Debates - Thursday, 25th June, 2014

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Thursday, 25th June, 2014

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]






The Minister of Health (Dr Kasonde): Mr Speaker, thank you for giving me this opportunity to present a ministerial statement on this topical issue of elephantiasis and, through you, to inform the nation on this disease and the measures that are being implemented to stop its spread.

Sir, Elephantiasis is the common term used to refer to a complication of a disease called Lymphatic Filariasis. Lymphatic Filariasis falls in a group of diseases referred to as Neglected Tropical Diseases. The Neglected Tropical Diseases place an unacceptable burden on the health of the poorest people in Zambia. The main neglected tropical diseases that are common in the country include schiostosomiasis, lymphatic filariasis, human african trypanosomiasis, soil transmitted Helminthes and Trachoma.

Mr Speaker, infection with Lymphatic Filariasis occurs when a mosquito, which has the filarial parasite, bites a person. The parasites enter the body and affect the lymphatic system. Infection is usually acquired in childhood, but the symptoms of the disease may occur later in life, resulting in large amounts of swelling of the arms, legs or genitals.

Sir, globally, lymphatic filariasis affects over 25 million people worldwide. Currently, more than 1 billion people in seventy-three countries around the world are at risk of infection by the parasite. In Zambia, lymphatic filariasis is widespread and in some regions, the prevalence is as high as 25 per cent.

Mr Speaker, considering the magnitude of the problem, the World Health Organisation (WHO) launched the global programme to eliminate lymphatic filariasis in 2000. The goal of this programme is to eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis as a public health problem by 2020. The strategy is based on two key components. These are the following:

(a)    mass drug administration, which interrupts transmission through annual large-scale treatment programmes; and

(b)    mobility management and disability prevention, which alleviates the suffering caused by elephantiasis.

Sir, to achieve interruption of transmission through mass drug administration, the disease is firstly, mapped to know where to conduct the drug administration. In Zambia, a mapping exercise for lymphatic filariasis was carried out between 2003 and 2011. The survey indicated that Lymphatic Filariasis was widely distributed in the country, with 78 per cent of sites having positive cases. In many of the sites, prevalence was rather low. However, a few identified foci had prevalence above 25 per cent. The highest prevalence of above 50 per cent was recorded from Kalabo District, in the Western Province.
Mr Speaker, results from the survey, in particular, the identification of the high endemicity foci, provided an important background for planning an initial implementation of Lymphatic Filariasis control measures in Zambia. Indeed, more recently, in February, 2014, a Zambian scientist, Ms Enala Mwase, of the University of Zambia School of Veterinary Medicine, working with others, published a paper on mapping the geographical distribution of Lymphatic Filariasis in Zambia. The results of the study, upon which the paper was published, showed that lymphatic filariasis was, surprisingly, widespread in Zambia as previously suggested, although, as confirmed, the prevalence was low.

Mr Speaker, following this mapping exercise, the Government commenced annual mass drug administration, which consists of giving single doses, each year, of the drugs, Albendazole and (DEC) Diethylcarbamazine. This mass drug administration will continue for a period of five years to fully interrupt the transmission of infection in the population. This year, with the help of co-operating partners, we have started the control and elimination activities for lymphatic filariasis, with the aim of ensuring that all the people at risk of getting the disease receive the two drugs.

Sir, the drugs are administered to people living in communities where the mapping exercise revealed that the parasite exists. All persons aged two years and above in Zambia, who live in areas where the parasite is in existence and are not either pregnant or chronically ill, should receive the drugs. The mapping exercise revealed that the parasite is existent in eighty-five districts in the country and the population at risk is approximately ten million. I have a list of the districts involved, and I shall lay it on the Table as well as make it available to hon. Members of Parliament, through the usual distribution system.

Mr Speaker, this year, we are implementing the mass drug administration exercise in two phases. During the current first phase, the Eastern, Lusaka, the North-Western and Copperbelt provinces are being treated. However, it is important to note that it is not all the districts that are conducting this exercise because their populations are not at risk. Lusaka District is one of the districts in which the mass drug administration exercise will not be implemented because it is not at risk. Like all other drugs, the drugs being used for mass drug administration exercise have side effects, with the most common ones being dizziness and vomiting. To avoid dizziness, clients are advised to eat before ingesting the drugs.

Sir, may I mention that the side effects are transient and not life-threatening. However, the health workers and community drug distributors who are administering the drugs have been trained in how to identify any side effects and how to manage them.

Mr Speaker, the mass drug administration exercise started on 8th June, 2015, and will run until 2nd July, 2015. However, each implementing district will only conduct the mass administration exercise for a period of ten days. Some districts have already started. Other districts, however, are yet to start. So far, the response from the public has been overwhelming and a number of districts have already exceeded their targets. In districts where the demand has exceeded the available drugs, arrangements are being made to redistribute and reallocate drugs to these areas to ensure that the population at risk is catered for.

Mr Speaker, it is worth noting that lymphatic filariasisis is both preventable and curable. It may require several treatment rounds but ultimately, cure is achievable. However, the unfortunate pathology associated with elephantiasis can present real challenges, with generally nonreversible tissue requiring corrective surgery in most severe debilitating cases.

Finally, Mr Speaker, I would like to encourage any Zambian who seeks further details to go to their respective district community medical office, provincial health office or, indeed, the Department of Mother and Child Health Care at the Ministry of Community Development, Mother and Child Health.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Speaker: Hon. Members are now free to ask questions on points of clarification on the statement given by the hon. Minister of Health.

Mr Pande (Kasempa): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. Minister for that statement. Instead of waiting for us to raise points of order or ask questions, this is what should be happening. I commend the hon. Minister for this and encourage him to continue this trend.

Sir, officials from the Ministry of Health announced on the community radio in Kasempa that they would be conducting door-to-door vaccinations of residents. Is that practicable? Further, if the hon. Minister is able to give me a bonus answer, I would like to find out if we are confident of eliminating this disease by 2020, as prescribed by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, I first want to make sure that we are clear on the word ‘vaccination’. The word ‘vaccination’ has been applied too often and always wrongly on this issue. There is no such thing as vaccination against elephantiasis. There is treatment of the parasite. In some cases, treatment is given to someone who does not have that parasite just to cover a population so that there is no transmission from one to another. At some point, this movement from one person to the other ceases because the cycle has been broken. So, that is not vaccination, but interruption by treatment.

Secondly, whether we can be confident that 2020 is an achievable target, yes, we definitely can be. I am for the language of elimination. All too often it is not because of our inability to eliminate the disease, but the speed at which we are applying our capacities. In this particular case, we have the capacity and drugs. There is no reason, whatsoever, we should not eliminate this cycle by 2020.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Konga (Chavuma): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister, in his statement, has indicated that Lusaka District is not one of the districts to be covered by the treatment process. Suppose an infected person carrying the parasite travels to Lusaka and is bitten by a mosquito which, in turn, bites an uninfected person in Lusaka, will that disease not be transmitted? In this case, does the hon. Minister not think that even the districts which are not covered by the mass drug administration should, maybe, be covered?

Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, theoretically, we could cover every district. Practically, however, the strategy is that where there is very low incidence or prevalence, it seems wasteful to cover everybody with this treatment because those few which will occur sparsely can be identified and dealt with on individual basis.

So, Sir, we believe that there is no need to cover every district when we have estimated, of course, correctly and scientifically, that an area does not have sufficient cases to have a mass drug administration. We are confident that any old case will be identified in due course. The early symptoms can be used to identify such cases. In any case, an assessment of any complaint should include the possibility that this could have been due to lymphatic filariasis and treated accordingly, but not everybody else should get the medication. That is our strategy.

Thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker: Hon. Minister, there was the other aspect of transmission.

Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, what I was trying to imply is that yes, transmission can occur. It means that whoever was infected somewhere else and travels to a non-infected area can pass it through the mosquito to another person. I was only emphasising that it depends on the kind of movements that you anticipate. We anticipate that there will not be adequate movement to cause that.

Indeed, in the scientific research of that condition, Zambia, although quoted as early as 1946 as having cases of lymphatic filariasis, did not recognise a case of a Zambian or North-Rhodesian, as it was in 1946. However, people who had travelled from neighbouring countries are said to have carried the parasite. So, the idea of infected Zambians actually came later. It is true that it can be transmitted by a person who is travelling. It is, however, a question of whether we address that problem by mass treating everybody or identify that problem as a small part of our treatment regime.

Thank you, Sir.

Ms Imenda (Luena): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. Minister for that statement. If I heard him correctly, he mentioned that lymphatic filariasis, trypanosomiasis and malaria are all caused by insects. For example, trypanosomiasis is caused by tse-tse fly. Malaria is caused by the female Anopheles Mosquito. However, the hon. Minister has not told us which mosquito causes this lymphatic filariasis. Is it still the female Anopheles Mosquito which causes it? If so, the fear of transmission is valid. Maybe, if the hon. Minister can give me a bonus answer, it would assist.

Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister mentioned that Kalabo had 50 per cent prevalence of lymphatic filariasis, but when he mentioned the districts or provinces to be covered by the mass drug administration, I did not hear the Western Province. Did I not hear him correctly?

Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, the second issue is easy to answer. I have a list of the districts involved, which I have laid on the Table of the House and is also in hon. Members’ pigeon holes. I did not read through the entire list, but it consists of eighty-five districts. It is available to you.

Mr Speaker, coming back to what type of mosquito transmits lymphatic filariasis, in fact, in addition to what we are used to, there is also the Culex Mosquito. The Culex and Anopheles and are the only two kinds of mosquitoes in Zambia. The third one occurs in other countries, but not in Zambia. So, in this country we are only dealing with those two types of mosquitoes.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Simuusa (Nchanga): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister, in his statement, has informed us that over 10 million people in Zambia are at risk of catching elephantiasis. This raises a lot of concern.

Mr Speaker, I wish to find out from the hon. Minister why there has been concerted efforts, in the past few years, to combat malaria and not elephantiasis. There have been kick out malaria campaigns, insecticide treated mosquito nets distribution and a lot of money in the Budget allocated to eradicating malaria. Why has elephantiasis not received the same attention and why is it that all of a sudden we are having this elephantiasis scare?

Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, this elephantiasis scare has been more of a media concoction than it is real.

Mr Livune: Question!


Dr Kasonde: What happened was that as soon as people talked of vaccination, which was wrong in the first place, then, everybody said, “Well, why do you not vaccinate me as well?” It does not alter the fact that attention has always been paid to this disease. It is true that our Government has particularly identified elephantiasis as a major issue for action. It is, however, not true that action was not being taken before. Action was being taken, but at a low profile.

Mr Speaker, malaria has a high profile and the reason is that it comes, it kills and people see. Elephantiasis only becomes visible at a very late stage when those visible signs lead to stigma. Before that, it may be there for eight to ten years, but show no signs. That is why the treatment does not cause that much excitement, but it is going on. The identification of the high affected rate of 25 per cent or more leads to a mass drug administration, but this does not apply below this rate as only individual cases are dealt with. That is what has happened.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kalila (Lukulu East): Mr Speaker, Neglected Tropical Diseases are a diverse group of diseases with distinct characteristics that thrive mainly in poor communities and there are several of them. The ones that people may know, obviously, are the ones like what my sister here talked about, trypanosomiasis, schistosomiasis, leishmaniasis and, of course, lymphatic filariasis, which we are talking about here. My question arises from the fact that the hon. Minister did mention that we have been surprised by the rather high prevalence of lymphatic filariasis than what we previously thought. Therefore, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether it is the intention of the ministry to inquire, in terms of prevalence, into the other neglected tropical diseases, arising from the lesson that we have learnt from lymphatic filariasis.

Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, I appreciate my colleague’s scientific approach to this issue which is to always ask the question: If this is happening, what is happening to the others? In fact, sleeping sickness is well-established in the language of health services. In particular, the work of the Tropical Diseases Research Centre has published, over and over again, the kind of prevalence and conditions under which we are operating with regard to trypanosomiasis.

So, when the Tropical Diseases Research Centre was established, it was for the purpose of addressing these diseases which I have quoted. Attention from that time has been concentrated on those diseases. Indeed, the programme in the WHO has preferred to be called Diseases of Poverty because that is what is being addressed.

In fact, Mr Speaker, there is information, but the action that follows in the case of trypanosomiasis is not mass drug administration. This kind of visibility that we are seeing is a result of any mass action. Where we have mass action, it leads to people talking about a given subject and, in turn, spread of the word. I think that, perhaps, sleeping sickness needs more attention than it is given, but it is not visible. We know the cases. Sadly, we have recent cases and we are treating them, but it has no visibility. Therefore, it is to do with perception and visibility and not the the lack of attention.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Musokotwane (Liuwa): Mr Speaker, I want to thank the hon. Minister for that statement. Hon. Minister, as you have told us, these mosquitoes cause malaria. Now, we are also being told that they cause this disease that makes people have big legs.


Dr Musokotwane: Mr Speaker, on top of that, these mosquitoes make noise as you are about to sleep ning, ning, ning, ning, ning.


Dr Musokotwane: After all, Sir, no one eats these mosquitoes, no one sells them nor do they have economic value. So, why do you not just kill all of them?


Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, I must acknowledge, with congratulations, the musical ability of the hon. Member, …


Dr Kasonde: … which I certainly do not have.

It is true that the mosquito has been a problem for a long, long time. For years we, by we, I mean the health worker fraternity, have worked to try to eliminate this problem. It seemed to be the correct answer at the beginning. In fact, at the time the WHO was being established, way back in 1946, the concern of what was called International Health was the belief that some countries had gotten rid of these mosquitoes and, therefore, they had to attend more to those who might bring take them back into their countries. So, why not just eliminate the mosquito?

Sir, I am afraid it has not proved to be that easy. Certain substances which were used for spraying were subsequently discovered to have medical consequences and were withdrawn. So, the movement which started with the idea of eliminating the mosquito had to be abandoned because it just was not working.

Mr Speaker, the attack now is on eliminating the parasite, as opposed to the mosquito.  However, I cannot conclude on this subject since we have not yet discovered the final solution. We know that we can eliminate malaria. At least, in Zambia, we are committed to this through what we already know − the spray, which you are referring to, the treatment, where it is necessary and the mosquito net, where it is not being used for other purposes. We have all the tools to eliminate malaria without eliminating the mosquito. So, to go back to the original idea of eliminating the mosquito will be retrospective. I do not think that Zambia should embark on that practical and ambitious route, but which has been shown to be unworkable.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Lubezhi (Namwala): Mr Speaker, I am cognisant of the fact that preventive medication on the Copperbelt is being administered until 29th June, 2015. Would you not extend the deadline, considering the fact that the children who are out in boarding schools will on be back at their homes after 29th June, 2015?

Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, the date of discontinuation of the exercise is determined only by the guidance of ten days of the exercise. For each group, district or community, which is undergoing mass drug administration, the exercise is for ten days. Therefore, it does not concern me if in one community there is talk of stopping on 29th June, 2015. It means that they are finishing their ten days. Other groups may have started a day or a week later. They will count ten days and then stop and wait for next year. This is the arrangement.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Brig-Gen. Dr Chituwo (Mumbwa): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether the same methods that we have used, for instance, in advertising child immunisation weeks in sensitising the community could be used when certain districts are earmarked for this programme so that a large percentage of the population could get the drug in order to reduce the microfilaria in the blood and effectively cut the cycle of transmission.

Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, there will certainly be advantages in combining the two exercises in one, but they are very different. For instance, as I stated, the population involved in the case of lymphatic filariasis is in the age group of two years and above. It means that we shall have different messages for the two activities. However, they can be done in the so-called vaccination week because it is once a year for both of them. They have the similarity of being administered once a year. This has not been done, but I think that it can be taken up by my colleagues in the technical field. For the time being, I should not pronounce on whether we would be able to carry out what the hon. Member has suggested.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Miyanda (Mapatizya): Mr Speaker, I get very worried as I go round Mapatizya and see infected people with families with small children. Hon. Minister, from the time an individual is infected up to ten years, when the serious symptoms show, are there symptoms, in between, that can indicate to that individual, who is in a rural set-up, that he or she could be moving in the direction of being infected by lymphatic filariasis ?

Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, it is difficult to determine, but the immediate symptom is inflammation. The infected person will see an inflammation where they are bitten. There will be heat and redness will begin to appear. An alert health worker will remember what this could be due to. However, if they are not alert enough, they will send the patient home and assure them that it will disappear. The other symptom that can occur in the early stage is itching. Unfortunately, both of the symptoms are difficult to lead the health worker to straight away think of the infection except in the atmosphere which we are now where everybody thinks everything is elephantiasis. In such an atmosphere, it probably will be easy. However, in general, it is not a reliable way to capture every patient.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Muchima (Ikeleng’i): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. Minister for being proactive on issues concerning the health of the people. I do not know whether the records that the Movement for Multi-Party Democracy (MMD) left in the office have been trashed or are still being taken care of.

Mr Speaker, Cuba offered to eradicate malaria and deal with the mosquito nuisance in Zambia for a period of two years, but the moment the MMD left office, the programme died. I do not know whether the hon. Minster is aware about this. If he is not aware, is he willing to co-ordinate with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs so that the programme could be revived?

Dr Kasonde: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for raising this issue. I am aware of the programme. During the World Health Assembly, I had a meeting with the hon. Minister of Health of Cuba and this was one of the issues that we addressed.

Mr Speaker, the proposal of the Cubans, which I am very much aware of, involved payment by Zambians for the workers who had been in Zambia for some time and were going to renew their work permits in Zambia. So, we had to ask ourselves whether we were capable or in favour of paying for this cost. The only answer was yes, if it provides added value. Our conclusion was that we had the means to address this issue of malaria and were not getting added value from this arrangement. Therefore, we did not agree to it although we agreed on issues like human resources in which the Cubans are helping us.

Mr Speaker, Cuba is a good example of countries that were able to eliminate diseases. It can teach and show us a lot. However, in this case, the added value was not there and, therefore, not economically viable, but we continue to collaborate with our colleagues in Cuba on other issues.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.




553. Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central) asked the Vice-President:

(a)    whether the Government was aware that the former First Lady, Dr Christine Kaseba, had been evicted from the premises she had been occupying since she vacated State House;

(b)    if so, under what circumstances she had been evicted;

(c)    where the Former First Lady was currently residing;

(d)    who was responsible for her lodging expenses; and

(e)    how much money was spent on renting her former residence.

The Deputy Minister in the Vice-President’s Office (Mr Bwalya): Mr Speaker, allow me to refer the House to the Benefits of Former Presidents Act No. 21 of 1998, which talks about the benefits of the former presidents, and I will quote Section 2 (b) which states:

“Where a former president who is entitled to the benefits conferred under Sub-section (1) dies while in or after having left office, there shall be assigned to the surviving spouse and children jointly, the furnished house built or bought by the State at a place of the surviving spouse’s choice, if the house referred to in Paragraph (a) of Sub-section (1) has not been assigned to the former president.”

Mr Speaker, the Government is aware that the former First Lady opted to move out of the transit accommodation at No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge in Kabulonga. The transit accommodation at No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge was still available to her until a suitable house was identified for her. In this regard, I would like to inform the House that the former First Lady was not evicted. You may wish to note that the Government, through the Cabinet Office, has had standing arrangements with the proprietors of No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge to house, on temporary basis, former presidents or their spouses, upon leaving State House. This is done while they await a more permanent arrangement. This has been the case with the former First Lady, Mrs Maureen Mwanawasa, and the fourth Republican President, His Excellency, Mr Rupiah Bwezani Banda.

Mr Speaker, in view of the information I have given the House, it is the Government’s understanding that the First Lady was not evicted. Her accommodation at No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge was a contract between the proprietors and the Government. At no time was the Government ever served with an eviction notice.

Mr Speaker, the former First Lady is yet to officially furnish the Government with information regarding her current residence.

Mr Speaker, according to the provisions of the Benefits of Former Presidents Act No. 21 of 1998, which I just quoted, the Government is responsible for, among other things, providing accommodation to former presidents and their spouses.

Mr Speaker, from 15th January, 2015, to 30th June, 2015, the Government has paid No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge, a total of K2,246,547 for full board and lodging.

Mr Speaker, in conclusion, the Government is mindful of the cost implication of housing our presidents in private properties before they move to State House, and immediately after they leave State House. To this effect, I would like to state that the Government has decided to construct two permanent transit houses, one for the in-coming president or president-elect, and another one for the out-going president.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. Minister for his answer.

Mr Speaker, it is evident now that this statute that the hon. Minister has quoted for former presidents’ benefits has become unsustainable under this Patriotic (Front (PF) Government. In one breath, the hon. Minister said that the First Lady was evicted …

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Speaker: Order!

Mr Nkombo: … and then he changed and said that the First Lady was not evicted. I would like to know whether the hon. Minister has conferred with the Secretary to the Cabinet on this matter, as he also issued a statement on this matter. I would also like to know whether the hon. Minister has conferred with the Government Spokesperson, Hon. Chishimba Kambwili, who also issued a statement on the same matter. Also, is the hon. Minister aware that this contract to house the former First Lady at No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge was running monthly, from the 15th of every month? I put it to him that the statements that have been given by himself and the Secretary to the Cabinet are inconsistent with the fact that the owners of No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge wrote a letter to Dr Kaseba, who was not party to the contract, and copied it to the Cabinet to give their intention, in no uncertain terms, to let the former First Lady vacate No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge on account of non- payment of rentals.

 Mr Bwalya: Mr Speaker, first of all, I was very clear that the former First Lady was not evicted. I needed to set the record straight. Secondly, it is also clear that, according to the records and the information that we have, the rentals were paid up to 30th of June, 2015. Therefore, if there was any eviction that was supposed to be done, it could only be done after 30th of June, 2015. Therefore, as we stand now, the rentals that were paid are still effective until after the 30th of June, 2015. If there was miscommunication, and the owner of No.8 Reedbuck Lodge wrote to somebody who was not party to the contract, that was an error and that must be corrected because the contract was between the owner of No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge and the Government. Therefore, Dr Christine Kaseba was not party to that contract. There is no inconsistency in terms of rentals and there is no inconsistency in terms of the events, as they have been stated both in the press statement that the Secretary to the Cabinet issued and the answer that has been given here.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Namulambe (Mpongwe): Mr Speaker, considering the fact that the hon. Minister has acknowledged that the proprietor of No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge made a mistake to address the eviction letter to Dr Kaseba, thereby causing embarrassment to the Government, would it not be prudent for the Government to apologise to Dr Kaseba for the embarrassment caused because she was not the person with whom the contract was entered into?

The Minister of Justice and Acting Leader of Government Business (Dr Simbyakula): Mr Speaker, we are in receipt of a letter of apology from the proprietor of No. 8 Reedbuck Lodge, which we have discussed with the former First Lady.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe (Chadiza): Mr Speaker, this is a very embarrassing situation, indeed, because we need to look after our leaders very well.  

Sir, I would like to find out from Her Honour the Vice-President whether this Government has gone to the trouble of discussing the way forward with the former First Lady instead of saying that it does not know where she is staying.

Dr Simbyakula: Mr Speaker, we are in contact with the former First Lady.

Mr Mwila: Yes!

Dr Simbyakula: Let us not make a meal out of this issue. We are discussing with her and you know that she is a very reasonable person. There was miscommunication over the whole issue, but we have gotten to the bottom of it and we are working on it.

We have already looked for a house which will be vacant by Tuesday, 30th June, 2015, by the outgoing World Bank Representative, and the feedback from the former First Lady and family is that they may be interested in taking up occupancy of this property.  So, life is proceeding. Let us not make things difficult for her, ...

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Simbyakula: … unnecessarily so. This was just a simple mistake.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Dr Kalila (Lukulu East): Mr Speaker, the official response given on the Floor of this House, as regards the whereabouts of our former First Lady, is that this Government does not know her new residence. This is very worrying considering that security and everything else that is attendant to looking after our First Lady has to be provided.

Mr Speaker, is it not worrying that the entire Government machinery does not know where our current First Lady is residing?

Hon. Government Members: Former!

Dr Kalila: Former.

Dr Simbyakula: Mr Speaker, I have mentioned that we are in contact with the former First Lady. We know where she is and we are discussing with her. Initially, when she left, we did not know because there was some miscommunication. However, we are now communicating and everything will be alright. Let us not politicise this thing. She is our sister.


Dr Simbyakula: His Excellency President Lungu was unequivocal and made it abundantly clear in his inaugural statement that his Government would look after our sister and we intend to do so.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Lubezhi (Namwala): Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister denied the fact that the former First Lady was evicted. Meanwhile, the hon. Minister has also told us that the Government is in receipt of a letter of apology from the proprietor of the lodge. Are we being told that the former First Lady was not being sincere when she said that she had been evicted?

Dr Simbyakula: Mr Speaker, to begin with, the tenant’s agreement was between the proprietor of the lodge and the Government and not the proprietor and the tenant. Therefore, any eviction notice should have come to the Government. In this case, the proprietor sent the eviction notice to the tenant, who happens to be the former First Lady. She decided to move out because of that miscommunication. Now, we are saying that we have resolved this matter.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mufalali (Senanga): Mr Speaker, why are there so many contradictions in the statements made by the hon. Deputy Minister and the hon. Minister? Have you been to see the former First Lady or you are just in touch over the phone and you do not know where she is?

Dr Simbyakula: Mr Speaker, communication can either be physical or through electronic means. A person can communicate and speak to another person using a phone. I have stated that we are talking with the former First Lady, who is a very reasonable person. So, please, do not attribute things that will cause confusion between her and the Government because we get on very well with her. She is being very reasonable about this.

I thank you, Sir.

Mrs Mazoka (Pemba): Mr Speaker, since the Government does not seem to know where the former First Lady is presently residing physically, amidst all the contradictions, I would like to find out whether she is still enjoying her benefits of State security, and if so, how, since the Government does not know where she is.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Simbyakula: Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister read out the entitlements of the former First Lady and we know where she is now.

Hon. Opposition Members: Now?

Dr Simbyakula: Yes. As I told you,  …


Mr Speaker: Order!

Dr Simbyakula: … we have been communicating with her. We do communicate and we know where she is now and she is enjoying these benefits, in accordance with this particular piece of legislation. I do not see why our colleagues are trying to make a problem out of this.

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Antonio (Kaoma Central): Mr Speaker, we would like to know exactly where the former First Lady is staying at the moment.

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Sichone: Question!

Mr Speaker: Order!

Dr Simbyakula: Mr Speaker, she is somewhere …


Mr Speaker: Order!

Dr Simbyakula: We have been informed that she is somewhere in Libala.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sing’ombe (Dundumwezi): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister said that a contract was signed between the Government and the proprietor and clearly, the proprietor breeched that contract. What is the Government doing about this person who has embarrassed our former First Lady?

Dr Simbyakula: Mr Speaker, we will look at the contract and see what remedies are provided there under and proceed there from.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Livune (Katombola): Mr Speaker, can this Government tell the nation how long the former First Lady will squat wherever she is before a reasonable place is found?

Mr Speaker: I think that question has been answered. Hon. Member for Sinda …


Mr Speaker: That is the last question by the way.

Mr L. Ngoma (Sinda): Mr Speaker, misleading this House is a very serious offence under our Standing Orders. The hon. Deputy Minister said that the Government does not know where the former First Lady is. After much trouble, the hon. Minister has told us that her whereabouts are known, but he was not categorical in his answer. Is the information that is in the public domain that the former First Lady is at a house near Break Point Bar in Libala true? Is that where she is? Further, is the hon. Minister officially withdrawing the statement by the hon. Deputy Minister?

Dr Simbyakula: Mr Speaker, the mother to the former First Lady lives in Libala and that is where the former First Lady is.

I thank you, Sir.


554.    Mr Simuusa (Nchanga) asked the hon. Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development:

(a)    whether the Government was aware of any intentions by Konkola Copper Mines to shut down some of its operations; and

(b)    if so, what measures had been taken to prevent the loss of employment.

The Deputy Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development (Mr Musukwa): Mr Speaker, the House may wish to know that the Government is not aware of any intentions by Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) to close any of its operations because it has not communicated anything over such undertakings. Since we are not aware of part (a) of the question, we cannot give an answer for part (b) of the question.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Simuusa: Mr Speaker, as we speak, miners in Nchanga are receiving letters of redeployment from certain operations to other operations and there is information that certain sections and even operations at Nchanga Open Pit are going to be shut down.

Sir, why has the situation where letters, which have caused apprehension and uncertainty amongst the employees and the miners been allowed? This has caused grave concern in Chingola at the moment. Why is the Government not aware about the situation and why has such a situation been allowed? Is the hon. Minister not aware that letters have been issued to that effect?

Mr Musukwa: Mr Speaker, I thank Hon. Simuusa for that good question. He is, indeed, a true representative of our people on the Copperbelt, Chingola in particular.

Hon. Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Musukwa: Sir, the KCM, in principle, has four units which are Konkola, Nchanga, Nkana and Nampundwe. The KCM enjoys the jurisdiction of operation within these units. The Ministry of Mines, Energy and Water Development has issued a mining licence to the KCM which spells the condition of grants on which it operates. In an event of the KCM suspending any operations, by law and in consistency with the Mines and Minerals Act, it is supposed to inform the hon. Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development of such undertakings.

Mr Speaker, to that effect, the KCM has not given us that indication. Therefore, if the KCM is involved with such undertakings, then, it is breaking the law. The ministry will verify these reports and ensure that the law takes its course.

Further, I would like to assure Hon. Simuusa and our workers in Nchanga that the Patriotic Front (PF) Government will work to ensure that its workers are protected and that they enjoy the benefits of this Government.

I thank you, Sir.

Prof. Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda): Mr Speaker, in his response, the hon. Minister said that the Government was not aware of the situation prevailing at the KCM. On the flip side, now that the Government has been made aware, through this question, what will it do about this problem?

