Debates - Friday, 14th October, 2016

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Friday, 14th October, 2016

The House met at 0900 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]





The Vice-President (Mrs Wina): Mr Speaker, I rise to acquaint the House with the business it will consider next week.

Sir, on Wednesday, 19th October, 2016, the Business of the House will begin with Questions, if there will be any. This will be followed by presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. Thereafter, the House will consider Private Members’ Motions, if there will be any. Then, the House will continue with the debate on the Motion of Thanks to His Excellency the President’s Address.

Mr Speaker, on Thursday, 20th October, 2016, the Business of the House will start with Questions, if there will be any. This will be followed by presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. After that, the House will debate a Motion on the approval of the Government ministries and departments established by His Excellency the President. Then, the House will continue with the debate on the Motion of Thanks to His Excellency the President’s Address.

Sir, on Friday, 21st October, 2016, the Business of the House will begin with Her Honour the Vice-President’s Question Time. This will be followed by Questions to hon. Ministers, if there will be any. This will then be followed by presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. After that, the House will continue with the debate on the Motion of thanks to His Excellency the President’s Address.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.




The Minister of Tourism and Arts (Mr C. R. Banda): Mr Speaker, I wish to thank you for giving me this opportunity to give a statement on the development of the Livingstone Community Resource Centre in the City of Livingstone, Southern Province. This is known as the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Legacy Project because it will serve as a reminder that Zambia and Zimbabwe co-hosted the 20th Session of the General Assembly in August, 2013. The background to this project relates to the co-hosting of the 20th Session of the UNWTO General Assembly in Livingstone, Zambia and Victoria Falls, from 24th to 29th August, 2013.
Mr Speaker, following the successful hosting of the 20th Session of the UNWTO General Assembly in Livingstone in August, 2013, the UNWTO Secretariat set aside U S $47,500 to construct a legacy project known as Livingstone Community Sustainable Tourism Resource Centre to honour the local people for their hospitality. The funds were donated by the Government of the Republic of Korea through the UNWTO “Sustainable Tourism for Eliminating Poverty” commonly known as ST-EP Foundation. A memorandum of understanding between the Government of the Republic of Korea, through ST-EP Foundation and the Government of the Republic of Zambia through the Ministry of Tourism and Arts, was signed. The Zambian Government will provide counterpart funds to meet administrative costs.

Sir, the ST-EP is a project of the UNWTO, which promotes poverty alleviation through the provision of assistance to sustainable development project, and aims at creating jobs for people living on less than a dollar a day. The ST-EP provides a wide range of portfolio of projects and all the beneficiaries of the ST-EP projects are official development assistance (ODA) recipients and least developed countries (LDCs) of which Zambia is one. Projects are executed in close collaboration with National Tourism Authorities, local governments, non-governmental organisations, development organisations and tourism enterprises in the beneficiary countries.

Mr Speaker, currently, there are two projects that are being implemented in Zambia with the support of the ST-EP Foundation. These are Mofungautsi Village in the Lower Zambezi in Chiawa of Kafue District, Lusaka Province and Mwandi Cultural Centre in Mwandi District, Western Province.

Sir, the objectives of the projects are to

(a) provide the community with a self-sustaining facility that will contribute to the improvement of the livelihood of the residents of Livingstone City by acquiring skills and by engaging in income generating activities at the resource centre and at household levels.

(b) empower the residents of Livingstone with the necessary tourism knowledge and skills that will, in turn, enable them generate their income,

(c) provide various training and entrepreneurship activities that will, in turn build capacity of the local people to enable them to improve their businesses and develop entrepreneurial skills in tourism businesses,

(d) contribute to tourism product diversification in Livingstone as it will add to the products and services offered in the tourist capital, and

(e)  lastly,  to provide knowledge and skills and showcase talent and skills in areas of tour guiding, handcraft-making, curio-making, traditional Zambian food cooking, art and designs, environmental conservation awareness and other skills, which are necessary for developing and marketing the tourism industry in Livingstone.

Mr Speaker, allow me to outline the progress that has been made, so far, in making this important project a reality. The Government, through the Livingstone City Council, has allocated land for the development of the UNWTO/ST-EP Livingstone Community Sustainable Tourism Resource Centre Project. The land was offered to the Ministry of Tourism and Arts at zero rent consideration as it is a community project. The location is in Dambwa North, Livingstone City. The selected land is located right in the community and is, therefore, easily accessible.

The site has been cleared and fenced. Additionally, three billboards have been erected to deter would-be encroachers on the land. The community was engaged to clear the site as a way of creating a sense of ownership so that it begins to appreciate and benefit from the project.

The ministry has engaged the Directorate of Engineering at Livingstone City Council to prepare architectural drawings and a bill of quantities.  The hiring of contractors will be done through selective tender once the architectural designs and bill of quantities has been prepared. The Provincial Administration Procurement Office will spearhead the process. A ‘no objection’ for selective tender has been obtained from the Zambia Public Procurement Authority (ZPPA).

Mr Speaker, a management committee has been set up to spearhead the implementation of the project. The composition of the committee includes institutions that are involved in tourism-related activities.

The ministry, working together with the Livingstone City Council, has commenced community awareness activities in the surrounding communities. Several community meetings have been held to ensure that the residents appreciate the expected benefits of the project, thereby instilling a sense of ownership in them.

Mr Speaker, the response from the community is encouraging and members have since accepted the project and agreed to second two community representatives to represent them on the local planning committee. Further, engagements are going on with different stakeholders within Livingstone and media houses have been brought on board to assist in disseminating the project idea to the masses.

In conclusion, I would like to urge this august House, especially hon. Members of Parliament in constituencies where the Government is implementing various projects, to take keen interest in monitoring their implementation.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

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

Mr Sing’ombe (Dundumwezi): Mr Speaker, throughout his statement, the hon. Minister kept referring to Livingstone. I did not hear him, at any one point, refer to Kazungula District, where the Victoria Falls is located. I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether Kazungula, as a district, is deriving any benefit from the Victoria Falls.

Mr Banda: Mr Speaker, the statement is about the resource centre which has been built in Livingstone and not Kazungula. We still have other projects that we need to spread throughout the country.

I am sure that in future, we shall consider Kazungula. However, at the moment, the resource centre is in Livingstone.

I thank you, Sir.


The Minister of Agriculture (Ms Siliya): Mr Speaker, I thank you for this opportunity to make a ministerial statement on the upcoming World Food Day and also to share with the House some of the undertakings by the Government to ensure food security and food nutrition.

Mr Speaker, today, about 800 million people in the world are chronically hungry. This is not simply a result of the absence of food in the affected, countries but a result of factors such as inequitable food distribution, drought and floods caused by climate change and, indeed, instability of agricultural production in times of war.

Globally, women and children are the most affected by the lack of food. In Zambia, recent statistics from the Zambia Vulnerability Assessment Committee indicate that 49.6 per cent of children are stunted while 14.7 per cent of children, under the age of five, are underweight. This is mainly due to inadequate access to food and poor nutrition.

Mr Speaker, it is against this background that on Sunday, 16th October, the world will be commemorating the World Food Day. This day was set aside by the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations (UN), as a day for the entire world to stop and reflect on successes and failures of past and current strategies to fight hunger in the world. Remember, 800 million people in the world are chronically hungry.

To underscore the importance of this day, two goals of the UN Sustainable Development Agenda include ending poverty and hunger, achieving food security and improved nutrition as well as promotion of sustainable agriculture.

Mr Speaker, the agriculture sector in Zambia employs 70 per cent of the labour force. Over 89 per cent of all rural households in Zambia are engaged in agricultural activities. However, despite the majority of poor people living in rural areas and depending on agriculture, the sector has only grown at an average of 2.5 per cent between 2010 and 2014. This is way below the target of the 6 per cent agreed upon by the Maputo Declaration. It is very clear that in future, agriculture should not be taken as ‘business as usual’.

Mr Speaker, the agriculture sector in Zambia is faced with numerous challenges, including the following:

(a) a lack of consistency and clarity in policy implementation as well as an inadequate regulatory framework to support the expansion of agriculture and increased output;

(b) limited private sector investment resulting in the increased burden on the Government to support input and marketing programmes. This is coupled with limited finances  and sometimes financing strategies;

(c) inadequate investment in research and development resulting in the inability to use research and development as a tool to guide policy and investment in agriculture. This also includes poor linkages between agricultural training institutions and industry;

(d) inadequate extension service delivery to farmers, especially in rural areas. There is also an absence of Information Communication Technology (ICT) and mechanisation in agriculture, especially among small holder farmers;

(e) poor infrastructure development relating to agricultural expansion and agro-processing; and

(f) the impact of climate change resulting in weather events such as the El Nino phenomenon which has recently impacted Zambia and other countries in Southern Africa negatively.

Mr Speaker, the theme for this year’s World Food Day is, Climate is Changing, Food and Agriculture Must Too. I find this theme appropriate as it reminds us of the need to devise appropriate strategies for the challenges we are facing in the agriculture sector, including climate change. The role of the Ministry of Agriculture in Zambia is to provide appropriate policy, regulatory and political leadership to translate the Patriotic Front (PF) Manifesto on agriculture and the upcoming Seventh National Development Plan (SNDP) into appropriate strategies that will enable Zambia to attain national food security and increase agriculture contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). In this regard, my ministry intends to undertake the following:

(a) review and harmonise the existing policy and regulatory framework;

(b) increase co-ordination among the various programmes in the ministry and with our co-operating partners;

(c) undertake a specific review of the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) as well as the mandate and operations of the Food Reserve Agency (FRA);

(d) work closely with the Ministry of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection; Commerce, Trade and Industry; Ministry of Finance; the upcoming Ministry for Water and Sanitation and Environmental Protection, and the Ministry of Energy to accelerate investment, especially private sector investment in the agriculture sector. This will be achieved through the following:

(i) setting up a Farmer Mechanisation Support Facility whose aim is to increase productivity and production

(ii) setting up  of twenty water irrigation schemes including bulk water distribution facilities such as dams and other water infrastructure. This will enable farmers to produce even in the off season and avoid low production in times of drought;

(iii) expansion of extension services through the use of Information Communication Technology (ICT) with emphasis on promoting climate-smart agriculture. This will entail working closely with mobile phone service providers to achieve 100 per cent communication coverage. In this regard, we aim to complete the migration of the e-Voucher System during the 2017/2018 farming season. The Government also intends to lay optic fibre infrastructure along the Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) corridor so as to improve the efficiency in communication and the movement of goods; and

(iv) this Government has made a decision to prioritise agriculture. As such, infrastructure in energy, transport, water and others will be geared towards the growth of the agriculture sector. In this vein, the Government has reaffirmed its commitment to construct the railway line from Chipata through Petauke to the TAZARA corridor. This will increase efficiency in the internal movement of goods within Zambia as well as facilitate export of agricultural products throughout the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region.

(v) our focus on crop diversification will include cassava, groundnuts, soya beans, sunflower, cotton, cowpeas, cashew nuts and other horticultural products;

(vi) the Ministry of Agriculture in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance, and the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry will undertake targeted trade missions to countries such as the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Angola, Namibia, Rwanda and South Africa with a view to increase exports to these countries;

(vii) devise innovative and targeted financing products for small holder and emergent farmers, especially women and the youth. This will specifically focus on crops that are meant for agro-processing and export;

(viii) in the promotion of agro-processing and industrial parks, the Government will also establish thirteen milling plants in outlaying areas of the country to promote value addition and food security. My ministry will promote the blending of commodities such as cassava and millet with maize and wheat to improve nutritional value as well as to diversify dietary consumption patterns away from maize and wheat only;

(ix) my ministry will also work closely with stakeholders such as the Zambia Co-operative Federation (ZCF) to create multi-purpose co-operatives in every constituency; and

(x) the Government is investing in the development of farming blocks with a core venture that will be established to support small holder farms. The core venture will create employment, provide a market for our small holder farmers as well as promote value addition.

Mr Speaker, as I conclude, let me now take this opportunity to recognise the efforts made by  our various co-operating partners, agencies and civil society organisations in particular, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the World Food Programme (WFP) and the Scaling Up Nutrition Platform for assisting the Government to promote food and nutrition security as well as climate change mitigation programmes.

Sir, to commemorate the World Food Day, I will be joining farmers in Chilanga later this morning to launch the activities to commemorate the World Food Day. This will also serve as part of my field visit to appreciate the success and challenges in food production in our country. I wish to assure you all that the Government pledges total commitment to the attainment of food and nutrition security at both household and national levels. It is in this regard that the ban on the export of maize grain remains in force until further notice. However, all efforts have been made to avoid frustrating exports of permitted agricultural products such as maize seed and bran. As a Government, we are committed to working with all stakeholders and development partners to achieve the important objective of making agriculture the number one sector for job and wealth creation.

I thank you, Sir.

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

Mrs Chonya (Kafue): Mr Speaker, let me start by commending the hon. Minister for her well-presented statement. She reminded me of the good old days when we used to listen to the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC).


Mrs Chonya: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister outlined a number of strategies about how the Government will support agriculture production in the country. However, I did not hear her mention anything about the Nitrogen Chemicals of Zambia (NCZ) in Kafue, which plays a very strategic role in boosting agriculture. I want to find out whether the hon. Minister has any plans to revamp this very strategic industry. In fact, at the moment, workers at that company have not been paid for a long time.

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member of Parliament for her very kind words.

Sir, I said in the statement that the Ministry of Agriculture, together with our colleagues, will undertake a review of some policies, regulatory frameworks, as well as some of the programmes that are existing, including a total review of the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) and the operations and mandate of the Food Reserve Agency (FRA). We know that what we want to achieve is food security and improved nutrition, but as we do this, there must also be an opportunity in agriculture for job and wealth creation. The Ministry of Agriculture cannot just be about maize and fertiliser. We must truly put our money where we obtain our food and diversify our crops so that we have more jobs and more wealth because, at the end of the day, that is what we want to achieve.  So, in trying to espouse the vision that the President set,  for agriculture to create jobs and wealth, we are working backwards to review all the bottlenecks that are existing including the Nitrogen Chemicals of Zambia (NCZ)  and find the appropriate solution to resolve the problems.

