Madam Speaker, what surprises me is that while there are no medicines at the UTH pharmacy, a private pharmacy at the entrance of the UTH is fully stocked with the latest drugs and medicines. Why should the MMD Government fail to stock the pharmacy at the UTH with the latest drugs? Is it an indirect way of promoting the private pharmacy at the entrance of UTH.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: By the way, Madam, who is the owner of that pharmacy?


Hon. Opposition Members: Hammer!

Mr Chazangwe: Madam Speaker, what is called Choma General Hospital today was actually a white man’s tobacco barns. Renovations have been made to try and bring the infrastructure close to a modern hospital, but the structures are still not conducive for a hospital, just as one cannot turn prison infrastructure into a classroom.


Mr Chazangwe: Madam, this is demoralising the workers of the hospital. There is an urgent need to build a new hospital with modern facilities.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: The Central Statistical Office reveals that about 80 per cent of our people live under poor conditions and they do not eat well. It is because of this that people are losing their lives. They eat one or two meals per day. At times, people are said to be dying of AIDS when it is actually hunger.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: Madam Speaker, the only way we can reduce the levels of poverty in our country is by the Government coming up with deliberate programmes in agriculture to alleviate the hunger situation. During the UNIP regime, we were able to grow a lot of maize in this country because there was a political will to do this. In any case, hunger is a political issue because a hungry person is an angry person.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: Madam, I feel if agriculture is looked after well, Zambia would reclaim her good name. In Zambia, every province has its own comparative advantages. For example, in the Western Province there is a lot of water, fish, sand and the people grow cassava.


Mr Chazangwe: Madam Speaker, the Government should encourage and support programmes that support what people already have and know. The Southern Province is known for its culture of farming; growing maize and rearing cattle. Therefore, people in my constituency need animal restocking.

Madam, I would like to reject in strong terms, the present system of giving one little cow to twenty village headmen to share in several years. This is causing fights over one cow.


Mr Chazangwe: Madam Speaker, this is what my traditional cousin, Hon. Sikatana, was doing to cause fights in the Southern Province.

Cattle restocking is a system of the Agrazia Scheme where a herd of ten heifers and one bull is given to individual families to look after and pay through the offspring in five years. This was done by the UNIP Government and was very successful. I want the MMD Government to do exactly this in my constituency.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: Madam Speaker, a successful and effective agricultural system demands a good road network. The Government should look into this. For example, if you live in Namuswa and you want to go to Kalomo, you have to come to Choma, a round trip of 185 kilometres, and yet if you use the short cut through the bush, the distance is only 65 kilometres. The road from Choma to Masuku needs immediate attention. The other roads which need immediate attention are:

(a) Choma/Namwala Road

(b) Choma/Masuku Road

(c) Choma/Sikalongo Road

(d) Choma/Chikanta Road

(e) Choma/Siachitema Road

(f) Masuku/Sikolongo Road


Mr Chazangwe: Plus the Bottom Road.


Mr Chazangwe: Madam, I would like to acknowledge the effort that the Government is making in teaching the street children some social skills. However, some of these street children are too young to be taught any skills. What the Government needs to do is build infrastructure that is fit for both education and vocational training. The programme could be divided into an academic programme in the morning and socials skills in the afternoon. A six year old child needs literacy skills first before getting him or her to acquire mechanical and social skills.

Madam Speaker, these street children, if not looked after well now, will never allow anybody to govern this nation when they are street adults.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chazangwe: Madam, last but not the least, I wish to salute the people of Choma Central Constituency who worked so hard and sacrificed so much in order to get me to this august House. I thank them most sincerely and I should further assure them that as their servant, I will do whatever is within my ability to effectively fight on and make sure that development is taken to Choma Central Constituency.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

