Debates - Thursday, 25th September, 2014

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Thursday, 25th September, 2014

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]






Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, I wish to acquaint the House with the presence, in the Speaker’s Gallery, of visiting hon. Members of Parliament from Africa and Asia, who are attending the Zambia All Party Parliamentary Group on Population and Development (ZAPPD) Conference, and Hon. Imran Ahmed, Member of the Bangladeshi Parliament.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: I wish, on behalf of the National Assembly, to receive our distinguished guest and warmly welcome him in our midst.


Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, in accordance with the provisions of Standing Order No. 131, the Standing Orders Committee has appointed the following hon. Members to serve on various Sessional Committees for the Fourth Session of the Eleventh National Assembly:

Committee on Communications, Transport, Works and Supply (08)

Mr K. Simbao, MP
Mr W. Banda, MP
Mr V. M. Mooya, MP
Mrs A. M. Chungu, MP
Mr L. Chabala, MP
Mr E. K. Belemu, MP
Mr M. Chishimba, MP
Mr K. Konga, MP

Committee on Agriculture (08)

Mr M. J. B. Ng’onga, MP
Mr C. Miyutu, MP
Mr V. Lombanya, MP
Mrs A. M. Chungu, MP
Mr K. Chipungu, MP
Mr M. Mumba, MP
Mr R. K. Chitotela, MP
Mr D. Kafwaya, MP

Committee on Education, Science and Technology (08)

Dr C. K. Kalila, MP
Ms S. Sayifwanda, MP
Mr B. Mutale, MP
Mr K. K. Hamudulu, MP
Mr C. Miyanda, MP
Mr E. Musonda, MP
Mr S. Mushanga, MP
Mr H. Kunda, MP

Committee on Lands, Environment and Tourism (08)

Mr K. Chipungu, MP
Mr R. Muntanga MP
Mr R. Mwewa, MP
Mr R. K. Chitotela, MP
Dr S. Musokotwane, MP
Mr O. C. Mulomba, MP
Mr H. S. Chansa, MP
Ms M. Miti, MP

Committee on Youth and Sport (08)

Mr E. J. Muchima, MP
Mr M. Mutelo, MP
Mr S. Chungu, MP
Mr R. Mwewa, MP
Mr D. Livune, MP
Mr W. Banda, MP
Mr J. Shakafuswa, MP
Mrs S. T. Masebo, MP

Committee on Information and Broadcasting Services (08)

Mr K. Pande, MP
Mr D. Mwila, MP
Dr C. K. Kalila, MP
Mrs M. C. Mazoka, MP
Dr E. Lungu, MP
Mr S. Chungu, MP
Mr M. Z. J. Katambo, MP
Mr B. Chitafu, MP

Committee on National Security and Foreign Affairs (08)

Rev. Lieut-Gen. R. Shikapwasha, MP
Mr M. Simfukwe, MP
Mr L. C. Bwalya, MP
Ms A. C. Kansembe, MP
Mr E. J. Muchima, MP
Mr S. Katuka, MP 
Mr S. Sianga, MP 
Mr D. Chisopa, MP

Committee on Health, Community Development and Social Services (08)

Brig-Gen. Dr B. Chituwo, MP
Mr C. Antonio, MP
Mr E. Musonda, MP
Mr M. Simfukwe, MP
Mrs S. T. Masebo, MP
Mr M. Habeenzu, MP
Mr L. M. Mufalali, MP
Mr R. Lingweshi, MP

Committee on Legal Affairs, Governance, Human Rights, Gender Matters and Child Affairs (08)

Mr J. J. Mwiimbu, MP
Ms V. Kalima, MP
Mr M. A. Malama, MP
Mr J. M. Kapyanga, MP
Dr L. M. Kaingu, MP
Mr S. Mushanga, MP
Mr M. J. B. Ng’onga, MP
Mr B. M. M. Ntundu, MP

After the Public Accounts Committee has been approved by the House, if any hon. Member finds that they do not belong to any Committee, they should inform the Office of the Clerk of the National Assembly accordingly.

I thank you.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!




41. Mr Mpundu (Nchelenge) asked the Minister of Community Development, Mother and Child Health when suitable transport would be provided to Kilwa Island and Chisenga Health Centres in Nchelenge Parliamentary Constituency.

The Deputy Minister of Community Development, Mother and Child Health (Ms Kazunga): Mr Speaker, the Nchelenge District Health Office has not received any new vessels other than the mobile hospital boats currently used by staff to deliver medical supplies or conduct integrated activities on the islands. The boats are also used for emergency referrals, especially maternity cases. However, the Government is looking into improving marine and other forms of transport for health workers across the country.

I thank you, Sir. 


42. Mr Miyutu (Kalabo Central) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a)    when the Government would provide a utility vehicle to Kalabo District Council; and

(b)    what measures the Government had taken to implement the ‘Keep Zambia Clean’ campaign in Kalabo and other rural districts countrywide.

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Tembo): Mr Speaker, the ministry is fully aware that Kalabo District Council currently has no utility vehicle. To that effect, the Government intends to support all councils with utility vehicles when resources become available. 

Sir, the responsibility of implementing the “Keep Zambia Clean” campaign lies with all the local authorities. The Government only comes in to provide policy direction and supplement the efforts of the councils. In 2013, the Government procured and handed over eight refuse compactor trucks, four skip trucks, 172 skip bins and 40 x 15m3 containers, all valued at about K25 million, to cities and municipalities. These efforts will be extended to all local authorities upon the availability of funds.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, where there is no will there is no way.

Mr Livune: That is right.

Mr Miyutu: Why did the Government neglect the councils financially for so long? Government grants would have helped them to acquire utilities like the one we are talking about.

The Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Chenda): Mr Speaker, the Government has not neglected the councils. I think that serious efforts have been made by the Government to provide resources to the councils. However, we all feed from the same pot. Despite the financial challenges the Government faces, it has taken over the payroll for council officers from Divisions I to III. That intervention is one way of looking after the councils, granted that there is a lot that could be done if money was available.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyanda (Mapatizya): Mr Speaker, transport is a very important factor in the running of a council. When does the hon. Minister think the Government will be in a position to procure a vehicle for the people of Kalabo?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, I cannot give a definite date when that will be done. However, I can assure the nation and this august House that the Government is fully aware of the difficulties that the councils are going through and is doing everything within its power and limited resources to assist the councils to execute the functions for which they were created.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Brig-Gen. Dr Chituwo (Mumbwa): Mr Speaker, having admitted that there is no vehicle at Kalabo District Council, how does the hon. Minister see the council carrying out its duties? In other words, what has been put in place to see to it that those functions are executed?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, obviously, it must be very challenging for councils that do not have vehicles to operate. However, one would assume that they use public or hired transport …



Mr Chenda: It is obvious that they use one kind of transport or the other. We know that this is a very serious issue. Those who were there in the early days when councils were buoyant and had their own strong revenue bases will agree with me that the responsibility of acquiring transport was not that of the Government. Councils were able to buy vehicles for themselves. There are a number of councils that are still able to generate their own income and buy vehicles. So, really, the issue should be looked at from both the Government’s side as well as the local authorities’ capacity. Like I said, yes, the revenue base of most councils has been weakened, over the years, and most are not in a position to buy vehicles. However, they still operate.

Thank you, Mr Speaker.

Dr Musokotwane (Liuwa): Mr Speaker, I am not sure if the hon. Minister is aware that councils like Kalabo actually ask for financial support from the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) that we are given. Otherwise, they would have been in more serious problems. So, can he tell us when the Government will be able to fully support poor councils like Kalabo so that we do not divert the CDF meant for rehabilitating dilapidated schools, clinics and other infrastructure to the administration of councils, which is the Government’s responsibility?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, I do not think that it will be appropriate for me to give a definite date. We are doing everything possible to get money from the same source that everybody here is aware of so that we can assist the councils. However, for me to stand here and say, “We will be able to do this by such a date” will be misleading to this august House. I can only assure this august House that we are doing everything possible within our powers to support the councils.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Livune (Katombola): Mr Speaker, with the clear failure of the Government to support most of the councils, like is the case in Kalabo, is it prudent for the Government to continue creating new district councils?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, Hon. Livune might be the only one who is not happy about the creation of new districts. Let him ask his colleagues, the hon. Members in whose areas the district councils have been created, how happy they and their people are. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chenda: The policy of taking governance closer to the people will continue. I think that we should make the Government easily accessible to the people by creating even more district councils. However, that is not to say that we are not aware of the difficulties that the councils are facing. We are aware and are doing something to address the challenges.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Pande (Kasempa): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister referred to the old days when councils had a strong financial base. What is the ministry doing to bring back those days?

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, it is not my intention to pre-empt the hon. Minister of Finances’ Budget Speech. Suffice it for me to say that we are making efforts to create a strong revenue base for councils to generate their own income so that they depend less on Government support.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Ms Lubezhi (Namwala): Mr Speaker, I appreciate the hon. Minister’s statement to the effect that the Government is mobilising funds to assist the councils. According to the ministry’s database, how many councils do not have transport today, countrywide? 

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, I do not have the exact statistics, but it is a common problem, especially for small rural councils, whose revenue bases were severely weakened by the abolition of the crop levy. We are aware of the existence of the problems and are trying to resolve them.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central): Mr Speaker, the question from the hon. Member for Kalabo Central was very specific. The hon. Minister answered that the Government had procured and delivered vehicles for cleaning up cities. However, the cities have private people who clean up the towns. Why did the hon. Minister not find it necessary to send one of the vehicles to Kalabo?

Mr Sing’ombe: Hear, hear!

Mr Chenda: Mr Speaker, if you look at the list we have provided, only eight refuse compactors and four skip trucks were bought, which are just a drop in the ocean. If we had the means, we would procure more and spread this assistance across the country. However, as things stand, we can only seek comfort in the fact that we have taken the first step in the long journey to resolving this matter. 

I thank you, Sir.

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


43. Mr Mwila (Chipili) asked the Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development:

(a)    when Konkola Deep Mining Project would become operational; and

(b)    what had caused the delay in operationalising the project.

The Deputy Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development (Mr Musukwa): Mr Speaker, the Konkola Deep Mining Project (KDMP), which involved the sinking of the deepest shaft in Zambia, has been completed. The middle shaft became operational in April, 2010, while the bottom shaft became operational in December, 2013. The developments to ramp up production have since commenced.

Sir, the delay in the operationalisation of the project was caused by a power outage in January, 2008, which resulted in the flooding of the mine. That, in turn, caused the volume of de-watered reserves to drop by 90 per cent. It took five years to recover the previous levels of equilibrium.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mwila: Mr Speaker, since there was that delay, is it possible for the hon. Minister to give me the time frame in which the Konkola Deep Mining Project (KDMP) will be fully operational?

Mr Musukwa: Mr Speaker, I have indicated to Hon. Davies Mwila, on the Floor of the House, that the plant is fully operational, as its equipment has already been commissioned.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, arising from the hon. Minister’s answer, and taking into account that this project is being undertaken by Konkola Copper Mines (KCM), I would like to refer the hon. Minister to an article headlined, “KCM Floods, Shuts. Miners Trapped, Minister Fumes” in the Zambia Daily Mail Newspaper of 25th September, 2014, which is today, and ask him whether the company is able to operate the project given the numerous problems it is facing.

The Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development (Mr Yaluma): Mr Speaker, Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) is the second largest mine in Zambia and contributes a lot to our economy. Therefore, it is capable of running the project. Yes, there were some issues during the course of the year, but we have managed to put the company back on the mend. It is sad to learn that the restriction of the supply of power to the mine by the Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC) will cause it to miss the production target we have assigned it for the coming quarter. While that is understood, the KCM is capable and willing to perform even beyond our expectations. The company has proved that it is even performing beyond what it tasked itself to achieve in the past years of operations.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Ms Namugala (Mafinga): Mr Speaker, I am happy to hear that the Konkola Deep Mining Project (KDMP) is now fully operational. However, can the hon. Minister tell me and, through me, the nation when the anticipated increase in production will be achieved. We know that the project is supposed to push production up to 6 million tonnes per year.

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, we know that the purpose of the Konkola Deep Mining Project (KDMP) is to help extend the life of the KCM. However, the mine only started using the KDMP in 2013. By the end of next year, the project will help the mine to achieve the set target. Production cannot increase overnight. It will peak in time. We are closely monitoring the company and will report when it hits the target. As I said, it is hitting the targets we set for it and getting out of the doldrums.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Konga (Chavuma): Mr Speaker, Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) has been in the news for some time now. We were informed that it is very rich, but was bought for a song by its current owners, who are now making a lot of money. As has been explained in a response to an earlier question, power supply to the mine has been restricted due to the company’s failure to pay electricity bills. Has the Government established the company’s true financial position?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, like I said earlier, the KCM was going through serious financial problems. It also had some problems that made it consider retrenching some employees. However, we have resolved those issues by putting the mine on a performance contract with the Government. Funding was included in the performance contract, with the parent company, Vendetta Resources, guaranteeing K400 million to support the KCM in tapping into various loan facilities to sustain its current operations. Vedanta Resources has also put in US$250 million to support the ramp-up in production that we are monitoring. 

Mr Speaker, yes, the KCM’s financial status was not very good, but the company has come up with ways and means of supporting and sustaining itself. I think that we are on the right track.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mpundu: Mr Speaker, how serious is the power restriction problem at the KCM?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, I missed the question. Could I just have it repeated?

Mr Speaker repeated Hon. Mpundu’s question.

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, the power supply to the KCM has been restricted to 90 per cent. This means that the company is receiving 10 per cent less power. The company has since decided to restrict the shortfall to the concentrator so that the rest of the plant can run normally.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Speaker, Zambians have been grappling with understanding the real problem with the KCM is. In other words, are the problems financial or are they created by the company’s reckless statements that you are aware of? My question is: Why has it been so easy for your Government to believe that the company has financial problems to the extent of failing to pay for the power it is supplied with, given the statements its Chairperson made about the huge profits the company has been raking from this country? Why has it been so easy for the Government to believe this one-sided story?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, it has not been easy for us to subscribe to that position. However, I would not like to end there. When I made a ministerial statement in this House, I indicated that the KCM’s debt was about US$1.56 billion. I also said that, of that amount, US$111 million was owed to local contractors and suppliers, including the CEC.

Mr Speaker, we know that the KCM’s problems were not purely financial. I totally concur with Hon. Nkombo. They are partly a result of many things that included poor management. However, we have tried, as a Government, to do what we can. We know that the KCM is a very good investment to Zambians. Therefore, as partners with the KCM, we need to bring it back on track so that it continues to support this economy through mining.

Mr Speaker, I thank you. 