Mr Speaker: I thought that question had been answered.



555.    Mr Simuusa asked the Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development:

(a)    whether the Government had allowed Konkola Copper Mines to import copper concentrates from the Republic of Chile;

(b)    if so, what the arsenic content of the concentrate was;

(c)    what the safe and permissible arsenic content level of the imported concentrate was; and

(d)    what measures the Government had taken to mitigate the effects of the arsenic contaminations, if any, in the imported concentrates.

Mr Musukwa: Mr Speaker, the Government, through the Mines Safety Department, issued to the KCM an import permit to import in excess of over 7,000 tonnes of copper concentrates from Chile under import number IMP/016/15 and IMP/1016/15. Extensions were issued on 16th February, 2015, and 20th May, 2015, respectively.

Sir, the arsenic content of the concentrate which is coming from Chile is 4 per cent. There is no prescribed safe and permissible arsenic content level in concentration. However, under the environmental Management Act of 2011, the safe limit of arsenic in air and effluent are 0.5 mg per normal cubic metre and 0.05 mg per liter, respectively.

Mr Speaker, the Government has instructed the KCM not to commence treatment of concentrates from Chile until appropriate measures acceptable by the Government, which are being put in place by the Mines Safety Department, are adhered to.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Simuusa: Mr Speaker, in various fora and media, several concerned citizens, watch groups and whistle blowers have raised alarm as regards the arsenic content in this concentrate coming from Chile being imported by the Konkola Copper Mines (KCM).

Sir, a while ago, the hon. Minister said that there is no safe limit of arsenic in the air and yet, in the answer, he stated that the safe limits of arsenic in air and effluent are 0.5 mg per liter per normal meter cubed and 0.05 mg per liter. Despite these concerns, why has the Government remained silent on this very serious and sensitive issue? Who is responsible for monitoring these concentrates that are coming into the country vis-à-vis all the monitoring limits?

Mr Musukwa: Mr Speaker, I want to repeat my answer. There is no prescribed safe and permissible arsenic content level in concentrates. I went further to say that, however, under the Environmental Management Act of 2011, the safe limits of arsenic in air and effluent are 0.5 mg per normal cubic metre and 0.05 mg per liter respectively. My reference to the provisions of the Act by the Zambia Environment Management Agency (ZEMA) is principally dealing with the effluent in the air and also in liquids. By this, I am talking about the issue of this discharge being set into the environment.

Sir, principally, in terms of the current scenario, even the copper concentrates that we are currently treating from within our country contain arsenic substances. I know that you cannot teach the bishop the Lord’s Prayer. Hon. Simuusa knows very well that, in fact, arsenic materials or elements are naturally occurring in these concentrates. In fact, they are in many contents. We also have substances such as sulphur and mercury. In Zambia, the kind of concentrates that we have, have been averaging not in excess of 1 per cent. That is why when we, as a Government of the Republic of Zambia, through our Mines Safety Department, noticed that these concentrates are in excess of above 1 per cent, which is to the tune of 4 per cent, instructed the KCM against proceeding with the processing of these materials until a safe mode is put in place. I want to put it emphatically clear that the Government, through the Mines Safety Department, is in charge to ensure that this undertaking is achieved.

Sir, Hon. Simuusa will agree with me that, indeed, the arsenic substances are quite dangerous to human life, including aquatic and plant life. That is why the Government of the Republic of Zambia has asked colleagues at the KCM to ensure that a proper safety mode, to be supervised by the Mines Safety Department, is put in place before it can begin and continue to process these materials.

Mr Speaker, I want to add further that the Government allowed the KCM to import the concentrates because of the fall in production. As you are aware, the KCM has built up a state-of-the art facility, a smelter, which is currently operating at 50 per cent. It is very detrimental in terms of its cost profile. In order to ensure that we upgrade the feed stock for this smelter, the KCM is looking for various options in order to ensure that it gets the feed to support the smelter. This has also been negated by the fact that Kansanshi Mine, one of its customers, has also built its own facility. So, the KCM is struggling to feel up the gap. This is also intended to ensure that the KCM continues to employ our people and provide a future for our people in Chingola, Chililabombwe, Kitwe and Nampundwe. In doing so, we will not subject people to unsafe mining methods.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, why should the KCM continue importing copper concentrates from Chile? Does it mean that the copper ore in its mining area is depleted? Why can it not invest in its mining area?

Mr Speaker: Order! That question has been answered.

Hon. Government Members: Yes!

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, I would also like to thank the hon. Minister who is always on top of things.


Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, after these copper concentrates are processed, they are exported. Now, is this copper exported as Zambian copper or Chilean Copper?

Mr Musukwa: Mr Speaker, once this copper is brought into our country, it becomes the property of the Republic of Zambia and we aggregate it to our production. That is why we are processing it here in Zambia.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mufalali: Mr Speaker, why was due diligence not done in order to ascertain the levels of arsenic in the concentrate that was to be imported?

Mr Musukwa: Mr Speaker, I belaboured the point to explain at great length the aspect of these arsenic substances. I even used my skills from where I used to practice.


Mr Musukwa: Mr Speaker, I have made it abundantly clear that these substances are actually found in all the concentrates, including the ones that we have in Zambia. The difference is the levels and the grades. Since they are coming from a different profile, we have a higher grade. By the way, this is the concentrate that has developed Chile. I am sure you are aware that Chile is a country like Zambia. It is on top of things in terms of production. I think that the cost profile gave an impetus for the KCM to go this way. In our quest to do that, we will ensure that it falls within the range that is not harmful to our people.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chishimba (Kamfinsa): Mr Speaker, I think you will agree with me that each time on your Order Paper, the Konkola Copper Mines (KMC) has topped the list of all the mines in Zambia in terms of operational challenges. Is your ministry not really worried about this? I want to find out if your ministry will actually take your technocrats to curb the challenges which the KCM is faced with in areas of its operations so that you find a win-win situation?

Mr Musukwa: Mr Speaker, what the Government is doing is to work with the KCM and ensure that we arrive at sustainable operations that are going to be win-win for both the Government and the people. The hon. Member may wish to note that the KCM has, indeed, been on the top of our agenda because it is actually the second largest employer in the Republic of Zambia. It is a big entity and its viability is the Government’s concern. We monitor its operations everyday to ensure that it is on top of things in terms of ensuring that it supports employment and look for new resources. For example, in Nchanga underground, the KCM has two large oil bodies whose development we would like it to concentrate on so that it guarantees the future employment of our people.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mumba (Mambilima): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out why the licensing was left open-ended for the KCM to get the concentrates from across the Atlantic Ocean instead of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) which has the same profile.

Mr Musukwa: Mr Speaker, principally, the decision to look for raw material is a business decision that the company undertakes. You will also be interested to know that, for a long time, the KCM was also relying on stock feed that was from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). However, the Government of the DRC put in place measures to stop that kind of importation into Zambia and that is what has actually created these gaps.

Sir, it is my belief that the KCM made a business decision to import from Chile. Our concern, as a Government, which we are emphasising on is that the product must be safe for our people. The ministry, through the mines safety, is overseeing that operation.

I thank you, Sir.





The Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mrs Mwanakatwe): Mr Speaker, I beg to present the Mines and Minerals Development Bill, 2015. The objects of this Bill are to:

(a)    revise the Law relating to the exploration for mining and processing of minerals;

(b)    provide for safety, health and environmental protection in the mining operations;

(c)    provide for the establishment of the Mining Appeals Tribunal;

(d)    repeal and replace the Mines and Minerals Development Act, 2008; and

(e)    provide for matters connected with or incidental to the foregoing.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Speaker: The Bill stands referred to the Committee on Economic Affairs, Energy and Labour. The Committee is required to submit its report on the Bill to the House by Friday, 17th July, 2015.

Hon. Members who wish to make submissions on the Bill are free to do so within the programme of work of the Committee.

I thank you.



The Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mrs Mwanakatwe): Mr Speaker, I beg to present the Gold Trade Repeal Bill, 2015. The objects of this Bill are to:

(a)    repeal the Gold Trade Act, 1912; and

(b)    provide for matters connected with or incidental to the foregoing.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Speaker: The Bill stands referred to the Committee on Economic Affairs, Energy and Labour. The Committee is required to submit its report on the Bill to the House by Friday, 17th July, 2015.

Hon. Members who wish to make submissions on the Bill are free to do so within the programme of work of the Committee.




Mr Hamudulu (Siavonga): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that this House do adopt the Report of the Committee on Economic Affairs, Energy and Labour for the Fourth Session of the Eleventh National Assembly laid on the Table of the House on 16th June, 2015.

Mr Speaker: Is the Motion seconded?

Mr Simuusa (Nchanga): Mr Speaker, I beg to second the Motion.

Mr Hamudulu: Mr Speaker, in line with its terms of reference, as set out in the Standing Orders, your Committee considered a number of topical issues during this session. They are set out in the report.

Sir, in order to get deeper insight into the topics under consideration, your Committee invited written memoranda and oral submissions from various stakeholders. Your Committee also undertook a foreign tour to Uganda and held a public hearing in Lusaka.

Mr Speaker, your Committee’s findings are highlighted in your Committee’s report. It is my sincere hope that hon. Members of Parliament have taken time to read it. I will, therefore, only concentrate on some of the salient issues arising from the study.

Sir, the first topical issue tackled by your Committee during this session was the electricity sub-sector, with specific reference to the restructuring of the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO) Limited.

Mr Speaker, the importance of the electricity sub-sector to national development cannot be over-emphasised. All the stakeholders who interacted with your Committee pointed out this fact. However, the electricity sub-sector continues to face many challenges that have a bearing on national development. Among these challenges is the low rate of access which stands at 27 per cent of the total population. The non-cost reflective tariff structure, insufficient generation capacity and aged transmission and distribution infrastructure, to mention, but a few.

Sir, at the heart of all these challenges is the vertically integrated ZESCO Limited which continues to provide unsatisfactory service to its clients. It is, therefore, not surprising that consecutive Governments have made attempts to improve the performance of the energy industry, electricity sub-sector and the performance of ZESCO Limited, in particular.

Mr Speaker, let me point out that for more than three decades, there have been calls or concerns from society, including the Government, for the restructuring of ZESCO. In 2003, the Government decided that the best route to address ZESCO’s problems was commercialisation of the entity. However, it is clear that commercialisation did not achieve the envisaged results, as ZESCO’s performance continues to leave much to be desired.

Sir, after having carefully considered the submissions made by various stakeholders, including individual members of the public, your Committee came to the conclusion that the Government needs to take a bold decision and begin to reduce its stake in ZESCO by unbundling the power utility.

Mr Speaker, your Committee strongly urges the Government to begin this process without undue delay. Notwithstanding this, your Committee recognises the fact that the Government is an important stakeholder in the electricity sub-sector.

Therefore, Sir, your Committee wishes to emphasise the fact that while it is necessary for the private sector to have greater involvement in the sub-sector, the Government should remain a major investor and stakeholder.

Mr Speaker, the second topic that was considered by your Committee during this session was the study on the National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA), with specific reference to the debt that is owed to the institution by the Government, grant aided institutions, local authorities and other statutory bodies. Your Committee also received submissions on the status of the Zambia National Provident Fund liabilities.

Mr Speaker, the debt owed to NAPSA has the potential to affect the long-term sustainability of the pension scheme. While your Committee notes that efforts have been made to reduce the Central Government debt, it appears that nothing is being done to address the amount owed by grant aided institutions, local authorities, parastatals and other statutory bodies. This is despite proposals that have been forwarded to the Government on how the debt can be settled. Your Committee, therefore, urges the Government to expeditiously budget for the settlement of the debt owed to NAPSA.

Sir, your Committee learnt, with great concern, that one of the reasons that the debt to NAPSA was so high was that an employer was liable to a penalty of 20 per cent of the defaulted contribution. This penalty was set when the inflationary parameters in the economy were beyond 20 per cent. In relation to the Government debt, penalties accounted for over 90 per cent of the amount owed. While recognising the fact that NAPSA needs to enforce collection of contributions and that the penalty rate was set in order to encourage compliance, your Committee is of the view that these penalties are excessively high and punitive and require urgent review.

Mr Speaker, with regard to the Zambia National Provident Fund liabilities, your Committee is pleased to note the efforts that have been made by NAPSA to begin to dismantle these liabilities and to pay beneficiaries. It is your Committee’s hope that the Zambia National Provident Fund benefits will be paid out to all beneficiaries in the shortest possible time, as these people have been subjected to uncertainty for too long.

Sir, your Committee, as part of its programme of work, also received submissions on Zambia’s status vis-à-vis the economic partnership agreements. For the brief information of this hon. House, economic partnership agreements are free trade agreements which are being negotiated between the European Union (EU) and African, Caribbean and pacific regions. Zambia initialed the interim economic partnership agreement on 6th December, 2007, without a market access offer and on 30th September, 2008, initialed her market access offer. The country is fully involved in economic partnership agreement negotiations. Your Committee was informed that the Government is exercising maximum caution before it commits to signing the full economic partnership agreements in order to ensure that the final outcome is in the best interest of the country. Your Committee supports this move by the Government.

In conclusion, Sir, your Committee wishes to express its gratitude to you, Mr Speaker, for the guidance rendered during the session. Your Committee is also grateful to the witnesses who appeared before it for their co-operation and input into the deliberations.

Lastly, I also extend your Committee’s appreciation to the Clerk of the National Assembly of Zambia and her staff for the services rendered to the Committee during the session.

Mr Speaker, I beg to move.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

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

Mr Simuusa: Now, Sir.

Mr Speaker, I beg to second the Motion urging the House to adopt the Report of the Committee on Economic Affairs, Energy and Labour for the Fourth Session of the Eleventh National Assembly laid on the Table of the House on Tuesday, 16th June, 2015.

Sir, the Chairperson has already highlighted the major issues contained in your Committee’s report and, therefore, in seconding the Motion, I will be brief in my comments.

Mr Speaker, as the country is grappling with the non-cost reflective tariffs in the electricity sector, it implies that the consumers of electricity, especially the mines and other major consumers, may not be necessarily paying adequately for the power being consumed. Tariffs structures continue to be affected by long-term power purchase agreements such as the bulk supply agreement between ZESCO and the Copperbelt Energy Corporation.

Sir, also connected to the tariff structure is the anticipated coming on board of several power generation projects by independent power producers or through the public-private partnerships (PPPS) with ZESCO as the public partner and off-taker. These issues are of concern to your Committee because there is the anticipated loss to close to US$479.5 million per year that will arise out of the purchase of power by ZESCO as the sole off-taker. While your Committee is aware of the legal issues that surround the agreements, I want to categorically state that the country should be bold enough and urge the Government to closely look at these bulk supply and purchase agreements. We should also be bold enough to address the issues surrounding the efficiency of operations of ZESCO. This will greatly assist ZESCO’s financial position which is currently not favourable.

Sir, you Committee has no doubt that the Government is committed to the development of the country and will, therefore, address the concerns that have been highlighted in your Committee’s report.

