Debates - Thursday, 15th October, 2015

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Thursday, 15th October, 2015

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR DEPUTY SPEAKER in the Chair]






The Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Kampyongo): Mr Speaker, thank you for affording me the opportunity to update this august House on the steps taken by my ministry in addressing the illegal land allocations that have rocked some of our local authorities, namely, the Livingstone City Council, Chipata Municipal Council and the Kitwe City Council, to mention just a few.

Sir, on 10th September, 2015, my ministry held a press briefing to emphasise the importance of the Administrative Circular No. 1 of 1985 issued by the Ministry of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection, which lays down the general policy guidelines and procedures that all city, municipal and district councils are expected to follow in the administration and allocation of land. To reinforce that circular, my ministry further communicated to all councils a step-by-step procedure for them to follow when allocating land to members of the public, with emphasis on advertising to the public and composition of the interviewing committee. The interviewing committee must include, among other members, officers from the investigative wings of the Government, namely, the police, Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) and the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC). This requirement is meant to promote transparency land allocation in the councils.

Sir, allow me to request members of the public to report to the police anyone masquerading to have authority to issue land without authenticating, and to state that my ministry remains grateful to our hon. Mayors, chairpersons and councillors nationwide for the sacrifices and hard work they have put into their civic assignments since they were elected to their respective offices in 2011, especially those who have distinguished themselves as civic leaders of integrity and honour in the face of the many challenges facing our councils. Unfortunately, the good work of the majority of our dedicated councillors and council management has been dented by a few bad elements who involve themselves in illegal land allocation. The land allocation scam at the Livingstone City Council is a case in point while the illegal land allocations in the road reserves in Chipata and Lusaka continue to damage the image of our local authorities. Therefore, I want to warn that no erring council will be spared. All cases will be reported to the ACC for investigation and possible prosecution.

Sir, my ministry has received a report from the Council Ad Hoc Committee that was set up to investigate the land allocation scam at the Livingstone City Council. I, therefore, wish to update this august House as follows:

(a)    following the revelations in the Council Ad hoc Committee’s report, the Local Government Service Commission (LGSC) reverted the then Acting Town Clerk to his substantive position of Director of Public Health, pending detailed investigations by the ACC and further action. The LGSC also appointed an Acting Town Clerk to ensure smooth operations at the council continue;

(b)    the council has suspended the Mayor of Livingstone and the other councillors involved in the land scam for six months pending investigations by the ACC; and

(c)    my ministry has suspended the holding of elections for the position of mayor until after the results of the investigations by the ACC have been known to avoid bringing the council into further disrepute.

Mr Speaker, the fight against illegal allocations of land by councils cannot be won by my ministry alone. The country can only rid of this cancer if all of us worked together and reported violators of the law to the relevant authorities. In this regard, I call upon our hon. Councillors to be vigilant and protect the integrity of their councils, and desist from betraying the interests of our people, whose votes made them civic leaders. Instead, they should report all cases of illegal land allocations to the ACC, and petition their mayors and council chairpersons over illegal land transactions. I also call on members of the public to be vigilant and report all cases of illegal land allocations to the Office of the District Commissioner (DC), Provincial Minister, the hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing or the ACC. Further, there is an inter-ministerial committee that deals with illegal land allocation, whose desk remains open at the Ministry of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Customer Care Service Centre. Hon. Members of Parliament should also come on board and help us fight this scourge by reporting all cases of illegal land transactions. 

Mr Speaker, the Patriotic Front (PF) Government, through the able leadership of his His Excellency the President, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, attaches great importance to ensuring that our people are represented in their respective councils at all times, and that laid-down procedures on administration and allocation of land are followed by local authorities.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chishimba: Ema Ministers, aba!

Mr Deputy Speaker: Hon. Members are now free to ask questions on points of clarification on the statement made by the hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing.

Mr Konga (Chavuma): Mr Speaker, I am grateful to the hon. Minister for that very informative statement. 

Sir, some of the people involved in land scams are very high-profile people who, when reported to the police, Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) or Town Clerk, are protected by the prosecuting agencies. We have been reporting such matters to the Town Clerk, but he protects the culprits. So, in Lusaka, for instance, who can we report such matters to?

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I have already assured the House that there will be no sacred cows in our dealing with people who ignore our land law, as everyone is equal before the law. The reason the Inter-ministerial Taskforce on Illegal Land Allocation and Acquisition was created is for the three ministries that make up its membership to be able to collectively deal with illegalities that certain principal officers would fail to deal with. To that effect, I am happy to announce that the taskforce, which is currently chaired by Hon. Col. Panji Kaunda, who took over from me at the Ministry of Home Affairs, has now received funds to start operations, including demolitions. So, no illegal land developer will be spared. I assure this august House and Zambians that we will bring back sanity and integrity in the councils.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chishimba (Kamfinsa): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister’s statement has come at the right time and we hope to see practical steps taken to address the problem. 

Sir, the Kitwe City Council, in particular, Kitwe District, has sent numerous reports to the hon. Minister’s office concerning illegal land allocations. When will officers from the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), Zambia Police Force and his ministry move in to ensure that the perpetrators of illegal land allocations in Kitwe face the law?

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, Kitwe is one of the three city councils I mentioned in my statement as being under ACC investigations. We are currently just waiting for the report. So, I assure the hon. Member that the culprits will be prosecuted. If the culprits are council officers, they will not only be suspended, but also prosecuted. We want them to understand that we mean business.

Mr Speaker, it is saddening that the acquisition of land is now more of a preserve for the haves. Things should not be like that because civic centres and local authorities are meant to serve all citizens regardless of their status in the community.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Sing’ombe (Dundumwezi): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister was hon. Deputy Minister of Home Affairs a few months ago and I am sure that people reported cases of illegal land allocation to him, but he failed to take any action. What makes him different now?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, it seems my colleague has not been following current affairs. It is surprising for him to say that I failed when I have been appointed to a higher office.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kampyongo: Failures are certainly not rewarded with promotion.


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, my record on issues of land illegalities is very well known. The issues that we have been able to deal with even in Lusaka are there for everybody to see. I have even been able to deal with cadres who claim to be members of my party. That is how pragmatic I can be, and it will be the same. I am happy that my elder brother, Hon. Col. Panji Kaunda, who has picked up from me as chairperson of that taskforce, is equally equal to the task. So, there is no failing. We will deal with land illegalities everywhere just as we are doing in Livingstone.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mutale (Kwacha): Mr Speaker, in Kitwe, we are constructing the Mufuchani Bridge to open up New Kitwe. Is the hon. Minister aware that some people have invaded that area and illegally allocated themselves plots? If he is aware, what immediate action will he take to address the situation?

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I want to warn all those who have taken up that land that we have received funds for the taskforce. We do not want them to be caught up in a demolition exercise. Their money will be wasted if they invest in illegal plots. Those developing land with no legal documentation should just abandon the projects. Otherwise, they will end up losing their money, and that is not good. We do not take pleasure in demolishing people’s structures because they are usually developed using their meagre, but hard-earned resources.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Belemu (Mbabala): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister said that he issued guidelines to councils regarding land allocation among which was a guideline on the composition of the panel to interview people wishing to acquire land. Seeing as that function is given to the councils and the hon. Minister has asked for the inclusion of officers from State investigative agencies on the panels, does that not amount to introducing councillors using the back door? Councils are constituted according to what is provided for in the Local Government Act.

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member knows that the procedure for interviewing land applicants is very clear. It does not involve the whole council. Additionally, the people from other institutions will not participate in interviews, but rather just observe the process to ensure that there is adherence to the correct procedure and that there is no favouritism in the way interviews are handled. The same thing is done at the Ministry of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection. So, there is no breach of any law. Things will be done in line with the procedures as they have been laid down.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Namulambe (Mpongwe): Mr Speaker, my question is also on the inclusion of the security wings as observers on the interviewing committees. Supposing it is discovered that the security officials and councillors had connived to give land illegally, will the implication of the security officers in the case not compromise the investigations? How will the ministry deal with such issues? 

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, like I have said, the security officers will participate in an observer capacity. For example, when the panel is sitting, there are a number of issues for which it looks out in the applicant. Some of the attributes are stability, financial capacity and capacity to develop the particular piece of land. 

Sir, there are times when people are greedy and want to connive. For example, one applicant might end up with four plots or more by using proxy agents to take advantage of the system. When such things happen, the security officers will be able to tell from the way the interviews are conducted, vis-à-vis the way the questions are asked, the information sought by the panel and the responses of the interviewees. So, it is necessary that we have security officers as observers of the interviewing process because their presence might help in discouraging officials from proceeding with their hidden agenda and encourage them to serve the people diligently.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mufalali (Senanga): Mr Speaker, according to the rules of natural justice, the Town Clerk for Livingstone should have maintained his position until the investigation was concluded. Why did the Local Government Service Commission (LGSC) remove him from his position and appoint another Town Clerk? In fact, the one who has been appointed used to be Town Clerk and is under investigation as Director of Health. 

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I agree with the hon. Minister’s, …

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kampyongo: … pardon me, hon. Member’s concern. However, the ad hoc committee followed the Local Government Act No. 281, which clearly spells out procedures to follow when a situation like that arises. The councillors received petitions from the residents of Livingstone who suspected that some illegality had been committed, especially when it became apparent that the demarcated plots had taken over the road reserves. That is how the concerned councillors convened and decided to have the matter investigated. According to the laid-down procedures, they constituted an ad hoc committee, which accorded an opportunity to all those who were suspected, including the Mayor, to exculpate themselves. Then, when it became apparent that the officers had engaged in the illegalities, a decision was made by the ad hoc committee to suspend them. The decision was further approved by the council by a two-thirds majority vote, as recommended in the Act. 

Sir, as for the principal officer who was acting, that matter was not under the jurisdiction of the council, but the LGSC, which deemed it fit to relegate the Town Clerk back to his substantive position because, after all, he was not the substantive Town Clerk, but just an acting one. The step was taken to ensure that the investigations would not be derailed. After the investigations have been concluded, it will be decided what action should follow and the decision will be made known to this House through my ministry.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mbewe (Chadiza): Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister for the statement he gave. 

Sir, the hon. Minister is aware that many people have been killed over their land. A recent example is that of Hon. Chellah, may his soul rest in peace. Does he have any record of how many land grabbers have been convicted? Additionally, does he have any plans to present a Bill to this House to stiffen the law against land grabbing by, for example, providing for sentencing of culprits to death by hanging?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, yes, a record of people who have been prosecuted should be there, ...


Mr Kampyongo: … but none have been hanged. Let me also say that the law on land administration is adequate. However, what has been happening, in some cases, is that people tend to ignore the law with impunity. That is why we now insist on enforcing the law to the letter. A few days ago, the hon. Minister of Home Affairs gave the classic example of how we prevented land grabbers from invading a piece of land belonging to Galaunia Farms. We enforced the law even though the culprits had claimed to be our cadres. Some of them are still appearing before the courts of law, and that is how it will be. There will be no re-invention of the wheel. The laws are already there.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Hamudulu (Siavonga): Mr Speaker, I would like to ask the question that was asked by Hon. Namulambe, but in a different way. 

