Debates- Thursday, 2nd November, 2006

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Thursday, 2nd November, 2006

The House met at 1430 hours


[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]












(Debate resumed)

Mr Sejani (Mapatizya): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank you for giving me this opportunity to join several Members of this House who have already contributed their debates on the President’s Address.

Mr Speaker, to start with, let me congratulate you on your re-election to that Chair. I am very confident that we will continue to benefit from your experience as we go about our business of representing our people during this Tenth National Assembly. I also congratulate the Deputy Speaker on her ground-breaking election to that position. She made history because she is the first woman to occupy that position. The nation will be waiting with great anticipation to see how she executes her responsibilities. I have no doubt that Madam Nalumango will make the House and the whole country proud. She will not only make the female gender, but also the entire country proud.

Sir, I cannot forget to congratulate the hon. Member of Parliament for Lundazi on his election to the position of Deputy Chairman of the Committee of the Whole House. He is the man I have come to admire for his steadfastness and patience as he executes his duties. I do not doubt that we are in safe hands.

Let me also salute the people of Mapatizya for bringing me back to this House the fourth time. I am permanently indebted to them. I hope I will live and work to be worthy of this enduring demonstration of confidence and trust.

Mr Speaker, let me salute the leadership of the United Democratic Alliance for finding me worthy of being adopted on their ticket in Mapatizya. I am, indeed, very grateful. I cannot do justice to this subject without paying special tribute to the work that was done by the late Anderson Kambela Mazoka together with his colleagues, the President of the United National Independence Party, Mr Tilyenji Kaunda, and President of the Forum for Democracy and Development, Ms Edith Nawakwi, in trying to respond to the cries of the people of Zambia for a united Opposition.

Sir, it is sad that Mr Mazoka had to leave us at a time that he did. If it were our wish, we would have had him leave a little longer so that he helps to consolidate the alliance, but, alas, death strikes without notice and it did. It, in the process, takes away both very good people and bad people. It also takes away the people we love and those we may not love. May the Soul of the late Anderson Kambela Mazoka Rest In Peace. I am sure we shall meet some day. This is the route we shall all take, except on different dates.

Mr Speaker, let me thank his successors for his fortitude during those trying moments. I think that Mr Hakainde Hichilema has managed to scale heights in such a very short period of time that very few politicians can boast of. He has made his mark. I think Mr Hakainde Hichilema is a rising star on the Zambian political scene.

Hon. UDA Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Sejani: This nation will watch with interest how this versatile, dynamic and sober young politician is going to engage in his activities. The nation can have a lot of hope in him.

Mr Speaker, we cannot forget to commend the people of Zambia for their maturity in the way they behaved before, during and after the tripartite elections even when they had various grievances in certain areas. They kept the peace and chose civil ways of expressing their grievances. It shows that Zambians are mature and our democracy is maturing. It is, therefore, absolutely important that we also try to meet the people of Zambia half way. It is also time for the Government to deal with issues that give rise to grumblings every after election. It is extremely important that we address the issues regarding the Constitution. It is a matter that we cannot continue to postpone indefinitely.

Mr Speaker, if the President is going to leave a legacy, as I understand he is going to, it is important that the Constitution is resolved in this second term of his office. We wasted a lot of time arguing and debating the Constitution during the first term of his administration. It will be remembered that, at the time, all debates and resolutions of this very important matter were always referred to this last term. Therefore, we must resolve this matter resolutely.

I, therefore, would like to urge His Excellency President Mwanawasa to leave behind a definable, measurable and incontestable legacy at the end of his term. I know that he has said something about a legacy on page 4 of his address. It reads:

"Mr Speaker, as I said in my Inauguration Speech, I would like to leave behind a legacy of the rule of law, self-sufficiency in food production, increased employment, economic empowerment and stability in our socio-economic policies."

Mr Speaker, this is very good. These legacies are always permanently contestable because they are not measurable. For example, he can leave behind a legacy of the rule of law, but somebody will say, in that particular instance, the law was ignored. It was not followed. Somebody can say they want to leave behind a legacy of increased employment, but statistics are always contestable. You can always contest statistics, but a constitution which is produced by the people through their forum, the Constituent Assembly is a matter that cannot be contested. Therefore, I would urge the President to leave behind a legacy that no one will contest because he has an opportunity to do so.

Mr Speaker, it brings me to the question of President’s Addresses. I would like to say something about President’s Addresses. In my opinion, President’s Addresses are supposed to achieve one or two things. It is supposed to be a declaration of intention. Therefore, if the address is given by a returning or a continuing President, it is not supposed to be only a declaration of intention, but also a progress report. I would like to encourage writers of President’s Addresses to read previous speeches that Presidents have given so that speeches continue to be relevant and connected, and not divorced from each other.

Sir, I would like to give an example of the first address that the President gave in 2002 on the Floor of this House when he was declaring the intentions of his administration. In that address, a number of important promises were made to the people of Zambia. I would have wished to see that, every time, the President returns to this House to deliver a speech, there was reference to the landmark promises so that we can all develop together as a nation. Alas, that seems not to be the case.

I can give a presentation of promises that were made by the President in 2002, which have been completely ignored in his subsequent speeches such that, every time, we seem to be dealing with new promises. We need consistency and accountability, and we need these speeches to be reporting progress that we are making as a nation.

For example, in 2002, the President promised this country that a Crop Marketing Agency to take care of the marketing problems the farmers are faced with. To date, this issue has not been adequately addressed. Our farmers still find a good number of problems in finding markets for their produce. Yes, we may assist them with inputs, but, at the end of the day, the farming community has to sell their produce in order to put money in their pocket. This issue is still outstanding. It, therefore, needs to be dealt with.

Mr Speaker, in the same spirit, the President talked about setting up an Irrigation Task Force to raise US $13.7 million by March, 2004. This is November, 2006, and yet, this fund has not been set up. We need to revisit the promises that we made. We made a promise to the Zambian workers that we were going to improve the conditions of service during our first mandate. To date, there are serious grumblings amongst the Zambian working class. The Zambian worker is the one who has borne the brunt of adjustment. The Zambian worker is the one who bore the brunt of the Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC). He is looking forward to a respite. When shall we given the Zambian worker breathing space and when will he benefit from the sacrifices he made to bring about the HIPC Completion Point?

Mr Speaker, we promised that we were going to employ new teachers in the rural areas way back in 2002. To date, this matter is still outstanding.

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Sejani: Mr Speaker, we need to ensure that the promises that we make on the Floor of this House and the promises that the Government makes are followed up so that our people know that we are doing something for them.

Mr Speaker, I am aware that I have little time left. Let me touch on the question of national unity and reconciliation that the President was talking about.

Indeed, to talk about national unity and reconciliation is a very noble thing, indeed, and we welcome this declaration by the President. However, to achieve national unity, we need to accept the fact that Zambia is a democratic State. Zambians subscribe to different political persuasions, and we must accept this fact. Inspite of that reality, we still remain Zambians. We belong to different political parties. Therefore, it will not help, in the agony of the moment, if we threatened lack of development to the areas that may have not voted for us. This position undermines the lofty declarations that the President has been making. I would like us to move a step higher and recognise the fact that even if we belong to different political parties, this is our country and we are all tax payers. Therefore, we are supposed to benefit from Government programmes. That way, we will be able to stand up ‘and sing of Zambia proud and free’, and that, indeed, Zambia is a ‘land of joy’ and we are going to work truly ‘in unity’.

Mr Speaker, once again, I would like to thank you for giving me this brief opportunity to make my contribution to the President’s Address. We have an opportunity to leave lasting legacies. Legacies for which we are going to be remembered. I wish to urge the President to leave this country with a people-driven constitution. I am sure that once he does that, he will not be forgotten.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda (Kabwata): Mr Speaker, glory be to God because in His infinite wisdom, He bestowed upon me the rare honour to, yet again, be amongst those to whom He has committed the interests of Zambians.

Mr Sikota: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: My indebtedness to the noble people of Kabwata for their overwhelming confidence …

Mr Mtonga: GBM!

Mr Lubinda: … and trust in my representing them is immeasurable.

Mr Mtonga: Saziba chizungu!


Mr Lubinda: My allegiance shall always be to them. Further gratitude is due to all the gallant women, men and youths who mounted a vigorous campaign for Mr Micheal Chilufya Sata, the five Patriotic Front (PF) councillors and I.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: I am nostalgic of the sweet voices of the little children who sung supportively wherever we went during the campaign. Theirs were a heavenly premonition when they sung, ‘Zayello namba one’.


Mr Lubinda: Mr Speaker, of the 41,000 who cast their votes in Kabwata Constituency, and in a race that had four competitors, more than 25,000 voted for me. This is not a calling for rejoicing or celebration; instead, it is a powerful indication of the hope and expectations that people have of me. Having served during the previous National Assembly, I am aware how difficult it is for a Member of Parliament to deliver any meaningful development to the people. Nonetheless, my resolve is strengthened by the support and encouragement that I continue to receive from the people of Kabwata Constituency.

In pursuing their expectations, I shall be driven by my strong belief that life lived for oneself, and not for others, is not worth living.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: I, therefore, renew my pledge to serve them and the people of Zambia, in general, to the very best of my ability here in Parliament and elsewhere. This I intend to do with rejuvenated vigour and with patriotic valour.

Mr Speaker, I beg the indulgence of this House that when I debate, I shall do so on behalf of the 98,000 residents of Kabwata Constituency. Through them, I shall also speak on behalf of the more than 8 million Zambians whose pride of being Zambians has been eroded over time. Therefore, when I am heard speaking with passion, please, bear with me because how else can one speak on behalf of the many suffering Zambians:

(a) the more than 100,000 children living on the streets and whose bed is the cold ground and rock their pillow, drainages and trenches their bedrooms;

(b) the more than 1 million orphans who shall never know a mother’s love;

(c) the retirees and retrenchees whose labours to develop this country is being rewarded with destitution, some of whom have ended up in their graves early;

(d) the woman who walks miles upon miles to fetch less than clean drinking water. She to whom child bearing is no longer a source of joy, but a life threatening exercise because of the many risks of death associated with child bearing due to the Government’s failure to prioritise maternal health care;

(e) the more than 1.6 million Zambians who are suffering from AIDS, many of whom shall never have access to anti-retroviral therapy;

(f) the many youths whose hope for a future is nipped in the bud because of the Government’s failure to provide them sufficient and suitable schooling and training;

(g) that university or college graduate whose faculties cannot be exploited because their rightful occupation has been taken away by foreigners under the guise of Foreign Direct Investment, and all because their Government has failed to transform the country’s abundant natural resources into wealth;

(h) the worker whose labour is compensated with close to slavery conditions because the Government has failed to enforce existing labour laws or to enact ones that protect labour largely on account of the Government’s respect for finance at the expense of local labour;

(i) that differently-abled woman, youth and man who lives a life worse than that of a refugee in their own motherland; and

(j) that land settler whose occupation of a piece of their ancestral land is threatened by the Government’s plans to allocate the land to the rich and powerful?