Dr Kaingu (Mwandi): Mr Speaker, I would like the hon. Minister to help me reconcile my figures. The question by Hon. Namugala implied that, if the KCM hit full production, it would push copper production to 6 million tonnes per year. However, when you look at the Speech that was presented by His Excellency the President, the figures are far below. Please, help me. Is it true that, once in full production, the KCM will push Zambia’s copper production to 6 million tonnes per year?

Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, the figures at play are debatable, but the rationale behind the KDMP is to change the method of mining so as to increase the lifespan of the mine and production. However, we cannot just ramp up from zero straight up to that much. Yes, we have a target that we are trying to achieve when the operations at the KDMP reach their peak. As regards the hon. Member’s need to reconcile the figures, I recommend that he gets a copy of the annual report for the KCM in which the company projects all its figures. It will help him to reconcile his data.

I thank you, Sir.


44. Mr Katuka (Mwinilunga) asked the Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education:

(a)    how many public and privately-owned teachers training colleges there were in Zambia as of August, 2014;

(b)    what the enrolment levels, on average, for colleges were;

(c)    how many teachers had graduated from the colleges as of December, 2013;

(d)    what the shortfall of teachers countrywide was; and

(e)    what measures the Government had taken to mitigate the shortage.

The Deputy Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education (Mr Mabumba): Mr Speaker, there are eleven Government-owned and forty-eight privately-owned teachers training colleges countrywide.

Sir, the average enrolment levels are 460 in Government colleges and 289 in private colleges. 

Sir, the number of teachers who graduated from colleges, as at December, 2013, is 2,634.

Mr Speaker, the estimated shortfall of teachers countrywide is 22,000. Currently, the ministry has 91,091 teachers. 

Sir, to mitigate the shortage, the Government has implemented a fast-track training programme for teachers, especially of mathematics and science. It has also been continuously filling vacancies that arise in the Teaching Service because of death, resignation or retirement. The annual net teacher recruitment has been about 5,000. The Government has also been constructing additional infrastructure at selected colleges of education so as to increase their enrolment levels.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Katuka: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister for that answer. However, it does not give hope to the children in our rural constituencies. Is it possible for the ministry to revert to the old system in which it directly recruited all the teachers from the training institutions?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, that is an option that we could consider. However, the currently used mode of recruiting teachers through the District Education Board Secretaries (DEBS) and Provincial Education Offices (PEOs) is also working. If you look at Mwinilunga, where Hon. Katuka comes from, especially in the rural areas, for instance, there are a variety of reasons for the shortages there, one of them being the lack of infrastructure. We will look at his option and see whether recruiting directly from the colleges will solve the problem.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe (Chadiza): Mr Speaker, the Patriotic Front (PF) Government and the hon. Minister are on record saying that they would introduce licences for teachers. When will the programme start?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, as you are aware, we passed the Teaching Profession Act here in 2013. Since then, the hon. Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education has launched the Teaching Council. However, the council has not started operating on a full scale. The House will be informed of further developments in due course.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamudulu (Siavonga): Mr Speaker, the shortfall of 22,000 teachers makes very sad reading. Hon. Minister, how does that sit with the current recruitment freeze that the PF Government has imposed? 

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, concerning the shortage of 22,000 teachers, like I said earlier, we recruit about 5,000 teachers annually, which means that it will take us about four years to meet the shortfall.

Mr Livune: Question!

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, I really do not think that the recruitment freeze has affected us significantly because …

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Mabumba: Hon. Colleagues, give me a bit of time. 

I do not think that we have been affected significantly. I am sure that those who read newspapers saw an advertisement for recruitment in August, 2014. Even within the context of the freeze, some ministries were allowed to replace their staff in respective sectors. The Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education is one of them. I am sure that we will recruit a few teachers, everything being equal.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Matafwali (Bangweulu): Mr Speaker, it is quite evident that the private universities and colleges are assisting the Government in up-scaling the levels of education in the country. Does the Government have any intention of helping private universities and colleges by granting bursaries to students in these colleges and universities?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, there is a question on bursaries on the Order Paper, and I am sure that his question will be answered through that question.

I thank you, Sir.

Prof. Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda): Mr Speaker, forty-eight privately-owned colleges against eleven Government colleges poses the challenge of quality assurance. Can the hon. Minister tell us what quality assurance measures are in place to safeguard high standards and competence in the training of teachers in privately-owned colleges?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, there is a Directorate of Standards and Curriculum in the ministry, which registers and looks at quality assurance in the colleges. However, I have to admit that the directorate does not have much power because it lacks a legal framework in which to pursue matters of quality in our colleges. One of the purposes for bringing the Teaching Profession Act to this House was to accredit all the teacher training colleges in Zambia to the Teaching Council. With that Act, we are sure that we will enhance quality assurance in our colleges.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Musokotwane: Mr Speaker, I understand the shortage of teachers in the country. However, is the hon. Minister aware that there are schools, such as Mushikula, Liuwa and Sikunde, that have only one teacher each while one has none at all? If he is aware of this anomaly, what is he doing to correct the situation? I do not believe that we should allow a situation in which there is only one teacher at a school.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, like I said when I answered Hon. Katuka’s question, that is one of the challenges facing the rural constituencies. In terms of addressing that challenge, there are a number of interventions we can make, one of which is building additional housing for most of these schools, instead of the current situation in which some schools have only one staff house. Even if we deploy teachers to that school, they will go and report, then, after a short period, they will start asking for transfers. We need to work as a team to continue providing additional infrastructure in schools so that, when we deploy the teachers, they will be able to remain at the schools.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister for recruiting teachers. However, is he aware that there are some teachers who have been working for more than five years now, but are still not on the payroll? If he is aware, what is he doing about it?

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, I am not aware. If there are such cases, I ask Hon. Dr Kaingu to bring them forward so that we can resolve them.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Lufuma (Kabompo West): Mr Speaker, …

Dr Kaingu: On a point of order, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Dr Kaingu: You wanted me to say, “Three years ago”?

Mr Speaker, I am amused by the hon. Deputy Minister’s answer, to the effect that he is not aware that there are teachers who are not on the payroll when, only yesterday, I passed him a list of teachers in Mwandi who have not been on the payroll for, at least, three years. He also has in his custody a letter from the District Education Board Secretary (DEBS) for Mwandi on the same subject. Is he in order to mislead this House by saying that he is not aware of this matter?

Mr Speaker: The problem, hon. Member for Mwiimbu, …


Mr Speaker: … Mwandi, is that there is a discrepancy between the information you supplied him in your dialogue with him and the question you have asked. I think that the hon. Minister was in order to respond honestly, and I take his word, that he is not aware. 

Dr Kaingu interjected. 

Mr Speaker: Hon. Member for Mwandi, I have already said that there is a discrepancy between what you discussed with the hon. Minister and your question. 

Hon. Member for Kabompo West, you may continue. 

Mr Lufuma: Hon. Minister, yes, we have read the newspapers and learnt that you are replacing teachers. Are you implying that replacing teachers is the same as recruiting teachers, and that your replacement of teachers will really reduce the shortfall? Please, clarify.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, for instance, if I teach at a given school and retire, go on transfer or die, I would be creating a vacancy. This is where replacement comes in. So, if I am transferred and replaced by another teacher, it means the vacancy that existed at the school where I initially was has been filled. That reduces the shortfall of teachers. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Speaker: I will have the last question on this matter from the hon. Member for Katombola. 

Mr Livune: Mr Speaker, the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education has received a number of requests for some community schools to be gazetted into fully-fledged Government schools upon meeting the set criteria. Does the deficit of 22,000 teachers include those required for community schools? If not, then, he should confirm that the shortfall has been understated. 

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, let me repeat what I said earlier. The estimated shortfall of teachers countrywide is 22,000. Therefore, all the schools in the republic are included.

I thank you, Sir. 


Prof. Lungwangwa asked the Minister of Foreign Affairs:

(a)    what economic benefits the nation had gained from the work of the following foreign missions:

(i)    Washington, DC.;

(ii)    Geneva;

(iii)    New Delhi;

(iv)    Tokyo; and

(v)    London;

(b)    how much of the economic benefits from the foreign missions above had resulted in rural development; and

(c)    what economic benefits Nalikwanda Parliamentary Constituency had derived from the interventions of the above missions. 

The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs (Mr Namulambe): Mr Speaker, the economic benefits derived by the nation from the work of the missions in Washington, DC., London, New Delhi, Tokyo and Geneva include the following: 

(a)    close to US$368 million for mitigating the impact of HIV/AIDS from the Presidential Emergency Plan for Aids Relief (PEPFAR); 

(b)    Zambian products enjoy preferential access to United State (US) markets under the Africa Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA);

(c)    US$ 354.8 million compact investments in water, sanitation and drainage sector under the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC);

(d)    continued technical assistance from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in various areas, including agriculture, health and economic growth; 

(e)    tremendous support from the British Government, mainly in the form of development aid, technical assistance, scholarships, foreign direct investment (FDI) and employment and market creation for Zambian products;

(f)    assistance to institutions in Zambia that promote improved public finance management, prevention, investigation and prosecution of corruption cases by the British Government’s Department for International Development (DFID);

(g)    huge investments in Zambia by major Indian companies like Tata, Nava Bharat and Taurian Manganese Limited are creating employment for Zambians and contributing to Zambia’s economic growth; and

(h)    technical assistance from Japan through the Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA), whose projects are spread across various sectors, including agriculture, health and infrastructure development, notably the construction of the Lusaka ring roads, one-stop border post at Chirundu and the Lusaka South Multi-Facility Economic Zone (MFEZ), which will attract investors and create employment.

Mr Speaker, the role of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is to promote trade, investment and development co-operation between Zambia and the international community. The mandate of ascertaining the accrued economic benefits in terms of rural falls on other line ministries and institutions. The collective efforts of our missions have contributed to the creation of jobs, aid projects and taxes for the Treasury, which contribute to rural development through the construction of roads, schools and hospitals in rural areas. The following are some of the economic benefits known by my ministry to have resulted in rural development:

(a)    provision of a line of credit for the construction of 650 rural health posts throughout the country by the Indian Government;

(b)    rural farmers who produce cotton and other agricultural products have an opportunity to access the US market through AGOA;

(c)    under the Community Health Improvement Project, USAID supplements Government efforts to decentralise health care services while the volunteers work with, and empower, the village-level neighbourhood committees;

(d)    the Rural Aquaculture Promotion Programme (RAPP) under the USAID is helping to develop the quality and quantity of fish culture activities in rural farming communities; 

(e)    rural communities are benefitting from the DFID programmes for 2014-2015, which include training of 5,000 community health assistants to improve health care for 7.5 million rural Zambians and support to increased productivity for small-holder farmers;

(f)    the International Trade Centre (ITC) in Geneva is assisting Zambia in the honey sector under the Promoting Intra-regional Trade in Eastern and Southern Africa project funded by Finland. The programme is designed to promote honey exports through value addition; and

(g)    support worth US$1.5 million from the Japanese Government through the Rural Extension Service Capacity Advancement Project (RESCAP) (2009-2014), which is intended to improve the provision of rural extension services in the Northern and Western provinces.

Mr Speaker, there are many direct and indirect benefits to rural areas from what has been itemised, such as the construction the 650 health posts countrywide.  

I thank you, Sir. 

Prof. Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, it is very clear from the hon. Minister’s response that, as a country, we do not have an inter-ministerial strategic policy direction that can orient our foreign missions towards the promotion of rural development. What measures is the ministry taking to orientate the ambassadors and high commissioners representing us in foreign countries towards the promotion of rural development? 

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, when you listen to the President’s Speech at the Official Opening of Parliament last year, you will hear him emphasise economic diplomacy. To that effect, our ministry, in collaboration with other ministries, has come up with a committee that looks into what the hon. Member has talked about.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, Hon. Prof. Lungwangwa wanted to know what the country has gained from the work done by our foreign missions. I disagree with the hon. Deputy Minister’s statement that all the benefits that we are getting are a result of the work of the missions. For example, the Lusaka Ring Roads Project is not a result of the work of the missions because they were personally negotiated by the late President, Dr Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, SC., may his soul rest in peace.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Hon. Government Member: Question!

Mr Pande: Dr Musokotwane and I were present at those negotiations and it was not …

Hon. Government Members: Question!

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister has also referred to the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) …

Mr Speaker: Hon. Member, what is your question?

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, I will come to that. 

Sir, the hon. Minister referred to AGOA as one of the results of the work that the missions were doing. What products is Zambia selling on American markets that we are benefiting from as a result of AGOA?

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, I will only attempt to answer one of the questions because the other should have been directed to one of the line ministries. 

Sir, the hon. Member of Parliament for Kasempa was once the hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs and is aware that the President does not negotiate in a vacuum. He does so on the basis of information given to him by officials. I take it that the information that the President used when he was negotiating was given to him by the diplomatic staff.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Namugala: Mr Speaker, does the hon. Minister mean that all the social and economic benefits are as a result of the direct efforts of the missions? If it is not, and if the Government has done its cost-benefit analysis, is it still prudent for Zambia to keep the missions open at huge cost when we all know that most of the benefits are not as a result of direct effort by our officers in missions abroad? 

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, I served as Cabinet Minister in the previous administration, and one thing I did not appreciate was the fact that there were reports sent by these missions to the ministry, which tend to benefit the other ministries more. When Cabinet memoranda are prepared for consideration, information sent by the missions is used. It is unfortunate that some of us who did not serve in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs may not have information on what happens in those missions. 

Sir, in my view, it is still very beneficial that the missions continue. 

I thank you, Sir.

Brig-Gen. Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, why do we continue to have so many visits by Cabinet Ministers to countries where we have high commissioners and ambassadors if the missions have done such a wonderful job? Is that not a waste of money?

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, as a result of the work being done, there are some decisions that need to be made at a higher level, thereby necessitating high-level visits. I read a newspaper article that alleged that Zambia’s failure to host the 2019 Africa Cup could have been a result of the hon. Minister of Sport and Youth not attending the meeting at which the selections were done. Hon. Ministers have to travel because, in some instances, they have to sign agreements with the relevant ministries in the other countries. 

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Musokotwane: Mr Speaker, we read in The Post Newspaper of 23rd September, 2014, that the hon. Minister of Finance feared that the more than US$300 million Millennium Challenge Account protect to supply water to Lusaka might be withdrawn by the American Government for reasons that he did not disclose. 

Hon. Member: Poor governance.

Dr Musokotwane: Could you explain what the Zambian Mission in Washington is doing to ensure that the hon. Minister’s fear does not materialise? 

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, I did not read the article the hon. Member referred to and have not asked the hon. Minister of Finance whether the article was correctly attributed to him. 

Hon. Government Member: It was the Zambian Watchdog.