Sir, if I went for interviews before a panel that comprised the police, council, Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) and the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) officers, and, at the end of that interview, I feel that my case was not treated justly, where should I go to seek recourse?

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, yes, we appreciate that the law enforcement officers who sit on the panels are human. So, there are procedures for dealing with them if they are found to be compromised. Additionally, when you go to complain to the security agencies, you will not necessarily go back to the actual officer who sat on the panel, but to the institution they represented and that agency will find appropriate ways of handling their compromised officer.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mbulakulima (Chembe): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has issued a good statement, but the issue is not about good or bad statements. The matter I shared with him concerning the occupation of the road reserve in my area, in Lilayi, is now worse because the culprits have now built and occupied houses there. 

Sir, my concern are the party cadres. As I mentioned earlier, it is a good statement, but we have heard good statements before. The current Head of State, when he was hon. Minister of Homes Affairs, made it very clear …

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order, hon. Member for Chembe.

We have always advised that the preface to a question should be brief. We want to avoid long prefaces. Otherwise, hon. Members will end up making statements.

With that guidance, you may continue, hon. Member for Chembe.

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

Sir, the current Head of State, the former Vice-President, Hon. Dr Guy Scott, and the hon. Minister of Justice have all made very good statements purporting that the people who wore blue regalia in the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) now wear green to deceive people that they are cadres of the Ruling Party and terrorise people over their land. What practical steps is the hon. Minister taking to assure the people that his Government is different from the previous ones? This problem has continued.

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for that follow-up question.

Mr Speaker, the law enforcement agencies exist to deal with illegalities because the illegalities do not happen only once. Rather, we expect the illegalities to continue occurring because, where there are human beings, you cannot avoid people engaging in illegalities. People steal, get arrested and get imprisoned. However, others do not learn from their situation. So, they also steal. That is why we have prisons. We shall continue to enforce the law, and I assure you that we are serious and we mean business. Very soon, you will see the taskforce in operation. We will not accept to be patronised by criminals masquerading as our cadres. If they are our cadres, they must appreciate the fact that there are laws that they should obey..

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Speaker, I have a bit of confidence that the hon. Minister will do as he says, considering how he dealt with the fellow called Seven Spirits in Chibolya Compound when he was hon. Deputy Minister of Home Affairs.


Mr Nkombo: However, charity begins at home. When the Patriotic Front (PF) came into power, its cadres established an illegal trading place called Don’t Kubeba Market at the foot of the Independence Road Flyover Bridge. Hon. Professor Nkandu Luo was Minister of Local Government and Housing then. Further, the PF cadres, shepherded by the local councillor, decided to build stores in the car park at Northmead Market. An alarm was raised and the matter is in court. Just two days ago, Hon. Chitotela ...

Mr Deputy Speaker: Hon. Member for Mazabuka Central, the advice I gave to the hon. Member for Chembe applies to you, too. Please, wind up your preface and get to the question.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, I will follow your wise counsel. 

Sir, two days ago, the hon. Deputy Minister of Sport, Youth and Child Development, Mr Chitotela was at pains trying to convince his party’s Constituency Chairperson in a matter in which cadres had taken over a plot for a church institution called the Eden Institute. I would like to know ...

Mr Mwila: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mwila: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Member of Parliament for Mazabuka Central in order to mention the issue involving Hon. Chitotela when Mr Speaker directed me to issue a statement to the House on the same matter?

Mr Deputy Speaker: Yes, Mr Speaker directed you to issue a statement to the House. That is why I appeal to the hon. Member for Mazabuka Central to make his preface brief. I want to believe that the hon. Member’s reference to the hon. Deputy Minister will be brief and that he will go on to ask his question.

The Hon. Member for Mazabuka Central may continue.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister of Home Affairs for trying to protect his party cadres. 

Mr Mwila: No!


Mr Nkombo: Sir, what practical steps is the hon. Minister taking to correct the three cases that I have cited, maybe, with the exception of the matter that you have ably stopped me from referring to? When will he physically remove those people at the Don’t Kubeba Market like he did Seven Spirits from Chibolya Compound? When will he also deal with the issue at Northmead Market, which is in court, but his councillor and his people have continued to build market stalls in the car park? Sir, the Government has to walk the talk.

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I tried to avoid apportioning blame to political parties when I made my statement and when responding to questions. However, since the hon. Member has apportioned blame to the PF, I would like to state that we are not only dealing with illegalities from the people who claim to be cadres, but also from elected officials like councillors. For example, in Livingstone, the Mayor and another councillor elected on the United Party for National Development (UPND) ticket illegally apportioned land. I deliberately avoided raising this matter for obvious reasons. Suffice it for me to say that there will be no sacred cows. We shall deal with the cadres and the people entrusted with power by the citizens in the same way. 

Sir, elected councillors, including those of us in this House who are councillors in our localities, have a responsibility to bring illegalities to an end, although we, sometimes, ignore them for political expediency. Let us all take responsibility and be part of the solution because our citizens need to be served. We owe it to them.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Pande (Kasempa): Mr Speaker, ...

Mr Mwiimbu: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, I rise on a very serious point of order pertaining to the procedures we follow in this House. It hinges on Articles 51 and 87(2) of the Constitution of Zambia.

Mr Speaker, of late, I have noticed, with concern, the way this House deliberates on matters and makes decisions, and the way rulings are made. 

Mr Speaker, I seek your guidance. I am aware that, on a number of occasions, you have advised us, on your left that, if we have realised that an hon. Minister is misleading the House, we must raise the issue contemporaneously. At the same time, you have told us that we should never raise a point of order on an hon. Minister even if he is misleading the House. We have further noticed that, when there is something that you perceive to be wrong on the left, you censure us. However, those on your right enjoy with the intrigues of being disobedient on the Floor of the House without being censured. So, we need guidance. How can we raise issues contemporaneously when you deny us the chance to raise issues on hon. Ministers when they are still on the Floor? I would have raised a point of order on the hon. Minister for misleading the House, but I feared that you would rule me out of order. That is why I am seeking your guidance through this point of order.  To ask again, at what point should I raise a point of order on an hon. Minister who misleads the House? 

I need your serious guidance, Sir.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Deputy Speaker: I thank the hon. Member for Monze Central for his point of order. 

As the House has heard, the point of order is an indictment on or challenge to the Presiding Officers. So, we take note of it and will see where we think we should correct ourselves.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The hon. Member for Kasempa may continue.

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister’s statement was based mainly on the happenings in Livingstone City Council. Does he not suspect that what happened in Livingstone is happening in other councils? If he does, what measures is he taking to stop the scourge in other councils? 

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, if the hon. Member had followed my statement, he would have heard me speak about the Chipata Municipal and Kitwe City councils as well.  We know that it is not only the Livingstone City Council that has been caught up in illegal land allocation. Many other councils have, too, and that is why I appealed to all hon. Members to help the ministry with information on any illegalities in their councils. 

Sir, as an immediate measure, we have engaged the law enforcement agencies to investigate these issues. We do not want to end up finding who has been involved in these illegalities and, then, continue with life as usual. Rather, when the investigations are concluded, we want the culprits to be prosecuted so that perpetrators can learn lessons. That is how we are handling the matter.

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Hamusonde (Nangoma): Mr Speaker, ...

Mr Nkombo: On a point of order, Sir. 

Mr Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised. 

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, my point of order relates to Standing Order No. 30(1), which is on notice of questions of urgent nature. On Page 14, Standing Order No. 30 (1) reads as follows:

“Questions which have not appeared on the Order Paper, but which are, in the Speaker’s opinion, of an urgent character and relate either to matters of public importance or to the arrangement of business may, with leave of the Speaker, be asked without notice on any day.”

Mr Speaker, there has been a preponderance of instances when hon. Members have been denied the opportunity to raise points of order on matters that they consider to be of an urgent nature. For example, on 18th September, 2015, a Zambia Air Force (ZAF) helicopter crashed in the hills of Munyumbwe Chiefdom in Gwembe District. Definitely, that was a matter of public concern. When the parties involved in this issue observed that the Government had deliberately decided to keep the crash out of the public domain, and considering that, just under a year ago, we lost the Deputy ZAF Commander and a Col. Mweene in a ZAF helicopter crash, I raised a question about it under the provisions of Standing Order No. 30 (1).  However, I was surprised to be told that your office had considered the matter not urgent. Could you kindly guide us on how a matter of such a nature is not urgent. We need to be guided so that we do not continue to waste the House’s time by raising issues that are considered not urgent.  

Mr Deputy Speaker: I reserve my ruling on that point of order because I need time to consider it. However, let me also take advantage of that point of order to, once again, reiterate what many of you know or may not know. We have repeatedly advised that points of order must be:

(a)    on the maintenance of general order and decorum in the House; 

(b)    on a matter of procedure; 

(c)    relevant to the issue under discussion; and 

(d)    contemporaneous. 

That is just to remind the hon. Members.  I will still study Hon. Nkombo’s point of order and make a ruling later. 

Hon. Member for Nangoma, you may continue. 

Mr Hamusonde: Mr Speaker, supposing the councillors in Livingstone City Council sold the plots they got from the council and the people who bought them have started building, will the Government demolish the structures? Seeing as we are heading towards the elections in 2016, does the Patriotic Front (PF) think it will win the elections in 2016 if it demolishes the structures? 


Mr Hamusonde: You want votes. 

Mr Deputy Speaker: That is the kind of question hon. Members should be asking. I do not mean its substance, but the fact that the questioner went straight to the question. I am talking. So, he deserves commendation. 

The hon. Minister may answer.


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, my simple answer to his question is, yes, the houses will be demolished if they were constructed on illegally-acquired land. We will not consider the coming elections. The law is the law and people should respect it. We will not be patronised by people because of their votes. Otherwise, we may as well stop sending thieves to jail because we want their votes. Law-breakers are law-breakers and any illegality will be treated as such.  

I thank you, Sir. 


The Minister of Works and Supply, and Chief Whip (Mr Mukanga): Mr Speaker, thank you for giving me this opportunity to clarify issues on the procurement of the Copperbelt 400 (C400) Road Project.

Mr Speaker, on Wednesday, 23rd September, 2015, when the House was considering Question for Oral Answer No. 20 on the Order Paper, the hon. Member of Parliament for Lunte Constituency, Mr Felix Mutati, MP, asked the following supplementary question: 

“Mr Speaker, the Bank of Zambia issued a circular prohibiting transactions in United States (US) Dollars, except for authorised dealers. A few days ago, the Road Development Agency (RDA) and China Henan signed a contract in US Dollars. Are these parties exempted from the circular issued by the Bank of Zambia?”

Mr Speaker, this statement is a response to that question. 

