Wednesday, 6th December, 2017

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Wednesday, 6th December, 2017


The House met at 0900 hours


[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]












Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, I wish to inform you that Loyola Productions and the National Assembly of Zambia is producing a television documentary on the role of the Budget Office of the National Assembly.


The documentary will include recorded interviews of selected stakeholders and excerpts of live Parliamentary debates. The recording in the Debating Chamber will take place today, Wednesday, 6th December, 2017, from 09:00 hours.


Thank you.








99. Mukosa (Chinsali) asked the Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry:


  1. how many organisations in Chinsali Parliamentary Constituency had benefited from the Citizens Economic Empowerment Fund from its inception;


  1. if there were no beneficiaries, why; and


  1. what measures were being taken to ensure that more organisations benefitted from the fund.


The Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mrs Mwanakatwe): Mr Speaker, the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) has disbursed eighty-three business loans amounting K1,967,000 to Chinsali Constituency from inception to date.


Mr Speaker, the commission is committed to distributing the empowerment fund equitably among all the ten provinces of this country. In this regard, it has been funding three districts per province per year, and we expect more business organisations to benefit from the fund. The commission will continue to operate in that manner until all the in the country are funded, subject to the availability of financial resources from the Treasury.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Mukosa: Mr Speaker, most entrepreneurs in Chinsali have no assets that they can use as collateral to access loans from the Citizens Economic Empowerment Fund (CEEF). What measures has the Government put in place to help people who do not have collateral to also benefit from the empowerment fund?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Sir, the CEEC has a threshold at which no collateral is required. Further, to help people without collateral to benefit from the fund, we established and operationalised the Immovable Assets Registry at the Patents and Companies Registration Agency (PACRA), which allows immovable property like crops and cattle to be used as collateral.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Chaatila (Moomba): Mr Speaker, what is the percentage of non-performing loans in Chinsali from the amounts that have been disbursed so far?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, I do not have the figure for Chinsali at hand. However, the overall figure is below 40 per cent.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Kamondo (Mufumbwe): Mr Speaker, what measures has the ministry put in place to ensure that the Citizens Economic Empowerment Fund (CEEF) is not politicised? There is the possibility that only members of one political party will benefit from it.


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, that is an important question because I think we need to remove the myth that the CEEF is a political tool.


Sir, we fund anyone who is qualified in all districts and disburse the funds in an equitable manner so that anyone from any political party can benefit, as long as they present a viable project proposal.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Mecha (Chifunabuli): Mr Speaker, so far, how viable have the businesses that have been funded in the area been?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, we monitor the viability of the businesses closely and support them once they have been set up. Overall, I think the businesses are viable enough. However, that is not to say that there may not be some companies that are struggling. No wonder, this ministry emphasises training of applicants so that they can effectively run the businesses for which they are funded.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Nanjuwa (Mumbwa): Mr Speaker, will the ministry consider reducing on the paper work of the application process so that highly-marginalised people can also access the fund?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, we are learning and streamlining the processes in the commission more with every successive year, and we are in the process of reducing the paper work involved when one wants to access a loan from the CEEC.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Jere (Livingstone): Mr Speaker, how many youths and women in Chinsali benefitted from the 2017 allocation?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, I cannot narrow my response to Chinsali. However, overall, the disbursements are split three ways, that is, 40 per cent goes to women, 40 per cent to the youths and 20 per cent to everybody else. That is what we do in every district. So, even the K1,967,000 that was allocated to Chinsali should have been shared on that basis.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Zimba (Chasefu): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister spoke about equality in the distribution of the funds among the ten provinces. Has any sensitisation been done on how the people can access the funds, especially in rural constituencies like Chasefu, so that they are not disadvantaged?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, I did not get the question. Could the hon. Member repeat it.


Mr Speaker: Repeat the question in relation to Chinsali.


Mr Zimba: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister talked about equity in the distribution of the funds among the ten provinces. Have the people in far-flung areas like Chinsali and Chasefu been sensitised on how they can access funding from the CEEC so that they are not disadvantaged?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, yes, we have conducted extensive sensitisation campaigns across the country. However, I need to go and check whether we have reached the real bundus. Suffice it for me to say that the assessments, sensitisation and training are continuous. We try to equip the beneficiaries with entrepreneurial and business skills, and teach them about simple balance sheets and profit and loss accounting. That is the reason there has been good performance in the portfolio.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Mwila (Chimwemwe): Mr Speaker, most project proposals from rural Zambia, including those from Chinsali, are not approved for funding because they are poorly written. What measures has the ministry put in place to address this challenge?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, recently, we secured a K32 million loan from the African Development Bank (AfDB) for disbursement mainly in rural areas. In fact, 92 per cent of our funds go to rural areas. A percentage of the loan will also be used for entrepreneurship and skills training, and the enhancement of market access for produce from rural areas. We will also cater for the last mile, where there is no infrastructure. Therefore, you will see more sensitisation and training of entrepreneurs.


I thank you, Sir.


Ms Tambatamba (Kasempa): Mr Speaker, non-performing loans in Chinsali are just below 40 per cent, that is, over a third. We should learn from the Youth Empowerment Fund (YEF) under the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Child Development, including the Higer Bus Project, which is meant to empower the youths. The other night, I watched a news clip on Muvi Television about that fund, which should worry the ministry. What measures will be put in place to ensure that this programme does not end up performing as poorly as the YEF?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, I said I do not know the figure for the performance of the loans given to the people of Chinsali. I can happily share that information with the House in course of the week. However, in order to ensure good performance of the loans every year, we have completely decentralised the Risk Department. Therefore, in every district, there is a risk officer who follows up the projects and makes sure that they are on course.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Dr Malama (Kanchibiya): Mr Speaker, how does the ministry publicise this service in areas like Chinsali and Kanchibiya, which are hard to reach due to the absence of bridges and feeder roads, and the poor state of communication infrastructure?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, I think Chinsali is not difficult to reach. One can get there by road and move around the district quite well. However, we will have difficulties going into areas where bridges have collapsed. I do not know whether Kanchibiya is really one of those areas. However, I know that my people will get there and ensure that the rural poor also get their fair share of the funds.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Mutale (Chitambo): Mr Speaker, Chinsali, despite being the Provincial Headquarters for Muchinga, has rural constituencies, such as Chitambo. Has the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission been decentralised properly for it to cater for rural districts like Chitambo?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, decentralisation is a continuous process. We started with the major area, that is, the training and enhancement of market access. However, risk management was very important to us. No wonder, we now have a Risk Officer in each district. Further, I think that some districts need certain considerations while others do not. Therefore, we cater to the specific needs of each district. In Mansa, for example, there is a large co-operative of 4,000 cassava out-growers who are doing very well. So, for them, the training would have to be based on co-operative principles.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Ngulube (Kabwe Central): Mr Speaker, the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) is one of the most promising programmes for empowering Zambians. However, there have been instances when it failed to recover loans, and it has sued some defaulters, and grabbed their equipment and closed their businesses, yet there are other defaulters the commission has not pursued. Why are some people seemingly treated as sacred cows?


Mr Speaker: You have moved away from Chinsali.


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, the CEEC disburses funds from the Treasury or loans procured for it by the Ministry of Finance. So, it pursues defaulters all the time. If there is any case in which the commission did not pursue defaulters, then, it had the right level of collateral, which it will go through the process of disposing of it.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Kabanda (Serenje): Mr Speaker, is the training of beneficiaries of the Citizens Economic Empowerment Fund (CEEF) done before they access the funds or afterwards? Is it, maybe, assumed that the beneficiaries would have the business acumen to manage the funds prudently?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member spoke as if he had food in his mouth. So, I did not hear what he said.




Mrs Mwanakatwe: Could he kindly repeat the question.


Mr Speaker: The hon. Minister of Health is not here to ascertain your claim. Nonetheless, I ask him to repeat his question.


Mr Kabanda: Mr Speaker, at what point does the ministry train the beneficiaries of the CEEF? Is it prior to accessing the loans so that they are able to manage the funds prudently or is afterwards, on the assumption that they will use the funds to the best of their abilities?


Mrs Mwanakatwe: Mr Speaker, the training and sensitisation of beneficiaries is continuous. Some people do not need entrepreneurial skills because they are already entrepreneurs. So, we easily get them on board. For those who need training, we provide it prior to their getting any loans. Thereafter, there is continuous training.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.









VOTE 86 – (Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries – K700,516,160).


The Minister of Livestock and Fisheries (Mr Katambo): Madam Chairperson, it is my honour and privilege to address the House on the 2018 estimates of expenditure for the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock.


Madam, Government Gazette Notice No. 183 of 2012 gives the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock the mandate to administer the following:


  1. fisheries policy;


  1. livestock policy;


  1. fisheries research and specialist services;


  1. livestock research and specialist services;


  1. veterinary and fisheries training;


  1. fisheries and livestock extension;


  1. animal health;


  1. animal identification;


  1. dairy industry development;


  1. fisheries management and development;


  1. livestock development; and


  • veterinary and tsetse control services.


Madam, the ministry is also responsible for the following statutory bodies and institutions:


  1. Dairy Industry Development Board;


  1. Livestock Development Trust;


  1. Golden Valley Agricultural Research Trust (GART-Batoka);


  1. Veterinary Council of Zambia (VCZ);


  1. Zambia Institute of Animal Health (ZIAH);


  1. Palabana Dairy Institute;


  1. Kasaka Fisheries Training Institute; and


  1. Animal Disease Control Interdisciplinary Committee, which manages the Animal Disease Control Fund (ADCF).


Madam, the mandate of the ministry is to facilitate the development of a sustainable and viable fisheries and livestock sector in order to ensure food and nutrition security, and enhance the sector’s contribution to the gross domestic product (GDP).


Madam Chairperson, my statement is divided into three major components, namely:


  1. background to the fisheries and livestock sub-sectors;


  1. performance review for 2017; and


  1. outlook for 2018.


Background to the Fisheries and Livestock Sub-Sectors


Madam Chairperson, the fisheries and livestock sector continues to play an important role in food and nutritional security, income generation and employment creation in both rural and urban communities. It is for this reason that the Government, under the able leadership of His Excellency the President of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, has made the livestock and fisheries sector a priority in our economic diversification agenda.


Mr Mweetwa: Question!


Mr Katambo: Madam, in 2016, there was a 16 per cent increase in the cattle population from 4,300,000 to 4,984,909. The increase is attributable to factors like improved animal husbandry practices and disease control, and the implementation of stocking and restocking programmes. The aquaculture sub-sector has also registered a steady growth in the last five years, averaging 22 per cent per year.


Madam Chairperson, despite the positive growth registered in the recent past, the fisheries and livestock sector faces a number of challenges. For instance, the growth of livestock population has continued to be hampered by low capitalisation of the sector, high pest and disease prevalence, inadequate access to improved breeding stock, and erosion of indigenous livestock genetic resources while, in the fisheries sub-sector, the challenges include overfishing and the use of wrong fishing methods, leading to depletion of fish stocks in some of our natural water bodies. Limited market access for small-scale farmers is another challenge affecting the growth of the sub-sector.


2017 Performance Review


Madam Chairperson, in 2017, my ministry implemented some programmes and made the following key achievements:


Livestock and Aquaculture Census


Madam Chairperson, hon. Members will recall that in my ministry’s 2017 budget, there was an allocation of K50 million for conducting a livestock and aquaculture census. The census was aimed at improving the reliability of statistics in the livestock and aquaculture sector, and its results will facilitate effective planning and guide policy formulation. My ministry and the Central Statistical Office (CSO) have completed Phase I of the exercise, which included the design and pre-testing of the census instruments, training of master trainers and procurement of equipment. Phase II, which involves the training of enumerators and data collection, will commence soon.


Livestock Development


Madam, the Government continued to implement livestock stocking and restocking programmes through a multiplication of improved breeding stock of various livestock species in our breeding centres. The sale of cattle, pigs and goats from breeding centres to small-scale farmers, women, youths and the differently-abled is ongoing. During the period under review, the following numbers of animals were sold to famers:


Animals                                                           Number


Dairy cattle                                                           505


Beef cattle                                                             220


Goats                                                                 1,550


Pigs                                                                      814


Madam, the 814 pigs were sold to 301 households by the Keembe Pig Breeding Centre, although the number of pigs available for sale was 1,083. In addition, thirty-seven households benefitted from the sale of improved breeds of cattle, namely Boran and Brahman, at Mukulaikwa Livestock Breeding Centre in Shibuyunji District and Mbesuma State Ranch.


Livestock Disease Control and Prevention


Madam, I am delighted to inform this august House that during the period under review, over 700,000 cattle were vaccinated against Foot and Mouth Disease, Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia (CBPP) and East Coast Fever in high-risk areas. As a result of these control measures, there has been a significant reduction in the prevalence of diseases in disease-prone areas. For example, the CBPP was only reported in Shangombo, Kazungula and Nakonde while Foot and Mouth Disease was only reported in Lukulu District. The incidence of East Coast Fever remained at 3 per cent. Further, the Central Veterinary Research Institute continued to produce and distribute animal vaccines to our farmers. For example, it produced 416,000 doses of haemorrhagic septicaemia, 429,400 doses of black quarter, 88,400 doses of anthrax, 18,475 doses of rabies and 6,230,600 doses of Newcastle Disease.


Madam, to enhance diagnosis and control of livestock diseases, the ministry endeavoured to complete the five regional diagnostic laboratories in Choma, Kasama, Mongu, Ndola and Solwezi. The Solwezi laboratory is complete while works on the other four are at advanced stages. 


Madam Chairperson, twenty-six dip tanks were completed in various parts of the country during the year. In total, 224 have been constructed since 2013 when the programme started. Currently, rehabilitation and construction works on 236 dip tanks are ongoing. My ministry has also recorded progress in the development of other forms of livestock support infrastructure. For example, in 2017, it targeted the construction of eighteen artificial insemination centres, of which ten have been completed and operationalised. The remaining eight are at various stages of development.


Fisheries Development


Madam Chairperson, in the fisheries sub-sector, emphasis continued to be on aquaculture development and promotion of community-based resource management of capture fisheries.


Madam, the major activities undertaken included aquaculture pack development, genetic improvement of fish species for culture, training of fish farmers, fish feed improvement and fingerling production. In addition, research on fish feed fortification with lemon fruit to boost immunity of farmed fish continued at the National Aquaculture Research and Development Centre in Mwekera in Kitwe. Under capture fisheries development, focus was on control and surveillance, fisheries management and stock assessment, and the ministry successfully implemented the mandatory annual fishing ban in order to reverse the decline in fish catches. These measures are already bearing fruit, as evidenced by the increase in fish production from 101,000 metric tonnes in 2015/2016 to 111,000 metric tonnes in 2017.


Revenue Collection


Madam Chairperson, my ministry is one of those that generate revenue for the Treasury. In that regard, from January to September, 2017, it raised K4,858,832 from activities like the sale of animals to small-scale farmers, fishing licences, disease diagnostics, and import and export sanitary permits. The targeted amount was K4,048,811.


Training Institutions


Madam Chairperson, my ministry is in charge of four training institutes, namely Kasaka Fisheries Training Institute in Kafue, Palabana Dairy Training Institute, Sinazongwe Fisheries Training Centre and the ZIAH in Mazabuka. These institutions were established to train frontline personnel and farmers in fisheries and livestock production, and related areas. In order to have an efficient and effective human resource, my ministry continued to monitor and evaluate the performance of the institutions, promote curriculum review and co-ordinate staff training.


2018 Outlook


Madam Chairperson, allow me now to highlight my ministry’s strategic focus in 2018.


Madam, the Government, under the able leadership of His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, ...


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Katambo: ... has continued to recognise fisheries and livestock as one of the key strategic sectors in fostering economic development. To this effect, it will continue to actively promote increased investment in the sector, with emphasis on animal health, livestock development, fisheries and aquaculture development, agribusiness, research, livestock and fisheries infrastructure development and extension services, among other activities.


Budgetary Allocation


Madam, my ministry has been allocated K700,516,160 in the 2018 Budget. This amount excludes the allocations to the ministry’s departments in the provinces, which have been moved to the provincial administrations. Of the K700,515,160 allocation, K50,804,070 will go to personal emoluments while the remaining K649,712,090 will go to operations and the following key programmes:


Programme                                                                                         Amount (K’ Million)


Livestock Production                                                                                        251.2


Animal Health and Disease Control                                                                   309


Capture Fisheries and Aquaculture Development                                                26


Livestock and Veterinary Research                                                                     12.5


Fisheries Research                                                                                             10


Fisheries and Livestock Training Institutes                                                            8 


Livestock Development and Animal Health


Madam Chairperson, under livestock development and animal health, the focus will be on livestock stocking and restocking, livestock production and productivity, provision of extension services, livestock infrastructure development, construction of livestock breeding and service centres and milk collection centres, and goat and sheep marketing. Under veterinary services, the Government will continue with animal disease prevention and control programmes through vaccinations against major diseases across the country. In order to control trypanosomiasis in the Rufunsa-Luano Valley, the ministry intends to spray a 10,000 km2 area against tsetse flies. It will also scale up the production of haemorrhagic septicaemia, black quarter, anthrax, East Coast Fever, rabies and Newcastle vaccines at the Central Veterinary Research Institute in order to make them readily available to the farmers. With regards to disease control infrastructure, works on dip tank construction and rehabilitation will continue, and 236 dip tanks are earmarked for completion in 2018. In addition, the construction of four regional laboratories will be completed by the end of 2018.


Madam, given the rising market for livestock, especially goats and sheep, the Government will facilitate farmers’ access to local and foreign markets for livestock and livestock products. One initiative is the exportation of 1 million goats per annum to the Middle East.


Fisheries Development


Madam Chairperson, the Government will, in 2018, promote cage fish farming on Lakes Mweru, Luapula, Kariba, Tanganyika and Bangweulu, Kafue River at Kasaka and Zambezi River in the Western Province in an effort to improve fish production and productivity, and attain self-sufficiency. Further, the ministry will fully operationalise the aquaculture parks at Rufunsa, Mungwi, Kasempa and Chipepo. It will also enhance fisheries management on the Lukanga Swamps, Lake Itezhi-tezhi and other fisheries countrywide.