Mr Speaker, the vulnerable, the weak, the voiceless, the powerless, the dying are the ones on whose behalf I shall remain in this House for the next five years.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: May God give us the strength of heart to commit ourselves to the service of these many souls that die miserable and undignified, yet avoidable deaths in the absence of hope, love, care and compassion to live beyond oneself.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: Mr Speaker, as this is the start of the Tenth National Assembly, I would like to share my views only on one of the three fundamental governance issues which, in my view, affect all other human endeavour. I shall reserve specific sectors and projects to future debates.

Sir, my contention is that, for us to meet the expectations of the people, this House ought to continuously reinvigorate itself in consonance with the ever dynamic Zambian society. To this end, Parliament urgently needs fundamental reform. Reform not limited to what we have achieved thus far. I will borrow the counsel the President made in 2002 when he addressed Parliament.

‘If Parliament is to play an effective role in promoting democracy, transparency, good governance and the rule of law, then its procedures and practices which have changed very little in the past thirty-six years ought to modernise.’

With this in mind, it is my view that modernisation of Parliament calls for reforms on the fundamental parliamentary responsibilities and functions which should include:

(a) fulfilling the doctrine of separation of powers between the Executive and the Legislature. One sure way of doing so is establishing a parliamentary service commission which will liberate Parliament from the Executive;

(b) bringing other Government watch dog institutions such as the Auditor-General’s Office and Anti-Corruption Commission to work closely with the National Assembly. This will not only strengthen the institution of Parliament, but also the other institutions;

(c) ensuring that Parliament’s recommendations are adhered to by the Executive;

Parliament must be accorded greater possibility to, at the very least, censure public officers who continuously flout principles of good governance and accountability;

(d) introducing legislation that will compel the Executive to make official responses and actions on resolutions of Parliament;

Is it not, after all, this House through which the people of Zambia raise their concerns and aspirations?

(e) ensuring constitutional obligation to seek the approval of Parliament before contracting loans and grants

In the absence of constitutional obligation on the President to seek the approval of Parliament before contracting loans and grants, the Executive must be obliged to, at least, make full disclosure of such loans and grants. This will enable Parliament to perform its constitutional oversight role against the background of the immense sacrifices that were made by the ordinary Zambians during the periods of debt reform programmes;

(f). giving Parliament leeway to reprimand representatives of the Executive who perpetually play down the importance of questions, motions and other matters that are raised on the Floor of the House;

(g) sensitising the citizenry on the role and responsibilities of Members of Parliament.

This is an urgent necessity if we are to avoid the tendency of blaming Members of Parliament for lack of development in their constituencies. An enlightened society shall not fall prey to the rhetoric that unless a constituency elects a Member of Parliament from the ruling party, they shall not be included in Government programmes;

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: Mr Speaker,

(h) providing Members of Parliament the support that is required for them to fulfill their roles and responsibilities both at Parliament and in their constituencies;

(i) providing Members of Parliament equal status as their counterparts in neighbouring and other Commonwealth Parliamentary jurisdictions;

(j) providing officers of Parliament an environment that will enhance their performance in supporting Members of Parliament;

(k) ensuring political parties participate in allocating their Members to the various Committees of Parliament. All political parties are alternative Governments in their own right. The process I propose will allow them to allocate their Members to committees in which they consider them suitable as shadow ministers; and

(l) introducing a mechanism through which Members of the public and civil society can ensure that their Parliamentarians debate and vote in a manner that meets the expectations of the people, and not necessarily those of their sponsoring parties. Without such a provision, the people are at a loss regarding how and when they can positively influence the decisions of their elected representatives without the risk of being cited.

The above list is far from being conclusive. It is only an enumeration of my humble input in the Parliamentary Reform Programme that the President referred to in his address to both the 9th as well as the 10th National Assembly. Mr Speaker, in his Address to the First Session of the Ninth National Assembly on Friday, 22nd February 2002, the President suggested, among others, that offices be allocated to Members of Parliament through their local councils. The following year, the President during his Address to the Second Session of the Ninth National Assembly clarified the matter of rental payments for the offices when he said:

‘Parliament or hon. Members should make a reasonable and preferably predetermined contribution towards these facilities.’

However a scrutiny of the 2003 and subsequent National Budgets will show that there was no additional budgetary provision to the institution of Parliament or to Members of Parliament for this expenditure. The unfortunate result was that many Members shunned the offices and those, such as I, who secured them, met all the costs associated with running an office without any Government assistance.

On the other hand, owing again to limited funding, the Parliamentary Reform Programme has only managed to establish forty-five Constituency Offices countrywide so far. At this rate, it will be the year of our Lord 2022 by the time we establish the last of the 150 offices. Whichever Government officer is responsible for such dismal performance is not only making the President appear rhetorical, but also frustrating the needs of the people as were expressed by the President almost five years ago.

A major 2001 campaign issue has not ceased to beleaguer us from 2001 right through the 2006 elections. Fear of it continuing to attract controversy for more years to come linger in the minds of many. Initially, its proponents were accused of using it for their political mileage and now they are being called outright good for nothing troublemakers who are bent on disrupting peace, law and order. At this rate, it would not be shocking if they were charged with treason. At the risk of sounding disdainful, let me quote what the President had to say about the issue in his Address to the Second Session of the previous Assembly.

‘Mr Speaker, it is clear that the Constitution has serious conflicts, inconsistencies and lacunas. A good constitution is crucial to efforts to develop the nation. The Government is concerned and we want a constitution which reflects the feelings of the people, a constitution that will stand the test of time and which will spur us to more development.’

It can be discerned from the President’s analogy that there is a direct correlation between a good constitution and meaningful development. And if development is understood to encompass increasing access to portable water, ensuring square nutritious meals, and providing suitable schooling and quality medical health care, then in answer to the question asked by the President last week on whether a constitution will bring water and food to the people, I wish to reaffirm that a good constitution is a prerequisite to securing safe drinking water and food for the people.

It is the desire of many Zambians that they have a constitution that shall inspire them. We collectively owe them this much. While many countries have moved on with the 50 per cent plus one majority rule, we, in Zambia, are shamelessly stuck with the archaic ‘First-Past-the-Post’ system which is open to abuse and manipulation and is a source of electoral disputes and public disenchantment. Seeing that it is the people’s will, I shall continue to support the interventions of the Church, the civil society, the labour movement, the students movements and the many others in their pursuit of a people-driven constitution. We should remain conscious of the fact that ‘process protects content’. In this vein, we should not allow any man-made impediments of any sort to stand in the way of establishing a Constituent Assembly within the first twelve months of this 10th National Assembly.

We risk being left behind by the people who sent us here. To exemplify what I am saying, the Ecumenical Committee of Kabwata Constituency, desirous of making meaningful and representative contribution to a Constituent Assembly, organised themselves through a project called ‘The Grass is Singing’. Through the Grass is Singing Project, they have collected written reactions to the Mung’omba Draft Constitution from more than 10,000 residents. They are ready to continue, and I am proud to be associated with it. Therefore, I call upon each one of us to be geared for this process.

Mr Speaker, in the event of the 2007 Budget not providing for a Constituent Assembly, then for all of us who listen to the singing of the grass, the slogan throughout 2007 must be ‘2008 Budget – Constituent Assembly a Must’.

Mr Speaker, a major source of poverty, destitution and lack of development in Zambia is the top-heavy governance system that we have been employing since 1964. Time has come for us to forge ahead with the devolution of power from the centre.

Statements about returning some of these revenue sources to councils are forgotten even before the resonance of their pronouncements fade. As far as I am concerned, the New Deal’s Ten-Year Decentralisation Policy Implementation Plan is nothing, but an arrogant refusal to share authority and fiscal resources with the people. Was there any wonder, therefore, when the President doubted the capacity of councils to superintend over the provision of education when this is one of the aims of the Decentralisation Policy which his Cabinet adopted in 2002 and which he, himself, launched at a public function in 2004.

What part of giving more money to local authorities requires ten years of planning, if I may ask? Why should transferring human and financial resources from the centre to the districts take a decade? Why, surely should the decision to build a public toilet on Cairo Road or on Freedom Way be a preserve of a minister? Of course, it is not. With sufficient resources, councils shall provide more jobs than the Central Government can ever manage. This way, we shall be alleviating poverty and avoiding many diseases spread by poor public health, unsanitary water supply and infestation of rodents and pests that our people’s lives are closely associated with.

Mr Speaker, the hour has come to give power to the people, to let the people govern because Zambia is for all.

Hon. Patriotic Front Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: In conclusion, Mr Speaker, I thank the leadership of the ULP and that of the Patriotic Front for considering me worthy of an adoption as a Parliamentary candidate. Those people lifted me and offered me solace at a time when some members of my former party relegated me to near political orphanhood. I habour no bitterness in me because they are just, but a handful. The vast majority of the members, most of whom have been longer in the service of the party, than my antagonists, to date, still recognise the humble contributions I made towards the growth and the image of the party.

Only political analysts will tell whether the humiliation suffered by others and has contributed to the reduction of the number of my former beloved UPND Members in Parliament, which my dear uncle and friend Hon. Hachipuka lamented in his debate yesterday. Whatever the case, I leave both the machinations and actions that caused my tribulations as well as those of friends who took the role of my brother’s keeper for posterity to reward each of them according to their deeds.

My only prayer is that all political players in Zambia shall pursue one and only one interest of the Zambian people across ethnic and cultural diversities, and without regard to real or imaginary depths of the pockets of individuals.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: Through the past elections, the Zambian people have demonstrated their resolve to maintain their integrity by not sacrificing tested, and proven leadership in exchange for those who use wealth as a campaign tool.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: It is the noble duty of every Zambian politician to keep alive the legacy of the one man who had to pay through his life for his pursuit of a united, just and fair society. A society in which all of us, our children and their children after them …

Hon. Government Member: Taiwan.

Mr Lubinda: … could stand and sing proud and free! May the Soul of the founder of many politicians in this House such as Honourables Hachipuka, Matongo, Syakalima, Request Muntanga, Sakwiba Sikota, Alfreda Mwamba, Esther Banda, Mwenya Musenge and Ministers such as Hon. Mpombo, Hon. Liato, Hon. Shakafuswa and finally, but not the least, the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning Peter Ngandu Magande, ..

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lubinda: Mr Anderson Kambela Mazoka Rest In Eternal Peace because his vision for Zambia was cast beyond the party for which he loved so much and the party for which he died.

I thank you more sincerely for listening to me.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Chimbaka (Bahati): Mr Speaker, may I firstly pay tribute to you, Sir, for having been unanimously elected. Your election and that of the Deputy Speaker and the Chairperson of Committees is testimony that hon. Members in this House have confidence in your non-partisan stance. We are convinced that you are the right person for the Chair and pray that God blesses you abundantly.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Mr Speaker, I would like to pay tribute also to the people of Bahati Constituency for having unanimously elected me, this time around, as their true representative. I also would like to thank the MMD for having filed in a weaker candidate …


Mr Chimbaka: … who lost by a far margin. I say hats off MMD!


Mr Chimbaka: I would like to thank my President Mr Michael Sata and the entire PF leadership for having heeded the people’s choice of me as their rightful candidate. I would like to pledge to the people of Bahati Constituency and this august House that I shall do nothing, but equitably, fairly, and firmly represent the people of Bahati, Luapula Province and Zambia as a whole.