Sir, it is true that a US$492,510,588 contract was signed between the RDA and Messrs China Henan International Co-operation (CHICO) Group Company Limited for the C400 Project on 21st September, 2015. The duration of the project is thirty-eight months.


Mr Deputy Speaker: Hold on, hon. Minister, there are loud consultations. 

Hon. Members, I want to hear what the hon. Minister is saying, just like I know that most of you want to hear him, too. Please, consult very quietly. 

A mobile telephone notification tone sounded.

Mr Deputy Speaker: You see, even a mobile telephone is interfering with our business. 

Continue, hon. Minister.

A mobile telephone notification tone sounded again.


Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, the scope of works for the project will include, but not be limited to:

(a)    design and construction of approximately 406 km of roads to bituminous standards;

(b)    junction design and improvements;

(c)    construction of bicycle lanes and walkways;

(d)    construction of pedestrian crossings, pelicans and footbridge;

(e)    construction of bus bays and modern bus shelters;

(f)    construction of drainage structures;

(g)    relocation of services and resettlement action plans for affected areas;

(h)    street lighting; and 

(i)    installation of road furniture. 

Mr Speaker, the works I have mentioned will be financed by the Development Bank of China, through an export credit offer loan to the Zambian Government, through the Ministry of Finance. The transaction is being facilitated by Messrs CHICO Group of Companies Limited, which is also the contractor for the works. 

Sir, the RDA finalised the C400 contract in United States (US) Dollars fully aware of the existence of the statutory instrument (SI) on the use of local currency for all signed Government contracts. It is worth mentioning, though, that the procurement of the C400 works commenced before the issuance of the notice by the Bank of Zambia (BoZ). That is why the fees were quoted in US Dollars. Further, preliminary engagements between the contractor and the Development Bank of China have indicated that the quoting of fees in US Dollars was a precondition for the finalisation of the loan agreement. Based on the foregoing, changing the transaction currency from US Dollars to the Zambian Kwacha would have impacted negatively on the commencement of the project, which entirely depended on the finalisation of the loan agreement. Therefore, abiding by the loan conditions is cardinal to the delivery of the much-needed road infrastructure, which will accrue numerous economic and social benefits for the Copperbelt Province and Zambia at large. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you. 

Mr Deputy Speaker: Hon. Members are now free to ask questions on points of clarification on the statement made by the hon. Minister of Works and Supply. 

Mr Muchima (Ikeleng’i): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has said that a loan was granted by the Chinese Government to the Zambian Government in the interest of CHICO Group Company Limited. That is how I have interpreted the statement. How much interest was negotiated for on the loan?  

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member has asked a new question. Additionally, loans are normally negotiated through the Ministry of Finance which, I think, would be in a better position to state the interest rates and everything else in that regard. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Mooya (Moomba): Mr Speaker, are the Copperbelt 400 (C400) and Lusaka 400 (L400) road projects part of the Pave Zambia 2,000 Km Project? I just need some clarification.

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, the Lusaka 400 (L400) Road Project is intended to facilitate works on 400 km of roads in Lusaka while the C400 is similar to L400, but is intended for Copperbelt roads. Pave Zambia 2,000 Km is a different project intended to facilitate the paving of 2,000 km of roads countrywide. So, these are three different projects that will lead to development. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Shakafuswa (Katuba): Mr Speaker, signing contracts in United States (US) Dollars is just bringing confusion. I was just talking to the hon. Minister of Finance yesterday about the fact that some shops at Manda Hill Shopping Centre charge customers in US Dollars when a circular that requires all financial transactions in Zambia to be in kwacha was issued. I do not know exactly where we stand on this matter, but I hope to debate it in the Motion of Supply. However, my question is: Why did we single-source lucrative contracts like the Copperbelt 400 (C400) and Lusaka 400 (L400)? We issued the contracts to one Chinese company, yet we have been saying that we want to grow our economy by empowering Zambian-owned companies. How will local companies participate when all the contracts are given to chocholis?


Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, I appreciate the question asked by the hon. Member for Katuba, although I wonder what he means by ‘chocholis’. 


Mr Mukanga: I thought that it meant ‘foreigners’. 

Mr Speaker, what has happened is that …

Mr Deputy Speaker: Actually, let me not let that term pass. I heard it, but I thought that it was something that most of you understand. 


Mr Deputy Speaker: Now that the hon. Minister has raised an issue with it, maybe, the hon. Member for Katuba can clarify. What was that word, hon. Member?

Mr Shakafuswa: Sir, ‘chocholi’ is a term used to refer to Chinese nationals. It is a fond term.


Mr Deputy Speaker: Oh, I see. 

Continue, hon. Minister. 

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, in all major contracts, whether the contractor is a Zambian or a foreigner, there is always a major contractor. In the two projects we are talking about, the main contractor is Chinese, but we want all projects to have a Zambian face. So, 20 per cent of the contract will be sub-contracted to Zambian contractors. We have had a few challenges in that aspect, but we are trying to address the matter. In the C400 Project, there will be a very big difference because we have gained some experience. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Mweetwa (Choma Central): Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister for trying to distinguish among the Copperbelt 400 Km (C400), Lusaka 400 Km (L400) and Pave Zambia 2,000 Km projects. In this regard, we always hear of contracts being signed and citizens’ hopes being raised that, with such contracts being signed, our roads would be worked on. So, after the contracts are signed, why are the roads, especially the township ones, not tarred on time even when the contractor is on site and the road is blocked? Such a situation is prevailing from Mazabuka to Choma, where works on roads have been going on for the last four years. Where is the problem? I ask this because, when progress is registered, the people commend your Government. However, when the situation is as it is currently, they say that the hon. Member of Parliament is not working. 

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, the question is on the C400 Road Project, but I will attempt to answer the hon. Member’s question. 

Sir, the Patriotic Front (PF) Government has been very faithful in the execution of road projects countrywide. We have done a lot of work, particularly in Monze, which I visited two days ago. Everyone can see our works. In Choma, there is also a lot of work that we have done and it is not the hon. Member of Parliament doing this work, but the PF Government. We did not request for the roads, but planned for them. Yes, we have had a few challenges in paying contractors on time, but we have slowly overcome the challenges. Some contractors had taken advantage of the situation and stopped works. Now, the Zambian contractors have been paid and we are slowly paying the foreign contractors. So, there will be a lot of work. You have seen that the face of Lusaka has changed. 

Hon. Government Members: Yes!

Mr Mukanga: Sir, that is what the PF promised the people of Zambia. We are religiously fulfilling all the promises we made and are working in accordance with our plan to ensure that we meet the aspirations of the people of Zambia.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister not aware that projects like the tarring of township roads were started by the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) Government?

Hon. Government Members: Question!

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, is he not aware that all the designs were done by the MMD Government of which the Hon. Mr Deputy Speaker was a member? 


Mr Deputy Speaker: Aah! 

Mr Mwiimbu: Sorry, Mr Speaker.

Mr Deputy Speaker: Do not drag the Speaker into this debate.


Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, the point I am making is that there was a project that was initiated by the MMD, starting with the city councils, followed by municipal councils and, then, the district councils. Now that we have gone down to the district councils, the projects that were started by the MMD are being implemented by the PF Government with the insistence of the United Party for National Development (UPND) hon. Members of Parliament.


Mr Deputy Speaker: What is your question, Hon. Mwiimbu?

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister not aware of all these facts?


Mr Deputy Speaker: I will not allow the hon. Minister to answer that question, especially because the Speaker has been mentioned in it. Otherwise, it might provoke an inappropriate response from the other side. 


Mr Mufalali (Senanga Central): Mr Speaker, Zambia is a sovereign State that is under difficult economic conditions. Why is the Government allowing international corporations to circumvent national regulations like the circular from the Bank of Zambia (BoZ)? 

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, yes, Zambia is a sovereign State and this Government always does what is right for the people of Zambia. All the decisions that we have made are to benefit the people of Zambia. 

Sir, what the hon. Member is talking about is not correct. I have explained that this was just a process of which one of the conditions was that the contract sum be in dollars. If we changed that, we would not have been given the money. So, we are very much in control and are doing the right thing. Our President, His Excellency Edgar Chagwa Lungu, makes the decisions and everybody is happy.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!




114. Mr I. Banda (Lumezi) asked the Minister of General Education:

(a)    how many additional classroom blocks had been constructed at Lumimba Day Secondary School in Lumezi Parliamentary Constituency following its upgrading;

(b)    whether construction works had been completed and, if not, why;

(c)    what the cost of constructing the additional classroom blocks was; and 

(d)    if no additional infrastructure had been constructed, why.

The Minister of General Education (Dr Phiri): Mr Speaker, one additional classroom block comprising four classrooms and administrative offices is under construction, with only final touches remaining to be done. 

Mr Speaker, the construction works have not been completed because the project needed additional funding. The District Education Board Secretary’s (DEBS’s) Office has been asked to forward the additional costs urgently. 

Sir, initially, K450,000 was allocated to the project in 2009 and an additional K200,000 was released later, bringing the total to K650,000.

Mr Speaker, additional infrastructure will be constructed once the current works have been completed. Additional funds will be sourced and allocated if need be.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr I. Banda: Mr Speaker, the project started in 2009, but it has not been completed six years later. So, after the District Education Board Secretary (DEBS) sends the bill of quantities (BoQ), when does the hon. Minister think the money will be released for the project to be completed? 

Dr Phiri: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member of Parliament is right to cry foul because this project was started in 2009 and it is now 2015, but we are still talking about it. That is why we have asked the Office of the DEBS in Lundazi to send a bill of quantities (BoQ). We want to complete the block, which is already being used. Thereafter, we will see what additional infrastructure can be constructed.

Sir, as to when the project will be completed, it will depend on how quickly the Lundazi DEBS forwards the BoQ. That is when we can see how we can accommodate the school, which is very strategically located. It is in our interest that the 350 pupils who use the unfinished building get the joy of learning in the right environment.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muchima (Ikeleng’i): Mr Speaker, when there is talk of infrastructure development, especially schools, my attention is always caught. 

Sir, the people of Lumezi in Lundazi District are suffering because of poor planning. There are projects in the Yellow Books for the last two years that were not funded, and I am told that, when such a thing happens, the projects are abandoned. In his response, however, the hon. Minister, who is a doctor, for that matter, says that the Government will consider the school, which he says is old. Where will he get the money, because Ikeleng’i is also affected?  

Mr Deputy Speaker: I like the way the hon. Member for Ikeleng’i wants to link Lumezi to Ikeleng’i.


Dr Phiri: Mr Speaker, I was also wondering where the meandering of the Ikeleng’i tributary would finally join the main river. 

Sir, the governance process is continuous. We are talking about a project started in 2009 and I am actually suffering for the sins of the hon. Member for Ikeleng’i. However, that is not how we look at developmental projects.


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order, hon. Minister!
I think this is the kind of situations in which a Presiding Officer might be considered biased if he or she keeps quiet. You referred to the fact that the hon. Member for Ikeleng’i was in the previous Government that started this project. Administrations come and go. So, that should not be an issue. 