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

The Deputy Minister of Defence (Mr Akakandelwa): Madam Speaker, I feel honoured and privileged to be given the opportunity to address this august House and all those tuned into Parliament radio in Lusaka, the surrounding areas and along the line of rail. This facility is a demonstration of the Government’s resolve to get Parliament closer to the people. The on-going effort to provide nationwide coverage by this Government is indeed, commendable.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Madam Speaker, may I join other previous speakers in congratulating you, the Speaker and the Deputy Chairperson of Committees of the Whole House on your election to your various offices unopposed. The fact that you were not challenged is a measure of trust and confidence this House has in you. Let me also take this opportunity to congratulate the President His Excellency Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, on his re-election as Republican President with a bigger mandate than the case was in 2001.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: This is a true demonstration of the confidence, trust and love that the majority Zambians have in their President. I salute Zambia for this show of political maturity.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: Madam Speaker, the Zambian people have given this Government the mandate to provide leadership for the next five years. We, therefore, expect all peace-loving citizens to recognise these covenants.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear! Hammer!

    Mr Akakandelwa: Allow me to congratulate His Honour the Vice-President on his nomination and subsequent appointment as Vice-President. Hon. Members, you too deserve my congratulations. I have a fair idea of what you must have gone through for you to be in this House. It was not easy. For that, I salute you.

Let me convey my special thanks to the people of Mangango Constituency, chiefs included, for the support by electing me Member of Parliament. I must also thank them for electing MMD councillors to complete the suit that we used to refer to during campaigns. To the people of Mangango, you have redeemed yourselves by identifying yourselves with the party in power. As Government, we shall work hard.

I would like to thank my party, the Movement for Multi-Party Democracy, for adopting me as a parliamentary candidate for the 28th September Tripartite Polls. This certainly made it much easier to win the contest. Lastly, but not the least, I would like to acknowledge all the support and goodwill from my family and friends.

Madam Speaker, let me now address myself to the President’s Speech. The speech by President Mwanawasa was extolled and lauded by eminent and well meaning members of the society and the representatives of international organisations. It was objective, thought provoking and inspiring. When one reads the speech, they are reminded of the contents of the MMD Manifesto and this, I believe, is by design.

The President’s Speech addressed the critical aspects of our livelihood as a nation. It was aligned to the challenges this nation is facing and most importantly, provides remedies both in the short term and long term as contained in the Fifth National Development Plan and the Vision 2030. This Government has performed well and evidence of success is before us all. It, therefore, deserves commendation. Those who appreciate statistical presentation will tell you that the macro-economic indicators of interest rates, inflation and exchange rates are as scientific as they are factual. They project a good future. Single digit inflation, stable exchange rates and lower and stable interest rates point to a performing economy only synonymous with good governance.

My uncle in the village who may not appreciate the economic jargon of macros and micros does attest to the fact that prices in the last two years or so have remained stable and in some cases registered reductions. The construction industry has registered and continues to enjoy unprecedented growth. These activities translate into job creation. These are some of the visible indicators of a performing and growing economy.

Only last week, Barclays Bank (Z) Ltd announced that it was going to open 100 branches nation wide before the end of next year. Is this not a measure of confidence by an international bank in the manner the Government is managing its affairs? By this move, Barclays Bank (Z) Ltd will be creating more jobs.

Zambia has registered large increases in foreign and local investment alone with more money already pledged this year than in the last four years combined. An amount of US$666 million was staked by companies wanting to do business from January to September this year against US$594 million raised for the period between 2002 and 2005. These investment pledges are largely because of a favourable regime brought about by the MMD Government which has introduced various incentives for investors during its tenure.

The bumper harvest and achievement of household and national food security are no mean achievements. They are a product of good agricultural policies the Government has put in place. With a favourable season, the increased subsidy by the Government of up to 60 per cent should translate into an even better harvest come next year.

New mines have been opened in the North-Western Province, a nickel mine in Mazabuka and hopefully oil and gas in Kabompo, Chavuma and the Zambezi Basin. Thousands of jobs have and will be created. Other positive spin offs are too well known.

Madam Speaker, the Government policy to promote and market tourism beyond Livingstone and other traditional tourist centres is again a testimony of the Government’s commitment to growing this important economic sector. The Kafue National Park is now a hive of activity because of the improved road network and generally good policies to attract investment. We can now seriously talk of the northern circuit as a tourist region. This is how it should be.