Mr Speaker, I beg to second.

Mr Mutelo (Lukulu West): Mr Speaker, I will equally be brief.

Sir, in supporting the report of your Committee, I will speak on the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO) and the social security schemes authorities that take care of workers and their benefits.

Mr Speaker, if ZESCO will be unbundled just for the sake of doing it, then, we will have problems with electricity tariffs. If you unbundle ZESCO in a hurried manner, the cost of generation, transmission and supply of power will definitely go up and the end result will be a hike in the tariffs.
Sir, your Committee went to Uganda and it learnt something from that country relating to the unbundling of its power utility firm. That is what your Committee’s report is saying in its recommendations. However, ZESCO cannot be left the way it is because it has problems. The first problem is the Government itself. The Government owes ZESCO a lot of money. Apart from the Government, there are also Government institutions that are owing the power utility firm money. Unfortunately, ZESCO cannot disconnect power from those institutions.  As long as the Government continues to owe ZESCO huge sums of money in unpaid bills, the problems that ZESCO is facing will not end. So, it is up to the Government to ensure that it pays for power supply so that sensitive institutions like hospitals and army barracks are not cut- off. However, if the debt continues to accumulate and the infrastructure at ZESCO gets older, then, the problem will not be solved. That is why the stakeholders are saying that it should be unbundled.

Mr Speaker, there is also a danger in putting ZESCO into private hands. The danger is that rural places will be forgotten. No private investor will want to connect Mitete to the power grid. So, since it is a burden for the Government, we would still want it to take power to Mitete just like it has done in other places. So, there should be care on how we handle ZESCO issues. For now, it is up to the Government to settle the bills with ZESCO.

Sir, we are informed that the load shedding being experienced is due to reduced water levels, and yet load shedding is there even when the country experiences floods. However, now the Government wants to use the poor rain pattern the country experienced as an excuse.


Mr Mutelo: Sir, the Government is saying the water levels are low. What about last year when there was enough rain? Why did the country still have load shedding? So, it has nothing to do with the water levels, but how the Government handles ZESCO.

Mr Speaker, let me now talk about the remittance of funds to the National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA). Here is a pay slip showing deductions, and yet the money is not being remitted to the scheme. So, you have a situation where someone has retired and because their pay slip is showing that money was being deducted, they go to NAPSA and find that there is no money for them. So, who is to blame? Is it not the one holding onto the money of that beneficiary? So, when money is not remitted, the scheme will have no money to sustain its operations and later on give, …

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours.

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

Mr Mutelo: Mr Speaker, before business was suspended, I was talking about NAPSA contributions and the failure by workers to get their money after retiring because someone who should have remitted those funds to NAPSA did not do so. Just like in the case of ZESCO, the ones who bear the consequences are the end users. It takes years for a person who worked in the Civil Service to get their retirement benefits. There are people who travel to Lusaka from far-flung areas just to get their benefits. It takes months before they receive any form of payment, and usually these people keep being told to go back the following day. So, it is important to ensure that money that is deducted from people’s salaries is remitted to the schemes for the good of the beneficiaries. I emphasise that the Government and other relevant institutions should take note and address this matter. As the saying goes, “Give Caesar what belongs to Caesar”.

Mr Speaker, as regards economic affairs, it is gratifying to see that Zambia is part and parcel of the global village. There are a lot of international agreements with other countries in terms of economical affairs. However, when we are signing these agreements, we have to know whether they are for our benefit or our partner’s. For example, Zambia always seems to be on the losing side as regards our trading agreements. Others always take advantage of us when we are making these agreements.

Sir, I, therefore, urge various ministries to ensure that the agreements that we enter into are of economic benefit to our country. Otherwise, we will be entering into agreements that do not support local industries. For example, fish caught in Lukulu cannot be sold outside Zambia, but the fish from China will find market here in Zambia. As some hon. Members of Parliament would say, let these agreements be based on a win-win situation. Let us not go into these agreements blindly.

Mr Speaker, by the way, the Government is in the process of reviewing the retirement age for the Civil Service. It has been suggested that the early retirement age should be fifty-five years old while the normal retirement age should be sixty years old. Somebody who retires at fifty-five years would get 66 per cent of their benefits immediately they retire. When you retire at sixty years, you would be given 10 per cent of whatever you have accrued and the 90 per cent remains with the pension scheme. Notwithstanding the fact that you are aging, the remaining 90 per cent will be paid over a certain period of time. If it so happens that you die, nobody knows where the money goes. So, a review process is underway and we have to pay attention to what is happening. Actually, there are three ages for retirement that have been proposed. These are fifty-five, sixty and sixty-five.

Sir, I would like to urge the powers that be to not only think of the situation today, but beyond. Let us think outside the box. This entails engaging in deep reflection on what is happening in this country.  As I wind up, let me say that if we are not careful, it will be ‘a Phiri anabwela kuchokela ku Harare’.

With those few words, thank you very much.


Mr Speaker: What do you mean by that?

Mr Mutelo: Mr Speaker, it means Mr Phiri came all the way from Harare.

Mr Muchima (Ikeleng’i): Mr Speaker, I wish to thank the mover and seconder of the Motion for this wonderful report. I will concentrate mostly on the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO). Time and again, we have been assured, as hon. Members of Parliament and nation at large, that there will be no more load-shedding, following the upgrading of Kafue Gorge and other power stations. What has happened, however, is contrary. We do not know exactly what goes on at ZESCO.

Mr Speaker, according to this report, ZESCO is facing financial difficulties, which I personally do not want to believe or agree with. What has happened is that ZESCO has been restricted to a monopolistic system or behaviour. It is not subjected to competition and as such, it cannot improve on its efficiency.

Mr Speaker, in Zambia, we have many big rivers that can generate electricity. However, whoever wants to set up an electricity generating project is required to sign a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with ZESCO, which is supposed to be a competitor. ZESCO does not give these agreements easily and as such, even if feasibility studies have taken place in various places, we are not able to generate electricity so that we can meet the growing demand for electricity in this country.

Mr Speaker, when I was a boy, Zambia’s population was only 2 million people. Today, we are almost 14 million, but we are not seeing any improvement at all with regard to the power sector. This situation is worse for the North-Western Province, which is still getting its power from diesel generated machines. During campaigns, we hear of being connected to the national grid or this and that is being done about the situation. After elections, such stories fade away.  

Mr Speaker, in the North-Western Province, especially in Mwinilunga and Ikeleng’i, where I come from, we have very big rivers. Three quarters of the water in Zambia comes from that place, but there is nothing that is happening in terms of power connectivity. I wonder if this has to do with the management of ZESCO or something else. The problem with ZESCO is this; it is being kept as a parastatal which is being used for political manoeuvers. I am not relating it to the current Government. Even the United National Independence Party (UNIP) and Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) Governments could have engaged in this. It is a window or conduit where money is used for political games. I am asking that ZESCO to be liberated. Let there be competition in the power sector.

Mr Hamusonde: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Let licences be given to other interested entities so that they can compete with ZESCO. That way, Zambia will see electricity everywhere. It is wrong to generate electricity in Siavonga when villagers there do not see any electricity at all. The people in Mwinilunga, where the water that is used to generate electricity comes from, do not see any electricity at all, and yet they are the owners of the water that goes all around this country. There is something wrong somewhere.

Mr Chilangwa: They are the owners of the water?

Mr Muchima: Yes. If we cut the trees from that river you think you can have water in your constituency. I am telling you that we are the owners of the water, just as we are saying that we are the owners of Zambia …

Hon. Government Members: Question!

Mr Speaker: Order!

Hon. Member, please, address the Speaker.

Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, we have to create efficiency in this organisation.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: We have to move away from the colonial way of thinking where the Government owned such institutions. The Government is just supposed to superintend over the economy and not run enterprises.

Mr Speaker, let us get an example of the United Bus Company of Zambia (UBZ). We used to sleep at the Kitwe Main Bus Station (KMB) those days when going to school, but when the MMD came into power, it liberalised the transport sector. Today, buses look for people.

Ms Imenda: Yes!

Mr Muchima: However, to do the same thing on ZESCO, there is a lock. The reason behind this must be that there is something the Government is doing. ZESCO makes a lot of money. When you look at the packages of their officers who retire, you cannot compare it with anybody here. They get good money. If you say that it is a company which is not doing well, where does it get money to pay its retirees so much in terminal benefits? If you do not pay for the electricity, your power supply gets disconnected.

Mr Speaker, what I am saying here is that this load shedding can be avoided in many ways. The best way will be for us to liberalise the company. You cannot give a competitor to authorise another company to come onto the industry. That is completely wrong. Let responsibility to authorise be given to another wing.

Mr Speaker, time and again we have talked, but for one to generate electricity, it is almost impossible. Like in the North-Western, Chavuma, Kabompo at Chikata, there are several points which can generate electricity for this country and we would have reduced on the demand. We could even export. We should not only depend on copper exports. We could even depend on the exportation of electricity to countries like South Africa and Namibia, but we are placing our policies wrongly. We always think otherwise.

Mr Speaker, it is like when you go hunting, animals are in one direction, but we are aiming in the wrong direction. Let us re-think. Let us think twice. We have a lot of resources in this country, but we have never sat down to think and re-calculate our economy. We have a lot of economists there (pointing at the Government Bench). Let us think and help ZESCO. ZESCO is one giant institution that can give us money. Not only ZESCO, but also our water, our natural resource, can be turned into a source of a lot of resources that can give us both foreign exchange which can reduce even this load shedding. This load shedding is especially worse in the compounds of Lusaka. It is terrible. Everyday people do not have power.

Mr Speaker, in Kasempa where Hon. Kabinga Pande comes from, in the North-Western Province, it is only Solwezi and Kasempa that are connected to the national grid. The rest of us cannot even talk about it. People only see power lines, but there is no power. Those of us in Ikeleng’i who use diesel power are better off than our colleagues in Kasempa for we have power until midnight. It is terrible. As a Government, you took over power from us so that you could improve on the efficiency. We want to see this efficiency. I would have been grateful if the money you are borrowing was to improve on electricity generation …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: … in every district and in every province. Not where you borrow and the borrowed money ends up in your pockets for campaign purposes.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: During campaigns, there is a lot of money around. Use that money to build infrastructure ...


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

Mr Mucheleka: Ikala panshi!

Mr Muchima: … that we can utilise and benefit.

Mr Speaker: Hon. Member, please, do not debate your colleagues.

Mr Muchima: I oblige, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker: Debate the Motion before us.

Mr Muchima: I oblige, Mr Speaker.

What I was simply saying is that let us sit down and review how we can tap the resources and use them to benefit this nation. This nation has so many resources, but we are not utilising them to the maximum.

Mr Speaker, let the Government dismantle ZESCO. This issue of changing the leadership at ZESCO depending on political leadership should change. Those are technocrats. Leave them to do their work. The case should not be that every time we go for an election then, a change of leadership at ZESCO should follow. When the MMD falls, even the Managing Director for ZESCO also goes. This should not be the case. The leadership at ZESCO should not be tied to political leadership, but to production. If the leadership is able to produce results, keep them in their jobs. They should not fall together with the political leadership. The fact that leadership changes in accordance with a change of Government means that the appointments are made for a purpose. That should be stopped. Let us encourage our people to work efficiently so that our children and our future can be sustained.

Mr Speaker, if we calculated properly, sat down and carried Zambia on from where the MMD left it, it would have been a wonderful and beautiful country today. However, because we have not sat down to use the calculator properly, the plane we are on which we are flying has lost campus and has gone in the wrong direction.

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

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Speaker, let me begin by making a declaration that I am a Member of this Committee and having chaired this Committee for many years, I have a fair understanding of our power situation.

Sir, this is a complex subject and I want to be very careful in the way I am going to place my debate, but invite hon. Members to the recommendation of the Committee. The Committee made a non committal recommendation to the effect that we have studied; we went to do some benchmarking on experiences of unbundling a power utility company in Uganda.

Sir, to begin with, you can go world over and find out which country has completely let go of a power utility company. I want to sight an example of the British Telecom, a big company. It is only obvious why the British have held on to the majority of shares to that company. Experiments have been done and excruciating experiences have been had by certain countries regarding the issue of unbundling a power utility company.

Mr Speaker, in Uganda, I think that it has caused a lot of pain for the citizens of that country, on one hand, but in Ghana, it appears that the model that they used seem to be working. So, in approaching this matter, there is a need to be cautious. There is a need to exercise a lot of caution. There is a need for consultation. There is a need for consensus. There is a need for taking careful steps in arriving at a decision whether to unbundle ZESCO or not.

Sir, taking you back to the short history of post 1991. There was an idea to privatise ZESCO. It was floated, but nobody came to buy. The reason this was so was the multi-faceted to include the state of the infrastructure for ZESCO and also include the reflectivity of the tariffs that ZESCO was charging at that particular time. Of course, the issue of monopoly is one of those things that we ought to look at carefully in arriving at what we should do.

Sir, against the backdrop of the desire to privatise after some many years, the Government of the Republic of Zambia, at that time, settled for commercialisation of the utility company. Commercialisation really meant that they had to go into Power Rehabilitation Projects (PRP). They had to go into the re-profiling of the engines or turbines in the power station in order to increase the generating capacity.

Mr Speaker, we saw how the upgrade of both the Kafue Gorge Power Station and the Kariba North Bank recorded minimal improvement on service delivery as a result of demand outstripping supply. We have also suffered extenuating circumstances such as the weather pattern because we depend, by and large, on hydro-power.

Mr Speaker, fortunately, Zambia sits on water bodies. Like some have argued before, once we focus our attention on things that can give us a dividend, we can agree together and put our money where our mouths are for the benefit of the generations after us. I am sure that we can unlock this puzzle.

Mr Speaker, I will demonstrate the Ugandan experience in one minute. I think that Uganda burnt its fingers because unbundling involves the separation of generation from transmission and distribution. ZESCO has one board at the moment. The Uganda Electricity Company, at that time, produced only 500 MW of power for the whole country. Obviously, its needs were not as much as ours on account of the fact that the country did not have mines that demand bulk power supply. So, the 500 MW seemed to have been enough. The plant was old.

Sir, Uganda went into a concession. Eskom, another struggling company from South Africa, managed to go into a concession with the Ugandan Government. It broke up the Uganda power utility company. Unfortunately, the result of this unbundling – this is where I want hon. Members to pay attention – was that one board of directors gave birth to about five other boards because the Uganda Electricity Generating Company, which is a government body, concessioned to a company that had to have its own board. So, we count two boards. The transmission company also had uniform style. It had to have a creation of the Uganda Electricity Transmission Company with its own board, the distribution company and then downstream to the supply outlets. This entailed that bureaucracy began to be heavy and only one among these companies got the benefit and that was the supply company called Umeme.

Mr Speaker, Umeme also entered into a concession with the Ugandan Government which concession the Ugandan Government lives to regret because its cancellation has ghastly results to contemplate. It was skewed in such a manner that to terminate it, the Ugandan Government would have to pay huge penalties. Now ask me who tailored these concessions? It was the interested parties that were agitating for the unbundling of the utility company. At the end of it all, they found themselves controlling these companies that were born and the Ugandan Government got stuck.