Madam Chairperson, my ministry recognises the important role that knowledge, information and technology play in increasing production and productivity of fisheries and livestock. In this regard, my ministry will continue improving the effectiveness of the extension services delivery system, as it is concerned with the high extension worker-farmer ratio, which has put the extension staff under immense pressure. In view of that, it will employ 250 workers to enhance extension services delivery.


Madam Chairperson, I wish to re-emphasise the ministry’s key strategic focus areas in 2018 as follows:


  1. completion of on-going infrastructure projects;


  1. scaling up of the production of vaccines at the Central Veterinary Research Institute to make them readily available to the farmers;


  1. enhancement of animal disease prevention and control programmes across the country;


  1. facilitation of access to both local and foreign markets for livestock products;


  1. strengthening of breeding, livestock service and artificial insemination centres;


  1. building of the capacity for fish fingerling and feed production, including the establishment of feed plants, hatcheries, and freezing and processing facilities;


  1. strengthening of extension services provision;


  1. strengthening of co-management; and


  1. enforcement of fisheries regulation.


Madam Chairperson, in conclusion, I would like to recognise the valuable contributions of our co-operating partners, the private sector, civil society organisations (CSOs) and the farmers to efforts aimed at unlocking Zambia’s full potential in fisheries and livestock production. Further, I appeal to all my hon. Colleagues to support the 2018 budget for the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock.


Madam Chairperson, I thank you and may God bless us all.


Mr Livune: Question!


The Chairperson: Hon. Livune, are you against the invocation of God’s blessings on us?




Mr Miyanda (Mapatizya): Madam Chairperson, thank you for giving me the opportunity to debate this Vote. I also thank the hon. Minister for his policy statement.


Madam, before I go any further in my debate, I want to make it clear that I support the budget for the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock.


Mr Kakubo: On a point of order, Madam.


The Chairperson: Order, Hon. Miyanda!


Please, resume your seat.


Hon. Member for Kapiri Mposhi Constituency, I have said that I will be reluctant to allow points of order. Is the point of order you want to raise imperative?


Mr Kakubo: Madam Chairperson, it is.


The Chairperson: Is it really urgent?


Mr Kakubo: Yes, Madam.


The Chairperson: All right, you can raise it.


Mr Kakubo: Madam Chairperson, my point of order is both urgent and in the national interest.


Madam, the workers at the Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) have been on strike for more than twenty four hours now and the train services from Kapiri Mposhi to Nakonde have been grounded. As I speak, TAZARA workers are at my office to register complaints about the high poverty levels among them and their failure to pay examination fees for their children, among other issues. So, I think it unprocedural that the hon. Ministers of Labour and Social Security, and Transport and Communication, who I assume are aware of this problem, have not brought this issue to the attention of the House.


Madam Chairperson, I seek your serious ruling.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: My ruling is that the hon. Member for Kapiri Mposhi should immediately go to the Legal and Journals Department and file in a question of an urgent nature, and I assure him that his question will be on the order paper within the next forty eight hours.


That is my ruling.


You may continue, Hon. Miyanda.


Mr Miyanda: Madam, before the point of order was raised, I was thanking the hon. Minister for his policy statement.


Madam, this ministry is very important to this country. It is said among both farmers and non-farmers that “no farmer, no food and no future”.


Mr Livune: That is right.


Mr Miyanda: Madam Chairperson, I agree with that saying because the moment we do away with farmers, we may not have food and a good future for the country.


Madam, the livestock industry will be a blank cheque, I think, for the next fifty years. As long as someone has cattle, goats or sheep, he or she is assured of selling them one day, and it is the only cheque that has no tax, so far, which is a good thing. However, we have some serious challenges. When you compare the small-scale and the commercial farmers in the sector, you may think the two are fifty years apart because the commercial farmers, whether black or white, enjoy many privileges in this country. Let me start the comparison with the ban on the movement of livestock, especially cattle, from the Southern and Western provinces to Lusaka, where the market is good.


Madam, it is only the white commercial farmers who have access to the market in Lusaka. A farmer in Kalomo, Choma or Mazabuka will sell his carcass at about K22 per kilogramme while a white or commercial farmer from the same area will sell his at between K26 and K28. However, when the meat is taken to butcheries, it is sold at the same price regardless of who reared the animal.


Madam Chairperson, beef is now a preserve of those who have a decent income because very few people can afford it on a daily basis. For most of our people, the diet comprises eggs and vegetables, yet there are over 3 million animals in this country. Of course, someone might say that the price is determined by supply and demand, and I agree with that. However, my appeal is that the Government lifts the ban on the movement of livestock between the Western and Southern provinces, and Lusaka, where the market for beef is. I think that some big companies in the sector are conniving with some senior Government officials to maintain the ban on the movement of livestock from the two provinces. In the last Parliament, the former Minister of Livestock and Fisheries, Hon. Kazabu, told the House that the prevalence rate of Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia (CBPP), which is the justification for the continued imposition of the ban in the two provinces, had fallen to below 0.1 per cent. We wonder what the prevalence rate is today if it was below 0.1 per cent in 2016.


Madam Chairperson, fifty years after Independence, we are still struggling to build dip tanks, and this is where the commercial farmers have an advantage. The death rate of animals for commercial farmers is almost 0 per cent while for small-scale farmers, the category in which we all fall, it could be over twenty animals per year. Some of the animals die of tick-borne diseases, which could easily be controlled if we all had dip tanks. Over the years, the cumulative loss of animals to diseases is huge for small-scale farmers.


Madam, one challenge we have is that our animals graze on customary land. Therefore, the grazing is communal. We cannot restrict our animals from mingling. For example, we cannot fence off the pastures on which our animals graze because, again, they are on communal land. Even if we could do that, if our animals, which are many, exhausted the grass on our pastures, we would not be allowed to take them anywhere else for grazing. So, the Government needs to encourage farmers to concentrate more on pasture development.


Mr Sing’ombe: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyanda: Currently, if you go to the ministry, you will be given seeds that you will be told you are supposed to plant, but not let your animals graze on the pasture for six months to one year. Thereafter, you can harvest the grass and feed the animals during the dry season. Unfortunately, we do not have the capacity to do that. In this regard, the ministry should work with the Ministry of Gender, which has given tractors to most chiefdoms, to provide balers ...


Mr Sing’ombe: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyanda: … for the tractors so that they can harvest even the natural grass ...


Mr Sing’ombe: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyanda: ... so that we can take it into feed lots and feed our animals.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyanda: Madam Chairperson, artificial insemination remains the best way to propagate animal reproduction, ...


Mr Livune: That is right.


Mr Miyanda: … and it is in this area that commercial farmers have left us far behind. For them, it is possible to decide when their animals fall pregnant, as they can choose to inseminate all of them in one month.


Mr Sing’ombe: Even one week.


Mr Livune: Yes, at once.


Mr Miyanda: Meanwhile, a small-scale farmer like me has to depend on his bull, which might mount only two cows in a month.


Mr Livune: If well-fed.


Mr Miyanda: So, I cannot sell my animals at once because my season will run for six months, meaning the calves will be born six months apart. Meanwhile, a commercial farmer’s will be weaned at the same time because they are of the same age. So, we appeal to the hon. Minister to enhance the provision of artificial insemination services.


Mr Livune: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyanda: Madam Chairperson, I also have concerns about the agreement between Zambia and Saudi Arabia for the supply of about 1 million goats a year. Those of us who come from rural areas where the goats are, such as Mapatizya, Gwembe, Sinazongwe and places in the Western Province, have been told that a dedicated association has been formed, and that is a good thing. However, we wonder who the people behind the association are who will oversee the sale of the goats to Saudi Arabia. We hope that they are small-scale goat owners. Otherwise, the people who formed the association may not be goat farmers, meaning that the actual goat farmers will be third-party suppliers and will not benefit adequately.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyanda: The only way small-scale farmers can benefit throughout this country is for the association to draw its membership from small-scale and commercial farmers, and other stakeholders.


Madam Chairperson, another important issue is that of dams. I know that they are a responsibility of the Ministry of Water Development, Sanitation and Environmental Protection, but they are essential to the rearing of good-looking animals. Just like water is life to human beings, it is to animals, too. Unfortunately, there are still situations in which animals have to be taken to water sources 10 km away during the dry season, meaning they can only be taken every other day because they and the people herding them need to rest. Therefore, the days on which they will be taken to drink water will average fifteen days in a month. In this regard, I urge the hon. Minister to work with the hon. Minister of Water Development, Sanitation and Environmental Protection to ensure that dams are built where there are animals.


Mr Sing’ombe: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyanda: Let us set our priorities straight. I have noted that someone is building eleven dams in Mfuwe, which is a good thing. I have been to Eastern Province and I saw beautiful animals there. However, someone the dams are being built where streams flow all year round.


Mr Livune: Shame!


Mr Miyanda: My appeal is that we look at areas where there is a need to provide water for animals and our people.


Madam Chairperson, the other issue is that most veterinary officers stay in towns and farmers have to call them when animals fall sick. However, a veterinary department cannot be run by remote control. We need them, but they argue that they cannot live among us because there is no appropriate accommodation for them in our areas. They also claim to have challenges in their outreach activities because they often do not have fuel for their motorcycles, and the hon. Minister needs to take care of that challenge. There is also a need to reorient the veterinary officers because, sometimes, when you ask them what the problem with your animal could be, they tell you that they need to carry out tests that can only be done at Balmoral in Lusaka. Meanwhile, your animals are dying. Maybe, we should decentralise the laboratory services if we can. For example, we should have a test kit in Choma, Mongu and other areas where there is livestock. Otherwise, we will continue losing animals unnecessarily.


I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mecha (Chifunabuli): Madam Chairperson, allow me to thank the hon. Minister for issuing a very well-articulated policy statement.


Mr Nanjuwa: Question!


Mr Mecha: Madam, the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries is one of those that have a very clear direction and vision, and strategic areas. Further, its potential to contribute to the gross domestic product (GDP) and wealth creation is enormous.


Mr Ngulube: Hear, hear!


Mr Mecha: It is also the one that can create jobs. However, over the years, it has continued to be underfunded. I listened attentively to the hon. Minister as he identified a number of challenges in his statement. However, if you compare the challenges he mentioned with the money that has been allocated to this ministry, you will see a mismatch. That is how we miss our priorities in Zambia.


Mr Nanjuwa: Hear, hear!


Mr Mecha: We need to be very serious in budgeting because if we are to surmount the many challenges in the ministry, we have to do the right things.


Madam Chairperson, I normally debate in context. Therefore, let me take you to my district, Samfya, which has two constituencies, namely Bangweulu and Chifunabuli. As I speak, there is a fish outlet that sells Tilapia fish, which comes all the way from China, yet Samfya has massive water bodies. Over the last ten years, this country has conducted a lot of feasibility studies on the production of Tilapia and other fish varieties. The studies have been conducted at a huge cost to the country and the research data is there to help the rural areas in participating in the economic development of this country, yet we are importing Tilapia from China and selling it in rural constituencies like mine. The first implication of this situation is that we are missing an opportunity to build up our foreign exchange (forex) reserves ...


Mr Ngulube: Hammer, hammer!


Mr Mecha: … because we are spending forex on importing what can be locally produced. The second implication is that we are exporting many jobs. China is now busy developing technologies for fish production, and you know that many jobs can be created in the many sub-chains of the fisheries value chain. The production of fish feed alone can create many jobs. The Chinese are also developing technology for fingerling production. Unfortunately, that is another opportunity we are missing while they are developing their export market because they now know they have a market in Samfya. We need to seriously review our strategies.


Madam Chairperson, the lifestyles of Zambians are slowly changing and people like me now eat village chickens, not broiler chickens.


Mr Chisopa: Why?


Mr Mecha: Obviously, it is for health reasons.


Mr Nanjuwa: Hear, hear!


Mr Mecha: If you look at the market for both village or traditional chickens and broilers, it has great potential. How can we, then, leverage changing lifestyles in Zambia and develop a good market for the people of Chifunabuli? These are the things about which we need to talk even before we talk about the export market. Where have we gone wrong? In Luapula, the market potential for village chickens is very high and there is a good export market in the neighbourhood. Congolese nationals cross over to buy our village chickens. The local markets like restaurants also make a lot of money. What, though, are we doing for the farmers? The critical issue is that we are not helping farmers to come up to speed with what we want to do as a nation.


Madam, I was perusing some posts to the WhatsApp group for Luapula Patriotic Front (PF) members on which some youths indicated that they have incubators they do not use. Those are the things that can help deliver local economies even though they seem insignificant. We can easily monetise the local economies by fully harnessing small opportunities. So, what is the ministry doing to enhance opportunities for youths’ participation on the livestock value chain? We need to think about that.


Mr Ngulube: Ehe!


Mr Mecha: People can be employed to gather eggs from all the surrounding villages to the incubator and a local hatchery can be set up.


Madam, another challenge we have is that we get stock feed from Lusaka, which escalates costs to levels beyond what a small-scale farmer can afford. So, the small-scale farmers cannot do anything. So, we need to help them to harness the opportunities available to them.


Madam Chairperson, I can go on giving examples of what is happening. Suffice it for me to say that we need to do the right things. The people in rural areas are crying for us to do the right things. So, let us develop the value chains. The hon. Minister will recall that, a month ago, my constituency lost basically all the pigs to African Swine Fever, and we are doing our best to help the people come up with alternative sources of livelihoods. My farmers, who had taken to pig production, lost over 1,000 pigs this year. So, you can feel for my people and sympathise with me on the many challenges I have, as the area Member of Parliament. There are diseases like Newcastle that we can eradicate. The vaccine cold chain is non-existent in the rural communities. So, year in and year out, we lose village chickens because there is no one offering veterinary services in our areas. We need to develop those businesses, and there must be people who will offer the necessary services. The businesses look small but, cumulatively, they can drive the local economies of this country and take us a long way forward.


Madam, the numerous challenges that the ministry faces calls for a reorientation of its capacity building programmes. The veterinary assistants at the local level are not able to deal with the entire value chain because of the lower level of their skills. So, we need to develop their skills further so that they can help the farmers to produce, manage diseases and establish markets. These are essential skills in these modern times.


Madam Chairperson, with those few remarks, I support the budget for the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock.


I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


Mr Ng’ambi (Chifubu): Madam Chairperson, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to debate.


Madam, from the outset, I want to state that the people of Chifubu Constituency support the budget for the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock. At the same time, I want to commend the ministry for doing very well during this year. As pointed out by a previous debater, the ministry has a lot of potential to create jobs and grow the gross domestic production (GDP) of this country. The people of Chifubu expect the resulting benefits to reach their area so that the youths can be employed.


Madam Chairperson, the ministry can turn the economy of this country around very rapidly because Zambia hosts about 40 per cent of the water resources in Southern Africa. No wonder, I sometimes wonder why we invest money in the development of fish ponds when we can actually use the tested and trusted method of keeping fish in our natural water bodies. The hon. Minister must know that there are water bodies all over the country. We, therefore, need to explore the possibility of buying fish from China and restocking our lakes.  I assure the hon. Minister that this idea would pay dividends within six months. 


Madam, goat rearing is a very short-term project that can benefit our people within six months. Like the previous speaker said, the potential benefits of this industry are immense because even the production of feed stock would create job opportunities for our people. However, one of the challenges we seem to face is that of accessing capital. Where can our people get the capital needed to exploit the business potential about which we have been talking?


Madam, the President has gone all over the world to market Zambia as an attractive investment destination because of its peaceful people and good climate. Politically, Zambia is very stable. Further, I am thankful to the President for the construction of the Lusaka/Ndola Dual Carriageway, sourcing of US$240 million for the Lusaka Decongestion Project (LDP) and development of many power generation plants in the country. We all know that the Government had to borrow money to undertake all those activities. Now, we are seeing the benefits. For example, the load-shedding we experienced for many years has been more or less eliminated. I think that, in the next few years, Zambia will start exporting power.


Mr Ngulube: Hear, hear!


Mr Ng’ambi: That being the case, we need to start preparing our people to engage in economic activities that will be made possible by the infrastructure that the Government has been developing. For example, roads like the one leading to Luangwa and Bangweulu have been constructed. In this regard, the hon. Minister of Fisheries and Livestock needs to work very closely with the hon. Ministers of Finance, and Commerce, Trade and Industry.


Madam, I encourage this Government to borrow K1 billion from international financial institutions to buy fish for restocking the water bodies in this country so that we can do away with the need to impose a fishing ban annually because fish will be abundant in the country without its having to invest in the development of fish ponds. Within a very short period, Zambia will start exporting fish.


Madam, we are told that, already, Zambia has the market potential to supply 1 million goats annually to the Middle East. If we exploited that potential, benefits will be realised by the country in a short time. So, I urge the hon. Minister to work very closely with the hon. Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry to see how part of the Citizens Economic Empowerment Fund (CEEF) can be provided to our people as capital. If the ministry provided about 1 million goats to small-scale farmers on a scheme, we can rest assured that the goats would multiply in a year and that would add value to the lives of our people.


Madam Chairperson, on the Copperbelt, and in Chifubu Constituency in particular, people have gone into chicken rearing and need support, particularly in the form of extension services. Further, markets should be developed for them to sell their chickens. We all know that most small-scale farmers cannot sell their produce to chain stores like Shoprite and Pick ’n Pay. So, we should come up with a deliberate policy to group them together and develop the sector.


Madam, what has been done, so far, can only be done by a caring Government. It is, therefore, important that we develop the potential of the ministry to create job opportunities for our unemployed young people. This sector, in my view, is a gold mine.


Madam Chairperson, I thank you.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyutu (Kalabo Central): Madam Chairperson, I would like to add a word to the debate on the budget for the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock.


Madam Chairperson, like other hon. Members have said, this ministry is very important, as the sector is a source of livelihood for many people in my area. However, our history in the sector is better than the present. The Government is aware that many cattle owners in the Western Province are peasant or small-scale farmers who live in villages and small communities and are used to being assisted by the Government through the provision of all drugs. There were no categories of diseases that were the responsibility of the farmer to treat and others that were for the Government to treat. However, the governance of this country changed and the people in the villages have been caught up in that change, but they are still waiting to be helped by the Government. The Government is fighting diseases like Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia (CBPP) and anthrax. However, there are other diseases the ministry is not treating and has left for the farmers to fight, yet most of the diseases are treated by drugs that are not available in Kalabo, including the vaccines. Similarly, the villagers in Mapatizya are not able to source the vaccines, which must be refrigerated at 0°C. Which peasant farmer can afford such facilities? So, the health of animals is compromised because there are no vaccines. The Government is only ready to intervene when animals contract diseases like anthrax and CBPP. However, who says that the animals will necessarily suffer from those diseases specifically? So, much as the Government wants the farmers to be independent, the fact is they are not. A farmer in Ng’uma has to walk 90 km to reach Kalabo Boma and another 80 km to get to Mongu, making a total of about 170 km. 