You may continue.

Dr Phiri: Thank you for your guidance, Sir. However, you rightly hesitated to allow that question to pass because the projects in our Yellow Books are completely different from the one we are currently discussing. The project in question started in 2009, but we will complete it because of our love for the children. So, the hon. Member should have patted us on our back because, ordinarily, we would not have considered the project, considering that time has passed. However, we will endeavour to fulfil our mandate, as a poor people’s Government.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe (Chadiza): Mr Speaker, the two hon. Ministers have been to Taferansoni. 

Mr Muchima: Which ones? How do they look like?

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, Hon. Kaingu and Hon. Dr Phiri, who are both doctors, have been to Taferansoni.


Mr L. J. Ngoma: They are both fat!

Mr Mbewe: They are both fat, it is true.


Mr Deputy Speaker: No, hon. Member. Just ask your question.

Mr Mbewe: Sir, when projects are included in infrastructure development plans, they are budgeted for. Unfortunately, the project in Lundazi was not funded. Does the ministry have any plans to construct classrooms in the various schools in Zambia?

Mr Deputy Speaker: We seem to have moved away from the principal question.  So, I think that I will save the hon. Minister from that problem.


115. Mr Mbulakulima (Chembe) asked the Minister of Works and Supply:

(a)    what had caused the delay in commencing rehabilitation works on Mungulube/Mulumbi Road in Chembe Parliamentary Constituency; and

(b)    when the rehabilitation works would commence.

The Deputy Minister of Works and Supply (Dr Mwali): Mr Speaker, a condition survey was conducted on the road in July, 2015, and a request for funding to facilitate emergency works under force account was made. The estimated cost of the project is K870,000.

Sir, it is envisaged that the works will start once funds have been made available.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, both the hon. Minister’s and the hon. Deputy Minister’s villages are not far from mine. Therefore, they know that the road is in a bad state. 

Sir, the hon. Minister stated that works on the road are expected to commence once funds have been made available. However, the people of Milenge have been suffering for a long time. Can he assure the House that funds will be sourced before the 2016 General Elections.

The Minister of Works and Supply, and Chief Whip (Mr Mukanga): Mr Speaker, as already stated by the hon. Deputy Minister, the Government will work on the road as soon as funds have been made available. A request has already been made and we envisage that the works will commence by the end of November, 2015. The major challenge is that we are approaching the rainy season. Therefore, we hope to complete the works before June, 2016.

I thank you, Sir.


116. Mr Namulambe (Mpongwe) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing what the average cost of sinking a borehole and installing an Indian Mark II hand pump was.

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Ching’imbu): Mr Speaker, the average cost of sinking a borehole is K30,000 while that of installing an Indian Mark II hand pump is K10,000, which takes the total to K40,000.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. UPND Members: Aah!

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister indicated that the average cost of sinking a borehole and installing the Indian Mark II hand pump is K40,000. Is he not aware that, in Lusaka and the Copperbelt provinces, individuals sink boreholes and install the Indian Mark II hand pumps at 50 m level with 30 m casing at between K12,000 and K18,000?  Why does the Government spend more money to sink the same boreholes? Is it prudent expenditure?

The Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Kampyongo): Mr Speaker, the cost of sinking a borehole varies depending on a number of reasons, including mobilisation. Therefore, the cost of sinking a borehole in Lusaka cannot be the same as that of sinking one in Kalabo or Namwala because the costs incurred by the drillers will be different. Further, an individual can just go to a driller and ask for the service but, with the Government, there are investigations to be conducted. The hon. Member mentioned that an individual can drill a borehole at 50 m level at a cost of K12,000 or K18,000. However, some areas are dry and a drilling company cannot find water at 50 m level and will have to go beyond that, even down to 100 m. The way the diameter of the casing is engineered and the material it is made of also determines the cost because there are plastic and metal ones. So, all these aspects determine the cost of sinking a borehole. Also, sinking a borehole for a household is slightly cheaper than sinking a communal one. In any case, some products are counterfeit and, therefore, cheaper than the genuine ones. We, in the Government always have to use genuine products while an individual can use what they want.

I thank you, Sir.

Brig-Gen. Dr Chituwo (Mumbwa): Mr Speaker, I am getting concerned with the hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing’s responses. Being a councillor, I thought that he would want to maximise the use of whatever money is given to councils. Given the economics of scale, does it make sense for us not to expect the Government-procured boreholes to be drilled at lower costs in spite of the geography-induced variations? Can the hon. Minister not tell that the more you procure, the lower the unit cost? Why are we spending so much money on boreholes?

 Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I share the hon. Member for Mumbwa’s concern. Yes, ideally, we would want to sink boreholes at lower costs so that we can sink as many as possible. However, we cannot compromise on the quality of the works in the process.

Sir, some boreholes have been sunk and equipped just for them to collapse in less than three months. When that happens, the cost becomes higher because you have to engage another contractor to drill the borehole. Therefore, when our engineers design the boreholes and give specifications to the drillers, they make sure that the correct job is done at the correct cost. Again, we cannot avoid variation of costs due to the location of the areas. The physical geography of the Western Province, for example, is different from that of Lusaka Province.

 Mr Speaker, I thank you.

 Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central): Mr Speaker, the ministry is supposed to work out the average cost between the highest to the lowest. Why did the hon. Minister opt for the highest cost? He might be aware that the Southern Province has the lowest water table. In other areas, the boreholes need not be that deep. In the Western Province, the only problem there is the sandy terrain. Anywhere else, plastic casings have been used. So, why did the ministry not make comparisons of the costs so that it can settle for one that is not expensive so as to save the Government money?

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, we have given an average cost, which simply means that, in some cases, it could be cheaper than K30,000 while, in others, it could be slightly more. Therefore, the cost that we have given has taken into consideration the lowest and the highest costs. For now, that is the answer I can give to the hon. Member for Kalomo Central. 

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, the costing for Government projects has proved to be daylight theft in this country. For example, there are Government institutions, such as the Zambia Prisons Service, that sink boreholes at between K11,000 and K14,000. When he compares K18,000, as the maximum cost, with the K40,000 that he mentioned, does the hon. Minister not smell a rotten rat?


Mr Muchima: Is he not suspicious enough about this kind of costing to want to investigate the matter so that we can know the optimum cost at which to buy rigs and sink boreholes?

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for acknowledging what is happening at the Zambia Prisons Service. The former hon. Minister of Home Affairs, Dr Simbyakula, and I bought the drilling equipment for the Zambia Prisons Service because of the high costs about which we are talking. 

Sir, the process of procuring drilling services is done transparently in the sense that tenders are floated and bids evaluated, including by technocrats, who are the engineers who come up with the designs. So, sometimes, we need to verify certain things before we make accusations. No one would want to abuse public funds. Besides, there are auditors who follow all the trails of the expenditure. Therefore, all the processes are followed and technical experts ensure that the suitable bidder is chosen. When they choose the preferred driller, they would have considered all the aspects that I have just mentioned. So, we need to look at the processes that are undergone when the works are contracted before we can start peddling accusations. Like I said, with personal projects, the hon. Member can just walk into Baba Drilling and Exploration Company Limited and say that he would like a borehole to be sunk in Lusaka, and a quotation for K15,000 or K18,000 will be given. We all work with the drilling companies. However, that is not how public works are contracts.

Sir, the hon. Member may wish to know that the negotiations will depend on what sort of borehole, its diameter and depth, and what sort of pump you install, such as whether it is a submersible pump or an overhead tank. If you want a borehole that should last a long time or cater for a big community, certainly, some specifications will have to be adhered to. So, as a Government, we are comfortable with the current processes of procuring drilling services.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, I have noticed that the Government has decided to install India Mark II hand pumps in all the boreholes that it is drilling. Why has it abandoned the idea of installing windmills that can enable members of some communities to have cleaner water and engage in irrigation activities? Why are we retrogressing instead of progressing?

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I disagree with Hon. Mwiimbu’s assertion that we are retrogressing, as Government. The windmills had their challenges and, when the engineers looked at the complications in using the windmills, they decided that, for communal boreholes, the Indian Mark II pump was a better and more durable alternative. Concerning irrigation, our colleagues in the Ministry of Agriculture …


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order, hon. Minister!

Let me appeal to the hon. Members on my extreme right, especially the hon. Deputy Ministers, to consult quietly.

You may continue, hon. Minister.

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, the Government is also trying to lower the cost of drilling boreholes. It is for that reason that the Ministry of Energy and Water Development also procured some equipment and sent to the provincial headquarters. We want to provide quality water to our people in a sustainable manner. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Milambo (Mwembeshi): Mr Speaker, according to the hon. Minister’s findings, the average cost of sinking a borehole is K40,000. What are the minimum and maximum costs? Further, is the hon. Minister able to tell us the average cost of sinking a borehole in Lusaka?

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I think that my response to the question is quite clear. When we say ‘average price’, it means that you can even have a borehole drilled at K25,000. It means K30,000 plus or minus. So, I do not think that I need to belabour that point. I do not know how clearer I can explain it. The average is K30,000. 

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Lufuma (Kabompo): Mr Speaker, now that we have Provincial Water Engineers with the rigs, I think we have an advantage. That was brought in to cut costs. Given this situation, how do the two costs compare between the private sector, which charges about K40,000, and the Government? What is the average cost of drilling a borehole and equipping it? I want to know so that we can compare and see if there is colluding in costing.

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for that follow-up question. 

Sir, I do not have the comparative figures at hand, but it is common knowledge that most of the drilling companies are based in Lusaka, Kitwe and Ndola. So, if there is a rig in Solwezi, for example, it will certainly be cheaper for it to get into Kabompo and drill a borehole compared to getting a driller from Lusaka to Kabompo. So, the cost will be different.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Musokotwane (Liuwa): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister stated that the average cost of sinking a borehole is K30,000. Is he aware that, in certain parts of the Western Province, like Kalabo, the cost is half that amount, provided you use local technology, which does not require drilling rigs? The soil there is sandy and there is no need for machines to drive the rig. Is he aware of that fact? If he is, can we not take advantage of that and dig more boreholes in the Western Province using the local people?

Brig-Gen. Dr Chituwo: Indigenous knowledge!

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I am learning of the technology that is been availed by the hon. Member for Liuwa Parliamentary Constituency. We shall request our engineers to look at that technology and see how we can benefit from it.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Ms Imenda (Luena): Mr Speaker, a question has been asked about the Government drilling rigs. Is the hon. Minister aware that the rig that was sent to the Western Province could not work there because of the terrain? What has happened to it and why has the Western Province not got a replacement? 

Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I may not have details on that matter. However, I will follow it up with the line ministry and see how the issue can be addressed.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mweetwa (Choma Central): Mr Speaker, allow me to take this opportunity to congratulate Hon. Kampyongo on what I believe to be a well-deserved appointment. From where I stand, it is refreshing to see youths like him appointed to the Cabinet. That is the way to go.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mweetwa: Mr Speaker, I would like to remind my colleague that the majority of hon. Members of Parliament and many people are consumers of borehole drilling services that we are talking about here. It is very well settled that, at the personal level, all of us who have sunk boreholes or intend to do so actually acquired or will acquire the services at costs lower than what the hon. Minister is defending. Why is it that, when the consumer of a service is the Government, the costs escalate but, when it is an individual, the costs are lower and negotiable? The irony of it is that the Government consumes services in large volumes and, therefore, deserves to incur even lower costs. Why is my colleague, the hon. Minister, defending a wrong when he knows that these are the avenues through which public funds are abused?

Mr Deputy Speaker: So, you were only praising him for looking handsome.


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I am sincerely humbled by the words of encouragement from my colleague, the hon. Member for Choma Central Parliamentary Constituency. 

Sir, it is not a question of defending a wrong, but one of stating the facts as they are. We want to serve our people. So, no one would take pleasure in depleting the few resources that are available in fraudulent ways. The hon. Member will recall that, in Choma, for example, there was a Mr Coratom. I do not know if he is still drilling, ...


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order, on my left!

Mr Kampyongo: Sir, there was a drilling company in the Southern Province called Coratom, and that contractor sank most of the boreholes there because he understood the terrain. So, if Hon. Mweetwa went to Mr Coratom and negotiated for a borehole to be drilled in Choma, it would be cheaper than a borehole that would be drilled in Mbabala Parliamentary Constituency because the contractor would have to move from Choma to Mbabala, which is a number of kilometres away. He would also need to get his workers to camp there while they drill the borehole. Those are the issues that are taken into consideration. So, I have no doubt that our technical people and the procurement officers who evaluate tenders do a diligent job. 

I thank you, Sir.


117. Mr Namulambe (Mpongwe) asked the Minister of Agriculture whether the procured solar-powered grinding mills would be owned by the Government.

The Deputy Minister of Agriculture (Mr Ng’onga): Mr Speaker, the solar-powered grinding mills are a loan to the Zambia Co-operative Federation (ZCF). The federation will distribute the mills to the deserving primary co-operative societies, which will manage them. The ZCF is charged with the task of rolling out and superintending over the Presidential Milling Initiative.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, when the hon. Minister of Agriculture stated that mealie meal prices would not be increased, the following day the prices of mealie meal rose from K65 to K85 per 25 kg bag. Will the co-operatives bring down the price of mealie meal to K65, considering that the price of maize is still K75 per 50 kg bag?

Mr Deputy Speaker: I will allow the hon. Minister to answer that follow-up question even though your principal question was on solar-powered grinding mills, but you are now asking about the price of mealie-meal.

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, you have guided rightly. 

I will definitely not be doing my job properly if I went against your word and answered that question.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Deputy Speaker: He is taking advantage of my guidance.


Mr Ntundu (Gwembe): Sir, loans are in two forms. There is a loan with interest and one without interest. Will the loan to the Zambia Co-operative Federation (ZCF) attract interest or not? If it will, what is the percentage?

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, the loan was procured through the ZCF, as the mother body of co-operatives around the country. I do not have the facts regarding the interest rate involved, but there are definitely conditions that were agreed upon between the ZCF and the Chinese bank that will finance the programme. I can inform the hon. Member the exact interest rate later.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Simuusa (Nchanga): Mr Speaker, in the event of default, what measures or action will be taken on any erring co-operative?

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, the ZCF has been entrusted with the responsibility of managing the programme as a business portfolio and ensuring that the co-operatives not default on loan repayments. So, the ZCF will supervise the whole process. Suffice it for me to say that I do not think that the bank financing the programme would have agreed to do so if it was not satisfied with the conditions or sure that the loan will be paid in full. So, this is purely a business transaction. 

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Lufuma: Mr Speaker, we were told that this is a Presidential initiative and that, somehow, the Zambia Co-operative Federation (ZCF) …

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours.


Mr Lufuma: Mr Speaker, before business was suspended, I about to say that I am slightly at a loss, and I hope to get a clarification from the hon. Minister. 

Sir, the loan has been procured under a Presidential initiative to which the ZCF was initially not party. It means that the loan is just being imposed on the federation. Therefore, in case of a default, who will liquidate the loan? Is it the ZCF or the Government? 

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, as I indicated at the beginning, this programme is a Presidential initiative meant to achieve certain objectives, such as empowering rural communities, especially the women and youths. The other objectives are to solve the problem of escalating prices of mealie meal and take a business sense to communities or co-operative societies. 

Mr Speaker, the ZCF was party to the discussions of the programme from its initiation and is fully aware of the objectives.

Mr Speaker, the Government could have procured the grinding mills and given them out to co-operatives as grants, in which case the chance of the co-operatives repaying the loan would have been lower because Government funds are often taken for granted. However, the programme is being implemented on a business model. Suffice it for me to say that everything has been put in place to ensure that the programme works as a business. Otherwise, the loan would not have been contracted.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has said that one of the objectives of the programme is to curb the escalating cost of mealie meal. Is it now Government policy to enforce price controls on the staple food? If he does not mind, the hon. Minister can also tell us the milling capacity, per hour, of thee grinding mills so that we can tell their ability to make an impact on the market.
Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, I will answer the last question. 

Sir, the capacity of the milling plants is about 2 metric tonnes per working day. Mind you, they are solar-powered. So, they will be operated during day time. 

Sir, the mills are many, about 2,000, and scattered all over the country. So, yes, they will make an impact due the large number.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Konga (Chavuma): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has said that one objective of the solar-powered milling plants is to lower the price of mealie meal. Can he assure the House and the nation at large that, when operational, the plants will sell mealie meal at cheaper prices compared with that produced from the conventional milling plants.

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, we all believe that the price of the mealie meal produced by the plants will be lower, especially in the areas where the plants will be situated because the equipment is low-cost and the mealie meal will be produced within local communities, thus cutting on transportation costs that would otherwise translate into high prices. For example, if a plant is located in a multi-purpose co-operative society based somewhere in Luwingu, definitely the people of Luwingu, who normally get their mealie meal from Lusaka, will get it at a much lower price from a local plant. 

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Chipungu (Rufunsa): Mr Speaker, during the United National Independence Party (UNIP) Government, especially in the First Republic, the Zambia Co-operative Federation (ZCF) and other co-operatives throughout the country were given significant financial assistance. Unfortunately, what we saw was abuse of property and finances.

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

The Deputy Chairperson: The hon. Minister of Agriculture.

Mr Chipungu: No, I have not finished, Mr Speaker.

The Deputy Chairperson: Oh, sorry, you have not finished. Please, continue. There will be no point of order because the hon. Member was consulting loudly as I was listening.


Mr Chipungu: Mr Speaker, what steps is the Government taking to ensure that what happened in the past does not repeat itself? How will it prevent the abuse of the milling plants?

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, I definitely agree that there are lessons that co-operative unions, including the ZCF, have learnt from the past. Looking at the drive that is coming through the President’s Office and the ministry, the co-operatives will not operate the way they did in the past. In order to reinvigorate them, we need to give them a business sense and a push. We are clear in our minds that the co-operative unions will not go back to the times of the past when officers abused the equipment because they need to compete within the existing environment as business enterprises.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Sing’ombe (Dundumwezi): Mr Speaker, has the ministry already identified the beneficiary co-operatives? I asked this because the hon. Minister said that 2,000 units have been procured.

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, it must be understood that it is not the work of the ministry to identify the beneficiaries, but the ZCF, working through its primary societies. So, the ZCF has identified the beneficiaries and, as we know, it has several primary co-operative societies scattered all over the country and a criterion for assessing the ability of each co-operative to operate the plants and pay back the loan. I am sure that the ZCF stands on solid ground in this respect.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Brig. Gen. Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has said that the co-operatives will sell their mealie meal at lower prices because their production units are small. Can he clarify that point because one of the most important ingredients in any business is the raw materials. Given the escalation in the prices of inputs for maize production, how will he take care of that aspect to ensure that the mealie meal prices will, indeed, be lower?

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, currently, the maize that is grown, let us say, in Lundazi, is transported all the way to be milled in Lusaka and, then, the mealie meal has to find its way back to Lundazi. That definitely raises the prices. In the programme we are talking about, the plants are located in different rural places of our country where the grain is produced. Therefore, the mealie meal produced by the plants will be cheaper compared with the current cost. 

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mweetwa: Mr Speaker, are there any specific reasons these solar-milling plants will only work during day time? Ordinarily, such systems are supposed to store power during the day for use in the night. Are the systems bought by the Patriotic Front (PF) Government so peculiar that they cannot work in the night?

The Deputy Chairperson: Hon. Minister, if you have an answer, please, provide it.

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, there is no peculiarity in the design of the milling plants. The plants are small and their day-time production capacity will be sufficient to meet the demand in their locations. However, if the demand necessitates it, I am sure that they can be configured to work in the night.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mutelo (Lukulu West): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has talked about lowering transportation costs by locating the milling plants closer to the people and where the maize is produced, but he has not considered the escalating cost of inputs like fertiliser. Additionally, he has said that the cost of mealie meal will go down after the milling plants have been commissioned. If the Patriotic Front (PF) Government is very confident that the plants will lower the price of mealie meal, why has it been telling the private millers to reduce the price of their mealie meal? What is the Government’s worry if it knows that the prices will automatically reduce?

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, the PF runs a responsible Government that is addressing the current situation. For now, it has to negotiate with the millers to be humane. The programme we are talking about is for the near future, probably, the end of this year or the following one. Therefore, we still have to talk to the millers on the concerns we have now because we would like the price of mealie meal to be stable now, not tomorrow.

Mr Kasonso (Solwezi West): Mr Speaker, the Government installed one plant in Kibanze Ward, Solwezi West Constituency, a few days before the by-election. What will the price of the mealie meal that the plant is now producing be?

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, I did not research the actual costing of mealie meal currently. I could bring the answer to the House tomorrow. However, I know, for sure, that one of the milling plants has been installed in Solwezi.


Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, let me offer a bonus answer. The milling plant in Solwezi is not the only one that has been installed. It was one of three units that were acquired. The other two have been installed in Kasama and Luwingu. Therefore, it was not because of the elections that one was installed in Solwezi. I have to correct that notion. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Milambo (Mwembeshi): Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister has said that it is not the ministry’s responsibility to identify the beneficiaries or ensure that the loans are paid back by the co-operative societies. What, then, is the role of the ministry in this transaction?

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, I think that the hon. Member might have put his words in my mouth. 

Sir, the ministry is responding to the questions that are being asked on this matter, which shows that it is involved in the transaction. Otherwise, it would not be the one answering the questions. I know that the ZCF is now under the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry, and it is that ministry that will answer on the activities of the co-operatives. However, it is still one of the Government institutions. As a ministry, we will definitely be consulted and we will make our input into the operations of the federation.

I thank you, Sir.


