Debates - Thursday, 23rd July, 2015

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Thursday, 23rd July, 2015

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]





Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, in the absence of Her Honour the Vice-President, who is attending to other important Government business, Hon. Yamfwa D. Mukanga, MP, Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication and also Government Chief Whip, has been appointed Acting Leader of Government Business in the House from today, Thursday, 23rd July, 2015, until further notice.


Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, I wish to inform you that the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Zambia Branch has organised a one day seminar for all hon. Members of Parliament. The seminar will be held on Monday, 27th July, 2015, in the auditorium at Parliament Buildings from 0900 hours to 1600 hours.

The seminar will discuss topical issues on the CPA such as the role of parliamentarians in addressing the decline in the access to quality education in Africa and evaluate the emergent content of the post 2015 Development Agenda against the standard set out in the Commonwealth Charter, and how Parliament can ensure that young people are placed at the centre stage of sustainable development vis-à-vis the role of education.

I, therefore, wish to appeal to all hon. Members to attend this very important seminar.

I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!



669. Dr Musokotwane (Liuwa) asked the Minister of Community Development, Mother and Child Health when new mattresses would be procured for the following health posts in Liuwa Parliamentary Constituency:

(a)    Kuuli;

(b)    Libonda; and

(c)    Lukena.

The Deputy Minister of Community Development, Mother and Child Health (Mr Chisala): Mr Speaker, Kalabo District has received a total of 107 mattresses, as a donation from the Centre for Infectious Disease Research in Zambia (CIDRZ) and all the health facilities will be provided with these mattresses equally based on the need. The distribution is scheduled for next week when the officers from these health facilities attend the district planning launch.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Musokotwane: Mr Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. Minister for his response and also thank the donors who provided the mattresses.

Hon. Minister, when will you now provide these clinics with motorcycles …


Dr Musokotwane: … so that the health workers can collect medicines without walking for four days?

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, although this is a new Question …

Mr Speaker: Hon. Minister, I did not even allow you to answer it.


Mr Speaker: However, if you want to give a bonus answer, proceed. You are not compelled.

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, although this is not part of the Question, I would advise the hon. Member for Liuwa to sit down with the district medical officer and make a humble request to our office and we shall look into it.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe (Chadiza): Mr Speaker, some of these clinics in Liuwa Constituency may have been built using the Constituency Development Fund (CDF). Elsewhere in Zambia, the same might have happened.  

Mr Speaker, I’d like to find out from the Hon. Minister whether these clinics or health posts, which were constructed using the CDF will be provided with mattresses and other equipment to facilitate operation.

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, institutions that have been built using the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) are Government institutions. This being the case, the hon. Member of Parliament, if he is in such a situation, can write to the ministry which will definitely respond positively.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Konga (Chavuma): Mr Speaker, ...

Mr Mwiimbu: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, I rise to raise a point of order with a very heavy heart, considering that, yesterday, we debated a Motion that was moved by Hon. Masebo urging the Government to control the use of firearms. In that debate, the issues of pangas and other offensive weapons were raised.

Sir, this morning, members of the public who escorted Hon. Masebo to the Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) when she was called to be interviewed were hacked with impunity by Patriotic Front (PF) cadres who were on their way to see His Excellency the President off. These cadres caused mayhem in the town centre of Lusaka. These cadres were behaving as if they were agreeing that there is no need to control the use of offensive weapons like my colleagues on your right said yesterday.

Mr Speaker, are our colleagues on your right in order to allow a situation of lawlessness to reign in this country after assuring us, yesterday, that they would do something in order to control party cadres? Are they in order to allow such situations to obtain in this country? We are all aware that those PF cadres had no authority from the police to have a procession.

Mr Speaker: I will request the hon. Minister of Home Affairs to clarify that position, not immediately, but in due course.

Mr Mwiimbu indicated assent.

Mr Speaker: The hon. Member for Chavuma may continue.

Mr Konga: Mr Speaker, in his response to the question by the hon. Member for Liuwa, the hon. Minister indicated that about 107 mattresses have been received by Kalabo Hospital which will distribute them to those rural health centres. Will those 107 mattresses be adequate for all the bed spaces in those rural health centres?

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member of Parliament only asked about four health facilities in his question. As a result, we have calculated that since we do not admit patients at health posts and only lodge them for twenty-four hours after which we refer them to health centres or district hospitals, we believe that these mattresses are more than enough.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, since patients will be lodged for twenty-four hours, are these mattresses accompanied by linen or does the ministry intend to buy some linen? If not, is it the patients who are supposed to bring linen to use on the mattresses?

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, although that sounds like a new question, I will provide a bonus answer. The ministry has only managed to provide mattresses and not linen. Like I indicated when answering the previous hon. Member’s question, the best solution in such a situation is to make a humble request and the Government will respond to that.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kalila (Lukulu East): Mr Speaker, could the hon. Minister shed more light on the issue of linen. Does it take a request to know that if you provide mattresses it goes without saying that they go with linen? Is ministry waiting until somebody requests or is it within their planning process to provide linen to these health centres?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order!

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, there is a general belief that there are already mattresses and linen in these health centres. However, if there is a need at a particular institution, the best thing to be done is to let us know whether the facility has linen or not and that is when the ministry will provide it. It is very difficult for us to know whether they have linen or not if we are not written to by the district medical officer.

I thank you, Sir.

Prof. Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda): Mr Speaker, can the hon. Deputy Minister be specific so that we are sure that there will be some benefit going to the rural health centres. Can he give us the average proportional distribution of the 107 mattresses per rural health centre? He says he has made some calculations so can he give us the figures?

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, as I indicated, 107 mattresses have been sent to Kalabo. That being the case, each health facility will only receive four mattresses.

I thank you, Sir.

Brig-Gen. Dr Chituwo (Mumbwa): Mr Speaker, in one of the responses, the hon. Minister said that these health posts hold patients for only twenty-four hours. Is he not aware that the initial concept has been overwhelmed by the need for patients to have in-patient care and, therefore, need for the ministry to plan for the purchase of beds and mattresses? Can you clarify that?

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, we are aware and it is for this reason that I have been emphasising that in this scenario, whenever there is a need at a particular institution, it is important for them to write to us. We know that mattresses and linen are on high demand.

I thank you, sir.


670.    Mr Miyanda (Mapatizya) (on behalf of Mr Miyutu) (Kalabo Central) asked the Minster of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education:

(a)    what the rationale for introducing identity cards in public schools countrywide was;

(b)    whether the acquisition of the cards was compulsory for all pupils; and

(c)    what the penalty for failing to pay for cards, especially in rural schools, was.

The Deputy Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education (Mr Mabumba): Mr Speaker, the only identity cards introduced in schools are those for examination classes such as Grade 7, 9 and 12. This is a requirement by the Examination Council of Zambia (ECZ) for proper identification of candidates sitting for the examinations. The cards are compulsory for those in Grade 7, 9 and 12.

Sir, the penalty for not acquiring the cards is that the candidate may be barred from writing the examination.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Miyanda: Mr Speaker, what is the cost of these cards?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, obviously, the costs of these cards vary from one school to another. I would rather say that looking at some of the schools, some cards cost as much as K30.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, I have heard the hon. Minister categorically state that it is only mandatory to have identification cards for the examination classes. Is the hon. Minister not aware that every pupil in these schools is required to have an identification card by school authorities and that if they do not have an identification card, they are sent away? If he is aware, what measures will be put in place against those school authorities that are sending pupils away from school because they have no identity cards?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, in a situation where schools require all the pupils to have identification cards, of course, it is for the purpose of their safety or security. For example, in the event of an accident when children are travelling from one province to another for sports, it would be easy to identify them if they have identification cards. You will also find that some of the schools would require that all the pupils must have their identification cards for that purpose. It is not compulsory that if a pupil does not carry that identification card, he is supposed to be sent away. We do not have that policy in the ministry. However, those are local decisions that are made at school level by the Parent-Teacher Associations (PTAs). If there are situations of that nature where hon. Members of Parliament are coming from, I think I would be very interested to know so that we can engage the school authorities.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sing’ombe (Dundumwezi): Mr Speaker, why is this ministry against the pupils in rural areas? There are no cameras in rural areas. You will find that if a pupil in Nkandanzovu wants to get an identification card, it will take him or her to look for K50 or K100 to travel to Choma to just obtain a card that is costing K10. You have failed to provide computers in these schools. Therefore, why are you bringing up the issue of identification cards now?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, we are not trying to discriminate against pupils in the rural areas. This practice has been there for many years. Like I said, specifically for those that are in examination classes, what has been happening is that candidates have had other people write examinations on their behalf. For the Examination Council of Zambia (ECZ) to ensure that the pupils who are writing the examinations were truly those that are supposed to write the examinations, they need identification cards. This is why I said that as far as we are concerned, for examination purposes, the Grade 7s, Grade 9s and Grade 12s are supposed to have the identification cards.