The Speech addressed issues of national reconciliation and unity as the nation settles down after the heated electioneering that was described by credible observers as free and fair for which the people of Zambia must be congratulated. The Speech also appeals to hon. Members to be non-partisan in dealing with developmental issues as we have a duty to serve Zambians regardless of their party affiliation. Other issues in good governance include serious consideration of issues raised during the election period, transparency and accountability when dealing with public affairs.

The Government recognises that youths are the future leaders of tomorrow and are determined to address the problems they are facing. The Government is providing a framework for addressing the challenges.

In 2003, the Zambian National Service, through the Ministry of Sport, Youth and Child Development was directed to embark on a youth empowerment programme. The programme was designed to empower the youth and turn them into productive citizens. The programme commenced in December, 2004 with an initial male intake of 220 trainees. Two hundred and three trainees successfully graduated in September, 2006 from the two training centres at Chiwoko and Kitwe. They specialised in agriculture, brick laying, carpentry and joinery, shoe making, tailoring and designing and automotive mechanics. The youths showed a remarkable transformation. Some are now in gainful employment while others are practicing their skills.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: The next intake of 750 youths shall include 200 females. The target is to recruit 2,000 per intake once the infrastructure is in place. The Zambia National Service has proven capacity in training citizens in various skills to contribute towards poverty alleviation by empowering the youths. In addition, K40 billion has been staked for various youth empowerment programmes throughout the country. This is, indeed, a demonstrable commitment and not mere rhetoric.

Madam Speaker, I personally find it relieving that the President’s Speech addresses most if not all developmental issues brought to my attention by the people of Mangango during the campaigns. As a Government, we are committed to addressing these challenges some of which are:

(a) Tarring of the Katunda/Lukulu/Watopa Road to the North-Western Province;

(b) connecting Mangango Mission to the national grid, a distance of less than 50 kilometres;

(c) provision of clean drinking water through the provision of boreholes to mitigate 
against the risk of waterborne diseases;

(d) construction of feeder roads to boost agricultural activities;

(e) construction of bridges;

(f) building more schools and teachers’ houses;

(g) provision of desks in schools;

(h) upgrading basic schools to middle basics;

(i) upgrading some middle basics to high schools;

(j) rehabilitating run down infrastructure;

(k) construction of dams;

(l) dredging canals for wet land farming; and

(m) establishing youth and women clubs.

Madam Speaker, I want to reiterate that it is the Government’s desire to take development to the rural areas. This policy was further underscored when His Excellency the President made a passionate appeal to the diplomatic community and co-operating partners on 9th October, 2006, at State House. The President requested their Excellencies to consider giving priority to rural areas when funding poverty alleviation and developmental programmes.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Akakandelwa: With the goodwill this Government is enjoying from our co-operating partners because of good governance, I have no doubt that this country will be supported in its developmental endeavours.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr C. Mulenga (Chinsali): Madam Speaker, let me start by congratulating the Speaker, and you, Madam Speaker, and the Deputy Chairman of Committees on your election to your respective positions.

Madam Speaker, I wish also to thank you for affording me this moment to present my maiden speech to this august House. Allow me to take this opportunity to express my most sincere and profound gratitude to the wonderful and great people of Chinsali for electing me as their Member of Parliament.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr C. Mulenga: Madam Speaker, the people of Chinsali are very special in that their gesture of electing me as their Member of Parliament is an honour of great inspiration and privilege that calls for diligence on my part. In this regard, I pledge to live up to their expectations.

Madam Speaker, I would be failing in my duties if I do not commend my action-oriented President, Mr Michael Chilufya Sata …

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr C. Mulenga: … and my party, Patriotic Front, for adopting me to contest the historical seat of Chinsali among many aspirants, who, also seemed capable of being servants of the people of Chinsali and Zambia as a whole.

Hon. PF Member: Nevers ena iyo!

Mr C. Mulenga: Madam Speaker, the people of Chinsali’s choice of supporting my party, the Patriotic Front, is a clear testimony of how fed up and tired they are of the empty promises made by the Ruling Party, MMD.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear! Harmer!