Sir, I take note of her concern and I assure her that this is receiving very critical attention.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Jamba (Mwembeshi): Mr Speaker, I have noted with concern that the Ministry of Agriculture is not working in collaboration with the Meteorological Department. There seems to be heavy downpours, without notice, causing the poor farmers to plant the only seed they have, which they are given by the agriculture department, thinking that the rains have started. Are you working with the meteorological department to ensure that they give us correct information, noting that sometimes they forecast El Nino and the opposite happens?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, we will receive equipment from the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) to support the Meteorological Department in Zambia very soon. This equipment will aid in addressing the issue that the hon. Member has highlighted. Climate Change is real and this is why this year’s World Food Programme (WFP) Day theme is ‘Climate Change is Real and so Food and Agriculture Must Change’. The way that we manage the agriculture sector in Zambia has to change. Weather patterns have to be critically observed so that we give the right information to our farmers. We want to ensure that we include Information Communication Technology (ICT) so that communication is easy, faster and more efficient between the ministry, other relevant bodies and the farmers.
Sir, we want to emphasise extension services. Currently, extension services do not use technology and that is one of the areas we wish to look at so that we can address the concerns raised.
I thank you, Sir.
Mr Mutale (Chitambo): Mr Speaker, of the thirteen milling plants that were mentioned, will the Central Province, or Chitambo in particular, be a beneficiary?
Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, at the moment, what we have is the principle that we should have thirteen milling plants in outlying areas so that we can have value addition in those areas. However, the specifics of where they will be located are yet to be worked out. The Government has five years to respond to the huge mandate we were given and in responding to that mandate, we want to do the work so that the people can see that our promises were real. Putting up these thirteen milling plants is a way to provide the jobs that our many young people need and a way to provide wealth creation. If the project is successful, we will not end with the thirteen but, at the moment, we want to support the outlying areas with thirteen milling plants.
I thank you, Sir.
Mr Mbangweta (Nkeyema): Mr Speaker, where will the twenty dams or boreholes be placed and what criteria was used in determining the places where those twenty dams will be placed?
Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, let me begin by putting the undertakings by the Government to support agriculture in context. In his speech to this House, the President was clear that he wanted to see more job and wealth creation from the agriculture sector. As a result, he instructed that the  Government ministries and departments should not to work in isolation and so what I presented today is part of a response to the call by the President that we need an integrated approach to resolve some of our issues. The issues that affect the Ministry of Agriculture go beyond the ministry itself and include issues of water, land, energy, power and finance. Therefore, we are putting this plan together because if agriculture is going to be the lead sector in terms of job and wealth creation, then, this is the basic infrastructure we need to spur investment, especially private sector investment.
Sir, we have these plans and if we are going to develop, we cannot continue to depend on rain-fed agriculture. It is important that we provide bulk water supply in an organised fashion, especially to farming blocks. This means that we have to put up massive dams and connectivity in terms of pipes, backward and forward linkages to core ventures in a farming block so that they are links to small-holder farmers. In doing this, we will have to identify sites that we believe will provide a greater return on investment. The whole idea must make business sense.
Mr Speaker, this is the planning and principle stage. I am sure that we will come back when this process is over and budgeting has been made to give information on the specifics of where these sites will be.
I thank you, Sir.
Ms E. Phiri: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has talked about value addition to our agricultural products. We have a tree called the mukula which is illegally cropped. Everyday we hear news of trucks that have been impounded. Will the Government consider growing the mukula tree on a larger scale and possibly make it one of our dependable sources of income. Once the tree is grown legally, it will be one of the major income generating ventures and would-be buyers and investors could add value to the Zambian economy.
 Hon. Members: Hear, hear!
Mr Sikazwe: Eh ma question!
Mr Speaker: Hon. Minister, some education.
Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, even though issues of the mukula tree do not directly fall under crops in the Ministry of Agriculture,  permit me to say it is the intention of the Government that if we are going to grow the economy, we must have value addition in agriculture. We want to see exports of mealie meal and not exports of maize grain so that we can keep the jobs here. I wish to believe that it would be the same principle for mukula. The Ministry of Agriculture buys a lot of desks, but we should move towards a situation where we produce these desks locally. Within the next five years, we have an opportunity to actually ensure that value addition becomes a priority so that it earns the country the much-needed revenue for social and economic infrastructure.
I thank you, Sir.
Ms Kasune (Keembe): Mr Speaker, firstly, I appreciate the presentation by the hon. Minister of Agriculture and commend her for being a trailblazer for women, regardless of affiliation, in our generation.
Sir, the hon. Minister’s statement is in congruence with the speech made by the President in terms of trying to diversify the economy and to use agriculture to reduce our dependence on copper. As someone who comes from Keembe, one of the most important players in the agricultural sector, what will be done about the poor linkages of education and is there a time frame? I ask this because the Keembe Farming Institute has been neglected. What will the Government do to address that?
Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, I really wish to thank the hon. Member of Parliament for the very kind words and they are very well noted. In countries where agriculture has done well, there is a real link between training institutions, industries and also, the use of research as a tool to guide policies. We actually intend to do that. Like I said, we have got this five-year mandate, as the Patriotic Front (PF) Government, to ensure that we streamline all the processes and work on all the bottlenecks. We have a very enthusiastic hon. Minister of Higher Education, Prof. Nkandu Luo. It is my intention as Minister of Agriculture not to work in isolation with the education institutions. This will ensure that even the syllabuses in these institutions must respond to the needs of our country and our effort to feed the nation. In this regard, we will be able to export so that we earn revenue. We have our work cut out for us. I think what was critical was to first identify and define the problems because if we do not do that, we cannot find the right solution.

Mr Speaker, our priority in the next few weeks will be to identify and define the challenges and then provide the solutions. In principle, some of these infrastructure undertakings that I have outlined today are just the beginning for us to see the foundation. Linkages are critical in an area such as Keembe, in Chisamba, where we have a number of commercial farmers. It is important that the linkages between commercial farmers and the so-called peasant farmers are real because that is the only way small-scale farmers will grow to big commercial farmers. If we just emphasise on the small-scale farmers and ignore the commercial farmers, we will never be able to share wealth. We will continue to share poverty at small-scale farming level. We are, therefore, looking at everything in totality. We are looking at agriculture with fresh eyes so that those linkages, especially training, research and development are real.

Sir, efforts have been made to provide maize seed and other crop seeds that are suitable for this country so that we can address the challenges of climate change, soil types, regional types and rain patterns. We have to ensure that we truly engage with training institutions. I am very sad that all the ten training institutions in this country really leave much to be desired and Keembe is not an exception. I think what we are promising is that we have an opportunity to change this so that even if Keembe falls under the United Party for National Development (UPND), in the election, it should fall under the PF because we would have delivered.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Bwalya (Lupososhi): Mr Speaker, the multi-sectoral approach, synergies and co-ordination amongst the various ministries within the Republic of Zambia is very cardinal and I am sure that is why the President mentioned that we need to come out of the box. The major hindrance in the development of agriculture is the state of the agricultural feeder roads in this country. Does the ministry intend to prioritise it to ensure that it collaborates with the colleagues in the Ministry of Works and Supply and the Ministry of Local Government and Housing so, as to ensure that the state of these feeder roads are improved upon so that the produce and inputs can reach the market and farmers in good time?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, coming from a very agricultural constituency, I appreciate the challenges of feeder roads. Let me repeat that the President made it very clear that the Government cannot operate in isolated silence. We have to communicate with each other. Since we have agreed, as the Government, and nation, that agriculture has to provide the much needed jobs and wealth, we have also agreed that all our planning must be towards achieving this objective. This is why we even have the Minister of National Development and Planning to ensure that we do not forget. He is there to also ensure that the things we plan to do are carried out. I think that the hon. Minister of Works and Supply,  too, comes from a rural constituency and therefore is very enthusiastic to work very closely with the Ministry of Agriculture so that where there should be returns on agriculture investment, we should be able to provide power, feeder roads, tar roads and services such as education, health and housing. We should provide everything that is needed in that community in order to make agriculture a reality.

Mr Speaker, time has come for us to stop thinking of agriculture as a piece of land in the bush, in the middle of nowhere with nothing on it. If what is being produced on the land is going to get  to both local and international (export) markets, there must be devised systems of infrastructure that support exactly that. It is not just about putting nshima on the table. It is about creating wealth. Somebody must make money from agriculture. If nobody is making money from agriculture, it means we would have failed. So, if people are going to get rich from agriculture, the Government is committed towards providing the infrastructure to support it .We are ready to create millionaires in agriculture. Even as we prepare for 2021, all those who would have had any doubt would come back to us because we would have delivered in agriculture.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Lufuma (Kabompo): Mr Speaker, 800 million people are chronically hungry and therefore, suffer from nutritional inadequacy in the entire world. I wonder how many of those are attributed to Zambia. Nevertheless, if I heard the hon. Minister correctly, poor agricultural infrastructure is critical and contributes to the hunger situation in the world, specifically to Zambia. Conversely, it means that if we improve the agricultural infrastructure, it will contribute to alleviation of hunger and improvement in the nutritional status of the Zambian people. Five years ago, the African Development Bank (ADB), with the aim of job and wealth creation, together with the Government of the Republic of Zambia put up infrastructure in the Eastern Province that are called Livestock Marketing Centres. These had the objectives to create jobs and wealth amongst the people of the Eastern Province. I am sure the hon. Minister has such a centre in Petauke.

Mr Speaker: Continue!


Mr Lufuma: Sir, what measures has the Government in place to ensure that this massive infrastructure that cost a lot of money is utilised? How far have we attained the objective of job creation and wealth creation in the Eastern Province, given this massive infrastructure?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, it is good to see the hon. Member of Parliament for Kabompo, one of the old timers, back in the House. I appreciate the question. However it’s been misdirected to the Ministry of Agriculture. As this is one Government, the Ministries always know what the other ministries are doing.

When my colleague, the hon. Minister of Livestock, comes to the House with a ministerial statement, he will share with the House on issues of restocking and supporting infrastructure for the livestock industry. For the Eastern Province in particular, I can verify that this programme is working very well. Culturally, only a few tribes keep livestock and the majority do not. However, we are now having a cultural transformation for all of them to embrace the rearing of livestock. We are demonstrating that the keeping of livestock, especially cattle, improves household wealth and economic security.

Mr Speaker, this is not just specific to the Eastern Province. We have seen massive programmes in Luapula Province and the Northern Province where my traditional cousins are not eating all the cattle, but are keeping them so that it encourages wealth creation at family level.

Mr Speaker, I think that the real question that he was asking was what happens after this infrastructure is put in place. There must be maintenance. This does not only apply to livestock infrastructure, but all infrastructure in the country and I take note of his concern. Going forward, the amount of investment we put in the infrastructure must be commensurate with the amount of time and effort we apply to its maintenance so that we do not continue to put up the same infrastructure because it was not maintained.

 I appreciate that question and I thank you. We will continue to talk with you and if you have any other ideas, I will be happy to hear them. I am inviting you to come to my office so that we share these ideas. I am sure the same applies with the hon. Minister of Livestock. We might just enjoy a cup of tea even though we are in different political parties.


Mr Speaker: There is an invitation.


Mr Miyanda (Mapatizya): Mr Speaker, as a Zambian, most times, I feel sorry about what is happening across the country. Unfortunately, when you move around, people tell you that they are starving with a distance of less than 3 km between water and their homes. I am aware that the construction of twenty water points for irrigation would cost huge sums of money. However, would it not be cheaper if we started by tapping water? For example, we could create a green belt between Kafue and Lusaka where we could run taps of water from the Kafue River to Lusaka. Instead of actually starting twenty water points which will depend on rainfall, especially considering climate change that might result in inadequate rainfall? Would the hon. Minister look into that direction.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Hon. PF Member: Ema question, aya!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, on this side of the House, we have said that we have started looking at things with a different eye. We do not want to do things in isolation. In trying to have an integrated framework approach, we have to look at and identify projects that will have quick wins for the citizens first of all, but more so, for wealth creation for us to benefit from the investment that we are making. So, we should look at the return on investment. It is why the President, about two days ago was talking about how we are going to prioritise the road sector, especially the economic roads.

Mr Speaker, when we have economic activity going on in the country, the Government makes money. When the Government makes money, it looks after the citizens in terms of social programmes. So, when we are talking about bulk water supply in terms of massive irrigation points, it is not in isolation. We are looking at how we can create massive farm-blocks with a co-venture with linkages to the small-farmers so that everybody benefits both in terms of backward and forward linkages.

Sir, if we are going to be talking about agriculture making money in this country, we should have four hundred Zambeefs. For example, Zambeef buys beef, but does not keep cattle. It goes to farmers to buy cattle. It is creating wealth and jobs for the people in addition to being the distributor by taking away from the person that is keeping cattle from being bogged down by distribution and retail issues.

So, we have to look at agriculture in an organised manner and beyond just putting nshima on the table. It must become a business. It must be a business, especially for young people from twenty years so that it becomes a life career. It is why in collaboration with the Ministry of Higher Education and our agriculture training institutions, we are saying that we must respond to industry requirements.

Mr Speaker, farming must not be something you do when you have retired at sixty-five years and got a pension. You will be poor very quickly. Farming is supposed to be a career and that is why we are looking at it with fresh eyes so that we create wealth. We want Zambians to be rich. After all, that is the reason they voted us into the Government. We want them to be rich from agriculture.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kabanda (Serenje): Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister for that well-thought-out policy statement. I have no doubt in my mind that we shall attract a lot of investment in the agriculture sector.

Hon. UPND Member: Question!

Mr Kabanda: I listened to your address on television last night and some of these issues were addressed. However, it would appear that subsidising consumption through the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) has been a challenge for us as a country as well as a drain on the Treasury. I do not know how we can systematically disengage from this particular exercise through the weaning off of farmers that have been on this programme for a long time. If, for instance, I have received eight bags this year, I should receive four bags the next year and graduate the following year. Even in colleges, you graduate. You cannot be in college perpetually. I would like to get the hon. Minister’s response on this.