Sir, where the PTA makes a decision on behalf of the school that the identification cards are supposed to be carried by all the pupils, it does not mean that we are trying to discriminate against pupils who have to walk a long distance to obtain them4. In fact, in some cases, we have some districts that have ended up meeting the costs of identification cards because they know that some of the pupils may not be able to meet the costs. The goodness is that it is not a compulsory process that would require a child to be sent away from school.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamudulu (Siavonga): Mr Speaker, I am failing to follow what the hon. Minister is saying. The hon. Minister is now saying that the issue of identity cards is not compulsory. In another breath, he said it could be required by the Parents Teachers’ Association (PTA) in which case, it becomes mandatory. For example, here is a pupil who is travelling on a tour of duty with the school for sports and we are told that such a pupil has to meet the cost for his or her identification card in order to cross from one district to another. With that information, are you just going to let this situation continue or you are going to intervene so that such costs are met by the school? I am saying so because the pupil is on duty.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, in most cases, that fee to do with the identification cards will be paid together with the user fees. At the time when a pupil goes to pay the school fees, he or she would also be required to pay the fees for the identification cards, that is for those schools that are charging for the identification cards. Where the schools are not requiring that amount of money, then, the pupils will not be required to pay. For example, I looked at five schools and out of them, there was only one school which I cannot name, which was charging pupils for the identification cards. So, you will find that it is varying from one school to the other, but in most cases, some of the schools are not charging with the exception of a few.

I thank you, Sir.


671. Mr Namulambe (Mpongwe) asked the Minister of Foreign Affairs:
(a)    whether there is any boundary dispute between Zambia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo on Lake Tanganyika;  and

(b)    if so, what measures had been taken to resolve the dispute.
The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs (Mr Mbulu): Mr Speaker, may I inform this august House that in as much as there is no known border dispute between Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on Lake Tanganyika, meetings to mark out, demarcate and reaffirm borders along the lake are underway. This is in an effort to address the issue surrounding common borders of about 500km between the DRC and Tanzania, 90km of Tanzania and Zambia and 110km between the DRC and Burundi. Owing to the shared waters, there has been a need to involve other riparian countries during the reaffirmation or in other cases demarcation process, especially when dealing with the tripartite points. It is against this background that Zambia too is engaged in the African Union Boundary Programme (AUBP) which was established by the African Union (AU) on 7th June, 2007, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to mark out, demarcate and reaffirm borders based on existing protocols as well as bilateral agreements.

Mr Speaker, I wish to further inform this august House that the Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection, Ministry of Home Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will collaboratively undertake this process by a delimitation exercise by an Ortho-rectified Satellite and Global Co-ordinate System on the lake and a physical establishment of the median line and tripartite points common to Burundi, the DRC and Tanzania on one hand, and the DRC, Tanzania and Zambia on the other hand.

Mr Speaker, in addition to this, you may wish to note that each of the four countries will contribute in the procurement cost of the satellite service in proportion to its segment on the waters of the lake.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, during the tour of the Committee on Agriculture, we interacted with the community in Nsumbu area who informed us that Zambians were being harassed by the Congolese soldiers who have moved some kilometres inside the Zambian territory and that the district officials in Kasama are aware about it. Is the ministry not going to investigate this matter since our Zambian people are being harassed?

Mr Mbulu: Mr Speaker, we are getting this information for the first time. Ordinarily, we could have appreciated Hon. Namulambe to have taken a proactive stance. If you had reported earlier, interventions would have been made.

I thank you, Sir.

Rev. Lt-Gen Shikapwasha (Keembe): Mr Speaker, your Committee on National Security and Foreign Affairs submitted a report on the Floor of the House informing it and the hon. Minister that Zambians were being abducted on the shores of Lake Tanganyika in Nsumbu and the Government had to pay money for them to be released from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Is the hon. Minister in order to say that he did not know about this information when a report was submitted and people need help in Nsumbu?

Mr Mbulu: Mr Speaker, Hon. Rev. Lt-Gen. Shikapwasha may be aware that we have the Zambia-DRC Joint Permanent Commission (JPC) and issues of a pertinent nature are normally discussed at regular intervals. I know that, obviously, such an issue, even prior to Hon. Namulambe having brought it here, could have, perhaps, taken centre stage. However, the commission just gathered this information which to me sounds fresher than the issue that Hon. Rev. Lt-Gen. Shikapwasha referred to. I want to reassure this House that we will not sit idle. This information has come our way and there is no need for us to roll our sleeves. All we can do for now is to engage our colleagues through the JPC and if there was a lapse, we can always correct it.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Simfukwe (Mbala): Mr Speaker, while there might be no conflict between the two governments, there is several conflict between the people of Zambia and the people of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The hon. Minister needs to update this House in response to this issue of disputes between the two groups of people and not the two governments. When are the beacons that he mentioned in his answer likely to be erected because this has been the outstanding matter so that the two groups of people can know where their countries’ boundaries lie?

Mr Mbulu: Mr Speaker, let me just indicate the kind of pro-active measures that our Government has put in place. We, as a Government, have already contracted a company called Geodata Design of South Africa. This company is one among those that have been commissioned by the African Union (AU) to supply this technology. So, the Government is committed and, obviously, sooner than later, these works will be undertaken because the project has already been costed.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central): Mr Speaker, this question of the boundaries has been asked before in this House and there was an agreement that the Government would put floating beacons on that site. It was also stated that, at that time, a budget had already been drawn. I would like to know the reason the beacons have not been put on the site, as was promised by the Government in this House?

Mr Mbulu: Mr Speaker, I just indicated to this honourable House that a contractor has already been picked. For the sake of Hon. Muntanga, the cost of the project as of February, 2014, is 493,824 Euros. So, when there is an apportionment of a figure in the planning process, it means that there is commitment, which is quite practical and I am sure this project will soon be executed.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mbulakulima (Chembe): Mr Speaker, the Committee on Agriculture and National Security found this sensitive information on the ground while the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is not aware of it. How does the hon. Minister describe State security? Is it failing them?

Mr Mbulu: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member has been in the Government before. We have the Joint Operations Command and because of the sensitive nature that security matters assume, we cannot go out there and sing songs of how the Government handles such matters. However, Hon. Namulambe has just reported about this matter because the Committee on Agriculture came from there. As hon. Members of Parliament, there is a need for us to exercise some spirit of patriotism. When we discover something that we believe can be an impediment to the security of the nation, it is better to report in good time so that adequate and appropriate steps are quickly taken.

I thank you, Sir.

Prof. Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, the process of marking out ...

Rev. Lt-Gen Shikapwasha: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Rev. Lt-Gen Shikapwasha: Mr Speaker, your Committee gave a report to this House on the prisons and His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia was magnanimous. He went ahead and solved the problem of prisons’ ranks and he acted very quickly. Is the hon. Minister in order to state, on the Floor of this House, that there was no report given in good time when this report was given on the Floor of this House? I need your serious ruling.

Mr Speaker: Hon. Minister, as you conclude responding to the question to be posed by the hon. Member for Nalikwanda, please, make the point clear.

Prof. Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, the process of demarcating and confirming the boundaries on our lake is a complicated and expensive one. The hon. Minister has admitted that it will cost 493,824 Euros, and clearly the use of satellites will be very costly. Why has the Government not taken into account the Pan African Satellite System which might be cheaper comparatively, I suppose, than the Geodata Design Company of South Africa which might be, I think, a private satellite company?

Mr Mbulu: Mr Speaker, comparatives were done and the best option was picked. I need to reassure Hon. Prof. Lungwangwa that a cost benefit analysis was actually undertaken. With regard to the issue raised by Hon. Shikapwasha, the Government has no intention to be defensive whatsoever. The Zambia-DRC JPC is actually on top of things. If the Government had known about this matter, it could have gone a step further than where we are right now. So, I assure Hon. Shikapwasha that we are doing our best to ensure that the security of people is guaranteed. This is because even when it comes to issues of trade, economic developments and linkages between us and amongst other countries, unless and until security is guaranteed, we could actually be labouring in vain.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


672. Mr Miyanda (on behalf of Mr Miyutu) (Kalabo Central) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a)    what happened to the K20,000 that was allocated to Kalabo for upgrading the water supply in the district; and

(b)    when works to upgrade the water supply system would commence.

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr N. Banda): Mr Speaker, Kalabo District Council allocated K20,000, from the Constituency Development Fund (CDF), towards the upgrading of the water system. The amount was meant to be transferred to the Western Water and Sewerage Company to use for the upgrading of the water system. However, the amount was found to be insufficient for that purpose. It was, therefore, not disbursed to the Western Water and Sewerage Company, but was retained in the CDF account for Kalabo.

Sir, the Ministry of Local Government and Housing, with the support of the KFW of Germany, embarked on the upgrading the water system in Kalabo. A pre-feasibility study to assess the scope of works was done and completed in September, 2014.

Mr Speaker, currently, procurement of a consultant to undertake detailed design and preparation of tender documents for the project is being done. All things being equal, 2016 should see the water works in Kalabo completed.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Miyanda: Mr Speaker, water is life and the people of Kalabo need clean water. If K20,000 was not sufficient to upgrade the water system in Kalabo, how much is required to upgrade the facility?