Madam Chairperson, I am sure the hon. Minister knows that that there is not much crop production in the Western Province. Therefore, we depend on cattle. Yes, there are other livestock, but our main concern is with cattle. However, some time back, there was an outbreak of the CBPP, which reduced the stock numbers in the province. Currently, the prevalence of the disease is below 1 per cent, but we want it to be eradicated. Further, there once was an outbreak of anthrax and it was very difficult for the camp officers in Ng’uma to communicate with the authorities. So, a number of animals died of the disease. Therefore, the Government should regularly vaccinate the animals. It should not go to sleep because we lose stocks of cattle when it does so, and the loss of one herd of cattle is too much.


Madam Chairperson, there is one simple exercise we do not understand well. Almost all the good things and services are in Lusaka. Therefore, people migrate here. However, those who own cattle cannot migrate to Lusaka. The branding of animals …


Mr Sing’ombe: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyutu: … is very simple and the levy involved is K2. Our concern is not with the amount of the levy, but with where it is paid. People from Kaputa, Dundumwezi and Solwezi have to travel to Lusaka to pay K2.


Mr Sing’ombe: Just to come and pay a K2? No!


Mr Miyutu: Surely, fifty-three years after our Independence, we still think like this?


Mr Livune: Shemuna bane!


Mr Sing’ombe: Shame!




Mr Mutale: Question!


Mr Miyutu: It is as if the brand mark is a drug, yet it is not. For someone to put a mark on his animals, he has to spend hundreds of kwacha to go and pay K2.


Mr Sing’ombe: Hear, hear!


Mr Mutale: Question!


Mr Miyutu:  I think it is high time we made a drastic change. Someone, is able to pay for road tax …

Mr Sing’ombe: Decentralise it!


Mr Miyutu: … at any post office in Zambia. The Government might be interested in the money paid by the car owners, but we are also interested in the wellbeing of our animals.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Miyutu: Therefore, the Government should look after those who keep animals the same way it takes care of those who own cars by decentralising the issuance of brand marks.


Mr Sing’ombe: Kansimbi chabe so?


Mr Miyutu: Madam Chairperson, t is not a heavy or big thing and I do not think it needs a lot of input for the Government to claim that there is a high cost associated with decentralising its issuance.


Madam Chairperson, the hon. Minister said that the construction of regional laboratories will be completed in 2018.


Mr Sing’ombe: Continue on the brand mark.


Mr Miyutu: When did the construction start? We have been hearing about it for three years now. In the 2016 policy statement, the hon. Minister said that the projects would be completed in 2017. However, the time frame has been extended to 2018. We want the laboratories to be completed because we cannot continue sending specimens for laboratory tests to Lusaka and waiting for results because that takes a lot of time. These things that we do not consider bring about poverty. We used to own many animals and would sell some of them to raise money to take our children to school. Therefore, if the Government delays in taking services to the people, they will fail to do what we expect them to do. I am sure you know how much it costs to take children to school and that the little the Government does is supplemented by the people through resources realized from the sale of livestock. So, we want the laboratories to be completed, at least, in 2018 as has been promised.


Madam Chairperson, rural areas should be prioritised in the provision of extension services because some commercial farmers near towns like Lusaka are able to engage private veterinary officers while the people in the villages really depend on Government services. However, there is a shortfall of veterinary camp officers who assist rural farmers. For example, about four camps in Kalabo have no officers and I am sure this is the situation in most camps in this country. So, the ministry should target the rural parts of the country when it deploys the 250 extension officers that it intends to deploy because that is where their services and knowledge are most needed. Many people in the villages still follow traditional agricultural practices and need to be sensitized on modern practices. For example, during the recent outbreak of anthrax in the rural areas, people hid the carcasses of their dead animals because they did not want to burn or bury them, which they considered a loss. However, when the farmers have knowledge, the number of livestock will increase and rural livelihoods will improve. The rural farmers will eventually stop running away from knowledge.


Madam Chairperson, for Kalabo, the biggest problem is liver flu. If one slaughtered ten animals, seven of them would have liver flu. So, we are not able to sell the livers which, I am sure everyone here knows, are very expensive.


Madam Chairperson, in conclusion, I would like to echo Hon. Miyanda’s sentiments on the need to end the big cartels that have perpetuated poverty in the villages. Some rich people are conniving with politicians or civil servants to block people in rural areas from bringing their animals to Lusaka for sale.


Mr Sing’ombe: Why?


Mr Miyutu: In Lusaka, beef costs twice what it costs in Kalabo. So, the ministry needs to look into that issue. As it has already been stated, the prevalence of CBPP and anthrax in the areas in question is almost zero. So, what does the ministry still want to happen for it to lift the ban on the movement of cattle from the Western and Southern provinces to Lusaka? The people should be allowed to sell their animals in Lusaka so that they can make more money.


Madam Chairperson, with those few words, I thank you.


Prof. Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda): Madam Chairperson, the hon. Minister heads a very important ministry because it is responsible for what is called ‘white gold’ or milk, which can transform our economy tremendously. I think the benchmark, for us, should be other countries in the region. Currently, Zambia has about 4.9 million cattle while Namibia, which has 2.1 million people, has 2.6 million cattle. Do we see the difference? Botswana has 2 million people and 3 million cattle, Kenya has 18 million cattle while South Africa has 14 million, and we should benchmark ourselves against those countries. Our 4.9 million cattle are far fewer than what we ought to have. So, we need to do a lot more in livestock development in our country.


Madam Chairperson, Zambia has a huge advantage over other countries on the African continent in the livestock sector. The entire group of Francophone countries in West Africa are in the lower altitude of around 60 m above sea level. So, they cannot keep cattle because the environment there cannot sustain cattle production. The cattle simply die when taken there. so, those countries import most of their milk from France in powdered form. The milk is, then, reconstituted into liquid form. So, that is a huge market.


Madam Chairperson, Zambia’s altitude is over 1,000 m above sea level while Lusaka is over 1,200 m above sea level. Clearly, we have huge advantage in livestock development. Actually, we can produce white gold for the entire African continent. Currently, South Africa imports part of its milk from Argentina and Brazil. That would be our market if we paid more attention to the development of the livestock sector, particularly our dairy industry.


Madam, animals like cattle are just like human beings.


Mr Ngulube: Question!


Prof. Lungwangwa: Yes!


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Prof. Lungwangwa: In terms of their care, for instance, they, too, need water. So, we must ensure that water is readily accessible to them.


Mr Siwale: Yes, like in Luapula.


Prof. Lungwangwa: Animals also need medication to cure or prevent diseases. So, just like we try to make clinics and hospitals available and easily accessible to human beings, we should make veterinary services readily available to our livestock sector.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Livune: Beve baona fulu ni mbeba!




Prof. Lungwangwa: We make research data and laboratories easily accessible to the farmer.


Mr Livune: That is right!


Prof. Lungwangwa: That is what our livestock sector needs.


Madam, we should train as many veterinary officers as possible, just like we should train as many medical doctors and nurses as possible. We should have the same attitude towards our livestock that we have to our citizens. Once we do that, there is no doubt that our livestock population will surpass the human population. Our cattle population should surpass 15 million. Relative to the human population, that is what Botswana and Namibia have achieved.


The Chairperson: Order!


Business was suspended from 1040 hours until 1100 hours.





Prof. Lungwangwa: Madam, before business was suspended, I was putting across the message that we must think big.


Madam, let us challenge ourselves to more than triple our cattle population in the shortest possible time by providing the various services that can improve the health and wellbeing of our animals so that the issues of unemployment, youth problems and poverty can be eradicated in the shortest possible time. That can be done. We have a conducive environment. We only need the hon. Minister of Finance to apply his mind to this sector and see how best we can develop it.


Mr Sing’ombe: Hear, hear!


Prof. Lungwangwa: Ethiopia now boasts of having 90 million cattle, goats and sheep ...


Mr Sing’ombe: Can you imagine?


Prof. Lungwangwa: ... despite having a harsh environment for animal husbandry. What about us in this God-given paradise on earth? Saudi Arabia keeps animals in air-conditioned spaces because of its very hot environment. So, we can do much more. The African population will reach 2.5 billion by 2050, just thirty-three years from now. What is our country doing to reposition itself to take advantage of the growing younger population on the continent? We must start thinking big as quickly as possible.


Madam, Parmalat was started by three or four members of the same family in an area called Parma in Italy. The word ‘latté’ means milk. Now, the company is a multinational corporation (MNC). Why can we not have ‘Bweengwalat’?


Mr Sing’ombe: Hear, hear!


Prof. Lungwangwa: It is possible, and that is the kind of thinking we should have. We should start thinking outside the box.


Madam Chairperson, some of our fishing methods, such as the kombakomba method, have destroyed our fisheries and depleted our fish stocks. Kombakomba, means scouring even the tiniest living organisms from the water, including the tadpoles. Now, the Mongu fish all of us used to enjoy, for example, is no longer available. These are the issues we must address for the good of our country. Beyond our political parties, we have a country to manage for the good of all of us. So, let us challenge ourselves to address these issues.


Madam Chairperson, Zimbabwe now has more than 140,000 goat farmers. How many do we have? Why do we have so few? Can we not do it, when the environmental factors in our country are fairer than they are in Zimbabwe? For example, we have more and grazing land. So, we can definitely do better, and this ministry holds the key to the prosperity of our nation. So, we should challenge ourselves to reorient our strategic focus towards elevating the livestock sector.


Madam Chairperson, what is the ministry doing to assist many of our people who are struggling to rear village chickens so that we boost our village chicken industry? The challenge is for it to work with the struggling farmers to boost the livestock and fisheries sector. Fish restocking should not be a strictly demand-driven activity like the hon. Minister told us yesterday. Instead, it must also be supply-driven because we have a number of water bodies that the ministry should restock. The ministry should also teach communities to appreciate the economic benefits of restocking and using the fish resources sustainably. They should also be shown the economic benefits of the restocking processes. Therefore, the Government should be the stimulus and catalyst of the fish restocking process. Our fish stocks are too low, and it is a shame that this country should import Tilapia fish from China, of all places, when we have abundant water resources and we can engage in fish farming on a large scale.


Madam Chairperson, I think that we must think outside the box. We can transform our lives within a very short time if we put our minds to it. We can have cattle belts the same way we have the Copperbelt.


Madam Chairperson, I thank you.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Katambo: Madam Chairperson, let me thank all the hon. Members who have debated this Vote for their comments and contributions. Indeed, it is important for us to do our work.


Madam, let me react to a few issues raised.


Madam Chairperson, Hon. Miyanda debated the ban on the movement of livestock from the Western and Southern provinces. The ministry is encouraging the development of the livestock sector so that it can be run as a business. The lifting of the ban is still under discussion. We are discussing with all the stakeholders how best we can manage the diseases that necessitated the bans in the bans in the first place.


Madam Chairperson, I must clarify that there is no ban, as such, on the movement of livestock from the two regions. What we have in place are movement regulations and restrictions after our veterinary officers screened for various livestock diseases like foot and mouth, East Coast Fever and CBPP. We are trying our level best to manage the diseases so that there can be free movement of livestock from the two provinces.


Madam Chairperson, the ministry has also developed a live cattle grading booklet that will be distributed to allow farmers to get favourable prices for their beef. The grading will be done in the areas of origin and the farmers, ministry officials and buyers will be trained in grading animals based on prevailing market prices, and age and conditions of respective animals.


Madam Chairperson, the hon. Member also talked about the task force on the exportation of goats to the Saudi market. I would like to state that the Secretary to the Cabinet chairs the task force and it comprises representatives from the Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU), small-scale farmers, livestock traders and the ministry.


Madam, Hon. Miyanda also raised an issue with the artificial insemination satellite centres we are establishing countrywide, which will give farmers access to artificial insemination services. All our extension officers will be trained to provide this service. The Government is in the process of procuring a liquid nitrogen plant, which will be based in Mazabuka. Once the supplier has been identified, we will do as recommended.


Madam, as I indicated in my policy statement, dip tanks are being constructed and rehabilitated. Since they are community-owned, it is the communities that identify the sites where they should be built. The President directed that we complete all the old dip tanks, many of which did not have water points. So, it is important that we put water points in all our various dip tanks countrywide.


Madam Chairperson, I thank Hon. Mecha for his contribution. Indeed, it is sad that we have a fish deficit and have to import fish from China. However, we have identified Lake Bangweulu and other lakes in Luapula Province where we will place about forty demonstration cages under the Fisheries Aquaculture Development Fund. The youths and women will be specifically targeted to benefit from this project.


Madam, Hon. Mecha also raised an issue on market access. Indeed, it is important to train the farmers in our constituencies in village chicken production. There are on-going projects in that regard, an example of which is the Nkunku Project. We are encouraging village chicken production through co-operatives and youth groups.


Madam Chairperson, on the outbreak of the African Swine Fever, I would like to inform the House that we have restricted the movement of pigs within the affected areas. We have also banned trade in pigs and are sensitising our farmers on the outbreak. About K566,000 was sent to Samfya for the officers to use in the sensitisation programmes. It is, indeed, important that we curb various livestock diseases.


Madam Chairperson, under the Zambia Aquaculture Enterprise Development Project, there are sensitisation programmes being implemented in Luapula and Bangweulu, which urge farmers, womenfolk and youths to take up farming as a business. We are also encouraging the private sector to be involved in fish feed production in our aqua parks. Of course, fingerling production is also being encouraged, as it promotes fish production.


Madam Chairperson, Hon. Ng’ambi asked us to look for funds from the ministries of Finance, and Commerce, Trade and Industry so that we can buy as many kilogrammes of fingerlings as possible and, one day, become exporters of fish and fish products. In that regard, we have already identified areas like Bangweulu, Samfya, Chipepo, Kasempa, Mungwi and Rufunsa where we will promote aquaculture. We estimate the number of fish farmers there to be over 20,000. The project targets 12,000 fish farmers and entrepreneurs in the high potential targeted zones through the Aquaculture Development Fund, which will be provided by the African Development Bank (AfDB). Fifty per cent of the beneficiaries will be women and youths. However, about 50,000 entrepreneurs on the aquaculture value chain are likely to indirectly benefit from the project.


Madam Chairperson, Hon. Miyutu talked about branding. The reason the issuance of brand marks was centralised was to avoid duplication of brands among farmers. I must mention that the cost of the brand mark will now be about K100 and I assure you that the issuance of animal brands will be decentralised to the districts and constituencies using electronic branding (e-branding) tags, which have just been introduced under the Smart Zambia Initiative.


Hon. Opposition Member: Now you are talking.


Mr Katambo: Thank you, very much.


Madam Chairperson, on the management of diseases, the farmers contribute K25 while the Government provides a subsidy of K75 towards the purchase of anthrax drugs. I visited the areas that the hon. Member has mentioned to witness the vaccination exercise. The diseases involved are classified as being of national economic importance, and the Government is putting all its resources into curbing them. In that regard, we have targeted about 39,000 cattle. Just a few days ago, we sent about 40,000 vaccines to our veterinary officers for them to vaccinate animals against anthrax. Allow me to state that anthrax is a zoonotic disease. Therefore, hon. Members of Parliament, including Mr Miyutu, should sensitise small-scale farmers against consuming anthrax-contaminated meat. The hon. Minister of Health, Dr Chilufya, and I featured on radio programmes and distributed leaflets to sensitise the people to avoid eating contaminated beef when we visited the area. Further, it is important that our farmers regularly deworm livestock so that we can curb liver fluke. I also assure Hon. Miyutu that, with the support of the hon. Minister of Finance, I will see to it that we complete the laboratory in Mongu in 2018. Currently, it is almost 80 per cent complete.


Madam Chairperson, my beloved father, Hon. Prof. Lungwangwa, also raised some issues. I must commend him for being very supportive, especially on issues of recruitments and animal welfare. I lobby for support from hon. Members on the enforcement of fishing regulations so that the Kombakomba, which is wiping out almost all the species of fish is got rid of. Hon. Members of Parliament also need to encourage their constituents to avoid the use of mosquito nets, poisonous substances and other bad fishing methods, and to abide by the fishing ban so that they do not deplete the fish stocks in our water bodies.


Madam Chairperson, in conclusion, I urge my hon. Colleagues to support the budget for the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock.


I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


The Chairperson: Hon. Members, before we go to individual items, you may have noticed that Votes 86/16 to 86/37 have no allocations. Last week, when we were debating Vote 89, I urged Her Honour the Vice-President to ensure that the change in the financing of Provincial Agricultural Co-ordinating Offices (PACOs) and District Agricultural Co-ordinating Offices (DACOs) be explained, hopefully this week. I now direct that the same issue be explained with regard to the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries. I think that the matter is now clear to Her Honour the Vice-President. She needs to come to the House and explain what has led to the shifting of the Budget lines so that hon. Members of the House and the general public can understand how the allocation of resources will be done henceforth.


Vote 86/01, 02 and 03 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.


VOTE 86/06 – (Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock Veterinary Services Department – K58,603,420).


Mr Chaatila (Moomba): Madam Chairperson, I seek clarification on page 993, Programme 1012, Activity 034 – Construction and Rehabilitation of Dip Tank – K4,000,000. Why has the allocation been reduced from K30,000,000 in 2017, which was a good amount, to only K4,000,000 when we still need many dip tanks in rural areas?


Mr Katambo: Madam Chairperson, Programme 1012, Activity 034 – Construction and Rehabilitation of Dip Tank – K4,000,000 is meant to provide appropriate office and fisheries infrastructure for the effective implementation of the department’s programmes. Activities 089 and 155 have been introduced to ensure buildings, carports and fencing are rehabilitated or constructed at the Department of Fisheries Headquarters.


