Friday, 14th September, 2018

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Friday, 14th September, 2018


The House met at 1000 hours


[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]










The following hon. Member took and subscribed the Oath of Allegiance:


Sensio Banda








Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, I wish to officially acquaint the House with a fact that is already sadly in the public domain, that is, that the House lost one of its Members, namely Hon. Naluwa Mwene, the Member of Parliament for Mangango Constituency, in a road traffic accident on 28th August, 2018, at Itezhi-tezhi Turnoff on the Lusaka/Mongu Road. The late was eventually buried in Kaoma on 31st August, 2018.


The House was represented at the burial ceremony by the following hon. Members and staff:


Hon. Machila Jamba, MP


Hon. Mbololwa Subulwa, MP


Hon. Rodgers Mwewa, MP


Hon. Dr Martin Malama, MP


Hon. Gerald Zimba, MP


Hon. Sheal Mulyata, MP


Hon. Elijah Muchima, MP


Hon. Kasauta Michelo, MP


Hon. Patricia Mwashingwele, MP


Hon. Douglas Syakalima, MP


Hon. Anthony Kasandwe


Mr Teddy Nyambe, Deputy Principal Clerk-Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Department


Mr Charles Chiyengi, Chamber Assistant


Mr Chikoye Nakempa, Office Driver


Mr Dominic Njobvu, Office Driver


Hon. Members, I have conveyed the condolences of this House to the bereaved family. Further, at an appropriate stage in the proceedings this morning, the House will be requested to observe a minute of silence in honour of the memory of the late Hon. Naluwa Mwene.


I thank you.






The Vice-President (Mrs Wina): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, will arrive at 1025 hours to address the House.


I thank you, Sir.


Business was suspended from 1011 hours until 1036 hours.


The President entered the Assembly Chamber escorted by Mr Speaker.


(Assembly Resumed)


The Clerk read the Proclamation.






The President (Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu): Mr Speaker, I come here today cognisant of the fact that the hope of our nation rests, in greater part, with us, the honourable men and women in this august House. We have the greatest power in our land; the power to determine the destiny of our country, and translate the dreams and hopes of our people into reality; the reality of food on the table of each household, and healthcare and education on the doorstep of every community in a vibrant economy with a place in it for everyone. Yes, we, the people in this House, are the hope of our people. So, we meet on this occasion to mark the Official Opening of the Third Session of the Twelfth National Assembly on the presumption that there is so much to be done and so much to be accomplished, and very little time to waste.


Mr Speaker, during this address, I will share with the nation, through this august House, the ambitious transformational agenda that the Patriotic Front (PF) Government has continued to pursue to make our great country, Zambia, a prosperous middle-income country.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, before I proceed with my address, let me ask the House to join me in observing a minute of silence in honour of the late hon. Members of Parliament for Kasenengwa and Mangango constituencies, Ms Victoria Kalima and Mr Naluwa Mwene, who passed away on 11th June, 2018, and 28th August, 2018, respectively.


Hon. Members of Parliament stood in silence for one minute.


The President: May their souls find eternal rest in the perfect peace of God Almighty.


Thank you. Be seated, please.


Hon. Members of Parliament resumed their seats.


The President: Mr Speaker, during the Second Session of the Twelfth National Assembly, hon. Members debated the Business of the House with deep commitment and in line with our democratic principles. I thank them all for their invaluable contributions.


Mr Speaker, it would be remiss on my part to not express my gratitude to you and your Deputies for the efficient and able manner in which you presided over the Business of the House during the last Session. My gratitude also goes to the Leader of Government Business in the House, Her Honour the Vice-President, for conducting Government Business in the House with utmost decorum and diligence. The Clerk of the National Assembly and her staff also deserve commendation for the invaluable service they continue to render to this House.


Mr Speaker, allow me to take this opportunity to congratulate the new PF hon. Members of Parliament for Chilanga and Kasenengwa constituencies, Mrs Maria Langa and Mr Sensio Banda, respectively.


Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!