Mr N. Banda: Mr Speaker, I have indicated that, as at now, the consultant is being engaged to assess the amount of works which are required to upgrade the system, which is dilapidated,. However, the K20,000 was not enough to upgrade the system. The House may wish to know that in some areas, K20,000 is not enough to drill a borehole. So, that money was not enough.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Musokotwane: Mr Speaker, on several occasions, residents of Kalabo have suffered from waterborne diseases such as dysentery. I think, two years ago, there was an outbreak of dysentery. Considering the fact that the area hon. Member of Parliament thought it important to put aside some money to deal with the situation, why did the ministry not take this as an emergency, given that lives were involved, instead of waiting for the donors who have to engage the consultants and in the meantime, the rainy season is just on the verge of coming.

Mr N. Banda: Mr Speaker, the situation in Kalabo District is that there is water supply, but it is not adequate. To alleviate that problem, the ministry has decided to overhaul the system which is broken now. So, we are engaging the consultant to overhaul and resolve the water situation for Kalabo in complete.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Livune (Katombola): Mr Speaker, if I heard the hon. Minister well, he said that the K20,000 was inadequate and at the same time, he said that the consultant was still evaluating or trying to quantify the amount that will be required to undertake this important project. I would like to learn how he assessed that the K20,000 was inadequate when there is still work being done to ascertain how much is to be spent.

The Minister of Local Government and Housing (Dr Phiri): Mr Speaker, let me first pay tribute to the Constituency Development Committee (CDF) Committee of Kalabo for the decision that it made. That decision was arrived at precisely because of what Hon. Dr Musokotwane has just talked the House. The water crisis in Kalabo demanded from the hon. Member of Parliament and the council an emergency effort to try to change this situation. However, the K20,000 amount of effort was not enough. This is why now, as a ministry, we have decided to look at other avenues of trying to redress this crisis that our people are facing in Kalabo, hence these efforts that the hon. Deputy Minister has paraded.

Sir, we are hoping that with the help of the co-operating partner from Germany, we should change the water situation in Kalabo as quickly as possible and, unfortunately, that can only fall in 2016.

I thank you, Sir.


673. Mr Mbewe asked the hon. Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education when Grade 10 classes would be introduced at the following schools in Chadiza District:

(a)    Naviruli;

(b)    Nsadzu; and

(c)    Bwanunkha

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, as regards Naviruli, the Catholic Church submitted an application to the ministry for authority to open Grade 10 classes, next year, at the school. It is expected that once an inspection is undertaken to access the levels of preparedness, the school will introduce Grade 10 classes in 2016.

Sir, regarding Nsadzu, similarly, the Reformed Church of Zambia also has plans to open Grade 10 classes, next year. However, the church is yet to apply for authority from the ministry to proceed with the commencement of a Grade 10 class.

Mr Speaker, with regard to Bwanunkha, at the moment, there are no plans to upgrade this school to include a day secondary school section as that decision will have to be made when we start upgrading primary schools in the next phase once Phase I is completed.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister for the good answer. That is why we like him.


Mr Mbewe: When will the ministry grant authority to the Catholic Church and the Reformed Church of Zambia so that they open these schools? According to his answer, they have applied for authority, but it seems the ministry has not yet given them a go ahead.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, of course, the consolation is that we have a window between now and December in which we have to sort out the issues of these applications, especially, in part (a) of the question because the Catholic Church has already submitted an application. However, like I have said, it is just a question of the ministry carrying out those inspections to assess whether the school is ready and has the infrastructure and probably the teachers to start classes in Grade 10. Obviously, this will be done this year. I also want to assure my colleagues that, in 2016, the Grade 10 classes will begin in Navurili.

Sir, regarding Nsadzu where the Reformed Church of Zambia has not yet applied, I would seek the intervention of my friend, Hon. Mbewe. He will ask the church to apply to the ministry so that between now and December, we can look at the application and assess the school’s infrastructure and the teaching staff so that if the requirements are met, they can start the Grade 10 classes in January, 2016.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kazabu (Nkana): Mr Speaker, in the absence of Grade 10 classes at the named schools, where do the pupils of these schools go to after Grade 9? If they go to other schools, what are the distances involved?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, that is a very loaded question. What I know for Chadiza District is that, at least, we have Chadiza Boarding Secondary School. So, many pupils in Chadiza go to Chadiza Secondary School. Then, there are about three other schools which are being upgraded at which we have Grade 10 classes that are being upgraded. I am sure hon. Mbewe would agree with me.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chipungu (Rufunsa): Mr Speaker, as the ministry goes to inspect schools, what will it be looking for before granting them permission to upgrade to secondary school?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, like I said, if we have to introduce Grade 10 classes at schools running from Grade 1 up to Grade 9, one of our assessments will be to establish whether the school has additional classes in which to enroll the Grade 10 pupils. Secondly, we will consider the availability of teachers. Do those schools have the teachers who can teach in Grade 10? The other aspect to be looked at is whether the school has laboratories. So, once those assessments have been done, then, authority can be granted for them to begin enrolling Grade 10 pupils.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Ndalamei (Sikongo): Mr Speaker, Bwanunkha has already moulded bricks and prepared the stones and sand for building classrooms. How will the ministry assist the people there?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, in Chadiza, we are upgrading two schools and these are being funded by the ministry. We do not want to over-commit ourselves because the upgrading of the other two schools is on-going. I suppose that even going into 2016, we will still be building additional infrastructure at those schools. However, if the people have already prepared some materials like bricks and sand, then, we can engage Hon. Mbewe and see how best we can help that school.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mucheleka (Lubansenshi): Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister has mentioned one of the schools being run by the Catholic Church or missionaries. Would an application to upgrade a school being run by the church be considered, especially if that particular school has some basic infrastructure? Would Ipusukilo Mission School in Lubansenshi Parliamentary Constituency also be considered for upgrading?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, Hon. Mucheleka should have brought that question yesterday, but since he was not around and he is my friend, it is okay. Even for Ipusukilo, the same criteria would have to be used. If the local authorities apply to the ministry, stating the availability of infrastructure, teachers and facilities which are at the school, we will consider the applications on a case-by-case basis. I know that Ipusukilo Mission School is being run by the Catholic Church. So, we would consider the applications based on what I have stated.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Livune (Katombola): Mr Speaker, in one of his responses, the hon. Deputy Minister, ...

Prof. Lungwangwa: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Prof. Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, I appreciate you giving me this opportunity to raise a point of order. Is the hon. Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education in order not to bring to this House a policy statement on the upgrading of primary schools to secondary schools? This is a very complicated policy process, which has very far-reaching implications on the quality of education in our country. Is he in order not to do that so that we, as Members of Parliament representing our people in various parts of the country, can engage the ministry on this very important policy dimension?

Sir, I need your serious ruling.

Mr Speaker: You know, some of these points of order are meant to ask questions, especially when the curtain has been closed.


Mr Speaker: Hon. Minister, please, just supply some information on that subject as we close.

Mr Livune: Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister made reference to the fact that one of these schools will only be accommodated after the completion of Phase I. So, when will this phase end to give room for other considerations?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, our initial plan was to build one by six classroom blocks and three staff houses at each of those schools. However, we were not able to do that due to budgetary constraints. So, I foresee the completion of Phase I going into 2016.

Sir, as for Hon. Prof. Lungwangwa’s point of order, in June, 2015, I was in Muchinga Province as part of the learning process on how the upgrading reform process is going on. With regard to the project of upgrading 220 primary schools into day secondary schools, I want to assure him that Muchinga Province is one good example. At first, as a ministry, we thought it was not going to be a successful programme, but as far as it is concerned, I can safely say that it is a success story. I am sure that is the same for the other provinces too. When I went to Muchinga Province, I found classrooms and staff houses being built at the schools that we are upgrading. Whether the ministry could update this House on that matter is an issue that we can discuss in the ministry.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.




THE INCOME TAX (Amendment) BILL, 2015.

The Minister of Finance (Mr Chikwanda): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the Bill be now read a second time.

Sir, the Bill before the House is principally seeking to amend the Income Tax Act in order to:

(a)    increase the tax rate on income earned from mining operations from 0 to 30 per cent;

(b)    re-introduce the variable profit tax rate up to 15 per cent for mining operations;

(c)    limit the deduction of losses brought forward for mining operations to 50 per cent of taxable income;

(d)    increase the tax rate on income earned from mineral processing from 30 per cent to 35 per cent; and

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

Mr Speaker, the Bill is straight forward and I recommend it to the House.

Sir, I beg to move.

Mr Hamududu (Bweengwa): Mr Speaker, your Committee considered the Income Tax (Amendment) Bill, National Assembly Bill No. 7 of 2015. Most of the witnesses that appeared before your Committee welcomed the re-introduction of a two-tier tax system for the mines. That is a combination of profit taxes and the Mineral Royalty Tax. However, most of the witnesses who appeared before your Committee raised the following concerns:

(a)    Mining Tax Policy Inconsistencies

    Sir, stakeholders were concerned that the mining fiscal regime has been regularly changing. Mining involves long-term planning and frequent changes in the tax regime have the potential to undermine investment and disrupt production. This has adverse effects on the economy, considering that the sector is the main foreign exchange earner at the moment and a significant employer.