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member of Parliament for that very important question. I stated that we are going to review the whole FISP as well as the mandate of institutions such as the Food Reserve Agency (FRA). We are trying not to intervene in isolation in the value chain. We have to look at the cost of production and levels of subsidy, assess the level of consumption and the level of subsidy as well as the linkages to the market and how we support this value chain so that, it provides positive benefit for the country.

So, we are reviewing this whole value chain to try to see how we can intervene appropriately. whether at production level only or at both production and consumption levels .So that the farmer benefits and the most vulnerable citizens have a social safety net, but more so, that the country manages to earn revenue.

Our neighbours in the Congo DR have an appetite for importing food from the region and Zambia, as a neighbour, has to position itself as a country that should be the number one exporter of food stuffs. It is not going to happen by our wishful thinking. It will happen by the hon. Ministers of Finance, Commerce, Trade and Industry and Agriculture trying to get off-take agreements in advance so that our farmers know that what they will be producing is going  not just for local consumption, but for export and they can also earn more money. So, we have to look at the whole value chain from production up to the market and in between. The Government can then look back and see where it can intervene in terms of subsidy both at production and consumption points, but much more to support those that are most vulnerable in society.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Daka (Msanzala): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister, who presented a very good statement, how she will ensure that production of 90 per cent of our staple food, which comes from the small-scale farmers, is increased by mechanising it?
Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, the issue of mechanisation is extremely critical, especially at this point in time and the President crystallised it. He said he would like to see the common hoe go into the museum. This means that from now on, agriculture must be mechanised. My colleague, Hon. Lubinda, while he was still in the ministry initiated potential financing programmes with the Exim Bank of India to have financing facilities for tractors. We currently intend to initiate another programme so that we can have a mechanisation support facility for our farmers. These are issues that are real and receiving very active attention. Industrialisation is about mechanism. Unless we mechanise in agriculture, the yields will not improve
Sir, as regards the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP), from 2003 to date, we have about 1.6 million farmers. That is quantitative improvement, but in terms of quality, the improvement has been extremely minimal because yields per hectare are still under two or three tonnage, while in countries where they have mechanised and dealt with issues of research and development, yields are over eight tonnes per hectare. So, we have to mechanise to increase yields. Until we do that, there will be no money-making in the agriculture sector. So, the matter is not lost to us. It is a very serious matter and we intend to put up these mechanisation financing facilities for those who want to get into agriculture full time, especially for exports.
I thank you, Sir. 
Dr Chanda (Bwana Mkubwa): Mr Speaker, firstly, I want to commend the hon. Minister of Agriculture for talking about diversification of the food portfolio so that the country can move from being a maize or nshima addict to a diversified kind of food basket. She talked about the various foods that will compose the diversified food portfolio. West Africa has done very well with the yam. If you go to West Africa, the yam is one of the major staple foods that is easily grown. Does the hon. Minister of Agriculture have any plans to include yams in that food basket so that Zambians could benefit and de-politicise maize?
Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!
Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, that is a very important question and observation, especially about West Africa. We know that food is very tied to our own cultural practices and climate change. No wonder the theme of this year is that food and agriculture must change too to respond to the current demand. I think that we have to ask questions in this country. Why is mealie meal just 100 per cent maize? Why is it that people do not have a choice to get a blend or get mealie meal from other crops such as cassava or yams if they could be grown locally? So, we have to look at food in a different way and it should not just mean 100 per cent maize meal. This is because the nutritional values are also being challenged and as we go forward, we have to look at food in totality. So, that is a very important observation which is extremely welcome and I invite the hon. Member to my office for a cup of tea.
I thank you, Sir.
Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear! 
Mr Ngulube: Ema answer, ayo.
Mr Kafwaya (Lunte): Mr Speaker, I commend the hon. Minister for a very articulate statement. It was very loaded and had a lot of good information. I consider property ownership as one of the motivating factors of investment, and in this case, land ownership. I was encouraged when I heard the hon. Minister talk about an integrated approached to value creation. I would like to find out if her ministry will consider working with the Ministry of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection to facilitate or help the peasant farmers obtain land tenure.
Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, that is a very important question yet again. We are already working with my colleagues in the Ministry of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection because land is the number one input, especially for agriculture production. That is why I have also emphasised that we are going to establish farming blocks. We have been talking about farming blocks for a long time in this country. We have to make them a reality and some of them must become model farming blocks and demonstrate that an integrated approach can provide the necessary backward and forward linkages to support both small-scale and commercial farmers to create a win-win situation. Land has already been identified at various levels and even small-scale farmers are allowed to apply for this land.
 However, we also intend to identify land in every constituency. We want to take it down to the constituency level because that is where the good politics of the PF are. Further, this is to ensure that we identify land in constituencies to support the small-scale and co-venture farmers, apart from the big farming blocks. I think this is an on-going process and I know that my colleague the hon. Minister of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection is also looking at land issues with new eyes so that the Government should not stand in the way of investment. However, it must be a win-win situation for the Government to protect the land for the future generation, but at the moment, we should reap from the land. Saying I own so much land, but you are getting nothing from it is poverty. When you have land, it must earn you income and be productive to earn you wealth. Just looking at it and saying I have so much land is just sharing poverty. So, my colleague the hon. Minister of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection, other institutions and I want to do things differently so that land has the value it deserves and the return on investment in terms of agriculture.
I thank you, Sir. 
Mr Sikazwe (Mpulungu): Mr Speaker, as a result of the ban on the export of maize, we, in Mpulungu, have stocks of maize marooned at the harbour and we have stopped everybody from exporting it. The challenge is that we will have to guide those traders on what to do with the maize. Does the Government have any plans of, maybe, buying off that maize from the traders or could the hon. Minister advise the traders in case allowing them to export will cause a shortage in the country?
Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, the 2015/2016 farming season was a very unique year in the sense that we were in a region where there was a drought and scarcity of the maize grain. We were the only country that was lucky enough to have sufficient production of about 2.8 million metric tonnes and about 600,000 tonnes surplus. However, because of the market pool in the region, there was scarcity, and because of scarcity in the region, the traders began to export this maize very quickly to countries like Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Malawi and Zimbabwe. At the moment, we have about 1.3 million metric tonnes of maize in the country. However, the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) is only holding about 313,000 metric tonnes, way below the expected 500,000 metric tonnes of security stocks. Much as we realise that the region has a deficit, our priority at the moment and the reason the ban was effected was that even though we have maize …
Mr Speaker: The consultations on both the left and the right are loud.

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, we may have the grain in the country, but had the Government not intervened to effect the ban, we would have seen an unprecedented export, which would have threatened our own food security. So, in trying to address this situation, the ban was effected. This was aimed at allowing the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) to get into the market and buy for  the national security stock. The difference is that the private sector could go into the market very quickly even before the ideal moisture content of 12 per cent is reached. This is because it does not follow the rules. So, it bought very quickly even when the crop was still in the fields and yet to be harvested. By the time the FRA went into the market, we saw a lot of legal and illegal exports.

Therefore, to get the FRA to do what it needs to do, that is, to procure stocks, we effected the ban, and until the Government is comforted that we have food security, I am afraid this ban is going to stay. As I stated, we know that there are those who are exporting maize seed and maize bran, and we do not intend to stand in their way. However, working with our colleagues in the ministries of Finance, and Commerce, Trade and Industry, as well as the security wings, we have allowed for these exports to continue because we have put certain processes in place. For example, if the produce is going to Zimbabwe, there is a checkpoint at Kafue and Siavonga to ensure that some people do not smuggle maize grain as maize seed. We have such processes in place and they are working. The ban will remain in force whether it will mean going to buy from the peasant farmer or doing a buy-back with whoever has maize.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mecha (Chifunabuli): Mr Speaker, allow me to commend the hon. Minister for a well- articulated statement. The hon. Minister has mentioned the fact that inadequate extension services is one of the factors contributing to low agriculture growth, which currently stands at a paltry 2.2 per cent against the targeted 6 per cent.

Sir, I am aware that in Zambia, there are various players who are deploying various extension services effectively. Is there any intention by the ministry to harmonise the various extension services being deployed in the country for the purpose of accelerating wealth and job creation?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for his kind words. There are two ways of looking at this. The extension services officers directly under the Ministry of Agriculture are over 1,500 if I am not mistaken, the ratio of an extension officer to the number of farmers in the country is almost 1 to 10,000 when it should be much lower than that. So, firstly, we have to increase the numbers of actual extension workers in the field. The ones that share information on the best farming practices, rain patterns and seed patterns and so on and so forth. I think that this is an area that my ministry and the Government as a whole, is extremely committed to. This is because it needs infrastructure such as Information and Communication Technology (ICT). If one extension worker has over 10,000 farmers, how does he communicate effectively? It means that they must have technology for communication. They must also have technology to receive information for passing on to farmers very quickly, especially from headquarters. As I indicated in my statement, these issues are being attended to actively

Sir, I also think everybody is playing a role in the sector. Whether they are agro dealers, providers of fertiliser or seed and so on, what is important is that we harmonise and know what every player is doing in the sector, so that we all do not miss the target given through the services provided by extension officers. The target is to create food security, but much more wealth and jobs. All of us, especially Members of Parliament, have a responsibility to ensure that what we say wherever we are, whatever our political issues, is something that reflects our patriotism to the country to ensure that we get the investment in the country, especially in the agriculture sector.

Sir, we should not speak in a way that makes people begin to believe that they cannot come and invest in this country because we, the politicians, are always creating an impression that there is war in this country. We know that when there is war in a country, it cannot have food, and when there is no food, the whole country suffers. So, it is time all of us, especially those who are into agriculture and livestock, worked together and sent the right message. Let our politics be local, but let us send the right message to the world. Let us show the world that we are a mature country. Let us send a message that we are a mature people who can disagree, but investment is number one for our country. If we do not get investment, we are not going to grow this country. We may be Members of Parliament today, but our children may not, and they will be relegated to poverty. There is no honour or dignity in poverty. So, let us create wealth for our country. We can do this by embracing ventures that create wealth and not glorify poverty. The President has given the vision. Therefore, agriculture must create jobs and wealth. As Minister, my job is to be the champion for the ministry and the country, but championing investment is number one. When will someone who is benefitting from the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) start driving a Lamborghini? Those are the issues we have come here to discuss.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Michelo (Bweengwa): Mr Speaker, I am sure the hon. Minister is aware that from the time the Patriotic Front (PF) Government came into power, the number of hungry people has increased.

Hon. Government Members: Aah! Question!

Mr Michelo: Sir, I think that we should be realistic when we talk. We have facts before us and they show that the Zambian people are hungrier than before. If I remember correctly, last year, a number of farmers paid for their e-Voucher System. To date, these farmers have not received their fertiliser. What is the Government going to do about this issue to make sure that our farmers who paid for these packs ,but never received them are given first priority?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, firstly, let me welcome the hon. Member to the House. It is my hope that in future, if he gives wild statements, he should lay the evidence on the Table so that we can counter it.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, I think that in measuring the wealth of the country, there are various indicators that are employed. Just a few years ago, we were reporting that over 5,000 cars are imported into Zambia everyday, People are not buying these cars with stones. They are using money. When we see this entire pool of shopping malls in the country, it is because the people putting them up have carried out a study and they can ascertain that there is extra income that makes people go to shopping malls to eat and shop from there.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Sir, I think that when you hear that the FISP is expected to cater for 1.6 million farmers, it is an indication that there is an appetite, not just from the farmers, but for the Government also to continue to support people at a smaller level. So, for me, there are all these indicators. People, especially the men, are dressing better and those are indications that the country is doing well. Even my dear hon. Member of Parliament from Dundumwezi is dressing very well.


Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, on a serious matter,...


Mr Speaker: I think you will pursue that compliment over tea.


Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, it is, indeed, a compliment.

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, numbers do not lie. The Zambian economy, on aggregate, has grown, as can be seen from increased economic activities. If you get on a South African Airways flight, you will see a lot of foreigners trying to come into Zambia. There must be something nice happening here.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Therefore, let us also see what they are seeing. We should not just let foreigners come and see the potential this country has, as was the case with the mines because we will miss the point and not invest in sectors like agriculture. We will be obsessed with politicking and forget that we have to invest too, even as hon. Members of Parliament. So, I think that it is very important that we start looking at things with fresh eyes.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: On this side of the House, we mean well. We want engagement and ideas. We do not want hon. Members to use the Floor of this House just to settle political scores. We want ideas that can work because when things work for Zambia, they will work for all of us.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, I think to say that since the Patriotic Front (PF) came into power, there are more people who are hungry in this country is not correct and extremely misleading. We have to be sincere. I have been on the winning side and on the losing side and I am very pleased to be back on the winning side.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: With this appointment to my current portfolio, which is my fifth appointment as Minister, I know that things are getting better. Where there have been mistakes, we can talk about them.


Mr Speaker: Order! Order!

Ms Siliya: If the questioner has ideas, I extend him an invitation for tea to my office so that he can share with me where these people who are so hungry are now, whom we are failing to address. Even in my own constituency, if I compare the situation of fifteen years ago to-date, I see that girls, men and women are all dressing better. Even houses have better roofing sheets. I have never seen so many roofing sheets in Petauke as I have seen in the last few years. This is all directly linked to the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP). However, let me state this …


Mr Speaker: Order!

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, we do concede that, yes, the number of farmers on the FISP has, indeed, increased that is, quantitatively, but we are saying let us deal with the quality issues now. These are issues of crop diversification, increased yields per hectare, marketing and agro-processing.  Once again, I am happy to receive from those who have brilliant minds ideas on a one-on-one arrangement  but not on the Floor of this House. I want to hear from those who are really committed and believe that we should change our country.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kamboni (Kalomo Central): Mr Speaker, the e-voucher system was intended to be a pilot project and has faced a lot of challenges, which sometimes make the intended goals seem to be a bridge too far. Since this was a pilot project, has it been analysed or evaluated and if so, what have you found out? If the Government has found it workable, what improvement is the ministry making to the project because, so far, it leaves much to be desired?