The Chairperson: Hon. Minister, the question is on the reasons for the reduction in the allocation from K30,000,000 to K4,000,000. If the activity has been funded under another Vote, what is that Vote?


Mr Katambo: Madam Chairperson, in Activity 089 − Construction and Rehabilitation of Dip Tanks, the allocation has been reduced because ...


Sorry, Madam Chairperson. Just a minute. Activity 089 − Construction and Rehabilitation of ..


The Chairperson: Order, hon. Minister!


We are on Page 993, Programme 1012 – Infrastructure Development, Activity 034 – Construction and Rehabilitation of Dip Tanks – K4,000,000. The question is: Why has the allocation been reduced from K30,000,000 in 2017 to K4,000,000 in 2018?


Mr Katambo: Madam Chairperson, the allocation to Programme 1012, Activity 034 – Construction and Rehabilitation of Dip Tank – K4,000,000 has been reduced to due to the non-contracting of new works.


I thank you, Madam.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: Hon. Minister, the allocation has been reduced to non-contracting of …


Mr Katambo: Madam Chairperson, we have not contracted new works.


The Chairperson: Oh, “New works”?


Mr Katambo: Yes, Madam Chairperson.


Mr Sing’ombe (Dundumwezi): Madam Chairperson, what has necessitated the increase in the allocation to Programme 1093, Activity 041 – Dip Wash Analysis – K534,000?


Mr Katambo: Madam Chairperson, …


My eyes are failing me.


Madam, on page 991, Programme 1093, Activity 041 – Dip Wash Analysis – K534,000 is meant to facilitate inspections of community dip tanks that have been rehabilitated or constructed in the provinces and the conduct of dip wash analysis. The allocation has reduced due to …


The Chairperson: Order, hon. Minister!


The allocation has been increased.


Mr Katambo: Madam, the allocation has increased due to the intensification of inspections and dip wash chemical analysis.


I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


Mr Nanjuwa (Mumbwa): Madam Chairperson, I seek clarification on page 993, Programme 1201, Activity 002 – Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) Control and Vaccine Procurement – K2,703,670. Is the increase from K164,109 in 2017 to the proposed amount a result increase in the price of vaccines or is the Government increasing the coverage area for the activity?


Mr Katambo: Madam Chairperson, the increase in the allocation to Programme 1201, Activity 002 – Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) Control and Vaccine Procurement – K2,703,670 is meant to facilitate the procurement of vaccines, which used to be catered for under the Livestock Development and Animal Health Project. The project will come to an end in 2018.


Thank you, Madam Chairperson.


Vote 86/06 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.


Votes 86/07, 86/08, 86/14, 86/15, 86/34 and 86/38 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.


VOTE 64 – (Ministry of Works and Supply – K104,076,670).


The Minister of Works and Supply (Mr Nkhuwa): Madam Chairperson, I thank you for according me this opportunity to present the 2018 Budget policy statement for my ministry to this august House.


Madam Chairperson, according to Gazette Notice Number 836 of 18th November, 2016, the portfolio functions of the Ministry of Works and Supply include the following:


  1. control of Government transport;


  1. evaluation of Government property;


  1. Government fleet management;


  1. Government housing policy;


  1. Government printing and gazetting;


  1. insurance of Government property;


  1. office accommodation and maintenance services;


  1. preventive maintenance policy; and


  1. state functions.


Madam Chairperson, as hon. Members of the august House may recall, in 2017, Parliament appropriated to the Ministry of Works and Supply K69,376,223 and a Supplementary Budget of K41,950,000, bringing the total to K111,326,223.


Madam Chairperson, some of the achievements recorded in 2017 by the ministry include the following:


  1. preparation of the Public Building Maintenance Policy, which will guide the maintenance of Government buildings;


  1. preparation of the Government Fleet Management Policy, which will guide the acquisition, utilisation, maintenance and disposal of Government vehicles, plant and equipment;


  1. development of the Public Building Asset Register;


  1. development of a databases a Government motor vehicles and office equipment;


  1. rehabilitation of very very important persons (VVIPs), very important persons (VIP) and guest houses;


  1. provision of pontoon services through the Engineering Services Corporation (ESCO);


  1. commencement of the preparation of the ministry’s Strategic Plan for 2017-2021, whose objective is to facilitate priority-setting, focusing of resources and strengthening of operations for the strategic direction of the ministry;


  1. preparation of ten valuation rolls for councils, which will help the local authorities to improve their revenue base through the application of appropriate ground rates and other property taxes;


  1. standardisation of specifications for use in the procurement of office equipment and consumables;


  1. strengthening of revenue generation programmes; and


  1. continued undertaking of routine and administrative activities.


Madam Chairperson, in 2018, the ministry proposes to spend K104,076,680, of which K54,465,811 will go to salaries and other personnel-related emoluments while K49,610,869 will facilitate the implementation of priority programmes of the  ministry. The overall allocation represents a 6.5 per cent reduction when compared with the 2017 allocation.


Madam, the priority programmes for 2018 will include the following:


  1. establishment of a Public Buildings Asset Register;


  1. maintenance, rehabilitation and redevelopment of public buildings;


  1. improvement of horticultural services;


  1. modernisation of Government printing and gazetting services;


  1. strengthening of Government fleet management;


  1. provision of Government valuation services and property management;


  1. enhancement of the provision of office equipment and maintenance services; and


  1. enhancement of the provision of pontoon services through ESCO.


Madam Chairperson, the Government of the Republic of Zambia has, over the years, increased the stock of public buildings across the country. My ministry, as the custodian of these assets, has, therefore, embarked on the development of a comprehensive Public Buildings Asset Register in order to establish the number of assets the Government owns. The ministry has commenced the physical identification, assessment and valuation of all Government buildings across the country and in missions abroad. Once the register has been completed, the Government will be in a position to establish the number, physical condition, location and true value of each individual building. The implementation of this programme will also enable the Government to acquire title deeds for all its properties and ensure them.


Madam Chairperson, the implementation of the Building Maintenance Policy will culminate into the completion of the Maintenance and Rehabilitation Master Plan by December, 2017. The master plan, which is an operational plan for the 2018-2021 period, will provide the framework for a co-ordinated approach to the maintenance and rehabilitation of public buildings. Its objective is to ensure that the maintenance of public buildings is prioritised, well-co-ordinated, regular and cost-effective. The plan is being developed in consultation with other ministries, the provinces and spending agencies within the framework of the Seventh National Development Plan (7NDP). In this regard, I am happy to inform the House that this initiative is receiving adequate support and that a number of institutions have already submitted to my ministry the buildings to be prioritised for maintenance and rehabilitation. However, the plan’s successful implementation will depend not only on the availability of resources, but also on the support of the three arms of the Government.


Madam Chairperson, the maintenance of public buildings has not been systematic due to inadequate Budgetary support for the programmes. The evidence of this is there for all of us to see, as most public buildings are in deplorable conditions. I must hasten to state that even the 2018 allocation to the programmes are far below what is required to maintain and rehabilitate the prioritised public buildings, which include VVIP, VIP and guest houses. I, therefore, propose that we consider the possibility of providing additional resources for this programme under the Infrastructure Development Fund that will be established in 2018.


Madam Chairperson, my ministry remains the sole custodian of all Government moveable and immovable assets. As such, it is charged with the important responsibility of ensuring that Government property is maintained in a good condition. I, therefore, propose that all funds in the various line ministries meant for major maintenance and rehabilitation of public buildings be transferred to Vote 21 to ensure a collaborated and concerted effort among all ministries, provinces and spending agencies for the effective maintenance and rehabilitation of dilapidated public buildings.


Madam Chairperson, my ministry is also responsible for the management of the Horticultural Unit, which tends plants; maintains lawns; provides flowers; and controls vegetation, insects and pests in order to maintain clean and safe surroundings for public buildings. The unit also provides decorations during State functions.


Madam Chairperson, in order to improve its performance, the ministry intends to commercialise the operations of the Horticultural Unit by mechanising production through the purchase of equipment like tractors, mowers, ploughs, trailers, green houses and a modern irrigation system. Security will also be improved by the erection of a perimeter fence around the unit’s premises. The ministry will also review the organisational structure of the unit, including the Provincial Horticulture Offices, in collaboration with the Management Development Division at Cabinet Office in order to address staff shortages.


Madam Chairperson, the Horticultural Unit has huge potential to generate revenue for Treasury. Once its services are improved, it is envisaged that all Government ministries, provinces and other spending agencies will procure horticultural and landscaping services from the Ministry of Works and Supply.


Madam Chairperson, the Government Printing Department will continue to facilitate the printing and production of Government Gazettes, Bills, Acts of Parliament, Statutory Instruments (SIs), legislative documents and other State publications. However, as we all know, the department has not been operating at the optimal level due to various reasons that include inadequate funding for procurement of equipment and other necessary inputs. This august House will recall that, on 22nd March, 2017, His Excellency President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, toured the department and directed that it be modernised to improve its efficiency and enhance its service delivery. To this end, the ministry is developing a business plan for the department, whose objective is to evaluate the current performance of the department and propose methods for improving and modernising operations, including a sustainable financing model. The plan will be completed in December, 2017, and it is expected to reposition the department to provide good quality printing services to both the public and private sectors at competitive prices.


Madam Chairperson, due to the absence of a comprehensive fleet management policy to guide the utilisation of transport for ministries, provinces and spending agencies, the Government has, for a long time, been having challenges in effectively and efficiently managing its transport fleet, resulting in high expenditure on fuel, maintenance and repairs. In recognition of the importance of a more systematic and comprehensive approach to transport fleet management, the ministry is developing a fleet management policy that will soon be taken to the Cabinet for consideration. The policy will allow the ministry to enhance the real-time monitoring of the acquisition, utilisation, maintenance and disposal of Government vehicles, plant and equipment through the implementation of an electronic fleet management system across all ministries, provinces and spending agencies. This will result in a reduction in Government expenditure on transport, but entails additional responsibilities for the Government Transport Control Unit. Further, the ministry is developing a database for all Government and project vehicles to ensure accountability and monitor their utilisation.


Madam Chairperson, as earlier stated, the Government has continued to invest in the construction and acquisition of buildings across the country. In this regard, the ministry will continue with the valuation of public buildings in order to ascertain the net value of public assets. It is estimated that 100 buildings will be valued in 2018. The valuation will also facilitate the titling, insurance and determination of rental charges where applicable. The Valuation Department of the ministry will also continue to assist the councils in the valuation of property in their jurisdictions. In this regard, it will prepare valuation rolls for ten councils in 2018. This exercise will help the local authorities to develop and update valuation rolls and improve their revenue base through the application of appropriate ground rates and other property taxes.


Madam Chairperson, in order to strengthen the management of public buildings, the ministry will invest resources in the general management of public buildings and develop mechanisms for collecting rent on leased public property. Further, to provide adequate office accommodation for various ministries, the ministry is actively considering the redevelopment of some public properties using the public-private partnership (PPP) model.


Madam Chairperson, the Government invests a lot of resources in the procurement of office equipment every year. In order to ensure accountability in its usage, the ministry will, in 2018, complete and update the database on all office equipment across Government ministries and departments, including Government project equipment. Following the development of the standards for the procurement of office equipment and consumables, the ministry intends to enforce the regulations across all ministries, provinces and spending agencies in 2018 to ensure the optimal utilisation of Government resources. In addition, the ministry will strengthen the operations of the provincial offices for office equipment and maintenance services in order to effectively support the performance of Government offices in the districts.


Madam Chairperson, ESCO is charged with the responsibility of operating pontoons at various river crossing points across the country. In 2018, the ministry will enhance its monitoring and supervision of the corporation to ensure effective service delivery.  In this regard, the ministry will transition the corporation from being a grant-aided institution into being a department. Further, it will ensure that resources, including movable and immovable assets, are accounted for in the transitioning process.


Madam Chairperson, in conclusion, I wish to state that I look forward to the support of all ministries, provinces and spending agencies to the ministry in the execution of its mandate. The support of hon. Members of Parliament will also be important to the successful implementation of the proposed programmes. It is, therefore, my sincere hope that this august House will support the 2018 estimates of expenditure for the ministry.


I thank you, Madam.


Mr Machila (Magoye): Madam Chairperson, I have a few observations to make.


Madam, I listened attentively to the hon. Minister’s policy statement. However, I was at pains to reconcile the arguments because I realised that most activities are spread across other line ministries. In that vein, I reluctantly support the Vote because K104 million should have been realigned to the other ministries, such as the ministries of Agriculture, General Education, and Local Government and Housing, and the Constituency Development Fund (CDF), which could have been an equaliser in the …


Mr Mutale: Question!


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Machila: … development of infrastructure.


Madam Chairperson, those who are familiar with the history of the ministry will remember that it was originally involved in the maintenance and construction of infrastructure, including the maintenance of township and regional roads, and had maintenance equipment, such as graders and tractors, and a workforce for maintaining Government buildings. However, that function has been realigned with the Ministry of Housing and Infrastructure Development.


Madam, the ministry’s maintenance of public infrastructure has been so inadequate that most of the infrastructure under its charge has collapsed. For example, the houses for agricultural extension officers in rural areas have cracks and have been abandoned. The officers now reside in urban centres, which makes their operations in rural areas very difficult. The veterinary service camps have equally been abandoned.


Madam, the provision of infrastructure for all the ministries is now a mandate of the Ministry of Housing and Infrastructure Development. So, which housing will the Ministry of Works and Supply dealing with? We have also heard that the ministry will manage the Government fleet of vehicles. However, Government vehicles are distributed to various ministries. So, in my view, the functions of this ministry should have been placed under other ministries as departments. For instance, a department under the Ministry of General Education can be responsible for taking stock of and maintaining all public buildings in that ministry. We do not need a ministry that performs functions that are already being performed by other ministries because that is a duplication of responsibilities. Instead, we should invest resources where they are most needed. For lack of a better suggestion, and in the interest of morality, I would suggest that this ministry be scrapped off because...


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Dr Malama: Question!


Mr Machila: … its functions can be executed by other ministries. As I already pointed out, there are fully-fledged ministries that manage public infrastructure and transportation, for example. So, the Government should consider turning the ministry into a department of another ministry because having it as a full ministry is a waste of resources.


Madam Chairperson, I will not belabour this point because I think that my point is very clear. Suffice it for me to say that if you go to the Ministry of General Education and raised the issue of old and dilapidated schools in Magoye, you will be told that they are a responsibility of the Ministry of Housing and Infrastructure Development. Now, we are being told that the Ministry of Works and Supply also deals with infrastructure. Let us be serious.


With those few remakes, I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Dr Chibanda (Mufulira): Madam Chairperson, thank you for according the people of Mufulira the opportunity to support the budget for the Ministry of Works and Supply. Hearing the hon. Minister’s policy statement was quite interesting because I was able to weigh the portfolios of the ministry, which is very important in the governance of this country because it is bestowed with serious responsibilities.


Mr Lusambo: In Magoye!


Dr Chibanda: Madam Chairperson, I will debate three functions of the ministry, starting with the maintenance of Government buildings.


Madam, the ministry is the custodian of all public buildings across various sectors, including schools, colleges, universities, health facilities and public offices at home and abroad, as stipulated in the Public Health Act, Chapter 441 of the Laws of Zambia. However, looking at the funds that have been given to it, obviously, it will be a challenge for it to meet its obligations.


Madam, the ministries of Works and Supply, and Housing and Infrastructure Development are Siamese twins, and the belief of the people of Mufulira is that it is cheaper to build than to maintain. The Ministry of Works and Supply is responsible for all Government houses, starting from the top most, which is State House, to the most common house of a civil servant. Some public houses have not been maintained since they were constructed. So, the ministry needs more funding. Therefore, I appeal to the hon. Minister of Finance to increase its allocation in the future. In his Budget Speech, he indicated that the Government would establish a fund for infrastructure development in 2018. I propose that part of that fund be administered by this ministry for the purposes of infrastructure maintenance.


Madam Chairperson, one of the departments of this ministry is the Government Printing and Stationery Department, which is commonly known as ‘Government Printers’. Unfortunately, the department has not been operating to its optimum effectiveness for a long time because of a lack of funds. As the House might be aware, the Head of this State in this great nation, His Excellency the President, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, paid an impromptu visit to the department during which he said it should be funded for it to better its services and that the ballot papers for the 2021 by-elections must be printed by the department.


Hon. Opposition Members: By-elections?


Dr Chibanda: I meant ballot papers.


Madam, it is a shame that fifty-three years after Zambia’s Independence, the Government still spends colossal sums of money on printing ballot papers outside the country, yet it has a public printing department. Therefore, the hon. Minister of Finance should consider giving that institution a substantial amount of money to revamp its operations and make it competitive in the printing industry so that all the Government ministries can print their materials at the department.


Mr Mwamba: Quality!


Dr Chibanda: As I have said, Government Printers should be modernised and have state-of-the-art printing equipment.


Mrs Katuta: Hear, hear!


Dr Chibanda: Madam Chairperson, it was interesting to hear the hon. Minister talk about how his ministry will implement mechanisms for monitoring the Government fleet. However, I think the measures he mentioned are for the long term. So, I appeal to him to think of ways of immediately mitigating the scourge of misuse of public vehicles. It is quite embarrassing to see a vehicle with a Government of the Republic of Zambia (GRZ) plate number parked at a disco house at 2300 hours.


Mrs Katuta: Hear, hear!


Dr Chibanda: That is unacceptable. We know that some senior Government officials are entitled to personal-to-holder vehicles. However, they should engage in some introspection on the way they use those vehicles. When they go to socialise and engage in mischief, why do they not go in their personal vehicles and leave the official vehicles?




Dr Chibanda: Recently, a picture of a Government vehicle laden with charcoal was sent to me by someone. Whether the vehicle belonged to the Forestry Department and the charcoal had been confiscated from someone or not, it should have been transported in a better way because the picture gave the impression that Government vehicles are used in the charcoal business by private citizens.