    Mr Speaker, your Committee knows that Zambia is competing with other countries in the region for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in mining. It is against this background that your Committee recommends that care be taken in undertaking tax changes in the sector so as to maintain predictability and stability in the sector;

(b)     Limited Tax Collection Capacity

    Mr Speaker, some stakeholders were concerned about the inadequate capacity at the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) to collect optimal tax revenue from the mining sector. They, therefore, argued that the low levels of tax revenues from the mines are not necessarily due to applicable tax rates, but limited capacity to collect. In this regard, your Committee urges the Government to focus on enhancing the capacity of the ZRA to collect taxes as opposed to increasing the rates.

    While the ZRA is still in the process of improving its internal capacity to collect taxes from the mines, it is recommended that tax collection in the mines be augmented by outsourcing capacity from specialised agencies, both local and international, to maximise collections during the intervening period;

(c)    Tax Planning Activities

    Mr Speaker, one of the reasons the country has continued to collect low levels of tax revenue from the mining companies include tax planning practices such as transfer pricing. This can partly be attributed to the less stringent punitive measures for corporate bodies that are found wanting in this area. Your Committee, therefore, recommends that the Government puts in place more punitive measures such as severe penalties in our laws to deter such vices;

(d)     Mining Production Data

    Sir, some witnesses were concerned that various Government institutions and, indeed, mining companies have continued to report conflicting production figures. It is recommended, therefore, that strict mechanisms be put in place to ensure that correct production figures are obtained at all times, as they form the basis for computation of taxes; and

(e)     Competitiveness

    Mr Speaker, witnesses were also concerned with weak or lack of benchmarking of our mining tax regime in the region. Generally, Zambia has a comparably higher mining tax regime in the region. This can easily lead to Zambia out-pricing itself in attracting FDI in the mining sector by losing out to more competitive mining neighbouring countries.

In light of these observations, your Committee recommends that the Government reverts to the 2014 mining tax regime. This regime entails a mineral royalty rate for base metals of 6 per cent across all mines, regardless of mining methods or ore grade content. The regime further entails that corporate income tax rate be at 30 per cent and variable profit tax rate at 15 per cent.

Mr Speaker, it is important to make the Zambian mining sector operating environment globally and most importantly regionally competitive so as to grow the pie instead of focusing too much on how best to share the existing tiny pie. What should be at stake, therefore, is finding an equitable balance, on one hand, the commercial interests of the mining industry, supported by progressive tax regime and on the other, the mining industry’s enhanced contribution to the national Treasury.

Sir, I wish to conclude by thanking all the witnesses that appeared before your Committee for their valuable input. Your Committee also appreciates the services rendered by the Clerk of the National Assembly and her staff during its deliberations. Lastly, allow me to thank you, Mr Speaker, for affording your Committee the opportunity to consider the Bill.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, I want to express my disappointment pertaining to the way we handle tax issues in this country. We are all aware that when the 2015 National Budget was presented, last year, there was a lot of excitement in this House. That particular Budget and its tax proposals were overwhelmingly supported by this House. We were assured, at the time, that that was the best tax regime from which Zambia could benefit. The House agreed and passed that particular tax amendment.

Mr Speaker, barely three months after the demise of the then chief executive officer of Zambia, the late President, Mr Sata, there was a dramatic shift in the way we wanted to run the tax regime in this country. In my understanding and opinion, when this Government made that shift, I tend to think that it was telling us that it was President Sata who was wrong and he imposed that tax regime on the Government. Since he was no longer there, our colleagues across had to change it. There were no tangible reasons that were given for the change of position.

Mr Speaker, I am also aware that when election campaigns were being conducted, accusations were labelled against the United Party for National Democracy (UPND). It was said that we, in the UPND, were against that policy shift because we were supporting the investors in the mining sector on whose payroll it was assumed we were. Considering that there is another major shift, are we now saying that the Government is on the payroll of the mining houses? We gave prudent reasons for thinking that the proposals that were made by the Government, then, were not tenable and were going to kill the industry. Our friends on your right did not listen, but instead decided to make accusations.

Mr Speaker, I would appreciate it if the hon. Minister of Finance apologised for misleading us in passing that particular law. As a Member of the enlarged Committee on Estimates, I am aware that witnesses made submissions opposing that particular tax regime. All of us in that particular Committee were convinced that it was the best option that was available then. However, now, there is a major shift. For me to be convinced, there must be an admittance on the part of the Government that it was misled by officers in coming up with that tax regime. We were even given a comparative study of where that tax regime that was being introduced was obtaining.

Mr Speaker, again, the officers have produced another report that is contradicting the hon. Minister’s report during the Budget presentation in 2014. Whom are we going to trust? If the hon. Minister is not very careful, he will be made answerable for things which he is not responsible. The officers in his ministry are misleading him. I am not against the amendment, but against the inconsistency. This Government is consistently inconsistent and that is discouraging investors from investing in this country.

Mr Speaker, if we do not have competent officers in the Ministry of Finance, let the hon. Minister of Finance request for authority to employ people who are competent. We should not be made to rubber stamp decisions that are not in the interest of the Government.

Mr Speaker, I would like the hon. Minister to come out very clearly on this issue. I support the Motion, but I do not support the way we handle issues of tax.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central): Mr Speaker, the report is straight forward. The chairperson for the Committee on Estimates has given very good remarks on it. I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether he will not come back before October to tell us that the new tax is not acceptable. Are we certain that the miners and mining companies have accepted this tax regime we are using now? Do we have enough confidence in ourselves, now, that what we have done will not come back to us again?

Mr Speaker, I am asking the hon. Minister, as he comes to wind up, to give us the assurance that, this time around, we have done something that will not be referred back to us. Taxation and taxing the mines is something that is bothering all of us. Every year, since we started, we have changed how to tax the mines. We have been told that that is the main external income generating venture. Alas, we do not see the money that we talk about in foreign exchange. A lot of the income to the Ministry of Finance is generated from employees through Income Tax. I support the hon. Minister, but I think he is not getting enough support.

Mr Speaker, when he made the first taxation amendment, we all believed him, but immediately afterwards there was a total change. It is like he is the only person talking about these taxes in the Cabinet. So, hon. Minister, as you come to wind up this debate in supporting this particular taxation theme, please, assure us that we will not, again, come back to work out another tax system.

Mr Speaker, with these very few remarks, I thank you.

Mr Kapeya: Very good.

Ms Imenda (Luena): Mr Speaker, I will also be very brief. I have some concerns on certain issues. Firstly, as Zambians, we seem to embrace a stop, go policy. We do one thing this particular day and reverse it the next day. Imagine driving a car and engaging it in forward gear, move a step forward and then reverse to the point at which at you started. Are you going to complete the journey at that rate?

Lt-Gen. Rev. Shikapwasha: No!

Ms Imenda: Mr Speaker, are you going to reach where you are going? You are not going to reach. That is how Zambia has been since time immemorial. This is what we are seeing now. The tax regime was announced, like the previous debaters, such as Hon. Jack Mwiimbu, have said, we embraced and accepted the explanation by the hon. Minister of Finance when he introduced the taxes. We all supported them. However, here we are, again, getting into reverse gear. There is something else which is being proposed contrary to what was proposed earlier on.

Mr Speaker, this is not good for a country, for posterity, for development and it not good for something that is supposed to be good.

Mr Speaker, what is taxation? People just look at taxation from just one particular perspective, that it is just a way of earning revenue. However, I would like educate all of us that taxation should also be looked at in the context of income distribution. It is an income distribution tool. When you look at Zambia, who are the shareholders? It is the people of Zambia.

Now, can we all queue up at the mines which are the cash cow that we depend on or is it the goose that lays the golden egg so that we can all be given our share? We do not do it that way. This cannot be done even in relation to other activities in the country like the manufacturers and all the organisations that are supposed to bring money to the Treasury. The Treasury collects our shares on behalf of we the shareholders. That taxation is what comes to us so that during the Budget execution, that income distribution takes place so that all of us have a share of the milk that has been milked from this cash cow.

Mr Speaker, therefore, we are concerned when this cash cow is not properly managed. That is why the issue of taxation is very important. As shareholders, we want to have a share and the people that are tasked with the tool to distribute to us should do it properly. They should not give us excuses such as, “No sorry, today, we did not milk the cow because it did not go for grazing and then the next day, no sorry, this and this has happened.” We will not be satisfied with that. That is why we are saying that this taxation must be consistent.

Mr Speaker, the mover of the Motion, Hon. Hamududu, has mentioned that concern has been expressed by some stakeholders on the issue of competitiveness in the region and in the world. When I was young and a student; I remember there were three main producers of Copper in the world, Zambia, the then Zaire, now, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Chile. Sometimes, Zambia would be the number one producer, sometimes it would be Chile and other times the DRC. Now, if we are not being competitive in this industry, I do not know where we are now. I think Chile is ahead of us. Maybe, even the DRC is ahead of us. There could have been some other Copper producers which have come on board and are beating us.

Mr Speaker, this country is sitting on Copper. Is it not time we tried to manage how we get this revenue through taxation by getting the taxation regime right? My advice to my elder brother, the hon. Minister of Finance, is that; please, let us look at how we manage this resource. Let us not price ourselves out of the market because we will have nothing left to hold on to.

Mr Speaker, there has also been mention of Zambia being a high cost producer. In everything, we seem to price ourselves out. Everything seems to be so expensive in Zambia. Fuel is so expensive, and yet it is supposed to drive the wheels of industry. It is high like everything else.