Mr Speaker, I wish to say that in Bahati in particular, agriculture is a disaster. Yes, people may boast that there is a bumper harvest. Yes, people may boast that the Chiawa Irrigation Scheme was successful, but for the people of Bahati, it has been a disaster of the worst kind. People in Bahati literally fail to access fertiliser because there is no formal employment at all. The depletion of fish has added to the misery of the people of Bahati and Luapula as a whole.

Therefore, when we talk of poverty and when the Central Statistical Office (CSO) talk of poverty, we know it is true because it is being felt in Bahati Constituency. According to the latest statistics, Mr Speaker, 80 per cent of the 99,000 the people of Bahati, according to projected de facto population, go with either one meal or two meals a day, failure to which sometimes a family may allow one group of people to have lunch and the rest supper. That is indicative of failure of agriculture in my constituency.

In order to develop, Mr Speaker, like the President has accepted in his address, yes, there is need to reflect seriously finding a way to cushion the impact of the people of Bahati and Luapula in particular. In those days, there was NAMBOARD, Co-operative Bank and Zambia Co-operative Federation Financial Services. These enabled people to get inputs and they were able to pay on harvesting. If this is the way the President is looking at things, the agriculture industry is going to flourish.

Now, if you visited the Mansa Farmers Training Centre, Mr Speaker, you would be surprised to find that it has been turned into a drinking place. Where is the leadership that be? It is very unfortunate, in the 21st Century, so to say. We are happy as PF that our President talked much about this and that the national President has accepted it in his address.

Mr Speaker, another eyesore that is very worrying is the education system. If I remember very well, …

Hon. Opposition Member: Hammer!

Mr Chimbaka: … in those days, any of you, hon. Members of Parliament, who went to Standard III …


Mr Chimbaka: … was able to read and write in standard I. Whoever went to school in those days was able to articulate in any language in Standard I. Whoever did Mathematics was able to calculate numbers efficiently and effectively. Today, the Grade 12 boys and girls lamentably fail even to write a composition. Where are we going? Forty-two years down the line, …


Mr Chimbaka: … a student at the University of Zambia literally fails …


Mr Chimbaka: … to write thesis. Forty-two years down the line, college students are literally failing to read books. It is embarrassing, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Opposition Member: Shame!

Mr Chimbaka: Something must be done. I mean everyone of us, hon. Members, must be concerned. We are killing ourselves. What is wrong with Zambians?


Mr Chimbaka: We are supposed to have our own indigenous education system right now.


Mr Chimbaka: Instead of experimenting, we should have our own indigenous education system.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: Mr Speaker, I fear that the realisation and attainment of Education For All in Zambia is a dream. In Bahati, in particular, there are thirty-three basic schools. Out these schools, only ten are adequately staffed. Twenty-three basic schools are inadequately staffed. It is either one head teacher or deputy head or a senior teacher running fifteen to ten classes. Shall we attain the Millenium Development Goals (MDG) in this way? No.

Mr Speaker, these thirty-three basic schools feed only one Government school, which is Mansa High School, which has the capacity of only 1,000 plus. This leaves 2,000 plus pupils without places in Grade Ten.

Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!

Mr Chimbaka: Mr Speaker, within Mansa Township, there is Kaole Basic School, a school that I headed for sometime. It has no electricity after forty-two years of independence, and yet there is a programme of rural electrification.

Sir, in the villages of Mansa, there are thousands of children who have attained school going age, but cannot access places in Grade one. I fear for education because it is really a disaster. Today, as I was listening to Radio Zambia, a director from the Ministry of Education, who is a very responsible person, announced that the Luapula Province has been given about 140 teachers. However, it is not the whole of Luapula. He should have specified that only Milenge District has been given 140 plus teachers. Our Government must be seriously committed to providing education.

Mr Speaker, it is very embarrassing for Zambia, which has been known for fighting for human rights since colonial days to find itself in such a state. There was the old lion mudala Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula. He was a nationalist who did not only fight for the independence of Zambia, but also for the liberty of Africans, Indians and Whites in Northern Rhodesia.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chimbaka: There was King Lewanika who was the first African Zambian to go to Britain. He went there to fight for the lives and liberties of the people of Zambian, the then Northern Rhodesia. There were Malawians and Tanzanians. We had the likes of Daudi Yambayamba. They died and grew old for the cause of the workers of the Republic of Zambia. There were, of course, a good number of people I cannot name here.

Now, if, for example, the mudala, Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula, resurrected from the dead, what would he say about the situation in Zambia? If Daudi Yambayamba resurrected to read about the slave conditions of workers at Amanita and about people having not been paid their dues, what would he say?

Mr Speaker, there is need to revisit the Laws of Zambia. If truly independence is what we are going to sing about, I feel it is the responsibility and obligation of this House, regardless of Party affiliation and tribe, to stand as a people of Zambia with a common view to liberate our people, to develop Zambia and take it to higher heights.

Sir, we need to look at the people and remember what we said, when and how we said it during the campaigns. If your conscious is telling you that you are here because you want to promote division, they will catch you. If you will not meet them on earth, you will meet them in heaven.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear! Or hell!


Mr Chimbaka: Yes, you are right. Or hell.

Mr Speaker, for Zambians, reconciliation is a must because we have one Zambia. At home, I am called bashikulu Twambo. Talking about tribe baffles me because, for me, Zambia is only one and our common tribe is Zambia. During lunch this afternoon, I was served by a lady called Namukonda Nyirenda. These tags of English, to me, do not matter, just like the tags of parties do not matter. We are entrusted by people for a common cause. This is a legislative institution in which we can liberate everybody out there. For those who want to promote tags, it is unfortunate for them because definitely, five years will come to an end and people are going to catch you. Definitely, you are going to be haunted by your own images. You can forget and be proud right now, but as we go back home, there will be drastic reminders that you cheated people. God will charge you fairly, but posterity, harshly.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kakoma (Zambezi West): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the Motion of Thanks to the President’s Address. First of all, I would like to join the rest of the hon. Members that have already congratulated you on your election as well as the Deputy Speaker and the Deputy Chairman of the Committees of the Whole House.

Sir, I am proud that we have in the Chair, a person of your experience and calibre. The Zambian Parliament is one of the most or well-established Parliament in this region and in the Commonwealth, many people look to the Zambian Parliament for guidance. We are fortunate that in the Chair, we have a person who is well respected throughout the Commonwealth.

Mr Speaker, I would like to pay special thanks to the people of Zambezi-West for electing me to Parliament to represent them again. Zambezi-West is now one of the richest constituencies in Zambia.


Mr Kakoma: Many people are already calling me Sheik Kakoma, the Sultan of Zambezi-West.


Mr Kakoma: Sir, I was elected against a popular wind of change that was sweeping through North-Western Province. From the old Members of Parliament that were here, there are only three of us who survived. That is, Hon. Tetamashimba, Hon. Kabinga Pande and I. However, from the Opposition, from the old hon. Members, I am the only one, Sir. This shows that the Member of Parliament representing the people of Zambezi-West is very tough.


Mr Kakoma: The whole Government machinery came to decampaign me, but the message was not accepted by the people. Basically, the message was not to vote for Mr Kakoma because he is an Opposition Member of Parliament. Secondly, that the people of Zambezi-West will not see development unless they vote for the ruling party.

Hon. UPND Members: Shame.

Mr Kakoma: I am glad that the people of Zambezi-West ignored that message because this is precisely what the Republican President has come to tell Parliament that every constituency is entitled to development regardless of the manner in which it voted. I am glad that the President has clearly laid the issue on the table. For those hon. Ministers that still hold the view that they cannot take development to constituencies that are held by Opposition hon. Members, if you see me going to State House, I am actually going to report you.


Mr Kakoma: I will report to the President that one of the hon. Ministers is disregarding his wish and undermining him by denying development to constituencies that are held by the Opposition.

Sir, let me take this opportunity to talk about the oil that is in Kabompo, Zambezi and Chavuma. This is a very serious matter. Whereas there are doubting Thomases regarding the availability of oil, those of us who come from North-Western Province know that, for a long time, the people have been saying that there is oil. In the Kasinji Plains, during the rainy season and the place is flooded, oil floats on top of the water. Even children scoop it. So, for us, there is no doubt that there is oil. However, for large-scale mining purposes, there is need to determine the quantities and feasibility of such an activity. Even if oil is not in large quantities, the Government should invite big companies from the United States of America to prospect and carry out a feasibility study. However, we heard from the MMD at their campaign in Kabompo that the Government has already found a foreigner to mine the oil.

Hon. UPND Members: Shame.

Mr Kakoma: This is scandalous. How do you find a foreign investor before you put in place the measures that the hon. Minister of Mines and Minerals Development was outlining the other day?

Hon. Opposition Member: Misango yabo.

Mr Kakoma: How do you find a foreign investor when the owners of the land have not been invited to participate in the oil mining and exploration? Last year, we passed the Citizenship Empowerment Act. Zambians are supposed to be given priority in the exploration and mining of this oil. I can assure you that the people of Zambezi-West will protect that oil jealously. If the Government is not going to involve the local people in the exploration and mining of this resource, I can assure you that when they bring this foreign investor to mine the oil, they will find the oil fields surrounded by villagers with spears, bows and arrows. We will ‘defend’ our source of wealth if we are not involved.


Mr Speaker: Order! The hon. Member for Zambezi-West should withdraw the reference to spears and bows. We call that aggression, but this is a House of peace.

Will he continue, please.

Mr Kakoma: Mr Speaker, I withdraw that statement. What I am merely saying is that there is need for local participation in the exploration and mining of oil. We want the wealth to benefit the Zambian people. We do not want to see what has happened in the mining sector where foreigners have benefited at the expense of Zambians. We have already learnt a lesson and we are not going to allow this to repeat itself in the oil industry. No.

Mr Speaker, His Excellency the President talked about reconciliation and the need for unity. I agree with that totally. There is need for reconciliation in this country, especially after the just-ended elections. However, how do we have reconciliations when the President himself and the ruling party have for a long time refused to talk to the opposition parties? How do we have reconciliation without dialogue? For the first time in the history of this country, we have a leadership that is refusing to talk. For the first time, we have a President that is refusing to talk to the other party presidents. During the time of the First Republican President, Dr. Kaunda, even during the One-Party State, they had time to talk to the emerging leaders in the MMD. We had a conference at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross. During Dr. Chiluba’s reign, he held inter-party talks. Since His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC. assumed power, he has not held any talks with other presidents of political parties. That is what is creating conflicts in this country because you cannot talk about dialogue and reconciliation without talking to each other. I have been involved as a member of the AMANI Forum in resolving conflicts in the Great Lakes Region. I have learnt that the only way you resolve conflicts is by talking to other leaders that are involved in the conflict. If you do not talk to each other, I can assure you that the unresolved conflicts can create even more conflicts. Therefore, I would like to advise the President of the Republic of Zambia that, in his pursuit for reconciliation, peace and unity, the starting point should be talking to the leaders of other parties so that we have a common approach to issues that are affecting the nation.

