Debates - Friday, 1st March, 2013

Printer Friendly and PDF


Friday, 1st March, 2013

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR DEPUTY SPEAKER in the Chair]





The Vice-President (Dr Scott): Mr Speaker, I rise to give the House some idea of the business it will consider next week.

Mr Speaker, on Tuesday, 5th March, 2013, it says here that the Business of the House will begin with Questions when, in fact, it will begin with the swearing in of the new hon.  Member of Parliament for Mpongwe Parliamentary Constituency.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, we will then proceed to Questions, if there will be any. This will be followed by presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. On Wednesday, 6th March, 2013, 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. Then, the House will consider Private Members’ Motions, if there will be any. Thereafter, the House will consider the Second Reading Stage of the following Bills:

(i) The Higher Education Bill, 2013; and

(ii) The Teaching Professional Bill, 2013.

Mr Speaker, on Thursday, 7th March, 2013, the Business of the House will commence with Questions, if there will be any. This will be followed by presentation of Government Bills, if there will be any. The House will then consider the Second Reading Stage of the following Bills:

(i) The Bank of Zambia (Amendment) Bill, 2013; and

(ii) The Millennium Challenge Compact Bill, 2013.

Mr Speaker, the House will then deal with any business that may be outstanding.

I thank you, Sir.



Mr Mbewe (Chadiza): Mr Speaker, on several occasions, His Honour the Vice-President has come out clearly to say that development can only be taken to an hon. Member of Parliament’s constituency if he/she is from the Ruling Party. Can he confirm whether this statement is correct or not. If it is correct, why is it that some of the hon. Members of Parliament who are from the Ruling Partly, especially those from the Copperbelt Province, are complaining about water shortages in their constituencies?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I do not recall addressing a meeting at which the hon. Member of Parliament for Chadiza was present …


The Vice-President: … either in the persona of a cat or mbeba.


The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I am sure he has simply picked third or fourth hand versions of what I said. I did point out that, obviously, there are advantages to having an hon. Member of Parliament who is from the Ruling Party because communication is easier between that individual and the Government. I have never threatened that water shortages will persist if people vote wrongly, as he is suggesting.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Ngo’nga (Kaputa): Mr Speaker, I want to find out what the status of the results from the parliamentary and ward by-elections conducted yesterday are because the people of Kaputa have not yet heard the results.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I trust that the people of Kaputa have got a broadcast station that they can listen to. Mpongwe seems to have gone unequivocally in the Patriotic Front’s (PF) favour.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, with two polling stations to go out of sixty, 4,500 votes went to PF and 2,800 to the United Party for National Development (UPND) and less than 1,000 to the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD). I hope the hon. Member of Parliament for Chadiza will quote me correctly on that one. What is interesting me about the by-elections is that the PF is picking seats in the Central Province, Itezhi-tezhi and Namwala. We also expect to get some in the North-Western Province. However, a definitive account of all this is still being awaited.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Simfukwe (Mbala): Mr Speaker, the Central Statistical Office Bulletin for January, 2013, still indicates that most of our copper is sold through Switzerland, and reports everywhere are saying that this is a scheme used by the mines to sell our copper cheaply to Switzerland, where the copper never arrives. It is then resold to China and other places at a much higher price, hence the mines’ avoiding to pay the right amount of tax. Has the Government taken any measures to curtail this siphoning of Zambia’s revenue by the mines?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister of Finance has clearly stated the Government’s position on the taxes for the mines inside this House as well as outside. The hon. Minister of Finance, together with the hon. Minister responsible for Mines, Energy and Water Development, is implementing an on-going project meant to monitor much more carefully all aspects of mining operations, especially the quantity and the prices at which the minerals are exported. This project should not be confused with a change in any taxation formulas. People think we are going to change the formulas. This particular project is not about changing the profit tax, income tax or royalty tax. It is about monitoring how much is mined and where it goes. That point has clearly been stated by the hon. Minister of Finance. The Government’s policy is that the country needs to know the output of its mines. We have to be careful because some of the people involved in mining activities have been mining all over the world for a long time to an extent that they can be very crafty. It is not easy for an ordinary hon. Member of Parliament or His Honour the Vice-President to sit and understand what is happening. It requires careful systematic monitoring and analysis.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Namugala (Mafinga): Mr Speaker, I would like to start by congratulating the PF …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Namugala: … on winning the Mpongwe By-election …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Ms Namugala: … and, of course, it is sad that my party, the PF, because of poor leadership has dropped to number three.


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

Mr Namugala: Poor leadership in the MMD.

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

For the sake of the people out there, please, make a correction in the part of the sentence where you said, “My party, the PF.”

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Ms Namugala: Mr Speaker, I meant to say that my party, the MMD. The MMD has dropped to number three. This is sad. Again, I want to stress that all this is happening because of poor leadership.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Ms Namugala: Mr Speaker, we have witnessed in the recent past, an increase in load shedding in the central business district of Lusaka. This has led to the loss of income by macro and small-scale enterprises. Can His Honour the Vice-President tell us what his Government is doing to ensure that this load shedding is reduced so that macro and small enterprises continue to gain a livelihood.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, first of all, let me thank the questioner for her congratulations and gratuitous lamention. She does not need to come up with a lamentation about the leadership in her party. When you lose an election which you are expecting to win, things usually fall apart though, sometimes it is not forever. That is what experience shows us. I was wondering why she has been looking so miserable recently. She has stopped smiling at me as she used to.


The Vice-President: I take it that her sorrow has been caused by the condition of the leadership in her own party.

Sir, I would have preferred to have been alerted about the question on load shedding in advance so that I could have consulted the relevant authorities. However, I have been advised off-the-cuff that there are two generators which are currently down. One is in Kariba and one in Kafue Gorge. The two generators will be up and running by Monday.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}

Mr Bwalya (Lupososhi): Mr Speaker, Action Aid has accused Zambia Sugar of engaging in transfer pricing which has led to the country losing out on revenue. May I get a comment from His Honour the Vice-President as regards the monies which are purported to have been lost by the Republic of Zambia through Zambia Sugar’s transfer pricing?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, there is a problem with some non-governmental organisations (NGOs). They are trying to be helpful to the people of third world countries such as Zambia, but do not want to co-operate, particularly with the governments because they think they are part of the problem. Action Aid made the presentation of their report to me only after they had completed it. They made various unsupported assertions such as the point that Zambia Sugar was taking advantage of loopholes in the taxation structure that were designed to help small-scale farmers. I told them that that the lower profit tax in agriculture was originally introduced many years ago by, in fact, the present hon. Minister of Finance and further reduced in last year’s Budget. It is not aimed purely at small-scale farmers, but at the agriculture industry in its entirety. If the tax is only at 10 per cent, there would be no point in transferring the profit to, for example, Mauritius because the company would already be at an advantage. So, why make such allegations off-the-cuff? Why not come and consult us so that they can help us?

In fact, as far as I am aware, we, as a Government, have not been asked to help Action Aid to get these facts straight. There are many questions about the sugar industry which I have which are not covered in its report.

I wish to tell the NGOs that the Government is trying to achieve the same things as them. The NGOs want to see poverty alleviation, employment, and infrastructure development among others. Action Aid should collaborate with us so that we can get a much more sensible analysis done.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima (Chembe): Mr Speaker, one of the topical issues in the country today is the alleged deaths of inmates at Mukobeko Maximum Prisons. This topic is not about Kabinga Pande or the MMD. It is about the Government and the people.

The information from relatives of the inmates and the hospital indicates that some inmates were killed. This issue will continue haunting those who are in the Government. I remember that in 1999/2000 when it was alleged that Zambian soldiers were abducted in West Africa, in a transparent way, the Zambian Government sent the Committee on National Security and Foreign Affairs to carry out its investigations. In order to clear this issue, why does the Government not consider sending an independent committee, for example, the Committee on National Security and Foreign Affairs to carry out its investigations so that this issue can be put to rest?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I did not catch very clearly everything Hon. Mbulakulima said. However, I understand the fact that he wants to find out whether we are sure that nobody was killed or injured during the recent fracas at the Mukobeko Maximum Security Prison.

The hon. Minister of Home Affairs gave a statement in this House to the effect that there were no deaths associated with the escape of three prisoners from the Mukobeko Maximum Security Prison. I read, two days ago, in one of the newspapers that the Human Rights Commission had also confirmed that state of affairs. So, I do not know what other confirmation is required. Should we set up a whole inquiry to establish what is true between the rumour, as reported by the hon. Member for Kasempa and the statement which was issued by the hon. Minister of Home Affairs?

Sir, I am satisfied that what the hon. Minister of Home Affairs said is correct. I can even put my neck on the chopping board.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kazonga (Vubwi): Mr Speaker, may I know the current status of the Malawian, Judge Chikopa. Is he is still in the country or not? If he is still in the country, what work is he doing?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, he is in Zambia and the tribunal is on.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Matafwali (Bangweulu): Mr Speaker, the appointment of Mr Chibamba Kanyama as Director-General of our national broadcaster has led to a lot of positive improvements in the operations of the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) despite the fact that it is operating in a dirty environment. For sake of good co-operate governance and in order for us to sustain the gains so far achieved, when is the Government going to appoint a board of directors for the ZNBC?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, the names are there and the process of taking it through Cabinet is on-going. I would expect it to be done in a matter of weeks.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Chituwo (Mumbwa): Mr Speaker, our country has seen and experienced so many disasters one of which has been excess rain and flooding, particularly in the Central Province, in Nangoma and Mumbwa. There has also been the bursting of embankments of dams. What plans has His Honour the Vice-President, who is responsible for the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU), put in place to ensure that speedy repairs to the dams, particularly in Mumbwa, are put in place to avert the issue of cholera?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I do not know what level of detail and granularity the hon. Member, who I see is avoiding the football match in Malawi …


The Vice-President: … by remaining in the House having experienced a twisted ankle the last time he tried to participate, wants. The DMMU is well on top of the issues that he mentioned and is in close collaboration with the Ministry of Finance which provides the emergency funding that is required in order to carry out these works.