The President: I wish to remind the two hon. Members that the people in their constituencies have reposed their utmost trust in them. So, I plead with them to represent their people ably.


Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, let me now go into the details of my address, whose theme is “Working Together to Achieve Vision 2030”.


Mr Nkombo: Question!


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Yes, “Working Together to Achieve Vision 2030”. I am sure we will work together. Regardless of the hon. Member’s reaction, we will work together.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Sir, our vision, as a country, is to become a prosperous middle-income nation by 2030. We aspire to build a strong and dynamic industrial nation that will provide opportunities for improving the wellbeing of all our people and embody the values of socio-economic justice. By 2030, we want to see a Zambia in which every citizen has access to safe and clean water, food, decent housing, electricity, quality education and health services, and decent jobs. In pursuit of this vision, we need to transform into a smart Zambia.  


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: In this regard, we need to adopt modern, dynamic and innovate ways of doing things. We also have to continuously research, learn, and adopt new and better ways of doing business. Equally, we need to be resourceful, efficient and productive in all that we do.


Mr Speaker, the theme of my address builds on our commitment, as the Government, to making Zambia a prosperous nation. The theme is also an affirmation of our abiding belief that Zambia, Africa and the world at large can be better places for all of us if only we work towards achieving common goals. Further, it is in sync with the Government’s development agenda, as contained in the Seventh National Development Plan (7NDP), which is our roadmap to the actualisation of the vision of becoming a prosperous middle-income country by 2030.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: In pursuing this vision, we are mindful that our society is not homogeneous. There are those of our people who struggle to make ends meet and others who are disadvantaged by reason of their gender or by disability. There are also those who feel excluded by virtue of living on the margins of society and having limited access to schools, health facilities and other social amenities. It is for this reason that the Government remains committed to not leaving anyone behind.


Hon. UPND Members: Question!


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, let me assure this august House and the nation at large that the Government means what it says. As the Government, our commitment is to make Zambia a land of opportunity for all; a country on the move to achieving prosperity for all; and a nation determined to secure the future of its people. My party’s manifesto says, “The vision of the Patriotic Front is to make Zambia a more industrious, prosperous, peaceful, stable, united, democratic and inclusive society under the motto of ‘One Zambia One Nation’”. This vision is attainable. To that end, we need to be people who embrace smart technologies and innovations as a way of life, and live up to our national values and principles now, not tomorrow and not in the future.


Mr Speaker, the choice of this year’s theme is further testimony of our commitment to the African Union (AU) Agenda 2063, which calls for the attainment of the Africa we want. The theme also resonates with the aspirations of the United Nations (UN) sustainable development goals, commonly known as SDGs.


Mr Speaker, my address to this august House will focus on the macroeconomic situation, economic diversification and job creation, poverty and vulnerability reduction, reduction of developmental inequalities, enhancement of human development and creation of a conducive governance environment for a diversified and inclusive economy.


Macroeconomic Situation


Mr Speaker, a smart and prosperous Zambia cannot be attained without a strong and growing economy. In this regard, the Government will continue to put emphasis on macroeconomic stability.


Sir, our economy has continued on a positive trajectory, registering a gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate of 3.4 per cent in 2017. In 2018, the GDP growth rate has been projected to be around 4 per cent. The growth in 2018 is being supported by the continued positive performance in the mining, manufacturing and trade sectors, as well as stability in the generation and supply of electricity.


Sir, the kwacha has been resilient, maintaining stability against major convertible currencies. Inflation has also remained within single-digit levels and is expected to close 2018 within the target range of 6 per cent to 8 per cent. This predictable macroeconomic environment is critical for building investor confidence as well as supporting sustainable economic development in the medium to long term.


Mr Speaker, in an effort to address the high lending rates in the country, the Government has also continued to restructure non-performing loan portfolios through the dismantling of domestic arrears. I urge financial institutions to complement the Government’s efforts by lowering lending rates too. This will enable the private sector, especially small and medium enterprises (SMEs), to have easy access to finance and positively contribute to national development.