Sir, I was happy that the President recognised that the opposition parties raised a lot of issues during the campaign. These issues have touched the President’s heart and he would like to look into them and see whether or not they can be implemented. That is welcome because when you are a leader, you have to listen to the voices of the people. The issues that were raised in the Opposition are the reasons you performed badly as MMD in some areas. If you do not address those issues, I can assure you that the losses that were incurred in 2006 will be worse in 2011. We raised issues on unemployment, mining, health, education, agriculture and so on and if they are not addressed by this administration, you will basically be hardening the feelings of the people such that come 2011, you will be lucky to have even a small number of Members of Parliament representing the MMD in this House.

Mr Speaker, in the North-Western Province, for instance, the people have been crying for the tarring of the Mutanda/Chavuma Road and that became a rallying point. The Government went to promise the people that they were going to tar the road. The former Vice-President, Mr Lupando Mwape told the people of Chavuma to vote for the MMD because they were going to tar the Mutanda/Chavuma Road from Chavuma and the people believed him. However, if they are not going to do that, I can assure you that your victory there will be short lived. My brother who is now an hon. Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry, will only serve for one term because the people of Chavuma are very difficult. I know them because they are my brothers and sisters. Once you promise them, but do not deliver, they will show you the door.


Mr Kakoma: You are not going to manage misleading them again over the issue of the Mutanda/Chavuma Road.

Mr Speaker, it is not the question of just tarring the road in order to fulfill an election promise. With the wealth that is being discovered in the North-Western Province, especially in Chavuma, Kabompo and Zambezi, it would actually become an economically viable venture if the Mutanda/Chavuma Road were tarred.

Mr Speaker, how do we attract investment and all the economic activities to an area that lacks infrastructure such as electricity? It will be difficult to get to where the oil fields are situated. Those going there are going by plane such that even if we wanted to move equipment to the area, it would not be possible because there are no bridges. In Chavuma, there is an old pontoon that has not been working for the last one month and Zambezi District also has an old pontoon. Therefore, how do you transport equipment and other heavy machinery to explore or conduct mining activities without necessary infrastructure? It is next to impossible.

Mr Speaker, the people of the North-Western Province have given a chance to the ruling party this time around, but come 2011, it will be the reverse because if you do not deliver, all these people that were elected on the MMD ticket are going to lose.


Mr Kakoma: Some of them are very good people and as such, we want them to continue being in Parliament, but if you do not help them, they are going to lose and the UPND will reclaim all the seats that have gone to the MMD this time around.

Mr Speaker, the people of the North-Western Province, Zambezi in particular, have been urging this Government to look into their health issues. I heard the President lamenting that in their new policy of extending free medical services to rural areas, they have encountered challenges. It is true we are hiding under the good term of challenges. The policy has failed owing to the fact that the free medical services that have been extended to rural areas are nonexistent. At all the rural health facilities, the clinics and hospitals, there are no free medicines. People go there hoping to be given free medicines, but when they reach the hospitals the free medicines are not there.

Mrs Masebo: Meaning what?

Mr Kakoma: This means that even if you have extended free medical services to rural areas because you wanted to win the elections, it has not actually worked because you do not know how to implement the policy, where to get the medicines, where to find the doctors and nurses and you do not even have clinics in the rural areas where you are supposed to provide these free medicines. In other words, it is a mockery that while the Government policy is providing free medical services to rural areas, the Government has no capacity to provide the free services. Therefore, you should come to us, in the UDA, the originators of the idea of free medical services to tell you how to go about such issues because we have the knowledge, skills and capacity to handle them.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kakoma: Swallow your pride because if you do not do that, the challenges that the President was talking about will eat you up. The people are not going to continue being cheated over the provision of free medicines when the service is not available.

Mr Speaker, we, in the UDA will continue to push in this House the agenda for free education in Zambia from Grade 1 up to university. There must be free education because without that - and it is well documented even in the World Bank studies that the nations that have prospered are those that have invested heavily in education. Professor Lungwangwa is there. If you care to consult him, he will confirm what I have said. If we neglect our education, we are not going anywhere. As of now, we are having difficulties in implementing Free Education from Grade 1 up to Grade 9. In the rural areas this is a mockery because people are not benefiting.

In some basic schools, we also have pupils that are in Grades 10 and 11, so it becomes ridiculous when at the same school, some pupils are being offered free education while others are told to pay. It is not making sense even at the national level to educate people only up to Grade 9 because thereafter, the certificates that they would have obtained are irrelevant to the labour market as no one is going to get a job using a Grade 9 Certificate and it is a waste of public resources if we concentrated on providing free education only up to Grade 9. The free education only becomes meaningful if we extended it up to college and university level, and, in that way, we would have students graduating with skills that are relevant to the labour market. This way, people seeking employment will be employed and contribute to economic development in Zambia. Otherwise, if you leave the policy as it is, it will be a waste of public resources. Sir, I would like to remind this Government that if they are committed to the idea of providing free education, they should consult UDA. I am saying so because we have a well thought out plan on how to implement free education in Zambia and this will work.


Mr Kakoma: Sir, during the campaign, the UPND, FDD and UNIP, were telling people that for them to solve some of the problems in the agricultural sector, they need to provide free inputs to farmers.


Mr Kakoma: Sir, it makes a lot of economic sense. It is actually proper agricultural economics to subsidise production rather than consumption. The MMD is subsidising consumption. They are prepared to dig into the Government coffers to buy relief maize and distribute it freely to people. We would rather buy fertiliser for K50 billion and distribute to farmers freely instead of maize. These are basically the same resources and it is just the question of how to utilise them. It is a matter of whether you are going to subsidise production or consumption. On our part, we think the best way to help farmers in this country is to subsidise production rather than consumption.

Sir, these ideas are well documented and implemented in other countries. For example, in neighbouring countries, they were giving free relief food as well as inputs at the time that there was drought in Southern Africa. Today, those countries are producing more food. In our case, however, we have decided to continue giving relief food. In my constituency, during the election campaign, the MMD were going round the villages registering people to vote for the MMD in exchange for relief food. That is actually scandalous and wastage of public resources. We should not continue to do such malpractices.

Sir, in UDA we are saying, ‘Let the people govern’. This means that we should implement the Decentralisation Policy. People in rural areas are suffering because of the way the Government has ignored the issue of giving power to the people. Due to the fact that the Government has neglected rural areas and the councils, a lot of people are suffering.

Sir, for example, in Chavuma District, workers have not been paid for thirty-two months. In Zambezi District, council workers have not been paid for over thirteen months. This is simply because the Government is saying that these are not civil servants, which is wrong. If you issued the statutory instrument to the effect that council workers are not civil servants, please, revoke it so that you start paying them. These people are public officers and they deserve to be paid their salaries. If you continue to implement that policy on local government where you ignore workers because they are not civil servants, you are going to have yourselves to blame in the next elections.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe (Mufumbwe): Mr Speaker, may I take this opportunity to thank the Party President, Mr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, and the MMD NEC Members for adopting me as their candidate for Mufumbwe Constituency, for the 2006, Tripartite Elections. I also extend my thanks to all those NEC Members and other members from the Campaign Committee who took time to campaign for me. I would also like to extend my gratitude to His Honour the former Vice-President for taking time to explain the Government policies to the electorates. My sincere thanks also go to the National MMD Campaign Committee for the spiritual, moral and material support they gave me. Indeed, this went a long way in bringing victory to the party in general and to myself in particular.

Mr Speaker, I would like to extend my gratitude to the people of Mufumbwe Constituency for voting me and rallying behind the MMD Party and also for having understood and cherished the Party manifesto and its policies. May I also take this opportunity to congratulate you, Mr Speaker, on your re-election. This shows the confidence hon. Members of this House have in you. I also congratulate the Deputy Speaker, and the Deputy Chairman for Committees on being elected to the high offices. May the good Lord bless you all.

Mr Speaker, the Bible tells us to return good for good and not good for evil. During the President’s reign of office, he has done many good things for which he needs to be praised. When we look at corruption, we have to pay tribute and commend President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, for introducing the Zero Tolerance to Corruption Policy as this has brought decency to our country. Due to corruption, the dignity of Zambia and its people had degenerated to unacceptable levels, both in the country and internationally. Zambians were no longer trusted. Therefore, all payments for services and goods were to be made by cash payments. If you produced a cheque, it would not be accepted because the people of Zambia were no longer trusted.

Mr Speaker, corruption became rampant in the Civil Service. People were made to pay for services rendered to them by the officers in Government, whilst such services were rendered in their official capacities. Just to obtain a signature, one had to pay for it. This kind of corruption grew into plunder of the national economy. We all know what has happened to this country. Had it not been for the quick action by the New Deal Government led by President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, this country would have been crippled completely.

Sir, yes, there could be complaints that arrests in cases of plunder have been selective. It is not selectiveness, but the nature of cases and evidence presented. An investigator only takes a case to court for prosecution only when he has enough evidence to secure a conviction. The onus of proving the cases in the courts of law rests on the prosecution and the standard of proof required is that of beyond reasonable doubt. It is not like in a civil case where evidences weighed even on the balance of probability. Therefore, if it is a case where production of exhibit is required, you just have to produce such exhibits, but if such exhibits are not there because they have been destroyed or otherwise, then, such a case cannot be taken to court. In such cases, we say the ends of justice have been defeated. That is when people point fingers saying that one has been arrested and the other has not. It is not supposed to be like that. It is the duty of an investigating officer to ensure that the case is taken to court where he is going to secure conviction. It is him who is going to stand in the witness box surrounded by the learned defence counsels. Therefore, if he is going to be forced to arrest people, then he is going to be in problems. Those who have not been taken to court and arrested are free people. A person is innocent until proven guilty by the competent authority, the court of law.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: I am a Scotland Yard trained officer.


Mr Speaker, on examination leakages, we should commend the Zambia Government for stopping the examination leakages. The integrity of our education system was lowered. People no longer trusted Zambian education certificates because they were either obtained fraudulently or through examination leakages. PhD certificates were produced in Matero’s Lusaka Township. All types of certificates were made by sophisticated criminals in Matero. We should thank most sincerely our working Government for arresting the situation.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: Once again, we would like thank the New Deal Administration lead by President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, for restoring dignity to the Zambian people.

Mr Speaker, on mining, the people of Zambia should thank President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC, for resuscitating some mines which were declared dead.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Today, we are proudly talking about bashimaini, forgetting that these could not have been there without their resuscitation.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: Mr Speaker, five years ago, no one was talking about bashimaini in Solwezi, Kansanshi and Lumwana.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: Today, we have the language called bashimaini in the North-Western Province.

Mr Speaker, on job creation, the opening of the new mines has resulted in a number of people in their thousands getting employed. Is that not job creation? Thousands have been employed in Lumwana and thousands have also been employed in Kansanshi. Even at the Luanshya Mine that had collapsed, a number of people have been employed. Is that not job creation?

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe drank some water.