However, I am perfectly satisfied that the DMMU is abreast of the issues.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mushanga (Bwacha): Mr Speaker, Kabwe is made up of two constituencies which are Bwacha and Kabwe Central constituencies. At the moment, there are road works going on in Kabwe, but their concentration is in Kabwe Central Constituency. May I know if the Government intends to extend the road works to Bwacha Constituency.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, yes, we intend to extend the road works to Bwacha Constituency. We are waiting for the rains to be definitively over. We do not want another 50 cm of rain between now and the start of works in Kabwe rural. Otherwise, it is all on the drawing board and ready to go.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Milambo (Mwembeshi): Mr Speaker, the dollar/kwacha exchange rate has hit its highest point in the history of this country and, as such, imports have become extremely expensive. Is there anything the Government is doing to contain or reduce this exchange rate?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, the Bank of Zambia (BOZ) intervenes in the foreign exchange market to obtain stability. There is more to stability than simply the notion that there is a number. In this country, we seem to be obsessed with one or two numbers which we think describe our economic condition. One of these numbers is the dollar exchange rate. 

Sir, the dollar itself has been going up and down vis-à-vis the euro, with the tribulations that the European Union (EU) is undergoing. People have been moving money from euros into dollars which is strengthening the dollar and, in turn, strengthening it against the kwacha, other things being equal.

However, BOZ is perfectly on top of it. I think obsessing about K4,800 to K5,300, which is only a 10 per cent floatation in the case of a foreign currency, when the dollar and the pound move by more than that in the course of a year …

Mr Milambo indicated dissent (shaking his head).

The Vice-President: Why are you shaking your head?

Mr Kambwili: Why are you shaking your head?


The Vice-President: I am telling you simple economics. A strong kwacha is good for people who import second-hand Japanese vehicles while a weak kwacha is very good for export agriculturalists. So, which way do you want it? The rate is moving. That is why it is called a floating exchange rate. It is market-determined so that it can change. We are also trying to push the interest rates down, which your friends on your side allowed to get totally out of hand so that no Zambian investor could invest in doing anything in Zambia and all they can do is import. We are slowly moving in the right direction.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Professor Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda): Mr Speaker, many people are waiting to hear the response of His Honour the Vice-President to the question I am going to ask. There are many small-scale timber traders who earn their livelihood and support their families through this trade. However, there has been a ban on the sale of timber and they would like to know when this ban will be lifted, if at all, so that they can support themselves.


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, the industry was in a horribly corrupt and irregular condition when the ban was introduced. There has been a lot of dialogue since then with the private players in the industry and the conditions as to what constitutes as acceptable level of regulation in the industry have been hammered out between the Government and the stakeholders, the timber companies. We expect to be able to lift the ban very shortly.

Hon. Government Member: Hear. Hear!

The Vice-President: I hope the hon. Member will take that message back to the Western Province and assure people. Please, inform the timber traders that normal service will resume.


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

The Vice-President: It is very similar to the situation we have in the wildlife sector. Things have become corrupt and nonsensical and there is a need for some sort of moratorium in order to sort them out.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chabala (Kankoyo): Mr Speaker, in today’s edition of the Daily Nation, it says that Government clinics are in a crisis. May His Honour the Vice-President indicate whether, indeed, there is a crisis.

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, if I recall clearly, the hon. Minister of Finance, in bringing his Budget for this year, increased the allocation to the vote for drugs to 200 per cent more than what was allocated in the last Budget. My understanding is that we are running at about 85 per cent availability. In other words, 85 per cent of the time when you want a particular drug from any given clinic, it will be available. This is an improvement on the 50 per cent which was more or less typical of last year.

Sir, I would say this is a storm in a tea cup. There will always be instances where someone will be given a prescription of, for example, mepacrine, and it is not available, but 85 per cent availability is considerably better than 50 per cent. I am given to understand that that is what is obtaining.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muchekela (Lubansenshi): Mr Speaker, there is a very strong positive correlation between good governance and sustained economic growth. At the moment, we seem to be sliding into poor governance.

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Muchekela: May I know how concerned this Government is as regards ensuring that economic growth is sustained through adherence to good governance as much as possible.

  The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I do not know to what the hon. Member is referring when he talks about a correlation between governance and economic growth. Take a country which executes more people than the rest of the countries in the world put together, even for tax offences, which by most people’s standards would be poor governance, yet is the fastest growing economy in the world − the Chinese economy. I think questions about what constitutes good governance, bad governance and growth of the economy are very speculative.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Pande (Kasempa): Mr Speaker, currently, when you go into town, there is so much disorder because of street vending. When visitors come, the impression which they will go back with is that the country is in disorder. Is this the impression that we want the country to give or a state in which we want our country to remain?

The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, if the hon. Member would care to write me half a page of a full essay on what we should do about the street vending problem other than attending to its aesthetics in terms of visitors, I would gladly receive it. Are we supposed to be running a western play, son et lumiere,  the light and sound show for visitors or are we supposed to be attending to the problems of our citizens? We were voted in to attend to the problems of our citizens and they need incomes and a living. That is what we are giving them, subject to whatever constraints we can apply in terms of health, sanitation and welfare.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Kakoma (Zambezi West): Mr Speaker, this Government has been telling the Zambian people that it will be ruling this country through the rule of law. The rule of law in relation to the retention of people who have been arrested by the police is that …


Mr Speaker: Order!

Mr Kakoma: … they must be brought to court within forty-eight hours. We have people such as the Member for Kalomo Central, Hon. Request Muntanga, …

  Hon. Government Members: Murderer!

  Mr Kakoma: … Mr Ackson Sejani and Mr Douglas Siakalima, who were arrested on Monday, 25th February, 2013. Today is Friday, 1st March, 2013, but they have not been brought to court. May I find out why this Government is breaking the rule of law in Zambia by continuing to detain political leaders in prison without charging them or taking them to court.

  Hon. Government Members: They are murderers!

  The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, that is slightly shaky ground in that the question of sub judice is very close to my right here. However, what I would say is that the killing of an individual is a very major event and a serious matter. People are still facing the International Criminal Court, not for personally killing anybody, but for creating an atmosphere and an environment in which people were killed in the Kenyan Election aftermath five years ago. Incitement is a serious matter. It is not a matter where we can just say, “Our bululus happen to be in a police station for more than forty-eight hours, is that a rule of law?”

Mr Speaker, we also want an independent police force and independent courts, just as we have an independent Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ). It was the ECZ that overturned the police’s ban on rallies in Livingstone, including a rally that the PF wanted to hold. While the Zambia Police Force banned rallies, the ECZ gave a go ahead. You can argue whether that and the suspension of the whole election was correct, but we have these independent wings of the Government, including Parliament in which you are asking this particular question. I am not overly worried. Obviously, if time drags on and it is clear that there is some kind of discrimination against people on political grounds, then, I can be worried. At the moment, as far as I am aware, I cannot see it.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}

Mr Simbao (Senga Hill): Mr Speaker, now that it looks obvious that the Opposition is headed for obliteration, what joys can the PF Government share with the Zambian people?


The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I did not quite catch the question, but what we can enjoy is good governance, progress, growth, employment, more drugs in the clinics and more maintenance of the roads.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!




441. Mr Pande (Kasempa) asked the Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication:

(a) when the upgrading of the Kalulushi/Lufwanyama Road to bituminous standard would be completed; and

(b) whether the project would be extended from Lufwanyama to Kankolonkolo (Ingwe) in Kasempa District.
The Deputy Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication (Colonel Kaunda): Mr Speaker, the upgrading of the Kalulushi/Lufwanyama Road to bituminous standard is expected to be completed within the fourth quarter of 2013.

Sir, the project is expected to extend to Kasempa District, joining the M8 Road at Kankolonkolo and will commence as soon as funds are available.

I thank you, Sir.


442. Mr Hamusonde (Nangoma) asked the Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education why examination leakages for the Grade 9 and Grade 12 had continued to occur.

The Deputy Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education (Mr Mabumba): Mr Speaker, leakages of examinations at Grade 9 and Grade 12 could be attributed to the following reasons or factors:

(a) some teachers do not prepare their learners adequately for the examinations;

(b) some teachers fear to be blamed for recording massive failures in national examinations, hence their aiding their candidates during examinations;

(c) head teachers’ failure to brief learners and teachers at school on their roles and responsibilities, and what is expected of the learners during examinations;

(d) in order to record 100 per cent pass rate, some private schools tend to assist learners;

(e) parental pressure; and


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order, on my right!

I think that there are too many people who are speaking whilst the hon. Minister is answering. Please, can you consult quietly.

Continue, hon. Minister.