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, we hear of the miracles of Rwanda and all this is anchored on Information and Communication Technology (ICT). I think that in the agriculture sector and all sectors in this country, we have to embrace technology. Yes, technology is scary, especially if you are BBC (born before computers).


Ms Siliya: It is scary, but we have to embrace it, especially in agriculture because …

Mr Mwiimbu: Who is BBC?


Prof. Luo: It is a general statement.

Mr Speaker: Hon. Minister, continue.

Ms Siliya: Mr Speaker, I know these are very emotive issues, but I am saying that to a certain generation, technology is always a scary issue. Even up to now, many of us when we have to do anything on a cellular phone, we go to our children. All of us do that and it is just the reality.

Mr Speaker, going forward, we will not be in these positions forever. Our children know technology better and, therefore, we have to do the right thing and prepare the foundation to embrace technology now. In agriculture, we realise that when we compare the challenges of the e-voucher and conventional system, the latter leaves much to be desired because it has a human factor in terms of distribution. We are talking about investing millions of Kwacha in the agriculture sector, but we have not seen the commensurate returns on that investment. If we can go to as much as 1.1 million farmers under FISP, but production is only 2.8 million metric tonnes, clearly something is not working. This is why we have said that in order to increase efficiency, we need to embrace technology. The e-voucher system was in thirty-nine districts in the last 2015/2016 farming season. We intend to take it to sixty-four districts in the 2016/2017 farming season and to be at 100 per cent in the 2017/2018 farming season.

Mr Lubinda: Hear, hear!

Ms Siliya: Look, I think that we have to allow citizens to make choices. Under the e-voucher system, the Government provides about K1,700 and the farmer provides K400, making it K2,100. This provides the farmer with an opportunity to deal with the best agro-dealer in terms of prices and quality of inputs as well as being able to decide what inputs he/she wants. It can be maize, cotton and so on and so forth. So, it gives the farmer the choice to determine the input pack.

Yes, I concede that the new system has had some teething problems. Some farmers have not known how to use the technology. In the production of the e-voucher cards by some banks, there have been faults. In some cases, pin numbers have been missing. Of course, sometimes the farmer has not known that the e-voucher card is not just for maize, but for other crops as well. We have taken note of all these issues in our information sharing system, including enlightening hon. Member of Parliaments such as the questioner.

Mr Speaker, let me state that what I said earlier was in no manner meant to demean the hon. Member of Parliament because what he asked is an important question. However, I have to make the point that technology is always scary for all of us, but we have to embrace it going forward. As a result of technology, we have seen miracles in South Korea, Singapore and many other developed countries. It is because these countries embraced new technology in agriculture and that is the point.

So, this Government is committed to the e-voucher programme and that is why we are saying in the shortest possible time, this country needs to have 100 per cent optic fibre coverage so that the e-voucher is a reality to all parts of the country. Farmers cannot go to a point-of-sale (POS) electronic device if there is no phone connectivity in their area. If we achieve this, jobs will be created in the telecom, banking, agricultural, trade and agro-processing sectors. The idea is not just to put nshima on the table, but also to create jobs and wealth for the country.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!



Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, I am aware that in August, 2016, the Constitutional Court made a ruling pertaining to the constitutional breaches by this Government of allowing hon. Ministers and hon. Deputy Minister to continue in office after the dissolution of Parliament. The Constitutional Court ruled that those hon. Members who held those positions have to pay back the money. I would like to find out from Her Honour the Vice-President when her colleagues in Government are going to pay back to the people of Zambia the money they got through the unconstitutional continuous stay in office.


Mr Speaker: Order! Order!

There is just one Vice-President and she will respond.


The Vice-President (Mrs Wina): Mr Speaker, the question verges on sub judice because we are all aware that this case is still before the courts of law.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Hon. Members rose.

Mr Speaker: Order! Order!

Sit down. If you have been following events in the press, you are aware that the Attorney-General has gone back to the Constitutional Court to reopen the matter.

Hon. UPND Members: Aah!

Mr Speaker: That is the position.


Mr Sikazwe (Mpulungu): Mr Speaker, may I find out from Her Honour the Vice-President regarding yesterday’s statement by the hon. Minister of Home Affairs in this august House that his ministry was still investigating the cause of fires in markets, lodges and other institutions that occurred immediately after the results of the general elections were released. This being a very serious issue which is threatening the security of this nation, i would like to get your comment over this issue.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, indeed, the sporadic fires that have emerged in our country is of serious concern. The police and other investigative wings are still investigating these fires, but preliminary reports indicate that some of the fires are as a result of politically motivated acts of arson.

Ms Kapata: Eh!

Mr Mwamba: Armageddon.

The Vice-President: Some of the fires are accidental, but those that are influenced are as a result of politics and need to be investigated even further.

Mr Mwamba: Kube katafye

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, Members of this honourable House are aware that during the Second World War, the Third Reich Government developed a much sustained malicious propaganda. People believed the lies because of the systematic hate speeches against one ethnic grouping in that country, the Jews. The country saw many incidents of arson including sporadic fires like what we see in Zambia today. These fires were targeted at Jewish libraries and Jewish books were burnt, at the end of the day, 6 million Jews were exterminated.

Mr Speaker, I am saying this just to show that hate speech and sustained malicious propaganda can cause havoc in the country. I hope at the end of the investigations, this may not be found true. For, if it is, indeed, true, then we are sending  a bad signal to the outside world. I hope that as leaders, in the House and in our communities, we will ensure that we prevail over our followers to preserve peace in our country and to ensure that law and order is observed.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mweetwa (Choma Central): Mr Speaker, on Tuesday 18th October, 2016 will be a National Day of Prayers, Fasting, Repentance and Reconciliation. Now, this year’s day comes at a time when there is so much police brutality and police political intolerance as evidenced in the following; today in the Post Newspaper  headlines police tear-gassed Monze …


Mr Mweetwa: … all because Hakainde Hichilema (HH) and Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba (GBM) were passing through going to a funeral.

Hon. PF Members: Ah!

Mr Mwiimbu: Yes!

Mr Mweetwa: That is an instance of police…


Mr Speaker: Order, order!

Mr Mweetwa: … political intolerance. There is also the arrest of HH and GBM in Luanshya and subsequent brutal beating of citizens of Luanshya, the harassment of journalists and possible arrests of the directors and management or proprietors of Prime Television in connection with a brief conference and footage thereof demanded that HH and GBM had, to link and incriminate them subsequently …

Mr Mwamba: Tabonfya kaili.

Mr Mweetwa: … to arrest them. I am also aware about the hot pursuit …

Hon. PF Members: By who, iwe?

Mr Speaker: Order, order!

Mr Mweetwa: … by some security agencies …

Ms Kapata: Nifinshi ule landapo?

Mr Speaker: Order, order?

Mr Mweetwa: The hot pursuit by some security agencies on journalists that they would like to turn as State witnesses whom they believe have evidence against HH and in return reward them with jobs in the foreign service.

Hon. PF Members: Ah!

Mr Mwiimbu: Yes!


Mr Speaker: Order, order!

Mr Mweetwa: Your Honour Madam Vice-President, what measures or acts have you put or proposed to put in place to ensure that you demonstrate love and care commensurate with what this day is supposed to mean. So, that it is not turned into a ceremonial and political event where political sinners go to cleanse themselves. As a true Christian, I can tell you …

Hon. PF Members: Ah!


Mr Mweetwa: … that according to Christian values and teachings, you cannot seek the face of the Almighty when you have running battles with your neighbour or brother as is the case.


 What are you saying?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, 18th October, 2016 is a very important and milestone day in Zambia’s history.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: I hope this will be the day when all of us, including the hon. Member of Parliament for Choma Central, will come and congregate with us all at the designated place.

Mr Speaker, I have said before that the Head of State of this country does not order the police to beat up fellow politicians. That is not done and he never engaged himself in such an exercise. What the police do out there and if they exercise maximum force, the President is not involved. In fact, there have been times when the President has castigated the head of the police for some of his overzealous police officers who go beyond the limit of their work. I do recollect that last week there was a question on the Director of Komboni Radio where I responded to the question in a certain manner. I was not well informed, but when I collected more information on the incident, I found that, indeed, the police over did their work …

UPND Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: … and I do apologise to Mrs Nyirenda for what she went through. It was not necessary.

Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, as for the event of the 18th of October, 2016, it gives us an opportunity, as leaders, to come together and dialogue over the misunderstandings that seem to divide us as well as the whole country. It also gives us an opportunity to let us use the day to unite and to thank God for what we have enjoyed so far. This country has not gone to war because of elections. This country is going to receive good rains. Our country has had good harvest. As you heard from the hon. Minister of Agriculture, there has been a shortage of almost 9 million metric tonnes of maize and that 40 million people are at risk due to the food deficit throughout the Southern African Development Community (SADC), but God has been kind to Zambia and we are surviving.

 I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mrs Mwape (Mkushi North): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from Her Honour the Vice-President how safe the country is in as far as food security is concerned considering the fact that we are approaching the rainy season.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I believe that if the hon. Member was listening properly, he would have known that the hon. Minister of Agriculture has already addressed this matter. Our country is food-secure especially in the areas of domestic demand. Therefore, the hon. Member should not worry about the food stocks in the country.

 I thank you, Sir.

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from Her Honour the Vice-President whether or not and where the Patriotic Front (PF) Government draws the legitimacy of reopening the Constitutional Court judgments considering that the documents “The Constitution of Zambia Act, No. 1 of 2016 and the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Act, No. 2 of 2016” I am holding in my hands indicate that the Constitutional Court is a court of final jurisdiction. I would appreciate it if Her Honour the Vice-President can furnish me with an answer to that question. Her Honour allow me to terminate by congratulating her for owning up and for apologising for what happened to Lesa Nyirenda as it ought to be. I commend you, Madam.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, the Constitutional Court has a mandate to revisit a decision that it has made. Therefore, that is all I know.

 I thank you, Sir.

Mr A. B. Malama (Nchelenge): Mr Speaker, in July, 2012, our working Government made pronouncements on the construction of the mathematics and science college in Nchelenge Constituency and a trades school in Mwense District. I know that a Trades college has been completed. I would like to know when the construction of the mathematics and science college will commence in Nchelenge Constituency.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, the Government has a desire to construct science and mathematics colleges. As for now, three sites were identified; one in Katete, the other one in Kabompo and the third one in Nalolo although, they have not yet been established. We, therefore, hope that after the construction of the three colleges, we shall accelerate the programme and consider Nchelenge.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1045 hours until 1100 hours.


Mr Kamondo (Mufumbwe): Madam Speaker, I am sure Her Honour the Vice-President will remember that during the campaigns, her biggest concern was that the farmers, especially in Kaminzekenzeke were not paid in time.  I would like to find out from Her Honour the Vice-President, whom I respect so much, why the farmers have not yet been paid their money from that time to date for the maize which they sold to the Food Reserve Agency (FRA)? I seek her indulgence to inform this House and the concerned farmers when they will be paid.

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, the hon. Member for Mufumbwe should have taken advantage of the ministerial statement by the hon. Minister of Agriculture. However, I would like the hon. Member to perhaps, submit a Question for Oral Answer that can be addressed more fully by the hon. Minister of Agriculture.

 I thank you, Madam.

Mr Daka (Msanzala): Madam Speaker, first of all, I want to say that I went to Kalabo Secondary about forty-two years ago. Whilst there, it used to take me two days to move between Mongu and Kalabo on Gandile bus from Lusaka to Mongu. Then, on a barge from Mongu via Lwanginga River into Kalabo, but now, it only takes thirty-five minutes. Two weeks ago, I was in Kalabo to witness fifty years existence of Kalabo Secondary School. I would like to find out from Her Honour the Vice-President what economic value this road is going to add in view of the booming economy in Angola.

 Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear! Ema Questions, aya! 

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, the economic value of that road to the province and the whole country cannot be overemphasised. The Mongu/Kalabo Road has revolutionised the Western Province.  It is through that road that a lot of economic activities are taking place.

Madam Speaker, the people of Mongu have complained about services, particularly the lack of provision of adequate foodstuffs in Shoprite on certain weekends, simply because Angolans drive into Mongu with their 4x4 motor vehicles to buy all the items in the shop. This simply means that the people of the province can trade with Angola using the Mongu/Kalabo Road.

It is a God-given gift to the people of the Western Province and we should all be happy to have it because now we can save some money. Instead of paying K150 to travel from Mongu to Kalabo by minibus or bus, people are paying K30. What this means for the people of the area is that more money is now going in their pocket ...

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: … instead of otherwise.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Chalikosa (Mpika Central): Madam Speaker, on 1st October, 2016, we were informed, in the early hours of the morning, that fire had gutted Chilonga School of Nursing.

Madam Speaker, the institution is in need of rehabilitation and we are trying to figure out how this can be done in the shortest possible time. I would like to find out from Her Honour the Vice-President whether the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) will help seeing that Chilonga School of Nursing was providing key personnel training in the health sector.

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, indeed, this was a tragedy not only for the people of Mpika, also, for all Zambians because that training institute accommodated a number of students from all over the country.

To lose such property is a tragedy to the country and I hope that authorities at the institute have lodged the case with the police and the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) because these are the types of disasters that the unit deals with.
Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Ndalamei (Sikongo): Madam Speaker, yesterday, the hon. Minister of Home Affairs claimed that there were no political prisoners in Zambia. However, Afuma Mombotwa, Likando Pelekelo and Sylvester Kalaluka are in prison right now. Are they not political prisoners?

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, these three people that the hon. Member mentioned have not been sentenced. They are still remandees in a correctional facility.

I thank you, Madam.

Mr Phiri (Mkaika): Madam Speaker, I would like to find out from Her Honour the Vice-President …

Mr Chiteme: Dununa!

Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order, hon. Member!

Mr Phiri: The people of Katete are very thankful for the construction of a dam in the district. Previously, water was a challenge but, now, we have plenty of it. In outlying areas, however, there is still some challenge of a lack of clean water.