Mr Bonshe: Mr Speaker, A number of investors have invested in our Zambian economy because of the confidence they have in President Mwanawasa’s Government.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: The New Deal Government needs a pat at the back because they have done tremendous work in improving the lives of the Zambian people and the dignity of our people in Zambia.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker, with regard to Gender, the listening President, Mr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC., wants to share the Zambian cake equitably hence, the creation of the Gender Ministry so that our Zambian women can be equal to their male counterparts. I hope and trust that the hon. Minister of Gender whom I know as a pragmatic person will carry out this vision to its fulfillment.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: Mr Speaker, having said so, I would be failing in my duty, as a representative of the Mufumbwe people, if I did not highlight the problems my people are facing.

On governance, the district only has one constituency with sixteen wards. This makes it one of the biggest constituencies in the country with a radius of 20,000 square kilometers. The district is divided into two Chiefdoms ruled by Chief Mushima Mubambe to the South and Chief Chizera to the North.

Mr Speaker, there is a problem with the maintenance of roads. As it has already been alluded to by …

Hon. Opposition Members: Hammer! Hammer!

Mr Bonshe: As regards the M8 Road, the Chavuma/Mutanda Road, indeed, this road needs to be attended to. I am assuring the House that work has already started.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: Work is progressing very well because the MMD is a listening Government.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: Already, the tarring of the road has reached Mufumbwe District.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: This can be witnessed by the hon. Member for Zambezi-West because he knows where the tarring of the road has reached.

Mr Speaker, on health, lack of a district hospital is a great concern. Most serious cases are either referred to Mukinge Mission Hospital which is 159 kilometres away, in Kasempa, or Solwezi Hospital which is 244 kilometres away from Mufumbwe. A need to construct a fully-fledged district hospital cannot be over emphasised. It is surprising that young districts in the country have advanced in the construction of district hospitals.

Mr Speaker, allow me now to comment on Rural Health Centres. Admittedly, we have a shortage of health centres. The district has a total of twelve. Unfortunately, the centres are wide apart, forcing patients to cover long distances to access medical attention. The most affected is the eastern part of Mufumbwe where there is not even a single rural health centre. Patients are forced to cover 80 kilometres to reach the nearest health centre.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: There is an urgent need to put up two health centres in this part of the district. The existing health centres need to be improved. There are no staff houses and facilities. I am very proud to mention that His Excellency, the President mentioned in his address that Mufumbwe is being considered for some rural health centres and a hospital. It is in the President’s Address.

Mr Speaker, let me now comment on education. One other set back in the district is the lack of a boarding secondary school. We are aware that money has been sourced for the construction of a boarding school, but we wish to appeal to the Government to speed up the process so that construction can begin at the site.

Mr Speaker, the district has about three high schools. Although these schools were upgraded to high school status, there was no consideration for the constructions of more classrooms. The classes have now gone up to Grade 11. By next year, there will be Grade 12 classes.

Sir, some of the classes have two or three streams. This means that there are seventeen classes at each school against only five classrooms. However good a good teacher may be, he/she can find it difficult to teach the seventeen classes in five classes only. Therefore, my appeal to the Government, through this House, is that we put up more classrooms to facilitate a good learning environment.

Mr Speaker, we are very grateful that the new Deal Government attaches great importance to agriculture. The farming inputs reach us in time. That is why we are able to talk about a bumper harvest.

Hon. Government Members: Tell them!


Mr Bonshe: Some people just want to criticise and cannot accept the phrase ‘bumper harvest’. Instead, they call it ‘the so-called bumper harvest’. This is very unfortunate because this phrase has come in during the reign of President Mwanawasa. It was unheard of before.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: So, we are a listening Government!

Mr Speaker, the delayed connection of the district to the electricity national grid is crippling the district in harnessing the economic potential. Mufumbwe is currently leading in the province in groundnuts production. Tourism is a sleeping giant in the district. Unfortunately, the district is failing to attract commercial farmers and potential investors in tourism due to lack of hydro power. Currently, it is relying on an old generator that has been running for ten years and only supplies power at the district centre though with a lot of breakdowns. In the month of October, the district was in darkness for three weeks. Power was only restored three days ago.


Mr Bonshe: When reported, the listening Government heard and restored electricity.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: Therefore, we need to respect President Mwanawasa’s Administration because it is a listening one. Whatever you complain about, it will listen and attend to it.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bonshe: Sir, Mufumbwe District still has a long way to go in terms of adequate, clean and safe water supply. We still have communities that cover more than two kilometres to get to the nearest source of safe water.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hammer!

Mr Bonshe: Our people are still using shallow wells along the stream.

Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!

Mr Bonshe: The sanitation situation is also lamentable.

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

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: I am indebted to the, at least, seven hon. Members of the House who have raised, what they refer to as ‘silent points of order’, on the mode of dress by the hon. Member for Mufumbwe.


Mr Speaker: They say I should seriously rule whether his attire was acceptable in the House. My ruling is in the form of the guidance that, after tea break, the hon. Member for Mufumbwe should come back better dressed …


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: … in accordance with Standing Order No. 207.{mospagebreak}

Mr D. Mwila (Chipili): Mr Speaker, it is my rare honour and privilege to rise and give this maiden speech.

Firstly, I would like to thank my party President, Mr Micheal Chilufya Sata, for making it possible for me to win in Chipili Constituency. I would like to say that it was a sweet victory in the sense that I had to defeat the former Deputy Speaker.


Mr D. Mwila: The people of Chipili spoke clearly for peace and development. It is indeed a great honour to my colleagues and I in this House for the privilege and opportunity that the Zambians bestowed on us by electing us to represent them in this House that is mandated with the responsibility of making important legislation or laws that ultimately greatly impact on the lives of Zambians regardless of their colour, political or tribal affiliation and religious beliefs.

Hon. PF Member: Hear, hear!

Mr D. Mwila: Mr Speaker, as Member of Parliament for a rural constituency such as Chipili …

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours.

Mr D. Mwila: Mr Speaker, when business was suspended, I was saying that as a Member of Parliament for a rural constituency such as Chipili, I can only see myself repaying the honour and privilege of serving it, if, in the life of this Parliament, we will debate on the bread and butter issues of the people of Zambia and ultimately bring to an end poverty and diseases in the country.

Sir, from the people of Chipili’s point of view, I wish to submit that for poverty and diseases to be reduced and economic growth and development to mean anything, we need the following developmental issues:

A good road infrastructure to enhance commerce, communication, agriculture and other poverty reduction investments is of paramount importance in my constituency. The road infrastructure in Chipili, just like many other rural constituencies, is very poor. Therefore, I would like to appeal to the Ministry of Finance and National Planning that in this year’s budget, they allocate enough funds for this purpose as well as the tarring of the Mansa/Luwingu/Kasama Road to enhance development in this part of Zambia. The Mansa/Luwingu/Kasama Road must be tarred. Otherwise, Hon. Mutati and I will find it extremely difficult to come back to this House next time.


Mr Sichilima: Iwe tawakabwele!

Mr D. Mwila: Another area of concern relates to the health needs of the people of Chipili. The people of Chipili earnestly wish that the main hospital which is currently under construction be completed soon to enable them access and enjoy good medical services. It is my earnest appeal that adequate funds be made available for the project to progress.

Sir, another challenge that I would like to bring to the attention of this august House is access to clean drinking water. Again, it is my earnest appeal that this august House sees to it that boreholes are sunk to bring clean water to the doorsteps of the people of Chipili.

In the area of education, which is key in developing our human capital for poverty reduction, we need another high school at Mwenda to cater for Grades 8 to 12, as the high school at Chipili is distant for many pupils. To enhance the teaching of science subjects that are essential for growth and development, the school will need funding for a laboratory at Mwenda. With regard to the issues that confront this nation, I would like to submit that on labour the following concerns have to be addressed to enhance the dignity of Zambia and Zambians.

As a product of the labour movement, I would like to lend my voice to fight for lower taxes for workers. Mr Speaker, when we were campaigning, people said it was not possible for them to lower the taxes. Today, they are agreeing with us that it is possible to adjust them …


Mr D Mwila: … by broadening the tax base of the informal and corporate sectors in the aftermath of the country having reached the HIPC Completion Point.

Mr Speaker, other cancerns we have no choice, but to fight against are casualisation and the tendency by some investors to import unnecessary skills in the mining industries such as drillers, mining surveyors, shift bosses and mine captains. We are not amused that some of our investors are bringing in skills that are readily available in Zambia while many of our capable Zambians are employed as casuals.

Mr Speaker, most of the time, Government officials issue statements on investors bringing skilled labour that is already available in Zambia, and yet the Ministry of Labour and Social Security issues the work permits. Therefore, we are blaming the Government for this malpractice and urge them to put their house in order.

Mr Speaker, on unbalanced salaries compared to expatriates, just like our forefathers fought the industrial colour bar which discriminated African workers on salaries and other conditions of service, the old cancers of unequal salaries and conditions of service between expatriates and Zambians should be squarely faced to ensure that the concept of equal-pay-for-equal-work-of-equal-value is observed regardless of any artificial consideration.

In the light of the casualisation problem and in our quest to promote employment, we need, as a Parliament, to come up with an assertive and comprehensive labour policy to guard against the growing phenomenon of Zambian workers getting employed on temporary or short-term contracts and entrench the policy of equal-pay-for-equal-work.

Again, Sir, I would like to bring to the attention of this House that at Mansa General Hospital and Mwense Municipal Council, there are many casuals. As such, there is a need for the Ministry concerned to look into this problem.

Mr Speaker, I now would like to talk about the issue of minimum wage and conditions Cap. 276. We are very conversant with these Acts. There was a review or an amendment where the figures were enhanced. We are talking about the lowest figure which is about K268,000, K450,000 and K715,000 for a qualified typist. I think there is a need for us to protect our workers. I mean there is a need for us to review this Act every year.

Mr Speaker, another concern is on our Government employees, whose employment is terminated. Regardless of the mode of exit, it takes two years or more for them to be paid. Where is the Government, if I may ask? Some of these people have died without getting their benefits. Therefore, there is a need for the Government to look into this problem so that we can develop together.

Mr Speaker, I would like to say that the Government is the major employer and, therefore, it is supposed to be in the forefront in ensuring that the labour laws are protected or observed. I now would like to talk about the collective agreement that has been signed between the Government and the unions on housing allowances. The Government does not pay on time and this has now become a song of the day. Where is the Ministry of Labour and Social Security? Every time you read the newspapers, there is a go-slow or strike. This is being unproductive and as such, there is need for the Ministry of Labour and Social Security to look at that. If the Government cannot observe the signed collective agreements, what about the foreign investors or Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) which is owned by Indians? What about Chambeshi Metals which is owned by Indians or NFCA owned by Chinese? There is a need for the Government to lead by example.

Mr Speaker, we should not only wear suits and not deliver, but wear suits and deliver.

Mr Speaker, I now would like to talk about the pension scheme administration. The coming in of new investors has witnessed a tendency on their part to introduce new pension schemes that are no better than the Mukuba Pension Scheme or NAPSA. We should insist, as a nation, to have all our workers covered by viable pension schemes to guarantee them a livelihood following the termination of their employment. An appeal should be made to all stakeholders to work towards strengthening social security administration and coverage for all workers in Zambia.