Mr Speaker, as if this was not enough, we came up with the so-called minimum wage without regard to productivity. The left hand does not know what the right hand is doing. There should have been inter-ministerial consultation before the minimum wage issue was brought up. Other ministries should have come in and looked at the implications of this thing and, then, come to a common ground. It was not properly thought out. The Government just decided because it had promised the voters to increase the minimum wage without knowing the ramifications of such a thing. Some people, in the process, lost their jobs.

Sir, Zambia is becoming a high cost producer. We are pricing ourselves out of the market and, very soon, if we are not careful, we will be irrelevant as we continue sinking and sinking to be the poorest country in the world.

Mr Speaker, we need to look at the lack of productivity. Let the Government take a step. My …

Mrs Imenda became silent.

Ms Imenda: I am sorry, Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister of Labour and Social Security is staring at me.


Mr Speaker: Are you through?

Ms Imenda: No, Sir, I am not through. I wanted to say something, but I have been diverted.


Ms Imenda: He is staring at me and I am talking about productivity.

Mr Speaker: You are speaking.


Ms Imenda: The hon. Minister of Labour and Social Security is not even sitting in his seat just so that he can be staring at me.


Ms Imenda: Mr Speaker, I support the Motion.


The Minister of Finance: Mr Speaker, I want to sincerely thank the Committee on Estimates and hon. Members for supporting the Bill. I also wish to take note of the observations made in good faith by your Committee. May I take this opportunity to respond to some of the concerns raised.

Mr Speaker, under the 2015 National Budget, the tax regime for the mining sector was re-designed to replace the two-tier system of Corporate Income Tax and Mineral Royalty with the Mineral Royalty based tax, one final tax it was to become. However, during the implementation of the 2015 mining tax regime, challenges …


Mr Speaker: Order, on the left!

Mr Chikwanda: ... were encountered. These challenges were basically the externally induced shocks which led to the plummeting of commodity prices and the main challenge being the decline of copper prices on the international market to their lowest in five years.

Sir, we noted that it would be difficult to implement the 2015 Budget changes, given the fall in copper prices. Therefore, to ameliorate market anxieties in the mining sector, the Government decided to make changes to the mining tax regime. It is expected that the proposed mining taxation regime will help the sector to remain viable in the medium to long-term.

Mr Speaker, we are encouraged by your Committee’s recommendation on the need to enhance Zambia’s tax revenues capacity to collect taxes. I wish to assure the House that the Government remains committed to enhancing the capacity of the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA). To this effect, a number of modernisation reforms have been carried out and these include the following:

(a)    setting up of a mining tax unit under the large tax payer office and recruiting relevant staff such as those with knowledge of mining engineering and metallurgy;

(b)    using the electronic based inland tax and customs administration system that enables the tax payers to declare and pay taxes online;

(c)    embarking on the mineral value chain monitoring project to monitor mineral production;

(d)    installation and operation of non-intrusive scanners in selected areas to forestall illegal importations.

Mr Speaker, the ZRA is also collaborating with tax administrations from other countries to exchange information for tax purposes as well as conduct joint audits. This will enable the transfer of tax audit knowledge and skills to the officers through a real time learning by doing approach.

Mr Speaker, the Chairperson of your Committee capably stressed the need to enhance capacity at the ZRA to collect revenue. This is being done, among other things, by a very rigorous programme of mordernisation. The mordernisation programme, which has been carried over the last three years, now enables the ZRA to use information and communications technology (ICT) to improve on tax collections and this is helping a lot. The extensive use of scanners is also making it very difficult for people who cheated because the scanners can look into anything.  They can even detect a needle. This is stopping transfer pricing.

Mr Speaker, the Chairperson was right about this thing. This is why, in the 2015 tax regime, we attempted to embark on the mineral royalty route because it is the only effective way of pre-empting transfer pricing.

Mr Speaker, the reality as a result of decline in the global economy is simply that commodity prices have declined across the board. All commodity prices, especially for metals, have declined. Even precious metals like gold have taken quite a beating.

Mr Speaker, in this regard, the decline in the price of copper is astronomical. Copper prices have declined from US$7,000 per metric tonne or above to now just around US$5,300 per metric tonne. Today’s spot, Western Atlantic was about US$5,300 per metric tonne, meaning that when the markets opened on the other side of the Atlantic, the London Metal Exchange (LME) price must hover around those levels. So, you can see the deep and the reason your Government decided to redesign a few things just in order to accommodate these exigencies which were not foreseen at the time when we were making the Budget proposals for the fiscal year, 2015. Maybe, the assumptions on which we based the forecast were slightly euphoric.

Mr Speaker, the hon. Member for Monze Central made some very useful observations even when discounted for politics. There is no policy somersault. There was no change, of course, after the loss of our beloved President. The changes to the tax regime have purely been induced by the adverse circumstances in the global economy. I want to assure Hon. Mwiimbu surveillance will guard against the Government’s policy somersaulting because that does not help a country. What sells a country as an investment destination is decidedly policy predictability and consistency. Therefore, it is not in the interest of our country to change goal posts at our whims and caprices. That is not our disposition.

Mr Speaker, as for the apology, I think that there is no need to apologies because the hon. Minister of Finance did not take Parliament for a ride. When we presented the Budget, everything was done in good faith but, of course, as I said earlier, the assumptions upon which we based the estimates in terms of revenue from the mining sector have been drastically impaired by the decline in the global economy. In fact, the growth which was earlier predicted to be around 3.8 per cent has now been revised to 3.3 per cent and could even be lower by the end of the current fiscal year. Therefore, that is what re-induced the changes, Hon. Mwiimbu, not just our propensity to move goal posts.

Mr Speaker, the hon. Member for Kalomo Central wanted assurance that we will not somersault. I want to assure him that, certainly, we have an obligation, duty or responsibility to ensure that our policies are consistent if we are going to attract people to invest in Zambia. Zambia can only be a credible investment destination if people are sure of the certainty of the policies of the Government.

Mr Speaker, let me just say that I have listened ,with considerable interest, to the debate of the hon. Member for Luena, and I am sure that everything she said was in good faith.

I thank you, Sir.

Question put and agreed to and the Bill read a second time.

Committed to a committee of the Whole House.

Committee on Friday, 24th July, 2015.


The Minister of Mines, Energy, and Water Development (Mr Yaluma): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the Bill be now read a second time.

Mr Speaker, the repeal and replacement of the Mines and Minerals Development Act of 2008 has been necessitated by the need to align it with the Patriotic Front (PF) Government’s policy on mining and to address the inadequacies identified by both the mining industry and the country, relating to the optimum development of mineral resources. The principle inadequacies which this Bill seeks to redress include the following:

(a)    inadequate size and duration of prospecting licence;

(b)    restriction of mining licence areas;

(c)    too many licences for the same activity;

(d)    multiple licensing authorities;

(e)    lack of an appeal tribunal;

(f)    the Act does not provide for fast track appeal system outside the courts of law.

(g)    restriction of small-scale mining rights to Zambian citizen-owned companies has made it difficult for Zambians to access investment finance;

(h)    under the current Act, individuals are eligible for mining rights, which make it difficult for such holders to raise finance for their projects;

(i)    the current Act introduced environmental requirements that were not practical at application stage for come licences;

(j)    to alleviate the problem of inadequate human resource to monitor the industry, the Bill has provided for the introduction of honorary inspectors;

(k)    the Bill has incorporated provision for the regulation of gold trade, and the Gold Trade Act of 1947 is proposed to be repealed;

(l)    in line with the Government policy to empower Zambians to participate in the mining industry, the Bill has provided for the introduction of mineral trading permits. The trading permit allows Zambian citizens to trade in minerals;

(m)    provision for the hon. Minister to issue regulations for marketing, monitoring or production and export of gemstones; and

(n)    the Bill provides for electronic submission of application payments to allow full implementation of the computerised mining cadastre.

Mr Speaker, I, therefore, request the House to adopt the Mines and Minerals Development Bill of 2015 and to repeal the Gold Trade Act.

Mr Speaker, I withdraw the repealing of the Gold Trade Act. I would like the House to adopt and support the Mines and Minerals Development Bill of 2015.

I thank you, Sir.  

Mr Hamudulu (Siavonga): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank you for the opportunity to present the findings of your Committee on the Mines and Minerals Development Bill, National Assembly Bill No. 12 of 2015.

Mr Speaker, your Committee considered various submissions on the Mines and Minerals Development Bill referred to it on 25th June, 2015. The objects of the 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.

Mr Speaker, let me begin by stating that your Committee supports the Bill and commends the Government for bringing it to the House. It is notable that all the stakeholders who appeared before your Committee were in support of the Bill, as it is a measure which will bring about the desired regulatory framework in the mining sector.

Mr Speaker, while appreciating the need to have a new Bill to improve and ensure a co-ordinated approach in the mining sector, your Committee observes that the proposed Bill falls short of its intended purpose of holistically addressing the challenges of the mining sector and hence, the need for wider consultation.