Mr Mabumba: Mr Speaker, monies to buy examination papers come from parents. Some parents are in the forefront, booking for these papers for their children.

(f) other people see examination papers as an opportunity to earn some additional income. These people will go to extremes to access the examination papers.
Mr Speaker, these are some of the factors that contribute to examination leakages.
Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Hamusonde: Mr Speaker, is the incidence of leakages more rampant in private schools or Government schools?

The Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education (Dr Phiri): Mr Speaker, without an elaborate research being carried out, it is difficult to ascertain which schools are more involved in leakages. For example, in 2012, we had thirty-six reports of examination malpractices. Thirty of them involved pupils and six involved teachers. We have to establish whether the six teachers and thirty pupils came from public or private schools. However, let me say that the reasons we are advancing are more speculative than scientific. There is a need for us to establish the core reasons examination malpractices continue to occur.

Sir, let me take advantage of Hon. Hamusonde’s question to say that the Examination Council of Zambia (ECZ) has been directed to liaise with the stakeholders and examine the Grade 7, Grade 9 and Grade 12 results with a view to finding lasting solutions to the nagging problem of malpractices. However, I know that will just be a stop-gap measure. That is why we are tabling the Teaching Profession Bill to this august House. Over the years, we have not sufficiently monitored the professional conduct and training of teachers in colleges of education. Therefore, we think that, when we are armed with this Act, we might produce lasting solutions to this problem.

Sir, in addition, we are piloting a new school curriculum framework that we hope to evaluate after the end of the school calendar term. In the new curriculum, we hope to introduce competence tests in literacy and numeracy at Grade 1 and 4 in order to establish appropriate interventions for weak pupils, unlike the present system in which every child moves on to the next grade. We carry many passengers and, let me speculate, it is these passengers who panic when the examinations are near and resort to examination malpractices. All this must be verified through a research, which we hope to conduct in the near future.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Ntundu (Gwembe): Mr Speaker, is the Government prepared to learn from countries like Uganda, Rwanda and ‘Sausaflika,’ …

Hon. Government Members: Sausaflika?

Mr Ntundu: Yes, ‘Sausaflika.’


Mr Ntundu: … where, after the examinations at the end of a grade, pupils are re-examined to ensure that they, indeed, qualified for the next grade?

Dr Phiri: Mr Speaker, some of the countries that the hon. Member has mentioned have also asked the same basic question of what they should do. I think that you have heard of some of the problems that beseeched some provinces of South Africa regarding this matter. However, Zambia is not an island. Even the pilot framework that we are implementing in some selected schools is a product of consultations with various stakeholders at home and abroad. We are ready to learn from any source, so long as that will strengthen our education system.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kalila (Lukulu East): Mr Speaker, many people have bemoaned the poor results of our learners across all the grades and, certainly, as hon. Minister of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education, I am sure that he is very concerned about this sad state of affairs. Is there a correlation between these examination malpractices and the poor results that were obtained, or could there be other reasons? If there are other reasons what could they be?

Dr Phiri: Mr Speaker, that is a loaded question. Malpractices could be one little factor. There are several others. The way we have run the education system, this far, trained our teachers and kept them after their training affects their performance. This could be a lack of housing, which is a countrywide problem, remuneration and outstanding allowances. Also, besides that, we have not taken time to look at the syllabi at various levels. As I intimated, there are no competence tests that are being used at strategic points of our education system.

Sir, in the days of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland, one had to pass an examination, for instance, at Standard 4, 5 or 6 before moving up to the next level. That helped to sieve out those students who needed interventions. As much as the teachers are to blame, the system that we are running is not efficient in monitoring the teaching and learning processes. Therefore, there are factors that I can bring but, like I said, a serious research is needed to ascertain the factors that are responsible for the problem so that we address them.

Sir, on the part of the Government, much as the allocation in the education sector is increasing in each Budget year, the challenges far outweigh the allocations. As you might know, most of that is gobbled up in personal emoluments. This leaves very little for us to expand the system, which entails increased pupil-teacher and pupil-textbook ratios. All these need to be considered for us to determine the problem that we are facing and to identify what can be done. Therefore, I accept that there is a lot of work that we need to do, as a ministry.
I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Milambo (Mwembeshi): Mr Speaker, …

Mr Kalaba: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Kalaba: Mr Speaker, you have guided all of us in this House on the need for us to be in the House during sittings. I have noticed that the Patriotic Front (PF) as well as the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) has adhered to that ruling. However, is it in order for the United Party for National Development (UPND), even though their political fortunes are dwindling, to consistently avoid and disregard the very important ruling that has been given to hon. Members of Parliament in the past by staying out of this House?

I need your serious ruling.

Mr Deputy Speaker: Apart from the fact that you have adequately debated your point of order, let me just reach out to the ruling that you are referring to and state that there is a need for all of us to be in the House.

Mr Milambo: Mr Speaker, are there any plans in place to reduce the leakages?

Dr Phiri: Mr Speaker, the plans are multi-faceted. First of all, I said that the ECZ has been directed, …


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order on my right!

Dr Phiri: … together with the Directorate of Standards and Curriculum in the ministry, to call for a serious stakeholders’ indaba to discuss, among other issues, the leakages, so that we find a lasting solution.

 Sir, I also said that, apart from the indaba, we would conduct a serious research to investigate further the problem of leakages. I ended by stating that the Teaching Profession Bill we presented to Parliament will help us to instill professional ethics in our teachers, which they must observe all the time. If there are any other measures that we need to take, we will take them.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Dr Kazonga (Vubwi): Mr Speaker, admittedly, examination leakages are a very complex problem because there are several dimensions to them. For instance, leakages can happen at the setting stage. They can also happen at printing, storage or transportation stages and, of course, during the actual administration. Has the ministry got any information, based on what has been happening over the years, on the stage at which we have most of these leakages? Is it at the administration, transportation or storage stage?

Dr Phiri: If I have to remain honourable, I should avoid speculation. However, you will find it more comforting to hear that, when I was announcing both Grade 9 and Grade 12 examination results, I asked the ECZ to comb the process, from the setting to the actual marking of the examinations papers. This is because, from the setting to the marking stage, there could be some gaps that we seem not to be taking care of. That is now being done, and a comprehensive report will be presented to the stakeholders’ indaba that we have directed them to hold. I hope that, by the end of that indaba, they will have known the stage at which this scourge is most rampant.

I thank you for your submission, hon. Member. We are thinking in the same line. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Brig-Gen Dr Chituwo (Mumbwa): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister is a renowned academician, and I am happy to hear that he is going to research into this very important issue. However, can he consider the fact that, in the not-so-distant past, the questioner, who was an hon. Minister of Education, had a wonderful team to work with. There was the humble, but hardworking lady, Mrs Lillian Kapulu, as Permanent Secretary, as well as good directors like Mr Sikazwe.

Hon. Minister, if you go back to that year, you will find that there were no examination leakages. Surely, you will find something that will tell us what the home-brewed solutions were.

  Dr Phiri: Mr Speaker, I thank Hon. Brig-Gen Dr Chituwo, for the compliments. Why we need to do this scientifically is not for the purpose of comparing the results of this year with those of another. That is not the research we are looking at. We will learn from your rich experiences as hon. Minister and your wonderful PSs and directors. That was your record, and we will not take it away from you. However, the times are not the same. They have changed, and the system has grown since you were hon. Minister of Education. Today, we have more elaborate primary and secondary school systems in place. In short, if we have to learn from your experiences, this research might look at the period you were in administration. However, it is not for me to judge you or the others who came after you in terms of records. This would be unprofessional. Since you have already accorded me the accolades of being a scholar, it would be unscholarly for me to do. 

I thank you, Sir.



443. Mr Hamusonde asked the Minister of Health why hospitals run by churches offered better healthcare and were more efficient in comparison with Government-run hospitals.

   The Deputy Minister of Health (Mr Mulenga): Mr Speaker, the faith-based organisations (FBOs) operating in the health sector work in collaboration with the Churches Health Association of Zambia (CHAZ). Currently, CHAZ has a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Zambian Government, through the Ministry of Health. Among other benefits, the MoU guarantees the Government’s support to CHAZ in form of finances, materials, equipment, human resources, drugs and others. The Government is the largest single funder to CHAZ, funding salaries for health workers and the operational costs in church health institutions.

   Mr Speaker, you may wish to note that, in addition to the Government’s support to CHAZ, the FBOs have access to additional resources, such as finances, human resources, equipment and drugs, from their mother churches and other donors, locally and internationally. However, the Government is committed to ensuring that additional budgetary resources are mobilised and made available to Government-run institutions. We, therefore, urge this august House to support the Ministry of Health budget for extra resources so that we improve services and motivate staff in all health institutions in the country, whether FBO or Government-supported. 

Therefore, Mr Speaker, in order to ascertain whether the hospitals run by CHAZ offer better health care and are more efficient in comparison to Government-run hospitals, the Ministry of Health, in-conjunction with other institutions, will be carrying out a comparative study to determine the quality of the factors of health service delivery such as social services, availability of drugs and equipment, staff motivation, patient/nurse/doctor ratios and other factors in relation to efficiency and quality of health service delivery in Zambia. The data and information derived from this study will provide an insight and empirical evidence with regard to this matter.