Mr Speaker, the foreign investors have come up with their own pension schemes. I would like to bring to the attention of this House that 70 per cent of the funds contributed by our employees is invested outside the country

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr D Mwila: … and the Government is watching. There is a need for the Government to review the Sales and Development Agreement so that we are able to protect our employees and the country.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Patriotic Front Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi (Luena): Mr Speaker, firstly, I would like to congratulate our nation on having successfully conducted the tripartite elections on 28th September, 2006. Heated as the campaigns were, the mere fact that the elections passed without major incidents is testimony to our maturing democracy.

In the same vein, let me place on record my congratulations and those of the people of Luena Constituency to His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa SC, and the MMD party on emerging victorious in the polls.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: Mr Speaker, I also congratulate all hon. Members of Parliament on both sides of the House on their deserved victories. I must also place on record my heartfelt congratulations to you, Mr Speaker, Madam Deputy Speaker and the Deputy Chairman of Committees of the Whole House on having inspired the confidence of this House as was demonstrated by your unopposed election to your respective positions. Let me take this opportunity to thank the people of Luena Constituency who voted for me with such a wide margin despite my standing as an independent candidate against four other candidates representing established parties, which are, MMD, PF, UDA and APC.

Mr Lubinda: APC?

Mr Milupi: My victory is a measure of my popularity in the constituency. Indeed, if any hon. Member in this House wishes to test their popularity rather than that of their respective political parties, let them stand as independent in 2011.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: Mr Speaker, the President’s Address to this House clearly gave many people hope that his Government intends to tackle the many issues that are uppermost in the minds of many of our citizens. I am encouraged by the President’s emphatic mission of the desires of Zambians which stated:

‘Zambians spoke clearly and loudly and will reflect seriously on their concerns with a view to implementing those that can be implemented immediately’

Mr Speaker, in this statement, I recognise the commitment of the President in adhering to the tenets of our democratic principles. The President clearly intends to address the concerns of the whole country and not only of those whom he perceives to have voted for him and his party.

Mr Speaker, in his address the President also recognised that, to an extent, there are subtle differences and variations between the concerns of our urban and rural people. It is in this regard that in demonstrating that his Government has heard the concerns of the people, they take precautions not to fall in the trap of only paying attention to the concerns of those who expressed them by not voting for them. I urge the Government to also address the concerns of those that voted for them. In this regard, I draw the attention of this Government to the plight of the people who live in our rural areas.

Mr Speaker, the post-independence developmental efforts of the various Governments in this country since 1964 have been lopsided resulting in the wide disparities that we see today in the levels of development in our towns and those of our rural areas. As a country, we appear to be on a path to creating a two-tiered nation, where one tier is unrecognisable from the other.

Mr Speaker, by clearly demonstrating their support for the Government and being overwhelmingly responsible for the re-election of the President and the ruling party, the rural areas have, indeed, made an equivocal statement that they are an important component of this nation and any politician seeking national support ignores them at his or her own peril.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: Mr Speaker, I would like to address some of the issues that were raised by the President and the electorate at large.

Zambia is a poor country, but the poverty that is prevalent in the rural areas is so endemic that it is almost tangible. The gap between the developmental levels of the urban areas and those of the rural areas is growing by the day. I urge this Government to address the issues by bringing measures to this House, through the hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning’s budget speech, to tackle rural poverty. Tax and other incentives must be introduced to ensure we have the kind of accelerated development in the rural areas necessary to close this gap.

The Government must re-examine the policies which result in people with least incomes paying mostly for certain commodities such as food stuffs and fuel because of ill-conceived distribution policies that disadvantage the areas furthest from the line of rail.

Mr Speaker, high value employment is the bedrock upon which the dignity of every person rests. It is a right of every person of employable age. The source of employment does not matter. It could be the Government through the Civil Service or parastatal sector or the private sector. The fact of the matter is that it is the Government of the day’s responsibility to ensure that as many people as possible of their employable citizens are in gainful employment. Any Government in any democratic dispensation such as ours would do well to treat the employment level benchmarks, as one of the most important and critical statistics in the nation. We should aim for 100 per cent employment rate and achieve the highest possible rate. The Government ensures a high employment rate by coming up with socio-economic measures that foster employment. This Government is no exception.

Mr Speaker, education is the foundation upon which any nation can hope to have real and sustainable development. In 1776, the father of economics Adam Smith when calling for public provision of education had this to say:

‘The whole society is at risk when any segment of that society is poorly educated.’

Mr Mtonga: Zoona.

Mr Milupi: The education facilities and infrastructure in rural areas need immediate and focused attention. The nations that today constitute the Tiger economies got to where they are by focusing on the provision of education earlier on in their development.

Mr Kambwili: We need you in the boat.

Mr Milupi: In Luena Constituency, for example, many of our people still depend on community schools constructed with mud and poles and grass-thatched buildings as classrooms and staff houses, with teachers sourced from among the villagers, without any formal teacher training and dependent upon the impoverished communities to provide for their upkeep through irregular cash and food donations.

Mr Speaker, I urge this Government to put up a mini-"marshal" plan to ensure that schools are upgraded to basic schools with properly constructed modern classrooms and teachers’ houses. The schools must have fully trained teachers on the payroll of the Ministry of Education.

Mr Speaker, the rest of the basic schools in my constituency require to be upgraded and well equipped so that they can function as proper basic schools providing quality education to our children who, after all, are at the most critical stage of their development.

At the high school level, Luena Constituency, an area that is about 120km long and about 70km wide has only one high school. This denies our children access to education up to Grade 12. I urge the Government to work on programmes that begin to upgrade the following basic schools to full high school status. In my area, there is Ndanda, Nangula, moombo, Ushaa, Nangili and Sitoya.

These must be properly constructed high schools with properly equipped science laboratories and other facilities manned by adequate and qualified personnel. These schools must be chosen in such a manner that each and every child in the area has access within easy reach of the schools.

Mr Speaker, on health, Luena Constituency, like other rural areas, is ravaged by preventable diseases such as Malaria, TB and HIV/AIDS. No meaningful and sustainable development can take place in an environment of high disease incidence and prevalence rate. We must embark on disease control and elimination.

The provision of safe drinking water to a wider section of our communities in the rural areas is a challenge all of us must rise to. We must have abundant and easily accessible clean water to more people in villages and other high population centres such as schools. Our success in this area will impact positively on the fight against water-born diseases, especially on children and they will lesson the burden on our womenfolk, a good number of whom have to trek long distances just to fetch water. A programme to provide boreholes equipped with hand pumps would go a long way in solving this problem. In Luena, to begin to address this issue, we reckon we need about 400 boreholes equipped with hand pumps.

Mr Speaker, with regard to roads, perhaps one of the most visible indicators of lack of development in any area is the absence of a suitable all-weather road network to facilitate easy communication. In Luena Constituency, there is no road infrastructure. My constituents take days to walk long distances that would normally take an hour by motor transport if roads were available. If we construct the roads, these will facilitate opening up of not only my constituency, but others and make them ready for agricultural development and commerce and trade.

Sir, with respect to the whole of the Western Province, no meaningful development will take place without embarking on a comprehensive road construction programme that will ensure that many more of our places are linked to each other by tarred roads. The terrain of the Western Province is mostly sandy with substantial wetland areas which require four-wheel drive vehicles to travel from one place to the other. This makes travel in the province as well as in our own towns and district centres very cumbersome and expensive. In this regard, the following trunk roads within the province need to be constructed and/or completed:

(a) Mongu/Kalabo

(b) Kaoma/Lukulu

(c) Kalabo/Sesheke via Kalongola

(d) Senanga/Kalongola

(e) Mongu/Lukulu via Mbanga

(f) Kaoma/Sesheke via Luampa

(g) Kaoma/Luampa via Kalumwange.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: Mr Speaker, the issue of the Mongu/Kalabo Road needs to be resolved quickly. The failure of the road is a clear indication that in matters of development, you ignore the local people’s views at your own peril. In a nutshell, the contractor on the Mongu/Kalabo Road used a wrong construction method. Nature, as any engineer will tell us, cannot allow a flimsy sand embankment to be placed across the raging river because essentially, during the flood season, the Barotse Plain between Mulamba and Tapo area is a 40 kilometre wide river. Tens of millions of dollars have already been spent, and in the minds of many people, this has been credited to the developmental effort of the Western Province, and yet we still not have Mongu/Kalabo Road. We expect the new hon. Minister of Works and Supply, Mr Simbao, who is an engineer, to ensure that this road is completed to the satisfaction of all.

Sir, as regards canals, the great and legendary Lozi King who was mentioned earlier this afternoon, King Lubosi Lewanika, and reigned between 1890 and 1916, facilitated the construction of many canals in Barotseland. These canals are critical to the well being of many of our people in the province. They provide water for domestic use, irrigation, water transport, fish and so many other facilities. However, like all creations of man, they require regular maintenance. Our canals have not been maintained in many years. We urge the Government to look at this and ensure that our canals are also cleared.

Mr Speaker, with regard to agriculture, rural areas must of necessity become the engines of agri-based economic development in this nation. I wholly subscribe and support the good agricultural programmes alluded to in His Excellency the President’s Address. In supporting these programmes, may I take this opportunity to urge this Government to ensure that these programmes are extended to all corners of the country equally.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: Sir, the Western Province in general, and Luena Constituency in particular, have capacity to be the rice basket of this country. The soils and conditions are most ideal for rice growing and the people of the province have shown themselves ready, willing and capable of increasing their rice production, but they need help from this Government.

Mr Speaker, the Fertiliser Support Programme which is the Government’s focus intervention to increase production in the small-scale and peasant farming communities seem to have completely eluded my constituency. My interactions with the constituents during the election campaign reviewed that not a single bag of fertiliser under the Fertiliser Support Programme was received in my constituency.

Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!

Mr Mubika: Ask Sibetta!

Mr Milupi: Mr Speaker, I urge the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives, Mr Kapita, who is a farmer, to ensure that this situation is corrected with respect to my constituency. We all need subsidised fertiliser.

Sir, I understand the acronym FRA to stand for Food Reserve Agency, not Maize Reserve Agency. Let the FRA also get involved in purchasing rice from our farmers in the Western Province.

Mr Speaker, cattle rearing is the bedrock of wealth and dignity for any self-respecting Lozi, and yet our numbers have been decimated over the years. In the days of our forefathers, the cattle population in the Western Province was 1,500. It is estimated that now, it is around 600,000. We need to fight diseases so that this wealth can go up as demonstrated by Botswana, that, in 1964, had fewer cattle than the Western Province, but now has a thriving cattle industry.

Sir, the Cattle Restocking Programme that was put in place about seven years ago to mitigate ravages of cattle diseases in the Southern Province was not extended to the Western Province. Let me remind the House that we are also a cattle keeping province.

Mr Speaker, on natural resources, effective and sustainable development of rural areas will depend on a proper and well managed exploitation of natural resources that is aimed at creating employment and wealth for our rural people. Luena Constituency has abundant natural resources. The legendary Likon’ge Forest, at the moment, is exploited by lodgers without benefit to the local people. We urge the Government to look into this.