Mr C. Mulenga: They instead, understood the good policies of Patriotic Front better and in this vein, await deliverance.

Madam Speaker, Chinsali District, with a population of 152,122 is ranked as one of the least-developed districts in Zambia, yet it is famous throughout this country as the heart of Zambian politics.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr C. Mulenga: Chinsali has produced heroes on the Zambian political scene whose names shall not be easily erased from the memories of Zambians; and indeed, world history. I am proud and honoured to mention Mr Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe, posthumously, Dr Kenneth Kaunda, Mr Kapasa Makasa, Mama Lenshina Mulenga, Mr Malama Sokoni, posthumously, Professor Nkandu Luo, including the former Republican Vice-President, Dr Nevers Mumba, my uncle of whom I am proud and many more that I cannot afford to mention here, but whose contributions greatly developed this country and other countries in Africa like my father here, Major Celestino Chibamba.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr C. Mulenga: Madam Speaker, despite producing all these men and women, Chinsali has been denied development since independence. The joy, peace, freedom and harmony we are enjoying today originated from the sweat of these freedom fighters, some of whom died during Cha Cha Cha. Surely, something must be done for this great district.

Madam Speaker, all along, from the UNIP era to the MMD, the so called ‘Raw Deal respectively, the people of Chinsali had been supporting the ruling party. Sadly, no development has ever been taken to this rural district.

Hon. PF Members: Shame!

Mr C. Mulenga: It is shameful that forty-two years after independence, Chinsali District has no proper roads connecting to Kasama, the Provincial Headquarters in the Northern Province. Motorists are forced to cover a distance of about 500 kilometres via Mpika to get to Kasama instead of 150 kilometres if a direct route had been constructed. Therefore, there is great need to have a direct road to Kasama constructed as soon as possible to avert the unnecessary travelling expenses currently experienced by the people of Chinsali.

Furthermore, Chinsali cannot even afford to have a fuel pump and yet the biggest machine that pumps crude oil from Dar –Es- Salaam, Tanzania to Ndola through Tazama pipeline is in Chinsali.

Hon. PF Members: Shame!

Mr C. Mulenga: The people who manage the plant have never benefited anything from it. They instead, get expensive kerosene and other gases from either Isoka or Mpika which is about 170 kilometres away.

Madam Speaker, in the Presidential Speech of the First Session of the Tenth National Assembly, on 27th October, 2006, under Energy and Water, pages 31 and 32, the President talked about the establishment of a petroleum reserve and I quote:

‘The petroleum sub sector presents various challenges to the Government, given the aged infrastructure and the ever-increasing world oil prices. The Government is responding to this challenge, firstly, by the establishment of petroleum strategic reserves.’

Madam Speaker, I question this statement. You will recall that in 2005, we experienced an embarrassing situation as a nation when the whole country ran out of fuel because of not having adequate reserves.

Madam Speaker, Chinsali District and indeed, the Northern Province has been, for a long time, advocating for the establishment of an oil refinery at Kaloswe Tazama Pipe line as an alternative reserve to provide fuel to the Eastern, Northern and Luapula Provinces.

Madam Speaker, a serious Government would look at this project as an essential one. The embarrassment experienced in 2005 could have been avoided if the Government had taken the initiative to have petroleum reserves.

In addition, on page 19 of his Speech, the President talked about the construction of railway lines in various parts of the country, including Chipata to Mpika. Whilst I appreciate these as viable ventures and of importance to the nation, I still ask how many people in Zambia own a train. The answer is certainly, none. Not even the President himself.


Mr C. Mulenga: In my opinion, what needs to be prioritised are roads because even a person who owns a bicycle and not a car can use the road. The people of Chinsali need roads from Chama to Matumbo, Kasama to Chinsali and Luwingu via Chinsali to Isoka.

Madam Speaker, it is unfortunate that the President in his Speech did not even touch on any of these programmes for the district. This simply shows how neglected we are by the MMD Government. Therefore, I wish to appeal to the Government to look for serious investors to invest in the district.

Hon. Government Members: They will infest you.

Mr C. Mulenga: The land has a lot of potential for sugar cane growing, mining and tourism.