Madam Chairperson, ‘smash-and-grab’ is the technical term for ‘smoked’ or ‘tinted’ vehicle windows, and I know that windows of some Government vehicles are tinted for security reasons. However, I think that should only be done to vehicles used by Permanent Secretaries (PSs) and those above them. It is saddening that a Government vehicle might be given to a director as a personal-to-holder, but members of the public cannot see what is inside it because its windows are tinted. What do the users of those public vehicles hide when they should be as transparent as possible? If they tint their vehicles, we may start wondering what they are hiding in them. The other time, I had stopped at some traffic lights and saw a Government vehicle next to me, but I could not see whether there was a Minister or a PS in that vehicle because, trust me, I could hardly see inside it. There is no need for the windows of Government vehicles to be tinted to the extent where we can suspect that they carry contraband.


Madam Chairperson, I know that, in previous Governments, there was a Mechanical Services Department (MSD). However, it was closed. I think it is high time we realised that the Government needs to be run as a business. For example, for a Government vehicle in a place like Chavuma to be serviced, it has to be driven 700 km to the nearest Toyota Zambia branch in Solwezi. So, by the time it is serviced and gets back to Chavuma, it would have clocked nearly 1,000 km. I think that can be mitigated by resuscitating the MSD in the Ministry of Works and Supply because Toyota Zambia and its competitors in the motor industry are there for profit. The ministry, on the other hand would create more employment if it re-established the department. Maybe, the Ministry of Finance should provide the funds for that department to be re-established. I know the department had many challenges, but so does every system. Time has passed and it is time we put in place mechanisms for effecting checks and balances. We can run the MSD or whatever we can choose to call it in a more efficient and effective manner.


Madam Chairperson, I think the hon. Minister has done well. I just request the hon. Minister of Finance to give the ministry more funding because the responsibility it carries is quite colossal. It deals with the maintenance of the infrastructure of this country.


Madam Chairperson, I know we are not supposed to debate ourselves, but I will look at the issue about which I am about debate from a different dimension.


Madam, it is time the Government fleet for the transportation of very important persons (VIPs) was improved. For example, when we go on tours, Parliament hires vehicles that are not secure for us. No wonder, we are having accidents  ...


The Chairperson: Order, hon. Member!


You may not debate in that manner, as you know.


Dr Chibanda: Thank you, Chairperson, for the guidance.


Madam, sometimes, when VIPs come into the country for important functions, the Government rents vehicles for them from private citizens, yet it can establish a section that can manage a fleet of vehicles for VIPs.


With those few remarks, I support the Vote.


I thank you, Madam.


Mr S. Mulusa (Solwezi Central): Madam Chairperson, thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to support this Vote on behalf of the people of Solwezi Central.


Madam, I know that most Government buildings are in a very dilapidated state and I believe that the Ministry of Works and Supply has no capacity to maintain them. So, the ministry should be funded adequately so that it can attend to those structures, especially in the North-Western Province. If you go to Solwezi, today, you will find that the Provincial Administration Block where the hon. Minister and the PS work look like they are in a war-torn country. There is a new building for the municipal council, which decorates the town, and I pray that, next time, the ministry will be given enough money to build a new structure for the provincial administration.


Madam Chairperson, regarding Government vehicles, it is shocking that wherever you go and at whatever time, you will find them. It is also incontestable that nothing much is being done to prevent wastage of public finances through unnecessary expenditure incurred by Government vehicles. I remember that under the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) Government, there were inspectors on the roads after 1700 hours to prevent the abuse of Government vehicles by senior Government officials, including Ministers. One needed a pass to drive a Government vehicle at the weekend. However, what I see now is that anyone can drive any Government vehicle anywhere and at any time, even during election campaigns. During the last general election, Government vehicles were given to cadres in all the districts of the North-Western Province. Some were labelled “For sale” and fixed with private number plates. Today, the ministry ...


Prof. Luo: Evidence!


Mr S. Mulusa: … was selling vehicles to cadres, yet this Government is for all the people of Zambia and every Zambian must benefit from its resources. Zambians are losing money every day because of the mismanagement of Government vehicles.


Madam Chairperson, Government Printers was well-equipped with new equipment during the MMD Government and I believe it has equipment capable of printing ballot papers and many other publications. However, we are under-utilising it, although the ministry now has very few responsibilities because what used to be its major function has been moved to other ministries, such as the Ministry of Housing and Infrastructure Development. So, I expect the department to operate like a business so that the ministry can start making money.


Madam Chairperson, the servicing of Government vehicles must be done by the Government like it used to be case in the past. Today, the Government spends a lot of money on taking all its vehicles to private sector garages for servicing, yet it has garages, although they are not well-managed. The workshops and equipment needed to work on the vehicles are all there, and servicing a vehicle is a simple task. The Government would save a lot of money by servicing its own vehicles through this ministry. Why should it take its vehicles to Toyota Zambia or any other car dealer just for the oil to be changed? Even I, a layman, can change oil on a vehicle. 


Madam Chairperson, I know that the furniture for Government ministries is procured by the ministry. However, look at Government offices. When you go to the provincial offices in the North-Western Province, you will see that there is no furniture there. The District Commissioner (DC) has better chairs than the hon. Minister for the province. So, let us make sure that public offices are well-equipped so that people who go there to seek services will know that they are in public offices. I know that Permanent Secretaries (PS) have better furniture than Ministers, and I think that the hon. Minister of Works and Supply must ensure that the political offices are also well catered for so that Ministers and Members of Parliament execute their duties in good offices. It is not only the PSs who should have good furniture.


Madam Chairperson, with those few remarks, I thank you.


Mr Kabanda (Serenje): Madam Chairperson, I listened very attentively to the hon. Minister’s policy statement of the ambitious programmes the ministry intends to implement in responding to the needs and dictates of the country.


Madam, let me comment on the undisposed housing units that were sold during the housing empowerment programme, some of which are falling apart, particularly in the Kafina area of Serenje District. I think that the ministry has already determined their values. However, there has been a delay in handing them over to sitting tenants, and that is causing the Government to lose revenue. So, the houses should be expeditiously handed over to sitting tenants so that the Government can start collecting revenue on them.


Madam Chairperson, I heard that the Government will come up with a bankable project proposal for Government Printers. Indeed, we need to develop a special purpose vehicle not only for Government Printers, but also for other Government functions like the maintenance and rehabilitation of both movable and immovable assets so that we do not lose assets on which the Government has spent a lot of money. We should consider coming up with bankable proposals for delinking such ventures from Government operations, provided we provide them with proper managements to oversee the operations and attract the private sector to invest in them and, perhaps, generate income for the Government as well. We can establish a business that offers maintenance services to the private sector and individuals.


Madam Chairperson, a lot has been said concerning the misuse of Government vehicles. I do not know why we cannot give the responsibility of supervising the use of Government vehicles to the Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA). The current abuse of Government property leaves much to be desired.


Madam Chairperson, I support this budget.


Mr Nkhuwa: Madam Chairperson, in winding up the debate, let me start by responding to Hon. Machila’s debate.


Madam, Hon. Machila seems to be under the impression that all the functions of the Ministry of Works and Supply were given to other ministries. However, the truth is that there is still a lot of work going on at the ministry. As I indicated in my policy statement, the Government has buildings in Zambia, Tanzania, the United States of America (USA) and elsewhere, and it is our responsibility to maintain those buildings, which were neglected for many years because the ministry’s portfolio of functions was over-diversified and more emphasis was placed on new buildings and roads. If we got more resources, we would have too much work for us to cope with. If I asked about the condition of the clinics, schools and police stations in the constituencies, all the hon. Members of this august House would tell me that they are in a deplorable state. However, the ministry can maintain and rehabilitate such infrastructure if given more funding and personnel. The Ministry of Housing and Infrastructure Development’s mandate is to construct new buildings and roads, and the roads should be maintained by the Road Development Agency (RDA). So, I emphasise that the responsibility of maintaining Government property is squarely on the shoulders of my ministry.


Madam Chairperson, Hon. Dr Chibanda responded to some of the issues raised by Hon. Machila, and I thank him for that. He also talked about motor vehicles that are found at discos at midnight and other things. In my statement, I talked about a modern fleet management system that will be anchored on the Smart Zambia initiative, which will enable us to know where each vehicle is at any particular time. So, we will be able to control the use of Government vehicles. If a vehicle is in Mazabuka, for example, every transport officer in the ministry will know when it is supposed to be in Lusaka and have the ability to make any necessary follow-ups. We are in charge of the entire fleet of Government vehicles and we keep a register of them.


Madam Chairperson, we are investigating the story behind the picture of a Government vehicle heavily loaded with charcoal that trended recently on social media and we will soon inform the public about our findings and the measures we will take to prevent such things from recurring.


Madam Chairperson, I agree with Hon. Dr Chibanda’s sentiments on the tinting of motor vehicles. As hon. Members know, the Patriotic Front (PF) is a listening Government.


Hon. Opposition Members: Question!


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkhuwa: So, it takes note of the hon. Member’s sentiments and we are coming up with policies that will address the issue, among others. We will probably approach the hon. Member for more input.


Madam Chairperson, I have also heard the proposal for the re-establishment of the Mechanical Services Department (MSD), which used to service the Government fleet. We will discuss the merits and modalities of doing that.


Madam Chairperson, Dr Mulusa from Solwezi ...


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkhuwa: Sorry, Madam.


Madam, Hon. S. Mulusa ...


Hon. Member: Have you given him that degree?


Mr Nkhuwa: Well, going by the current trend in this Republic, I can honour him, can I not?




Mr Nkhuwa: Madam, Hon. Mulusa talked about the underfunding of my ministry, and I agree with him. We need more funding, part of which will be used to recapitalise Government Printers so that the Government can do all its printing work there, and for security reasons. There was a suggestion that we enter into a partnership with a private investor. We will have to consider the security implications of doing that because sometimes we print very confidential and sensitive documents to which we cannot allow private individuals to have access.


Madam Chairperson, when my ministry wants to sell motor vehicles, it boards them and takes the list the Ministry of Finance, which openly auctions them. So, I do not see how people in the Government could have ideas of buying the vehicles. If they want to buy vehicles, they go on the open market and buy, perhaps, as parties. We do not sell any vehicles to selected people.


Madam Chairperson, I am told that Government vehicles were used in the last elections, but I am not competent to comment on that because I was not there ...


Mr Livune: Question!


Mr Nkhuwa: … and this is the first I am hearing of it. Since I joined the ministry, nobody has raised a complaint on this issue.


Mr Mushimba: It does not exist.


Mr Nkhuwa: As far as I am concerned, that will not happen on my watch.


Madam Chairperson, we would like to see Government Printers print the ballot papers for the 2021 General Elections and will do our best to facilitate that.


Madam, we have heard the call for us to procure decent furniture for the offices of Ministers. Again, it is a question of resources.


Madam Chairperson, Hon. Kabanda from Serenje says some houses in Serenje are falling apart, and I assure him that we will look into the issue. Some of the houses that are crumbling may be on prime Government land. Therefore, we can demolish them and build new public structures.


Madam Chairperson, I think those are the points that were raised. So, let me just assure you that my ministry will seriously look into all of them. We will especially look into the negative comments, as the positive ones comments are just accolades. When somebody blames us, we tend to look into it so that we can be better the plight of the people. We do not look at negative comments as attacks on us.


Madam, in conclusion, I sincerely thank all the people who debated the ministry whether positively or negatively.


I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


VOTE 64/01 (Ministry of Works and Supply Human Resources and Administration Department – K26,765,170)


The Minister of Finance (Mr Mutati): Madam Chairperson, I beg to move the following amendment:


  1. under Unit 01, Programme 1000, Activity 001 ‒ Salaries Division I, by the deletion of “K1,131,470” and the substitution therefor of “K2,350,020”; and


  1. under Unit 01, Programme, Activity 002 ‒ Salaries Division II, by the deletion of “K4,725,980” and the substitution therefor of “K5,845,100”.


Mr Mutelo indicated.


The Chairperson: Hon. Mutelo, are you objecting to the amendment?


Mr Mutelo: Yes, Madam Chairperson.


The Chairperson: Why?


Mr Mutelo: Thank you, Madam Chairperson.


The Chairperson: No, wait. I will ask the question first.


Amendment agreed to. Vote amended accordingly.


Mr Mutelo: Madam Chairperson, I have the circulated amendment. However, the Programme total is totally wrong when you factor in the amendment. The Programme total is K9 million, but some quick arithmetic will give you K11 million. That is why I ...


The Chairperson: Order, hon. Member!


Specify the Programme you are querying and ask your question. The hon. Minister is here and he will answer.


Mr Mutelo: Madam Chairperson, the page is 846, amendment to Vote 64/01 under 001 and 002, where there is K2,350,020 and K5,845,100. The programme total is K11,000,000, but the total indicated is still K9,000,000. If we do some quick arithmetic, we will see that the indicated total is totally wrong.


The Chairperson: You are talking about personnel emoluments. Is that correct?


Mr Mutelo: Madam, I am talking about Human Resource and Administration Unit, …


The Chairperson: Programme 1001?


Mr Mutelo: Exactly.


The Chairperson: Okay.


The allocation in 2017 for Division I was K5,579,961, for 2018, it is K1,131,470. The hon. Minister of Finance has moved an amendment to replace the K1,131,470 with K2,350,020. Now, what is your question?


Mr Mutelo: Madam Chairperson, you go to the Programme total after the amendment under number one and the other one which has been substituted with K5,000.


The Chairperson: Hon. Mutelo, the figure will obviously change.


Hon. Opposition Members: Yes


The Chairperson: … as per the amendment. That is why I put the question. Now, you need to ask the question …


Mr Mutelo: Madam Chairperson, my question is: Is the currently indicated programme total correct? Is it supposed to be K9,000,000 or K11,000,000 after the amendment? Let us do the mathematics and see whether I or the hon. Minister will be proved wrong.


Hon. Opposition Members: Yes


Mr Livune: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: Hon. Minister of Finance, please, briefly explain.


Mr Mutati: Madam Chairperson, the key phrase is “as amended”. The Yellow Book was printed before the amendment. So, the programme total will also be a different figure in line with the amendment.


I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


The Chairperson: Hon. Members, we do not have the luxury of time.


Mr Lubinda: That is right, Madam.


Mr Lufuma (Kabompo): Madam Chairperson, I do not know whether I would still be in order, but I wanted to follow up on …


The Chairperson: No, you will not be in order.


Vote 64/01, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Estimates.


Vote 64/02 – (Ministry of Works and Supply – Government Valuation Department – K8,006,660).


Mr Mwiimbu: On a point of order, Madam Chairperson.


Mr L. N. Tembo: No point of order.


The Chairperson: Hon. Leader of the Opposition in the House, please, resume your seat.


Mr Mwiimbu: On a point of order, Madam Chairperson. We are doing things wrongly here.


The Chairperson: No, Hon. Mwiimbu. Please, resume your seat.


We are considering Vote 64/02.


Mr Mwiimbu: On a point of order, Madam Chairperson.


The Chairperson: No, I will not allow your point of order.


Mr Lufuma: Madam Chairperson, I seek clarification on Programme 3000 …


Mr Mwiimbu: On a point of order, Madam Chairperson.


Mr Lufuma: … Activity 001 – Salaries …


Mr Mwiimbu: On a point of order, Madam Chairperson.


The Chairperson: Hon. Mwiimbu, your member is asking for clarification, and rightly so. Allow him to do that.


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam, the point of order is on him.


Mr Lufuma: And I have resumed my seat.


Mr Mwiimbu: That is the procedure, Madam Chairperson.


The Chairperson: Order, Hon. Mwiimbu!


I have not granted that point of order.


Mr Mwiimbu: You asked me ...


Mr Sing’ombe: Where are we here?


The Chairperson: I am surprised that you wish to disturb your own member who is on the Floor of the House.




Mr Mwiimbu: Yes.


The Chairperson: Hon. Mwiimbu, you and I know very well that we are pressed for time.


Hon. Opposition Members: No!


Mr Syakalima and Mr Sing’ombe: Why are we here?


Mr Syakalima: Is it to rush through our work?


Mr Mwiimbu: It is a procedural point of order for the benefit of this House and the nation.


Mr Sing’ombe: Yes


Mr Syakalima: Why are we sitting then?


The Chairperson: If the Chair does not recognise your point of order, you cannot insist on raising it.




Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: That is why, as you know, …


Mr Syakalima: Even when you a genuine concern?


Mr Mwiimbu: Can we have a division.


The Chairperson: ... the Chairperson has the power to recognise or not recognise a point of order.


Mr Mwiimbu: Ah!


The Chairperson: I have not granted you the opportunity to raise a point of order, and …


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: … you, as one of the leaders in the House, know the procedure very well.


Mr Lufuma, would like to continue with your question on Vote 64/02?


Mr Lufuma: Most certainly, Madam Chairperson.


Madam, I seek clarification on Programme 3000, Activity 001 – Salaries Division I – K2,250,130. This allocation has been doubled. Is that because the ministry will double the number of employees under this scale?


Mr Nkhuwa: Madam Chairperson, the allocation is meant to cater for the payment of salaries for officers in Division I. The variance is a result of an increase in the number of staff, following the movement of Property Management and Housing Unit from Human Resource and Administration (HRA).


I thank you, Madam.


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, as I rise on this issue, I want to find out from the hon. Minister …


Mr Lusambo: We are on Head 64/02.


Mr Mwiimbu: Yes!


The Chairperson: Order!


Allow the Leader of the Opposition in the House to ask a specific question.


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, I seek clarification on Programme … In view of the hon. Minister’s explanation and the amendment approved by this House, will the figures still be the same in this budget or are we approving something totally different here?


Mr Sing’ombe: Yes.


The Chairperson: Which figure?


Mr Mwiimbu: The total, Madam.


The Chairperson: The Head total?


Mr Mwiimbu: The totals for the figures we are looking at. We have approved an amendment, but we have not changed the totals.


Mr Syakalima: It has not been accepted.


Mr Mwiimbu: We have not amended the totals. So, we are approving something totally wrong.


Mr Sing’ombe: Yes.


Mr Mwiimbu: That is the issue we are raising here.


The Chairperson: Alright.


Mr Mwiimbu: When an amendment is made to any Vote under a Head, the Head total should also be amended so that we approve the correct figures.


Can the hon. Minister clarify that.


The Chairperson: Hon. Leader of the Opposition in the House, the hon. Minister of Finance explained that the total figure was substituted for another.


Hon. Minister, perhaps you want to clarify further.


Mr Nkhuwa: Madam Chairperson, the total budget for the ministry has not changed.


I thank you, Madam.