Sir, I was interested to learn from the hon. Minister of Mines and Minerals Development, through his statement on 31st October, 2006, that reports of prolonged fires in Kabompo, Chavuma and Zambezi as reported to His Excellency the President, initiated the exploration that has caused the oil euphoria. Let me report that, in Luena, we have reports of prolonged fires. We need these to be investigated.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Milupi: In conclusion, Luena Constituency and the Western Province requires, now more than ever, development to catch up with other provinces. We need accelerated development. We have a term for accelerated development in Luena Constituency. It is called zwelopili ya lubilo. The Government must demonstrate leadership and ensure that this is done. The people of the Western Province have demonstrated the hope in His Excellency the President’s ability to lead a Government that can change their status from the country’s poorest province by giving him the highest percentage of votes cast (70 per cent) by any province, including the Eastern and North-Western provinces. In the same vein, the people of Luena Constituency gave the President the highest percentage of the valid votes cast in any constituency anywhere in Zambia, at 90 per cent. These people now await …

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

Mr Mschili (Kabushi): I am the bearer of the greetings from the people of Kabushi to you, Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Speaker, the Chairman of Committees of the Whole House and all fellow elected and nominated hon. Members of Parliament. I also wish to compliment you, Mr Speaker, the new Deputy Speaker and the Deputy Chairman of Committees of the Whole House on your election to this august House. It is my honour and privilege to address this august House.

Firstly, I would like to thank the people of Kabushi for the confidence and trust they have shown in me by electing me with an overwhelming majority on the 28th September, 2006, as their representative to this august House. I also wish to extend my hand of friendship to the four colleagues who also aspired for leadership of Kabushi, but were not successful. To them, I would like to say that we should work together for the good of our people. May I also thank my campaign committee, all party organs, friends, relatives and supporters who helped and contributed in various ways with my campaign.

Mr Speaker, as a reaction to the President’s Address, I wish to state that the voting pattern on the Copperbelt suggests that the MMD Government has fallen short of people’s aspirations.

Hon. MMD Members: Aah.

Mr Mschili: I am glad to note …

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mschili: … that many of our aspirations in the boat are now on board, for instance, lower taxes.

Mr Speaker, I hail from Kabushi Constituency in Ndola. It is the smallest, but the most densely populated in the city. For the information of other hon. Members, Kabushi means a small goat. With the passage of time, these goats have disappeared. I am sure they have been slaughtered and eaten on account of starvation. The same happened to our zoo in Ndola. We had few animals, unfortunately, they have all disappeared. In fact, councillors poached even the last Mpombo.


Mr Mschili: On a happy note, Mr Speaker, my constituency could be toured within a day as opposed to my colleague in Bwana Mkubwa who needs the entire week to achieve the same assignment. However, it is a constituency whose problems are peculiar and complex and require unique remedies at a very high cost. It is the least developed in that it is the only conventional township with pit latrines, though the sewer reticulation system is within reach. The washing ablution blocks are still shared in this current disease-prone scenario. Access roads are not only impassable, but literally closed. The water supply is erratic. Raw flows are a common feature and children have found use for it as they turn it into a swimming pool. Social amenities, such as, welfare centres and clinics are few and far between. Therefore, they are over stretched

Sir, my constituency was at some point a thriving and buoyant industrial complex of the Copperbelt Province. The collapse of this vital nerve centre of our country has led to massive lay offs that have meant an increase in crime and disease.

Mr Speaker, it is in view of the above saddening and depressing atmosphere that I present my maiden speech. Please, hear me clearly. It is done in the hope that hon. Members will give a sympathetic ear ahead of the 2007 Budget. I have no doubt my three colleagues in the city will add their voices to this call as we attempt to revive the city. The issues no longer pattern to Ndola only, but rather a national issue.

Sir, although the economy was on the decline from the early 1980s, it was mainly accelerated by the subsequent MMD’s ill-conceived liberalisation policies. Although the initial objectives were well meant, the dosage was badly managed and this led to many casualties. The following are the side effects.

Mr Speaker, the various incentives that were given to attract investors are still being given to these foreign nationals. The incentives tend to increase the profit margins of the investors. In most cases, the so-called investors ditch the country at the expiration of the stipulated period only to re-appear under a different company name and enjoy the same incentives second time around.

Sir, no tangible benefits have reached an average Zambian under the above policy. The loss of employment has been the order of the day. Further, a number of political decisions were made under this policy in order to settle personal scores. A case in point is that of Northland Engineering and Furncoz in Ndola. I am sure most of you, who have lived in Ndola, will bear me witness.

Mr Speaker, I also wish to brief the House on the current status of the city as it relates to industry. The council is the engine of development as it is mandated to spearhead service delivery. Unfortunately, this engine is non-functional because the industrial base which facilitated economic growth has been destroyed. The Central Government has taken the lead in this destruction crusade through various legislation, pronouncements and economic decisions. These decisions have negatively impacted on the council’s ability to promote economic development.

Sir, one of the economic indicators in the economy’s growth is the rate of construction activity. It is noted with sadness that the value of building plans are on the decline. For instance, all the major construction companies have either relocated or wound up.

Sir, Ndola houses most of the textile industries in the country. It is sad to report that many of them have either closed down and the few that are operating are operating below the expected capacity.

Mr Speaker, this sector has not been spared from the policies referred to above. The local companies cannot withstand the competition. It is noted with regret that numerous companies have closed or relocated or are simply operating below capacity. This trend has meant reduction in employment rates which, in turn, contributes to crime and disease. It is unfortunate that a people’s Government should be in the forefront in depressing its own nationals by giving preference to foreigners through grant of incentives or accepting goods which are externally heavily subsidised. Some of these companies which are in this category are:

(a) Dunlop Zambia Limited;

(b) Colgate Palmolive;

(c) Reckitt and Colman;

(d) Johnson and Johnson;

(e) Lyons Brooke Bond; and

(f) Copper Harvest.

Mr Speaker, these companies employed most of the people in Ndola until the time these polices that allowed companies that only ask for tax incentives, but the Government was very reluctant to give them. As a result, all these companies closed down and sent a lot of people on the streets. For example, when machines for DUNLOP were relocated to Zimbabwe, they sent Zambians from Ndola to operate the machines in Zimbabwe, which is a very sad scenario. The companies that were privatised have not brought any meaningful gains to the local people other than misery. The original investment in plant and equipment that has since been sold externally is massive and it will be a mammoth task to replace it.

There are numerous companies, which have met a similar fate at the hands of our poor policies.

Sir, the MMD Government has consigned the majority of Zambians to oblivion as it protects the outsiders by its protective policies. The influx of foreign nationals in retail business is increasing by day. Is there any justification for aliens to start trading in chickens and salaula at the Kamwala Council-owned Market? Ideally, we expect them to invest in the infrastructure that should spur economic development. For instance, the management of Shoprite by Zambians is testimony that we do not need foreigners to own and manage such businesses. We merely need to empower these Zambians as they are already trained.

Mr Speaker, Ndola has earned the name of ghost town. It has to be redeemed. Unless corrective measures are taken, it will be appropriate to install billboards at the entry of the city which should read: ‘In Loving Memory of a City that Once Upon a Time Flourished, But Was Tragically Killed by the MMD Economic Policies – Rest In Peace Until Revival Time’.


Mr Mschili: Mr Speaker, I believe that the restoration of our city, indeed, like many others, cannot just come about on its own. In this regard, I wish to share with the House my suggestions.

My party is a great believer in the Decentralisation Policy. It is our view that the proposed Ten-Year Decentralisation Policy Implementation Programme should be shortened, as the policy is cardinal to local service delivery. The councils must be strengthened in all spheres. Councils must play their role by putting their house in order and look beyond the horizon. The Central Government, on the other hand, must let loose some shares of taxes. In any case, they hold the most buoyant resource base. We should learn from what is obtaining at the global level if we have to rise to this challenge.

This reminds me of the President during his campaign trip in the Eastern Province. He spoke about taking the motor licencing service back to the council, but I was surprised when I was going through his address that this was not mentioned. Maybe, I would ask, through you, Sir, if we could have a feedback on motor licencing because as Ndola City Council, we are really desperate to start receiving this income.

Mr Speaker, the current poverty syndrome requires remedial measures. It is high time there was a deliberate policy to empower Zambians with a programme similar to the one in South Africa. It would also strengthen the hold on industry, if all investors were mandated to include Zambian nationals on boards of directors and shareholdings.

The current issue of investors’ involvement in petty businesses must be re-examined with the view of streamlining the policy. It definitely runs contrary to the spirit of the country’s Investment Act. For instance, we have an influx of some people selling herbs on the streets, especially in Ndola. Of late, it has become a very sad state of affairs because the Masai people are all over the markets selling these herbs. Therefore, I would like to call upon the hon. Minister of Health to accompany me to Ndola so that she can see how these people are administering these drugs.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mschili: Mr Speaker, let me now apprise the House on the local issues in my constituency bearing in mind that the bulk of them have been covered in the main body of my speech.

The biggest market in the city is in my constituency and it has been the wish of Ndola at large that this market be upgraded on similar lines as to those in Lusaka.

Mr Speaker, you may wish to know that this market was built as far back as the early 30s. Since that time, there has never been any form of maintenance. The market has got only one toilet and since the market has grown, many more people are using it. These are some of the reasons we want to have a modern market in Ndola.

Mr Speaker, the road network should be re-opened. Many of them will need to be reconstructed, as they have not been attended to for a long time. We would, therefore, like to request that we be given equipment that would help us cut on the costs of road maintenance. These contractors are brought in to work on a small patch on the roads, and yet their pricing is so exorbitant. This is why we are requesting this Government to, at least, provide us with basic equipment such as rollers or front-end loaders.

There is an outcry for an establishment of a mini-hospital in Kabushi. Currently, we have two existing hospitals. We are suggesting that one of them be upgraded to a mini-hospital, equipped with a mortuary.

During the election period, ZESCO had embarked on a programme to electrify Kabushi, but I do not know whether this was an election gimmick because immediately after elections, this project was stopped. During that time, I do not know whether it was MMD that hired a spokesperson who was one of the candidates. He talked about the same ZESCO giving instructions on how much money has been given out, but, after this, everything came to a halt. We want to take this matter up.

Lastly, I would like, on behalf of Hon. Sikasote, to retire his written speech to you.

With these few words, I beg to move.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Kambwili (Roan): Mr Speaker, allow me to begin by submitting my elation for permitting me to present my maiden speech to this august House.

Before pre-empting my deliberations, I join my fellow hon. Members in congratulating you on your election as Speaker for the next five years. Through you, Sir, I further wish to congratulate the Deputy Speaker and the Deputy Chairperson of the Committee of the Whole House on their election to their respective positions.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, I would be failing in my duties if I did not thank the people of Roan Constituency for the confidence and trust they have in me by electing me as their Member of Parliament.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

May I also thank all my friends and relatives who assisted me in one way or the other. Let me also thank my wife and children for the encouragement that they gave me.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, further, let me also pay tribute to the Late Sefeliano Mwanza, my former Headmaster at Mpatamato Secondary School, who during my school days prophesised that, one day, I would be an hon. Member of Parliament for Roan Constituency and this, indeed, has come to pass.