Mr Namulambe: As far as we are concerned, we have not received any written correspondence to that effect. So, it is difficult for me to respond to hearsay.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Speaker: Apart from that and, again, just to provide guidance, let us ask supplementary questions. This strikes me as a question that would require further investigation, anyway.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, I get the feeling that the hon. Member of Parliament for Nalikwanda asked this question in order to get answers on what socio-economic benefits are accruing to the constituency that he represents which, like many others, is typically rural. In his response, the hon. Minister gave, as an example, the construction of the 650 health posts.

Sir, I am aware that the financing for the construction of the 650 health posts was obtained through a commercial loan under heavy-handed conditions that included the importation of human resource from India to assemble prefabricated structures. Can the hon. Minister, therefore, name the socio-economic benefits, other than the villagers’ inherent human right to medication, which is irrespective of the existence of the missions. 

Mr Namulambe: Mr Speaker, the question by the hon. Member for Nalikwanda was very explicit and I gave an explicit response according to the question that was raised. I will refer the hon. Member of Parliament for Mazabuka Central to the answer that I gave in relation to the principal question. In terms of the loan that he is talking about, even in the Bible, people had to pray in order for manna to drop. So, even for the loans to materialise, people had to ask. You cannot say that the loan just came. It had to be negotiated, and it takes people to initiate things. 

I thank you, Sir. 


46. Mr Phiri (Mkaika) asked the Minister of Community Development, Mother and Child Health:

(a)    when a skills training centre for women and youths would be constructed in Katete District; and

(b)    what the estimated cost of the project was.

Ms Kazunga: Mr Speaker, the ministry already has a skills training centre for women and youths in Katete District. However, the centre has not been active because it was in a deplorable state. The ministry, together with the Provincial Administration (PA) in the Eastern Province, is currently renovating the centre, which is now almost ready to commence training activities. The administration block and classrooms have been completed while the dormitories are almost done.

Sir, the estimated cost of the project is K600,000, of which K390,000 has been spent so far. The remaining works will cost K210,000.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Phiri: Mr Speaker, when is the remaining amount of money likely to be released?

Ms Kazunga: Mr Speaker, since the centre is supposed to open in October, 2014, the funds will be released soon.

I thank you, Sir.


47. Ms Kansembe (Lukashya) asked the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education what plans the Government had, in terms of infrastructure development, for Lualuo Primary School in Lukashya Parliamentary Constituency, which was upgraded to a secondary school and whose first Grade 10 class opened in 2014.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, in the 2014 Infrastructure Plan, the Government has allocated K1.4 million to Lualuo Primary School, which will be used to build some facilities at that school, such as additional classrooms, an ablution block and three staff houses.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Kansembe: Mr Speaker, I commend the Government for that timely intervention. However, considering that the school will add Grade 11 classes next year, I think that the two 1 x 3 classrooms that are being constructed will not be adequate. Does the Government have plans to further expand the school so that it can become a fully-fledged secondary school?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, I agree with what the hon. Member has said. The six classrooms, three staff houses and an ablution block that I mentioned will be under Phase I of the construction. If money permits, we will put some additional classrooms or other facilities, probably next year.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, I am very sure that the school is among the 220 schools that will be upgraded to secondary school level. How many of the 220 schools have been funded for infrastructure development, since there is none in Chadiza?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, none of the 220 schools has received money for additional infrastructure. However, I am sure that, in the course of October, 2014, some of the schools will start receiving the money. We just received some funding from the Ministry of Finance.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mucheleka (Lubansenshi): Mr Speaker, the upgrading of schools in the rural areas, including Lualuo Primary in Lukashya Constituency, is like a mockery. Why were the schools allowed to open Grade 10 classes without laboratory facilities? What kind of a secondary school can open without laboratory facilities for the learners?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, all the 220 schools that we plan to upgrade, either towards the end of this year or early 2015, will have mobile laboratories. As I am speaking, some mobile laboratories are being assembled at our Science Centre in Kabulonga. So, I assure the hon. Members of Parliament that the ministry is aware of all these issues and is doing everything possible to make the schools become functional by providing them with the necessary facilities.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Lufuma: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister mentioned the 220 schools that are supposed to be upgraded. However, to date, no money has been allocated or released for the project. He also said that the money might be released by October, 2014. When does he expect the schools to be completed, since the year will end two months from October?

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, given that the money is being received now, although I am not an expert, the construction will probably start before the end of this year at some of the schools and the projects will be carried forward into 2015.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chipungu (Rufunsa): Mr Speaker, before the decision to upgrade schools in some districts was made, the ministry had gone round requesting for pieces of land on which it could construct secondary schools. The communities actually offered the pieces of land. In my constituency, a plot was given at Mphanshya Boarding School for a new school to be constructed. What will happen to that piece of land? Will it be constructed or not? The people in my constituency want to know. 

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, when it comes to requests, it depends on the circumstances prevailing. It could be that the Government had wanted to build a school under the contract mode, whereby it would just bring a contractor to start building. With regard to the schools we plan to upgrade, there are two options. We can expand existing structures, if the land permits or, if not, the community, through the DEBS, is free to identify alternative land on which to build new schools. That is what we are doing in my constituency. We have looked for alternative land because the land on which the school we are upgrading is is not big enough. Hon. Chipungu, if the land where the school we are upgrading in your constituency is is not enough, it is entirely up to the community to decide in collaboration with the DEBS where you want us to build the other school.

I thank you, Sir.


48. Mr Pande asked the Minister of Agriculture and Livestock when a new contractor would move on site to complete the construction of storage sheds in Kasempa Parliamentary Constituency, which were abandoned at the foundation level.

The Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Livestock (Mr Kazabu): Mr Speaker, most of the contracts awarded for the construction or upgrading of storage sheds countrywide were terminated in 2013 due to non-performance of contractors or their failure to keep to project time frames.


Mr Speaker: Order, on my left!

Mr Kazabu: Nevertheless, the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) has started upgrading twenty-seven of the ninety-eight slabs into complete sheds. This will be done in phases, with the first phase covering slabs on the Copperbelt, Eastern, Luapula, Muchinga, Northern and North-Western provinces. Phase II will cover thirty more slabs countrywide, including the two slabs that were abandoned at the slab level in Kasempa Parliamentary Constituency.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, when will Phase II start?

Mr Kazabu: Mr Speaker, Phase II will commence in 2015.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Chipungu: Mr Speaker, were the contractors whose contracts were terminated paid their dues?

Mr Kazabu: Mr Speaker, the contractors were paid for all the work they had done up to the point when they defaulted.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mtolo (Chipata Central): Mr Speaker, I think that this nature of procurement does not permit what the hon. Deputy Minister has said. If the contractor abandoned the site, they should actually have been charged using the performance bond. May the hon. Minister clarify what this is all about?

Mr Kazabu: Mr Speaker, this is a case of specific performance. The contractor did not perform, hence, the termination of the contract. Up to the point of default, what was due to them in accordance with the amount of work done is what we paid for. For the works that were not done, they did not get any payment. As to whether there should have been further action taken, that is something that I can follow up and come back with an appropriate response.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Ng’onga (Kaputa): Mr Speaker, are the twenty-seven slabs out of ninety-eight being upgraded simultaneously or has the project been phased?

Mr Kazabu: Mr Speaker, the twenty-seven sheds are, in fact, complete and ready for use. The hon. Members of this House may wish to know that the new sheds will give us an additional storage capacity of 117,000 metric tonnes.

I thank you, Mr Speaker. {mospagebreak}


49. Mr Ng’onga asked the Minister of Health:

(a)    when the X-Ray Department at Kaputa District Hospital would be operationalised; and

(b)    what had caused the delay in opening the department.

The Deputy Minister of Health (Dr Chilufya): Mr Speaker, the X-Ray Department at Kaputa District Hospital will be operational within sixty days. 

Sir, the cause of the delay in opening the department has been a lack of the dark room X-Ray film processor at the hospital. That equipment will be installed within sixty days.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.


50. Mr Sianga (Sesheke) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a)    when the construction of township roads in Sesheke Parliamentary Constituency would commence;

(b)    what the estimated time frame for the project was; and

(c)    what the estimated cost of the project was.

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr N. Banda): Mr Speaker, the tender for the construction of township roads in Sesheke Parliamentary Constituency was advertised in 2013, but no bidder met the technical criteria. The tender will be re-advertised by the end of October, 2014, and works will commence as soon as funds have been made available.

Sir, the estimated project time frame is twenty-four months from signing of the contract to completion. 

Sir, the project cost will only be known after the procurement process has been completed.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sianga: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister telling us that there are no credible Zambian or external contractors who could have been awarded the contracts?

Mr N. Banda: Mr Speaker, in my response to part (a) of the question, I indicated that all the contractors who had applied did not meet the technical criteria.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Shakafuswa (Katuba): Mr Speaker, if the tender was advertised and bids received, how come the hon. Minister is saying that the project will only be implemented when funds have been made available? When the tender was advertised, did it not mean that the funds were there? Where have those funds gone?

Mr N. Banda: Mr Speaker, the procurement procedure is that the release of funds is only done after the procurement process. My affirmation is that the project will take off after the completion of the procurement process and eventual release of funds.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mufalali (Senanga): Mr Speaker, why has it taken this long for the tender to be re-advertised?

Mr N. Banda: Mr Speaker, the procurement process is also segmented in time. So, the period that it has taken was necessitated by the procedures followed within the procurement process.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minster has said that, upon the availability of funds, the works would commence. Were the works budgeted for in the 2014 Budget or were they indefinitely planned for?

Mr N. Banda: Mr Speaker, although the procurement started in 2013, the project was budgeted for in 2014.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Antonio (Kaoma Central): Mr Speaker, has the programme taken off in any of the districts of the Western Province?

Mr N. Banda: Mr Speaker, yes, the project has taken off in Mongu in the Western Province.

I thank you, Sir.


51. Mr Antonio asked the Minister of Health when health centres would be constructed in the following areas in Kaoma Central Parliamentary Constituency:

(a)    Lombelombe;

(b)    Kangolongolo;

(c)    Katoya;

(d)    Kamuni; and

(e)    Mwiimba.

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, the Ministry of Health has planned to construct two health posts in Kaoma Central Parliamentary Constituency at Lombelombe and Maloba Chibuli, respectively, as part of the programme to build 650 health posts countrywide. The construction of additional facilities at Kangolongolo, Katoya, Kamuni and Mwiimba will only be considered after assessments have been done on the areas and the requisite funding sourced.

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Antonio: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Deputy Minister aware that the construction of the clinic at Maloba has stalled because of a lack of funds?

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, I am not aware.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister has answered that the construction of two clinics in Kaoma Central is under the project to construct 650 health posts countrywide. However, what I found in my constituency is that the ministry has engaged communities to dig foundations and pit latrines, and that the works are being supervised by the Ministry of Health. What happened to the Indian companies that were contracted to carry out the works?

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, the three Indian companies that were awarded contracts to build the 650 health posts were also allowed to sub-contract Zambian companies to lay the foundations and slabs. We do not interfere with what the contractor does and who he chooses to sub-contract. We are aware that the Indian companies have made arrangements with the sub-contractors to lay the foundations.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, could the hon. Minister confirm that Zambians are being used as tools in the contracts that our Government signed with the Indian Government. The Indian companies are using Zambian expertise under the conditions of their contracts. So, why were the contracts not awarded to Zambian companies to circumvent capital flight? I ask this because all the money the Indians are being paid is going back to India instead of benefitting Zambians.

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, I will not confirm what the hon. Member of Parliament for Monze Central is saying. We do not have evidence of that. All I am saying is that the contractors have been given leeway to sub-contract. We know that sub-contractors have been hired, but the arrangements between the contractors and sub-contractors are not what we are currently monitoring.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Speaker: I think that the question by the hon. Member for Mazabuka Central has not been properly understood. Could you repeat your question, Hon. Nkombo.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, for avoidance for doubt, not long ago − I hope that he is paying attention because he is busy …

Mr Speaker: Just continue.

Mr Nkombo: Hon. Chilufya and your Government, why did you allow the Indian Government, which gave us this commercial loan, to impose Indian companies on the contracts when we have sufficient expertise among Zambians to assemble prefabricated structures? We could have circumvented the capital flight that you are facilitating by paying the Indian nationals. If you had not done that, the money would have remained in this economy to benefit Zambians, who are black like you and I. That is my simple question.

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, the construction of the 650 health posts is being done through a credit line from India, and it was a pre-condition in the contract that Indian contractors be used.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chipungu: Mr Speaker, my question is in relation to Hon. Antonio’s question over the health centre whose construction has stalled in spite of the Government’s professed keenness to provide the best health services to citizens. Now that the hon. Minister is aware that the works at Maloba have stalled, what will he do to help the poor people of that area?

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, we are not aware that the works have stalled. We will investigate what the hon. Member of Parliament has said. For now, we do not have that report.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, in line with what …

Mr Lubinda: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

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

Sir, Zambia will, this year, celebrate her Golden Jubilee as an independent State that has worked very hard to unify its citizens beyond tribe, race, colour pigmentation of eye or hair, and religion. Is the hon. Member of Parliament representing the noble people of Mazabuka Central in order to reduce himself to a racist …

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!

Mr Lubinda: ... by asking the hon. Minister of Health why his Government and he did not ensure that the money from the Indian people was used to benefit Zambian citizens, whom he said are black like him and the hon. Minister, as though he is not aware of the fact that we have citizens with skin pigmentations that are different from his? 

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Hon. Opposition Members: Zayelo!

Mr Speaker: Order! 

I think that the hon. Member for Mazabuka Central, given the logic of his question and intendment, should have used the word ‘indigenous’ or/and ‘citizens’ without necessarily qualifying his referents by skin colour or pigmentation. I also think that he said that in the heat of the moment. So, in short, he was not in order.


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister stated that the three contractors have sub-contracted some Zambian companies, but I find that very confusing and seek clarification. Did the three contractors sub-contract other companies or the Ministry of Health? I ask this because, in Kalabo, it is the Ministry of Health that was supervising the clearing of the sites.

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, the Indian companies have sub-contracted Zambian companies. However, the project manager is still the Ministry of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication.

I thank you, Sir.


52. Mr Mushanga (Bwacha) asked the Minister of Agriculture and Livestock: 

(a)    how many dip tanks were constructed in Bwacha Parliamentary Constituency from 2012 to 2014;

(b)    in which areas the dip tanks were located;

(c)    what the total cost of constructing the dip tanks was; and

(d)    when the construction of Munyama and Kalonga dip tanks commenced, and when it was scheduled to end.

Mr Kazabu: Mr Speaker, only one dip tank was constructed in Bwacha Parliamentary Constituency between 2012 and 2014. 