Mr Speaker, how did the Ugandan Government try to come out of it? It made a bold decision after its Parliament sat and to agreed to get a loan of more than US$3 million in order to develop a brand new power plant under a public-private partnership (PPP) arrangement. The Government’s role was to ensure that it built a dam like we built the Itezhi-tezhi dam. It also invited other people on board. This is what is called the Bujagali Power Station.

Mr Speaker, what did this do? It created a distortion on the tariffs because Eskom invested money and started producing and selling power. When the Bujagali came on stream, it had to use different variables of determining the returns on its investment in determining the tariffs of the same commodity. Therefore, going forward, what do you think we, as a nation, should do?

Mr Speaker, I think that we can dismember certain departments of ZESCO by saying that, maybe, we allow the distribution aspect to go because it could actually create some jobs as you see with Airtel, Mtn and the Zambia Telecommunications Company (Zamtel) where they have outlets that sell talk time cards. You could actually make kiosks for people to buy power, but leave the generation, which is where the second largest infrastructure of any power plant lies.

Mr Speaker, the transmission line in Zambia is very old. Unfortunately, the power purchase agreements that colleagues have referred to just have to come into play because, for instance, for the Copperbelt Energy Company (CEC) which has put huge investment at Kabompo Power Station or Lunsemfwa, which has invested in Kabwe to produce power, it does not have the transport to take this power to the end-user. So, it has to use the network for ZESCO.

Mr Speaker, it is also true that it enjoys slightly higher tariffs than the ordinary Zambian can afford in order to cushion its investment so that it can get a return within a stipulated time. So, where does my argument stand?

Sir, I am standing on the premise that the Government must keep ZESCO generation and transmission as one unit and maybe try, but with a lot of caution, to let go of the distribution and supply aspects because the consequences are not as ghastly to contemplate as we learnt in the Ugandan situation.

Sir, there are also many ideas that we can toy around with, but will still come back to the bulk power supply. What I am speaking about now is the Government’s promotion of mini-hydros and renewable energy such as solar and gas. We have been talking, on the Floor of this House, about the possibility of geo-thermal electricity at the Kapisha Hot Springs. This is an area that we can also explore, but ultimately, the catch twenty-two is that once produced, this power has to be transported. Unfortunately, power cannot be stored for tomorrow’s use. It must be used as it is generated and because of that, it will be much more costly if we decided to open up the market and allow everybody put up their own transmission lines. It will entail, logically, that the tariffs will be extremely high.

Mr Speaker, as it is today, Zambia has the lowest tariffs in the region. This is a fact. However, in a country were 70 per cent of the people are poor, that lowness of tariffs is meaningless. It is meaningless even if Zambia stands at the bottom of the tariffs in the region because Zambians cannot afford that tariff.

Sir, how can we get around it? When the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) was in power, it mooted the idea of the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) and did Zambia proud because it is one way that we have managed to take power to social growth points in the rural areas. I think that this programme must continue.

Sir, now, we know that the additional transmission lines that REA provides are extended to the grid and transferred to ZESCO at a symbolic or nominal price such as US$1 or zero kwacha. The difficulty of completely unbundling REA is that the Government will have to record huge losses because when you check the books of REA and see what it has spent in order to extend the grid, you will agree with me that colossal amounts of money have been spent to take electricity in the most remote areas of our country.

Mr Speaker, as I sit down, I think that the question that we must ask ourselves is: Is electricity an economic good entirely or is it also a social good? I will argue that it is both, and because it is a social good, it triggers development. Institutions such as REA must continue to flourish and continue to be supported.

Mr Speaker, the final issue that I am going to discuss, which came out prominent in the report, is one that Hon. Muchima touched on, and it is that of political interference in the operations of the utility company, ZESCO.  In certain cases, ZESCO has been used to the advantage of the political party in power and this is the reason many people will issue statements like, “Just privatise it, or unbundle it.” However, I think that in the long run, the generations that will come after us will blame us for not taking a bold decision to simply offload or privatise ZESCO. Those are my feelings.

Mr Speaker, we need to find a way to ring-fence ZESCO so that the hon. Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development cannot just come up against the statutes that we have and start firing chief executives like we saw in the past, because that is a clear function of the board. That Firing chief executives is an example of political interference in this parastatal that we are discussing today. If the leader of ZESCO can be given a free hand to use his/her acumen in order for the company to be innovative with the help of the Government, I am sure that we can find some answers to our problems.

Mr Speaker, today, the Ugandans are very impatient for that twenty-year concession to elapse so that they can cancel it because it has brought a lot of pain among their citizens.

Mr Speaker, let me thank the Chairperson of your Committee for ably moving the report and the seconder for bringing out other points that will help this House arrive at a decision on how we want to drive the process of increasing efficacy for our power utility company.

I thank you, Sir.

Prof. Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank your Committee for a very informative and well-presented report.

Mr Speaker, the reports of your Committee have extremely important policy implications which our colleagues on the Executive Bench must seriously pay attention to. This report, in terms of its policy import, is actually stating a question that says: Who is the enemy of the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO) in our country today? When you look at the problems in the operations of ZESCO, who is its enemy? That is the question that our colleagues on the Executive side of the House should ask and give answers to on behalf of the nation.

Mr Speaker, your report is very clear. On Page 13, it states that ZESCO’s corporate governance record is poor and beset with political interference. Political interference is the enemy number one of ZESCO. Again, your report goes on to say that ZESCO’s service delivery is characterised by poor quality service and unreliability of supply. Of course, the enemy there is internal. Your report further goes to say that the debt owed to ZESCO by the Government, the sole shareholder, is highly unacceptable and your Committee observed that the debt has a  negative impact on the financial stability of ZESCO and ultimately, the entire country. There goes the enemy of ZESCO, the Government.

Mr Speaker, in other countries within the region, the enemies of the power supply company are usually the ordinary people, or the poor households who engage in illegal connections by tapping into the national grid and not paying for the power. When we look around, there are countries which I will not name, and in these countries, the bills owed to the national power companies are usually very high because of illegal connections by the poor households. That is not the case in our country. Let us look at Page 7 of your report. On Page 7, your Committee has told us that ZESCO is owed K427 million, and if we carry out an analysis of that debt, the Government departments or quasi-Government departments owe ZESCO a staggering amount of K394 million, which is 92.2 per cent of the debt owed to ZESCO. The other organisations, which are largely private and very small, owe ZESCO 7.7 per cent of that amount. There is no reference here in these statistics to poor households. Our people in the compounds and in the poor neighbourhoods are very faithful to the power supply company. They pay their bills and they are eager to get quality service from ZESCO, but the enemy of ZESCO is the Government. That is the policy import of this report. Our colleagues in the Cabinet should be able to go back and say ask: What can we do? We are the enemy of ZESCO as the Government. What should we do to ensure that ZESCO operates at the level of efficiency and effectiveness to supply power to the rest of the country?

Mr Speaker, the statistics given by your report on Page 7 are very saddening because only 27 per cent of the population has access to power. In rural areas, only 5 per cent of the population has access to electricity. Most of us here represent the majority of the rural poor whose access to power is only 5 per cent. This should be food for thought for our colleagues in the Executive.

Mr Speaker, what can be done to ensure that what the Government owes ZESCO is promptly paid so that our people in rural areas can proportionally have their accessibility to power raised from 5 per cent to even 10 or 15 per cent so that they are not disadvantaged? What are the implications of this lopsided situation? The implications are that our economy, which is anchored on four fundamental sectors, mining, agriculture, tourism and energy, suffers when the energy aspect is not operating efficiently. The rural part of our economic system is not supplied with energy, and all the poor economic performance we are experiencing is a result of this.  

Sir, from this report, our colleagues have these challenging policy issues to address and I hope that they can address them expeditiously so that ZESCO is able to extend power, particularly to our rural sector, and also enable those who are getting power to get it uninterrupted. What we are experiencing now is not the way a public good should operate in serving the public. These are very important issues in terms of policy implications and I hope that the hon. Minister of Energy and Water Development in our country will take the observations and recommendations of your report very seriously and address the predicament of this public good.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, first and foremost I would like to state that I have a peculiar difficulty to debate this particular report. However, I will limit myself to three issues relating to the management of the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO), on Pages 2, 3 and 5.

Mr Speaker, I recall that the hon. Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development came to this House and made various statements pertaining to the issue or provision of electricity to our people. We were assured that after the rehabilitations of the various generation stations, load shedding would be a thing of the past. Further, there were statements that were being made by our colleagues on your right that load shedding was a Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) phenomenon and that once the Patriotic Front (PF) put in place all the measures, load shedding would cease.

Mr Speaker, I want to place it on record that load shedding in the country has become worse than it was under the MMD Government. Most of the townships in Lusaka, of late, are experiencing severe load shedding. I will give you an example of my area. Yesterday at 1500 hours, we were told that load shedding would begin and it happened. Power was only restore at around 2200 hours, but before I even woke this morning, it had gone.  


Mr Mwiimbu: I had no breakfast and I had no lunch because there was no power.

Government Members: Aah!

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, I am privileged, as I am not like my other unfortunate Zambians who cannot afford to go to a restaurant and buy food. In most of these townships, members of the public are now utilising charcoal, which has become expensive. The supply of charcoal is, as you are aware, a cost to this nation. This Government is on record discouraging charcoal burning, arresting charcoal burners and those who supply the commodity. In the existing circumstance, where does the Government expect Zambians to find energy?

Ms Lubezhi: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: Where do they find energy because electricity is not being provided and charcoal is unavailable? How do they cook? There is no firewood which they can use as alternative source of energy. There is no treated coal which can be used for domestic purposes despite the abundance of charcoal in this country. Where do we expect our people to get energy?

Mr Speaker, as if that is not enough, we have been encouraging our Zambian entrepreneurs to invest in different sectors. Our hardworking Zambians are endeavouring to invest, but as they are investing, they are incurring huge losses because there is no energy. There is no power in most of these areas, during the day. What sort of energy do you expect our entrepreneurs, whom we are encouraging to invest, to use? Where can they get the energy from because it is not there?

Mr Speaker, we are not being industrious as a Government. We have vast reserves of coal so we should invest in alternative sources of energy in this country. We are lucky that we are in a sunny climate and we can use solar power. In other countries like Botswana, solar power is used abundantly. We are not utilising solar systems in this country.

Mr Speaker, as I indicated, we have abandoned coal. We are relying on hydropower which is unreliable. This is taking into account that we have to pray to God to provide rain otherwise there will be disaster.

Sir, this is June, the middle of the year, and we already have severe load shedding. I shudder at the thought of what will happen around September to October. A number of our industries and businesses will close because of our failure to provide power in this country. We are being irresponsible.

Mr Speaker, I am aware that Zambia has become a donor. It is not an issue of money. We borrowed money to rehabilitate Kariba Dam on behalf of Zimbabwe. It is on record that Zimbabwe said that they had no money.

Mr Chikwanda indicated dissent.

Mr Mwiimbu: We have gone ahead and borrowed money on behalf of our poor sister country because we believe we are a better country with more resources. However, in the meantime, we have serious financial constraints in Zambia.

Ms Lubezhi: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: We are being irresponsible. I know that we need to rehabilitate the dam …

Mr Chikwanda: On a point of order, Sir.


Mr Mwiimbu: There are no points of order.

Mr Speaker: Hon. Member for Monze Central, I am sure you know that you cannot make that ruling.


Mr Speaker: Rather than have points of order in a debate of this sort, please, respond at an appropriate juncture.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, unless the media, including Government media, misled us, statements were made to the effect that the Government of the Republic of Zambia borrowed money to rehabilitate the Kariba Dam and that our neighbours had no money. If that is not correct, then, it is the media that misled us.

Sir, the other issue which I would like to address is that of poor corporate governance at the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation Limited (ZESCO). I do not mean to bring his name into my debate, but I am privileged that the Chairperson of Committees and I were lawyers for the petitioners in the 2001 Presidential Elections. ZESCO was very prominent in the abuse of resources which were used to finance the ruling party at the time. Unfortunately, this trend has continued.

Mr Mucheleka: It is worse.

Mr Mwiimbu: We have had so many by-elections in this country and in a number of election petitions, ZESCO is being cited as a parastatal that is being used by those in power to influence the vote and provide resources.

Mr Mucheleka: Correct!

Mr Mwiimbu: It is on record for those that are willing to read the petitions.

Mr Antonio interjected.

Mr Mwiimbu: Sir, it is unfortunate that this trend has continued and it is damaging the reputation of ZESCO. It is also injurious to ZESCO’s financial standing.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: I would like to appeal to the hon. Minister responsible to ensure that this trend is stopped. We are also aware that, due to poor corporate governance at ZESCO, cadres are being given contracts …

Mr Mucheleka interjected.

Mr Speaker: Order!

Hon. Member for Lubansenshi, please, can you desist that conduct.

Continue, hon. Member for Monze Central.

Mr Mwiimbu: Sir, I was saying that we have witnessed situations where political cadres are being awarded contracts to provide services to ZESCO. However, these political cadres have no capacity to provide the requisite services that ZESCO desires. As a result, ZESCO is failing to provide the requisite services to the people of Zambia. This trend should end forthwith. It is costing this nation so much money. Some of the failures of ZESCO are now affecting the people of Zambia.

Ms Lubezhi: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, my colleague, Hon. Muchima, talked about poor governance in relation to management at ZESCO. In the last ten years, we have had more than six Managing Directors at ZESCO and in most instances, their services are terminated at the whim of those who are in power. It seems that only those who are considered to be loyal and on the side of the ruling party or the hon. Minister in charge are the ones who survive.

Sir, we recently witnessed a situation where workers at ZESCO almost went on strike demanding the reinstatement of one of the Managing Directors who was fired from ZESCO. However, it is not only the Managing Director who suffers this fate at ZESCO. We have seen situations where middle management at ZESCO suffers the same fate. Once a Managing Director has been sacked, the one who succeeds him/her also fires the other managers who were appointed by him/her.

Mr Speaker, as a result, ZESCO has become a training ground for other electricity utility companies in the region because they know that these ZESCO managers are highly qualified. There is no security of tenure at ZESCO. When mangers hear that there is a change of Government, they know that they are also going, as if they are political appointees. It is unfortunate.

Sir, ZESCO must be run as a company. A minister of energy has no power, under the articles of ZESCO, to appoint a Managing Director. The responsibility of appointing a manager or other managers at ZESCO lies with the board. However, what has been transpiring is that the hon. Minister appoints and the board ratifies. This is very unfortunate.

Mr Speaker, as a result of these management positions being insecure, there is always a crisis of expectation whenever Government changes. As a result of what is happening at ZESCO, its efficiency is being affected. This load shedding that we are experiencing is not merely as a result of poor rainfall this year, but also a result of poor management and insecurity obtaining at ZESCO.