Madam Speaker, may I now, turn to the challenges affecting my constituency. Poverty cuts across culture, economic, political and even gender aspects of life. It is important to note that poverty is the biggest problem we have in this country. Therefore, this brings about misery to the people of Zambia because of the poor quality of life they lead. Poverty can be described as having insufficient access to food, education, health care, clean surroundings, sanitation and safe drinking water. In my constituency, there are a number of factors that lead to these problems.

Madam Speaker, the people of Chinsali continue to live a socially and economically- productive life by engaging in small-scale farming. They also engage in fishing on the Chambeshi r, Lubu, Manshya Rivers and the Nashinga Swamps. The main problem in the agricultural sub-sector is low productivity. It is important for this Government, therefore, to improve agriculture in the areas of fish farming and livestock production to enable the district attain food sufficiency and surplus for sale. The areas of emphasis should be:

(a) Improved extension services,

(b) promotion of out-grower schemes,

(c) good livestock management,

(d) formation of viable co-operatives,

(e) good road infrastructure,

(f) early delivery of farming inputs, and

(g) good crop marketing policies, to mention but a few.

Madam Speaker, I wish to mention that the health service delivery system has collapsed in the district. People prefer to go to witch doctors for treatment than hospitals because they do not have even a single panadol.

Madam Speaker, Chinsali District is served by fourteen health centres. There are two health posts and one district hospital. These health facilities have the following problems:

(a) Serious shortage of qualified health workers;

(b) poor state of health facilities;

(c) inadequate equipment and furniture; and

(d) inadequate transport and communication.

Madam, my appeal to the Government is to improve health service delivery to reduce morbidity and mortality from major health problems. The Government should also improve the staffing levels in health centres.

Madam Speaker, the state of education in Chinsali is deplorable. The infrastructure can be likened to a country that is just recovering from civil war. Teachers are getting cassava and millet from parents as their monthly payment.

Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!

Mr C. Mulenga: As if this is not enough, the Government has further subjected the parents to collecting sand and stones to mould bricks at their own cost for the construction and extension of classroom blocks. Lamentably, this Government has failed to fund these projects for over ten years now and the materials have gone to waste. What type of governance is this?

Madam Speaker, this Government believes in talking without acting. A formidable Government one that thinks before it talks.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr C. Mulenga: Madam, the Chinsali District Education Board has only two high schools against one hundred and one regular basic schools and fifty-two community schools. Most of the students at these high schools are from Lusaka and the Copperbelt, those whose parents can afford high school fees. To improve the standard of education in my constituency, the following suggestions must be considered by the Government:

(a) Provision of a framework for developing policies on education and decision making;

(b) provision of a relevant curriculum that is responsive to the needs of individuals;

(c) strengthening of strategies that encourage retention and progress of the girl child;

(d) provision of decent accommodation and good conditions of service for teachers, especially those in rural areas;

(e) provision of adequate classroom blocks for pupils;

(f) promotion of science and technology in schools; and

(g) provision of adequate teachers’ training through construction of a teacher training college at Mulakupikwa Centre.  This project was started by the Kaunda Government who spent time and money to plan for the college which was initially supposed to be a Police Training College and was later abandoned by the Chiluba Government.

Madam Speaker, in my constituency, the issue of water and sanitation is a serious one that requires immediate attention. Only about 2 per cent of households in the district use flash toilets while the rest use pit latrines, the bush and other methods of disposal of human waste.


Mr C. Mulenga: Madam Speaker, Chinsali District has inadequate water supply. Most of the people in the district walk long distances to access water from streams and unprotected shallow wells. The Chambeshi Water and Sewerage Company which manages the water affairs in Chinsali has no capacity to supply water to such a huge population.  There is a need to look for a reliable source of water from the nearest river.

Madam Speaker, in conclusion, I hope that the good policies contained in the Presidential Speech will not just end up on paper because the people of Zambia are anxiously awaiting their quick implementation. I say so because the MMD Government is slow and negligent. This is why Bikkilloni and Diffikkoti keep saying, “baba tiyeni tika bauze ba President ku State House.”