Sir, the dip tank is located in Mukobeko area and is called Kabwe Mulonga Dip Tank. 

Mr Speaker, the construction of Kabwe Mulonga Dip Tank commenced in 2013 and was completed in early 2014. 

Sir, the cost of constructing Kabwe Mulonga Dip Tank was K100,000. 

Sir, there is no dip tank called Kalonga under construction while the Munyama Dip Tank project is currently at the tendering stage. Once all the modalities have been finalised, the actual construction will commence. The estimated cost for constructing the dip tank is K150,000.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mushanga: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Deputy Minister for his answer. However, I am surprised to hear him say that Kabwe Mulonga Dip Tank has been completed.

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1615 hours until 1630 hours.

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

Mr Mushanga: Mr Speaker, when business was suspended, I was in the process of asking my follow-up question on Question 52. 

Mr Speaker, I have just come back from my constituency and know that the dip tank in question …

Mr Nkombo: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, taking advantage of this point of order, which I believe to be very important, allow me to, firstly, put it on record that I regret my comment to the hon. Deputy Minister of Health, which had racial connotations. I will not repeat it. 

Sir, yesterday, I rose on a point of order regarding the attendance of Parliamentary proceedings by hon. Ministers and you responded that one hon. Deputy Minister of Home Affairs was representing the Chief Whip to ensure that Parliamentary business takes precedence over all other affairs. When I look around, the scenario is as it was yesterday. Only three hon. Ministers out of twenty are in their seats. Is the Government, therefore, in order to continue ignoring the counsel you gave yesterday and continue this laissez-faire attitude towards Parliamentary business? 

I seek your ruling, Sir. 

Mr Speaker: I really do not want to make a lengthy response on this subject because I did so yesterday. The only thing I can say is that I will take time to sit down with His Honour the Vice-President and see how we can normalise the situation. Certainly, what is happening is unacceptable.

That is my ruling.

Mr Mushanga: Mr Speaker, I have just come from the constituency and the dip tank that the hon. Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Livestock has talked about has actually not been completed. However, going along with the hon. Deputy Minister’s feedback to the effect that it has been completed, when will it be handed over to the community for use?

Mr Kazabu: Mr Speaker, the information we have from our officers on the ground is that the construction of the dip tank has been completed. However, if the hon. Member of Parliament for Bwacha has information indicating a contrary position, then, all I can say is that I will follow the matter up because we are in a hurry to commission the dip tank and hand it over to the community.

Thank you, Sir.


53. Brig-Gen. Dr Chituwo asked the Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education when the bursary given to Government-sponsored students in colleges and universities would be revised in view of the rise in the cost of living.

The Deputy Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education (Prof. Willombe):  Mr Speaker, the bursary given to Government-sponsored students in colleges and universities will be revised when funding to the Bursaries Committee improves. Despite the rise in the cost of living, the Government is unable to revise the bursary due to budgetary constraints and other competing national demands in the education sector.

I thank you, Sir.

Brig-Gen. Dr Chituwo: Mr Speaker, is it not ironical that the Patriotic Front (PF), in its campaigns and when it formed Government, continuously sang about being a pro-poor Government? If we are not able to revise the bursaries, whose purpose is to assist poor families, how, then, does that Government see itself as pro-poor? I need an answer.

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, the position is that, currently, the Bursaries Committee faces many challenges that stem from limitations in our budgetary expenditure. We even have challenges in meeting our obligation over those we currently support, many of whom are in the 75 per cent, 50 per cent and 25 per cent bracket. Recently, many who are on 75 per cent bursary have come forward to say that their guardians have passed away and the 25 per cent that they got from their parents was no longer available. They have, therefore, asked the committee to raise their bursary to 100 per cent. Further, the institutions of learning where our students are also arbitrarily create faculties and enrol additional students, thereby intensifying the pressure on the little funds made available to the Bursaries Committee. Even if we are pro-poor, in a situation like this, it is not possible to increase the bursary because every student below 100 per cent support requires an upgrade of their bursary when their guardians or providers die.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Ndalamei (Sikongo): Mr Speaker, will the Government extend the bursaries to students in private universities?

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, for now, only students in public institutions, that is, the Copperbelt University (CBU) and the University of Zambia (UNZA), will be given bursaries. Until our budgetary allocation improves, we cannot extend the bursaries to private universities.

Thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mucheleka: Mr Speaker, how does the hon. Minister reconcile the fact that the Government has embarked on the construction of public universities in various provinces with its failure to adequately cater for the existing ones like paying decent allowances to students? How will it provide for the universities under construction?

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, I get the feeling that the hon. Member thinks that Zambia is very poor and everybody is poor, but that is not the situation. Our economy is growing. We cannot remain static just because we cannot meet our current obligations 100 per cent. We currently support the CBU and UNZA, and the universities that we are creating will also get resources. We will come back to this House and ask for additional funds to extend our services to those institutions. As we create more jobs and more people become affluent, they will support their children in those institutions. We cannot depend on Government resources forever because we will, one day, reach a level where individuals will be able to support their own children in education.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Konga: Mr Speaker, …

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

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, even if you see me standing here, I am not myself. 


Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member for Chipili has moved all the way from there (pointing to the Government Bench) to come here and start threatening violence on me, …


Mr Mbewe: … an innocent man. He is indicating that he wants to cut my neck. 

Mr Speaker, is he in order to be where he is and threaten violence on me?


Mr Speaker: Well, I have been watching him since he migrated, but there have been no indication that your life is under threat.


Mr Konga: Mr Speaker, it has recently been reported in the public media that the University of Zambia (UNZA) is increasing enrolment to 10,000 students this year. With such an increment, but no corresponding increase in the budgetary allocation to the students, the ever-increasing cost of living in Lusaka and limited bed space at the university, how does one hope that the students will cope and study?

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, universities are autonomous institutions. The Government only provides policy advice and grants to help with the running of the institutions. If they expand their enrolment, they know the consequences.

Mr Speaker, a bursary is provided to help students who are unable to pay their tuition fees. The Government is not forced to provide additional funding for the extra students when an institution expands. If the University of Zambia (UNZA) has enrolled 10,000 students, it has a Council and Senate, which will know where to find support for its students. The Government will support only those faculties that it is able to fund. Currently, we support close to 3,000 first-year students at UNZA in addition to the returning ones. At the Copperbelt University (CBU), we support more than 2,000 students in addition to the returning ones. This is in relation to the money available to the Bursaries Committee to support bursaries ranging from 100, 75, 50 and 25 per cent. Like I said earlier, the challenges arise when some of our students on bursary lose their guardians and have to ask for more support. As they are already on our books, we cannot say that they should not continue with their education. So, we come back to Parliament to ask for more money, which is given to them in total. Therefore, if UNZA thinks that it can enrol more students and, then, push the Government to cover the cost, that is not the right way to go. The university should become self-sustaining. The Government only provides a complementary grant.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Namugala: Mr Speaker, sometimes, I feel very sad that the Patriotic Front (PF), which is now in Government, is singing the same song that the Movement for Multi-Party Democracy (MMD) sang during its tenure in office. 

Mr Speaker, when it was promising to reform the bursary system to cover more students, was the PF not aware that resourses are limited and restrictive in the Government? Can this hon. Minister tell me why he is now lamenting the same way the MMD did when, during its campaigns, his party promised that it would put more students on bursary?

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, we are not lamenting.

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!


Prof. Willombe: With the current structure of the Bursaries Committee, it is not possible to cover more students. So, we have to reform it. Currently, the Loans Board is in the offing and, when it becomes fully operational, all students who want to attain higher education will be able to borrow money from there, which they can refund after completing their studies and getting employed. For now, we do not have the legal framework to anchor such an arrangement. So, we are not lamenting, but saying that, as the Bursaries Committee exists today, it is in the same form in which you left it for us, and presents us with the same constraints, which we will continue to face until the Loans Board becomes fully operational.

Mr Speaker, the expansion of the universities is having an effect on the Bursaries Committee.

Hon. Opposition Member: You are lamenting.

Prof. Willombe: We are not lamenting. Give us more money.


Prof. Willombe: Give us more money and we will cover them.


Prof. Willombe: For as long as you do not give us more money, we will be unable to do that.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, what is happening nowadays is perplexing. It is surprising to hear an hon. Minister ask for money from the legislative wing of the Government. Does he have a plan to overcome this problem of insufficient budgetary allocation to the education sector, in general, and the Bursaries Committee, in particular? There are lessons that we have learnt from other countries, some of which have only recently emerged from war, such as Rwanda, which have made it clear that education, in the long run, improves a country’s economy and wellbeing. He should tell us what plans he has, instead of asking me, a Member of Parliament who is not in the Executive wing of the Government and is a rubber stamp to the Budget that the Executive prepares, to give him more money. What is the plan for overcoming this problem? In our country, in case the hon. Minister did not know, …

Mr Speaker: Hon. Member, I think that you have made your point. The question has been put.

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, yes, we have a plan, which is to reform the Bursaries Committee and, then, go forward. The Bill on the Loans Board was referred to the Ministry of Justice. Once it has been passed, we will reform the Bursaries Committee.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, as one of the beneficiaries of the bursaries system of this country, I would like to suggest something to the hon. Minister.

 Hon. Minister, I graduated from the University of Zambia (UNZA) twenty-five years ago, and most of us who graduated from the public universities are in gainful employment. So, can you not consider surcharging us even K100 per month so that the money goes to helping under-privileged students to access education?

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, could the hon. Member repeat his question?

Hon. Opposition Members: Aah!


Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, I am one of the beneficiaries of the bursary that is given to UNZA and graduated twenty-five years ago. My question was, in appreciation of what the Government has done for us, can the Government not get back to those of us who are willing to make a monthly contribution into a special fund to help financially challenged students? The fund can be independently managed and audited to prevent it from being taken to by-elections. Is the hon. Minister not willing to establish a secured fund to which graduates can individually contribute K100 per month? If there are 3,000 students on bursary annually, the number of beneficiaries rises to 75,000 in twenty-five years. If each of the 75,000 is surcharged K100 per month, the money collected could really help the hon. Minister. This is the United Party for National Development (UPND)’s proposal. Instead of waiting to come into Government and implement that idea, we are sharing it with you so that you can use it to help needy students.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, I commend the hon. Member for graduating twenty-five years ago. However, I graduated forty years ago.

Mr Speaker: That means more money for the fund.


Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, we will consider his suggestion. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr I. Banda (Lumezi): Mr Speaker, Mulungushi University is one of the public universities to which some of the poor students would like to go and study. Has the ministry considered putting some students at Mulungushi University on bursary?

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, the status of Mulungushi University is different from that of the CBU and UNZA in that it is supposed to charge economic fees and be independent of Government support. We have not been supporting it and will not start doing so.

I thank you, Sir.


54. Mr Sichula (Nakonde) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a)    which contractor had been awarded the tender to complete the water reticulation project in Nakonde;

(b)    when the works were expected to commence;

(c)    what the estimated cost of the project was; and

(d)    which areas would be supplied with water upon completion of the project.

Mr N. Banda: Mr Speaker, the tendering process of the project is still in progress and the bids are being evaluated.

Mr Speaker, the works are expected to commence as soon as the tender process has been completed.

Mr Speaker, the estimated cost of the project is K30 million. However, the actual cost of the project will only be known after the procurement process has been completed.

Mr Speaker, Katozi, Mukoma Site and Service, Riverside, Wulonga, Donald School, Ntindi and TAZARA are the areas to be supplied with water upon the completion of the project.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sichula: Mr Speaker, most of the people will now depend on rain water. What measures has the ministry taken to assist the community in the months before this project starts?

Mr N. Banda: Mr Speaker, the measure that the Government is taking is to expedite the process of this contract. Currently, the communities are depending on the existing meagre water supplied to the district.

I thank you, Sir.


55. Mr Mucheleka asked the Minister of Mines, Energy, and Water Development:

(a)    how many rural electrification projects were undertaken from January, 2012, to August, 2014, countrywide;

(b)    what the annual target for the project was; and 

(c)    if the projects undertaken were below target, what the reasons were.

The Deputy Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development (Mr Zulu): Mr Speaker, the projects undertaken by the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) from January, 2012, to August, 2014, countrywide were thirty grid extensions, and seventy-two classroom blocks, 228 staff houses, thirty-eight rural health centres and seventeen palaces provided with solar home systems.

Mr Speaker, the annual target is approximately forty projects.

Mr Speaker, the projects undertaken were below the target due to budgetary constraints.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mucheleka: Mr Speaker, I am aware that, due to haphazard planning, many schools have been upgraded into secondary schools when most of them in the rural areas do not have access to electricity. Is the ministry, through REA, able to collaborate with its counterpart, the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education, to come up with a plan for providing electricity to the schools that have been upgraded so that the quality of the education of our children is enhanced?

Mr Zulu: Mr Speaker, I do not understand what he means by “haphazard planning” in his sentence, but I agree with him that it is important that we engage other institutions or ministries, such as the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education, so that, maybe, they can also include allocations for rural electrification in their budgets. That is what we would love to see. However, currently, the mandate of REA is limited. Some schools and health centres are not connected because they do not have the funds to do the internal wiring and connections. Therefore, it is good that you have come up with that idea, Hon. Mucheleka, my brother, who is independent from the Opposition. I am independent from the Ruling Party.
I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mtolo: Mr Speaker, I would like the hon. Minister to guide me. The Rural Electrification Authority (REA) has a plan that expires in 2030 but, life being dynamic, there will be projects that are not in the plan that will need to be implemented. I have a problem in Chipata in an area called Jimoli Farming Block. Is there any room for REA to assist us even when we are not on the Rural Electrification Master Plan (REMP)?
Mr Zulu: Mr Speaker, I know the place he is talking about and, yes, there is room for the place to be electrified. However, I also want to mention that we have a report that covers all our projects up to 2014, which will be made available to all hon. Members of Parliament so that they are aware of what is going on. They will learn about the projects we have started and when we started them, and those that we have finished.

I thank you, Sir. 

Prof. Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, I would like the hon. Minister to clarify the policy position. 

Mr Speaker, the Rural Electrification Programme (REP) for schools targets five teachers’ houses per school. However, in schools that have more than five teachers’ houses, that has created some discontent and frustration among teachers whose houses have not being electrified. Why has this policy been adopted?

Mr Zulu: Mr Speaker, I concur with what Hon. Prof. Lungwangwa is saying. We are also concerned about that and, as such, are reviewing the electrification policy as I speak to you. By the end of the year, we will have a draft ready for endorsement. After that, we will go out and implement the new policy. It does not make business sense to connect four houses out of ten at the same school. How do you choose which to connect?