Further, your Committee observes that the issue of mining taxation was allotted in two pieces of legislation, namely the Income Tax and Mines and Minerals Acts. This issue of mining taxation has, therefore, been considered by the Committee on Estimates and the Committee on Economic Affairs, Energy and Labour at the same time. Your Committee, therefore, recommends that to avoid fragmentation of efforts, mining taxation should be an integral component of the Fiscal Legislation. Further, your Committee recommends that all matters relating to taxation in the mining sector must be dealt with under the relevant Bill by the ministry responsible for finance.

Mr Speaker, your Committee welcomes the idea of consolidating mining licences in two categories and streamlining the multiple licensing agents. Your Committee also commends the expansion of the composition of the Licensing Committee as this will enhance transparency. However, your Committee urges the Government to explore the possibility of setting up a licensing authority to deal with all issues relating to mining licensing.
Mr Speaker, your Committee further observes that the Government, at the moment, is grappling with challenges of capacity in taxation and revenue collection from the mining sector. Your Committee, therefore, recommends that to increase capacity in this area, the Government should seek assistance from external experts or institutions in order to improve tax administration and revenue collection.

Mr Speaker, your Committee also observes that the holder of a mining licence shall be required to pay mineral royalty at the rate of 9 per cent for open-cast mining operations and 6 per cent for underground mining operations. Your Committee, however, argues that Mineral Royalty Tax should be set at an optimal level in order to compare with other countries in the region. Your Committee, therefore, recommends that as the Government undertakes a comprehensive review of the taxation in the mining sector, the pre-2015 mining tax regime, which pegged mineral royalty at 6 per cent for all mining operations, should be re-instated.

Sir, may I also take this opportunity to draw the attention of the hon. Minister and the House to the proposed amendments which are set out in your Committee’s report. Your Committee strongly recommends that all amendments that are set out therein should be effected on the Floor of the House because without effecting those amendments, the Bill would be rendered inadequate to meet its set out objects.

Mr Speaker, I wish to conclude by ...

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

Mr Hamudulu: Mr Speaker, when Business was suspended, I was about to conclude. I wish to do so by thanking all the witnesses that appeared before your Committee for their valuable input in the work of your Committee. I also wish to thank you, Sir, for affording your Committee an opportunity to consider the Bill.

Finally, your Committee also appreciates the services rendered by the Office of the Clerk of the National Assembly throughout its deliberations.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mutati (Lunte): Mr Speaker, may I start by saying that I am a Member of the Committee on Economic Affairs, Energy and Labour and I just want to amplify a number of aspects on the Bill.

Mr Speaker, in the thirteen inadequacies that were enumerated by the hon. Minister, a key inadequacy which was not referred to was the amendment of the Mineral Royalty Tax, which is contained in the Bill, and which I think is significant.

Mr Speaker, the Committee was conscious of the fact that the Government must secure a fair share of taxes and at the same time put in place a tax system that will nurture and grow the mining sector as a key contributor to diversification.

Mr Speaker, in order to achieve this, it is important that we follow the basic principles of taxation in the design and implementation of a durable tax system. Some of these principles are simplicity, consistency, predictability and competitiveness.


Mr Speaker: Order, on the right! There are too many conversations going on.

Continue, hon. Member.

Mr Mutati: Mr Speaker, with regards to simplicity, the Bill introduces the Mineral Royalties Tax. It is a split system where the underground mining activities are charged at 6 per cent and open cast are charged at 9 per cent. Basically, the Bill follows the mining method of transactions.

Sir, however, this method does not take into account the peculiar challenges faced by open cast and underground mining, in particular, the grade of the mineral ore and the costs associated with metallurgy. More importantly, any mining method would ordinarily mix materials from various sources, open cast and underground included, in order to come up with a final product. At what rate do you charge the Mineral Royalty Tax? Is it at 6 per cent or 9 per cent? It implants a complication in the tax system. This is a complication which is the basis of our bemoaning the lack of capacity for us to administer taxation. It is an unnecessary complication.

Mr Speaker, the principle of tax is simplicity. There is no need to introduce the complication of a two tier system in coming up with the Mineral Royalty Tax. That is why your Committee said that the tax system must be mineral based and not mining method based. That way we shall avoid the complication of giving an opportunity to those who have the ability for creative accounting to account properly. Let us follow the basic principle of taxation which is simplicity.

Sir, the second principle is predictability. We need to begin to find a cure for the allergy of consistency. This allergy of consistency has cost us in terms of investment and output. We projected that copper production would reach 1 million tonnes in 2015, but we will probably only produce 700,000 tonnes. What makes this more crucial is when you compare other copper producing countries such as the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) which, in 2003, was producing less than 16,000 tonnes of copper when Zambia was producing 250,000 tonnes of copper. Today, the DRC, in 2015, will produce 1 million tonnes of copper while Zambia will produce hardly 700,000 tonnes. This difference is caused by consistency.

Mr Speaker, from 2003, the mining tax code that was introduced in the DRC has remained unchanged and as a consequence, it has motivated investment and production. I can also give an example of Chile. Zambia and Chile were producing copper at about the same pace but, this year, Chile will produce 5 million metric tonnes of copper. We must begin to ask ourselves why we should pay the price. The answer is that we are associated with a lot of changes and reversals.

Sir, in the last three years we have had Statutory Instrument (SI) 33, dealing with foreign exchange, reversed, we grappled with Value Added Tax (VAT) refunds and we have had various changes with the Mineral Royalty Tax. This is costing us in terms of production. It is important that we change our deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) to one of being consistent.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mutati: Mr Speaker, the third principle of tax is competitiveness. We are not the only country that mines copper and taxation is a key operating cost in mining. Any decision to invest or expand is impact-driven by taxation. Therefore, we need a tax regime that is competitive. Your Committee, on Page 5, has given a table of the Mineral Royalty Tax of our neighbours as a basis of benchmarking and comparing to see where Zambia stands. Botswana’s Mineral Royalty Tax is at 3 per cent, the DRC’s is at 2 per cent, Ghana’s is at 5 per cent, Kenya’s is at 8 per cent, Namibia’s is at 3 per cent while Zambia’s was at 20 per cent prior to the change. This shows where we stand on the ladder of competitiveness. We want the hon. Minister to know that taxation has consequences, particularly if it is not competitive.

Sir, the things that you are doing in the energy sector with urgency should be done in the mining sector with the same level of enthusiasm for us to overtake the DRC because it has always historically been behind us. There is no way the DRC can produce 1 million tonnes of copper while Zambia’s graph is going down. Notwithstanding the issues in the DRC, the projection is exponential. You must find it difficult to accept that sort of scenario.

Sir, in saying so, you must not be associated with the responsibility that you are re-energising the stimulus that is now driving the addiction to debt. For as long as we are not able to ramp up our production, the only option we will have is debt.

Mr Speaker, only yesterday, we heard the hon. Minister say that only six of the forty parastatal companies are making a profit. In simple terms, this means that about 50 per cent of our Budget deficit is attributable to the parastatals that are making losses.

Mr Speaker, the first consequence is that unless you hold the sector and ramp up production, your exchange rate is going to continue to weaken. Your trade deficit is going to grow exponentially. As your contribution to the governance of this country, you are going to erode the reserves and I do not think you will want to take that responsibility. These are the consequences of inconsistency. You need to reverse this inconsistency and say, “this is the last time we will be associated with inconsistency in the mining sector.”

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mutati: Sir, then, we will address this issue because if we had volume, we would be able to deal with the exchange rate and trade deficit. If we had volume, we would be able to inject the diversification that we talk about. The easy option is to borrow US$ 2 billion more. Instead of dealing with the productive capacity, we are taking the easy route out. We are now having more debt. Is that the way you will be remembered as having worked in the Ministry of Mines, Energy and Water Development? This ministry is one of the biggest engines of this country. Now, you have a conspiracy of variables in your ministry. On one side, you are grappling with the power deficit and on the other side, you are grappling with reduced copper production. You should, at least, cure one of them.

Mr Mbewe: Both!

Mr Mutati: Mr Speaker, if not both, at least, at the very minimum, one of them. Time is running out because you have to demonstrate that you walked through those corridors and you did not only leave dust, but substance. That is what is crucial.

Mr Speaker, reflection does not cure inadequacy in capacity, in terms of tax administration and collection. Only investment cures it. No matter how much you renew and pass amendments, you will not cure the lack of capacity. When your officials visited Chile, they learnt of the formular that when you create an institution for the purpose of verifying production and transfer pricing, then, what you get from the mines will minimise leakages. We saw that that particular section in the Act is absent. I, therefore, want to urge you that the visit to Chile should not just be in vain. Let Chile be an addition to the value of how things must be done correctly ...

Hon.MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mutati: ... and not be a waste of tax payers’ money. The officials told us that there is a solution and, now, they are bringing amendments which are merely consolidating licences. Consolidation of licences, as important as it is, does not assist in revenue collection. What is your biggest problem? So, you have an opportunity to bring an amendment arising from the Chile visit?

Mr Speaker, the second reflection is that in our appendix, we have given a number of amendments. Hon. Minister, it is probably the first Bill that I have been associated with which has amended every clause. It means that the consultative depth and direction of the Bill must begin to worry you, hon. Minister. Those people were not doing a correct job. You cannot have a Bill under which every clause is amended and the proposition is coming from your own officers. Why did they not do it in the first place? Is that how we are going to manage this country?