Mr C. Mulenga: This means that they want to go and tell the President about the issues affecting us. This is because they know very well that if the President is not reminded, the MMD Government would not perform.

Madam, it is time the MMD Government started sorting out problems affecting the nation as we have heard from some quarters. Once again, I thank you Madam Speaker and all members of the House for your attention during my presentation. Above all, I thank my God for his everlasting love and care for us all.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.{mospagebreak}

The Deputy Minister of Community Development and Social Services (Mr Muchima): Madam Speaker, I thank you for according me the opportunity to give my maiden speech today. I wish to congratulate the Speaker on his re-election as Speaker for the period of this Assembly.

Hon. Government Members: Hammer!

Mr Muchima: I will also extend my congratulations to you, Madam Deputy Speaker …


Madam Speaker: Order! Use the microphone please.

Mr Muchima: Madam, I thought my voice was high enough to be heard without the microphone. I was saying that I also extend my congratulations to you, Madam Speaker and the Deputy Chairperson for Committees on your elections respectively.

Madam Speaker, allow me to comment on our collective responsibility as hon. Members of Parliament to the people of Zambia.

Madam Speaker, I stand as one among the many in this House who have been charged with the responsibility of developing our respective constituencies and the nation as a whole. The people out there expect quality service, care and accountability from us.

Mr Sichilima: Hammer!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I believe the people who placed us in these positions of authority are not interested in seeing us oppose the Government’s decisions and policies, but fostering development as pledged during our campaigns.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: I am also convinced that the campaign was based on providing quality leadership of a high integrity and not to the contrary.

Mr Sichilima:  Hear, hear! Hammer!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, this country needs men and women who take up challenges in the interest of the nation. When you listen to maiden speeches delivered here, one concludes that others are well intended for the good of the nation whilst others are ill intended, driven by selfish motives and their agenda is to oppose the Government policies as directed by their leaders.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

 Mr Muchima: Such cannot see beyond their sponsors.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, it is also gratifying to note that experience is the best teacher. When one listens to contributions from the old hon. Members in this House, there is no question about the vast knowledge and sound leadership offered, hence the reason for their re-election to this House. For this I congratulate them.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, it is no merit of ours that we formed Government, but the confidence of the majority of the Zambians that placed us in these positions we now hold and we are grateful to them for this.

We run the offices on behalf of the Zambian people irrespective of colour, race tribe or political affiliation and not MMD officials and cadres alone. If one perceives us as leaders for the MMD alone, they are in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Rather our concerted ideal as MMD is to co-exist with the Opposition and deliver that which we promised to the people of Zambia under the leadership of the State President, Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC.

Mr Sichilima: State Counsel!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, bearing in mind that which is approved from Parliament caters for every one, with Government merely as an implementer, let us join forces and work together to deliver our given mandate.

Madam Speaker, for the next five years, we have been assigned the responsibility to delivery to all Zambians on the boat or on the land.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I wish to urge ourselves to take a keen interest in understanding how the Government is run in relation to revenue and expenditure. One need not be an economist or an accountant to understand this. A responsible domestic house is a clear example of how the country’s economy operates.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, the country depends on taxes and donor money for its day to pay operations. If the taxes and donor funds collected are insufficient for the Government’s operations, the only other alternative for the Government is to borrow. In most instances, this borrowing has conditionalities attached which if not checked properly, lead to serious economic problems. It is therefore, wise for us to know our revenue limits before embarking on any expenditures and exciting the innocent people for self motives.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, with this in mind, one needs to prioritise their spending.  The needs of the country are enormous, but depend on limited resources. We ought to ensure that as politicians, the issues we raise are pertinent to the wellbeing of the Zambian people. However, we should not forget that when we talk of constructing roads in Mwinilunga, schools in Mwense, clinics in Monze and the welfare of street kids, all these depend on the same pool of the country’s total revenue.

Mr Sichilima: Hammer, hon. Minister!

Mr Muchima: The question remains, do we have adequate resources to meet all our expectations? The answer of course, is no. Five years will pass, Madam, we shall not fully meet them all. This being the case, one needs to be reasonable and considerate.