Mr Speaker, the debt stock and domestic arrears of the country have in the recent past been topical. It should, however, be emphasised that the contraction of the debt was necessary to support our ambitious agenda of laying a solid foundation for the future growth of our economy for the benefit of our people.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: This is being appreciated through the roads, schools and hospitals being constructed, which are critical to our people’s wellbeing. That said, I assure the nation, through this House, that the Government is committed to ensuring a speedy return to a lower risk of debt distress and maintaining the debt within sustainable levels.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Livune: Question!


The President: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister of Finance will soon present to this august House the 2019 National Budget. The Budget will build on the policies outlined in the Economic Stabilisation and Growth Programme and the 7NDP. In this regard, I urge hon. Members of Parliament, particularly those on my left, to take keen interest in understanding and appreciating the details of the 2019 Budget, and to support it when it is presented to the House.


Economic Diversification and Job Creation


Mr Speaker, to attain the Vision 2030, we should be mindful that we must diversify our economy and create jobs. Let me now highlight what the Government has been doing to diversify our economy and create jobs for our people.


Mr Speaker, in the agriculture sector, the Government has continued to focus on increasing production, stepping up the diversification programme, and improving food security and nutrition. To enhance agricultural diversification and promote value addition, the Government is supporting a number of pipeline projects to be implemented over the next two years. These include the Palm Oil Plantation and Processing Project in Muchinga Province and Tea Plantation and Processing Project in Luapula Province. The palm oil project is on course. Through an outgrower scheme, this investment will improve the incomes and livelihoods of about 5,000 beneficiaries of which 30 per cent will be women and youths. The Kawambwa Tea Estate has been revived by the Government and is fully operational. So far, over K30 million has been invested in the estate, resulting in the creation of 500 local jobs. Further, we are facilitating market linkages for farmers with a view to promoting value addition to agricultural produce. In this regard, 900 soya bean farmers have been linked to Global Industries Limited of Ndola, which processes soya beans, and 151 groundnut farmers to Abundant Foods Limited in Kitwe.


Mr Speaker, diversification in agriculture is being further enhanced through the implementation of the Electronic Voucher (e-Voucher) System, which was rolled out to all the districts in the 2017/2018 Farming Season. Of the 804,260 farmers who made the required contribution, 716,161, representing over 80 per cent of the farmers, were able to access inputs.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: The programme also put more money in the pockets of our farmers who also had a wider choice of what to produce. In addition, 5,800 agro-dealers participated in the supply of inputs, which resulted in the creation of over 23,000 jobs for our people.


Mr Mwale: Mwaona manje!


The President: I assure the nation that the Government will continue implementing the e-Voucher System for improved efficiency, transparency and accountability in the administration of the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP).


I have not heard anyone say, “Question!”. I am enjoying this.




The President: Mr Speaker, FISP is not meant to cater for all our farmers. I, therefore, urge the private sector to complement the Government’s effort to make inputs readily available to our farmers countrywide at affordable costs.


Mr Speaker, in the fisheries sub-sector, aquaculture production grew by 61 per cent, from 10,500 metric tonnes between January and June, 2015, to 16,910 metric tonnes over the same period this year. The growth was due to increased production by both commercial and smallholder farmers. To further support aquaculture enterprise development and contribute to increased fish production, the Government is facilitating the development of five outgrower clusters in Bangweulu, Chipepo, Rufunsa, Kasempa and Mungwi.


Mr Speaker, the livestock subsector has continued to show positive growth. For example, from January to June, 2018, the national population of pigs grew by 84.4 per cent, of poultry by 33.1 per cent, of goats by 24.9 per cent, of sheep by 20.2 per cent and of cattle by 12.8 per cent.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: The growth is due to the successful implementation of programmes like livestock stocking and restocking, enhanced disease control, creation of livestock service centres, building of milk collection centres and dip tanks, as well as the creation of bulking centres for animals meant for export. The growth is impacting positively on our economy by improving incomes, food security and nutrition.