Sir, it should also be noted that church-run hospitals are an integral part of the health care system in Zambia. The Government appreciates the role being played by the FBOs through CHAZ. The Government will continue supporting CHAZ, as it is a critical partner in playing a complimentary role in the Government’s effort to improve equity of access to cost effective and quality health to all Zambians, especially those in remote and hard-to-reach areas where most of the FBOs are operating from.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Hamusonde: Mr Speaker, in some cases, when you are sick and go to the University Teaching Hospital (UTH), you are given an appointment of, maybe, two or three months. You will be told to go after three months and, in the process, you can die before the date of the appointment. May I find out why the UTH gives such appointments. Does it mean that there is a lack of specialised doctors or there is something else going on?

Mr Mulenga: Mr Speaker, it must be appreciated that the challenge that we are facing, as a Government, in the Ministry of Health, is that of congestion. The hospital the hon. Member is referring to is overwhelmed. The population of this country is now more than 13 million. There are 25,915 bed spaces in all the health institutions countrywide against a population of 13 million. Therefore, it is true that we are under staffed. This is why the Government has embarked on a programme to construct more health facilities countrywide such as health posts and district hospitals. It is also trying to empower some of the central hospitals so that it can decongest the UTH.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Ms Imenda (Luena): Mr Speaker, …

Mr Masumba: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Masumba: Mr Speaker, thank you for allowing me raise this serious point of order. Yesterday, I made very serious observations in this House where people have taken the Speaker for granted by not complying with the set standards of this House regarding the dress code. The reason I have raised this point of order is that yesterday, our dear colleague, Hon. Sianga, wore a shiny suit; …

Hon. Government Member: Manzi-manzi!

Mr Masumba: … manzi-manzi, and, today, he is wearing a wedding dress.


Mr Masumba: Is he in order to wear a wedding dress to this House?

I need your serious ruling, Sir.


Mr Deputy Speaker: I guess this is one of those points of order that are meant to bring humour in the House. The hon. Member of Parliament is smartly dressed with a white tie and so, he is in order.


Mr Deputy Speaker: May you continue, please.


Ms Imenda: Mr Speaker, in his earlier response, the hon. Minister mentioned that the FBOs have extra resources which make their hospitals offer better health services. I would like to remind the hon. Minister that when we appropriate funds here in the House, one of the highest recipients of …

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

I normally advise that if we have to ask questions, we should do so by making the introductory remarks short, instead of making long statements. I think you have made your introductory remarks. Now, ask your question.

Ms Imenda: Thank you, Sir, for your guidance.

Since the Ministry of Health is one of the ministries that receives the highest appropriations. Can the hon. Minister confirm that the drop in the standards of service delivery by the Government-run hospitals is because a major part of the amount that is appropriated to the ministry goes to administrative costs and emoluments rather than service delivery?

Mr Mulenga: Mr Speaker, I cannot confirm that all the resources appropriated to the Ministry of Health go to administrative costs. The hon. Member of Parliament must appreciate that to run an institution such as the UTH requires a lot of resources. The Ministry of Health, under the PF Government, has paid particular attention to ensuring that we have enough drugs in the health facilities by tripling the budget that we found in 2011 which was just a meagre K93 billion allocated by the MMD Government. However, we tripled that to K279 billion and have now doubled that to over KR500 million. So, this is a milestone which everyone must appreciate.

As I have already mentioned, we have embarked on a programme to ensure that we put up the required infrastructure in the ministry so that we can reduce on the distance that people walk to the health facilities. So, the resources are spent on patients and not all resources go to administration purposes.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.{mospagebreak}


444. Mr Chisala (Chilubi) asked the Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry how many officers in the Ministry participated in the following activities in 2010:

(a) Education Workshop at Falls Park in Livingstone;

(b) Civil Service Fair in Kenya; and

(c) the World Intellectual Property Organisation and Small and Medium Enterprises Training in Malaysia.

The Deputy Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mr Siamunene): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that there was no officer from the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry who participated in the Education Workshop at Falls Park in Livingstone in 2010.

Sir, there was also no officer from the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry who participated in the Civil Service Fair in Kenya in 2010. However, two officers from the ministry participated in the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) and Small and Medium Enterprise training in Malaysia.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, I would like to know the benefits that Zambia got from its participation in the activity mentioned in part (c) of the question.

The Deputy Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mr Mukata): Mr Speaker, the programme is aimed at building capacity among staff with a view to keeping the staff abreast of international best practices. May I, also, indicate that it is WIPO that provides sponsorship for this programme. So, at the end of the day, it is meant to build capacity for the staff.

I thank you, Sir.


445. Mr Chisala asked the Minister of Labour and Social Security how many jobs were created in the country from 2009 to 2011, year by year.

The Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Security (Mr Mbulu): Mr Speaker, according to the employment earnings enquiries (EEE) conducted by the Central Statistical Office (CSO), the jobs that were created in the formal sector were as follows:

  Year  No. of Jobs Created

   2009   52,002

   2010   87,388

   2011    Data not available

Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that the CSO conducts quarterly EEEs which are establishment-based surveys that cover all formal sector companies throughout the country. These statistics are collected with the main objective of measuring and monitoring the dynamics of formal sector employment in the economy in a given year. The above cited figures are, therefore, derived from the net value after comparing figures …


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

I am being distracted. You know I want to pay attention, but the problem is that you, hon. Members on my right, are too close to the Chair.

You may continue, hon. Deputy Minister.

Mr Mbulu: … between years. In view of the limitation of the employment and earnings enquiries in providing detailed statistics on employment, the total employment created, that is, the formal as well as informal sector employment between 2008 and 2012, will only be provided once the findings of the 2012 Labour Force Survey are published and compared with the results of the 2008 Labour Force Survey.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, I would like to know the mechanism that the Government has put in place to create more jobs between now and 2016.

Mr Mbulu: Mr Speaker, the starting point is that the hon. Member for Chilubi Constituency must appreciate that job creation is basically a national challenge and, therefore, requires a national response. From our point of view, as Ministry of Labour and Social Security, I wish to put it on record that we have taken several initiatives to brainstorm and find answers on how best we can create jobs. These initiatives include serious collaboration with identified stakeholders, starting from the International Labour Organisation, the Zambia Federation of Employers as well as the trade unions. However, from the labour point of view, we can only go that far. From a national point of view, I wish the hon. Member of Parliament for Chilubi Constituency could appreciate that the Government has put in place several interventions that are aimed at creating jobs. One such intervention is infrastructure development.

Sir, the hon. Member of Parliament should be fully aware that my Government has embarked on a serious development project of the Link Zambia 8,000 km Road Network Project and we are certain, as a ministry, that this will create in excess of 24,000 jobs. Similarly, there is a positive transformation in the railway sector and we are all aware that once the railway sector takes off, it is also expected to create in excess of 10,000 jobs.

Mr Speaker, it must also be appreciated that the power generation interventions that the Government is putting in place are equally promising to create more jobs for our people. I also know that from the commerce point of view, the Government operates collectively and there is every assurance that the creation of the clusters will, in turn, create jobs.

Sir, Hon. Chisala should equally appreciate that the creation of new districts and provinces is an attempt towards creating more jobs for our people. Overall, as a ministry, we expect growth in the private sector which should guarantee the creation of more sustainable jobs.

I thank you, Sir.


446. Mr Bwalya (Lupososhi) asked the Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry:

(a) when the Government would establish industrial clusters in Luwingu and Chibombo districts;

(b) whether these industrial clusters would include water melon processing plants; and

(c) what measures the Government had taken to assist small-scale producers of watermelons to process the fruit before they sell it.

The Deputy Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mr Taima): Mr Speaker, the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry’s responsibility is policy formulation and creating an enabling environment for private sector-driven businesses to grow.

Sir, as such, the Government, through the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry, in conjunction with its statutory bodies, has developed the industrialisation strategy which seeks to establish industrial clusters in the country, including in Luwingu and Chibombo districts. In this regard, the concerns of Hon. Bwalya have been taken care of.

Mr Speaker, the concept of industrial clusters is a national one and it will bring all the districts on board over a period of three years, starting from 2013 to 2015, subject to the availability of finances to support the construction of the infrastructure. In order to realise what is envisaged under the industrialisation strategy, the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry has further developed the implementation strategy which is a principle guiding document for the development of industrial clusters.

Sir, the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) and Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) will be the lead implementing agencies and are expected to commence implementation this year, once the Industrialisation Programme has been approved by the Cabinet.

Mr Speaker, it should also be noted that the ministry, in April, 2012, had submitted to each hon. Member of Parliament a list of products/commodities which had been identified through a resource endowment mapping which each province and district clusters would be handling, and they were all requested to validate it. So far, only one hon. Member of Parliament has responded. Apparently, it is not Hon. Bwalya.


Mr Taima: Mr Speaker, if watermelons are found in huge quantities and would offer viable economic potential, the Government will consider supporting the private sector players that will establish processing plants. The Government, through the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry, has put in place measures aimed at promoting value addition to primary raw materials and these include:

(a) multi-facility economic zones (MFEZs), under the ZDA;

(b) empowerment programmes under the CEEC; and

(c) holding of training workshops on entrepreneurship for small-scale businesses to assist them to explore other markets and add value to their products, improve packaging and other means, for their products to meet international market standards.