The Chairperson: Order, hon. Members on both sides!


Hon. Minister, when there is an amendment in the allocations in a budget, the total changes.  That is why when putting the question I say “as amended”. The figures change will not take place immediately, but they will eventually. The hon. Minister of Finance proposes the amendments to the House and, if you allow him, he, then, changes the figures to reflect the amendment. So, the figures cannot remain the same because a figure has been deleted and substituted replaced with another.


Does that help, Hon. Leader of the Opposition in the House?


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, it does not help because after the amendment, you are asking us to approve the same figure.




The Chairperson: Hon. Mwiimbu, if you have followed, firstly, I read out the figure as it is. Then, I ask the hon. Minister of Finance to move his amendment. Once the amendment is moved, I ask the House whether it agrees with the amendment and, if the House approves the amendment, I ask it, again, to adopt the Vote as amended, meaning that, thereafter, we would have incorporated the amendment into the Vote.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: Order!


Thereafter, you can ask questions on specific items.


When I ask you to adopt the Vote after it has been amended, I do not mention the initial amount because it would have changed. I simply mention the Vote and say “… as amended”. That is the situation. So, just follow what I say. There are very significant words that I use, although I note that hon. Members normally do not follow what I say. When I say “as amended”, I am taking into account the fact that an amendment has been made and that the department total has, therefore, changed. I hope that helps, Hon. Leader of Opposition.


Vote 64/02, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Estimates.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: Order!


As the time is 1255 hours, I suspend Business. The House will resume at exactly 1430 hours. The arrangements that were made yesterday will also apply today.




The Chairperson: Order!


The arrangements are that hon. Members will have their lunch here, at Parliament Buildings. I believe they had lunch here yesterday, did they not?


Hon. Members: We were charged!


The Chairperson: Were you charged?


Hon. Members: Yes!


The Chairperson: Well, I believe we can deal with that issue. It is a tradition that when the Standing Orders are suspended, hon. Members’ lunch is courtesy of Mr Speaker.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: I do not know what happened yesterday, but I am sure we will find out. Enjoy your lunch hon. Members. We will see you at 1430 hours.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Business was suspended from 1255 hours until 1430 hours.











The Chairperson: Hon. Members, I wish to acquaint you with the presence in the Speaker’s Gallery of the following Senators who are also Members of the Committee on Public Administration, Regional Development and the Environment in the Parliament of the Czech Republic.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: Our visitors are:


Hon. Miluse Horska, Vice President of the Senate and Leader of the Delegation


Senator Zbynek Linhart, Senator Jitka Seitlova


Senator Jiri Carbol


Senator Jan Latka


Mr Lukas Novotny, Advisor to the First Vice-President of the Senate


Mrs Jane Kruzikova, Committee Secretary


Mr Zdenek Hofman, Interpreter of the delegation.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Lubinda: Ema Senator aya!


The Chairperson: The delegation is in the country to elevate and strengthen relations between the Czech Republic and Zambia, and will interact with members of the Committee on Energy, Water Development and Tourism; Local Government, Housing and Chiefs Affairs; and other relevant Governmental and non-governmental actors.


I wish, on behalf of the National Assembly of Zambia, to receive our distinguished guests and warmly welcome them into our midst.


I thank you.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!




VOTE 64/03 – (Ministry of Works and SupplyAccounts Department – K5,537,370).


Mr Mutati: Madam Chairperson, I beg to move the House amends Vote 64/03 by the deletion of the Department’s name, that is, “Ministry of Works and Supply – Accounts Department”, and the substitution therefor of the name “Ministry of Works and Supply – Finance Department”.


Amendment agreed to. Vote amended accordingly.


Vote 64/03, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Estimates.


Votes 64/07, 64/08, 64/09 and 64/10 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.


VOTE 64/12 – (Ministry of Works and SupplyFinance Department – K2,337,670).


Mr Mutati: Madam Chairperson, I beg to move that the House amends the Vote by the deletion of Vote 64/12.


Amendment agreed to. Vote amended accordingly.


Vote 64/12, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Estimates.


VOTE 78 – (Zambia Security Intelligence Service – K756,109,050).


The Vice-President (Mrs Wina): Madam Chairperson, I am sincerely grateful for this honour to address this august House on the 2018 estimates of expenditure for the Zambia Security Intelligence Service (ZSIS).


Madam, one of the mandates of the ZSIS is to ensure national security through security intelligence and counter-intelligence. In this regard, it is incumbent upon this august House to give the institution the support necessary for it to effectively deliver on its mandate. As stipulated in the Republican Constitution, it is the responsibility of the ZSIS to protect the Republic of Zambia and its people against threats to national security. However, the institution cannot execute this mandate without the adequate financial resources necessary to its effective and efficient functioning, and it is our duty to provide the resources needed by the institution, limited though they may be, to match its ever-changing operational challenges.


Madam Chairperson, the peace our nation continues to enjoy is as a result of the collective efforts of our defence and security institutions, of which the ZSIS is an integral part. This institution has, over the years, proven to be the country’s reliable first line of defence, mainly due to the support it has continued to receive from this august House. It is against this background that I, once again, appeal to all hon. Members to be supportive in debating these estimates of expenditure. I also appeal to them to embrace the spirit of patriotism, oneness and responsibility, and to develop a sense of ownership of the ZSIS.


Madam Chairperson, in considering this budget, we should be wary of the ever-growing threats to national security, including espionage, terrorism, sabotage, cyber-crime, corruption and human trafficking, which affects not only our country, but also the continent and world at large. In this regard, I stress that no nation can fight these threats in isolation. It is, therefore, imperative that we explore avenues for collaborating with the rest of the world in countering them.


Madam, the Government reaffirms its commitment to maintaining an efficient and professional intelligence service that will meet the people’s expectations. To this end, we pledge to support this noble institution through the continued provision of sufficient financial resources to facilitate its effective and efficient operation. I am also hopeful and confident that this House will continue to support this noble cause.


Madam Chairperson, the 2018 proposed budget for the ZSIS stands at K756,109,050, compared with the 2017 authorised expenditure of K685,796,470. This represents a percentage increase of 10.25 per cent.


Madam Chairperson, in conclusion, allow me to reiterate my appeal to this august House to favourably consider the proposed budget for the ZSIS, which I am honoured to present before it for consideration.


Madam Chairperson, I thank you.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Madam Chairperson, thank you for according me the opportunity to debate the budget for the Zambia Service Intelligence Service (ZSIS). From the outset, I would like to place it on record that I support the budget because this institution is critical to the survival of Zambia as a nation. However, I would like to raise a number of issues I consider very pertinent to the wellbeing of this nation.


Madam Chairperson, it is the considered view of my colleagues on your left and I that the ZSIS should play a pivotal role in the eradication of corruption, embezzlement of funds and other vices that threaten the very existence of Zambia as a nation. I agree with Her Honour the Vice-President that one of the responsibilities of the ZSIS is to fight corruption which, it is right to state, is endemic in Zambia. Therefore, the ZSIS must assist other wings of the Government to curb the scourge. As we have said on several occasions on the Floor of this House, Zambia is on the verge of becoming bankrupt due to corruption. Most of the money that is being raised through taxation and other revenue measures is embezzled, misappropriated and misused.


Hon. Government Members: Question!


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, those who are saying “Question!” are aware of the contents of the Auditor-General’s Report, which was tabled on the Floor of this House ...


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: … and shows that the levels of corruption in this country have risen exponentially. Unless we want to bury our heads in the sand and pretend that all is well, we have to talk about these issues. It is a fact that cases of misapplication and misuse of public resources in this country has risen and that the culprits are known, but they are allowed to go scot-free. We call upon the ZSIS to advise those in the Government that this vice is threatening the survival of Zambia.


Mr Lusambo: Privatisation!


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam, some people are bootlickers to the core. They cannot think on their own.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: Order, hon. Leader of the Opposition in the House!


Please, focus on the debate. 


To the hon. Members on my right, the hon. Leader of the Opposition is referring to the Auditor-General’s Report, a public document, in his debate. If you feel that the information he is citing is incorrect, you are free to challenge it, even on the Floor of this House. However, as long as he is referring to that document, he is certainly in order to do so. Please, do not disturb his debate.


Continue, hon. Leader of the Opposition.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, thank you for your protection.


Madam Chairperson, Her Honour the Vice-President called on us to be patriotic, and I am being patriotic by condemning corruption and protecting the revenue of the country. I am also being patriotic by supporting this Vote. That is patriotism. If I wanted, I could have objected to this budget. However, I am supporting it because I know the role of the ZSIS. I am also urging the service to up its game and ensure that those who abuse our resources are brought to book. I know its officers have the intelligence on who does what in this country. That is the point I am making.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Those who do not agree with me are the ones who are being unpatriotic because the documents are there.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: These are Government documents.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, there are some topical issues in this nation, and we are aware of Zambians’ and other stakeholders’ complaints over the purchase of the fire tenders.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Many issues have been raised over that. We spent more money on those fire tenders than we should have. We should not have spent US$1 million on each fire truck.


Mr Livune: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Strangely, the Government has insured those vehicles at US$250,000 each.


Mr Livune: Masholi.


Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!


Mr Mwiimbu: In insurance, you cannot insure a vehicle or any other property at a less its value. Therefore, the value of those fire trucks is US$250,000 each and, in the event of something happening to one of them, you will not get more than US$250,000 in compensation. So, what happened to the balance of US$750,000 on each truck? I challenge the ZSIS to provide us with the answer because it collaborates with other intelligence services in the world and can easily check the true value of the vehicles.


Madam Chairperson, a bankrupt Government will not be able to fund health and educational institutions in this country. Already, our people are dying in numbers because we cannot afford to provide quality health services to them as a result of the embezzlement of money.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: My colleague, the hon. Minister of Finance, has put it on record that he cannot spend more than 10 per cent of the Budget on capital projects because we do not have the money, and we know that there was reckless borrowing in this country before he was appointed.


Mr Livune: That is right.


Mr Mwiimbu: That is what has led us to this financial malaise, and the ZSIS could have advised those in the Government against that irresponsible borrowing.


Mr Livune: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Very soon, mark my words, Zambia will be bankrupt and we will go back to the days when we used to beg the international community to forgive ...


Mr Lusambo: Question!


Mr Mwiimbu: ... our debts.


Mr Livune: Zambia will be sold.


Mr Sing’ombe: Continue eating shoes.




Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, it is the responsibility of all of us here to protect the money that is appropriated in this House.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam, I recall that when the Patriotic Front (PF) came into power, ...


Mrs Simukoko interjected.


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, sometimes, when people grow up, but they are not in the mood of being in the family way, they become confused and start making noise.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: I do not understand to what you are referring, Hon. Leader of the Opposition.


Mr Mwiimbu: I am responding to those ...


The Chairperson: Order!


Just focus on the debate.


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, much obliged.


Madam Chairperson, when the PF came into power in 2011, it decided to reverse the privatisation of the Zambia Telecommunications (ZAMTEL) Company Limited. It was concerned about the security implications of the company being in private hands, and we agreed with our colleagues and supported its nationalisation. Alas! The Government of the day has decided to ignore those security considerations and privatise vital services in this country, such as the management and registration of vehicles, and installation of security cameras in this country. Those cameras will capture both military and civilian vehicles, ...


Hon. Opposition Members: Ah!


Mr Mwiimbu: ... and the data will be in the hands of a private institution.


Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!


Mr Mwiimbu: What has changed?


Madam, in war times, the data on the movement of military vehicles in will be in the hands of a private company. So, I expect the ZSIS to object to the privatisation of traffic management. The Government should have mandated a parastatal company to manage that service. Why are we sacrificing the security of this nation? Maybe, it is because some people have beneficial interests in the company to which the concession has been given.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: We have allowed a private company to make US$12 million annually for seventeen years or US$200 million in total. That is a fact, and a ministerial statement to that effect was issued on the Floor of this House.


Mr Sing’ombe: Shame!


Mr Mwiimbu: I am stating this without fear of any contradiction. Where can you find a private investor making a profit of US$12 million in the first year of investment?


Hon. Opposition Members: Zambia.


Mr Mwiimbu: Only in Zambia.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: That is where such a thing can happen.


Madam, if the Government knew there was an opportunity for that kind of money to be made, why did it not ask Zambians to form a consortium to which the concession could have been given? Why has it sold the rights of the citizens of this country? Who is patriotic? Even if one is the number one bootlicker, this is not what one does.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Let us be patriotic. There is no other country to which we belong, other than Zambia.


Madam, the people of Zambia look at us and get worried. They also complain of being overtaxed. Meanwhile, the Government has allowed foreigners to come and rip the benefits of taxation. So, I call upon the ZSIS to rise above board and advise the Head of State to stop such things happening. The Government should cancel that concession because it is not in the interest of Zambians.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, tribalism has become very rife in this country, and the ZSIS had the responsibility to advise those in power and the Head of State to nip it in the bud because it is dividing us.


Mr Livune: That is right.


Mr Mwiimbu: Madam Chairperson, I am sure that the ZSIS has heard, and that it will advise accordingly. Had I more time, I would continue.


Madam, I support the Vote.


I thank you, Madam.


Dr Malama (Kanchibiya): Madam Chairperson, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to debate this Vote. I also thank Her Honour the Vice-President for her statement on the proposed budget for the Zambia Security Intelligence Services (ZSIS).


Madam, the ZSIS is an important multi-dimensional organisation that safeguards the security of our land, and it has worked faithfully for this country since its inception, including during the very difficult time through which this country went when it had to liberate countries around it and was continuously under attack by those who opposed democracy. I, therefore, commend those who have served in the organisation in the past, those who serve in it today and the leadership for the work that they have done to sustain our way of life.


Madam Chairperson, just like other democratic countries, this country faces emerging and changing threats to its security. Therefore, in supporting this Vote, I urge those who serve us in this organisation to remember that they serve a democratic country and that they should, therefore, be above board. They should be unified under their purpose of shepherding this country to greatness and recognise the threats that this country faces. We are blessed with natural resources, such as uranium, on which the ZSIS must keep an eagle’s eye. It should protect them and keep them from falling into hands that will use them against human civilisation.


Madam Chairperson, we are also faced with threats of terrorism, as countries near us have been attacked, as have countries far from us. Therefore, there is a great need to preserve Zambian’s interest both at home and abroad. In this regard, I call upon all hon. Members of this House to support this Vote. I also urge the citizens of this nation to support the ZSIS and ensure it succeeds so that our way of life, including that of our children, grandchildren and generations to come, will be preserved.


Madam Chairperson, some concerns have been expressed regarding counter-terrorism. For example, my brother, Dr Chanda, expressed his concern over the happenings on the Copperbelt, particularly in Ndola, where foreign nationals have been coming through. We have seen that pattern before. Yes, Zambia is a hospitable nation that welcomes foreigners. However, some foreigners come with the intention to cause harm. So, I urge the ZSIS, and the other law enforcement, security and defence agencies to be vigilant and thwart the endeavours of those who may want to cause harm. Such people will also meet a vigilant citizenry that will protect the interest of this land.


Madam, I do not want to take up much of your time, except to say that I support this Vote.


I thank you, Madam.


Mr Syakalima (Chirundu): Madam Chairperson, in supporting the budget for the Zambia Security Intelligence Service (ZSIS), I would like to adopt the debate of Hon. Mwiimbu, as I think that he debated this Vote very well, and I hope that our Government is following this debate. I also hope that it will take seriously what hon. Members say in this House because what is at stake is the country.


Madam Chairperson, Her Honour the Vice-President has enumerated a number of things that the ZSIS has to deal with in the country, among them terrorism, corruption and cyber-crime. The organisation can fight crime because it is found in every district of this country. It is not thin on the ground. However, how does it fight corruption? Think about this: The Government has allocated K61 million for the operations of the ZSIS across the country, but bought forty-two fire tenders at US$42 million. So, in discussions on fighting corruption, the procurement of the forty-two fire tenders will be repeatedly cited here. The US$42 million translates into K420 million. There has been allegations of corruption in the purchase of fire tenders at a cost of K420 million, yet the Government has given the people who should investigate that allegation K61 million. Is that really being interested in fighting corruption?


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Syakalima: This is just lip service being paid to the issue.


Madam, corruption is just one small aspect of the mandate of the ZSIS. As Her Honour the Vice-President stated, the institution also fights against terrorism. However, how can it do so on a K61 million annual budget?


Madam Chairperson, intelligence officers are also supposed to be present at all borders where goods enter the country because there is too much smuggling of goods in and out of the country. Do our colleagues know what “Operations by the Service” means? I can see that K4 million has been set aside for capacity building. However, do they know that they also need to invest a lot in modern ways of intelligence gathering? What capacity will be built with this amount of money?


Mr Livune: Hear, hear!


Mr Syakalima: We need to get serious. Maybe, we are hiding something here. We do not seem to want this institution to fight corruption and terrorism, even though we make pronouncements to that effect. There are many things that happen, and one cannot conduct surveillance for the whole year using K61 million. It does not happen that way anywhere in the world. In case hon. Members are not aware, intelligence is very expensive because it protects a country. So, we cannot engage in child’s play like this.


Madam Chairperson, like my brother said, this country is bankrupt because of corruption.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Syakalima: This Government is topping the charts in everything in the whole of sub-Saharan Africa, be it in indebtedness, corruption, disease, hunger, squalor, poverty or cholera.


Hon. Opposition: Licking boots?


Mr Syakalima: Number one!




Hon. Government Member: Privatisation?


Mr Syakalima: The current privatisation about which Hon. Mwiimbu talked? Yes, it is there.




The Chairperson: Order, hon. Member! Y


You are losing focus. Please, get back on track and ignore the running commentaries.


Mr Syakalima: Madam Chairperson, I will ignore the bootlicker.


Madam Chairperson, a time must come when what is put in the Budget makes sense which, to me, this budget does not do.


Madam Chairperson, when Her Honour the Vice-President said we must be patriotic, I quickly checked Sydney J. Harris’ distinction between patriotism and nationalism. He says a patriot is proud of his country for what it does while a nationalist is proud of his country no matter what it does. The first attitude, that is, being patriotic, creates a feeling of responsibility while the second, that is, being which is nationalistic, amounts to blind arrogance that leads to war, just like bootlicking.