Madam Speaker, I would like to find out from Her Honour the Vice-President whether there are any immediate plans to help the people and the livestock of Chimutende and Mkaika Wards with water.

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, the Government is aware of the scarcity of water in many parts of Zambia, including Katete. The Ministry of Local Government and Housing is embarking on a programme to construct boreholes in most districts of the Eastern Province and I believe that Katete will benefit from it.
Water resources in the country will soon be managed differently. Once we have a Ministry of Water and Sanitation and Environmental Protection, we will get more information on what this Government has planned to address the water deficit in some of our districts.

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Mbulakulima (Milenge): Madam Speaker, October, 18th is, indeed, an important day. Now, with the revelation, by my younger brother from Choma Central that he is born again …


Mr Mbulakulima: … and bearing in mind that attendance to these prayers is open, will there be some deliberate move to invite people like Hon. Mweetwa and the entire United Party for National Development (UPND)?

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, whenever we hold national functions, all leaders of political parties are invited. This is a church service where we will invite all leaders. However, to attend church, one does not need an invitation because it is a calling and a conviction upon oneself to go and pray. If, however, it will help to extend an invitation to the hon. Member for Choma Central, I will personally take it.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: I will take that invitation to him to come and pray with us. This is an important day of reconciliation. Let us put all these issues of police brutality, which is not only on the United Party for National Development (UPND) members, aside.


The Vice-President: If something is of national importance, we should dialogue over it and come to an understanding of how we can improve the way the police enforce the law in the country.

Madam Speaker, I look forward to Hon. Mweetwa’s participation in the prayers on 18th October, 2016.

Mr Syakalima interjected.

The Vice-President: Yes, as the hon. Member has said, we can pray alone. However, those that want to pray with us are most welcome.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mrs Jere (Lumezi): Madam Speaker, in the valley parts of Lumezi Constituency, there are serious reports of hunger. People are feeding on mangoes …

Mr Mwiimbu: Ah!

Mrs Jere: Of course, it is not everybody. Some households are eating mangoes because there is no other food. In view of the impending rainy season, I do not know what measures Her Honour the Vice-President has put in place to address the situation because once it starts raining, Mwanya will become closed. No one will be able to go there. Even if people wanted to deliver food, they would not be able to go there once the rains start. The three areas affected by hunger are Chitungulu, Mwanya and Kazembe. Can Her Honour the Vice-President tell me what measures she has put in place to mitigate the impact of this situation?

The Vice-President: Madam Speaker, issues of that nature usually come before the District Disaster Management Committees. That is the first reporting centre. After that, the request is forwarded to our office at the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU). So, perhaps the hon. Member of Parliament, being new in the House, did not know the procedure of accessing support for her people. Definitely, relief food is there for the people in her constituency and this will be delivered immediately.

I thank you, Madam.





The Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mrs Mwanakatwe): Madam Speaker, I beg to present a Bill entitled the Patents Bill, 2016.  The object of this Bill is to:

(a) provide for the protection and administration of patents;

(b) provide for the patentability of inventions;

(c) provide for the process for obtaining letters patent for an invention;

(d) provide for the restriction, publication and communication of patents;

(e) promote the use of patented information and technological knowledge;

(f) provide for contractual and compulsory licences;

(g) provide for the use and acquisition of inventions by the Government;

(h) promote and encourage innovative and inventive activities and local generation of technologies;

(i) provide for the protection of utility models and the grant of a utility model certificate;

(j) give effect to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property 1883, the Patent Co-operation Treaty 1970, the Harare Protocol on Patents and Industrial Designs adopted on December 10,1982 and the World Trade Organisation Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, 1994,  and any other relevant international treaty or convention to which Zambia is a State Party;

(k)  repeal and replace the Patents Act 1958; and

(l) provide for matters concerned with or incidental to the foregoing.

I thank you, Madam.

Madam First Deputy Speaker: The Bill stands referred to the Committee on Economic Affairs, Energy and Labour. The Committee is required to submit its report on the Bill to the House by Thursday, 3rd November, 2016. Hon. Members who wish to make submissions on the Bill are free to do so within the programme of work of the Committee.

 I thank you, Madam




Mr Ngulube (Kabwe Central): Madam Speaker, I beg to move that the House do adopt the Report of the Parliamentary Select Committee appointed to scrutinise the presidential appointment of Mrs Fulata Lillian Shawa-Siyunyi to serve as the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) laid on the Table of the House on 13th October, 2016.

Madam First Deputy Speaker: Is the Motion seconded?

Mr Kansoso (Solwezi West): Madam Speaker, I beg to second the Motion.

Mr Ngulube: Madam Speaker, the appointment of Mrs Fulata Lillian Shawa-Siyunyi is made pursuant to Article 180(1) of the Constitution of Zambia Cap 1 of the Laws of Zambia which states:

“There shall be a Director of Public Prosecutions who shall be appointed by the President, subject to ratification by the National Assembly.”

Further Article 180(2) on the qualifications for the appointment as the DPP states:

“A person qualifies for the appointment as the Director of Public Prosecutions if that person:

(a) has experience in undertaking criminal trials; and

(b)  is qualified to be appointed as a Judge.”

Madam Speaker, the term of reference of your Committee was to scrutinise the presidential appointment of Mrs Fulata Lillian Shawa-Siyunyi to serve as the DPP. In carrying out its mandate, your Committee requested memoranda from relevant State security agencies, namely the Zambia Police Service, the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) and the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC). Your Committee also sought views from relevant professional bodies like the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) and other stakeholders, namely, the Human Rights Commission (HRC), Transparency International Zambia (TIZ) and the hon. Minister of Justice who was representing the appointing authority. 

Madam Speaker, your Committee interviewed the nominee and carefully scrutinised her curriculum vitae. The various stakeholders who appeared before your Committee tendered both oral and written submissions. These submissions helped your Committee to not only understand the requirements of the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, but also the suitability of the nominee to serve as the Director of Public Prosecutions. It is noteworthy that the DPP is responsible for prosecuting all criminal offences and may in so doing, initiate, take over or discontinue any matter at any stage before judgement has been passed. It is for this reason that Article 180(2) (a) requires a person to be appointed to this office to have experience in criminal trials. In carrying out his or her mandate, the DPP shall not be subject to the direction or control of any person or authority. Considering the critical role the DPP plays in criminal prosecutions and the need for the DPP to carry out his or her functions independently, it is imperative that the person appointed to the office is of high integrity and has the capacity to act independently. In this regard, your Committee resolved that only a competent person with unquestionable integrity, diligence, eminence, sound character and above all, commitment to justice and the promotion of the rule of law should be appointed the DPP.

Madam Speaker, your Committee learned that the nominee was born on 17th April, 1973. She graduated from the University of Zambia (UNZA) with a Bachelor of Laws degree in 1995 and is a legal practitioner with twenty years at the Bar. She was admitted to practice as an advocate of the High Court of Zambia in November 1996. The nominee also holds a Master’s degree in International, Humanitarian and Human Rights Law from Raoul Wallenburg Institute in Lund, Sweden and an advanced diploma in Legislative Drafting from the Zambia Institute of Advanced Legal Education (ZIALE).

Madam Speaker, with regard to work experience, the nominee started her twenty-year long career in Public Service as an advocate in the Attorney-General’s Chambers in the Civil Litigation Department where she worked for less than a year before joining the then Directorate of Public Prosecutions, now the National Prosecutions Authority (NPA) as a State Advocate in 1997. The nominee rose through the ranks to the position of Chief State Advocate by 2008. The work of the nominee involved, undertaking criminal prosecutions, criminal appeals, implementing the authority’s policies, providing State advocates with technical guidance and practical assistance in respect of criminal trials and appeals and heading the authority as well as prosecutorial services throughout Zambia. The nominee is currently serving as the Acting DPP and has, among other things, co-ordinated the operationalisation of the National Prosecutions Authority Act No. 34 of 2010 as well as superintended the incorporation of the public prosecutors from law enforcement agencies into the NPA. The nominee has over nineteen years experience of undertaking criminal trials, some of which were complex cases.

Madam Speaker, the nominee’s commitment to procedural and substantive justice as tenets of protecting an accused persons rights has been evident in many cases she has handled, including the case of Timothy Ngulube vs. the people, Supreme Court of Zambia Judgment, 2007. In that case, the nominee indicated to the Supreme Court that she did not support the appellant’s conviction on a charge of defilement because the provision to the section creating the offence had not been explained to the accused.
Madam Speaker, in addition, in the case of Vincent Macheleta vs. the People, the Supreme Court of Zambia Judgement, 2015, the Supreme Court of Zambia, sitting at Kabwe, applauded the nominee for her submissions against the conviction of the appellant, Mr Mwacheleta. In that case, the nominee had indicated that the prosecution at High Court level had failed to prove the case against the appellant beyond all reasonable doubt should have been decided in the appellant’s favour. Indeed, her training in human rights is a great advantage and she is able to carry out her functions while adhering to the rights of accused persons to this end. Her conduct as illustrated in the cases cited above, has been exemplary.
Madam Speaker, your Committee wishes to applaud the appointing authority for appointing the nominee, who is a woman, to this very important office. This will not only help the country attain the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Protocol requirement of 50 per cent female representation in decision-making positions, but also the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal Number five on gender equality and the empowerment of girls and women.
Madam Speaker, your Committee notes with satisfaction that all the relevant State agencies did not find any criminal corruption or drug related record against the nominee. Further, all the witnesses who appeared before your Committee supported the appointment of the nominee as the DPP. In addition, some of the witnesses described the nominee as confident, knowledgeable, and determined and a highly conscious and focused lawyer who would ably handle the responsibility of the very high and important Office of the DPP. Therefore, your Committee recommends that the House do now ratify the Presidential appoint of Mrs Fulata Lillian Shawa-Siyunyi to serve as the DPP.
Madam Speaker, in conclusion, the members of the Committee wish to place on record their gratitude to you for appointing them to serve on the Select Committee. Your Committee also thanks the Office of the Clerk of the National Assembly for the services and advice rendered to it during the deliberations. Your Committee further thanks the State security and investigative agencies and other stakeholder institutions for the oral and written submissions which assisted your Committee in making an informed recommendation to the House.
I beg to move.
Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!
Madam First Deputy Speaker: Does the seconder wish to speak now or later?
Mr Kasonso: Now, Madam Speaker.
Madam Speaker, let me begin by thanking you for according me this opportunity to second this Motion. I wish to also thank the mover for the able manner in which he has moved this Motion. The mover has adequately covered all the salient points upon which your Committee supports the ratification of the nominee to serve as the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP). Therefore, in seconding this Motion, I commend the appointing authority for selecting a suitably qualified and experienced person to the office. The fact that the appointee has served in the Directorate of Public Prosecutions, now the National Prosecutions Authority, for nineteen years and rose through the ranks from State Advocate to chief State Advocate attests to the fact that she was one of the most qualified persons to be appointed the DPP. This made the work of your Committee much lighter as all the witnesses strongly supported her ratification.
Madam Speaker, your Committee welcomes the gesture of rewarding hardworking and long serving officers in the Public Service because it will help motivate public officers to perform their duties efficiently and diligently.
Madam Speaker, as I stated earlier, the mover of the Motion has sufficiently covered the salient points upon which your Committee supports the ratification of the nominee. It, therefore, remains for me to thank the Chairperson of your Committee for the adept, objective and fair manner in which he presided over the meetings and deliberations of your Committee. May I also extend my sincere thanks to all the members of your Committee for their professionalism during your Committee’s deliberations.
I thank you, Madam.
Mr Mukata (Chilanga): Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Members who have spoken before me.
Madam Speaker, the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) is a very critical office in the sense that it deals with the liberties of citizens and the enforcement of the different laws relating to crimes across the country. Therefore, the choice of the head of this important institution and the attributes of that particular person are very critical. I am very pleased to note from the case Hon. Ngulube has cited that the candidate has demonstrated independence of mind and professionalism. These are attributes that seem to be short in many people today.
Madam Speaker, I worked with this nominee personally when I was Minister of Justice and also when I was a private practitioner. I can vouch for her competence and professionalism. The principle of promoting career advancement rather than plucking people from outside to take over positions must be entrenched to encourage these professionals to stay hoping that they will, at least, ascend to some higher office of some sort.
Madam Speaker, the environment under which this office operates leaves much to be desired. In effect, they tend to take away from the issues that would tend to protect or underpin human rights. We have problems of a lack of prosecutors.
   I am aware that at some point, the Government transfered public prosecutors who were under the police to the Director of Public Prosecutor’s (DPP) chambers but, unfortunately, most of them did not move from the police. They preferred to stay. So, there are serious problems of human resources. There are attempts also, to devolve. I am aware that the DPP’s chambers have established some offices in provinces, but the pace at which this is being undertaken leaves much to be desired.

Madam Speaker, incarceration is not really something that anyone can long for. Therefore, speedy trials are very critical. People must be brought before courts within reasonable time. They must be tried and cases processed within reasonable time. Unfortunately, because of a lack of human resource, you will find that inmates or remandees who are committed to the High Court have to wait for over twelve months. Even when they appear before the courts, there will be adjournments on account of the fact that a particular lawyer is inundated with so many cases. That also tends to affect the competence of the lawyers. If you have a backlog of one hundred cases on your table, surely, the level at which you will discharge your duties is rather diluted. To attract human resource, the Secretary to the Cabinet or, maybe, the hon. Minister of Justice needs to really push the agenda for improvement of the conditions of service for these colleagues. Most of them tend to get back to private practice where it seemingly, has greener pastures. It is very critical that we motivate these personalities.

Madam Speaker, one other issue I would want to bring to the attention of the nominee and the hon. Minister is the congestion in prisons. That has something to do with the processing of cases between the Judiciary and the DPP’s chambers for the reasons that I have underpinned. Constitutionally, that is under Article 15. The Bill of Rights is an upfront to human rights because if you go to these prisons, you will find that people have to take turns to sleep. Others have to sit whilst others are sleeping. How do you apportion sleep? Surely, how can a person sleep in quotas? It is like sharing food. These are things that we can perhaps deal with. I am aware that we are a member of the United Nations African Institute for the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders (UNAFRI) in Africa which has undertaken reforms on alternative sentencing, for instance, community service for those with lesser offences. I think that, through the hon. Minister of Justice, the Minister of Home Affairs and the DPP’s Office, something can be done because they do provide the expertise in reforms.