Madam Speaker, I find Hon. Matongo, Hachipuka and others already applying themselves to this noble cause of serving the people while appreciating the Government’s economic dilemma.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: They use their experience gained from this House to the benefit of us all in the nation. I also recognise the contributions of young Hon. Hamududu as being in the right direction.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, let us promise people out there what is achievable within the limits of our revenue though the ideal situation would be to meet them all in all the constituencies.  Unfortunately, only hard working hon. Members whether in Government or not will live to the expectations of the people.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, allow me to go back to my masters in Mwinilunga.

Madam speaker, I am truly grateful to the people of Mwinilunga who supported the MMD and my candidature in the just ended Tripartite Elections held on 28th September, 2006.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear1

Mr Muchima:  My gratitude also extends to the people of Mwinilunga West who turned in masses to give me and my President a vote. When I say my President you know who I mean.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I was elected to stand against a formidable UPND Vice-President fielded by UDA who I defeated lamentably.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I hope next time they will consider a candidate of a higher position to compete with me in upcoming political races.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, may I congratulate the two Opposition Presidents present in this House, Hon. Ben Mwila and Sakwiba Sikota on their courageous move to forgo their presidential seats and contest parliamentary seats in the just ended elections and emerging victorious.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Sichilima: Kokolapo apo!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, let me dwell a little on my President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC. He is not only a mature lawyer, but a visionary leader with a passionate belief in the liberty of the North-Western Province. Without him, the North-Western Province would not be what it is today. I must admit, his dream has come true and he will always remain a hero of the people of the North-Western Province who we shall cherish all times.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: My brother, Hon. Kakoma on the other side is no exception to this.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

 Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, the North-Western Province is now proud and free.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Madam Speaker, allow me to comment on the achievements in the North-Western Province during the term of Levy Mwanawasa as President of the Republic of Zambia.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Madam Speaker, the legacy that shall remain in the North-Western Province hinges on the following three major achievements:

(a) The opening of the two great mines;

(b) the appointments of four Cabinet Ministers in his Cabinet; and

(c) his endless desire to do more for the people of the province.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I am sure even as he considers appointments in other portfolios, the people of North-Western Province shall greatly benefit. For this, the people shall remain grateful because he is a great man to our society.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, President Mwanawasa, SC has played a pivotal role in initiating development in the North-Western Province. What now remains is for private investors to augment these efforts.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, most of the development we evidently see on the Copperbelt was brought by the mines. This ought to be replicated in the North-Western Province with the opening of the mines. The province needs massive infrastructure development. The M-8 Road needs to be completed, districts connected to the National Grid, we need good hospitals, schools and social amenities. These should be royalties paid in kind to the North-Western Province as a whole.

Madam Speaker, the President promised the people of Mwinilunga two generators. I am glad to report that these were delivered and are operational, …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: … except that the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO) is not living up to the desired expectations of the people, as there are constant power disruptions. These have been due to the erratic supply of diesel and service components, consequently affecting the supply of water in the district. The power outages have further compounded the disruptions in the operations of key institutions such as hospitals, schools and the trade institute. It is my appeal to the ZESCO management to improve their operations.


Mr Muchima: At the moment, the district has had no power for the past one week or more with very little remorse from ZESCO management. These are the issues we are charged with as Members of Parliament to speak on for the people and act for them. The MMD Government wants to be associated with hard work not failure.

May I propose here that, as a measure to overcome this over expenditure by ZESCO in running a diesel power plant, it is prudent to either connect the district to the National Grid through Lumwana East, or indeed join hands with the Kaleni Hydro Project in Kaleni to ease the suffering of the people.

Madam Speaker, may I emphasise on the Hydro Project at Kaleni in Mwinilunga District. The Kaleni Hydro Project was a donation by missionaries to the people of Mwinilunga. This project requires Government’s input for it to be completed on schedule. The project requires some substantial funding to acquire an additional turbine and line poles to connect various parts of the rural areas and the township. Once the project is completed, it will provide a source of power for the Kaleni Mission Hospital and the people in the vicinity.


Mr Muchima: This will be a milestone in the development of the rural areas.