Mr Syakalima: So, being patriotic means being proud of what our country does. Now, am I to be proud that this country is called a corrupt one? Am I to be proud that we are so indebted? No.


Mr Ngulube: Question!


Mr Syakalima: Madam, we must change as a country. When we become a corruption-free country, when our levels of indebtedness, disease prevalence, hunger, poverty, squalor and ignorance decrease, we shall all be proud of ourselves and become patriots. I know we cannot correct everything simultaneously, but there must always be a starting point and I thought that a potentially good starting point is to adequately fund State institutions that fight corruption in order for them to operate normally.


I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


The Vice-President: Madam Chairperson, I thank the three hon. Members who have debated this Motion.


Madam, I am encouraged to note that all the debaters have emphasised the need to support the ZSIS and increase funding to it.


Madam Chairperson, the ZSIS continues to assist other security wings in fighting corruption by providing early warning information. Further, I assure all the hon. Members who have debated that all the issues raised in the Auditor-General’s Report have been handed over to the investigative wings for action to be taken. Therefore, there is no need to belabour this issue anymore. In fact, we are as passionate about fighting corruption as my hon. colleagues who debated this Vote. We equally do not want to see this cancer spread more than it has in our society.


I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Vote 78/01 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.


VOTE 77 – (Ministry of Defence – K3,517,022,560).


The Minister of Defence (Mr Chama): Madam Chairperson, it is my honour and privilege to present to this august House the 2018 budget for the Ministry of Defence.


Madam Chairperson, I wish to take this opportunity to commend the hon. Minister of Finance, Mr Felix Mutati, for presenting the 2018 National Budget under the theme “Accelerating Fiscal Fitness for Sustained Inclusive Growth without Leaving Anyone Behind”.


Madam Chairperson, in our quest to present an all-embracing budget sensitive to the development needs of the nation, we have taken into consideration pronouncements by the Presidency, the progressive Patriotic Front (PF) Manifesto and the Seventh National Development Plan (7NDP) in formulating the ministry’s 2018 budget.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: Madam Chairperson, the mission statement of the Ministry of Defence is “To preserve, protect and defend the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Zambia in order to maintain peace and security for all our citizens and residents”.


Madam Chairperson, in 2017, my ministry had an approved budget of K3,204,642,848, of which K2,297,745,482 had been released as at 31st September, 2017. With that funding, my ministry achieved the following:


Modernisation of the Defence Force


My ministry has continued to modernise the Defence Force through the procurement of specialised equipment for operations. Further, the ministry continues to professionalise its personnel through participation in regional and international defence and peace-keeping operations.


Infrastructure Development


Madam Chairperson, my ministry, through the Zambia National Service (ZNS), Land Development Branch (LBD), has continued with the implementation of the Rural Roads Connectivity Programme. So far, 1,600 km of road network has been constructed in partnership with the provincial administrations, local authorities and other stakeholders. Other infrastructure development projects completed include ZNS Airport Farms Steel Grain Sheds, Zambia Army Medical Stores in Arakan Barracks, 48th Marine Office Blocks in Kawambwa, and the construction and equipment of the Aircraft Simulator Building at Zambia Air Force (ZAF) Base in Lusaka.




Madam Chairperson, my ministry recognises the importance of the agricultural sector to the enhancement of economic growth in our country. To that effect, it has mechanised five ZNS units, which has led to increased crop production. This august House might wish to note that in the 2016/2017 Farming Season, the ZNS cultivated 2,280 ha of maize, 245 ha of wheat and 490 ha of soya beans fields, from which it harvested 7,800 tonnes of maize, 580 tonnes of wheat and 2,382 tonnes of soya beans. This achievement has immensely contributed to the food security of our country.


Youth Skills Development


Madam Chairperson, in the 2017 Budget, my ministry was allocated K10 million for the construction of a youth training centre at the ZNS Chishimba Camp in Kasama. I wish to report that the centre has been completed and is ready to start providing training.


International Engagements


Madam Chairperson, my ministry continues to actively participate in regional and international engagements aimed at contributing to the maintenance of international peace and security. In this regard, it participated in five joint permanent commissions (JPC) with Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Zimbabwe. As hon. Members may be aware, the JPCs on defence and security are a platform on which with our neighbouring countries resolve matters of mutual interest in defence and security for the purpose of maintaining good neighbourliness. Further, the Zambia Army has continued to contribute troops to United Nations (UN) peace-keeping and support operations, particularly to the Central African Republic (CAR). I wish to report that, due to the excellent performance of our troops, an additional infantry company was deployed on 5th September, 2017, on UN request. My ministry has also continued to send officers as military observers in conflict-torn areas of the continent. In addition, the three defence forces have participated in various Southern African Development Community (SADC) joint military exercises.


Highlights on the 2018 Ministerial Budget


Madam Chairperson, my ministry’s 2018 budget is K3,517,022,560, representing an 8.8 percentage increase on the 2017 allocation. Of the 2018 allocation, K3,020,999,890 or 86 per cent of the total will go towards personnel emoluments while of the balance of K496,022,670 or 14 per cent, K63,507,540 has been allocated to infrastructure development, K98,528,450 to operations, K132,315,370 to rations and K201,671,310 to recurrent departmental charges.


Madam Chairperson, allow me to highlight the key programmes for 2018.


Presidential Milling Initiative


Madam Chairperson, through the Presidential Milling Initiative, the ZNS will set up two milling plants, each with a production capacity of 240 metric tonnes of maize meal per day, in Monze, Southern Province, and Mpika, Muchinga Province.


Infrastructure Development


Madam Chairperson, in accordance with the 7NDP, my ministry has set aside K50 million for the continued rehabilitation and construction of rural feeder roads throughout the country. In addition, it will continue constructing barracks and housing units for our men in uniform.


Youth Skills Training Programme


Madam Chairperson, K10 million has been set aside for youth skills training in the 2018 Budget. Pursuant to the completion of the Chishimba Youth Training Centre, my ministry is ready to enrol, at least, 1,000 youths in the first intake.




Madam Chairperson, the ZNS plans to cultivate 4,000 ha during the 2017/2018 Farming Season, broken down as follows:


  1. 2,460 ha of maize;


  1. 950 ha wheat; and


  1. 590 ha soya beans.


These targeted production will lead to a 23 per cent increase on the 2016/2017 figures.


Mr Lubinda: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: Madam Chairperson, in conclusion, my ministry will continue to support all the Government programmes and activities highlighted in the PF Manifesto, 7NDP and the National Budget in order to foster national development and peace. It is in this regard that I now call upon all the hon. Members of this august House to fully support the approval of the 2018 Ministry of Defence budget ably presented by Hon. Felix Mutati.


Madam Chairperson, I thank you.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Gen. Sitwala (Kaoma Central): Madam Chairperson, I am grateful for the opportunity to debate this Vote, which is very close to my heart because I served in the defence forces for over thirty years.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Gen. Sitwala: Madam Chairperson, I fully support this budget. However, the figures that have been presented by the hon. Minister may look impressive only in the eyes of somebody who has not been associated with the defence forces. To me, the K3,517,022,560 that has been allocated to the ministry is insignificant in the face of our need to look after our men and women in uniform well. Obviously, the importance of the defence forces cannot be over-emphasised.


Madam Chairperson, the job that the defence forces, commonly also known as the Instruments of Power, do day in and day out is very important. They have kept the peace of this country since Independence and continue to do so. We, therefore, need to give them a lot of money to keep their activities going. We also need to look into their welfare if they are to serve this country better. That is why, as someone who knows exactly what is required of them, I say that the money that has been allocated to them is not very impressive.


Madam Chairperson, peace and security are very difficult to measure because they are not like maize and copper whose production can be measured in numbers of bags or tonnes.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Gen. Sitwala: There is a lot that goes into safeguarding a country and the equipment that the men and women in uniform use has become quite expensive on the international market. Further, our officers have been using old equipment for some time now and they require a lot of money to maintain and replace it.


Madam Chairperson, the welfare of our men and women in uniform is not taken care of very well. For example, just on accommodation ‒ as I want to avoid talking about some other things ‒ fifty-three years after Independence, some soldiers still lack accommodation. I know some small effort has been made to address the situation, but some soldiers still sleep in cracked and leaking houses in the barracks. With some houses, the one sleeping in them is able to see what is happening inside the next house. There are also military cantonments in this country where soldiers go for days, if not weeks, without water supply. Those are not situations in which our men and women in uniform can serve us well. I know the hon. Minister is aware of these cardinal issues I am raising because he is briefed on them regularly. So, they need to be taken into consideration. Unfortunately, the budget that has been presented by the hon. Minister does not give hope, and it seems that we will talk about these problems for many years to come if we do not come up with holistic solutions.


Madam Chairperson, we in Lusaka may think that all is well, judging by what we see about the few soldiers with whom we interact. However, one of the challenges this country faces is the provision of uniforms to our soldiers, which need to be replaced regularly at a cost. I also wish to remind the hon. Minister that we have a very big problem in paying leave and terminal benefits to our men and women in uniform. Our soldiers go for years without getting anything, and I think this is not a good situation, as it even deprives newly-recruited soldiers the opportunity to be decently accommodated in the barracks. In some gazetted barracks, some soldiers are building their own accommodation using loans. At some point, those soldiers will retire. So, they will not be able to continue living in their houses in the barracks. Given the fact that we do not recruit soldiers on a regular basis anymore, it is difficult for such officers to sell their houses upon retirement. In the past, it might have been easy to sell the houses to new recruits. Now, people are losing out. Honestly, how can we keep our defence and security forces in this kind of situation and be proud that we have the Zambia Army, the Zambia Air Force (ZAF) and the Zambia National Service (ZNS). These issues must be looked into because we have been talking about them for a long time. I could have belaboured the issues I am raising, but I know that  ...


Hon. Members: Continue!


Gen. Sitwala: ... the hon. Minister of Defence is aware of them.


Madam Chairperson, another important issue that I want to raise is that of ...


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Gen. Sitwala: ... the importance of recruitments. It is important to conduct regular recruitments that are national in nature. The defence forces, like Civil Service organisations, have staff establishments. So, if we will recruit soldiers after intervals of three to five years, we will find it difficult to fill the gaps in the structures. Further, when those with experience retire, they will be replaced by inexperienced personnel, which will not be ideal. 


Madam Chairperson, of late, we have heard of recruitments of only a few people to take up a few vacancies created by retirements and deaths. Given the fact that the current leadership of the country is from one region, we will definitely end up recruiting only from the region that is more represented in the political leadership of this country ...




Gen. Sitwala: … to the disadvantage of the other regions, and that is not ideal. So, the recruitments must be advertised nationally so that people from all over Zambia participate in them if we are to sustain the peace we have enjoyed over the years. 


Madam Chairperson, I hope that the issues that have been raised today will be taken into consideration as they are aimed at ensuring that the defence forces will have a national character and continue keeping the peace that we so much cherish in our country.


I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: Hon. … I nearly forgot. Hon. Dr Kopulande, you may debate.


Mr Ngulube: Hammer, hammer!


Dr Kopulande (Chembe): Madam Chairperson, thou shalt not forget.


Madam, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to support my brother, the hon. Minister of Defence, on the budget he has presented.


Ms Mulenga: Ema doctor aba!


Dr Kopulande: Madam Chairperson, on several occasions, we have been told, especially by the Western countries, to keep our defence spending on the minimum. Unfortunately, the people who tell us that are the highest defence spenders, and the reason is simple. Defence expenditure is like insurance. One never knows in advance when it will rain. People say Zambia is surrounded by eight countries, but I add Burundi to them, as we are linked to it by Lake Tanganyika. Unfortunately, some of the countries around us have experienced armed conflicts and civil wars, some of which tended to spill over our boundaries.


Madam Chairperson, I represent people who live on our border with a country that is experiencing internal civil strife. Further, my constituency is in a province that is receiving a large number of refugees. I believe the number of refugees who have come in from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is more than 10,000. Therefore, we have to be prepared and consider defence spending necessary to keeping the skirmishes in some of our neighbouring countries from spilling over into our country.


Madam Chairperson, we must be proud of the very positive international reputation our defence forces have acquired …


Dr Malama: Hear, hear!


Dr Kopulande: … by their good conduct on missions sponsored by the United Nations (UN) and the African Union (AU). Wherever Zambia has participated, its troops have been highly praised for being very professional. It is also commendable that, during times of peace, the military has not sat idly to wait for war, but has been involved in various activities, such as food production and responses to emergencies across this country. For example, the engineering corps of the Zambia Army have repaired washed-away bridges while the army and the Zambia Air Force (ZAF) have been involved in the distribution of relief food and electoral materials during elections. Therefore, they have been a key supporter of the democratic processes of our country. I, therefore, commend our gallant forces for the good job they are doing.


Madam, I would like to acknowledge that, under the Government of the Commander-in-Chief, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, …


Ms Mulenga: Hear, hear!


Dr Kopulande: … the defence forces been highly motivated. You may recall that, in 2014, their conditions of service were improved greatly, including a tremendous increase of their salaries. Additionally, most of them were accommodated in the new houses built by the Zambia National Service (ZNS). Evidently, contrary to the picture painted by the previous debater, the conditions are getting better. However, Rome was not built in a day. Suffice it for me to say that I believe the hon. Minister of Defence, a capable administrator, and the competent Commander-in-Chief are fully aware of the needs of the forces and will attend to them. Those officers who are not accommodated have been receiving a substantial housing allowance to rent houses outside military cantonments.


Madam Chairperson, what concerns me is that the compulsory retirement age in some military institutions, some of which have highly-qualified professionals like medical doctors and engineers, is fifty-five. This causes a major challenge because the forces have to lose such valuable staff trained at a high cost every now and then, thereby implying the need to replace the lost expertise. Meanwhile, in the Civil Service, retirement is optional between fifty-five and sixty-five. So, I propose that the same retirement age applies in both the Civil Service and the defence forces.  Imagine that, in the military, I would have been retired three years, and I am sure you would have been too ...


Mr Ngulube: Question!


Mr Mutale: Question!


Dr Kopulande: … despite our still evident ability to contribute to this country. The medical doctors in the forces are capable of serving beyond the age of fifty-five. Therefore, I suggest that we review the retirement age for military personnel.


Madam Chairperson, the hon. Minister has said that 86 per cent of the ministry’s budget will go to personnel emoluments while only 14 per cent will go to operations. That is unfortunate because armed forces need many supplies. It is, therefore, not surprising that many suppliers to the military tend to go unpaid for a long time. Some have folded up or have been liquidated by banks after failing to repay loans. Of course, that is not the fault of the armed forces. We should blame ourselves for insufficiently funding them.


Madam, like I said, we can never know when it will rain. Therefore, I think it is important that we consider raising the funding to the Ministry of Defence so that our armed forces can operate effectively and maintain the international reputation they have acquired through professionalism in the services that they have provided to the international peace-keeping effort.


I thank you, Madam Chairperson.


Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Ngulube: Ema doctor aba!


Mr Lufuma (Kabompo): Madam Chairperson, thank you for giving me this opportunity to contribute to the debate on this ‘extremely’ important Vote, as Hon. Prof. Lungwangwa would have asserted.


Madam, the military is a very important institution because it is there to keep the peace of this country. We enjoy peace because of the military. Without peace, there would be no enjoyment of life or development in this country. There would not even be a Parliament to sit and approve the Budget. That is how important the military is.


Madam Chairperson, I agree with Hon. Dr Kopulande on the retirement age in the defence forces. As it is said, wine matures with age. So, military generals like Hon. Gen. Sitwala retire just when they are maturing …




Mr Sing’ombe: Hear, hear!


Dr Kalila: He is a young man!


Mr Lufuma: … and grasping the art of their trade. We should retain them in the military beyond that stage so that they can direct it and strategise for it. Why are we limiting the retirement age for military generals to fifty-five years? Maybe, this retirement age should apply to the men because there is a difference between men and officers in the military. Those of us who have been in the army know these things.




Mr Lufuma: I was just joking.




Mr Lufuma: Madam, the men in the military can retire at fifty-five years because their work is very physical and we want slim and fit people in uniform, not pot-bellied ones. However, it should be different for the officers. We can push their retirement age to sixty-five years.


Mr Mutale: Question!


Mr Lufuma: In the United States of America (USA) and Russia, the military generals are in their seventies, and when they give counsel, people listen to them.


Mr Sing’ombe: Like Gen. Chiwenga.


Mr Lufuma: Yes, like Gen. Constantino Chiwenga. You are right.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Lufuma: Those are the examples of real army generals.


Madam Chairperson, the Zambia National Service (ZNS) is misplaced because its core mandate is agriculture, yet there is nothing that it does regarding agriculture. Who has heard of anything that the ZNS has done in agriculture other than feed itself? There are no indicators of the ZNS being properly placed to do what it is supposed to do. What figures does the hon. Minister have to prove that the service is doing well? I can bet that the ZNS’s production figures are meagre. So, the money being allocated to this institution for agricultural purposes can best be given to small-scale farmers to encourage production and help alleviate poverty at that level. We can turn ZNS camps into training institutions for small-scale producers, which would be ideal because the camps are spread across the country. That is the strategic direction we should consider taking. The other possibility, if we want to adequately utilise the institution, is to make its camps distribution centres for agricultural inputs, which would make the distribution of inputs much easier and the ZNS an effective contributor to the development of this country. Otherwise, we should just let the institution be a military organ with properly trained military personnel, instead of training its personnel partly in military and partly in agricultural practice. We should make a decision on what we want the organisation to do.


Madam Chairperson, the responsibility for grading feeder roads was taken from the Rural Roads Unit (RRU) and given to the ZNS on the premise that the ZNS is more disciplined since it is a military institution. However, what have we gained from that move? Nothing! The feeder roads are still as dilapidated as before. Those in Kabompo look like they are in a war-torn country, as they have craters in the middle.


Mr Sing’ombe: The Rural Roads Unit (RRU) was even better.


Mr Lufuma: Madam, the hon. Member is right. Maybe, the RRU was even better. So, let us look into this situation. If the problem is to do with money, which I think was also the problem when the mandate was still with the RRU. So, we should improve funding to the road sector because, evidently, shifting the portfolio from the RRU to the ZNS has not made a difference. If the hon. Minister wants to impress us, he should let the ZNS come to Kabompo and start working on the roads, especially in the townships. We want the roads to be properly worked on and immediately. Otherwise, there might be a revolution in the constituency.