Madam Speaker, overly, there are quite a number of challenges. One such a challenge which I need to highlight is a problem of the appeals of persons who are on death row and have appealed to the Supreme Court, but their case records have been lost. The problem is like in a “catch-22 situation.” You will find that the file is not there but, at least, the warranty for remand of a person on a murder charge will be there. It is a problem if a person appeals and there is no court record. The DPP’s Office needs to deal with these issues. Let us remind ourselves that one of the functions of the DPP is to safeguard against abuse of the legal process. Having been in practice for almost the same time as the nominee, I have come across experiences where the law sometimes, tends to be abused. This is where a law is fashioned to deal with specific individuals. You will only have that law at some particular moment in time. It can jump from the grass and bite the same person who fashioned it. I remember the non-bailable theft of motor vehicles. So, we must remind ourselves, including the public that everybody who is under the law is a potential jailbird or offender. One day, any one of us can be a guest in those prisons. So, we have a collective duty to make sure that that potential destination is improved on.

Madam Chairperson, for these reasons, I want to support …

Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order! Hon. Member, I have to correct you. When I am sitting here, I am Madam Speaker. Time will come when I will step down from here, then I will be Madam Chairperson. For the benefit of the new hon. Members of the House, the correct address is Madam Speaker.

You may continue.

Mr Mukata: Madam Speaker, as you rightly pointed out yesterday, we are still warming up ...


Mr Mukata: … to the good factor of having you in that Chair.


Mr Mukata: Madam Speaker, the other concern that I would want to air out is that perhaps, it could have been tidier if the tribunal report for the former DPP had come out so that we close the door on that subject. I am speaking objectively and my fear is that the report may recommend reinstatement. Then, we would have a problem. I am speaking in abstract here. I think it is important that we have that report and close the matter. We are dealing with liberties of people and I think that the natural rules of justice demand that a person who is arraigned or indicted …

Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order! Hon. Member for Chilanga, we have a Motion before us and this is to deal with a Report of the Select Committee on the appointment of the DPP. Let us not stray into issues that are not before this House.

You may continue.

Mr Mukata: Madam Speaker, I will conclude by just placing on record my support and I think I speak on behalf of a number of my colleagues. We just hope that she will make us proud and live to fulfil the aspirations and protect the Constitution. She must also remember that she is the DPP for all Zambians and that she will implement the Constitution and protect it to the letter.

I thank you, Madam.

Mr Mweetwa (Choma Central): Madam Speaker, I thank you very much for according me this opportunity to debate on a Motion that is on the Floor of this House. Allow me to take this opportunity to render my maiden speech for this particular session before I can delve into the details of the Motion.

Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order! You may not do so. There is a segment under which it is allowed for you to combine your maiden speech and the President’s Address. For this particular Motion, you may not combine it with your maiden speech.

You may continue.

Mr Mweetwa: Madam Speaker, I have not yet given my maiden speech, so I cannot continue.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

The Deputy Minister for Eastern Province (Mr M. Zulu): Madam Speaker, I rise to contribute to the debate on the Floor in relation to the nominee, noting that the office of the DPP is a very noble Office, established by our Constitution.

Madam Speaker, allow me to refer to Article 180(3) which states that:

“The Director of Public Prosecutions is the chief prosecutor for the Government and head of the National Prosecutions Authority”

Madam Speaker, our Constitution establishes this very noble office. It creates the Office of the DPP and puts it in overall charge of all prosecutions in Zambia. It further requires that the person who holds such a position should be of integrity and in a position to protect public interest. This is enshrined in Article 180(7) which states as follows:

“The Director of Public Prosecutions shall not be subject to the direction or control of a person or an authority in the performance of the functions of that office, except that the Director of Public Prosecutions shall have regard to the public interest, administration of justice, the integrity of the judicial system and the need to prevent and avoid the abuse of the legal process.”

 Madam Speaker, whereas the Constitution states that the position of the DPP is not subject to any question from any person or authority, it also puts a duty upon it to act in public interest, administer justice and the preservation of the integrity of the judicial system at all times and avoid abuse of the legal process.

 Madam Speaker, you note that in the last appointment, concerns that were glossed over led to what happened to the previous DPP. This particular nominee has not been questioned in any way by any authority or person, a very rare occasion in our standing as a legal fraternity.

 Madam Speaker, I note that the person who supported this Motion first, Hon. Mukata, and I, as legal practitioners, share the same views over the nominee in that she is a person of integrity who will discharge her duties to the best of her abilities, especially that the functions of the authority are clearly stated in the National Prosecutions Authority Act, No. 34 of 2010, particularly Section 5(c).

Madam Speaker, the authority is charged with the function to promote the integrity and enhance the status of State advocates and prosecutors so as to promote honourable and good practice and increase the confidence of the public in the State advocates and prosecutors. This function is intended to ensure that the public has confidence in the authority. If the public loses confidence in the authority, it would demean our judicial system or our justice system altogether.

 It is thus imperative that the person who holds this office be of noble character, and noting that the duty of a prosecutor is not in any way to secure a conviction, but to lay evidence before the court so that the court can judge from the evidence that is laid before it as whether the person is guilty or not. It is not in any way intended to pursue a personal agenda or, indeed, to settle scores with other persons.

Madam Speaker, it has been properly shown in the report that in times where a suspect was not properly treated by a court, your nominee was able to stand and say that this should not have been the case and the court stated for a fact that such was professional conduct. This is in tandem with Section 10(6) (b) of Act No.34 of 2010 which states:

“In the performance of the prosecutor’s duties, a prosecutor shall protect the public interest, act with objectivity, take proper account of the position of the suspect and the victim and pay attention to all relevant circumstances irrespective of whether they are to the advantage or disadvantage of the suspect.”

 This is the judicial suspect. This is the justice system that we have embraced as a country where all persons are treated as equal and even suspects are given the right to be properly represented. Even when they are properly represented, the prosecution is not necessarily charged with the duty of securing a conviction, but seeing to it that justice is done. In seeing to it that justice is done, the report that has been presented before you, Madam Speaker, clearly shows the kind of person that the nominee is.

Madam Speaker, three instances have been given where she was able to stand up for the suspect or, indeed, the appellant to show that the court below made a mistake and should not have gone the way it went. In so doing, we are cushioned by the fact that the person that has been nominated is not just a professional, but is morally upright and ethical in the discharge of her duties. Therefore, I beg to support the Motion that this report be adopted and that she takes up the position of the DPP.

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

The Minister of Justice (Mr Lubinda): Madam Speaker ,...

Mr Mukata: State Counsel!


Mr Lubinda: Madam Speaker, let me start by thanking the mover and seconder of this Motion. I also thank their Committee for work very well done in interrogating the nominee. I would also like to thank them for encouraging this House to ratify the appointment of your candidate.

Madam Speaker, the two counsels who spoke on this Motion attest to the fact that the choice of this candidate was very good. She has an impeccable record and, the appointing authority, in arriving at this candidate, went to great lengths to search for a good one. Representing the appointing authority, I want to say that we are very happy that Parliament has also found this candidate to be of impeccable record. Her experience speaks for her and, like the hon. Minister for Eastern Province said, this is a person who, as Acting DPP, has executed her duty not with the intention to be vindictive against people or increase the number of convictions secured as a record for herself, but, one who has pursued her desire for justice.

We, therefore, are confident that this nominee will perform to the satisfaction of society.

Madam Speaker, before I conclude my thanks to all those who contributed to the assessment of this candidate, allow me to just comment a little on the matters that were raised by the hon. Member of Parliament for Chilanga.

Madam, indeed, our Judiciary ought to dispense of issues speedily and nobody can argue the need for that. We all agree with the doctrine that justice delayed is justice denied and we are doing whatever is within our means to ensure that justice is dispensed quickly.

Madam Speaker, nonetheless, I would like to also inform Hon. Mukata that the work that he and my predecessor started in the Ministry of Justice has continued. The Office of the National Prosecutions Authority (NPA) is being decentralised, again, with the intention of making sure that justice is delivered quickly. The nominated candidate has been involved in orienting all public prosecutors who were positioned in different law enforcement agencies such as the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC), the Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) and the Zambia Police Force (ZP), and she is in the process of orienting prosecutors in the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC). She is going to be responsible for more than 500 public prosecutors. Much as the number may sound small, but if you compare it with the number of State advocates in the Ministry of Justice whose responsibility is to defend the Government, then you can also say that the numbers at the NPA are admirable.

Madam Speaker, I will not delve into the issue of conditions of service because this is a matter that all the State advocates and the prosecutors at NPA are talking about, and we are in the process of discussing that. Let me say that conditions of service will never ever be satisfactory. They will always be less than is desired by the office holders.

Madam Speaker, the congestion in prisons is a matter of concern to all of us. Pretty soon, with your permission, Madam Speaker, I shall return to this House to come and talk about the strategies that we are engaging in to decongest prisons. I am glad that the hon. Member of Parliament, who is himself a counsel, understands that the reason for congestion is not only a lack of prosecution, but also be because of case management in the Judiciary and there are many factors that affect the release of cases. So, we shall be looking into that and I will be soliciting the House’s support in coming up with interventions to ensure that we do not delay matters that are in the courts. I would also like to inform the hon. Member that we are in the process of computerising all workholds in the court system so that we can end the issue of missing files. It is, indeed, very frustrating that when a person appeals, his or her case cannot be heard because their record is missing.

Madam Speaker, I cannot agree more with Hon. Mukata that laws should not be crafted for particular individuals. However, that message is for all of us in this House and not for the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP). The DPP has nothing to do with the formulation of laws, but, we, as hon. Members of Parliament have the responsibility to do so. Therefore, I would like to urge all of us, hon. Members of Parliament as we present Bills, to take keen interest to study those Bills and participate actively in coming up with laws. It is our duty. So, if we have any laws that are meant for individuals, the blame ends here and not with the prosecutors.

Madam Speaker, I was very delighted that the Committee restricted itself to scrutinising the candidate who was presented and did not delve into other matters that may be auxiliary to this. I was hoping that hon. Members of Parliament could also stay away from other matters, but because Hon. Mukata raised the issue of the former DPP, let me just clarify that the tribunal concluded the matter and presented their report to the appointing authority. The appointing authority could not have proceeded to appoint a new DPP if the matter of the previous DPP had not been concluded. That matter is closed. If Hon. Mukata or any other person would like to take a look at the tribunal report, I do not think it is through this Parliament. They can do it through other avenues. Let me assure Hon. Mukata that the matter was successfully concluded and if there is any person who is not satisfied with the conclusion, they know where to go and I do not think it would be in discussing the nominated candidate.

Madam Speaker, I would like to end by, again, thanking you for allowing your Committee to do such a fantastic job of scrutinising the nominated candidate. I want to assure everyone that the Government will give this office the space that is required for her to execute her very important functions.

Thank you, Madam Speaker.

Mr Ngulube: Madam Speaker, I would like to thank all the hon. Members of Parliament who have supported this Motion. I would also like to thank the hon. Minister of Justice for the responses that he has actually given to the questions that arose on the Floor.

Madam Speaker, it is, indeed, true that the Office of the DPP is a noble office requiring that a person appointed to it exhibits high moral standing in society. It is with these few remarks that I beg to move the Motion for the adoption of the report for the ratification of Madam Fulata Lillian Shawa-Siyuny as the DPP.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Question put and agreed to. 


(Debate resumed)

Ms Chalikosa (Mpika Central): Madam Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to convey my sincere congratulations on emerging victorious in the August 2016 General Elections to His Excellency, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, Sixth President of the Republic of Zambia, and Her Honour, Mrs Inonge Mutukwa Wina, the Vice-President of the Republic of Zambia.

 I congratulate the right hon. Justice Matibini, State Counsel, Madam Speaker and the Second Deputy Speaker on your unopposed election at the onset of the First Session of the Twelfth National Assembly. I further commend the efforts your management has put into the Member- constituency relations, particularly the capacity to deliver constituent services through the establishment of the constituency offices, where Members and constituents can interact freely.

Madam Speaker, congratulations are in order to all my colleagues in this august House, especially my colleagues in the Patriotic Front (PF), the Ruling Party, for a well-conducted campaign in the recently ended general elections of 11th August, 2016.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Chalikosa: Madam Speaker, my earnest gratitude goes to the Republican President and President of my party, the Patriotic Front PF, and the entire Central Committee for my adoption as candidate as well as for the financial, material and moral support rendered.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Chalikosa: Madam Speaker, to all my family members, especially my brothers, Mr Mwamba Chalikosa and Mr Katema Mutale ,for the unwavering support of my candidature. I also thank my son Bwalya Musanya who travelled from Canada to vote and give me moral support, my nephew Euwen Silungwe who was my runner, and cousin John Mulenga who did the numerous driving errands. My gratitude further goes to the campaign team, the provincial, district, constituency, ward, branch and section committees for the human resource and their positive input during the campaign. I thank the voters of Mpika Central Parliamentary Constituency for voting me into office. I thank the non-voters too, who cheered me on necimwela. I say thank you for being there.

Hon. Government Members: What is icimwela?

Ms Chalikosa: It means with joy.

Mr Kalaba: Icimwela is wind.

Ms Chalikosa: It means two things.


Ms Chalikosa: Madam Speaker, my gratitude further goes to my invaluable sponsors who are very good friends and, indeed, everyone in my life, those who prayed for me and made the extra effort to ensure that the campaign was successful and peace prevailed for the duration of the elections. As such, I urge all of us to treasure the peace we have enjoyed for close to fifty-two years thereby continuing with the peace legacy as a country.

Our Constitution demands us to recognise this under responsibilities of Citizens Article 43(1) (d) which states:

 “A citizen shall foster national unity and live in harmony with others.”