I thank you, Sir.


56. Mr Mwila asked the Minister of Information and Broadcasting:

(a)    how much money the Government owed the Times of Zambia Newspaper for placement of advertisements, as of September, 2014; and

(b)    when the outstanding debt would be cleared.

The Deputy Minister of Information and Broadcasting (Mr Njeulu): Mr Speaker, as of 9th September, 2014, the Government owed the Times of Zambia Newspaper K3,694,889.69 for placement of advertisement.

Mr Speaker, the Government has constituted a team comprising the Treasury and internal auditors to verify the debt owed to the Times of Zambia Newspaper. So far, K1,800,000 has been paid while the balance will be paid when the verification exercise has been completed. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Mwila: Mr Speaker, could the hon. Minister be specific on when the debt will be cleared because it has affected the company’s cash flow, resulting in its failure to pay its employees’ salaries. This is an embarrassment to the Government …

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwila: … and all of us here. 

Hon. Opposition Members: No!

Mr Livune: PF alone! 


Mr Mwila: Mr Speaker, can the hon. Minister be specific. When will the debt be cleared so that the employees can get paid?

The Minister of Information and Broadcasting (Dr Katema): Mr Speaker, it has been clearly stated that the remaining money will be paid to the Times of Zambia Newspaper as soon as it has been verified. The verification exercise is bound to be completed by the end of next month. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Mbulakulima (Chembe): Mr Speaker, taking advantage of this question on debts, can the hon. Minister clarify the allegations that Times Printpak Zambia Limited owes the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) a lot of money in unmet tax obligations? How much tax does Times Printpak Zambia Limited owe the ZRA? 

Dr Katema: Mr Speaker, how much tax Times Printpak Zambia Limited owes is a new question whose answer can be researched if it is put to this ministry.

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, we know that the Times of Zambia Newspaper has a huge debt, as a result of which the Managing Director is being asked to step down on the assumption that he is to blame. Does this Government pay upfront for the advertisements it places in the newspaper or it does so on credit?

Dr Katema: Mr Speaker, Times Printpak Zambia Limited, like any other public media institution, has a board and management in place. Therefore, the decision to provide a service on credit or cash basis lies squarely on the two. However, as the sole shareholder, we have advised and discouraged them from  giving services on credit, but on cash basis. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you. 

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, I ask a bonus answer from the hon. Minister. 

Hon. Minister, lately, there has been a tendency by Patriotic Front (PF) cadres to harass journalists in radio stations or anywhere they can be identified. Do you, having failed to say anything on the matter, support this barbaric behaviour and succumb to it? 

Mr Speaker: The problem, I have with that question is that it has gone completely away from the issue at hand, which is about the debt owed to the Times of Zambia, and I am only allowing supplementary questions to the principal Question. 

Hon. Member for Namwala, you may ask your follow-up question. 

Mr Lubinda: Totally redundant.

Mr Mbewe: Aah!

Ms Lubezhi: Mr Speaker, the hon. Deputy Minister has put the debt owed to the company at K3 million. The hon. Minister, however, said that payment will only be made after the figure has been verified. Is he telling us that the K3 million mentioned by the hon. Deputy Minister was not verified?

Dr Katema: Mr Speaker, I said that the verification process is ongoing. What has been verified has been paid off. I have also mentioned that the process of verification would be completed within a month or so and all the money would be paid off. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Dr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, how were the arrears accrued when this Government operates on a cash budget?

Dr Katema: Mr Speaker, the debts are historical, ... 


Dr Katema: … and Hon. Rev. Lieut-Gen. Shikapwasha might have contributed to them.

I thank you, Sir.  


Mr Speaker: I do not think that it is appropriate to refer to a particular person. It is not Hon.  Rev. Lieut-Gen. Shikapwasha’s debt. 


57. Mr I. Banda asked the Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development:

(a)    which company had been contracted to electrify Chasefu Parliamentary Constituency under the Rural Electrification Master Plan (REMP);

(b)    what had caused the delay in implementing the project;

(c)    when the project would be completed; and

(d)    which growth centres would be electrified.

Zulu: Mr Speaker, Energya Power and Telecoms Solutions of Egypt is the contractor implementing the electrification project in Chasefu Parliamentary Constituency.

Sir, the delay in the project is attributable to challenges that were faced by the contractor in procuring poles. However, the contractor has since procured the wooden poles and other materials. 

Mr Speaker, the project will be completed in December, 2014. 

Sir, the following areas in Chasefu Growth Centre will be electrified:

(a)    Tigone Community;

(b)    Duda Compound;

(c)    Chamafete School;

(d)    Hoya School and clinic;

(e)    Eluhangeni School;

(f)    Kawiwo School and Market;

(g)    Kanyanga Mission; and

(h)    Emusa High School.

Mr Speaker, I thank you. 

Mr Sikazwe: Tumbuka territory. 

Mr I. Banda: Mr Speaker, will the Government consider extending this project to the Chief’s Palace, which is less than 5 km away from the Emusa Growth Centre?

Mr Zulu: Mr Speaker, the mandate of REA is to connect all public institutions, including chiefs’ palaces. So, we will also consider that palace.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Shakafuswa: Mr Speaker, there are growth centres that have been identified and hon. Members may want to pay a certain amount from the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) to help the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) and the Ministry of Mines, Energy and Water Development to expedite the electrification of the areas. Would the ministry welcome such initiatives and give priority to such projects?

Mr Zulu: Mr Speaker, that is a brilliant idea that we would consider. We encourage hon. Members of Parliament to use part of their Constituency Development Fund (CDF) even to do the internal wiring of schools and clinics. 

I thank you, Sir. 


58. Dr Kaingu asked the Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education whether the Government had any plans to turn Masese Centre in Loanja Ward in Mwandi Parliamentary Constituency into a trades training school, considering that the centre already had some Government buildings. 

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, the Government does not have any immediate plan to turn Masese Centre in Loanja Ward in Mwandi Parliamentary Constituency into a trades training school. The centre in question belongs to the departments of Veterinary Services and Forestry, respectively, under the ministries of Agriculture and Livestock, and Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection, respectively, not the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education, under which trades training institutions fall. Turning the centre into a trades training school would require its ownership to be transferred to the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education. Currently, the centre is not under any discussion for conversion into a trades school, although the Government is considering establishing trades training institutes in every district in the future.

I thank you, Sir. 

Dr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, I am not surprised that this Government has got no plan. The hon. Minister stated that, that centre belongs to two ministries that belong to the same Government. So, what is difficult about discussing this with his colleagues so that he is given the authority to develop that centre into a trades training institute, considering that there are many pupils who drop out after Grade 12 because they have nowhere to go?

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, we have a plan to construct trades training institutes in all the districts of this country, but not in the manner this one is being presented. When resources are available, we can consider that. Otherwise, currently, we are following our own plan based on our budget. 

I thank you, Sir.  

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, the idea being pushed by the hon. Member for Mwandi is good because the infrastructure is already there. Instead of waiting for the future, seeing as we do not know whether there will be funding for that, why does the hon. Minister not try the idea? Why does this idea not appeal to him?

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, tree-jumping is not what the plan demands. We should not jump from our tree just because there is another fruit in another tree.


Mr Mbewe: On a point of order, Sir.


Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, as I mentioned earlier, we have a plan for infrastructure development that we are following. When the time comes for Mwandi, we will take cognisance of the structures that have been mentioned.

I thank you, Sir. 

Prof. Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, we already have precedence …

Mr Mbewe: On a point of order, Sir. 

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised. 

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, the hon. Professor and Deputy Minister says that he is not in a position to jump from one tree to another, yet his delicacy likes doing that.


Mr Mbewe: Is he in order to misinform the House that such things do not happen where he comes from? 

I need your serious ruling.

Mr Speaker: Well, I will give him an opportunity to clarify that point. 

Hon. Prof. Lungwangwa, please, continue.


Prof. Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, we already have policy precedence in the country. Is it Robert Makasa University that was formally Mulakupikwa?

Hon. Opposition Members: Yes.

Prof. Lungwangwa: Mulakupikwa was a dilapidated college under the Ministry of Home Affairs. Later, there were discussions that led to its being turned into a university college.

Sir, in one of your reports for this year, it was mentioned to the House that Masese Centre is dilapidated, with only one officer and several unused buildings. 

Mr Kampyongo: On a point of order, Sir. 

Mr Speaker: Let him finish. 

Prof. Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, this is an opportunity for the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education to pick up the idea and establish a trades trading centre. Can the ministry take a leaf from Robert Makasa University, which was formally Mulakuipkwa, and of which the Government is very proud. The parent ministries could be asked to hand the centre over to the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education for it to establish a trades training centre. Can that not be done?

Prof. Willombe: Mr Speaker, to clarify the position on the statement by my cousin, that we jump from tree to tree where we come from, it is the meat that does the jumping, not me. 


Prof. Willombe: Sir, as presented, the idea is alright and we are not at variance with it. The point I was trying to stress is that, when climbing a fruit tree, it would be folly for me to jump to another tree for a fruit that I may not even reach.


Prof. Willombe: Sir, when the time comes for Mwandi, we will consider the options. Currently, we have a plan in motion that we are following. When we have implemented that plan, we will come to other plans that we are currently developing. 

I thank you, Sir.


59. Mr Chabala (Kankoyo) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a)    when the books of accounts for Mufulira Municipal Council were last audited; and

(b)    what the findings were.

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, the books of accounts for Mufulira Municipal Council were last audited in 2013 for the Annual Financial Statements for the year ended 31st December, 2012, as provided for in Regulation 22 (c) of the Local Authority (Financial) Regulation No. 125 of 1992.

Sir, the accounts were qualified due to some accounting procedures and policies that were not followed in the preparation of the accounts.

I thank you, Mr Speaker. 

Mr Mufalali: Mr Speaker, how long does the Ministry of Local Government and Housing take to punish officers who are found guilty in an audit query?

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, the procedure is that, after the audit has been done, a report is submitted to the hon. Minister. Thereafter, it is sent to the local authority for verification. After that, action is taken. Let me just say that it depends on how quickly the reports are submitted. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Sing’ombe (Dundumwezi): Mr Speaker, can the transfer of erring officers be used as punishment? I ask this question because that is what is happening in the Ministry of Local Government and Housing.

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, it is not the policy of the ministry to transfer erring officers from one district to another because that is like transferring problems from one district to another, which is never the motive of transfers.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


60. Mr Phiri asked the Minister of Health why St Francis Mission Hospital and Chipata General Hospital received different amounts of grants, yet the two were at the same level.

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, St. Francis Mission Hospital is not a Government institution, but a grant-aided church hospital. The Government’s contribution is guided by a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Churches Association of Zambia (CHAZ) and the Government. Chipata General Hospital, on the other hand, is a Government hospital that is fully dependent on Government funding. That explains the difference.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Phiri: Mr Speaker, given the fact that St. Francis Mission Hospital has recently been struggling to pay its workers, as evidenced by its recent laying off of some workers, and that it attends to more patients compared to Chipata General Hospital, do you not think it is prudent to build a district hospital in Katete District so that it can decongest St. Francis Mission Hospital and get the same funding as Chipata General Hospital?

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, the construction of new district hospitals is in our capital investment plan and Katete will certainly be considered in due course. However, we do not have immediate plans to do that. On the aspect of funding, I will reiterate that our contribution to St. Francis Mission Hospital is dependent on what we agree with CHAZ when we sign the MoU. So, if there are challenges, we will sit down around a table and consider the available options. We will decide the kind of help the hospital will need.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}


61. Mr Mushanga asked the Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education:

(a)    what additional structures would be constructed at the newly-upgraded Danford Chirwa Secondary School in Bwacha Parliamentary Constituency:

(b)    when the construction of additional infrastructure would commence;

(c)    what the time frame for the construction was; and

(d)    what the cost of the additional structures was.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, specialised structures, such as Home Economics laboratories, classrooms and ablutions, will be constructed in the next phase at Danford Chirwa Secondary School. The construction will commence when the ministry makes a decision on the next phase of the schools that will be upgraded. 

Sir, in terms of the time frame, the additional structures are expected to be completed six months after the commencement of construction.

Mr Speaker, the cost of additional infrastructure will only be ascertained when a decision about the kind of buildings to be constructed has been made, and their prioritisation done.

I thank you, Sir.


62. Mr Mutale (Kwacha) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a)    when boreholes would be drilled in Chatente Ward of Kwacha Parliamentary Constituency;

(b)    how many boreholes were earmarked to be drilled in 2014 and 2015;

(c)    what the estimated cost of the project was; and

(d)    when the project would commence. 

Mr Tembo: Mr Speaker, the Government has provided for the sinking of boreholes in Chatente Ward in 2015. My ministry had planned to drill ten boreholes in the rural parts of Kitwe in 2015, some of which will be sunk in Chatente Ward. 

Sir, the project is estimated to cost K350,000. 

Mr Speaker, the project will commence in 2015, after the approval of the 2015 Budget.

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Mutale: Mr Speaker, will the ten boreholes allocated to Kitwe District be adequate to cover Chatente area and other constituencies in the district, bearing in mind that Chatente is a peri-urban or rural area like Shang’ombo. 

Mr Kufuna: Mr Speaker, the ten boreholes will be allocated to the rural parts of Kitwe, not the urban parts. Therefore, Chatente also has a chance of getting some boreholes from the ten.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mpundu: Mr Speaker, could the hon. Minister address himself specifically to the question, which is: How many boreholes will be drilled in Chatente Ward?

Mr Kufuna: Mr Speaker, as a ministry, we allocate boreholes to the district. The district, then, decides where the boreholes are most needed.

I thank you, Sir.


63. Mr Miyutu asked the Minister of Community Development, Mother and Child Health:

(a)    whether the Government had any plans to start taking care of the aged people in the villages of Kalabo District;    

(b)    whether the Government had any plans to extend the Social Cash Transfer Scheme to the aged and vulnerable people of Kalabo District: and

(c)    if so, when the exercise would commence.

Ms Kazunga: Mr Speaker, it has always been the Government’s responsibility to take care of the aged. To that effect, the Government has a number of programmes that take care of the aged, including the Public Welfare Assistance Scheme, Social Cash Transfer Scheme (SCTS) and the Care for the Aged Programme through institutional homes.

Sir, the SCTS is already being implemented in Kalabo District and some of its beneficiaries are the aged because the Government is implementing an inclusive model of the programme.

Mr Speaker, for Kalabo District, the ministry began implementing the SCTS in 2010 and, currently, 9,325 households are benefitting from the scheme, among them, 320 households headed by the aged, namely, 272 aged females and forty-eight aged males. The beneficiaries receive K140 bi-monthly, which they use to acquire basic necessities according to their needs and choices.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, …

Mr Sing’ombe: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Sing’ombe: Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to rise on a very serious point of order. 