Mr Speaker, processing into finished consumer-ready products of any natural agricultural products, including watermelons, is a business. As such, the Government is promoting support to any of the private sector players who choose to go into the sector in specific localities. Further, the ministry, through parastatals under it, including the ZDA, CEEC and the Patents and Companies Registration Agency (PACRA), in fact, provides business development services to micro, small and medium enterprises such as linking them to large companies which they supply products to, provision of loans, packaging and branding.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Bwalya: Mr Speaker, indeed, I did not respond to the said request by the ministry. However, did the ministry get feedback from the Luwingu District Council concerning the task which was given to us regarding securing land in the district for the development of industrial clusters?

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, I can confirm that there is continuous interaction between the ministry and local authorities, not only in the hon. Member’s constituency. There has been feedback and the process of identifying appropriate land or sites is on-going.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mucheleka (Lubansenshi): Mr Speaker, apart from the local authorities and hon. Members of Parliament, what other institutions is the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry working with, particularly in the Northern Province, to seriously develop the so- much-talked-about industrial clusters?

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, the key institutions that are involved, among others, include the Ministry of Local Government and Housing, local authorities, Zambia Bureau of Standards (ZABS), PACRA, Consumer Competition and Protection Commission (CCPC), Zambia Weights and Measures Agency (ZW&MA), Zambia Chamber for Small and Medium Enterprises (ZCSMBA) and Zambia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ZACCI).

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


447. Mr Bwalya asked the Minister of Home Affairs:

(a) how many vehicles were stolen and recovered from Milyashi Farming Block, in Chililabombwe from 2006 to 2012; and

(b) what measures the Government had taken to protect the lives and property of farmers in the farming block from crime.

The Deputy Minister of Home Affairs (Mrs Mwamba): Mr Speaker, …


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order, on both my left and right hand sides!

Mrs Mwamba: … eighteen motor vehicles were stolen from Milyashi Farming Block in Chililabombwe between 2006 and 2012. Out of the stolen motor vehicles, only seven were recovered. The Zambia Police Service has, so far, arrested five suspects in connection with the theft of motor vehicles in the Milyashi Farming Block. The five suspects have since appeared in court and have been convicted.

The Government has deployed officers from the School of Public Order and Maintenance in Kamfinsa and from general duties to conduct both foot and motorised patrols in the farming block in order to fight and prevent crime in the area. The local residents have also formed community crime prevention units as this complements police efforts in the fight against crime. Plans are also underway to establish a police post in Milyashi Farming Block when funds are available, as this will greatly help boost the fight against crime in the area.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.

Mr Bwalya: Mr Speaker, this area seems to be prone to crime and this is actually putting the lives of the people in the farming block at risk. Would it not be wise to establish a permanent police post or road block so that some of these crimes are prevented.

Mrs Mwamba: Mr Speaker, there is already a road block in the area and I just mentioned that we already have plans underway to establish a permanent police post in the area.

Thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, what are the nationalities of the five suspects that were convicted? In addition, the hon. Minister keeps referring to the Zambia Police Service when it is the Zambia Police Force.

Mrs Mwamba: Mr Speaker, it is a police service and not a police force.


Mrs Mwamba: Of the five criminals that were arrested, three were of Congolese nationality and two were Zambians.

Thank you, Mr Speaker.


448. Mr Mbewe (Chadiza) asked the Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication:

(a) when the Government would facilitate the construction of communication towers at the following basic schools in Chadiza District:

(i) Manje;
(ii) Zingalume;
(iii) Nsadzu; and
(iv) Luli; and

(b) what the average cost of constructing one tower currently was.

Colonel Kaunda: Mr Speaker, without sounding like an old broken record, let me state that surveys to assess requirements for extending mobile communication towers and associated services to other unserviced areas, including Manje, Zingalume, Nsadzu and Luli, will commence within the first half of this year. The objective is to have countrywide coverage by 2015. The average cost of putting up a tower together with associated equipment to allow the provision of mobile communication services is approximately KR1,175,000.

Mr Speaker, I thank you.


449. Prof Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda) asked the Minister of Agriculture and Livestock:

(a) what the total population of cattle in Nalikwanda Parliamentary Constituency currently was;

(b) whether the Government had any plans to construct dip tanks and to provide other veterinary facilities in the following areas of the constituency:

(i) Mulwa;
(ii) Nakanyaa;
(iii) Litawa;
(iv) Namengo;
(v) Sibongo;
(vi) Namusheshe; and
(vii) Imayo; and

(c) how many veterinary officers were currently working in the constituency.

The Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Livestock (Mr Monde): Mr Speaker, the estimated cattle population in Nalikwanda Parliamentary Constituency is 15,006.

As regards part (b) of the question, no dip tanks have been constructed in any of the aforementioned areas in Nalikwanda Parliamentary Constituency. This is because the environmental conditions of hot sand and flood plains of the area do not allow for the survival of most ticks that transmit corridor diseases or east coast fever. However, two livestock service centres are being built in the constituency at Nalweti and Simulumbe. The centre at Nalweti includes a new camp house. These livestock service centres will be used for extension services such as vaccinations, de-worming and training of farmers.

Mr Speaker, the veterinary officers are stationed at district level, whilst veterinary assistants are stationed at camp levels. There are currently two veterinary assistants working in the constituency at Luandui and Mongu Central Veterinary camps. Litawa and Luatembo Veterinary camps are vacant as officers who were there recently retired. The Government has recruited five veterinary assistants for the Western Province. Two of them will be posted to Litawa and Luatembo.

I thank you, Sir.


450. Professor Lungwangwa (on behalf of Mr Kunda (Muchinga)) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a) why local councils countrywide had converted play parks into residential plots; and

(b) whether the local authorities would be compelled to create new play parks for children.

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr Kufuna): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform this august House that there is no policy of converting play parks, into residential plots, and where such is found absolutely necessary, a process of re-zoning is followed. However, there are cases where some of the play parks have been illegally squatted upon. In most cases, where the local authority discovers illegal occupation of play parks, squatters have been evicted and a number of structures demolished to preserve the land for its intended use.

All the newly-planned areas provide for public open spaces and play parks. Local authorities are now being encouraged to get into public-private-partnerships (PPPs) in the development of parks considering the limited capacity of most councils to develop and maintain parks and will be leasing them following thematic use, that is, study, botanical, sports, and recreational parks among others. Some of the parks in Lusaka are on lease to the private sector though these leases are being renewed and revised to make these parks more accessible to the general public.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Ntundu: Mr Speaker, it is a well-known fact that …

Mr Pande: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, a while ago, the hon. Deputy Minister of Home Affairs insisted that the Zambia Police Force was the Zambia Police Service. I have the Constitution of Zambia, Chapter 107, which clearly states that it is the Zambia Police Force. So, I do not know which Act she used. Is she in order to have misled the House and the country?

Mr Deputy Speaker: Will the hon. Minister of Home Affairs shed more light on that issue? Is it the Zambia Police Force or Zambia Police Service?

The Minister of Home Affairs (Mr E. C. Lungu): Mr Speaker, what we have, as provided for in the law, is the Zambia Police Force, which is, in fact, a creature of the Constitution. Over the passage of time, people have resorted to calling it the Zambia Police Service purely to indicate that it is a police force which is providing a service, but we concede that what we have under the law established is the Zambia Police Force.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}

Mr Deputy Speaker: I think that puts an end to the argument which has been going on for some time. So, it is the Zambia Police Force by law. Now, those who talk about the Zambia Police Service maybe expressing intentions that it should be a service in future.

The hon. Member for Gwembe may continue.

Mr Ntundu: Mr Speaker, before the point of order was raised, I was saying that it is well-known fact that play parks, including sporting facilities countrywide, have suffered massive encroachment. Houses have been built in most play parks. For example, in Chawama, people have built houses in the play park. Can the hon. Minister state the PF Government’s policy regarding the creation of more recreation facilities as well as play parks. Let him come out in the open because this is a serious issue.

Mr Kufuna: Mr Speaker, Hon. Ntundu has described a situation which used to obtain sometime back, but the Government has put a stop to that. Now, we are carrying out an inventory to find out how many parks are still operational because we want to create parks where they do not exist.

I thank you, Sir.


451. Professor Lungwangwa (on behalf of Mr Kunda) asked the Minister of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs:

(a) whether the Government had any plans to construct palaces for the following traditional leaders in Serenje District:

(i) Chieftainess Serenje;

(ii) Chief Mailo; and

(iii) Chief Chisomo; and

(b) if so, when the plans would be implemented.

The Minister of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs (Professor Luo): Mr Speaker, the construction of places will commence this year, 2013, after the completion of preparatory work. As we all know in this august House, there is a provision in the 2013 Budget for the construction and rehabilitation of palaces in amounts totalling to KR11,215,500. The Ministry of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication has submitted the plans for palaces which will be discussed by the House of Chiefs as it convenes on 18th March, 2013.

Let me also take this opportunity, Mr Speaker, to say to this august House that our assessment around the country depicts that we do not have many palaces as per the English Dictionary. What we have are just little huts in some places or just what would be a house. So, I think we have a lot of work to do to construct these palaces. We have decided, as a ministry, to do a lot of preparatory work of assessments, proper drawings, and to listen to histories of particular chiefdoms so that the palaces depict this history. We also want to add value to the palaces so that, like everywhere else in the world, they are part of our tourist attractions.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, there are traditions in certain tribes where, when a chief dies, they have to shift to a new place. What has the Government done to make sure that when a palace is built, this type of a tradition is not followed?