Madam Speaker, we, as legislators, should be seen to uphold the Constitution and not just parrot the pledge for convenience when we are sworn in to serve the public. Without this great country, we have no patriotic identity.

Madam Speaker, I believe that whilst we are in this House, it is established that we are representing all Zambians regardless of whether they voted for us or not, hence the importance of guarding the One Zambia, One Nation Motto. It must be emphasised that no single person should destroy our country by inciting violence and further give a false impression that the country is ungovernable for the sake of getting into high office, thereby usurping the legitimate mandate given to the incumbent President His Excellency Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu by the people of Zambia who scored above 50 per cent of the election margin.

The Zambian people deserve a lot of respect just as we, who are privileged by the grace of God our Father Almighty to serve as legislators must be obliged to provide mature and caring guidance in our leadership.

Madam Speaker, let me now contribute to the debate on the President’s Speech. In his occasion of opening of speech at the First Session of the Twelfth National Assembly, His Excellency President Edgar Chagwa Lungu touched on all sectors in the governance of this country, under the theme, “Building an Integrated Multi-Sectoral Approach to Development that Enhances Inclusiveness in Development Without Leaving Anyone Behind.” A number of us are repeating this theme in our speeches as a simple reminder that everybody matters. My general interpretation of the President’s Speech is that it is an invitation to participate in contributing to our own well-being by supporting the Government policies that have a positive influence. I encourage all patriotic Zambians to fully participate in a positive manner in the issues of governance from household levels by engaging in some form of activity to improve and not destroy our lives. By addressing the challenges that spread across the country through the integrated multi-sectoral approach thereby enabling an environment of working together simultaneously, it is encouraging that the people of Mpika Central Parliamentary Constituency will equally be taken on board to achieving the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goal Number Eight on sustainable cities and communities.

Madam Speaker, Mpika is a multi-sectoral constituency with the majority leaning towards agriculture as the mainstay of the residents in addition to general trading and minimal tourism activities. In the wake of modern information technology, there are areas that require communication towers to improve availability of mobile telephone network coverage. As the communities are growing, so are the demands for modern social amenities such as good housing, piped water, flushable toilets and electricity, whether solar generated or otherwise. As such, the issue of cheap sustainable energy is one that Mpika would benefit from. The potential for developing hydro-power is great and worth exploring further since there are a number of smaller waterfalls such as the Lwitikila Falls, rivers and natural springs. An alternative source of cheap sustainable energy would ease the problem of deforestation that is hugely practiced mainly for the marketing of charcoal that is used for cooking and heating.

Madam Speaker, I am humbled and honoured to stand before this august House to deliver my maiden speech as is the custom in order for one to participate in parliamentary debates. I, Sylvia Bambala Chalikosa, first female Member of Parliament for Mpika Central Parliamentary Constituency, together with the Zambian people of Mpika desire access to improved social amenities. To this end, I will work with the people, the PF Government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and other co-operating partners, local and international, to ensure the relevant institutions improve and expand outreach in the communities, commensurate with the growing population. I believe that currently, the population stands at 85,942 comprising over 300 villages, which is approximately 13,207 households. You may wish to note that Mpika Central Parliamentary Constituency, a rural constituency in Mpika District of Muchinga Province accommodates Chitulika Village, the birth place of the founder of the PF party and Fifth Republican President His Excellency the late Mr Michael Chilufya Sata. May his soul rest in peace.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Chalikosa: Madam Speaker, the late President Sata was also Member of Parliament for the same constituency for two terms. To his credit, President Sata’s love for peace, regardless of the number of times he lost elections, was manifested in his humble servitude embracing all, irrespective of colour as evidenced by his Vice-President, who is a white man, he had nieces and nephews of various ethnic origins, creed, young and old. His charisma appealed to old and young people who voted for him to become President. In terms of gender, he appointed the first female National Chairperson in the PF, who is now Her Honour the Vice-President of this country. He appealed to the rich and the poor. He enjoyed endless support in material, financial and human resource to produce tangible results.

Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Kampyongo: Ema niece, aya.


Ms Chalikosa: Madam Speaker, these few attributes attest to the huge following and unwavering support of many that have seen the PF grow to continue ruling this country now under the very able leadership of His Excellency President Edgar Chagwa Lungu. The late President Michael Chilufya Sata believed in being practical and result-oriented, hence his desire to see positive change in this country. He was seen to be harsh by some. However, his harshness was directed at non-performers, but his works proved that Zambia could be transformed into a society of hard-working Zambians resolved to improving the general standards of living. He was my inspiration to join politics and I thank the people of Mpika Central Parliamentary Constituency, once again, for the confidence shown by voting for me in such an overwhelming manner.
Madam Speaker, I feel privileged to serve under His Excellency the President, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, who has steered the PF and Zambia’s development agenda this far, providing continuity and enhancing the ideals of the founder of our party. The President has adopted a transforming approach to the development of this nation, with a view to making Zambia a better place for all to live in. He set the tone in his last speech at the Official Opening of Parliament when he stated that infrastructure development will be based on strategic economic benefits.

This sits well with Mpika Central Constituency by virtue of its strategic location, which translates it into being the nexus of air, railway and road transport from our life line from the Dar-es-Salaam Port to other destinations. This life line runs from the Northern Province through Kasama to the Southern, Copperbelt and North-Western provinces through Kapiri Mposhi not forgetting the gateway to the Eastern Province through the Nabwalya Road. The people of Mpika Central truly look forward to being part and parcel of this development agenda.

Madam Speaker, the challenges of Mpika Central are many. However, I do commend the PF Government for the relatively quick pace at which some of these challenges are being addressed. Under the Link Zambia 8,000 km Road Project, the essence of inter-linking Zambia to its neighbouring countries and all provinces within the country through good road infrastructure has been well established. His Excellency the President, has taken that step further by focusing on the economic roads that bring in revenue via ports of entry, weigh bridges and toll gates.

The people of Mpika welcome the Republican President’s pronouncement that “access roads to heritage sites and other tourist attractions will also be prioritised” because the construction of the Mpika/Nabwalya/Mfuwe Road that leads into the South Luangwa National Park and the Mpika/Katibunga/Kakoko Road that leads to the North Luangwa National Park where rhinos are kept has the potential to boost tourism travel to the game parks, beginning with the Nachikufu Caves that showcase ancient rock paintings, a historical site managed by the National Heritage Conservation Commission (NHCC).

At local level, the people of Mpika Central Constituency desire to have over 580 km of feeder and township roads graded and over forty strong and durable bridges built for the transportation of people, goods and agricultural produce. We also need reticulation of piped water and over 350 boreholes  to be sunk, over thirty-six functional community health posts to be built, over twenty-three community schools to be rehabilitated, more classroom blocks and government schools equipped with relevant tools and furniture to be constructed, teaching and other staff and over 500 staff houses.

Madam Speaker, these challenges are not peculiar to Mpika Central Constituency alone, but are generic to most parts of the country. The people of Mpika are aware of and are willing to provide the 25 per cent or so community input in most community projects to be supported by the Government, non-governmental organisation (NGO) and other interested partners rendering investment in infrastructure development. Therefore, if well implemented, this co-operation can lead to the creation of jobs as part of the national development plan.

Madam Speaker, farming is the mainstay of the majority of people in Mpika. The cry of farmers to increase the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) has been addressed by the PF Government and as of today, the quantities that any farmer may desire are readily available under this programme, provided the farmer increases his or her shares to match his or her needs. In Mpika, there is a problem with some agents charged with distribution of farming inputs in that they choose whom and when to serve depending on political affiliation. I would like to appeal to these agents to serve the public without favour because we should all be on the path to ease political tension.

Madam Speaker, in terms of industrialisation, it is imperative that in our quest to invite local and international investors, we bear in mind the need to care for our environment for the sake of future generations. Land is available and already earmarked for industrial development. Therefore, the set-up of manufacturing industries in order to add value, for instance, to locally produced fruits and vegetables such as jam, juice, tomato paste, cassava based glue, starch, baking flour and talcum powder for both adults and babies, would clearly create jobs for our unemployed youths and form an increased revenue base for the constituency. What are required are the skills to operate these industries.

Mpika hosts the Tanzania Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) Training Centre ideally to provide skills to workers in order to support the operations of the railway industry for both Zambia and Tanzania and, indeed, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Region. These skills are employed in the TAZARA workshop, but can be used for any kind of engineering works. With reinvestment into TAZARA and bilateral agreements supporting Zambia’s development agenda, Mpika is ripe for industrial activity.

Madam Speaker, I am delighted to note the efforts that the PF Government is making in terms of empowering our women, youths and vulnerable in society. The loans being advanced without collateral are a step in the right direction, provided the beneficiaries are equipped with some training on how to manage and expand their business. In Mpika, there is  a need to expand the outreach beyond the district headquarters’ area and I will encourage the women and youth clubs to register for support. I will also lobby other financial institutions to consider investing in small scale entrepreneurs.

Further, there is  a need to incorporate more women and youths in generally male-dominated fields if we are to reach the bare minimum  requirement of now 50 per cent under the SADC Protocol of women in decision making positions. I am aware of the difficulties women in rural constituencies face, especially in travelling long distances without transport to reach health facilities. I will work with the women to address this issue that is perpetually on the table. Equally, I will lobby for women in Mpika to own land for their economic activities, as a contribution to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal No. 5 on gender equality and empowerment of girls and women.

Madam Speaker, in conclusion, I wish to reiterate my gratitude to His Excellency the President, for policy direction and pace setting in his speech at the Official Opening of this First Session of the Twelve National Assembly. I pledge to do my part to the best of my ability in lobbying for improved basic social amenities using available options for my country in general and my constituency in particular.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Zimba (Chasefu): Madam Speaker, I thank you for according me this opportunity to address the House. I wish to congratulate His Excellency the President, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, and Her Honour the Vice-President, Mrs Inonge Mutukwa Wina, on being elected President and Vice-President of Zambia respectively on 11th August, 2016. I want to take this opportunity to also congratulate Mr Speaker, Madam First Deputy Speaker and Mr Second Deputy Speaker on your election as presiding officers for this prestigious House.

Madam Speaker, the people of Chasefu have bestowed upon me a great responsibility. It is a great honour to be in this august House to represent my people. I am greatly humbled.

Madam Speaker, before I deliver my maiden speech, I wish to make a few comments on the President’s Speech. His Excellency the President has a great vision for this country. He has the best interest for this country at heart and his speech was conclusive.

Mr Livune: Question!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Zimba: Madam Speaker, agriculture is the common thread that links each and every community across Zambia. It is the main contributor to a community’s economy in terms of employment, returns to producers and support to small businesses in each of our communities. The sector is of significant importance to sub Saharan African. A large percentage of the population in sub-Saharan Africa depend on the agriculture sector. Off-farm opportunities are however, limited, particularly in rural areas probably because the manufacturing sector is negligible. Low productivity characterises agriculture in Zambia and Africa at large. This is because of low technology transfer, very low investment in technology, human resources, partners to develop markets and inappropriate institutional supportive framework in the competitive sector and poor monitoring of the food production and processing methods required for food safety and hygienic protocols in developed countries.

Madam Speaker, as the mainstay of the people of my Constituency, 90 per cent of them derive their livelihood from, agriculture which needs a boost. Enhancing productivity will definitely have a positive impact on the lives of the people of Chasefu and the country at large. State intervention in the provision of agricultural extension, research, marketing and credit services can influence economic activity and ensure that intermediaries behave prudently.

Madam Speaker, the rural people do not save, and need cheap credit to take advantage of improved agricultural technology and investment potential. The Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) has resulted in additional supply of agricultural products and modernisation of the economy. I would like to urge the Government to continue with such developmental programmes.

Madam Speaker, the vast agricultural potential that this country has, when fully maximised, can contribute tremendously towards the country’s’ Gross Domestic Product (GDP). As His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia emphasised, the agriculture sector must include other sectors that will add value to its growth. I hope that the Government will enhance value addition in response to the President’s clarion call that in order to self-sustain the economy, we should first produce local, buy local, use local and then export more.

Madam Speaker, in a continued effort to address the problem of youth unemployment, I wish to appeal to the Government to accelerate the decentralisation of sustainable agricultural programmes as a matter of extreme urgency. The youth and the women must be targets of these programmes because they are the most vulnerable.

Madam, one of the reasons for Zambia’s lack of agricultural productivity has been the over-dependence on copper. The mining sector has traditionally been prioritised above agriculture in terms of investments despite the fact that over 60 per cent of the country’s 13 million people rely on farming for their livelihood.

Madam Speaker, industrialisation alone can alter the current economic and social structure of this country. I urge the Government to resolve to diversify the agriculture sector so as to enhance the sector’s capacity to achieve mass production and feed into the agro-manufacturing sub-sectors. This can be achieved through investment in mechanisation, science and technology. A Lack of mechanisation and dependence on hand tools and rudimentary implements for cultivation is a huge hindrance to productivity. It is time to move away from traditional methods for maximum production.

Madam Speaker, industrialisation is considered by many developing countries as a major strategy for achieving faster economic growth and higher standards of living. It is argued that economically advanced countries in Europe and America are usually more industrialised than the economically least developed countries in Africa and Asia. It is considered as a major solution to unemployment and underemployment in developing countries.

Madam Speaker, I now wish to turn to my maiden speech. John F. Kennedy once famously said, “the only reason to give a speech is to change the world”. Needless to say, I cannot change the world. However, I can change the lives of the people in Chasefu who rely on me. By far, Madam Speaker, my most important task is to serve the people of Chasefu with the full measure of my devotion. In delivering my maiden speech, I have the opportunity to set out what sort of politician I would like to be and what I would like to achieve for the wonderful people of Chasefu. I have come to the conclusion that from this time on, my work starts and finishes with the fundamental principles of dignity, integrity and respect. These principles are the means and the ends.