Sir, ZESCO is a critical institution to this country. It is a driver of industry in this country. There is no industry that does not rely on it. If we mismanage ZESCO, we are mismanaging the economy. We cannot afford to continue the way we have been managing the affairs of ZESCO.
Mr Speaker, we got a report that the power plant in Maamba has been completed. If that is true, why can it not be commissioned so that the power generation deficit is reduced? We are told that that particular power plant will contribute 300 Mhz of power. Why can it not be commissioned so that the load shedding can be reduced?

Mr Chikwanda: It is not completed!

Mr Mwiimbu:  Sir, the hon. Finance Minister is saying that it has not been completed.

Mr Speaker: No! Hon. Member for Monze Central, you are addressing me and not the hon. Minister of Finance.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, I thank you for your guidance.

Sir, the hon. Minister of Finance is saying that that plant has not been completed. There are reports that have been made in State owned media that a plant has been completed. I read that report and if it is not true, the media houses must be censored and a statement must be made by the hon. Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development that the plant has not been completed. If it has not been completed, I would like the Government to urge the contractor to speed up that process of completion. That particular plant will reduce the deficit taking into account the low levels of water which we are borrowing from Hon. Muchima’s village.

Mr Speaker, finally, I would like to urge our colleagues, those who are responsible in the Government, to not discriminate against areas they deem do not support them in the provision of electricity. We have noticed, with concern, that particular areas are being favoured. Electricity grids are being established in some areas whereas in other areas, there is almost nothing that is happening. I have in mind an area in the Gwembe Valley. The people of the Gwembe Valley suffered as a result of the construction of the Kariba Dam.

Mr Ntundu: Yes. They are still suffering.

Mr Mwiimbu: Sir, a number of our people died.

Mr Ntundu: Up to now.

Mr Mwiimbu: Their graves are in that Kariba Dam, and yet to date, there is no electricity that is being provided in those areas.

Mr Ntundu: My house has no electricity!

Mr Speaker: Hon. Member for Gwembe, why are you not allowing the hon. Member for Monze Central to debate? You are interfering with him.

Mr Ntundu: No, I was just saying that my house has no power.


Mr Speaker: No, whether your house has power or not is not the issue.

The hon. Member for Monze Central, proceed.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, I would like to sympathise with my colleague, the hon. Member for Gwembe, for the sufferings he has gone through as a result of ZESCO failing to provide power.

Sir, as a result of the construction of the Kariba Dam, a fund called the Gwembe/Tonga Special Fund was created. To date, this particular fund is dormant and there is no money that is being provided. We are also aware that the World Bank had also attempted to provide a fund for the people of the Gwembe Valley. Therefore, I would like to urge the hon. Minister and the Government to ensure that a special fund is created for those people who were displaced and made to leave their rich fertile agriculture land for the creation of the Kariba Dam.

With those few remarks, I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

The Minister of Labour and Social Security (Mr Shamenda): Mr Speaker, I would like to commend your Committee on its work and for producing a very informative report. The Government acknowledges the issues covered in the report of your Committee which are relevant and timely.

Sir, allow me to focus my debate on the matters highlighted in the report that relate to employment and labour while my colleague, the hon. Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry, will deal with other issues which have been raised.

Mr Speaker, it is gratifying to note that the Committee devoted time to interrogate issues relating to the operations of the National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA) and the legislation establishing the scheme. The pension reforms and issues are highlighted by the Government in the Action-Taken Report on the Report of the Committee for the Third Session of the Eleventh National Assembly.

Sir, I would like to take note of your Committee’s observations and recommendations on the key issues surrounding the operations of NAPSA, such as the high penalty rate prescribed in the National Pension Scheme Authority Act and the need to adopt the recommendations from the Actuarial Valuation Report.

Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that the Government is in agreement with the concerns of the Committee regarding the current penalty rate under NAPSA. It is the intention of the Government to align the penalty rate to the Bank of Zambia Policy Rate. This proposal is part of the amendments contained in the Draft Bill that the Ministry of Justice is working on.

Mr Speaker, the background to this level of penalty is that when NAPSA was established in 2000, the interest rates were very high and unpredictable, owing to the high inflation rates. However, the economic environment has changed such that interest rates are now at a different level and are more stable. That is why it is the Government’s intention to align the penalty rate to the Bank of Zambia Policy Rate. Unfortunately, this could not have been done administratively through issuance of a Statutory Instrument (SI) because it requires this House to amend the principal Act.

Mr Speaker, regarding the recommendations of the 2012 NAPSA Actuarial Valuation Report, I am pleased to report that the recommendations were adopted and some of them are already being implemented while others, such as adjustments to the benefit structure, require amendments of the Act before they can be implemented. Such recommendations are part of the amendments that are contained in the Draft Bill.

Mr Speaker, the other important issue noted by your Committee is that of the on-going pension reforms. I wish to agree with the Committee that the reforms are critical in addressing the challenges that the pension sector is facing. I wish to inform the House that the Technical Committee Report was finalised and a comprehensive is being drafted.

Mr Speaker, the Government also wishes to acknowledge the findings of the Committee, arising from the study tour to Uganda, in particular, the need to undertake comprehensive comparative study of the pension reforms of other countries. This is to ensure that our reform process results in a robust pensions system that will capture workers, both in the formal and informal sectors, and provide reasonable benefits to people after retirement.

Mr Speaker, in terms of monitoring job creation in Zambia, as it relates to the standardisation of employment data formats, I wish to inform the House that the data collection instrument used for the 2014 Labour Force Survey was revised in line with the recommendations of your Committee.

Sir, the House may recall that previously, the Committee had urged the Government to commence the process of revising the Employment Act Cap. 269 of the Laws of Zambia. I am glad to inform the House that the labour law reform process has reached an advanced stage and incorporates amendments to the Employment Act.

Mr Speaker, it is the Government’s intention to introduce an Amendment Bill in Parliament which is a fast track amendment to the Employment Act. This amendment will seek to curb casualisation of jobs as well as protect workers against unjustified dismissals while awaiting the comprehensive review of all the pieces of legislation pertaining to labour.

Sir, I wish to take this opportunity to inform the House that my ministry has partnered with Airtel Zambia to establish a call center. Airtel will begin delivery and installation of equipment within the course of next week and the call center shall be launched by the end of July, 2015. The call center will ease communication and provide a platform for lodging labour complaints from all parts of Zambia without the complainant physically going to our labour offices.

Mr Speaker, I would also like to comment on the issues which were raised by Hon. Mutelo, the Member of Parliament for from Lukulu West, on the payments of the benefits. I would like to assure him that this is being addressed in the reforms which are going on at the moment. Pertaining to the retirement age and ratio of payments, I would like to assure my son …


Mr Shamenda: … that we are thinking outside the box.

Mr Speaker: Oh no! Not your son, but the hon. Member for Lukulu West. That is the proper address.

You may continue, hon. Minister.

Mr Shamenda: I would like to assure the hon. Member of Lukulu West that we are thinking outside the box and not inside the box.

Finally Mr Speaker, the Government has taken into account the observations and recommendations by your Committee and will endeavour to implement these recommendations so as to ensure a productive labour anchored on employment, equity and social justice.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, before I comment on the report by the Committee of Economic Affairs, Energy and Labour, I would like to air the correct situation on Maamba Collieries and the Zambezi River Authority loan that was uttered by the hon. Member for Monze Central.

Sir, the Zambezi River Authority was lent money by the Ministry of Finance, a sum of US$114 million, which it got from a financial institution at a very competitive rate of less than 1 per cent. That money was then on lent to Zambezi River Authority foreign interest. This money was borrowed from the World Bank. So, I would like to ensure that this is put on record.

Mr Speaker, I also want to comment on the second issue which, again, was raised by the hon. Member of Parliament from Monze Central regarding Maamba Collieries. In fact, 35 per cent of Maamba Collieries is owned by the Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines-Investment Holdings (ZCCM–IH). Maamba Collieries is in touch with us, through the Ministry of Finance, and we are processing a non-collaborative guarantee to facilitate a loan to pursue financial closure. It will only be ready and complete by the end of the year.

Sir, I want to thank your Committee for the detailed report that is before this House. I wish to recognise the work of your Committee in coming up with this report. The report contained observations and recommendations that will be closely reviewed by the Government and appropriate responses and actions will be taken. I wish to make some observations that are critical in our debating the recommendations of your Committee.

Mr Speaker, the Government is aware of the challenges in the electricity sub-sector and it is constantly working at finding solutions to the challenges. In finding solutions to these problems, the Government has been taking into account economic growth projections as well as the required investments in new generation capacity, …


Mr Speaker: Order, both the left and right!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: … expansion of the transmission and distribution networks, and the rehabilitation and maintenance of the existing plants.

Sir, on the matter of the unbundling of the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO), the Government remains cognisant of the potential benefits as well as challenges that would emanate from such an intervention. There are significant social and economic dimensions that must be taken on board and as a result, we have been cautious on this matter.

Mr Speaker, one of the main challenges that the Government has had to contend with has been ZESCO’s weak balance sheet. We are addressing this challenge by cutting costs and wastage in ZESCO as well as moving towards cost-reflective tariffs so that the company is commercially viable.

Sir, our priority, therefore, is to fully implement the commercialisation programme for ZESCO Limited so that it becomes a viable enterprise. The commercialisation programme was agreed on with key stakeholders and co-operating partners. The programme is under implementation. The programme of commercialisation entails that both the Government and ZESCO continuously access various options to make the programme achieve the intended results.

Mr Speaker, another dimension to the debate on unbundling is the issue of access to electricity in this country. One of the Government’s goals is to achieve universal access to electricity by 2030. Currently, in addition to ZESCO’s mandate of providing electricity, it is also serving as the Government’s implementing agency for the national electricity plan. We need to be sure that the unbundling of ZESCO does not create a vacuum in our development efforts, in terms of our universal access agenda. It is necessary to take into account the fact that unbundling and privatising ZESCO would mean recognising that the private sector operator’s objectives could be fundamentally different from those of the Government. One danger of unbundling in a small market is that the Government would not be able to compel independent power providers to extend their business operations to areas that are not attractive such as the rural areas. Such an environment would attract conversations on incentives and subsides to private operators which, in turn, could prove costly for the Government.
Therefore, Mr Speaker, in considering the issue of unbundling of ZESCO, the Government is taking into account the maturity of our electricity market to handle the pressure that comes with unbundling of a national utility company and introducing full competition at generation, transmission and distribution levels of the electricity chain.

Mr Speaker, in conclusion, let me simply state that I have taken note of the valuable comments and recommendations made by your Committee in the report. I would like to assure this House and your Committee that before any restructuring is undertaken, we will weigh the costs and benefits of improving the operations of the existing commercial entity using a holistic approach.

Mr Speaker, our goal is universal access and we will remain focused on making sure that our people in all ten provinces of this country have access to electricity.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Hamudulu: Mr Speaker, on behalf of your Committee and, indeed, on my own behalf, I would like to thank all hon. Members who took the Floor to debate the Motion that I moved for the overwhelming support that the Motion received. Special thanks go to Hon. Mutelo, Hon. Muchima, Hon. Nkombo, Hon. Prof. Lungwangwa, Hon. Mwiimbu, Hon. Shamenda, Minister of Labour and Social Security, and Hon. Mwanakatwe, Acting Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development.

 I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Question put and agreed to.






Clauses 1 and 2 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

First, Second and Third Schedules ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Title agreed to.


Clauses, 1 and 2 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Schedule ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Title agreed to.



[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

The following Bills were reported to the House as having passed through Committee without amendments:

The Supplementary Appropriation (2013) Bill, 2015

The Excess Expenditure Appropriation (2012) Bill, 2015

Third Readings on Friday, 26th June, 2015.




(Debate resumed)

The Deputy Minister of Finance (Mr Mvunga): Mr Speaker, when the House adjourned yesterday, I was trying to make a point and emphasise why we are supporting the Motion to increase the sealing of borrowing from K35 billion to K60 billion.

Sir, it is undeniable that infrastructure development is a binding inhibitor to economic development. As such, if we accept that status quo, the next thing we need to do is ask ourselves how are we to develop this country because we need to have the infrastructure.

Mr Speaker, there are several ways in which we can develop the economy. One of them is by collecting direct revenues, taxes and non-tax revenue.

Mr Speaker, unfortunately, in terms of our expenditure structure, our total domestic revenue is such that 70 per cent is spent on recurrent expenditure and roughly about 30 per cent is available for capital expenditure. This is far less adequate to be invested adequately in the infrastructure of the country and consequently boost the economic performance. Under those circumstances, other alternative sources of funding need to be explored to ensure that we fund the infrastructure projects of the country and, consequently, improve the prospects of growth in our economy.

Sir, the other angle that has been talked about by speakers before me is the private sector’s involvement in economic development. Unfortunately, the private sector will only involve itself in economic development under the pre-condition that infrastructure will be available for it to do business. Otherwise, it will not come on board to help. So, it is the responsibility of the Government to ensure that we have the pre-condition and pre-requisite infrastructure to facilitate private sector participation in the economy.

Mr Speaker, similarly, we should not lose sight of the fact that development can also come through Foreign Direct Investment (FDI). In that regard, it is important to emphasise that Zambia is not the only FDI destination in Africa. As such, when the investors are looking at investing in a destination of preferred choice, they definitely look at the state of that country’s infrastructure before they move in. It is, therefore, important that we carry out a comparative analysis within the regional economic community of the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) and the African Continent as a whole, and ensure that we are a best suitor for the FDI to come into the country.

Mr Speaker, in debating the Motion on whether we should increase the amount on external loans or not, I support the Motion because it gives us the impetus that will allow us to adequately prepare from an infrastructure perspective. This will, in turn, assist our economic development.

Sir, it is also worth mentioning that infrastructure development is not a silver bullet or  a one-off event which you forget about. We need to carry on re-investing in existing infrastructure and exploring new projects that will bring us additional revenues or potential for additional revenues for the Government arising from new business entries into our economy.

Mr Speaker, in conclusion, I wish to urge this House to seriously look at what is being proposed. Look at the objectivity of the Government and the indicators that I mentioned yesterday in terms of the international benchmarks, …

Mr Livune: Question!

Mr Mvunga: … and support the Motion.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Minister of Gender and Child Development (Prof. Luo): Mr Speaker, from the outset, I want to say that I support the Motion that is on the Floor, and I do so for the following reasons; I have been doing some reading on why certain countries are moving forward economically and others are not. What has been written about Africa is that most African countries are not developing because of lack of investment in infrastructure development. So, what are we talking about and why is it that during yesterday’s debate, hon. Members bemoaned the fact that we had a lot of difficulties to pay back loans that had been accrued to Zambia. We need to intra-inspect. We cannot just look at what happened yesterday and apply it today. Maybe, if you look at what the money was used for, at the time, you will find that it was for consumption. What we are saying now is that we need to put money into developing the country’s infrastructure.