Sir, Zambia is a Christian nation. Therefore, those in the Government should assist the citizens to live Christian lives. Is the Ministry of Tourism and Art, therefore, in order to schedule a programme for Saturday, 20th September, 2014, a day when thousands of Zambians are supposed to go to church to worship God? 

I need your serious ruling.

Mr Speaker: I wish the hon. Member for Dundumwezi was more specific about what this point of order is all about. Firstly, I must confess that I am not sure about the programme he has referred to. Secondly, he has not explained to me how he is being prohibited from exercising his right to follow his religion and conscience, which is guaranteed under Article 19 of the Constitution. He has not furnished me with those particulars. Therefore, I cannot make any meaningful determination of what the grievance is all about. 

That is my ruling.

May the hon. Member for Kalabo Central continue.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, the Government is responsible for caring for the aged and any other person in this country. However, my worry is on the type of care that it provides. Why is it that the Government provides things like tablets of soap and 250g of salt to the aged, instead of providing housing, since some of them do not have relatives to stay with?

Ms Kazunga: Mr Speaker, as I had earlier said, under our ministry, we have the Public Welfare Assistance programme that the aged can access. We have institutional homes in which the aged can be cared for and be given all the things they need.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


64. Mr Mwila asked the Minister of Community Development, Mother and Child Health:

(a)    how much money had been spent on the expansion of the Mukabi and Luminu farming blocks for people living with disabilities;

(b)    what plans the Government had on the utilisation of the two farming blocks; and

(c)    why the Government had neglected the two farming blocks.

Ms Kazunga: Mr Speaker, no money has been spent on the Mukabi and Luminu farming blocks. The Zambia Agency for Persons with Disabilities (ZAPD) has sixteen farming centres and one production centre. Hence, the revamping of the farming centres being done in a phased manner, and efforts were concentrated on some of the farming centres based on their viability and productivity levels. The recapitalisation works at Mukabi and Luminu centres will be undertaken during the remaining months of 2014 and through to next year.

Sir, starting October, 2014, the Government plans to use land for farming of crops, such as maize, and animal husbandry, including the rearing of goats, sheep and cattle.

Mr Speaker, the revamping of the farm is being done in phases. The Government has, since January, 2014, increased the grant to ZAPD to ensure that resources are channelled towards the recapitalisation of the farming centres, including the two farming blocks, Mukabi and Luminu.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mwila: Mr Speaker, I do not know whether the hon. Deputy Minister has visited the two farming blocks. Are you aware that all the people with disabilities who have been working on the farming blocks have been retrenched? Is she also aware that, as a result, people have been rising against me, as area Member of Parliament, and I have no answers to their questions? What plans does she have for the people at the two farms that I can go and tell them about?

Ms Kazunga: Mr Speaker, the retrenchment of the farm workers was done to make the farms financially viable. The people we had employed were supposed to undertake financially viable projects, but that was not done. Instead, they spent their time going to city markets and strategic locations in town centres to beg. So, running the farming blocks became a drain on the ministry’s coffers, which needed to pay the workers their salaries. The farms were neglected by those people. So, the ministry has decided that, from October, 2014, it will start using the land for crop and wetland farming.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Muchima (Ikeleng’i): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has indicated that there is a need to recapitalise the farms for the disabled. She has also indicated that the disabled people are supposed to be productive in their own way. I am at a loss because, first and foremost, I do not know how much money the ministry has set aside to recapitalise the farms spread all over the country. Secondly, how do you expect a disabled person to be productive without the assistance of an able-bodied person?

Ms Kazunga: Mr Speaker, if the disabled hear the hon. Member say that they cannot do anything, he will be in trouble.


Ms Kazunga: These days, we do not even refer to them as being ‘disabled’ because they say that they can do everything that an able-bodied person does. When they apply themselves, it will shock you how much work they can do. They can even farm more than an able-bodied person. Even on the establishment, there are able-bodied people who do certain jobs. On the issue of money, I may miss one or two figures. So, I would rather it came in as a new question.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Hamudulu: Mr Speaker, could the hon. Minister clarify whether the farms collapsed because of the failure by the disabled to apply themselves to work or was there not enough money?

Ms Kazunga: Mr Speaker, as I said earlier, the farms were neglected by the disabled, themselves. There were enough incentives for them to carry on with the projects. So, they were retrenched because there was no use of keeping them on the establishment.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sing’ombe: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister indicated that some of the people on the farms were retrenched. Were they paid their terminal benefits?

Ms Kazunga: Mr Speaker, there was a complaint that what they were given was not enough. So, we listened and ZAPD is working to give them full pay-outs. Currently, their other payments are still being worked on so that they can be fully paid. 

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister stated that some people were retrenched because they did not work, not because there were no resources. The Government is now recapitalising the farms. So, who will occupy those farms after they have been recapitalised? Will it be the same disabled people or another category of people?

Ms Kazunga: Mr Speaker, ZAPD is the organisation mandated to employ disabled people. From the information that I have, it is not all the disabled people who have been retrenched on the farms. Some remained working. However, if there is a need to employ more, the positions will be advertised so that other disabled people can apply.

I thank you, Sir.


65. Mr Mpundu asked the Minister of Health when the construction of Nchelenge District Hospital would commence.

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, the construction of infrastructure, including first-level hospitals, remains a key priority in our National Health Policy. However, due to limited resources, priority will be given to areas without any first-level hospital services at all. The construction of Nchelenge District Hospital is part of our Capital Investment Plan, but there is yet no specific date set for the commencement of the project.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mpundu: Mr Speaker, if my memory serves me right, according to the Ministry of Health, the construction of a district hospital in Nchelenge was supposed to commence this year. So, why has the ministry shifted its position?

Dr Chilufya: Mr Speaker, there is no change in our plans. All we are saying is that we have not set a date yet because funds are not yet available.

I thank you, Sir.




(Debate resumed)

Mr Speaker: When business was suspended yesterday, 24th September, 2014, the House was considering the Motion moved by the Hon. Member for Chipili, That the Thanks of this Assembly be Recorded for the Exposition of Public Policy Contained in the President’s Address. 

Any further debate?

Mr Mbulakulima (Chembe): Mr Speaker, I thank you for allowing me this rare opportunity to debate the President’s Speech. I think, my first point of call is to congratulate the five new hon. Members of Parliament who made their way to this House. I am aware, having gone through the same process, that it is not an easy thing. Allow me also to just extend special congratulations to the powerful lady of Kasenengwa. She merits my special recognition and congratulations.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, I think that, as the House and nation, we need intelligent people. It is for that reason that I also look forward with anticipation to the day the powerful lady of Petauke, Ms Dora Siliya, will come back to this House.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, as the House, we should look forward to having intelligent people in here. Personally, I do not mind being around people who may be very strong-willed as long as they are intelligent and can contribute to the wellbeing of the country. I have heard many people say that we did not need Hon. Mulusa here. We need people like Mulusa to be in the House, and I do not mean to take anything away from my brother who won the seat.

Mr Speaker, I also want to place it on record that I think that we need to congratulate ourselves, as hon. Members of Parliament, on the manner in which we behaved on that Friday when the President came to address this House. I want to echo the observation by The Post Newspaper that our behaviour was exemplary. I believe that our behaviour was out of the realisation that all of us are human and go through difficult times. It was not a sign of weakness on our part, but the humane thing to do. It was important that we behaved in the most civilised way possible as Zambians.

Mr Speaker, the other point that I want to make, before I come to the substantive matter that has forced me to take the Floor, although I know that many people do not agree with what we say here, is that − I remember the days of Hon. Shamenda as President of the Zambia Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), as we were going to the Joint Negotiating Council (JNC) meetings, he would say, “Balumendo, a unionist must behave like a unionist”. Balumendo means ‘gentlemen’. Indeed, I have realised that it is wrong for a unionist to behave like a manager and vice versa.

Mr Speaker, when I got in touch with my constituents, I asked them what they thought of the President’s Speech and I want to express their views to this House. Most of them believe that the Speech by the President fell short of their expectations. 

Sir, the people of Chembe and Milenge in Luapula Province expected the President to have gone beyond what he said. From that angle, I want to point out some of the salient issues that they picked out. One of them is the President’s remarks on the media. On page 41, …

Mr Speaker: Which volume?

Mr Mbulakulima: Volume II, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker: Of course, Volume II.

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, the President said:

“The role of the media in fostering development cannot be over-emphasised.” 

Mr Speaker, yes, indeed, that statement is true. However, the people of Milenge are asking whether the Patriotic Front (PF) Government is walking its talk. They were disappointed that the private media was barred from attending the Official Opening of Parliament, which is an important function. The President also mentioned that: 

“Our people need to be well-informed for them to meaningfully participate in national affairs. The media also serves as a platform for citizens to express themselves freely. The Government has, since 2011, issued a total of ten radio licences and five television licences …”

Mr Speaker, the media plays a critical role in national affairs. That is why it is called the fourth estate. Therefore, for the Government to bar the private media from attending such an important occasion is to deprive the people of their rights and freedoms. So, really, this is a contradiction. I want to believe that, from 1964 when we got our Independence, this is the first time that we have witnessed such a thing. The Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) Government liberalised the media industry and the people started enjoying that. So, we must allow the people of Zambia the ability to see important events on other media platforms, not only the public media. 

Mr Speaker, the people of Milenge believe that the Government is not walking its talk and they are extremely disappointed.

Mr Speaker, further, on the same page, the President’s Speech reads:

“Government is also committed to the promotion of a free media. In this regard, the Access to Information Bill will be tabled at an appropriate time.” 

In Milenge, we have heard this several times and thought that the Government, through the President, would give us a clear roadmap on this matter. How many times have we asked His Honour the Vice-President questions on the Freedom of Information Bill? I recall personally asking questions on the Floor of this House regarding this matter twice. In the first instance, His Honour the Vice-President said that Cabinet was still discussing the issue. The other time, he said it would be presented in the next sitting, but here we are and nothing has happened.  How can the President still come to this House and just leave us hanging on such an important issue? We see no hope in what the President said with regard to the media.

Mr Speaker, the other point that the people of Milenge picked out is about the Constitution. I refer you to Page 44 of the second volume of the President’s Speech. The President had this to say:

“Government embarked on a review of our legal and justice system, beginning with the Constitution. Government has received the Draft Constitution and is in the process of guiding the nation on the next course of action. 

“Mr Speaker, in our effort to ensure that the legal and justice system remains current and responsive to the needs of our country and its people, Government has put in place a Legal and Justice Reform Commission.”

Mr Speaker, I got very interested when the President said that the reforms would begin with the Constitution. However, what we are seeing is that the Constitution is not in place. So, definitely, this is a contradiction by the Head of State. Secondly, the people of Chembe and I are asking: What should come first between the Constitution and the Legal and Justice Reform Committee? In Milenge, we believe that the Legal and Justice Reform Committee should be anchored on the Constitution, contrary to what we are seeing today, whereby the committee was formed under the old law, which will not help the country. We believe that, actually, the Government wants to just divert the attention of Zambians from the issue of the Constitution to the committee.

Mr Mtolo: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: The President said that the Government had received the Draft Constitution and was in the process of “‘guiding’ the nation on the next course of action”. ‘Guiding’? The Government’s role must be to ‘facilitate’. When the President talks like this, the process ceases to be a people-driven one.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: The Government should only facilitate, not what we are being told; that it will guide. That means that the document will cease to be a public one. 

Further, Mr Speaker, one cannot create a law without the Constitutional framework. So, the Legal and Justice Reform Committee is depending on the old law. The people of Chembe feel that this process falls short of their expectations. 

The Government is now saying that it has received the Constitution. Mr Speaker, you may recall that …


Mr Speaker: Order, on the right!

Mr Mbulakulima: … the PF Government promised to give Zambians a new Constitution within ninety days. If you recall, the confusion started two years ago.


Mr Speaker: Can we have order at the back on my right!

Hon. Member for Chembe, you may continue.

Mr Mbulakulima: If you recall, Mr Speaker, the Draft Constitution was handed over to the Government on 31st December, 2013. In March, 2014, the then Minister of Justice acknowledged being in receipt of the document. I do not want to talk about how the postponement or extension came about and the haggling. However, from the time the draft Constitution was received and acknowledged, how many months have passed? For the President to come here and say, “We have received”, in the present perfect tense, as if the document had just been received within that week, is misleading because the document has been with the Government for a long time. So, what hope does that give to the people of Zambia?

Mr Mtolo: None. No hope. 

Mr Mbulakulima: That document is important, and we expected the President to have given us the roadmap for its enactment. The creation of a referendum committee should have been clearly spelt out. I see that most of the Opposition political parties and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) seem to hope that the sacking of the former Minister of Justice will change things. I do not. Yes, I must admit that the former Minister of Justice was not a friend of the Opposition and I sincerely hope that he will now be able to reflect on that because we are party to the development process of this country and always mean well.

Mr Speaker, I do not agree that we, as a nation, should heap the blame on an individual as if he was the alpha and omega.

Mr Mtolo: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: It would be naïve for us to believe that we could not make progress because of one man. Mr Speaker, I think you will allow me to say this, being a sportsman, that, in football, one does not follow the body movement, but keeps the eyes on the ball.

Mr Nkombo: Ba Zambia!

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, for us, it was not about Hon. Kabimba at all, but about the Constitution, and that is what our eyes are set on.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mtolo: Naikonda iyo!

Mr Mbulakulima: Hon. Lungu, to me, seems to be saying that there will now be progress, but I disagree because this is also not about him. He could be a good person, but he has been around. If the President did not give us the roadmap, how will Hon. Lungu do it? For me, this is deception. We have only two years to go under the PF Government. So, when will we enact this important document? This was another opportunity lost and it is from that angle that the people of Milenge and Chembe believe that they have been dribbled.

Mr Speaker, allow me to move on to another issue because I have clarified that we, in Milenge, wanted to see whether the Government was walking its talk. On the issue of the Constitution, the Government has not been walking its talk, literally.

Mr Speaker, allow me to talk about agriculture, which is on Page 15 of Volume II of the President’s Speech. 

Mr Speaker, the President says:

“Agriculture remains a key driver of economic growth and poverty reduction. Government’s strategic focus in the agriculture sector is to achieve food security, promote crop diversification as well as increased productivity and value addition …”. 

In Milenge and Chembe, we believe that this Government is not walking its talk on this matter, too. Yes, agriculture remains a key driver but, for us, this sector has been a disaster. However, probably, you will agree with me that it is the first time that there has not been any statement about pro-poor policies in this booklet. It has disappeared because the PF has realised that it is not pro-poor.