118. Mr Ntundu asked the Minister of Works and Supply:

(a)    what the total cost of constructing the Kazungula Bridge at Kazungula Border Post was:

(b)    what the name of the contractor for the project was;

(c)    whether any other facilities would be constructed at the border post;

(d)    if so, what the facilities were; and

(e)    when the construction of the bridge would be completed.

Dr Mwali: Mr Speaker, Package I of the bridge project, which involves the construction of the main bridge, will cost US$161.9 million. This cost will be shared equally between the Botswana and the Zambian Governments.

Mr Speaker, the contractor awarded the works for the bridge is Daewoo E&E Construction of South Korea. 

Sir, the project will include the construction of other facilities in Packages II and III, which will include the construction of one-stop border posts on both sides of the bridge. 

Mr Speaker, the construction of the bridge will be completed in December, 2018.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Ntundu: Mr Speaker, at least, the hon. Deputy Minister has answered my question today. 

Mr Pande (Kasempa): Mr Speaker, are there any considerations of including a rail line on the bridge so that it does not only cater for a road transport, but rail transport as well?

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, the design of the bridge has a provision for a rail line in the middle so as to provide for future development.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Milambo: Mr Speaker, I want to believe that such a huge project is guaranteed. Which company issued the bond to guarantee it?

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, I cannot give the name of the bank right now, but I will find out and bring the information. However, the hon. Member should rest assured that it is a guaranteed project that was subjected to international bidding. All the procedures were followed. 

Mr Mooya: Mr Speaker, the guarantee is there but, for the first time, we have a contractor from South Korea, which makes me doubtful. Is there a guarantee that the contractor will do a good job?

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, I am aware that the hon. Member is competent in engineering works. So, he knows that, when we undertake the technical evaluation after the tenders have been pushed, there are many considerations that are made, one of which is the ability of the contractor to execute the works. After the evaluations, the contractor’s bid was the best and was awarded the contract after meeting international standards. So, I believe that the company is able to execute the job. If anything, I am sure that the hon. Member knows that South Korea is among the best when it comes to engineering.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mweetwa: Mr Speaker, given the fact that the contractor is new to this country, to my knowledge, was due diligence done to ensure that it will deliver the expected service?

Mr Mukanga: Mr Speaker, the simple answer is, yes, due diligence was done. Everything was done in line with the requirements. If anything, we had about three contractors who were shortlisted, but were beaten by the selected contractor when we carried out due diligence.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.




The Minister of Justice (Dr Simbyakula): Mr Speaker, I beg to present a Bill titled the Constitution of Zambia Bill No. 16 of 2015. The objectives of this Bill are to provide for:

(a)    the printing and publication of the Constitution;

(b)    the savings and transitional provisions of existing State organs, institutions, offices and laws;

(c)    the succession to assets, rights, liabilities, obligations and legal proceedings; and

(d)    matters connected with, or incidental to the foregoing.

I thank you, Sir. 

The Deputy Chairperson: The Bill stands referred to the Committee on Legal Affairs, Governance, Human Rights, Gender Matters and Child Affairs, which is required to submit its report on the Bill to the House by Tuesday, 17th November, 2015.  

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


Dr Simbyakula: Mr Speaker, I beg to present a Bill titled the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Bill No. 17 of 2015. The object of this Bill is to amend the Constitution of Zambia so as to: 

(a)    revise the Preamble to the Constitution in order to recognise the multi-ethnic and multi-cultural character of Zambia, to honour and recognise freedom fighters, and ensure that all powers of the State are exercised in common interest;

(b)    re-assert the supremacy of the Constitution and the status of Zambia as a sovereign Republic, and declare its national symbols and official languages;

(c)    provide for the right and duty of citizens to protect the Constitution and to compensation for punishment or loss arising from the defence of the Constitution;

(d)    revise the provisions relating to national values, principles and objectives;

(e)    revise the provisions relating to citizenship in order to permit dual citizenship and provide for modes of acquiring Zambian citizenship;

(f)    provide for representation of the people through a majoritarian electoral system of electing the President of the Republic and a mixed member proportional representation system of electing Members of Parliament;

(g)    provide for the rights and obligations of political parties, and establishment and management of the Political Parties Fund;

(h)    revise the provisions relating to the Legislature in order to provide for, among other matters, the composition and procedures of the National Assembly;

(i)    revise the provisions relating to the Executive in order to, among other matters, provide for the election of the Vice-President of the Republic as a running mate to a presidential candidate in a presidential election, and the appointment of Parliamentary Secretaries;

(j)    revise the provisions relating to the Judiciary in order to provide for the establishment of the Court of Appeal and the Constitutional Court, and revise the jurisdiction of the superior courts;

(k)    establish provincial assemblies and provide for their functions, composition and procedure;

(l)    revise the provisions relating to local governments in order to establish structures and principles of a devolved system of Government, and provide for the determination of election petitions by ad hoc local government elections tribunals;

(m)    provide for the institution of chieftaincy and traditional institutions;

(n)    provide for the values and principles of Public Service, Constitution of  officers for the Public Service and appointment of Constitutional office holders and public officers;

(o)    provide for defence and national security, and rename the Zambia Police Force as the Zambia Police Service, and the Prisons Service as the Zambia Correctional Services;

(p)    revise the provisions relating to public finance and budget, establish the National Treasury Account and the Compensation Fund, and provide for the enactment of legislation on budgeting and planning;

(q)    introduce provisions relating to the independence of the Central Bank, appointment of the Governor, and enactment of legislation on the Central Bank;

(r)    provide for Services, Service Commissions, Commissions and other independent offices;

(s)    introduce provisions relating to land, property, environment and natural resources; and

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

I thank you, Sir. 

The Deputy Chairperson: The Bill stands referred to the Committee on Legal Affairs, Governance, Human Rights, Gender Matters, and Child Affairs, which is required to submit its report on the Bill to the House by 17th November, 2015. 

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




(Debate resumed)

Mr Shakafuswa (Katuba): Mr Speaker, thank you very much for allowing me to add my voice to the debate on the Budget Address to this House by the hon. Minister of Finance. 

Mr Speaker, I think that the hon. Minister must have had a very challenging time when coming up with this Budget because of the challenges that this country is facing. 

Sir, I like the theme of this Budget, which is about fiscal consolidation. However, I want to understand what the hon. Minister meant by that. I think that fiscal consolidation means looking at the resources we have, safeguarding them and knowing how to apply them to needful areas. So, fiscal consolidation has to be looked at, as opposed to expansionary policies. What I see in this Budget is a continuation of expansionary policies that are not supported by available resources.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, I know that the hon. Minister wants to address the challenges that our people are facing. However, do we have the resources? We rightly agree that the increasing deficit has led to the weakening of our currency. This Budget, to me, is actually half of last year’s Budget in real terms. In dollar terms, it is only about US$4.4 billion. This means that it will not meet the objectives in terms of the services that we provide to our people. 

Mr Speaker, I want to concentrate my debate on relating this Budget Address to the 2015 President’s Speech to Parliament. 

Sir, we agree that the way forward is diversification. However, in countries that have been successful in diversifying their economies, there have been a diversification policy, direction and mechanism that monitored and reported back the successes or failures of the policies. I am scared because, in this Budget, we are talking about diversification, but I have not seen any practical and deliberate effort to diversify. Let me illustrate.

Mr Speaker, the fund for diversification is supposed to be found in Economic Affairs. However, under Economic Affairs, we have put K6.6 billion for road infrastructure development. We have also put money for rural electrification, the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP), fisheries and empowerment. When I add up the figures, I get a total of about K9.6 billion. That gives a surplus of K3 billion. So, which resources has the hon. Minister allocated to the diversification programme? 

Sir, the hon. Minister talked about FISP as one of the diversification programmes. However, this programme is not helping us diversify. How can a programme that concentrates on one product lead to diversification? I know that we have a lot of pressure because of high energy bills. So, in terms of the energy sector, when we talk about diversification, what can we diversify to? I am privileged to have with me a document that was authored by Zambians. This document mentions the alternative sources of energy that countries like Brazil are using. So, let us think outside the box and stop jumping to the conclusion that this or that has failed. There are countries where alternative energy sources have been a success story. Sometimes, these projects fail because established oil conglomerates do not want competition because they have invested too much in fossil fuels. Some countries make bio-diesel from soya beans, palm oil, moringa or jatropha. All these are alternative sources of energy. Some countries actually make bio-ethanol from starch. So, when we talk about diversification, why do we not have deliberate policies to invest in research and development to see how tangible these things are? If we conduct research and find that we can diversify our agricultural sector and change the kind of crops we grow, that might help us to come up with areas in which we can grow our economy. However, the question remains that of whether the hon. Minister is sure that the remainder of the resources under economic activities will help us to diversify? Is he sure that he has put in this Budget the direction and deliberate expenditure patterns that will help us become self-sufficient and avoid the foreign exchange traps that we are facing due to our over-dependence on copper exports? 

Mr Speaker, I have talked about expansionary policies. We came up with the Link Zambia 8,000 Km Project, which is a very ambitious programme intended to construct 8,000 km of tarred roads in five years. We are talking about 1,600 km of roads every year. That is more than the longest distance in Zambia, that between Livingstone and Mbala, which is 1,500 km. 


Mr Shakafuswa: In this respect, I would like the hon. Minister of Works and Supply to come to this House and tell us whether we have managed to construct 1,600 km of roads in the past. It is a very good programme, but should it be our core investment? Could we not have used part of the K6.6 billion that we are investing in this project on other sectors that would have an immediate impact on the economy? There are sectors in which we can invest K2 billion and get a huge payback to the nation within a year. Yes, roads are important. However, most donors have folded their arms and stopped funding our infrastructure development because of this programme. As a result, we have gone on the market to contract very expensive loans for us to meet these infrastructure development costs. We are borrowing at 9 per cent. Will we build any road that will pay us immediate returns above 9 per cent? The only way it will make business sense for us to invest into a project is when we can get a payback of 10 or 12 per cent per year so that we are able to cover our interest and make a profit. Can we come up with such ideas? 

Sir, this Budget is business-as-usual. We know the challenges we are facing, but we have maintained the same course. Sometimes, in life, when the going gets tough, one has to adjust. When you move a few steps behind, it does not mean that you are a coward or a bad manager. It simply means that you are trying to gain ample time to face the future from a better position.

Mr Speaker, I have noticed that most of money has gone into one sector and that, unfortunately, the sector is dominated by foreigners. The sector is also draining the foreign exchange of this country because about 80 per cent of the money allocated to the construction of roads is paid to foreign companies. Our foreign exchange reserves get stressed when it is time to purchase things like bitumen for the construction of roads. 

Sir, we know what our people are crying about. Why can we not realign our priorities in order to find something that will lessen the cry of our people? Instead of allocating only K1 billion to the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP), we could have got K2 billion from the infrastructure development budget and added it to the FISP budget to make it K3 billion. Do you know what could have happened if we did that? By next year, if God gave us adequate rain, the prices of food commodities, which are the major cause of inflation in Zambia, would be reduced. That, in turn, would boost the economy and improve the lives of the people of Zambia because Zambians would be able to increase to their food production. Today, we give the people of Zambia support for half a hectare. 