Mr Speaker, these are the worrying issues. They even point fingers at each other, “we told them, but they did not listen.” All I am saying is that as you walk in those corridors, let your officials not mislead you. Other hon. Ministers are being misled because they introduced other things which they reversed, but you should be the first one to say, no to this process. I know you are capable of doing it. Capability is insufficient if it is not matched with implementation of the things that you know must be done. Why are we leaving the things that must be done on the shelves and bringing the whole multitude of superficial light amendments all in the name of discharge of appointment? You should not think that if you do not make amendments to any Bill, then, you will be judged as not having performed. It is better to do a proper job than to amend for the sake of it.  

Mr Speaker, again, I want to talk about the issue of the DNA. You should re-inject a different DNA and call it consistency. If only you can just have a consistent DNA, regardless of what else you do, that will help to build Zambia and the sector. Zambia has got hope.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Let me give chance to other members other than the Committee Members to also debate this item.

Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, I thank you ...

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

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, thank you for allowing me to raise this point of order. This morning, at about 0645 hours, Radio Phoenix ran a phone-in programme through which it informed the public we passed a Motion, in this House, with no opposition to increase our salaries. This debate was allowed to go on and people were vicious that we passed a Motion which was moved by the hon. Member for Lubansenshi. I, then, realised that they were referring to the Report of the Parliamentary Reforms and Modernisation Committee. I phoned Radio Phoenix and told them that what they were saying was wrong. I asked them to ring the Parliamentary Public Relations so that they get the correct information. I have just checked and they have not done so. We have journalists coming to this House and, I think, the Radio Phoenix journalists do come as well. I am wondering whether they are in order to begin misleading the public by giving them information that is not correct. Are they really in order to come and get wrong information from this House to misinform the public? Now, every hon. Member is being told that their salaries have been increased.

Mr Speaker, I need your serious ruling over this matter before the people are misled further.

Mr Speaker: My ruling is that I, obviously, need to study this point of order. It is a very important point of order. I did not wake up that early to listen to the radio.


Mr Speaker: So, I need to catch up with you and I will render my ruling in due course.

The hon. Member for Bweengwa may continue.

Mr Hamududu: Mr Speaker, firstly, I want to thank the Committee on Economic Affairs, Energy and Labour for this well-thought out report. I also want to thank the Chairperson and indeed, Hon. Mutati, who has actually exemplified this report very clearly.

Sir, I want to start with the issue of differentiated royalties that Hon. Mutati has mentioned, but from a different angle. The differentiated royalty of 9 per cent for open cast mines and 6 per cent for underground mines is on a skilled basis. It is based only on one perimeter which is a type of mine, but there are many parameters that obtain in mining. One of it, for example, is the ore grade content. There could be an open cast mine whose costs are higher than an underground mine because of the different ore grade content. Therefore, if this differentiated Mineral Royalty Tax is just based on the method of mining, then, we have a skilled basis which is not fair for the mining companies.

Mr Speaker, that is why in most of the countries, as explained by your Committee and Hon. Mutati, they basically have a single royalty. Therefore, we appeal to the hon. Minister to have the best practice mode and a single royalty for mining. So, if it is 6 per cent, let it apply for open cast and underground mines. Otherwise, you are going to penalise open cast mines which have low grade content like Lumwana Copper Mines. So, there is a lot of rabble to get a little copper. Let us be conclusive in crafting the royalty because the differentiated approach cannot hold water. I hope you will take that into account because that is the practice around. Otherwise, you might close the open cast mines.

Sir, this country, at Independence up to around 1973, was a middle income country and its economy depended on copper mining. Now, because we tampered with the copper mining in this country, based on populist and baseless mining approaches, we are where we are today. This country, today, should have been a first world country. As explained by the Chilean data, in 1973, we were at par with Chile, producing copper at around 700,000 tonnes. Now Chile is at over 5 million. Imagine if we were at that level of production. So, we have actually moved forward and backward. In 1973, we used populist approaches and nationalised everything and brought the mining operations in this country to a halt. Fortunately, the regime gave attractive incentives later on during the Chiluba era into the Mwanawasa and Banda eras and the country earned foreign exchange.

Mr Speaker, the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in this country is, by and large, driven by the FDI in mining. Once you tinker with the environment in a negative way in the mining sector, the FDI begins to slow down and now again we have nose-dived. So, we are a country that it is like a rollercoaster because we move forward and backward and at the end of the day, we are actually just going backwards.

Mr Livune: Oh! Oh!

Mr Hamududu: Sir, it is important to understand that the economy, at the moment, is dependent, by and large, on mining in terms of foreign exchange earnings. When copper mining tones down, there are many consequences. The economy begins to slow down, foreign exchange is not earned and there are other resultant effects. Currently, the oil prices are reasonably low, but because of the exchange rate in this country, fuel is expensive. There are now consequences on industries, but we must know what triggers that. What triggers that is the negative tampering of the mining environment. So, we do not need populism in this area. Let us use evidence and also compare the performance of our country to that of other countries.

Mr Speaker, most of the mining companies in this country have one leg in Zambia and another leg in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). So, these companies have just disinvested in Zambia and invested in the DRC. They are the same companies and they are linked. So, we have lost to a neighbour and the reason is simple. Our tax regime must be comparative and based on data and not on populism because we injure the same people we claim to please. We need to go to the basics and if possible, we can actually tone down this mineral royalty even to a lower rate, looking at the effects that these increased royalties have impacted on our economy, so that we can gain the confidence even beyond our neighbours.

Sir, our country is in a bad situation because our economy, by and large, has not diversified from 1964. If we look at our neighbouring countries that mine copper, for instance, Namibia, it is by and large diversified and they have a very vibrant fishing sector that earns them a lot of foreign exchange. They also have a very vibrant livestock sector which has access to the European market and we do not have that here. In addition, they have a vibrant tourism sector. If you want to book for a room at Walvis Bay or Swakopmund, you need to do it in advance. Most people visit that area in December and the moment they leave, they book for the next year. If you drive to Swakopmund or Walvis Bay, in December, and you did not book in advance, you will literally just pitch your tent in the sand dunes. There will be no accommodation because they have a vibrant tourism sector. That is why they have a 3 per cent royalty and are happy with that. In this country, we think that our economy is not growing because the rate is lower, and yet our economy is hanging on one thread. You touch it, you fall on the ground. Botswana is another country which has vibrant tourism and livestock sectors apart from the mining sector. So, we must understand our situation that until we diversify our economy, we have very little options. Let us be very careful with our approach and know our situation which is very unique.

Mr Speaker, beyond that, mining has other linked benefits that come to our country apart from the taxes that the mining companies pay. There are jobs that are created and also other resultant taxes. If, for example, the mining operations on the Copperbelt come down significantly, the Value Added Tax (VAT) will be low because the purchases are driven by the employees so you will see businesses generally toning down. The Pay as You Earn tax (PAYE) from workers will also disappear because workers will be laid off. So, we must look at the mining taxation from a holistic perspective. There are also taxes paid through the forward and backward linkages by the suppliers. If there is no mining, those suppliers will not have business. So, let us look at mining taxation in the broader context otherwise, we will destroy many attendant facets to mining. We know very well that during the brief economic meltdown on the Copperbelt, jobs were lost. The VAT and PAYE went down because the trigger is mining. So, do not kill the enabler. Mining, at the moment, is an enabler. Our failure to diversify our economy must not be blamed on low tax rates in the mines. What is stopping us from diversifying as a country?


Mr Speaker: Order! There are too many conversations. Please, if you are pressed for this conversation, the doors are open. I can see clusters of conversations.

Continue, hon. Member for Bweengwa.

Mr Hamududu: There is nothing whatsoever that is stopping us from diversification. Our problem is our budgetary architecture. Our Budget does not speak to what we aspire to be. Our Budget mostly has personal emoluments and how can we diversify like that? If you go to the car parks in the Government departments in this country, you will find the most expensive cars there as compared to Botswana and Namibia.

There are no priorities, but instead, our priorities are upside down. The lack of diversification must not be blamed on the mines because this is our problem. We need to put the money where our months are. If it is in agriculture or tourism, let us begin to put enough money in these sectors and improve the infrastructure and clean up our towns. Who can come here and pitch a tent in these dirty towns? We need to clean them up. All of us in here travel, but I do not know whether we do some shopping when we go out. Go to Windhoek, it is a clean city and so the small cities around. Perhaps, this could be the reason tourists go there.

Sir, I can tell you that, in December, Zambians drive to Namibia, but you will not see anyone driving in the opposite direction. If you see any vehicle coming here, they are just passing through to export their goods in the DRC. So, my emphasis is that let us deliberately diversify because we have the money in the Budget. What is needed is to put our priorities right. Secondly, let us not kill this giant sector on which, at the moment, the economy still leans. We have had enough lessons to learn from the 1973 Functional Image Analysis Software Computational (FIASCO) of populism and wanting to Zambianise. What is Zambian about business? Business is international.