Professor Luo: Mr Speaker, this is why, firstly, we have decided that two homes will built for every chief so that those kind of traditions are taken care of. Chiefs will have an institutional house which cannot be moved. It will be the house for the chief. Then, they will have what will be called the family home so that when they die, that is the house from which their family cannot shift. I am sure the chiefs would like to leave their family in that house.

Secondly, this is why we are subjecting it to debate in the House of Chiefs so that the chiefs regulate themselves and nobody, including a politician, will start putting spanners and politics into this discourse. The chiefs would have regulated themselves.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mucheleka: Mr Speaker, may I find out from the hon. Minister how long it is supposed to take to resolve wrangles in certain chiefdoms where, for instance, disputes arise because someone who is not supposed to be a chief claims to be one.

Professor Luo: Mr Speaker, the question was about palaces. However, I will give the hon. Member a bonus answer.

Mr Speaker, resolving a conflict in any situation, whether you are talking about wrangles of chiefs or any other, is a very difficult issue. This is why there are people who go to study conflict resolution to deal with the complexities of resolving conflicts. That is point number one.

Sir, point number two is the fact that, over the years, in Zambia, as we politicised the chiefdoms to gain political mileage, we destroyed what is called lineage. Therefore, we did not build those institutions to a level where they should have been built. There are very few chiefdoms which even have documentation of what is involved in becoming a chief. So, what has happened, over the years, is that any clever person, including those that will come from across the borders, can decide that they are going to be chief and we have a lot of those.

In this regard, the ministry has instituted inquiries all over the country. Secondly, we have asked the Cabinet Office to stop employing staff in my ministry for the sake of it. We, instead, want anthropologists and historians employed so that they can go and live in the chiefdoms because we believe there are still people who know that part of history so that the history of every chiefdom will be written and we will have documentation that will find itself not only in our museums, but our public institutions such as libraries. This will enable the people to know the correct information and have knowledge of each chiefdom. These books will even find themselves in the Judiciary so that they are used in the resolution of cases of wrangles.

Therefore, the simple answer, hon. Member, is that it will take us a long time because we also want to take it up from a very professional angle instead of trying to do what I call ‘quick resolution’. So, it may take us a couple of years so that we leave a legacy, as the PF, of what professionalism means.

I thank you, Sir.


452. Dr Kazonga asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a) how many houses the National Housing Authority (NHA) constructed in the following categories from October, 2011 to September, 2012 countrywide:

(i) low cost;

(ii) medium cost; and

(iii) high cost;

(b) where the houses were located; and

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

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

Business was suspended from 1045 hours until 1100 hours.

[MR DEPUTY SPEAKER in the Chair]

Mr Kufuna: Mr Speaker, I wish to inform this august House that the total number of houses constructed by the NHA from October, 2011, to September, 2012 countrywide in the respective categories in the question is as follows:

Category No. of houses

Low Cost 9

Medium Cost 43

High Cost 80

The houses are located in the following areas:

(a) Twin Palm;

(b) Lusaka Ibex Hill;

(c) Nyumbayanga; and

(d) Great North Road (SOS)

Sir, the total cost of the project is KR193 million.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, the housing demands in this country take the shape of a pyramid, meaning that there is more demand for low cost houses, seconded by medium cost and finally high cost. What is the Government doing to encourage the construction of more low cost houses as opposed to high cost houses?

Mr Kufuna: Mr Speaker, we have asked all the local authorities to each provide land of not less than 70 hectares where the NHA is going to construct houses, including low cost ones. We have also asked them to provide land where 100 houses will be constructed for them.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, I would like to know whether these houses are going to be for sale or if they will be put up for rent.

The Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mrs Kabanshi): Mr Speaker, some of these houses will be sold, while others will be retained by the local authorities for rent.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Simbao (Senga Hill): Mr Speaker, what plans does the ministry have for the houses that are in Misisi and other compounds to ensure that they have flushable toilets?

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, Misisi is on the programme to be upgraded. By this, I mean that services will be delivered to that compound. Toilets will be constructed and the water provision will be improved.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, may I know when the programme of upgrading Misisi and other compounds will start.

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, it will start very soon.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chishiba (Kafulafuta): Mr Speaker, what is the rationale behind selling some of these houses that will be built instead of keeping them for the purposes of putting them up for rent?

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, as you know, the NHA had a lot of liquidity problems. Selling the houses will enable it to get some funds.

I thank you, Sir.


Dr Kazonga asked the Minister of Finance what the national average prices of the following essential commodities were in September, 2011, and September, 2012:

(a) 01 x 25kg bag of breakfast mealie-meal;

(b) 01 x 25kg bag of roller mealie-meal;

(c) 1kg of fresh bream fish; and

(d) a 2.5 litre container of cooking oil

The Minister of Finance (Mr Chikwanda): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that as at September, 2011, and September, 2012, the average prices for selected commodities were as follows:

Item         September 2011(K)               September 2012 (K)

01 x 25kg of breakfast mealie-meal  43,867.00   48,528.00

01 x 25kg of roller mealie-meal  33,170.00   34,177.00

1kg of fresh bream fish   14,981.00   16,424.00

2.5 litre container of cooking oil  32,128.00   34,628.00

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, does the Government have a plan to improve the dissemination of such information by the CSO in the form of a newsletter such as the Farmer’s Gazette, which we receive regularly, either through a quarterly or monthly publication? This is because the website from which information from the CSO can be obtained is inaccessible. Hence, it is difficult to get this information.

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, the good news I have for Dr Kazonga is that the CSO has started publishing a monthly bulletin of statistics and I urge the hon. Member of Parliament to interact with the people at the CSO so that he can encourage and inspire them.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Simbao (Senga Hill): Mr Speaker, I do not know whether I got the hon. Minister well on the price of fish. I heard that, in September, 2011, the price was KR14 per kg or KR15 per kg and in September, 2012, it was K60,000 per kg.


Mr Simbao: Mr Speaker, I am sorry I got it wrong. The price in 2012 was KR16 per kg.

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, in September, 2012, a 25 kg bag of breakfast meali-meal was about K,48,000. However, now, the price of mealie-meal has gone over K50,000 despite the intervention by the President who said that the price should be K50,000. In some places in Zambia, the price is over K100,000. What has necessitated this increase in the mealie-meal prices?

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, the prices of essential commodities fluctuate. They are a function of supply and demand equilibrium or disequilibrium. We do not have price controls. Therefore, the role of the Government is limited to appealing to the millers to exercise a bit of responsibility in their pricing. I think that the more plausible solution is to ensure that there is enough maize so that the prices can come down.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kaingu (Mwandi): Mr Speaker, are these average prices of the commodities for rural areas or urban areas?

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, these average prices are for the country. Obviously, for places that are very much on the periphery, prices tend to be higher if you have to factor in transport costs. In the end, the solution is to localise the milling in these places, that is assuming that the maize is available in the various localities. Localising the milling of maize will remove that cost on mealie-meal attributed to transport.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, is there any way of relating these prices to the minimum wage?

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, that is a very delicate exercise.


Mr Chikwanda: Mr Speaker, I think it is a very unsustainable exercise because it will get us into price control. When I was in Solwezi on the 5th of February, 2013, on the occasion of opening the Indo-Zambia Bank Branch, people raised the question about the shortage of meali-meal. I told challenged them that, as opposed to looking at this as a challenge, they should look at it as an opportunity where enterprising local people can set up more milling companies in the various localities and thereby take care of this matter.

I thank you, Sir.


454. Professor Lungwangwa (on behalf of Mr Kunda) asked the Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development when the Government would rehabilitate Isaninga Dam in Chief Chibale’s area in Muchinga Parliamentary Constituency.

The Deputy Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Development (Mr Zulu): Mr Speaker, I wish to begin by making a correction to the name of the dam. The correct name is Saninga Dam, and not Isaninga.

Sir, the Government plans to rehabilitate Saninga Dam by September, 2013. Works will begin in July, 2013 and go on for three months. The cost for rehabilitating the dam is KR250,000.

I thank you, Sir.


455. Professor Lungwangwa asked the Minister of Youth and Sport:

(a) how much money budgeted for youth development activities was disbursed from 1st September, 2011 to 30th September, 2012, province by province; and

(b) on what developmental activities the money was spent.

Mr Deputy Speaker: The hon. Minister of Youth and Sport.

Mr Kambwili: Landa, mwaiche.

Mr Masumba: Imwe nimwebo ba boss.

Mr Deputy Speaker: I am very close to you, here, and it is good to see the hon. Minister and his hon. Deputy arguing about who is boss.

Please, continue.


The Deputy Minister of Youth and Sport (Mr Masumba): Mr Speaker, let me take this opportunity to congratulate Mr Namulambe on his victory in the just-ended by-elections.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Masumba: Let me also take this opportunity to congratulate the PF in the North-Western Province for scooping the majority of the seats at ward level. Out of the seventeen by-elections, we managed to get thirteen.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Kambwili: Nailowa PF!

Mr Masumba: Mr Speaker, the following are the figures per province:

Province Amount 

Central 13,500

Copperbelt 214,000
Eastern 320,000

Luapula 404,500

Lusaka 545,000

Northern and Muchinga 370,000

North-Western 301,000

Southern 272,000

Western 367,000

Sir, the monies were spent on the following:

(a) supporting youth entrepreneurial activities, through grants and loans, from the Youth Development Fund (YDF); and

(b) supporting youth skills training programmes at Youth Resource Centres (YRCs) to empower youths with life and vocational skills to improve their well-being.