Mr Shakafuswa: Sir, in my village, with the prevailing extended family system, half a hectare is not enough to feed a family for a year. Where does the Government come in? Those of us who drive in towns are aware that the price at which you procure oil is very high and that you subsidise the people who drive. The pump prices are not reflective of the price at which Zambia buys oil. Why do you subsidise the people who drive and can pay more instead of subsidising the poor? 

Mr Speaker, this Budget needs to be realigned for the people of Zambia to understand where the Patriotic Front (PF) Government wants to take this country. The Government wants to build good roads for the people. However, it currently does not have the resources. We are financially constrained due to the global situation, not due to our fault. Why do we want to be super stars when we have nothing in our pockets? It is like a parent who knows he has no money, but wants to show people that he can build a very big house, yet his or her children go to community schools, or he or she cannot feed them. So, let us revisit our expansionary programmes. They are well-intended, but the country does not have the resources. I will be honest enough to say that we will live with this problem if the Government does not attend to it. 
Mr Speaker, yesterday, I passed through Manda Hill Shopping Mall and found those who own businesses there saying that they now pay their rentals in dollars. So, all the Zambians who own companies or shops there are trying to relocate. When investors come to Zambia, they should know that there are laws here. They are taking advantage of our foreign exchange challenges to disadvantage Zambians. So, I think that heads should roll. As the hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing said, there are no sacred cows. Let us start seeing action because the pain that Zambians are experiencing is real. If someone aggravates that pain, we have to protect our people. We are with the hon. Minister of Finance. We know that this Government wants to serve the people of Zambia because most of the roads have been constructed in places like Mtendere, and this is a very good move. However, we need to be realistic and tell our people that we have limitations. Unfortunately, for me, whilst I enjoy driving on these roads, my area has not benefited anything. So, I do not really know what we should do, we, Lenjes, who gave up this land on which Lusaka is built. Maybe, we should come and remove everyone from here and reclaim our land. We will live in our original villages here while everyone else will go to our current villages. 

Mr Mutelo: Hear, hear!

Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, after surrendering our land for the establishment of the Capital City, we are now being treated unfairly, like the Aborigines in Australia.


Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, the Government should be ashamed of its conduct. Why should we be second-class citizens in our country? Going forward, Her Honour the Vice-President and Minister of Development Planning, and the hon. Minister of Finance should identify the areas that are disadvantaged and find a way of aligning this Budget towards addressing their plight. That way, all the people will feel that they belong to this country. Most hon. Members, including the one for Ikeleng’i, have complained about this. I know that the money is not adequate, but there should be, at least, a dyonko to show the people of Zambia that they belong to this country. 

The Deputy Chairperson: What do you mean by “dyonko”? 

Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, it means that this Government should take even just a little development to all the people of Zambia. As a member of the Lenje Royal Establishment (LRE), I am very disappointed with this Government. That is why ndamulwita kwamba ayi chino chishi nchesu.


The Deputy Chairperson: What do you mean? The official language in this House is English.

Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, I mean that this country belongs to all of us. Just like the people of the North-Western Province are lamenting over the resources in that province, we also give this Government money. The companies in Zambia pay the taxes that the Government uses to construct the roads. Why should our money be taken to other areas via the Great North Road?


Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, if the Government has never seen people who can really get annoyed, we will show it how we do it.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Shakafuswa: It is just that we do not really want to take things that far because we need development in our areas. A secondary school should be built in Lusaka while the Mungule Road has to be tarred. Why should I be comfortable in town, where even compound roads are tarred while, in Katuba, there is not even 10 m of tarred road?

Mr Mutelo: Even Katunda!

Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, all the compound names in Lusaka urban, such as Lilanda, Chingwere, Matero and Chilenje, are our names. Why should some people want to come and boast in our land? One day, tulakwimikana teshi mukashibone sheshi tukachite mwebo.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

The Deputy Chairperson: Hon. Member, you know that the official language is English. Before I allow you to continue your debate, can you translate what you said.

Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, I was saying that the day people will hear us speak Lenje here, in Lusaka, they will not like us. The poverty that our people are facing cannot be left unabated. We want the Government to intervene.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu (Kalabo Central): Mr Speaker, I thank you for according me the chance to add a word …

Hon. Member: Tuye, mwata!

Mr Mutelo: Has the hon. Minister gone?

Mr Miyutu: … to the debate on the Motion on the Floor of this House … 


Mr Miyutu: … on behalf of the people of Kalabo Central. 

The Deputy Chairperson: Order, on my right.

Please, moderate the consultations. I am interested in listening to the contribution.

Sir, the 2016 Budget Address by the hon. Minister of Finance, Mr Alexander Bwalya Chikwanda, MP, is of interest to the people of Kalabo Central. However, the question that begs an answer is: Does this Address have any practical solutions for the problems faced by the people of Kalabo Central?

Mr Mbulakulima: What is the answer?

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, when I read through the Budget Speech, I found that it covers the people of Kalabo minimally.

Sir, I reflected on the past Budget Speeches and wondered on what bases the Speeches are anchored. In the 2014, 2015 and 2016 Budget Speeches, the hon. Minister of Finance indicated that the Government would construct King Lewanika University. 

Mr Speaker, Paragraph 69 of the 2014 Budget Speech reads as follows:

“Mr Speaker, Government will also commence construction of three new teacher training colleges in the Eastern, Western and North-Western provinces, and five trades training institutions at various locations across the country.”

My question is: Have these teacher training colleges been constructed?  

Sir, Paragraph 126 of the 2015 Budget Speech reads as follows:

“Mr Speaker, Government will embark on the construction of King Lewanika and Luapula universities in 2015. I wish to inform this august House that Robert Kapasa Makasa, Mukuba and Kwame Nkrumah universities are almost completed.”

Again, my question is: Have these universities been constructed?

Mr Miyanda: King Lewanika!

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, Paragraph 74 of the 2016 Budget Speech reads as follows:

“Sir, the Government will also operationalise Robert Makasa University in Muchinga Province and commence the construction of King Lewanika University in Western Province, Luapula University in Luapula Province and the three university colleges in Katete, Nalolo and Solwezi.”

Mr Shakafuswa: Shame!

Mr Miyutu: Sir, the people of the Western Province are as human as any other citizen of this country.

Hon. Member: Abana masheleng’i.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: They will not be consoled or satisfied by the words of this Speech. They want to see the actual structures in the province. Maybe, the only reason the Government makes these pronouncements is to impress the people of the province so that they forget the issue of the Barotseland Agreement.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: However, if it really wants the people there to forget about that issue, it should construct the universities so that the people there will not have to travel 2,000 km to Luapula Province to access tertiary education in tertiary institutions in Luapula Province, as it seems to be the current design. 

Hon. Member: They will arrest you.

Mr Miyutu: Is that fair?


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, the Government promised that it would construct a stadium in Mongu, but it has not done so and big trees are even growing on the proposed site.


Mr Miyutu: Sir, each time we ask when the Government will commence the construction of projects in the Western Province, we are told that there is no money. Further, our projects are always put in Phase III.


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, …

Ms Kapata: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Ms Kapata: Mr Speaker, I thank you for according me this opportunity to raise a point of order. 

Sir, are the hon. Members on your left in order to always complain on various issues when they do not sit in the House to listen to the solutions offered by the Government?  

I need your serious ruling on this issue.


The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

The serious ruling is that, as long as they do not see what they want to see, they may be in order to complain, …

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Chairperson: … and the Government is in order to provide, if it can, within its resources.

Continue, hon. Member.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, I believe that Budgets are prepared to indicate …

Mr Sikazwe: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: A point of order is raised. 

That will be the last point of order on the hon. Member on the Floor.

Mr Sikazwe: Mr Speaker, I rise on a very serious point of order. 

Sir, is the hon. Member of Parliament on the Floor in order to lament that the Patriotic Front (PF) Government has failed to implement development projects in the Western Province without mentioning that it is constructing …


The Deputy Chairperson: Order! Order!

Mr Sikazwe: … the most expensive road in Africa, namely, the Mongu/Kalabo Road? 

I seek your serious ruling.

The Deputy Chairperson: The serious ruling is that the hon. Member debating is in order to lament what has not been done in his constituency.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Chairperson: He does not have to refer to the projects that the Government has already implemented because everybody can see them.

Continue, hon. Member.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, I was saying that the Government should prepare a Budget that is realistic and one that gives confidence to the people. However, most people have lost confidence in the Budget because the Government does not implement the projects in the Yellow Book. 

Mr Speaker, the Western Province is very remote ….

Hon. UPND Members: Kwa hae!  

Mr Miyutu: … and has a critical shortage of infrastructure.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: Sir, I have never heard of any project that has successfully been completed in the Western Province. A rural water project was launched in the province but, to date, nothing has been done. Will we drink the promises …


Mr Miyutu: … that the hon. Minister made to the people in the villages? As I said, when we enquire why the projects in some places like Kalabo Central are not being implemented, the answer has been that there is no money. However, if you go round the compounds in Lusaka, you will notice that roads are being constructed. Will the people in Kalabo dance over the roads being constructed in Lusaka?


Mr Miyutu: Who said that? 

UPND Members: Who?

Mr Miyutu: Why should we dance when all the programmes on upgrading a mere 8 km of township roads in Kalabo Central have been suspended? 

Sir, the National Budget should cater for all citizens in this country, the Western Province and Kalabo Central included. Surprisingly, however, the Western Province, in general, and Kalabo Central, in particular, do not get any project funding. So, this Government should be fair and take full responsibility for the biased distribution of resources. The only project that has been completed in Kalabo Central in the last four years that the PF has been in power is the construction of the National Savings and Credit Bank (NSCB) Building. 


Mr Miyutu: Sir, no clinic has been constructed in Kalabo from the 650 clinics that the Government promised to construct countrywide. Not even a slab.  Today is 15th October, 2015. Four years have passed since that pronouncement was made, but nothing has been made.

Mr Speaker, on the construction of Kalabo/Sitoti Road, which is also called the Kalabo/Kalongola Road, we have been told that the procurement has not been finalised. We get the same story concerning the Kalabo/Sikongo Road. It looks like we are stuck on procurement. That is all we hear about. Even yesterday, we were told that the procurement is still in progress. When will the procurement be concluded so that we can also benefit? We want that road to be worked on because it is a shorter route to Senanga, Livingstone and Namibia. It is surprising that the Government is still mentioning procurement.


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, this Government says that the works on the Kalabo District Resource Centre have stalled for two years because the contractor has not been paid due to a lack of money. This is because it concerns ...

 Hon. UPND Member:  The Western Province!

Mr Miyutu: You see. Yet the hon. Minister says this is a good Budget. Yes it is, just like some coffins, also called caskets, are good and expensive.


Mr Miyutu: The question is: What is inside? There is no life.

Hon. UPND Members: There is a dead body.