Mr Speaker, I was sensitised during the orientation workshop that Parliament from its original word, means, ‘talking’. I am, therefore, enchanted and fortified to talk for the people of Roan Constituency by whose vote I am privileged to be part of this august House.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, I rise to freely debate based on issues raised in the President’s Address that concern my constituency. I bear in my mind that being silent on some subjects is omitting an essential part of the mandate vested in me by the people of Roan Constituency.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, I refuse to be part of the unclaimed souls because, for me, the call for salvation is made clear by trumpets. My contribution to this debate will be sectoral.

Sir, Let me begin by commenting on the mining sector. At independence, in 1964, Zambia’s economy was generally prosperous and was almost wholly dependant on copper mining even though the fall in copper prices on the world market in the 1970s impacted negatively on the economy of Zambia. The mining sector’s contribution to Zambia’s development cannot be underplayed.

Sir, the effects aimed at diversifying the economy today are commendable, but it is a reality that copper mining is still the mainstay of this national economy. It is disheartening though that the liberalisation of Zambia’s economy in the 1990s put the mining sector in total disarray because the sale of the mines was hastily implemented and without foresight.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, the case for the mining sector in Luanshya is heart pricking. The mine in Luanshya was sold at a meagre price of US$7.5 million, far below the market value of the Luanshya Copper Mines.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Today, the Luanshya Copper Mines does not operate to desired levels. The company has only concentrated on Baluba Shaft and the Concentrator. Three other shafts, namely: 14, 18 and 28 together with the smelter have been closed down. This has resulted in mass unemployment. It has also reduced copper production output, a minus on the Zambia’s gross domestic product.

Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, the Luanshya Copper Mines has even started asset stripping at these shafts, leaving no hope for the reopening of these shafts. It must be noted that some Australian Mining Firm has shown interest in re-opening Shafs 18 and 28, but the Government has failed to act in the interest of the people of Roan Constituency. This is shame.

Sir, the reopening of the said shafts can create about 2,000 extra employment in Roan Constituency. I, therefore, request the New Deal Government to be serious with what they do and seriously look into this issue.

Sir, it is really sad that out of 8,000 ex-employees employed by ZCCM, Luanshya Division, only 1,000 are taken up by these New Deal Indians. The majority of them have been casualised and slave wages are paid to them. Expatriates are, however, exempted from slave wages probably because the New Deal Government perceives them to be more equal than others, a situation that is unacceptable.

It is inconceivable that the Luanshya Copper Mines which has lamentably failed to operate and maintain the current unity has bought Milyashi Mine at a cheap price. Surely, how can a listening Government sell another unit to Luanshya Copper Mines, and yet there is clear evidence of failure to run the current units. This is, indeed, tantamount to committing atrocities against the people of Roan Constituency.

It is against this background that contrary to what the area Member of Parliament for Maamba said, I appeal to this Government, if it is, indeed, a listening Government not to privatise Maamba Collieries and Ndola Lime, but instead, re-capitalise the two entities so that money can remain in Zambia and not be externalised.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, from experience, all privatised mining units have reduced their labour force and it would be retrogressive to declare more workers redundant at Maamba Collieries and Ndola Lime.

Mr Speaker, the Government must learn from the grave mistakes of the 1990s and ensure that they are not repeated.

Sir, in my opening sentiments on mining, I indicated that mining is still the mainstay of Zambia’s economy. I also indicated that the sale of the mines was hastily done. Therefore, taking this into account, I urge the Government to accelerate the implementation of measures which will restore order in the mining industry. Central to all these measures is the re-negotiation of the sale of strategic mines. The externalisation of profits by mining companies leave Zambia with little to boast about vis-à-vis, the high copper prices on the world market.

Mr Speaker, it is very sad that we have heard songs of high copper prices. The benefits have not trickled down to the common man partly because the public do not have a stake in the shares of the major mining companies. In the same breath, I urge the New Deal Government to urgently invest in the Iron Ore Project initiated by ex-miners in my Constituency called Fibomba Chipuba. This is a self-help project initiated by ex-miners in their quest to create employment.

Mr Speaker, allow me now to comment on water and sanitation. Water is life. However, this does not seem to be translated into reality in my constituency. The Nkana Water and Sewerage Company created by the MMD Government has disconnected water supply to most residential areas due to huge bills which were accumulated during the ZCCM era. I consider this to be inhuman because under ZCCM, water and electricity bills were paid by the mines.

I, therefore, call on the New Deal Government, which claims to be a listening Government to urgently intervene so that the utility company can write off the bills accumulated during the ZCCM era. This also applies to ZESCO.

Mr Speaker, Luanshya used to be one of the cleanest towns on the Copperbelt, but this is not the case today because the council has failed to maintain the area. Drainages are blocked and generally the surroundings are dirty. People cannot water their surroundings because of high bills levied by the Mulonga Water and Sewerage Company. In order to change this status quo, I earnestly appeal to the Ministry of Local Government and Housing to provide funding to the councils and ensure the working conditions for the people in councils are improved.

Mr Speaker, with regard to the road network, in order to prevent road traffic accidents, there is a serious need for the Government to maintain roads. This does not only apply to roads connecting major cities, but also, roads connecting residential areas. It is not only Lusaka that needs the roads connecting townships, but also the Copperbelt.

I, therefore, urge the Government to provide adequate finance for the re-surfacing of the Town/Roan/Mpatmato Road which is in a deplorable state.

Mr Speaker, it is disheartening to learn that the President of the Republic of Zambia, not the hon. Minister of Works and Supply, but the President, came to Luanshya during the by-election and informed the people that as soon you vote Moses Chilambwe into office, I am going to re-do the roads. To date, this road has not been done.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, if the Head of State can be the first one to tell lies, what about his hon. Ministers?

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order! Order!

Could the hon. Member withdraw the word, ‘lies’? It is unparliamentary.

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, I withdraw the word ‘lies’.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, allow me to remind the New Deal Government that as opposed to the statements made that Zambians forget easily, the people of Luanshya do not forget easily. They have not forgotten about the President’s by-election promise of maintaining the said road.

Mr Speaker, with regard to health, like the whole country, the disease burden is escalating in Roan Parliamentary Constituency. Unfortunately, the health sector, as a whole, is confronted with many challenges.

The case for Roan Hospital makes very sad reading. The hospital faces critical shortage of drugs, medical supplies and the doctors: patient ratio is disproportionate. This is unacceptable.

Mr Speaker, the clinics in the township which were run very well by former ZCCM are now closing at 1600 hours. I, therefore, urge this Government to make sure that these clinics operate 24 hours daily because disease does not choose what time to strike.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

I would, therefore, like to appeal to the Ministry of Health to urgently address these concerns. While the political arena is characterised by rhetoric, we cannot afford to extend this to health matters.

Mr Speaker, concerning other critical issues, due to the constraints imposed by time, I beg to synthesise other critical needs for my constituency which include, but not limited to the following:

(a) Education

The Government must maintain old Schools and construct new schools. This is based on the realisation that many girls and boys are denied the right to education due to prohibitive distances more especially in the peri-urban of Roan Parliamentary Constituency;

(b) Trade

There is an urgent need for maintenance of old markets and construction of new modern ones in all the residential areas of Roan Constituency. In a country like Zambia where unemployment rates continue to increase every year, markets provide an opportunity to our citizens to engage in income-generating activities for survival. Therefore, construction of markets should be a must;


An all-inclusive approach to the pandemic is more required now than ever before. The Government must partner with Churches and NGOs to fight this pandemic;

(d) Corruptions and Drug Trafficking

The fight against corruption should not just be restricted to former leaders. The Anti-Corruption Commission must investigate and prosecute all who fall in conflict with the law. This way, the current efforts to fight corruption by the New Deal Administration would not be viewed as if it is targeted at settling old scores we do not know about.

Mr Speaker, the Anti-Corruption Commission should also monitor how the Constituency Development Funds (CDF) are used and ensure that all those who plunder CDF are brought to book in a non-selective manner.

Hon. PF Members: Hear hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, let me emphasise here that all those who plundered CDF must be prosecuted and their cases expeditiously handled so that they are sent to prison where they belong.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, I would also appeal to the Drug Enforcement Commission to deal with drug traffickers effectively. As the saying goes, ‘Old habits die hard’. Indeed, the Drug Enforcement Commission must not only focus on new culprits, but also on known drug traffickers.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

(e) Taxation

Mr Speaker, it is surprising that in his address, the President of the Republic of Zambia His Excellency, Levy Patrick Mwanawasa SC, talked about reducing taxes when just a few weeks ago, he categorically stated that the PF policy on tax that propounds reduction of taxes was unattainable. I hope this is not another paper-based or cosmetic pronouncement.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Indeed, our people need tax relief, and more especially on, personal levy, fuel, levy, market levy and many other levies.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, I also appeal to the New Deal Government to reduce duty on imported motor vehicles as we do not, as a country, manufacture motor vehicles. This will enable more people to own vehicles resulting in increased fuel levy.

Mr Speaker, the issue of motor vehicle duty is very serious. I lived in the United Kingdom (UK) and I have seen most of the Zambian citizens who live in the UK importing their vehicles from England to Zimbabwe. In Zimbabwe, there are many fleets of trucks. The trucks are sent by Zambian people. They are unable to send the trucks to Zambia because of the high duty imposed on vehicles, and yet we are unable to manufacture vehicles.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Allow me now to talk about street kids.

(g) Street Kids

Mr Speaker, this issue needs urgent attention as these street kids will, in future, turn into dangerous criminals due to the hardships that they face on the streets. It is disheartening to learn that most children are on the street as a result of being rejected by their parents.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: I am taken aback to learn that even some hon. Members of Parliament have started rejecting their own offsprings. I refer to today’s The Post Newspaper.


(g) Public Service

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, public workers play an important role in the running of Government. They are a conduit through which public policies and programmes are translated into reality for the benefit of the more than 10 million Zambians. Civil servants must, therefore, be non-partisan in the manner they deal with public affairs. May I also call on the Government to pay Public Service workers decent salaries to motivate them.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: It is sad that some public officers such as District Commissioners clearly show the UNIP mentality of governance.

Mr Speaker, I, therefore, would like to urge the new Deal Government to look at the CVs of some of these District Commissioners, investigate cases of abuse of office among them and bring to book all those who are found wanting.

Furthermore, the District Commissioners must not be appointed by the President, but be employed by Cabinet based on merit and qualifications and not ‘cadrelism’.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, as the area Member of Parliament, I shall be quick to report to the Executive should cases of abuse of office by these officers arise in Luanshya. May I also appeal to all Heads of Departments and Government in Luanshya to co-operate with all hon. Members of Parliament in their efforts to improve the lives of our people.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Time for political fight is over. We are now hon. Members for the people who voted for us and those who did not vote for us.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Finally, let me state without fear or favour that Luanshya shall rise and, indeed, it shall rise with leadership that is tested and I am ready to provide that leadership.

Mr Speaker, I thank you, and God bless you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!



Mr Mwaanga: Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.


The House adjourned at 1744 hours until 0900 hours on Friday 3rd November, 2006.