With regard to the K11.842 billion YDF allocation in the 2012 National Budget, the disbursement was done from 1st November to 24th December, 2012. Therefore, this disbursement is out of the period covered by the question.

I thank you, Sir.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, I do not know whether I got the response of the hon. Deputy Minister clearly. The figures I have, here, include K13,500 for Central Province. If that is correct, why do we have such a small amount for Central Province when other provinces have much higher figures?

Mr Masumba: Mr Speaker, I think that the information that Hon. Professor Lungwangwa has is incorrect because he is talking about K13,000, yet the figure that we have is K13,500 …


The Minister of Youth and Sport (Mr Kambwili): Mr Speaker, the correct figure is KR513,500. It was typographic error.

Sir, let me also take this opportunity to state that issues of youth development are cross-cutting. When we talk about the total disbursed amount, it is almost 80 per cent the budget of the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education and a large chunk of the budget of the Ministry of Defence, which go towards the training of the youths. The figures that we gave earlier are specifically for the YDF. If you are talking about all the money that the Government disbursed for youth development activities, it is more than what we have stated because the issue is cross-cutting.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}

Mr Ng’onga (Kaputa): Mr Speaker, we all know that youth development and youth activities in all districts and constituencies are important. What measures are there to ensure that even the youths of Kaputa benefit from this fund? As I speak, we are unable to benefit because the questionnaires that are designed are far beyond what the youths of Kaputa can process.

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, I totally agree with the sentiments of the hon. Member. However, I assure him that, this year, we are going to have a seminar for District Commissioners (DCs) to teach them how to process the application forms. In turn, they will teach the youths and go through the application forms with them. We will also involve hon. Members of Parliament to help sensitise the youths in their constituencies and in villages so that this money can also go to people in the remotest of areas.

Sir, we were disappointed last year, while analysing the disbursements, because we found that most of the money went to the urban areas of the provincial centres, yet this money is meant for all Zambians. Therefore, before we disburse money this year, we will involve hon. Members of Parliament and the DCs. Each DC will take responsibility of the districts to make sure that people in the outlying areas also benefit from this fund.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, there is what we call positive discrimination. Poverty levels in the Western and Luapula provinces are very high. Why do you not focus more attention on these two provinces?

Mr Kambwili: Mr Speaker, when disbursing this money, we look at the population in the provinces. The higher the population, the more money a province is given. If the hon. Member wants to get more money, then, he should produce more youths so that we give them more.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, last year, the hon. Minister did a good job across the country. However, it was reported in some media that this money was given to his girlfriends.


Mr Mbewe: Can he clarify this issue for us.

Hon. Government Members: Question!

Mr Deputy Speaker: I will not allow that question.



456. Mr Mbewe asked the Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication:

(a) whether the Zambian Airways Limited had been liquidated;

(b) if so, when the liquidation took place and who the liquidators were;

(c) how many workers lost employment as a result of the liquidation; and

(d) whether all the workers had been paid, as of 30th June, 2012.

Colonel Kaunda: Mr Speaker, Zambian Airways Limited has not been liquidated, but went into voluntary receivership with a view of restructuring it. The company has not been re-structured.

Sir, the receivership took effect on 9th January, 2009, and the receiver is Kieran Day. The addresses are as follows: C/O Figtree House, No. 1 Warthog Road, Kabulonga; and P.O. Box 320181, Woodlands, Lusaka. The telephone number is 0211262773.

Sir, 107 employees lost employment as a result of this receivership.

Mr Speaker, none of the workers who lost employment have been paid from the time Zambian Airways went into receivership. The receiver is handling the matter, and the workers will be paid as soon as the assets of the company have been disposed of, if the company fails to re-structure.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, the former workers at Zambian Airways Limited have waited for a long time to be paid their dues. Can the Government give an assurance that those workers, who are now destitute, will still get their money after the receivership process is finished?

Colonel Kaunda: Mr Speaker, as soon as the receiver finishes his job, the workers will be paid.

I thank you, Sir.


457. Mr Mpundu (Nchelenge) asked the Minister of Community Development, Mother and Child Health when the Government would provide decent housing for the people living with disabilities at Kabombo Blind Centre in Nchelenge District.

The Minister of Community Development, Mother and Child Health (Dr Katema): Mr Speaker, Kabombo Blind Centre was established by an association for the blind, which brought together persons with disabilities for subsistence fishing and farming along Lake Mweru and the surrounding areas. The centre is not among those that fall under the Zambia Agency for Persons with Disabilities (ZAPD).

Sir, under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, it is encouraged to promote community-based rehabilitation and independent living in the local communities rather than institutional housing. However, funds permitting, the Department of Community Development will work with the community at Kabombo to construct their own houses using the Community Self-Help Initiative Programme.

I thank you, Sir.


458. Mr Ng’onga (Kaputa) (on behalf of Mr Njeulu) (Sinjembela)) asked the Minister of Home Affairs:

(a) when the following police posts would be upgraded to police stations:

(i) Nangweshi;

(ii) Sioma; and

(iii) Natukoma; and

(b) when the ministry would build houses for police officers in the areas mentioned at (a).

The Deputy Minister of Home Affairs (Chilangwa): Mr Speaker, depending on economic activities, population growth and crime rates in the areas, the Government might upgrade Nangweshi and Natukoma police posts to police station status when funds are available. Sioma Police will be turned into a district police station in line with its new district status.

Mr Speaker, the Government is in the process of tendering for the construction of 12,500 housing units for police officers countrywide. Out of this number, 793 are earmarked for construction in the Western Province, and it is expected that some of the houses will be built in Nangweshi, Sioma and Natukoma.

I thank you, Sir.


459. Mr Ng’onga (on behalf of Mr Njeulu) asked the Minister of Lands, Natural resources and Environmental Protection:

(a) whether the Government was aware of any economic value of the ‘devil’s claw’ plant, which grew in some parts of the Western Province;

(b) if so, when the ministry would lift the ban on harvesting, selling and exporting the plant; and

(c) what plans, if any, the Government had to export the plant to neighbouring countries like Namibia.

The Deputy Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication (Dr Mwali) (on behalf of The Deputy Minister of Lands, Natural resources and Environmental Protection (Mr Chingimbu)): Mr Speaker, we will lift the ban just before the start of harvesting time, which is April of this year. Not only do we have intentions to export the plant to neighboring countries, but also hope to Europe and Asia, where it will fetch higher prices.

I thank you, Sir.

Professor Lungwangwa: Mr Speaker, this seems to be a very important item. Can the hon. Minister shed more light on the economic and medical value of this plant called the devil’s claw which, I think, a number of us do not know about.

The Minister of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection (Mr Simuusa): Mr Speaker, this plant actually contains iodideglycosides, which can treat arthritis, joint conditions and muscle pains in the elderly people. This is commonly used in Europe and Asia. It has been found very effective, hence the high demand for this plant. Economically, it means that since it is a proven medical remedy, it is on high demand.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kaingu: Mr Speaker, are you able to provide us with a sample of this plant?


Mr Simuusa: Mr Speaker, yes, I can. Actually, I have it in the office. I almost brought it to the House, but I thought that, maybe, the hon. Members would have not appreciated it. If you want to see it, you can come to my office.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Pande: Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister planning to grow this plant on a large scale?

Mr Simuusa: Mr Speaker, attempts to grow this plant have failed. It is quite unusual. We are now trying to get as much help as possible and conduct research to see what we need in order to make this plant grow. It is a wild plant which is found in the Western Province. We will try to get these research people to help us but, for now, we have failed to grow it.

I thank you, Sir.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Speaker, if I got the hon. Minister correctly, he said that the ban will be lifted in April. What was the reason for banning the harvesting, selling and exporting of this plant?

Mr Simuusa: Mr Speaker, the first reason the harvesting of this plant was banned is that of conservation. It was going out in very large and uncontrolled quantities because of high demand. Secondly, it is a question of who is benefiting from this resource. This plant is only found in this part of the world, hence the high demand. We found that when our people were digging this plant, they were selling a bag for K50,000 but, out there, it was going for more than US$2 a kilogramme. It is the same logic which applies with the timber from the Western Province. We have woods such as rosewood, teak and mukwa where our people only get about K1 million. If these were to be exported, we would be talking about huge sums of money. So, it was with a view to doing the right thing and getting the value for it. It is better to develop this resource, market it properly in Europe and Asia and put proper regulations in place so that we can get its value.  So, those are the main reasons we can give at the moment.

I thank you, Sir.

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha (Keembe): Mr Speaker, since this wonderful plant has such economic and healing value, before the hon. Minister lifts the ban on its harvest, is it possible to change the name from the devil’s claw to another name?


Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Speaker, it cannot be possible that a Christian nation is exporting the devil’s claw.


Mr Simuusa: Mr Speaker, that is a very interesting request. With your permission, I will bring the plant to the House and lay it on the Table for all to see what it looks like. It actually looks like a devil’s claw.


Mr Simuusa: Sir, that is its original name but, as the House, we can decide on what should be done about that name.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.{mospagebreak}

Mr Sianga (Sesheke): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister whether the bags that were confiscated by the Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) and the Forestry officers are still in their custody or they have been disposed of. We all know that this ban will be lifted in April. Are those bags that were confiscated, therefore, going to be given back to the owners or not?