The project has already benefited K100 million through the Rural Electrification Programme. This funding went a long way, but was not sufficient for the completion of the project.

Madam Speaker, ZESCO would make a huge saving if Mwinilunga was connected to hydro power supply in the soonest possible time. The two options of connecting Mwinilunga to hydro power supply from Kaleni or the National Grid through Lumwana East Mine stand to benefit the rural people of Mwinilunga in a large way.

Madam, a lot of investors have indicated willingness to invest in Mwinilunga, but erratic supply of power is a major set back. Mwinilunga is blessed with rich natural resources that include rivers, rich soils and minerals that could be utilised in the development of the country once exploited fully. However, as long as the current power outages persist, major investment to the area shall remain a pipe dream, bearing in mind also the vast untapped development potential that lies in the district by virtue of its strategic position bordering the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Angola.

Mr Sichilima: Hammer!

Mr Muchima: On the road infrastructure, I wish to report that the Mwinilunga/Jimbe Road has been graded up to the border with Angola and work on the Mwinilunga/Manyinga Road is progressing well. It is the hope of the people of Mwinilunga that the road leading to the border with Angola is tarred. During the rainy season the road becomes impassable.

Madam Speaker, most of the road works being carried out in the district are greatly appreciated. However, the major concern is the quality of works carried out, as most of the roads have no drainages. As you are aware, the district lies in a high rainfall zone and roads without proper drainages easily get damaged.

The road between Mwinilunga and Solwezi is one such road that requires serious immediate attention. The current contractor on site mending the potholes has relaxed and has made very little progress in completing the works on the 283 kilometer stretch of road. The people of Mwinilunga cannot wait any longer for the road to be maintained or indeed resurfaced.

Madam, this is the same road that leads to Lumwana Mine, hence the need to make it a priority.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: On general education, the Government has supported the idea of community schools in the area. Many of the schools have been upgraded to middle basic school and require a lot of money. However, the Government is seriously looking into each one of them. The schools are prioritised on merit.

Madam Speaker, flexibility allowing, these community schools are bound to benefit from the recently announced distribution of teachers to provinces. The schools should merit the same status as Government schools except that they are established through community initiatives.

Madam Speaker, on higher education, the people of Mwinilunga thank the Government for opening a trade school in the district.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: The school is providing the needed skills for us in the area.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: The teachers need to be put back on the Government payroll as the grants are not sufficient for both school administration and salaries. Like councils in rural areas, the expansion base is limited for them to raise the expected money to run these institutions effectively and efficiently. The idea of boards is welcome, but in some cases, they require comprehensive review. The boards in towns have an advantage over rural boards because of their expanded capacity to raise the needed resources. Those in their infancy stage require care and development.

Mr Sichilima: Hammer!

Mr Muchima: On the discovery of oil and gas, I wish to commend the Minister of Mines and Minerals Development for the initiative to carry out mineral exploration in the North-Western Province.

Madam Speaker, the exploration being carried out in the North-Western Province should be encouraged whether there are tangible results or not. As was the case with Kansanshi Mine which at one point was abandoned on the basis of being uneconomical, today, continued research has proved them wrong.

Madam, on health, the Government has done a lot in this area. Most clinics have been built through self help projects and are receiving money for upgrading whilst others have been upgraded. The officials in this sector are doing very well and need our continued support.

Kaleni Nursing School, which has been on the tables for some time will soon reopen and the Government is doing everything possible to resolve some of the issues which were hindering progress.

Madam Speaker, those working in rural areas need incentives that will compensate their sacrifice to serve in these areas which are usually shunned by their counterparts in urban areas. This could be achieved through the provision of additional allowances, opportunities to train further, promotions and empowerment through loans.

It is time to make rural areas attractive because that is where the vote and money is.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, on tourism, I wish to say that the MMD Government has taken the initiative …


Mr Muchima: Madam, we thank the Government for the initiative it has taken to restructure at the source …


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


(Debate adjourned)



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

Question put and agreed to.


The House adjourned at 1815 hours until 1430 hours on Wednesday, 15th November, 2006.