Sir, I just want to cite one example of what the lack of investment in infrastructure does. I am going to use the example of airports. Many years ago, South Africa had a very small airport and planes hardly landed there. In fact, Zambia looked better than South Africa. However, South Africa decided to invest in expanding its airports and developed them to the level they are. Zambia was holding back because it wanted to look good and keep money in its reserves. Today, South Africa is earning money from its airports and Zambia is earning nothing. In fact, we are not even a preferred destination at the moment. When you look at the number of planes that land at our airports, it is sad.

Mr Speaker, I know of another state, Atlanta, where the Governor decided that he would build that country’s economy on transport. So, he developed the railway transport as well as the air transport, and the economy of Atlanta is fixed on just transport. So, as the Patriotic Front (PF), we are trying to move away from saying our economy is good when it does not translate into improved livelihoods.

Mr Speaker, I used to ask Zambian economists a lot of questions whenever the hon. Minister of Finance said that our country’s economy was doing well. However, those of us who were working in the countryside hospitals saw the poverty levels among our people. So, I used to have difficulties relating the statements of a good economy of Zambia, which was even referred to yesterday, that we inherited a good economy in this country, with the lives of our people who have been sinking in poverty because of the failure to invest correctly. The downside to not wanting to invest correctly is that we now have a disease burden because of not investing in our infrastructure, sanitation and water. So, our people are dying from water borne diseases such as cholera and typhoid. Our people are dying from diseases that could have been prevented had the Government done the right thing.

Sir, we, the managers of Zambia’s economy, at the moment, need to take the risks that other countries have taken. That is exactly what the PF is doing. We are saying that there is a need to take risks and invest. I would have expected yesterday’s debate to talk to us about making sure that we put in place systems of prudent spending, monitoring and evaluating and systems of evaluating the impact that the money we have borrowed will have on our people in Zambia. Those of us who represent the rural poor – unfortunately or fortunately for me, I have never had to run a luxury ministry. The ministries that I run always take me to the rural parts of Zambia. I cry when I see how our people are suffering.

Hon. Opposition Members: Question!

Prof. Luo: Mr Speaker, …

Mr Mucheleka: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: Hon. Member, take your seat. There are no points of order in this segment. The decision I made yesterday still stands. There will be no points of order until we complete debating this Motion.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Hon. Minister, you may continue.

Prof. Luo: Mr Speaker, for those of us who have been experiencing and seeing the suffering of our people should be asking whether we are doing the right thing, and the answer is yes. I say so because when you speak to the people now, since the PF came into Government, they are happy, …

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1815 hours until 1830 hours.
[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

Prof. Luo: Mr Speaker, sometimes when I seat in this House, I really get confused on what we want. This afternoon, there was a lot of debate around the fact that we want Zambia to be electrified, and yet yesterday people said they did not want us to have money to be able to continue with our projects. I think what was interesting is that I know the people of Monze were listening to the fact that Hon. Mwiimbu does not want the Niko road  …

Mr Mwiimbu: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: Order!

Hon. Member for Monze Central, please, take a seat. Hon. Minister of Gender and Child Development, we would like to make progress on this Motion. I have made a decision that there will be no points of order. It puts your colleagues in a very awkward position when I restrain this facility and then people are debated on the other hand. If we proceed debating objectively and impersonally, we will be very efficient in the manner we transact. We need to conclude this Motion this afternoon. So, let us be impersonal, objective and if you are able to, professional.

Prof. Luo: Mr Speaker, arigatou gozaimasu.


Prof. Luo: Mr Speaker, that means thank you very much.

Sir, without beating about the bush, I was saying we heard development being denied through yesterday’s debate. However, we want to assure our colleagues on your left that we, in the PF, would like to ensure that the people see the Bottom and Niko roads completed.

Mr Livune: Question!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Prof. Luo: We will ensure that Mwinilunga is electrified because we promised the people of Zambia to turn around the economy of this country. We will do this not by just saying we now have single digit inflation, but in terms of the people feeling the benefits of the infrastructure and facilities that we are giving them.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Prof. Luo: Mr Speaker, some people have said that we have built too many universities and schools in this country. How will this country move forward without educated people? I know that for a long time, we have not appreciated educated people, but I think it is important and imperative that this country builds a human capital with the relevant education to give proper advice. Sometimes I think that is why we find things going lopsided because we do not have the human capital that can advise. Therefore, for us in the PF, the development of universities and building of schools is paramount. We have come here to raise the debt ceiling so that we can have enough money to build more schools, especially for young girls. At the moment we are grappling with issues of teenage pregnancies and child marriages. It is because we do not have what it takes to support our young girls to get into school so that they also become doctors of tomorrow. We are denying them from exploring their full potential.

Mr Speaker, I want to say to my colleagues in this House, this afternoon, that I am one of those who will support this Motion. In fact, I would have wished that we are not even talking about raising the ceiling to K60 billion, but something like K100 billion.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Prof. Luo: We need to raise the standards of living for the people of Zambia. Fifty years after independence we cannot have people even trading on the streets with no toilets and living in pole and mud houses. I think that is unacceptable. All of us seated in this room have an obligation to ensure that we do that which the people out there, who voted for us, asked us to come and do; to change the face of this country.

Mr Speaker, this country is lucky in that it is located centrally and borders eight countries. If we developed the education sector by putting up appropriate infrastructure, we can draw revenue into our economy on education from in and out of Zambia. If we developed our transport sector by having the right infrastructure of rail, road and air transport, we can, again, draw resources into our economy from outside and within. Why should we go to South Africa for treatment? It is because we are looking at South Africa’s infrastructure and not developing our own. It means we will continue building the economies of other countries, instead of building our own economy.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Prof. Luo: Mr Speaker, we can, again, put up appropriate health infrastructure and even have what is called health tourism, like our colleagues in India. If you are going for treatment in India, you have to get a tourism visa. We can do that because God blessed us. This is one country that has abundant resources. We have simply misused our resources by not doing the right thing.

Mr Speaker, I want to state, this afternoon, that if it comes to division and voting, I will be one of those who will support this particular Motion because I would like to see a Zambia that is full of opportunities, where women and men enjoy equal opportunities and our children look forward to not only being employed as white collar employees, but can also employ themselves because we have put the appropriate infrastructure in place.

Sir, we are talking about attracting investment to this country. The first thing you are supposed to do for any place when you plan a project is to put up infrastructure. If you do not have infrastructure, nobody will be attracted to that particular business. So, how are we going to do it if we do not have the money? I think, as Zambians and especially as leaders, we need to think twice and rise to the occasion and take the necessary risks. What our colleagues on your left need to do is to monitor how these monies are being expended and evaluate the impact of various public programmes. Another five years from now, because we are coming back to power next year, …

Mr Livune: Question!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Prof. Luo: … we will be celebrating a Government that changed things, unlike one under which the hon. Minister of Finance was only talking about single digit inflation. The people will be celebrating because they will also be living in facilities that are acceptable.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Prof. Luo: We heard of somebody saying that they are privileged because they are able to eat in a restaurant. We should not be saying that in this House.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Can we avoid running commentaries.

I have been communicating to some of you none verbally.


Mr Speaker: You know that when I make a decision to ask you to leave, please, do not complain. I have been communicating because I am avoiding interrupting debate.

You know who I am addressing.

Mr Mwaliteta: Livune.

The Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mrs Mwanakatwe): Mr Speaker, I want to thank you for giving me this opportunity to debate this afternoon.

Mr Speaker, I want to start by saying that this Government is a responsible one.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: This Government makes decisions collectively. When this Government met around Cabinet to discuss raising the debt ceiling to K60 billion, it was collective.

Mr Sikazwe: Yes!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: It was not the ownership of the hon. Minister of Finance only. It is a collective seeking of the ceiling to go to K60 billion.

Mr Speaker, we seek to borrow and that is why we are here. We seek to borrow because we are embarking on long-term projects which are long term investments. You cannot embark on long-term project with short term money. When my Pay-as-You Earn (PAYE) is taken, it is taken in that month and in the next month. When Corporate Tax is taken, it is taken in that month. That is short-term. What we are saying here is that we are embarking on long-term infrastructural development that has to be married with long-term borrowing. This is infrastructure which will allow the private sector to flourish and participate.

Mr Speaker, our own people who have got very little participation in the private sector right now, we want to take infrastructure to them so that they can be able to participate. We want to see empowerment. This participation by the private sector will trigger growth. Growth will trigger additional revenue and additional revenue is wealth creation, job creation and really bringing about the industrialisation that we as a Government are seeking.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: The country now is seeing investment in infrastructure real time.

Mr Speaker, we have a modestly growing tax base. If we do what we are promising as PF, we are going to see growth that is meaningful. Investment follows where infrastructure is whether local or foreign. They want to see a road, railway line, water and sanitation, and housing. Those are the things that we are doing.

Mr Speaker, our people are also waiting for us to uplift their lives. They have aspirations. I have daily, weekly and monthly aspirations as everybody else here has. Our people all over the country are waiting for us to assist them to achieve their aspirations. This is really up to this House to ensure that those aspirations are met.

Mr Speaker, Zambians fear borrowing. I do not know why. I really wonder why Zambians fear borrowing. When I was in this country, the bulk of my balance sheet were non Zambians. When I moved to Ghana, 90 per cent of the balance sheet was Ghanaian. I moved to Nigeria, 90 per cent was Nigerian. So, I wonder what it is that we are afraid of. Why I am saying that is that we need to ensure that our people know that you borrow to actually make yourself better as long as you have got a bankable project.


Mrs Mwanakatwe: We have a bankable project, as the Patriotic Front (PF).

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, as long as you have done your feasibility study ...

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: … and you know that you are going to make money by borrowing, then, borrow. We have done our feasibility study.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, when you borrow, you must have capacity to pay back. The hon. Minister of Finance told us, yesterday, that he has the capacity to pay back.

Hon. Opposition Members: Question!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: He told this House that this USD 8 billion will translate to just about between 6 and 7 per cent of the gross domestic product (GDP). That is capacity to borrow. We are saying raise the ceiling to K60 billion.

Mr Speaker, actually what the people on your left should be asking us on this side of the House is whether what we are borrowing is enough.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mrs Mwanakatwe: They should be asking whether we will manage to do everything we intend to with this money. We should be saying we would like 100 per cent like my sister had said.

Mr Speaker, the K28 billion GDP that we currently have might sound great but really, this Government wants to see that figure doubling ...

Prof. Luo: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: … because it has a bankable project and we are going to invest this money. We are going to see the GDP going up in this country. When the GDP was K6 billion, the borrowing was at K7.5 billion. That is more than the GDP. Here we are saying that just let us have K8 billion of the K28 billion GDP.

Mr Speaker, for me, this should be an open door that we are pushing. As a Government, we are not satisfied with K28 billion. We want to see that figure doubling and that is why we intend to invest up to K60 billion.

Mr Speaker, when a company wants to grow and wants to expand, if it wants to buy machinery, what it does is to borrow. When it wants to grow and expand, it wants to grow responsibly. Therefore, it goes to borrow. Banks love to see companies borrow and pay back. They love to see companies grow and pay back. What that does is pave way for job creation, wealth creation and industrialisation.

Mr Speaker, I did say that the hon. Members want clinics in their areas like us. They want schools like us. They want hospitals and roads just like us. This is laudable because we are on the same page. We want the same for our people. Let us all support this Motion in order to ensure that the people’s aspirations, that are growing day by day, are really fulfilled. The capacity in Zambia or potential has been spoken about by many of us. This is going to help us to unleash that potential. We cannot continue to talk about potential. We cannot eat potential. That potential must be realised …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: … so that the whole country benefits.

Mr Speaker, perhaps, I need to remind the House where the money for the debt that stands at K35 billion, at the moment, has gone. Of this debt, between 30 and 40 per cent has gone to the development of roads. That is the Kitwe/Chingola Dual Carriage Way, Mongu/Kalabo …


Mrs Mwanakatwe: … and now we are getting nearer to Angola. Mr Speaker, the people are so elated about the construction of the Mufuchani Bridge in Kitwe because they can now talk to each other.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Other bridges that have been constructed are the Levy Mwanawasa Bridge, Luwingu/Mansa and now we are linking the Northern Province and Luapula, there is also the  …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Chama/Chinsali Bridge plus another bridge in Luangwa. Mr Speaker, I can go on.

Mr Sikazwe: Bottom Road.

Mrs Mwanakatwe: We are linking this country. What was once called a landlocked country is now being referred to as a land-linked country under the PF.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, as we make this investment, we are also thinking of making money on the other side. Most of the roads that we are putting up will be toll roads. In two to three years time, we are going to earn, at least, US$200 million per year.


Mr Speaker: Order, on the left and on the right!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: We need to invest now for the future of our children. This is a good cost. In banking there is good cost and bad cost. I am talking about good cost.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: This debt we have today of K35 billion is helping us do routine maintenance on our existing roads such as the Lusaka/Kafue/Chirundu, Chipata/Mfuwe, Chipata/Chadiza and Lundazi/ Chama. This is marvelous by any stretch of imagination.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, the Mongu/Kalabo Road was very expensive because we suspended it. When you suspend a road, it becomes costly but we did it because we knew that that was the only answer.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: We have the Senanga/ Sesheke Road plus a bridge. Mr Speaker, we are linking Zambia internally and externally …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!
Mrs Mwanakatwe: …  so that infrastructure can reach every corner of Zambia.


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, there was mention by Hon. Dr Musokotwane yesterday that we are building a new hotel at the airport very expensively. Why are we building a hotel? Why are we putting up a new airport at a cost of K270 million? The new airport will widen and lengthen the runways. Every single size aircraft will land at the Lusaka International Airport. We want Lusaka to be a hub. These are the things that will make Lusaka International Airport a hub.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, why a hotel, we were being asked. I was shocked. I do not know of any airport of repute without airport facilities. This airport is going see four million passengers. This is marvelous.


Mr Speaker: Order!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: The question that we should be asked is why we are building only one Hotel. When I go to the Oliver Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg or the Nairobi Airport, there is more than one Hotel.  Mr Speaker, we mean good business.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, we borrowed money and expanded the Livingstone Airport and this project will pay for itself. We want to make sure that Lusaka is a hub.

Mr Speaker, there was a question or a comment that there are too many districts. We have spent resources on police posts, post offices, housing, civic centers, schools and even universities. This is all in an effort to bring facilities to these new districts. We want to improve the lives of our people. We are a well-meaning Government.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member of Parliament for Luena lamented the death of a pregnant woman who died on her way to give birth. It was brought to the attention of my colleague, the hon. Minister of Health, that the woman died because the walk from where she lived to the hospital was too long. The hon. Member also mentioned something about her husband. We are trying to alleviate the situation of people dying whilst pregnant and going to a clinic that is so far away.

Mr Speaker, Mpika, for example, is 42,000 square kilometers. It is bigger than Rwanda and Switzerland. Can you have one Boma in Mpika? You cannot. You cannot!


Hon. Government Member: Tell them!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: There was an assertion yesterday that we are constructing roads very expensively. I disagree totally. There are four elements to building a road. The first one is cement. Cement is US$20 per 50kg bag in Zambia, US$6 per 50kg bag in the region and US$3 per 50 kg bag in China. Are you getting my gist, Mr Speaker?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: What we are doing here is an expensive business and this is why you have seen the PF Government attracting investment into the cement sector. Dangote is now bringing the cost of cement down.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: We are going to bring more of these and you will see the cost of cement coming further down.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, the cost of diesel is the highest in the region. Bitumen comes from very far and is very costly.