Mr Mwanza: It is not.

Mr Shamenda: We are.

Mr Mwanza: Hon. Shamenda, you are not.

Mr Mbulakulima: Sir, the distribution of inputs has been in disarray. What we see, every day, from the Government is propaganda. What has made the PF survive to this stage is propaganda.

Mr Mwanza: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, the number of bags of fertiliser has not increased, contrary to what was promised. We expected the President to spell out a new direction in the agricultural sector. Today, as I speak to you, there are people from Senior Chief Milambo in Mansa, …

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

Mr Mbulakulima: … who supplied maize to the Food Reserve Agency (FRA), but have not been paid for four months now. They have been waiting in vain. 

Sir, the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Livestock is on record saying, on the Floor of this House, that the price of mealie meal would come down following last farming season’s bumper harvest. Has it come down?

Hon. Opposition Members: No!

Mr Nkombo: And it will never.

Mr Mbulakulima: Sir, in the abundance of water, a fool is thirsty. Why is the price of mealie meal so high when we had a bumper harvest?

Mr Nkombo: It is a joke.

Mr Mbulakulima: It is pointless. We have been talking about the economic growth rate. On paper, it is there, but does it trickle down to the people of Zambia? Why has the PF Government failed, even in the presence of abundant maize, to lower the prices of mealie meal? I believe, and any reasonable person will agree with me that − Although we are blamed that we are always too advisory in our debate − it is important that we to put it on record. As long as you continue with this kind of approach to agriculture, you can be assured that there will be no votes from the Southern and Eastern provinces where people depend on agriculture. 

Mr Mtolo: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: You may get some from Luapula but, in other areas, I can assure you that you will continue failing ...

Mr Mwanza: Even Luapula reflects.

Mr Mbulakulima: … unless you change. 

Mr Speaker, …

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1815 hours to 1830 hours


    [MR SPEAKER in the Chair]    
Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Speaker, before business was suspended, I was about to wind up my debate by talking about energy, which is discussed on Page 35 of the President’s Speech. 

Mr Speaker, the people of Milenge believe that the Government is not walking the talk because there is nothing for them in the energy sector. 

Mr Speaker, I have also looked at the local government sector, but there is nothing for the people of Milenge there, too. We also believe that street vending is a time bomb that the President should have tackled. 

Mr Speaker, Milenge has also not been catered for in terms of infrastructure development. It is from this angle that the people of Milenge believe that this Government’s policy direction leaves much to be desired. The Government is not able to walk the talk, and we are extremely disappointed. 

Mr Speaker, our sincere hope is that, when the MMD comes back into power, …

Hon. Government Members: Question!

Mr Mwila: Iyee, ba Mbulakulima, MMD ukubwela?


Mr Mbulakulima: … it will correct all these anomalies. I can assure you …


Mr Speaker: Order!

Mr Mbulakulima: … that it is only a matter time before the MMD gets back into power.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mooya (Moomba): Mr Speaker, first of all, let me congratulate the newly-elected hon. Members of Parliament. In doing so, let me commend, especially, my neighbour, who won the Solwezi Central Seat. I describe him as a giant killer. He is very welcome.

Mr Speaker, I would like to make a few comments on the President’s Speech. The first issue is the transfer of the functions of the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) Unit from the Ministry of Finance to the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry. It is reported that the PPP Unit will be merged with the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) in order to develop infrastructure. I am not happy with this approach because, as we know, the PPP Unit has many challenges. Therefore, if we put all our hope in this method, I cannot see how we will develop the massive infrastructure that is planned. The PPP Unit has problems and, to transfer those problems to the ZDA, which could have its own problems, could end up creating a Zambian Frankenstein. For those who watched films in the past, Frankenstein was a very huge fellow who was so powerful that he could go through any object. He could walk through a building like this one. That is what I am likening the transfer of the problems of the PPP Unit to the ZDA to. 

Mr Speaker, your Committee on Transport, Works Supply and Communications listed the challenges, which are many. 

With your permission, Mr Speaker, let me refer to the Action-Taken Report, although it has not yet been discussed. Let me just mention that I read it last night and the Government acknowledges the problems, and I see why this was mentioned. I think that it was supposed to be put aside so that you solve all the problems. The challenges should be addressed before transferring and merging the two institutions. 

Mr Speaker, some of the challenges, if I may mention just two or three, which are related to the PPP Unit are inadequate experience in the Government to undertake PPP projects, the lack of clear guidelines and regulations to guide contracting authorities and the private sector in the implementation of the PPPs, and political interference in the selection of partnerships. 

Mr Speaker, when your Committee considered the PPP Unit, it heard from the witnesses interviewed from the private sector that many of them were not aware of the transfer, which has already been effected. I think that this silent transfer should wait. Maybe, this is why it is silent. It is to allow us to solve all the problems. An example is the termination of PPP contracts, some of which we all know, such as the Kasumbalesa Border, Zambian Railways and Longacres Re-Development. What I am trying to say is that the President should have given guidelines on how to solve these problems before transferring the PPP Unit.

Hon. UPND Member: Hear, hear!
Mr Mooya: Mr Speaker, let me come to the issue of the housing deficit. 

Sir, the President mentioned that the Government intends to solve this problem in two ways, namely, the recapitalisation of the Zambia National Building Society (ZNBS) with an equity contribution of K165 million, and working with the private sector through the PPPs. However, as I mentioned earlier, we have problems with the PPPs. 

Mr Speaker, four days ago, I read in the Zambia Daily Mail of Friday, 19th September, 2014, on Page 7, that, of the K165 million given to the ZNBS, only K38 million has been used, to date. 

Mr Speaker, we have a huge housing deficit. In 1996, the deficit was at 840,000 units. Today, it is 3 million. So, with the two methods mentioned, I do not see how we will reduce the deficit. It is impossible. Additionally, this is my third term in this House and I have heard three Presidents talk about the same issue. Each year, when Parliament is officially opened, the housing deficit is mentioned, but no solutions are given. That is my worry. We need serious political will here. Maybe, there is one hope remaining, and that is the United Party for National Development (UPND). 

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mooya: Mr Speaker, I think that we will tackle this issue seriously.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mooya: Mr Speaker, the housing deficit is a mountain that will take us a number of years to surmount because it is getting bigger every year without any solution in sight.

Mr Speaker, in the energy sector, there are plans to build more electricity-related infrastructure. My main worry on this aspect is the lack of maintenance of the infrastructure already in place. It is the same problem we have even in the road sector. I think that we have to be serious when we discuss some of these sectors. I have in mind the Kariba Dam wall, which is about to collapse. We have to spend about … 
Mr Muntanga: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: Order!

Hon. Muntanga, you may not have been present yesterday when I made this guidance. So, I will repeat that I want these debates to be uninterrupted. 

Mr Mushanga: He was not there.

Mr Muntanga: I was here.    


Mr Speaker: You may continue, Hon. Mooya.

Mr Mooya: Mr Speaker, l was talking about the lack of maintenance and was giving the example of the Kariba Dam wall, which is about to collapse. The wall was constructed in 1958 with a 143-year life span, meaning that it was supposed to last until 2100. From this year, it should have had another eighty-six years, but look at it now. It is a sorry sight. We need US$280 million to fix it. That money could have been invested elsewhere. So, we have to be serious with some of the pronouncements we make. 

Mr Speaker, in the agricultural sector, there is late purchase of maize because of alleged high moisture content. That has been the experience in Moomba Constituency. I was saddened when I went there in July, 2014, and found that the Government had promised that the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) would start buying the maize on 1st July, 2014. However, July ended without the programme commencing. I spoke to a Mr Liato in charge of the FRA in the Southern Province, engaging him in a heated conversation, and I am happy that, immediately afterwards, he gave instructions for the buying of maize to start. What I am saying here, again, is that, when you make a pronouncement, it should be honoured. I do not know how the moisture content issue has come about. As far as I remember, we have never had such a scenario before. 

Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister of Agriculture and Livestock made a ministerial statement, sometime back, in which he said that an area must produce more than 5,000 bags of maize in order for the FRA to establish a satellite depot there. 


Mr Mooya: Mr Speaker, I have in mind remote areas like my constituency, Moomba, which is along the Gweembe …


Mr Speaker: Let us listen to your colleague. It is very discouraging to debate and compete with other conversations simultaneously. We all want to be heard when we are speaking.

Hon. Mooya, you may continue.

Mr Mooya: Mr Speaker, that policy should be relaxed for areas like Moomba Ward, which is 30 km away from the nearest satellite depot. Imagine farmers transporting their maize using bad roads to reach a depot 30 km away. Some areas should be exempted from the 5,000 threshold in order to reduce poverty levels, if we are serious about doing that, because agriculture is one of the means of reducing poverty. It should be less than 5,000 bags. 

Mr Speaker, finally, on sport, soccer in particular, I am not happy that we lost the bid to host the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), and would like to echo what others have already said. The selection was very unfair. Zambia should have been given the chance to host. There is no way West Africa can host three consecutive tournaments. The dream of the United States of Africa will not come true if some of us are selfish. I call that being selfish. All African countries are equal. Next time there is a bidding process for hosting AFCON tournaments, West African countries should not think that they are bigger than Southern African countries.

Mr Speaker, those were my few words.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu (Kalabo Central): Mr Speaker, first and foremost, I congratulate ...

Hon. Member: Hanjika!

Mr Miyutu: ... the new hon. Members of Parliament on making it to this House. Secondly, I am a very happy man because Zambia is celebrating fifty years of Independence. I am particularly happy for the people Kalabo, who have lived the fifty years in extreme hardship and pain. It has been a very good fifty years for the people of the Western Province. 

Mr Speaker, when in Lusaka, I tend to restrict myself to my room so that I do not envy what is in this city. 

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, I assume that we have had speeches like this (lifted the President’s Speech up) in the last fifty years. However, the speeches have not any direct impact on the people of Kalabo. If you go to Mitwi, you will ask yourself whether you are in a country that is commemorating fifty years of freedom, but you will fail to answer your own question. 

Mr Speaker, I would like to lament that, in his Speech, the President commented on the by-elections, congratulated the winners and lamented the level of violence that characterise by-elections. I also wish to lament the violence I witnessed in those by-elections. I had been hearing about political violence and thought that the stories were mere allegations. This year, I realised, during the by-election in Buyela Ward, that it is members of the Ruling Party who are very provocative.


Mr Miyutu: I have now found the answer. They provoke others, probably, because they have the police ... 

Hon. Member: And pangas.

Mr Miyutu: ... at their disposal. I witnessed the provocation 100 per cent, probably, 150 per cent. However, the President came here and talked about peace and unity. Do you know that there is peace in a dead body?


Mr Miyutu: Should we appreciate that kind of peace? We want peace for the living, not unity among the dead. Therefore, those in power must have human hearts, which pump blood and carry the soul, to feel for other people. 

Mr Speaker, Government vehicles were used to go and provoke people but, at the end of the day, there were claims that the Opposition was violent, after which they declared victory.


Mr Miyutu: They killed cattle on the day of voting. 


Mr Miyutu: It is very surprising, and one wonders what type of a Government this is. I even pity those who won because theirs was not a legitimate victory, like it was for some of us.  

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, let us not just talk. There is only one thing that can talk and act in words. All human beings must talk and act physically. If we just talk without implementing the word, the word will just die out. Let us rule in peace the way our founding fathers did. 

Hon. Government Members: Aah, they were violent. 

Mr Miyutu: I would not know about that. However, after what I saw, I plead that no blood will be shed. What pride can there be in shedding another Zambian’s blood? 

Mr Speaker, the Government has also raised the issue of education. I do not know where its officials did their research or the countries where they found the good things that they want to bring here. It is very saddening. 


Mr Miyutu: Surely, are we being fair to expect a child in Lyapepa, where there is no solar or hydro power, to use an iPad or laptop computer?


Hon. Opposition Members: No!

Mr Miyutu: Let us think twice about that. Are we being very fair? 

Mr Speaker, I know that those who gain power may have selfish interests and want to dominate those in the rural areas and have no access to iPads, but the November/December examination is written by someone in Mitwi, where there is no iPad, and someone in Lyapepa, where there is no teacher who has learnt Information and Communication Technology (ICT). How fair are we? What do you want to achieve, in the first place? 

Hon. Member: Banzalyeni.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, it is said that education is the key to success in life. However, it is not. 


Mr Miyutu: It is a spear. The Government is using education to kill people in rural areas like Kalabo because it is denying them that key, which has now turned into a spear. 


Mr Miyutu: Let us not play rabbit-and-elephant games. In one tale, the rabbit was carrying honey and the elephant wanted a taste of that honey. So, the rabbit said that, since the elephant was very big, he should be tied up before tasting the honey. The elephant agreed to be tied up and the rabbit left with the honey, without honouring its promise to the elephant. 


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, when we talk about what we want to do for the people of Kalabo or any other area, we must do them. We should not first tie the people up. Let us just give. 


Mr Miyutu: These reforms or changes that we bring up should be looked at. 

Mr Speaker, I live in my constituency and know that even the teachers who are at those schools are complaining because they do not have the iPads. Even the teaching materials are not there. In some schools, there are only fifteen textbooks. Hon. Mabumba, can you imagine that …


Mr Miyutu: … there are only fifteen Lozi textbooks for Zambian languages for a school that has about 300 pupils? What magic can a teacher perform? Unfortunately, those textbooks do not have the magical powers to enable a teacher to use them to cater for 300 pupils like Jesus Christ, who is written in the Holy Book to have used five loaves to feed thousands of people. 


Mr Miyutu: You have to be fair and realistic in life. Let us rule diligently, honestly and faithfully. We should not just write, but write and implement so that we all live in the same Zambia. I cherish the rural areas because there is a lot of suffering there. I live with the people I represent. So, I am caught by surprise when I see things that do not work out. I realise that it is the reason people do not want to go to the rural areas. Stay in the towns, it is okay. However, do for us what is good for us. We will not eat this paper (holding the President’s Speech up). 

Sir, the community schools are still under the community. None of the five community schools in Kalabo has been gazzetted. The community has to continue paying those poor teachers. 


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: Which goal do you want to meet now? I know that, sometimes, false reports are written, claiming that some goals have been attained, but it is only Lusaka. Which goal have you attained when the multitude in Kalabo rural is still under-privileged?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, the introduction of local languages for Grades 1 to 4 is good. However, what magic will be used at a school where there is only one Mr Kalaluka who is a teacher? You think it will work just because he is Lozi? It will not. 


Mr Miyutu: Sir, the language we use in the villages is not the same as the one you test for in schools. Who will teach them the grammar when there is only one teacher? 