Mr Simuusa: Mr Speaker, the confiscated bags, including timber, are still under the custody of the ministry and the court sheriffs who are also involved. So, we still have those items and we will decide on the best way of getting rid of them as we go forward.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mbewe: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out if the plant has any intellectual property protection.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Simuusa: Mr Speaker, currently, it does not have an intellectual property protection. That is why I am saying that we probably need to look at this resource carefully because it is medically proven internationally, but no one has a patent on it.

I thank you, Sir.


460. Ms Sayifwanda (Zambezi East) asked the Minister of Local Government and Housing:

(a) whether the Government had any plans to transfer the administration of the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) from the Ministry of Local Government and Housing to the National Assembly Constituency offices; and

(b) if not, what plans the Government had to assist the local authorities in the administration of the CDF, considering that the local authorities were already overwhelmed with other responsibilities.

The Deputy Minister of Local Government and Housing (Mr N. Banda): Mr Speaker, the Government has no immediate plans to transfer the administration of the CDF from the Ministry of Local Government and Housing to the National Assembly Constituency offices, as the administration of the CDF is governed by Section 425 of the Local Government Act, Cap 281 of the Laws of Zambia.

Sir, the current administrative procedure and the process is in conformity with the principles of accountability and the transparency of public funds where the legislative wing of the Government apportions funds in the National Budget, and cannot be mandated to carry out the Budget execution process at the same time.

Mr Speaker, as a nation, it is important to learn the best way to manage the CDF to avoid the usual abuse. In this regard, it is also important to underscore the oversight role of Parliament on the use of public funds.

Sir, the Government intends to pass a CDF Bill in order to enhance accountability in the utilisation and management of the CDF. Further, the CDF will, in the long run, be remitted through the single Treasury system so that there is an efficient and effective flow of funds from the Treasury to the CDF accounts.

In addition to the above measures, the Government also wishes to introduce two windows for the accessibility of the CDF to both the community and district projects. This is meant to align the projects to the national strategic focus towards the Decentralisation Policy. This calls for the strengthening of the institutional and financial mechanism over the utilisation and management of the CDF.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Ms Sayifwanda: Mr Speaker, I would like to find out find from the hon. Minister if at all it will be prudent for the ministry to repeal the Local Government Act just because of the abuse that is being experienced by some local authorities in some constituencies.

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, a lot is being done by the local authorities and the guidelines on how the money should be utilised were launched a few days ago. Furthermore, the Bill that will be tabled soon will also help with the management of the CDF.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbulakulima (Chembe): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister will probably agree with me that the focus or ichisendo of the CDF is basically on the shoulders of the hon. Members of Parliament who are normally innocent with regard to the corruption involved in the expenditure of the fund. I would like to find out what efforts are being made to remove the perception that the funds are actually misused by the innocent hon. Members of Parliament who have literally no control over this money, as you have indicated.

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, that is why, in the upcoming Bill, there will be two windows of disbursing these funds. The first one will be from the community while the second one will be from the district projects. Therefore, some of the projects will be coming from the communities as it has always been while the others will be coming through the management of the councils.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Taundi (Mangango): Mr Speaker, last year’s CDF came very late, thereby making it difficult for the projects to be implemented, especially in the rainy season. I would like to find out from the hon. Minister when we will receive this year’s allocation.

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, through the communication that we have received from the Treasury, we are hoping to get the first amount in June, 2013 and the second lot will be disbursed in July.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, the issue relating to the CDF, which is worrying other hon. Members of Parliament, is the bureaucracy that is setting in from the disbursement to the utilisation of this fund. With the recent memorandums that have been issued to the council secretaries, we find that it is taking so long to embark on the approved projects. I would like to find out from the hon. Minister what is being done to shorten the authorisation levels from the constituencies where we know for sure that your officers do not go to look at the projects that we are discussing so that we can have these projects implemented as quickly as the money is given to the constituencies.

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, I am not sure which circulars have been sent to the hon. Members of Parliament, but the communication which I have received from the hon. Members of Parliament talked about the projects being brought and approved by the ministry. I think that is the only way that we are going to monitor the projects that will be done in the constituencies. Most of the hon. Members of Parliament have been coming to me, especially where the council officers have been involved, to try to implement that projects that were not talked about in the council meeting or raised by the community.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Deputy Speaker: Hon. Minister, I am one of those who has received a letter in which the Acting Permanent Secretary (PS) stated that we should not spend money on projects that belong to line ministries. I think that you have to look at that issue because we have hon. Ministers from various ministries that are saying that the CDF can be used while, on the other hand, your ministry is saying that money should not be spent on projects that belong to the line ministries. That was just for you to take into account.

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, …

Mr Deputy Speaker: Sorry, that was just for you to take into account and, maybe, you should look at that issue.

Mr Mucheleka: Mr Speaker, I would like to express a serious concern with regard to the management and utilisation of the CDF. We seem to have a lot of issues with the current system. I would like to find out from the hon. Minister if at all the principal officers in the local authorities have any authority, whatsoever, to change the projects that have been approved and submitted for approval to the full council meetings.

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, the officers from the Ministry of Local Government and Housing have no powers, whatsoever, to change the projects that were agreed on in the council meeting.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Katuka (Mwinilunga): Mr Speaker, when we talk about decentralisation, it means devolving power to the bottom. When the money, which comes from the ministry, goes to the districts without power, they have to, again, apply to the ministry for that money. Would it be prudent for the ministry not to send the money, but keep it so that it is applied for from the Ministry Headquarters?

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, when the Government starts to implement decentralisation, which is devolving some of the functions and resources to the local authorities and to the grassroots structures, it will not mean that the connection between the lower organs and the Central Government will be broken. Therefore, as we are devolving the functions and the resources to the lower organs, these people also have to be monitored to ensure that what the Government wants to implement is implemented.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr I. Banda (Lumezi): Mr Speaker, can the hon. Minister elaborate further on the second window. At the moment, the CDF Committee is sitting and will later seek approval from the full council. Already, these are two windows. Which second window, therefore, is she talking about? Could she elaborate further?

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, the windows will be coming from the budgeting levels. At the moment, only communities come up with projects. When we create the second window, the management of the local authorities will also sit and come up with projects to be implemented using the CDF.

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

The hon. Member for Gwembe may ask his supplementary question.

Mr Ntundu: Mr Speaker, I thank you.

PF, muyanda kuchi nyonganya.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Ntundu: Mufuna ku sokoneza.

The Deputy Speaker: Order!

What do you mean?

Mr Ntundu: It means that they want to complicate things. Hon. Minister, you are also an elected hon. Member of Parliament. What would be the role of hon. Members of Parliament if projects were being approved by your ministry? What would be the use of the CDF? Do not complicate matters, please, for the sake of Zambians.

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

You have asked your question.

Mrs Kabanshi: Mr Speaker, I do not understand why hon. Members are raising their tempers. This Government wants to ensure that everything is transparent. The Government wants to know what is being done in the different constituencies.

I thank you, Sir.

Ms Imenda: Mr Speaker, the CDF is supposed to enable the development of a constituency. It is an empowerment tool for the people through their hon. Members of Parliament. Can the hon. Minister confirm that the intention of the Government is to give the power of administering the CDF to the DCs for campaign purposes. 


Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

The hon. Minister will answer. I know that the concerns being expressed are not only from hon. Members of Parliament on my left. I know that hon. Members on my right are equally concerned.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Deputy Speaker: Hon. Minister, this is an issue that you have to review because it concerns quite a number of us, if not all Members of Parliament. In light of this information, I will allow two or three more questions before we conclude.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Lieutenant-General Shikapwasha: Mr Speaker, I have been in Parliament for ten years now. The CDF was instituted at a time when hon. Members of Parliament were asking for direct development money into constituencies. This fund is specifically for this purpose.

At the time of discussion, the records of this august House will say of that there was no need for the district to be involved. Even the councils became only agents of disbursement. They did not control how the money was being spent. The money was specifically for constituencies’ development. My request to the hon. Minister, therefore, is that she should not forget why the CDF provision was instituted. The purpose of this money was to ensure that there was development in the constituencies that could not be brought about by the line money given at ministry level.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear! 

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

I think that this was more in the realm of advice rather than a question.

The hon. Member for Luanshya may pose his question.

Mr Chungu (Luanshya): Mr Speaker, I am concerned with the answers that are coming from the hon. Minister.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear! 

Mr Chungu: The hon. Minister says that some projects will be coming from the communities and others from councils. Where are we, as Members of Parliament? What are we going to be doing in the area of the CDF? Development that is being taken to constituencies should be done through hon. Members of Parliament.

She talked about bringing a Bill to the House.  I do not think that there will be people who will support that Bill in this House …

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chungu: … because it takes away the power of the Member of Parliament in a particular area. I would rather she removed that article from the Bill because it will not be supported in this House.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Deputy Speaker: Order!

Hon. Minister, you have heard the views from both my left and my right. In all fairness, it is advisable that you review this matter because we can go on and on debating this issue, which is of interest to all of us. As you have heard, you need to review this matter.

In view of my earlier decision, I have to put an end to this debate.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!




The Vice-President (Dr Scott): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn.

Question put and agreed to.


The House adjourned at 1202 hours until 1430 hours on Tuesday, 5th March, 2013.