Mr Speaker, again, this Government has come up with populism and because of that, we have gone backwards. Your colleagues had actually left this country at the stage of take off. If you read on the internet, you would find that Zambia was actually taking off by 2011, but we have been drawn backwards and have now plummeted because of the Government’s populist and baseless policies, especially as regard the way it crafts taxes. I would like to encourage my colleagues in the Government to carry out some research because there is enough data and evidence which they can fall on. Let us begin to do something. Otherwise, all of us are hurt because the kwacha is going mad. At the rate that we are going, the kwacha might go beyond K10 against the United States Dollar. I can see it reaching that rate unless you do something drastic to arrest the situation. What we are saying is that this Government should act quickly to reverse this punitive mining tax regime. It is not that we are bought by anybody, it is because we understand and we have the data.

Sir, I would like to support the report of your Committee and I hope that the hon. Minister will hear us when we talk of a single Mineral Royalty Tax on all mines and move away from the differentiated one. Secondly, he should also look at the comparative data and evidence. There must be proper basis and evidence from which these figures must be brought to the House.

Mr Speaker, it is interesting that the civil servants are not being consulted.  Some of our friends who have left the Civil Service are telling us a different story. Do not impose your views on the technocrats. If they mislead you, show them the way by firing them. Unfortunately, some politicians are making decisions on some of these rates even when they do not have enough information which is supposed to be based on data, formula and comparativeness. It is easy to have access to this data. This information is not even difficult to find because you can just go on the internet and type mineral royalties in Africa, it will show you the information. So, what is the basis for 6 or 9 per cent? If you compare the Corporate Tax with other countries like Botswana, you will find that that country is at 22 per cent. Therefore, their taxes are lower. Please, use the available evidence and comparisons.

Mr Speaker, with these words, I hope the hon. Minister will take heed of your Committee’s submission.

 I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development (Mr Yaluma): Mr Speaker, indeed, a lot of things have been said as regards the Bill on the Table of the House right now.

First of all, I would like to thank the House for supporting the Bill and also taking full cognisance of their submissions as regards the hot issues in this Bill, which has not been given full consideration.

Mr Speaker, as regards Hon. Mutati’s contribution, I would like to thank him for being open. I do not want to mince a word. I would like to assure you that I will not leave dust behind, but rather meat as I walk through this.

Sir, indeed, I did not highlight the amendment of the Mineral Royalty Tax in my submission when I opened up the debate. I know that it is very crucial, as already highlighted in the document, and its omission was a slip on my part. It is crucial that it is looked at critically.

Mr Speaker, like Hon. Mutati mentioned in his debate on the factors that are deterring production in the mining sector, indeed, creditability, simplicity and consistency are the core factors we need to have. Nobody will come into this country in search of investment when we cannot give them a guarantee, but instead just project their performance for the next five, six or ten years. Their concern will be that, tomorrow, we may turn around and give them a different story altogether which we will hinder the planning activities within their industry.

Sir, yes, as a Government, we need to ensure that we provide that consistency in the way we handle these taxes. I, therefore, conquer with you and I will ensure that I will not be part and parcel or be associated with this inconsistent team if at all there is any. I will do the best I can to ensure that we move forward and in the right direction. I fully conquer with your sentiments.

Mr Speaker, as Hon. Hamududu mentioned, it is true that, in 1973, Zambia was on a par with Chile and I think that at one time, we even beat it to the first slot but, again, we came down to the production range of about 750,000. I do agree that, maybe, nationalisation, as you have highlighted, contributed to the slow investment in the private sector because that was weeded away with our policies. Indeed, we need to look at this very seriously. It does not necessarily mean that we should hike the taxes, but what matters is the way we are going to do business and the policies that we are going to put in place which are going to stimulate the investment to flow into our country. Yes, I do conquer with you, Hon. Hamududu.

Sir, I want to assure the Chairperson of your Committee that we have taken a close look at whatever has been documented in the report and we strongly feel that there is a need to review a number of the issues, as have been highlighted.

Mr Speaker, growing and establishing a mining authority, like Chile, is something that can be done, but we need to consult with the stakeholders to hear their views as we decide to act upon it. Overall, I would like to say that we really thank all of you who have debated on this Bill like Hon. Hamudulu, the Chairperson, Hon. Mutati as well as Hon. Hamududu. I would like to thank you for your comments and thank you for supporting the Bill.

 I thank you, Sir.

Question put and agreed to and the Bill read a second time.

Committed to a committee of the Whole House.

Committee on Thursday, 30th July, 2015.

THE GOLD TRADE (Repeal) BILL, 2015

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the Bill be now read a second time.

Sir, this is a Bill to repeal the Gold Trade Act and provide for matters connected with or incidental to the foregoing. This is as a result of the new Mining and Minerals Development Act which has been tabled here.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamudulu (Siavonga): Mr Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity to debate the Gold Trade (Repeal) Bill, National Assembly Bill No. 13 of 2015, which is before the House.

Sir, your Committee on Economic Affairs, Energy and Labour was tasked, by this august House, to scrutinise the Bill in detail. Allow me to inform this august House that the Gold Trade Act Cap. 396 of the Laws of Zambia was enacted in 1912 to regulate and control dealings in gold. The provisions in this Act are outdated and ineffective despite the piecemeal amendments that have been made to the Act, over the years, in order to improve trade in gold.

Mr Speaker, the Act was identified under the Business Reform Programme as one of the pieces of legislation to be repealed. The aim of the Bill is to facilitate all dealings in gold to be provided for in the Mines and Minerals Development Act. The repeal of the Gold Trade Act is necessary in order to update and simplify the regulation of gold in the country as the current provisions are cumbersome and unnecessarily bureaucratic. The repeal will, in addition, avoid duplicity in dealings in gold.

Sir, your Committee supports the Bill and commends the Government for bringing it to the House. Stakeholders who appeared before your Committee were in support of the Bill and submitted that the decision to repeal the Act was long-overdue. However, in supporting the Bill, some stakeholders expressed the view that appropriate amendments should be made to the Mines and Minerals Development Act or regulations which could take the form of a Statutory Instrument (SI) to authorise the issuance of permits by the Director of Mines to persons that merely trade in gold, but do not hold any mining right. They also raised concern over some inconsistencies in Clause 3 (2) of the Bill. They noted that the clause stipulates that a holder of a licence or permit issued under the Gold Trade Act should, within six months of the commencement of the Repeal Act, apply to the Director of Mines for a licence. The stakeholders felt that the words ‘permit’ or ‘licence’ be inserted in the appropriate places to address this inconsistency in the clause.

Mr Speaker, your Committee is in agreement with the stakeholders that the Gold Trade Act Cap. 396 of the Laws of Zambia has lost its relevance because of the passage of time and the changing dynamics in the mining sector. Therefore, subject to the above, your Committee urges this august House to pass the Bill.

Sir, lastly, on behalf of your Committee, I wish to thank you and the Clerk of the National Assembly for the guidance and administrative support rendered during your Committee’s deliberations. Further, I thank all the stakeholders who made submissions on the Bill to your Committee.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, I would like to thank everyone who has supported the repealing of the Gold Trade Act of 1947. This will help us stop the illegal trade of gold. Most gold traders obtained permits retrospectively. So, it being incorporated into the main Act will pave way for legal mining and ownership of licences for gold.

I thank you, Sir.

Question put and agreed to.




Clauses 1, 2, 3 and 4 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

 NEW CLAUSE 5 – (Amendment of section 53)

The Minister of Labour and Social Security (Mr Shamenda): Mr Chairperson, I beg to move the insertion of a new Clause 5 on page 4, immediately after line 16, as follows:

“Amendment    5.    Section fifty-three of the principal Act is amended in subsection of                  of section 53        (2) by the –
(a)    deletion of the word “and” at the end f paragraph (e);
(b)    deletion of the full stop in paragraph (f) and the substitution  therefor of a semi-colon and the word “and”; and
(c)    insertion, after paragraph (f) of the following new paragraph:
(g) arrangements to ensure the protection of accrued pension
Cap. 1                rights as provided for in the Constitution.”

Question put and agreed to.

New Clause 5 accordingly ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Title agreed to.


Clauses 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

NEW CLAUSE 6 – (Amendment of section 41)

The Minister of Local Government and Housing (Dr Phiri): Mr Chairperson, I beg to move the insertion of a new Clause 6 on page 4, immediately after line 33, as follows:

“Amendment    6.    Section forty-one of the principal Act is amended by the –
of section 41    (a)    insertion, immediately after paragraph (g), of the following new paragraph:
(h)    providing for arrangements to ensure the protection
Cap. 1    of accrued pension rights as provided for in the Constitution; and; and
                (b)    renumbering of paragraph (h) as paragraph (i).”
Question put and agreed to.

New Clause 6 accordingly ordered to stand part of the Bill.

CLAUSE 6 – (General amendment)

Dr Phiri: Mr Speaker, I beg to move an amendment in Clause 6, on page 4, in line 34 by the renumbering of Clause 6 as Clause 7.

Amendment agreed to. Clause amended accordingly.

Clause 6, as amended, 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 with amendments:

The National Pension Scheme (Amendment) Bill, 2015

Report Stage on Wednesday, 29th July, 2015.

The Local Authorities Superannuation Fund (Amendment) Bill, 2015

Report Stage on Friday, 24th July, 2015.




The Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication, acting Leader of Government Business in the House and Chief Whip (Mr Mukanga): Sir, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.


The House adjourned at 1731 hours until 0900 hours on Friday, 24th July, 2015.