Mr Speaker: Order!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, these roads are green field roads. We are bringing down trees and cutting into hills. It is an expensive business. The earth moving equipment is coming from China, through other bordering countries, to Lusaka. This is very expensive.

Mr Lubinda: Sichinga!


Mrs Mwanakatwe: We are going towards a reduction in cost, going forward.


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, now, when we build roads, we will not have to look for a design because the Road Development Agency (RDA) will have the design. You just come and build to cheapen it. With more players in the market, especially with local capacity being built, there will be more competition.

So, you will be seeing the advertisement that are ongoing for the roads that are going to be built such as the Chingola/Solwezi, Kapiri/Nakonde, Lusaka/Ndola, Ndola/Kasumbalesa, Lusaka/Chirundu and Kafue/Livingstone. Let me address the issue of the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) that was referred to. These roads will be on PPP basis where the Government’s share will be the road itself. So, there will be no money coming from the Government. The roads constructed under the PPP will have toll gates.

Mr Speaker, we are continuing to grow and taking to roads to where we think there is potential. If you look at Sweden, it only utilises 2 per cent of its forestry. This brings it US$64 billion per annum. We have forestry. We need to get a road to the forestry to bring our rosewood which is of better value than Swedish rosewood.

Mr Speaker, on 1st June, 2015 …

Mr Lubinda: Bauze mwana.

Mrs Mwanakatwe: … God spoke with me earlier than Hon. Lt-Gen. Rev. Shikapwasha.


Mr Speaker: Order!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, when he spoke with me, he spoke in my language. So, allow me to say it and then translate.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: He said, “Maggie mwanawane, …

Mr Lubinda: Yowoya mwanangu.

Mrs Mwanakatwe: … ukavu umalenge chifukwa chakuti iyi Government ya a Lungu ikugwila nchinto chomene.”


Mr Speaker: Order!

Can you, please, translate?

Mr Lubinda: Yowoya mwanangu!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, allow me to translate.

Mr Speaker: Order!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Margaret my daughter, poverty in Zambia is going to end because this Government of His Excellency the President Edgar Chagwa Lungu is working very hard.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order!

Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, in conclusion, I have total confidence in the fact that this K60 billion is going to be properly utilised by this Government. I have total confidence that, going forward, everybody in this House will see what the PF Government is doing. I have every confidence because my Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) will be a beneficiary in empowering the ten districts of Zambia. This money will be properly utilised.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order!

Let us have some silence, please.

The Minister of Finance (Mr Chikwanda): Mr Speaker, let me start by expressing my unqualified thanks to all hon. Members who have debated this Motion, and for the admonitions given in very good faith. I believe that the debate has been long and characterised by passion merely serves to underscore the gravity of the issues involved in borrowing large sums of money, particularly as that relates to external borrowing. The legitimacy and moral plausibility of the concerns and anxieties of the hon. Members cannot be eroded or negated by any exaggerations, inaccuracies, and inclinations to populism, or even vain endeavours to enlist dubious accolades.

Mr Speaker, as leaders of our country, we all share a common duty to desist from acts of fiscal irresponsibility. This is the only way we can safeguard the interest of the country to ensure that our country’s economy rests on an even keel. This is our legacy to posterity. The money we borrow has to be repaid and there is a basic assumption that the country will continually grow at a sufficiently robust and sustainable pace to ensure capacity and ability to service the debt repayment. By holding the Government to account, hon. Members on the other side of the House are playing their role as custodians of the interests of our people, who in their collective wisdom, entrusted that mandate to the hon. Members. The people must, indeed, feel that they did not misplace or misallocate their trust and confidence.

Mr Speaker, there is a compelling need for me to put a number of issues in place and context. At the beginning of the century, Zambia was in some debt trap because our external debts, which were excessive, as the hon. Minister for Commerce, Trade and Industry has observed, and which were in excess of US$7 billion, exceeded our gross domestic product (GDP), which stood at around US$6 billion. The debt was dismantled by Zambia accumulating what are called special drawing rights with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).These were used to settle the bulk of the debt owed to the IMF. Subsequently, a facility on more concessional terms was arranged with the IMF. Countries in the international community that embraced the noble ideals of our common humanity cancelled the balance of the debt and Zambia still remains eternally grateful for the humanity and generosity of these countries that came to our rescue at our greatest hour of need. The Zambian people made huge sacrifices for the country to fulfill the programme with the IMF. They deserve our consideration and appreciation for their selflessness.

Mr Speaker, very often, we the leaders have very over-pronounced egos and want to attribute all the successes of the Government programmes to ourselves. We make the role of the people who incurred certain sacrifices in order for the country to proceed peripheral and that is why I am putting this matter in proper context by saying that the Zambian people made huge sacrifices, while we ran programmes with the IMF which ultimately resulted in our accumulation of enough special drawing rights to repay the debt that we owed to the IMF, and for the IMF to rearrange other facilities which were on more concessional terms. Of course, it would be remiss of our Government if it did not give due credit to those of our citizens who were in the Government at that time for the courage, and for taking the plunge in order to put the country on a programme of austerity, which enabled us to put the huge debt behind us. Therefore, those of our colleagues who were in the Boma, and who are seeking accolades, here they are, accept our unfettered gratitude for the role that you played.

Mr Speaker, since that debt overhang, Zambia has moved on and we have grown the country’s GDP to higher levels. Debt repayment annually, and at times when we should make the huge payments to repay the bonds, will always remain a very significant challenge. So far, we have made interest repayments on time, when they are due, and we should, and we will continue to do so. It is these prompt servicing of our external debt obligations that our credibility and bankability lay. Therefore, our task is to ensure that we engender sustainable growth rates, which enable us to seek recourse and have access to the global market places. If we did not service our debt obligations on time, none of those fund managers would put their money at risk.

Mr Speaker, hon. Members have made reference to debt trouble spots like Greece, which has a debt stock of around 317 billion euros, which is 180 per cent of that country’s GDP. It is prudent that we learn lessons from such situations and resolve to avoid such debt traps. In relation to Greece, it is likely that Western countries, especially those in the Euro Zone, will help Greece to meet its US$1.7 billion that must be paid to the IMF on 30th June, 2015. We will not have that privilege, as an African country, if we develop an inability to service the debt. The people in the Western sphere, the Americans and Europeans, will not come to our rescue. Therefore, we have to soldier on our own and make sure that we avoid getting into situations like that. That would be a lesson for us, and not to sensationalise things and put things out of context for purposes of securing doubtful scoring points.

Mr Speaker, we are asking Parliament to raise the amount outstanding in loans to K60 billion, to take account of the mounting needs that are getting the country’s development to higher levels that we require. We require this money in order to carry further, the country’s ambitious development and transformative agenda under the Patriotic Front (PF) Government. We will not get the borrowing to that level in the next anticipated borrowing because in any case, it would make external annual debt servicing an intractable task.

Mr Speaker, in due course, when we get the Sinking Fund operational, we will, in the next Budget, and subsequent Budget, put significant resources into that Sinking Fund.

The prudent fiscal responsibility and resource husbandry will be concretised. I hope and pray that hon. Members will realise that this process will entail a rationalisation of expenditure, and consequently, a deceleration in outlays on many development projects, as the only we can contain deficits which arise from unbudgeted for projects. I am grateful to the hon. Member for Bweengwa for having called attention to the need to avoid unbudgeted for projects.

Mr Speaker, rolling back expenditure will be a futility if we do not vigorously push expansion in growth sectors such as agriculture, energy and the information and communication technology (ICT) sectors, to mention, but a few. Hon. Members may not realise that fiscal discipline has already started. Of the K20 billion deficit, the Government has already re-aligned expenditure by cutting off K5 billion from those items of expenditure which were found to be dispensable. This was at the behest of our controlling officers whose realism and responsibility I can only applaud and commend. The K8.5 billion approved by this House in the 2015 Budget will be covered by the Bank of Zambia selling Government securities. It is this process of the Government borrowing money from the market at stiff interest consideration that, as Governor of the Central Bank rightly observed, pushes up the interest rates that are inhibitive to enterprises and to all those of us who at one time or another have to borrow from the banks in order to meet our needs.

It is the cost of local borrowing that has induced us to tap the opportunity to borrow from the external market at a relatively more affordable cost. External borrowing, in the very short term, will be salutary on our reserves and even the kwacha parity. What is important and urgent is to generate higher rates of growth, as I have stressed in this humble submission.

Mr Speaker, I enjoin hon. Members to put the issues of external borrowing in a larger context and support this Motion. The alternative is to stall development and trigger the irreversible economic deceleration. This Motion is beyond partisan boundaries and is not an occasion for us to settle scores. One hon. Member has already indicated a spirit of vengeance by intimating that heads will roll in the most unlikely event that the political party of that particular hon. Member forms Government.

Mr Chikwanda: In the most unlikely event.

Mr Livune: Question!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, let me passionately plead with hon. Members to avoid habouring hatred because those who hate become victims of their hatred.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, just a simple matter of psychology, as human beings, our social existence only has meaning in the context of other people, who in their weakness and strength are a mirror image of us. Hatred, thus, reduces our own humanity. When we rise to levels where we are hon. Members of Parliament, our brief should be human fellowship and not being apostles, high priests and priestesses ...


Mr Chikwanda: …of petty hatreds. We are all members of this large family called Zambia to which we owe an inescapable duty. We all, in this House, have a vested interest to do everything possible to forestall financial indiscipline and irresponsibility.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, there is no externally sourced money that is used on recurrent expenditure. All the bond proceeds are used on growth promoting projects. The money injected into Government-sponsored lending institutions is for small and medium enterprises which undertake activities that generate employment and mitigate poverty. This point has been very well illustrated by the resourceful colleague, the hon. Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry.

Mr Speaker, where there is abuse or resource misdirection, we all have cause to be angry and we should strive to stop those things that set our country back. For some of us, it is not all the worrisome fiscal deficits that are a cause for concern and anguish. Glaring commitment and integrity deficits, that are becoming the order of the day in our country, inflict a lot of pain because these slippages are a recipe for regression and not progress.

Mr Speaker, as a Government we deem it an inescapable moral imperative to assure Zambians that we will not breech the trust and confidence that people have reposed in us to preside over their destiny by borrowing beyond the country’s capacity to service the obligations.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, both the IMF and the World Bank, as Breton Wood Institutions, have cautioned about borrowing. Their voices cannot be brushed aside. However, people should know that it is not all the time that these institutions are right. Quite often, individuals in these institutions express views which are not representative of the institutions’ overall disposition. Sometimes, the views of those individuals in those institutions belong more to the area of theology than economic realities, which are peculiar and unique to each country.

Mr Speaker, I, once again, thank the hon. Members on both sides of the House, not the divide because there is no divide here, for supporting this Motion …

Hon. UPND Members: Question!

Mr Chikwanda: …which will help the country. I am sure Hon. Muntanga has changed his mind and will support the Motion.

Mr Muntanga: Ah!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: On a point of order, Sir.


Mr Speaker: Order!

I will invite the hon. Minister to withdraw that remark.

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, I abide by your guidance and I apologise without reservation.


Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, I again thank the hon. Members on both sides of the House because I like I said there is no divide for supporting this motion which will help the country to bridge a resource gap that would imperil our country’s development prospects if left unattended to, in the absence of any other meaningful or veritable options.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Question that, in terms of Section 3 of the Loans and Guarantees (Authorisation) Act, Chapter 366 of the Laws of Zambia, this House authorises the Minister of Finance to increase, by Statutory Instrument, the amount outstanding at any one time on external loans from thirty-five billion kwacha to sixty billion kwacha put and the House voted.

Ayes – (74)

Mrs Banda
Mr N. Banda
Mr I. Banda
Mr Bwalya
Mr Chabala
Colonel Chanda
Mr Chansa
Mr Chenda
Mr Chikwanda
Mr Chilangwa
Mr Chilufya
Mr Chingimbu
Mr Chisala
Mr Chishimba
Mr Chisopa
Mr Chitotela
Mr S. Chungu
Mrs A. Chungu
Ms Kabanshi
Mr Kafwaya
Ms Kalima
Ms Kapata
Brig-Gen. Kapaya
Mr Kapeya
Mr Kapyanga
Dr Kasonde
Mr Katambo
Dr Katema
Colonel Kaunda
Mrs Kawandami
Mr Kosamu
Mr Kufuna
Mr Lingweshi
Mr Lubinda
Dr E. Lungu
Colonel J. Lungu
Professor Luo
Mr Mabumba
Mr M. Malama
Mr Mwimba M. Malama
Mr Masumba
Mr Mbulu
Ms Miti
Mr Monde
Mrs Mphande
Mr Mubukwanu
Mr Mumba
Mr Mushanga
Mr Musonda
Mr Musukwa
Mr Mutale
Mr Mvunga
Dr Mwali
Mr Mwaliteta
Mrs Mwanakatwe
Mr Mwango
Mr Mwenya
Mr Mwewa
Mr Mwila
Ms Ngimbu
Mr P. Ngoma
Mr Ng’onga
Mr Njeulu
Dr J. Phiri
Mr Shamenda
Mr Siamunene
Mr Sichalwe
Mr Sichone
Mr Sichula
Mr Sikazwe
Mr Simbao
Dr Simbyakula
Mr Simuusa
Mr Zulu

Noes – (41)

Mr Antonio
Mr W. Banda
Mr Chipungu
Mr Chitafu
Brig-Gen. Dr Chituwo
Mr Hamududu
Mr Hamudulu
Mr Hamusonde
Ms Imenda
Dr Kalila
Mr Katuka
Mr Kunda
Mr Livune
Mr Lombanya
Ms Lubezhi
Mr Lufuma
Professor Lungwangwa
Mrs Masebo
Mrs Mazoka
Mr Mbulakulima
Mr Milambo
Mr Miyanda
Mr Miyutu
Mr Mtolo
Mr Mucheleka
Mr Mufalali
Mr Mulomba
Mr Muntanga
Dr Musokotwane
Mr Mutati
Mr Mutelo
Mr Mwiimbu
Ms Namugala
Mr L. Ngoma Sinda
Mr Nkombo
Mr Ntundu
Mr Pande
Mr P. Phiri
Ms Sayifwanda
Mr Sianga
Mr Sing'ombe

Abstentions (01)

Mr C. Banda, SC.

Question that, in terms of Section 3 of the Loans and Guarantees (Authorisation) Act, Chapter 366 of the Laws of Zambia, this House authorises the Minister of Finance to increase, by Statutory Instrument, the amount outstanding at any one time on external loans from thirty-five billion kwacha to sixty billion kwacha accordingly agreed to.



The Minister of Justice and Acting Leader of Government Business in the House (Dr Simbyakula): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.

The House adjourned at 1927 hours until 0900 hours on Friday, 26th June, 2015.