Mr Miyutu: There could be flowers outside, but there is no life in the casket. Similarly, this thing (lifted the Budget Speech) does not hold life for people of Kalabo Central. It does not!

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear! It is a casket!

Mr Miyutu: Sir, on the street lighting project for Kalabo, we were told yesterday that some feasibility studies are still being conducted.


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, sometimes, I go round the compounds and find that there are traffic lights mounted on the roads, but they do not work. There is a difference between people who live in rural areas like Kaputa and Kalabo, and those who live in towns because rural people want their roads to be tarred, but the Government is failing to do that for them. The answer that we always get is that the engineers are still on the ground doing some assessment. However, when it comes to issues concerning Lusaka, the Government will go to the extent of overrunning the Budget and diverting the money meant for rural areas to implement projects. Thereafter, the Government will say that the rural areas are under-developed, forgetting that it is the one causing the under-development.

Hon. Member: They must diversify themselves!

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, I went to the Ministry of Transport and Communication to express my displeasure over the non-functional communication towers, which were installed over a year ago. I do not know the value the Government gets from those non-functional towers.


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, I do not think that there is a principle on which the non-operationalisation of a tower that was constructed over a year ago at a high cost can be supported. Suppose you ran a business like that, would that business not collapse by not earning any profit? The people want the service and the tower is there, but the towers have not been operationalised 365 days after they were installed, and we are still counting the days. 


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, the way to understand this Budget is to switch off the air conditioning in the offices and open the windows so that we are reminded that there are people out there who are feeling the heat. Alternatively, when preparing the Budget, we should switch our mobile telephones off so that we know what it feels like not to be able to communicate by mobile telephone.

 Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear! Philosopher! 

Mr Miyutu: When we use our mobile telephones, we forget the person in Ng’uma who does not have access to the service. You can imagine what happens at a clinic that has no electricity when a pregnant woman is taken there at 2400 hours to be delivered. I wonder how they handle maternity cases. It is a pity that this Budget has ignored some places.

Sir, the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP), which is supposed to help the rural communities, has not yet reached Ng’uma. I got concerned when the hon. Minister said that I did not know what I was saying on the issue of fertilisers because the bags were already in Ng’uma. The hon. Minister did not know that I actually sleep at the place where the bags of fertiliser are supposed to be. Seventy bags are still at the Boma, which means that the people in Ng’uma will have a shortfall of fertiliser. So, even if we get adequate rain, the harvest will still be poor in the area. I just wonder what those people will do because the Government got money from them and promised to deliver the inputs. Why does the PF not feel for such people?  

Mr Speaker, there is no transport in Ng’uma, apart from those who have bicycles. So, the people are unable to transport their produce to the market. Does the Government expect them to walk 65 km to the Boma to collect the bags of inputs? How can the hon. Minister come up with a Budget that does not meet the expectation of the rural people? Let us be serious. It does not cost much to serve the rural communities. We should treat the people in both the urban and rural areas with respect because we are all the same. If the flesh of the people who live in town is cut, they will bleed just like the rural people would.


Mr Miyutu: The red blood cells from a person who lives in town are the same as those of the one from a rural area and can be transfused into a person in Lusaka.

 Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

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

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso (Solwezi West): Mr Speaker, before I make my serious comments on the Budget that was presented to this House by the hon. Minister of Finance, I just want to congratulate Hon. Kampyongo on his appointment as hon. Minister of Local Government and Housing. Being a young hon. Minister, maybe, he will treat us better. 

Sir, the people of the North-Western Province, Solwezi West Parliamentary Constituency in particular, have literally nothing to do with what is contained in this little book called the Budget. I say so because there is no single project that will be completed in the province. Just upon looking at the Budget, the signal from the Government is lukewarm. It is business-as-usual as if we are not in a serious economic crisis. Who is the hon. Minister cheating?

The Deputy Chairperson: You may have to substitute ‘cheating’ with an appropriate word.

Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, who is the hon. Minister misleading when he says that this year is for protecting what we have achieved and addressing the challenges of the large deficit that the country is facing? There are no clear measures that will help us to achieve what he is stating in this booklet (lifted the Budget Speech).

Sir, this morning, I attended a workshop at the Radisson Blu Hotel, just half a kilometre from here, and I was shocked by the figures presented. Five hundred thousand (500,000) young people are kept out of school while 3,000 community schools provide education to 117,000 children in grass-thatched structures, ...

Mr Mutelo: There is Mitete!

Mr Kasonso: ... yet the hon. Members on the right, particularly the Front Bench, perhaps without exception, all drive V8 Engine Toyota Land Cruisers whose prices they most probably do not even know. Is it not a moral outrage? Do they know how many community schools the price of just one of those cars can upgrade? In 2011, when the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD), ...

Mr Ng’onga: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: A decision was made yesterday that there will be no points of order during the debate on the Motion of Supply. I started by being liberal but, then, I saw a proliferation of points of order. Therefore, I revert to the ruling. 

You may continue, hon. Member.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, thank you very much for that protection. 

Sir, what I am saying is that leaders must have a conscience. In 1964, our founding President, Dr Kenneth Kaunda, found a lot of money in the national coffers. Those of us who were pupils then saw the type of vehicles our leaders drove. It is shameful to see the vehicles being driven now, when there is no money in this country. The people on your right must be ashamed of themselves.


Mr Kasonso: Sir, in 2011, when the MMD was leaving office, the V8 Engine Land Cruiser was restricted to State House and the Vice-President’s Office. Now, even some hon. Deputy Ministers drive it at public expense, yet they have no shame at all. It is unacceptable.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, for the people of the North-Western Province, where the wealth is ...

Hon. UPND Members: Is coming from!

Mr Kasonso: ... thank you very much, where the wealth is coming from, what is there to talk about? During my election as Member of Parliament for Solwezi West Constituency, the Patriotic Front (PF) attempted to do all sorts of things just to please our people. To date, none of those things that they tried to do is in place. They went and opened a hospital that had been completed by the MMD in 2010 in Lumwana. The hospital had remained closed for some time. So, the PF borrowed some nurses from Mukinge and Ikeleng’i hospitals, ...

Hon. UPND Members: And now they have gone back.

Mr Kasonso: ... perhaps, some medicines here and there, too, ...


Mr Kasonso: ... to try and hoodwink our people so that they got votes. What a cheap way to hoodwink people.

Mr Kambwili: Ebali ba PS (Permanent Secretary), aba?

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, the PF went on to force the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO) Limited to put up some electricity lines at Manyama in my constituency to cheat ...

Hon. UPND Members: ‘Misleading’.

Mr Kasonso: ... to mislead the people that power would be taken to the area. Immediately after the elections, everything was forgotten.

Hon. UPND Members: Yes!

Mr Kasonso: Sir, the PF even told our people at Manyama that it would give them title deeds on land that had not even been surveyed. Surely, this is not the way to run the Government.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, that is about the conduct of our colleagues in the Government today.

The Deputy Chairperson: I hope that you will now move on to the Motion because, after all, you won the election. So, let us debate the Motion.


Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, let me get back to the Motion. On diversification, industrialisation is a logical word. The Government has to walk the talk.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso: Sir, before I came to this House, I had been hearing of clusters for four years. I do not know if they have a new name now, but we have a new hon. Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry.

Hon. UPND Member: It is still the same!

Mr Kasonso: By now, we should have allocated some money to operationalise an industrial cluster in the North-Western Province centred on products like honey, which can be exported to countries like South Africa. Two weeks ago, South Africa removed the ban on the importation of Zambian honey. We should also have built a factory to cane pineapples and fish for export in Mwinilunga.

Mr Speaker, in the tourism sector, by now, we should have moved away from depending on the Mosi-oa-Tunya Falls as the only major tourist attraction in this country. Everything possible was done.

Mr Kambwili: Question!

 Mr Kasonso: The hon. Minister should not say, “Question!”

Mr Speaker, a lot of money was spent on Kasaba Bay. The airport and roads in that area were rehabilitated. We even wanted to upgrade Lunzua Power Station so that it could provide power to Kasaba Bay, which was meant to be a new tourism product, but I do not even know where we are on that matter. 

 Hon. UPND Members: Nowhere! 

Mr Kasonso: We want proper answers from hon. Ministers on these matters. We cannot say that we will diversify without knowing the new products that we will start producing. Surely, we must be clear on what we want to do. 

Mr Speaker, the energy sector is one area where we can easily diversify the economy. After all, Zambia has 40 per cent of the water resources in the Southern African Region. Alas! All we do is talk. We just use big words for nothing. 

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso: Nothing will be achieved by our mere use of big words. We need to deliberately focus on working on the things we want to achieve. That is how we can make things happen. 

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, how can we have development when leaders antagonise serious investors like Glencore Plc, …

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso: …, whose business is bigger than the economy of this country? By antagonising such an investor, we are sending a wrong signal to smaller would-be investors in our country because the smaller investors always look at the way bigger ones are treated in a country. If we treat the big investors badly, the smaller ones, with investment portfolios of, say, US$200,000 or US$500,000 will not come and invest in Zambia. So, our leaders must conduct themselves properly so that they do not discourage investment. The surest way of reducing poverty is by increasing investment in the economy, and increased investment in the economy can only come from the private sector. The Government’s participation in economic activity should be very limited. 

Sir, for people of the North-Western Province, the Budget Address was all talk. There is nothing specifically mentioned here (waved the Budget Speech) that will be done for them. Even the empty promises that our colleagues on your right are very good at making have not been made for the North-Western Province. However, it should be remembered that lightening can still strike even when the skies are clear and blue.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, we must share development amongst the provinces equitably. During the time of Dr Kaunda and United National Independence Party (UNIP), everyone, regardless of which part of the country they came from, was happy with the construction of the Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) rail line and the Great North Road. Everybody was proud of the developments. However, today, when our colleagues build a school in Mushindo, they claim that is only for their people when it is supposed to be for all the people of Zambia.


Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, concentrating infrastructure development only in the constituencies of the Ruling Party is a mistake. 

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kasonso: Hillcrest Technical Secondary School in Livingstone and David Kaunda Technical Secondary School here, in Lusaka, were created as centres of excellence for all Zambians, not only for the people in the areas where they are located.


Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, in conclusion, what I am saying is that, please, …

Mr Chishimba: Ewali (Permanent Secretary) PS, uyu?


Mr Kasonso: The hon. Minister is asking, “Ewali PS, uyu?” I am proud to have been a Permanent Secretary (PS).

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

 Address the Chair, hon. Member.

Mr Kasonso: Mr Speaker, the people of the North-Western Province, in general, and Solwezi West, in particular, have nothing to do with this Budget.

Mr Kambwili: What?

Mr Kasonso: Yes. What is here for them?

Hon. UPND Members: Nothing!

Mr Kasonso: I will, however, not behave in an indecent manner and tear it.

Thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


The Vice-President and Minister of Development Planning (Mrs Wina): Sir, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.


The House adjourned at 1803 hours until 0900 hours on Friday, 16th October, 2015.