Madam Speaker, to the people of Chasefu, I want to say thank you for sharing what matters to you; what matters to us. This is the start of our conversation and I look forward to continuing this dialogue that will lead to action for our community. Thank you for taking a chance on me and changing our political landscape. There is no greater honour than to represent you in our nation’s capital. I will do everything I can to keep democracy as close to our community as possible so that your voice is heard. I am deeply humbled and greatly honoured that you have elected me to Parliament. It is a privilege and a heavy responsibility bestowed on very few Zambians. I wish to extend my warmest congratulations to all other new hon. Members because I know how hard they worked to get here.

Mr Sikazwe: Ifwe abakale we did not win?


Mr Zimba: And the old ones as well.


Mr Zimba: The old ones also won.

Madam Speaker, the electoral success that I have enjoyed is due to the hard work of so many people. I want to thank the Patriotic Front (PF) Government for the confidence it had in me as a suitable candidate to carry out the mandate of the party in this part of Zambia.

Madam Speaker, every new Member comes into this place with life experiences from which they draw strengths. I come here with certain knowledge that no one lives a perfect life and that we all need help in good times and hard times. I draw my strength from the example of my family and my faith. I wish to thank my wife and my family who have played a great role in this success. I gratefully acknowledge the many sacrifices, love and support that they have shown in this journey that I have embarked on.

Madam Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to my predecessor Hon. Chifumu Banda, for his dedication to Chasefu and its people. I am hopeful that he will be available to offer guidance and advice when I knock on his door.

Madam Speaker, in my tenure of office as area Member of Parliament for Chasefu, I will focus my energies on what we promised the people of Chasefu, and that is development. I am here to vigorously pursue the PF developmental agenda intended to better the lives of our people.

Mr Livune: Question.

Mr Zimba: Madam Speaker, despite the many challenges facing my people in my constituency, I feel-duty bound to acknowledge the on-going developmental projects that this hard working PF Government is undertaking in my area.

Madam Speaker, some of the significant projects include but are not limited to the construction of Chasefu Secondary School and the commencement of works on the Lundazi-Chama Road. I am appealing to my hardworking Government to accelerate the construction of Chasefu Secondary School so as to de-congest Emusa and Hoya Day Secondary schools. I am also appealing to the Government to construct teachers’ houses and renovate those that are already in existence. Some of the houses and classrooms are in a deplorable state which is affecting the morale of the pupils and teachers. I urge the Government to accelerate the construction of new schools and clinics so as to achieve the 4 km to 5 km radius in between schools and clinics

Madam Speaker, Chasefu faces a persistent problem of non-availability of safe and clean drinking water. I know that it is a cliché, but water is life. However, for the people of Chasefu, water is a challenge. Sadly, no major project has taken place in the area. The new boreholes that were sunk not long ago have dried up. I want to urge my listening Government to sink more boreholes to alleviate this problem and help the people of Chasefu access clean drinking water.

Madam Speaker, during the rainy season, the feeder roads become almost impassable, making it difficult for the people of Chasefu and vehicles to move. For instance, during this period, peasant farmers in Chasefu are not able to transport their farm produce to markets for sale.

Madam Speaker, information communication technology has taken over the world. Unfortunately, my constituency has been left behind. The people of Chasefu cannot easily communicate using cellular phones as there are no communication towers in Chasefu. The area has no television and radio signals. I am appealing to this Government, through the Zambia Information Communication Technology Authority (ZICTA), to install communication towers in Chasefu Constituency.

Madam Speaker, as representatives of the people, we may not agree on everything, but we need to work together for the future of our country and its people. I look forward to working with each and everyone who is prepared to see this country prosper rather than shut down. I am re-affirming my unflinching commitment to working with the people of Chasefu Constituency and the rest of Zambia irrespective of their political affiliation.

Madam, I believe it is only the PF Government with its policies of social justice, including equality in health care, equality in education and social policy, that can provide a framework of equity and equality for all Zambians.

Madam Speaker and my fellow hon. Members, thank you for your indulgence and warm welcome to this honourable House.

Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kaziya (Matero): Madam Speaker, I would like to thank you for according me this opportunity to debate in this august House.

Madam, in delivering my maiden speech, I wish to congratulate His Excellency the President, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, and Her Honour the Vice-President, Madam Inonge Mutukwa Wina on the sound and sweet victory over the just-ended general elections.

Mr Livune: Question!

Mr Kaziya: Madam Speaker, allow me to bestow my accolade for the hon. Mr Speaker and the two Deputy Speakers for your unopposed victory. Congratulations. I also wish to congratulate all hon. Members of Parliament on making it to the National Assembly. Let me also congratulate our newly appointed hon. Ministers, Whips of the House and other leaders of this august House.

 Madam, before I go into the details of my maiden speech, may I thank most sincerely my party President, our Republican President and the Commander-in-Chief of our armed forces, Mr Walk the Talk, His Excellency Edgar Chagwa Lungu and the entire Central Committee for the confidence they have shown in me and my subsequent adoption as a voice of the good people of Matero.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kaziya: Madam Speaker, I further wish to thank my family and my children; Yande, Mutoba, Taizya and Mercy for standing beside me and for enduring the entire period of the campaigns. I also wish to thank my campaign team and most importantly the people of Matero for supporting the progressive and popular party, the Patriotic Front (PF).

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kaziya: Madam, I wish to thank the Almighty God for His mercies and for making it possible for me to address you, Madam, in this august House. Let me also pay tribute to my predecessor for the good job that he did and rendered to the people of the Matero.

 Madam Speaker, Matero is one of the largest and most complex cosmopolitan constituencies in the country. The constituency is well-known for its famous Invisible University, Matero University.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

 Mr Kaziya: Madam, this depicts the various strong characteristics, tenacity, creativity and sober minds that exist in Matero. This township is also popularly known as a city within a city. There is a saying that goes; If you visit Lusaka and you do not visit Matero then, you will have not been to Lusaka.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kaziya: Madam Speaker, in my maiden speech, the focus of my debated is on seven salient points, namely; water reticulation, sanitation, health, education, youth empowerment, infrastructure development, decentralisation and market modernisation.

Madam, Matero is a constituency, which is highly urbanised as such, it is faced with numerous challenges such as water supply and sanitation, garbage collection and balancing the distribution of township roads, youth unemployment just to add to the list.

Madam Speaker, Matero is today faced with a serious challenge of water supply and sanitation. My office, through the relevant authorities, will seriously look into the plight of our people in order to introduce and work out a plan to promote flushable toilets in affected areas. This can only be possible when plans to increase water reticulation capacity and sanitation are realised in the shortest period of time.

Madam, we have four prominent silver tanks situated on the humanism hill. The tanks were designed for a small population of approximately 25,000 people then, in late 60s and early 70s, mainly to supply water to the old council houses.

Madam Speaker, the unprecedented population growth in Matero has compounded this situation. It requires immediate intervention from our listening Government to meet the current demand for water supply. The old silver tanks stand rusted, perforated and obsolete. The people of Matero are now largely dependent on the concrete water tank that serves as a reservoir.

Madam Speaker, the answer to these problems lies in a concerted effort to improve the storage capacity from the current four tanks to twelve, in which my view, is achievable. This will not only solve one problem, but also reduce water and airborne diseases. There is also need to improve on the water whose source is the Kafue River.

Madam Speaker, Matero can boast of having a First Level District Hospital.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kaziya: This can only be attributed to the good governance of the Patriotic Front (PF) Government. This state-of-the-art hospital will be supported by George, Lilanda and main Matero clinics. Plans to construct Save Our Souls (S.O.S), Zingalume and Emmasdale Health Posts to support this district hospital are underway. I wish to take this opportunity to request our listening Government, through the Ministry of Health, to send more doctors and other medical personnel to this district hospital.

Madam Speaker, outbreaks of cholera and typhoid that used to ravage our communities in the past have been brought under control.

Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kaziya: My office of Member of Parliament will put stringent measures to combat such diseases by sensitising the communities through various communication channels such as public address systems, megaphones, and radio and television announcements.

To further improve on this hygienic condition, the people of Matero, through my office, will soon embark on major works to improve drainage systems along major roads in Emmasdale, George Compound, Zingalume and Lilanda. One particular example is Vubu Road in Emmasdale.

To further promote a conducive and clean environment in Matero, various private companies involved in garbage collection have since been engaged to assist in reducing the quantities of uncollected garbage.

Madam Speaker, an educated society is, indeed, an enlightened one. Before the PF formed Government in 2011, only two secondary schools, namely, Matero Boys and Matero Girls existed. It is during the reign of the PF Government that we have witnessed the upgrade of three basic schools to secondary schools.

Mr Sikazwe: Hear, hear!

Mr Kaziya: Today, Chunga, Nelson Mandela and Matero, formerly Matero Primary, are Secondary Schools. This has greatly cheered the residents of Matero. I strongly feel that the Government, through the Ministry of General Education, can upgrade or add two more modern secondary schools in George Compound and Lilanda, Kapwepwe Ward. A lot more can be done to add a youth and adult skills centre.

Madam Speaker, the problem of youth unemployment has not spared Matero. My office wishes to put it on record that we intend to carry out a census of the Matero youth. We want to invite them to a youth congress at Matero Main Hall where we can accord them the opportunity to air their concerns and grievances.

I realise that these youths have intelligent minds and immeasurable potential to handle any industry. I want to provide an interactive and proactive approach in segmenting them into various interest groups and talents. I want to motivate them and make them believe in the Patriotic Front (PF) ideals and understand our party manifesto. I want to craft them into responsible potential employees and employers. I intend to create and encourage a local investment approach by empowering our youths with appropriate survival skills and thus, add to the 1 million plus jobs outlined by our President in his speech delivered on 30th September, 2016.

Madam Speaker, I have identified an area behind Muleya Primary School teachers’ compound suitable for a youth skills centre. This centre will train our youths in various skills that will enable them to join the informal and formal sectors of our economy. By so doing, we shall engage our youths in productive ventures and reduce to a very large extent, the number of youths engaging in drug and alcohol abuse and other vices in society.

Madam Speaker, the PF Government initiated and achieved unprecedented development such as construction of state-of-the-art district hospitals, a dual carriageway, the Commonwealth Road, township roads in major compounds and various health and security posts in Lilanda, Barlaston and SOS.  The Government plans to improve Mungwi Road into a dual carriageway stretching from Government Stores or Barloworld to Kasupe Turn Off and resurface Lumumba and Zingalume Roads. I shall lobby the Government to upgrade more township roads in Matero East, Emmasdale Site and Service, Olympic Youth Development Centre (OYDC) and SOS areas, and complete the Mukulukumbwa Road up to Zani Muone.

Madam Speaker, the people of Matero strongly desire the Government to declare Matero a city by 2021.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kaziya: ... It should have its own civic centre and mayor. Matero has what it takes to be declared as such. It boosts of a district hospital supported by a good road network and a town centre. I have identified land where there is Matero Main Hall, Matero Gym and Matero Magistrate Court to be the location of an ultra modern civic centre. I realise that the Lusaka civic centre may not contain and cope with the ever increasing demands for civic services to match the population growth. Issuance of title deeds, collection of revenues like council rates and many numerous services needed by the residents of Lusaka are not being provided to all the residents of Lusaka due to the growing population.

Madam Speaker, I want to give the people of Matero modern markets because many marketeers are operating under makeshift structures. Poor sanitation and fires have ravaged most markets in Matero such as Buseko Market. It is for this reason that I will work tirelessly with my working Government to ensure that the people of Matero have modern markets.

Madam Speaker, as I conclude my maiden speech, ...
Mr Sikazwe: You have four minutes.
Mr Kaziya: ... allow me to, once again, pay tribute to the Mighty PF, through its leader, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, for the confidence shown in me.
Madam Speaker, allow me to turn to the President’s Speech and add my voice to the many hon. Members that have debated matters contained in the speech. The President delivered to this House an eloquent, well thought-out and structured speech. In his speech he revealed to the country his vision and roadmap for the next five years that, he would improve the lives of the Zambian people.
Madam Speaker, the President in his speech looked at building an integrated multi-sectorial approach to development and enhancing inclusiveness without leaving anyone behind. This speaks volumes. The President is concerned with stabilising the micro economic situation in the country as an engine to drive our economy and build investor confidence. He wants to ensure that public debt management remains stable in order to create room for financial development.
Madam Speaker, industrialisation and job creation are key in the growth of domestic and foreign direct investment and it is for this reason that the Government remains committed to establishing the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) to spearhead development in the country thereby creating more than 1 million jobs within the next five years.
Madam Speaker, a common denominator in our maiden speeches has been the need to establish youth skills centres in our various constituencies. The President is interested in capacity building and the development of human capital by providing youth with the necessary skills in science, technology and innovation. In his keynote speech, the President placed emphasis on economic diversification from dependence on copper to massive agricultural investment and the need to open up land for agriculture.
Madam Speaker, in conclusion, the President addressed the need to maintain peace and uphold our motto of ‘One Zambia, One Nation’.
I thank you, Madam.
Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!
Mr Chansa (Chimbamilonga): Madam Speaker, thank you for giving me this opportunity to present my maiden speech.
Madam Speaker, first and foremost, I thank God who sustained me during the campaigns.
Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!
Mr Chansa: I congratulate His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu and his running mate, the Vice-President, Mrs Inonge Mutukwa Wina, on their resounding victory.
Madam Speaker, let me also congratulate you, the Hon. Speaker and the hon. Second Deputy Speaker on your deserved election to preside over the affairs of this august House for the next five years. Furthermore, let me thank His Excellency the President, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu and the Central Committee of the Patriotic Front (PF) for adopting me to re-contest the Chimba milonga Seat.
Madam Speaker, let me also congratulate Hon. Freedom Chomba Sikazwe ...
Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!
Mr Chansa: ... and the PF Provincial Chairperson for the Northern Province who campaign hard during my adoption.
Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!
Mr Chansa: Madam Speaker, I would be failing in my duties if I did not recognise the efforts of my campaign managers, Mr David Musonda and Mr Panji Chilingala. The District Chairperson, Mr Peter Mwando, the Constituency Chairperson, Mr Steven Musonda ...
Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!

(Debate adjourned)

The House adjourned at 1255 hours until 1430 hours on Wednesday, 19thOctober, 2016.