Hon. Opposition Members: Mr Kalaluka

Mr Miyutu: The Mr Kalaluka I referred to is not a magician. I pity the people who write these speeches that are never implemented.


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, let us use power to make life better in Zambia. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: If you forget about education, you know that you will be digging graves for us in the rural areas. That is why the Patriotic Front (PF) does not want the new Constitution. It even objected to the submission that Members of Parliament should be residents of their constituencies. Those from town, who are highly learned, rejected the submission. They do not want to see the new Constitution because they want to continue tormenting us in the rural areas. 


Mr Miyutu: Sir, we know that the new Constitution has some good fruits for the people in the rural areas, but they do not want its fruits to reach the rural areas.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: Imagine.

Mr Mutelo: We are tired. 
Mr Miyutu: The people of Kalabo want the Constitution. You should get tired of telling the same story every day. Why do you not get bored? How can you be telling the same story of 650 clinics every day? 

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, I was in Mitwi and was told that Ministry of Health personnel had gone there and told them to clear the area where a clinic is supposed to be constructed. I even saw the cleared area. However, the clinic has not been built. How can we continue talking about 650 clinics for three years? How I wish I had the money. I would have constructed the clinic in Mitwi. 

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Miyutu: Yes. The hon. Minister has indicated that the Government has no means of building the clinics. We may not even have clinics in areas like Mitwi. 

 Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: Sir, on agricultural diversification, the Government talked about a 3.4 million metric tonnes. However, what use is that when the cost of mealie meal is K85? You tell us in Kalabo that there is a bumper harvest. Even to those who have not studied economics, a bumper harvest calls for a reduction in price of mealie meal. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: I do not need to have a degree to know that.

Mr Nkombo: It is the law of supply and demand.

Mr Miyutu: That is why, in an area where there are many beautiful ladies, even the dowry goes down.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Speaker: We are not sure about that.


Mr Miyutu: Despite the alleged bumper harvest, the cost of mealie meal is rising every day.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hanjika, mwata.


Mr Miyutu: Sir, to the people in Kalabo, there is no bumper harvest because you have not enabled the farmers there to grow enough cassava. I do not know who advises the speech writers.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hon. Simuusa.

Mr Miyutu: Who told them that one can grow maize in Kalabo? Even if they were to take 1 million tonnes of maize seed there, where would they grow it? Will it be grown in heaven?


Hon. Opposition Member: In the air. 

Mr Miyutu: We will just look at you and your seed. Maybe, you will do something to make your seed multiply on its own like Jesus did.


Mr Miyutu: Give us cassava and millet. That is the crop diversification we are looking for. Let us be serious and practical instead of dwelling on rhetoric. Let us be on the ground.

Mr Speaker, somebody who has studied agriculture should know that the zone in which Kalabo is does not support maize growing. You do not even give us camp extension officers. The animals in Ng’uma are dying of diseases as a result. If the few animals we still have get depleted, will the Government support us? 

Hon. Opposition Member: Restocking.

Mr Miyutu: Sir, the Government does not even want to restock the farmers in Kalabo, claiming that there is Contagious Bovine Pleuro-pneumonia (CBPP), but is it not the responsibility of the Government to get rid of the CBPP? 


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, it is the responsibility of the Patriotic Front (PF) Government to do that so that the livelihoods of the people of Kalabo are uplifted. Understanding that is as simple as drinking water.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo interjected. 

Mr Mutelo: We are tired, Sir.

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, I have sixty seconds left, but I know that the maker of life cannot allow sad situations perpetually. One day, things will change in this country and, when that happens, you will admire the way things will be. 

Sir, let us thank those who allowed multi-partism in this country. We had to have bad rule so that, next time, we could appreciate the value of good governance. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, by the time we will be in power, … 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyutu: … we will not allow consistency, …


Mr Miyutu: ..., inconsistency, whereby people will make promises they do not intend to fulfil.

Mr Speaker, those were the sentiments of the people of Kalabo that I wished to add to the debate on the Speech the President’s gave to us on Friday, 19th September, 2014.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima (Ikeleng’i): Mr Speaker, thank you for according me this chance to add my voice to the debate on the Motion on the Floor of this House. First and foremost, let me congratulate my colleagues who have joined us in this House, beginning with our lady who is not in the House at the moment, Hon. Kalima, the giant killer.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Sir, I also welcome the new hon. Patriotic Front (PF) Members and the hon. United Party for National Development (UPND) Member. 

Sir, to me, Volume II of the President’s Speech is good. 


Mr Muchima: I will come to that.

Sir, if we were to follow what is contained in this Speech, we would run a very good country because the wording befits the people of Zambia. However, the picture the Speech paints is the opposite of the reality. There is no sincerity because we have not accounted for the first two Speeches that have been delivered to this House.  

Mr Speaker, from the time the PF Government came to power, this is the third President’s Speech to this House, but nothing has been accounted for even from the previous ones. 

Sir, in the North-Western Province, the road connecting the province to the Western Province via Kabompo and Mwinilunga is still a dream. The T5, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Road that runs from Solwezi through Mwinilunga and Jimbe to the border with Angola has not yet been built. 

Sir, the people of the province also still wait for diesel for them to have electricity and envy those who talk of massive infrastructure in their areas. When you say that something is massive, it should be able to be seen from a distance. When you see Hon. GBM (Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba) coming, you can notice that he is massive. 


Mr Mwamba rose.


Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, when you look at Hon. Muntanga, you can see that he is also  massive, although not as much as Hon. Mwamba.

Hon. Members: Stand up!


Mr Muchima: Sir, when you look at Hon. Kabinga Pande, however, you will notice that he is not massive.


Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, I think that we apply the word wrongly. When you say that there is massive development, we should be able to see the development everywhere. Even here, in Lusaka, there is nothing that has taken place. Just look at Akashambatwa Road. You are only mending roads that are already there, forgetting about those that need to be gravelled. Which road needs more attention between the Solwezi/Chingola Road and the Great East Road? What national resource is driven on the Great East Road? You forget that we have Lumwana Mine in Solwezi, and Kalumbila and Kansanshi mines from which most of our copper comes. That is where the priority should lie. Let us not look at the voting pattern, but rather at developmental issues that will add value to this country. Had it not been for the late President, Dr Mwanawasa, SC., today, we would not have those mines in the North-Western Province.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

 Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, the late Dr Mwanawasa, SC., made a brave decision to open up those mines, and I think that he knew what he was doing. Apparently, God blessed that province with plenty water, good land, good people and minerals. Everything is there. It is up to the leadership of this country to appreciate that. If you ignore that, you will be ignoring yourselves, too. In the future, if there will be a great leader from the province and he ignores the other regions, it will not be good. That is not even the way it is supposed to be. As Christians, we forgive you. 

Mr Speaker, let me also talk about infrastructure. Not long ago, the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education was boasting, on the Floor of this House, that it had been given money to do this and that. I must confess that what is in this Speech is that many of the projects that have been awarded are on standstill because there is no money to pay the contractors. For example, the construction of a high school in Ikeleng’i has not started. Hon. Mabumba, you should go there and see for yourself. I know Zambia very well. What is happening is that, when you work on a 2 km stretch of road, you will be shown on television telling people what you are doing because you are used to telling people lies. 

Mr Speaker: Order! 

Hon. Member for Ikeleng’i, please, withdraw the word ‘lies’.

Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, I withdraw that word. They are always giving people misleading information on television because they cannot be challenged. Let us be sincere. If you are sincere according to the Speech of the President, you will have good governance and everyone will cherish your rule. 

Mr Speaker, let me echo what my colleague said about violence. These are days in which we should be modernised in the way we do things. If you win a by-election, you will be congratulated. If you lose, that is it. You do not need to have a machete or go to make false promises for you to win an election. I listened to the promises that were made in Zambezi West and wondered why this Government was cutting hair on one side of the head. As its members talked about Zambezi West, I expected them to also talk about Zambezi East, especially Ikeleng’i. The PF promised many things to many areas. In Luangwa, there was a by-election and many promises were made that have not yet been delivered. In Mufumbwe, there is nothing that has been done, too. There was an election in Solwezi East and many promises were made by hon. Ministers, but nothing has been done. After the elections, nobody has even been there.


Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, let me warn my colleagues that, in 2016, ... I worked in shushushu land and have experience.

Mr Speaker: What do you mean by that?

Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, shushushu land is a nickname for the Zambia Security Intelligence Service. I worked in that department for a long time. Therefore, I am trying to caution my friends on their excitement. The people even quote your statements about massive development. I was surprised yesterday when the hon. Minister of Health said that the ministry could not deploy doctors to Kaputa because the place was difficult to reach.


Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, I thought that he was talking about Mwinilunga or Ikeleng’i, not Kaputa. We have heard several times on television that there is massive development in the Northern Province. So, there is a contradiction in the statements that are being made on the Floor of this House. Which is which? The Government should talk about things that are real and are on the ground so that we can appreciate. When a person is sick, do not hide because all of us can get sick. It is better to say when a person is sick so that we can mobilise solidarity and prayers for them. We may sing about putting more money in people’s pockets, but that will not help.


Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, let me now talk about devolving power to the local authorities or decentralisation. This is a mockery in the President’s Speech. The local government sector is non-performing in rural areas. I do not even know what the councils do. What has made them active is the Constituency Development Fund (CDF), which ends up in the council officers’ pockets. In the past, when an hon. Member of Parliament was in charge of the CDF, there was development taking place in the constituencies. Today, the councillors change the instructions on a daily basis in order to benefit. For instance, they give tenders to their friends. How do you expect a villager to have a company that can be awarded a tender? We are supposed to empower the local people in areas in which they are skilled. For instance, if they grow plants, empower them in that area. Currently, I see contractors in Ikeleng’i who come from other towns, such as Lusaka and Kitwe, being awarded tenders and, when we investigate, we discover that the companies belong to friends of council officers.


Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, it is unfortunate that, when the CDF was less, we used to achieve more with it than currently, when it has been increased to over K1 million, because much of it is going into this mysterious chain. 

Sir, I am happy that the hon. Minister is a seasoned former Town Clerk with a lot of experience. He should stop his officers. Decentralisation means giving power to the local people, not the hon. Ministers controlling things. In Lunda, we say, “Uhana mpembe, ukwata kumukila”, meaning that one should not hold on to the tail of a goat one wants to give to someone.


Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, when we ask the councillors to buy a vehicle for garbage collection, we are told that there is a need to get instructions from the hon. Ministers. What decentralisation is there? An hon. Member of Parliament is there to guide the councillors. We are there and chair council meetings but, for every project, we are told that the hon. Ministers are supposed to give instructions. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister should be careful, this time, and not set traps for himself because he can be changed at any time and find himself facing the same restrictions that he has imposed. You can ask my wife, Hon. Masebo. She was there.

Hon. Government Members: Is she your wife?

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, let us be liberal and give the real power to the people. You should give it to your colleagues here. If I steal, let me be arrested like I was arrested by Mr Masumba sometime back. Do not fear to be arrested because, if you are innocent, you will be cleared by the courts of law. If you have stolen, …


Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, there are many developmental projects that the MMD left in progress. Many communication towers have been built everywhere but, surprisingly, the network is still poor, with people having to climb anthills and risk breaking their legs just to have network. What is happening? A foundation was laid down, but we are not connecting. Where is the effectiveness? In Lunda we say, “Kwikuta kwa mpongu kwatachikang’a kubudidi”, meaning that, for a monkey to be full, it has to start eating in the morning. If the PF Government is not effective this time, but hopes to be in 2015, it will just be giving a chance to others to rule.
Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, the issue of recapitalising State-owned enterprises shocks me. Let me talk about the Zambia State Insurance Corporation (ZSIC), the first insurance company in the country and the one my colleagues here worked for (pointing at some hon. Opposition Members), which is not doing so well despite the Government continuously pumping money into the company, yet the privately-owned companies that have just come on the scene are doing far much better. When a company is in the Government’s hands, everything just goes into a tumble but, when a company is in private hands, it performs well. What could be wrong? It is because of political interference. 

Mr Speaker, it is the same thing with the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO). The corporation wants to participate in every project. We have many waterfalls but, if a company decides to undertake a project, the procedures may take five years because ZESCO has developed an interest in the project despite not having the money to pump into it. It wants to participate in every project even when it is broke. If this Government prioritised investing energy in this country, the money that we could raise from the sector would be second only to that which we get from mining. However, we are very slow in making decisions on this aspect.

Mr Speaker, Hon. Yaluma, my colleague and my former boss, has been a practical man but, unfortunately, he has not convinced his colleagues to give him more authority so that we can earn money from this sector. We are sitting on it. Time comes and goes, but nothing is happening. People are only moving with files where there is nchekelako. When there is no interest, nothing moves. So, we should change this attitude. 

Sir, the Government should not take development only to areas where people voted for the PF. It is important to identify areas where development can attract investors. However, we have seen roads being constructed in areas where there is no economic value while areas with economic value are not being developed.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, trying to shoot animals, but aiming in the wrong direction?


Hon. Opposition Members: Tell them!

Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, most of the projects are at a standstill because of the quality. Instead of giving every Zambian a chance to participate in developmental projects, they are choosing cadres. Even the Chinese they are bringing have to be connected to a PF cadre. That is why the quality of some of these projects is not good. I was impressed with the hon. Minister of Health because he condemned a building in Luapula Province. That is the way it should be. If you went round, you would find that most of the people who are connected to the Chinese are cadres. 

Mr Speaker, when the late Dr Mwanawasa, SC., may his soul rest in peace, became President, he first cleaned his house. He dealt with the indiscipline that was in his house first. Today, if you want to be a thief and be safe, you should join the PF.


Mr Muchima: Mr Speaker, President Mwanawasa, SC., would suspend an hon. Minister just over a mere difference with a fellow hon. Minister. He would even tell them …

Mr Speaker: Hon. Member, please, bear in mind that we do not debate ourselves.

Mr Muchima: I apologise, Sir.

Mr Speaker, good governance requires you to treat people equally. In the village, the moment someone becomes a chief, everyone becomes his subject, including those who may have competed against him for the throne that he has ascended to. Therefore, he has to treat everyone equally. Unfortunately, what I am seeing today is that the Government has deliberately ignored the North-Western Province, a good province that built Hon. Namulambe, which is unfair. There is honey and fresh water in that province. My sister, the hon. Minister of Tourism and Art, can confirm that there is no airstrip at the source of the Zambezi River, which is supposed to attract tourists. There is also no good road network to connect the country to Angola, which would be very economically viable, simply because the people in that province did not vote for the PF. The PF Government will be punished by this God in whom I believe. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order!


The Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development (Mr Yaluma): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that this House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.


The House adjourned at 1930 hours until 0900 hours on Friday, 26th September, 2014.