The Chairperson: Order, hon. Member!


Please, withdraw that statement. Do not incite the people of Kabompo.


Mr Lufuma: Madam Chairperson, a revolution can be a happy one. I am not talking about an armed revolution. There can be an ideological revolution or a change in the way people think. That is what I am talking about.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Sing’ombe: General Lufuma!


Mr Lufuma: Madam Chairperson, let me raise another very important matter that the general did not address adequately, probably because of his background in the army. We should recruit military personnel in accordance with the “One Zambia, One Nation” motto. Currently, we have a big problem in that regard. When KK (Dr Kenneth Kaunda) started building our military after Independence, he ensured that the recruitments were distributed proportionately across the regions. Consequently, we did not have any problems in the armed forces because a critical balance was maintained. Therefore, let us maintain that critical balance across the defence forces by recruiting from every region and tribe. We will, then, not have problems of military coups and things like that. That is very important.


Madam Chairperson, in terms of the modernisation of the military, we cannot achieve that using the amount of money we want to give it, which is peanuts. The military has no equipment and hardware. Its personnel might exhibit discipline when it goes out on missions. However, what is discipline without the necessary equipment? We need equipment so that it acts as a deterrent against aggression. Our neighbours should say, “If you ‘start’ these guys, they may wallop you.”


The Chairperson: Order, hon. Member!


Withdraw the word “guys.”


Mr Lufuma: It is very, very important. They may forget you.


The Chairperson: Order, Hon. Lufuma!


What is the problem today? I asked you to withdraw the word “guys” because it is unparliamentary. Please, withdraw it.


Mr Lufuma: Madam Chairperson, I am very sorry and I definitely withdraw the word “guys”. It was a slip of the tongue.


Madam Chairperson, it is very important that we provide the necessary equipment to the military. Some of us may remember that Independence Day celebrations in the past were marked by march pasts and display of military equipment to show how powerful we were, and doing that was very important. Currently, North Korea is scaring the world because by displaying its military equipment. The United States (US), China and the whole world are trembling after having seen what North Korea has. Meanwhile, we do not have any equipment to display.


Mr Ngulube: On a point of order, Madam.


Mr Lufuma: Our planes ...


The Chairperson: Order, Hon. Lufuma!


You are live on radio and television. Whether it is true or not, it is extremely inappropriate and unpatriotic for you to state that our military does not have equipment. Please, refrain from that kind of debate. We have a duty to be sensitive in what we say in this House, especially when it pertains to the security of the nation.


Please, continue, but take what I have said into account.


Mr Lufuma: Madam Chairperson, thank you very much for your counsel.


Madam, essentially, what I am saying is that we should acquire equipment that will deter aggression from people who may want to accost us. That is very important because it is the reason countries have militaries. It is a guarantee against aggression.


Madam Chairperson, we also have to train our personnel. Currently, the training they undergo leaves much to be desired.


Mr Ngulube: On a point of order, Madam.


Mr Lufuma: Therefore, it is necessary that we allocate enough funds to ensure that our armed forces are adequately trained, as that will help in preserving peace.


Madam Chairperson, lastly, it is necessary for us to keep peace. If you remember, in one of our neighbouring countries, which I will not mention, there was kafwafwa, and we tried to say ...


The Chairperson: Order, hon. Member!


What is kafwafwa?


Mr Lufuma: Madam, ‘kafwafwa’ is an English word. 


Hon. Government Members: Question!


Mr Lufuma: Yes, it is. You can go and ask Dr Scott if you are in doubt. He will explain it to you.


The Chairperson: Okay, but use the common English that we all know.


Mr Lufuma: ‘Chaos’, Madam Chairperson.


Mr Lufuma: Madam, some general in a neighbouring country said, “What is Zambia? If the country wants to impose a dictator on us, we shall run it down in two hours.” Can you imagine that? Our military has to command the necessary respect and the only way to do that is by providing it with the necessary equipment.


Mr Ngulube rose on a point of order.


The Chairperson: Hon. Lufuma, please, resume your seat.


Hon. Member for Kabwe Central, you must try to desist from becoming unruly.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


The Chairperson: You rose before you were given the Floor. I have a very clear view of the House and I can see anyone who indicates. So, if I do not recognise your attempts to raise a point of order, please, do not rise. So, please, resume your seat.


Hon. Lufuma, please, continue.


Mr Lufuma: Madam Chairperson, thank you very much.


Madam Chairperson, it is in times of peace that the army must prepare for war for it cannot prepare for war when at war. Therefore, it is incumbent upon us, as a Government, to ensure that we are always prepared, and we can only do that by giving the military enough resources to be able to defend the sovereignty of this country whenever necessary. It is said that when a blind person says, “I will stone you”, you should watch out because such a person would already be stepping on the stone and can easily get it to stone you with it. Otherwise, he or she would not say that. In the same vein, someone from a neighbouring country threatened us and said that we do not have an army to talk about because he knew that his country is stepping on a stone.


Madam Chairperson, I thank you.


Mr Mwila (Chimwemwe): Madam Speaker, I stand to support the budget presented by the hon. Minister.


Madam, of the thirty ministries and ten provincial administrations, only the Ministry of Defence has allocated K20,000 to the Office of the Permanent Secretary (PS) and K30,000 to the Office of the Minister while, on average, the other ministries allocated K200,000 to each of the offices. I would like to be educated on the secret the hon. Minister of Defence used to come up with such very low budgets for the two offices. Maybe, other ministries will take a leaf from his book. Is it because of the Electronic Governance (e-Governance) Programme he is implementing in the ministry?


Madam Chairperson, in military circles, they say just work and complain later. Unfortunately, this phrase is used to hide a lot of dirt under the carpet. So, I expect the PS to be the union for our men and women in uniform. Allow me to cite one complaint I have come across regarding operations. Allegedly, when the defence forces send soldiers for operations outside Lusaka, mostly to the border areas, for three or six months, they usually end up staying there longer, sometimes twice longer, than initially promised because of a lack of transport to bring them back. This complaint is very prominent among the regular soldiers. So, I appeal to ensure that soldiers on operations do not stay beyond the period for which they are initially deployed.


Madam Chairperson, I note that only K2 million of the ministry’s budget has been allocated to the procurement of motor vehicles for the three defence forces. I have difficulties understanding how this will work, especially when compared with the amount to the proposals from other ministries. This amount is equivalent to what the Ministry of Health will spend on each of the purpose-made ambulances it intends to procure. It seems to me that there is something we are not being told. In that regard, I ask that we do not hide behind the wall of confidentiality to avoid discussing these issues meaningfully. The only way to pre-empt discussions on certain issues is to ensure that enough money is allocated to these departments or Votes.


Madam Chairperson, under the Zambia Air Force (ZAF), I note that the Government has reduced the budget for recruitment and training by 40 per cent and increased by the same margin the budget for air display and exercises. The Government has removed money from recruitment and taken it to air display and exercises, and this decision has not gone down well with our youths in Chimwemwe Constituency because it does not give them hope of ever being recruited as pilots in ZAF. I, therefore, urge the Government to not reduce the allocation for recruitment and training in 2019. Mind you, we have all agreed to work towards creating 1 million decent jobs by 2021 and that is not a simple task.


Madam Chairperson, I have not heard the hon. Minister talk about Military Tribunals which, from what I heard and read, is a very effective department in the defence forces. Due to its effectiveness, I urge the Government to allocate more money to it and, probably, extend its operations. The people of Chimwemwe expect the Ministry of Defence to sit down with its counterpart at the Ministry of General Education to see how all those caught with forged Grade 12 Certificates and other professional qualifications can be tried before military tribunals so that the problem of people having forged qualifications can come to an end. The ministry should also consider the possibility of working with the Ministry of Finance and to ensure that all those reported to have embezzled money in the Auditor-General’s Report appear before a military tribunal.




Mr Mwila: Madam Chairperson, the hon. Minister of Home Affairs has issued statements on the Floor of this House banning the mounting of road blocks at certain points. However, one hour after the hon. Minister issues such directives, road blocks are mounted. The PS in the Ministry of Defence should request a list of those people and take it to a military tribunal. Maybe, after appearing before that important department, they will change and start respecting directives issued by Ministers, which amount to Government policy. At least, that is the belief of the people of Chimwemwe Constituency.


Madam Chairperson, not too long ago, His Excellency Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, the very humble President of our Republic, issued a directive for all those cited in the Auditor-General’s Report to be arrested. Two days later, I read a statement attributed to the Chairperson of the Public Service Commission (PSC) to the effect that the monies to which the controlling officers had helped themselves would be recovered from the culprits’ emoluments through the payroll. I do not know whether the statement was correctly attributed to the Chairperson of PSC. However, if it was correctly attributed, then, the Chairperson is one of the people we want arraigned ...




... because the proclamation of the President is Government policy and a person appointed by the President cannot make a statement that contradicts one issued by the appointing authority. In this regard, I hope that the Secretary-General of the Patriotic Front (PF) is listening because people like the Chairperson are the ones bringing down the popularity of our Government. If he is listening, we need him to send just a few busloads of cadres from Kulima Tower Bus Station to the Chairperson’s office to protect the ...




The Chairperson: Order, hon. ...


Mr Mwila: Madam Chairperson, with these few remarks, I support this budget.


I thank you, Madam.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Ms Mulenga: Ema Independents aba!


The Chairperson: Hon. Members, before the hon. Minister winds up debate, I wish to inform you that I have perused the dictionary and confirmed that the word ‘kerfuffle’ does exist in the Queen’s language. However, I doubt whether its pronunciation is ‘kafwafwa’.




Mr Chama: Madam Chairperson, I thank all the hon. Members who have debated this Vote.


Madam, Hon. Gen. Sitwala, the Member of Parliament for Kaoma Central Constituency bemoaned the low funding to the ministry and wished that more money could be provided to it. I appreciate his concern. However, he should note that the fiscal space of the Budget is limited. The ministry also wishes it could be allocated more money to enable it buy the things to which he referred. Indeed, military equipment is quite expensive. For example, one fighter plane costs millions of dollars. However, his concern is well noted. Hopefully, our economy will grow so that we can forward our needs to the Ministry of Finance for funding.


Madam Chairperson, I think that the Patriotic Front (PF) Government has made strides in providing accommodation to our men and women in uniform. For instance, we have constructed a complex of beautiful and modern houses for them at a great expense to the Government. Some of the houses are still vacant, but we are working tirelessly to convince our men and women in uniform who are still not accommodated to move into them. Some of them have not moved into the houses because they have loans they are servicing, but they have promised to move in later. We are also building a modern barracks in Kala Camp for the 48th Marine Special Unit, which will provide state-of-the-art accommodation. Our men and women in uniform are now willing to move to the camp, which I had the opportunity to visit this year. We have also built houses in Kabwe and Twin Palm, ...


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: ... which all hon. Members can see. That shows that His Excellency the President and Commander-in-Chief, and the PF Government are making efforts to properly accommodate our men and women in uniform.


Madam Chairperson, on water supply, we had challenges in L85, but they have since been overcome and water supply has been restored in those units. The Government is also making efforts to repair dilapidated infrastructure. In Lusaka, the road infrastructure in Arakan Barracks has been worked on. If Hon. Gen. Sitwala went there, he would see that potholes are a thing of the past. We will continue to improve the infrastructure progressively.


Mr Ngulube: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: Madam Chairperson, yes, we owe our men and women in uniform some leave benefits and other allowances, but the Ministry of Finance and my ministry have allocated about K21 million for the dismantling of those arrears.


Madam Chairperson, yes, we have taken a bit of time without recruiting, but we are working round the clock to start recruiting next year to replace those who retire, die or otherwise leave the armed forces. We also want to ensure that we have a youthful defence force are ready to defend our country at all costs.


Madam Chairperson, I agree with Hon. Dr Kopulande that defence is the insurance of any nation and that peace is very essential. You cannot do anything in a nation without peace. Zambia has hosted a number of refugees. As we speak, we have over 12,000 refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). We have also hosted a number of refugees from countries like Angola over the years. So, we have seen that people who run way from war in their country leave everything behind, including money in the bank. That is what happens when peace is lost. Therefore, we should put a high premium on maintaining the peace and security of the nation. That is why we encourage all hon. Members to safeguard the peace we have enjoyed for the past fifty-three years our benefit and the benefit of future generations.


Madam Chairperson, the retirement of highly-qualified people when they could still serve is a Constitutional matter, but this Government has worked to make retirement at fifty-five years optional. One now has the choice to retire either at sixty or at sixty-five years of age. We have many specialists in our military, such as engineers, accountants and clinical officers, and we want to retain qualified personnel, whom we have trained at a high cost to the nation, especially in the medical field, longer. That said, we caution those who want to behave unprofessionally, especially the young, to refrain from being incited by people who do not have the interests of their families at heart; those who promise them promotions when some party comes into Government. Otherwise, such people should not blame the Government when it retires them for being partisan.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: We want professional and non-partisan men and women in uniform. I have noticed that Hon. Gen. Sitwala looks young, but he is probably over sixty-five years of age.




Mr Chama: Madam Chairperson, we endeavour to make provisions for dismantling the arrears we owe our suppliers, whom we urge to be patient. Like I said, we have provided K21 million in this year’s budget for the dismantling of arrears.


Madam Chairperson, Hon. Lufuma talked about the ZNS doing nothing. Let me re-read some statistics because he probably did not pay attention when I issued the policy statement. Unfortunately, he has run away from the House.


The Chairperson: Order, hon. Minister!


He has just gone outside, not run away.


Mr Chama: He has left the Chamber.


Madam Chairperson, I want to reiterate that the ZNS is very productive. We have installed centre pivots and, for the first time, we have grown 100 ha of wheat in the Eastern Province. I was recently in Petauke with the President. We have an ambitious programme to install eight centre pivots so that we can produce more wheat to add the food basket of our nation. This year, we intend to cultivate 400 ha so that we contribute to the production of our nation. So, Hon. Lufuma’s notion of the ZNS being dormant is unfounded. The service is in the able hands of Lt-Gen. Nathan Mulenga and our men and women in the ZNS are doing a commendable of making some of the cantonment areas that were dormant very productive. We shall make sure that these areas are transformed to contribute to national food security.


Madam Chairperson, there was a concern about the quality of training of our men and women in uniform. That opinion is very unfortunate because, had our military personnel received sub-standard training, they would not be receiving the accolades that they receive while serving on UN peace-keeping missions.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: The former UN Secretary-General would also not have requested Zambia to send more troops. As I said in my policy statement, we have contributed another company of soldiers to the UN. I also recently visited the Central African Republic (CAR) where I found that our soldiers are highly esteemed for the professionalism and competence and discipline they display.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear! Ema soldier abo.


Mr Chama: So, the claim that they are not properly trained is uncalled for.


Madam Chairperson, the PF Government and the defence forces do not look at the tribe of people. They leave tribalism to those who practice it and looks at Zambians as Zambians, not members of various tribes.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: When you look at the recruitment patterns and command structure of our defence forces, you will see that they represent all the tribes of this nation. We do not champion tribalism like others who keep perpetuating these issues. We are a non-tribal political party and Government.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Lusambo: Mulebwekeshapo.


Mr Chama: Madam, it is also unfortunate that one can insinuate that our military does not have the necessary equipment because the fact is that it is equipped.


Mr Lubinda: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: The UN could not have requested us to contribute troops if we were not equipped because the troops deployed under the UN must be provided with military equipment. The UN has assessed Zambia’s military equipment and is satisfied, as evidenced by its continued requests for the country to contribute troops to UN missions.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: For your information, we recently acquired six new …


The Chairperson: Order, hon. Minister!


You are now …


Mr Chama: Madam, I would not want to go into details.


Mr Lubinda: Do not go into details.




Mr Chama: Madam, I want to dispel the allegation that the military is not well-equipped. I can tell you that our men and women in uniform are adequately equipped to counter any internal or external acts of aggression.


Ms Mulenga: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: So, Hon. Lufuma’s claim that Zambia has no army is another of his unfortunate statements. The country has an army and a well-equipped air force and ZNS, as well as a well-trained police. If the hon. Member wants to commit a crime and try us out, he will see what will happen to him.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Lubinda: Try us.


Mr Chama: Madam, Hon. Mwila talked about the allocation to the offices of the Permanent Secretary (PS) and the Minister being low. We are just trying to be prudent and utilise our minimal resources for the good of the people of Zambia. We have to be mindful of the ceilings set by the hon. Minister of Finance. We cannot compare what has been provided in our ministry with what has been provided in the other ministries because the circumstances and situations are different. So, we cannot say that the Ministry of Defence has received low allocations.


Madam, there was a concern about our operations being hampered by a lack of transport. In fact, we have adequate transport and our men and women who go on operations are provided with transport to repatriate them back to their areas of operation.


Madam Chairperson, in the budget that is about to be approved, we have provided for the recruitment of military personnel so that we beef up the numbers. This should comfort Hon. Mwila, who talked about the reduction in the numbers of people recruited by ZAF. We are working with the Ministry of Finance to ensure that adequate numbers of personnel are recruited for the armed forces to beef up the numbers. From 2018 going forward, we will recruit men and women to make sure that we guarantee peace and security.


Lastly, Madam Chairperson, I would like to inform Hon. Mwila that military tribunals are not for civilians.


Dr Malama: Hear, hear!


Mr Chama: Those who have been cited in the Auditor-General’s Report cannot be brought before military tribunals. I know that the hon. Member raised his point on a lighter note because he is concerned about the abuse of the meagre resources of our nation and wished the culprits could be taken before a military tribunal so that they could be disciplined. However, we share his desire to see our resources used prudently for the development of our nation.


Madam Chairperson, in conclusion, I thank all hon. Members who have debated this Vote, whether negatively or positively. We will take their concerns on board as we strive to defend and protect our national integrity and maintain the peace of our beloved nation.


Madam Chairperson, I thank you.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Vote 77/01, 77/02, 77/03, 77/04, 77/05, 77/06, 77/08, 77/09 and 77/10 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.


The Chairperson: Order!


(Debate adjourned)






[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]


(Progress reported)








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


Question put and agreed to.




The House adjourned at 1640 hours until 0900 hours on Thursday, 7th December, 2017.