Sir, if I do not hear the hon. Members say, “Question!”, I think they are not listening.




The President: Mr Speaker, we have promised our people to make agriculture the mainstay of our economy. The projects and programmes we are implementing are, indeed, our hope for inclusive development. So, let us all direct our efforts towards growing this sector.


Mr Speaker, diversification of the mining sector from copper to other minerals, such as industrial minerals, petroleum and gemstones, is being enhanced. Further, the Government continues to promote value addition in the sector in a bid to create backward and forward linkages with other sectors of the economy. In the area of gemstones and industrial minerals, the Government has continued to prioritise the generation of geological information. In this regard, this year, an additional 0.9 per cent of the country has been geologically and structurally mapped, bringing the total land mapped countrywide to 61 per cent. Geological mapping has contributed to making access to information for prospective investors in the mining sector easier.


Mr Speaker, it is gratifying to note that positive growth supported by favourable prices on the international market, improved grades as well as increased investment has been recorded in copper production. Copper production increased from 371,285 metric tonnes in the first half of 2017 to 410,919 metric tonnes in the same period this year. Further, copper export earnings increased by 22.8 per cent, from US$2.8 billion between January and June, 2017, to US$3.5 billion in the same period in 2018. It is the Government’s policy to see value added to our copper, and that is already happening at the Metal Fabricators of Zambia (ZAMEFA) Plc in Luanshya, Zinc Aluminium Lead Copper Limited (ZALCO) in Kabwe and Neelkanth Cable Limited in Masaiti, which are manufacturing electrical cables. We want to see more value addition to our resources.


Mr Speaker, in the tourism sector, Zambia has the potential to be a tourism hub in the region and beyond. It is in this regard that the Government has prioritised the creation of an enabling environment for growth. In 2017, the sector grew by 6.1 per cent compared with 1.2 per cent in 2016. The growth was spurred by an expanded product base, from reliance on traditional tourism packages of handicrafts, wildlife and the Victoria Falls to the inclusion of heritage sites, meetings and sporting events like the hosting of the Under 20 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), mine tours and cultural events. Medical tourism, enhanced use of electronic marketing (e-Marketing) platforms, increased trade and implementation of the Electronic Visa (e-Visa) were other factors that contributed to the growth of tourism in the country. In a bid to promote safari and photographic tourism, the Government has embarked on the restocking of wildlife. So far, Sioma Ngwezi National Park and Bangweulu Game Management Area (GMA) have been successfully restocked. In addition, seven private game ranches have been restocked. The promotion of wildlife conservancies by our traditional leaders is meant to further enhance the protection of our wildlife stocks.


Sir, to demonstrate the importance of the safari, photographic and filming tourism, I wish to report that the Government raised K111.8 million from the activity in 2017 compared with K110 million in 2016. Further, the Government has recorded increased revenues from the tourism levy which was introduced in 2017. Over K9.5 million was raised in 2017, while K8.8 million was raised between January and July this year. These funds are used to enhance tourism marketing and product promotion as well as to rehabilitate tourism infrastructure.


Mr Speaker, the hon. Members of this august House may recall that the South Luangwa National Park was declared an International Sustainable Wildlife Park by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). The declaration aims at protecting the pristine nature of our game park by ensuring that there is limited human activity allowed therein. Further, the declaration has given Zambia an added selling point for the promotion of its tourism.


Mr Speaker, energy is one of the vital enablers of economic diversification and job creation. In this regard, the Government is committed to facilitating access to clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy for our people. This reinforces our resolve to achieve a smart Zambia. In my previous Address to this House, the Government’s commitment to making Zambia attain the status of being a net exporter of electricity was made very loudly and clearly. Following the various investments in the electricity subsector, our current installed capacity stands at 2,878 MW against the target of 3,746 MW by 2021. This has reduced load-shedding and increased productivity across industries.


Can I hear “Question!”.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Sir, my interaction with young people running welding workshops, hair salons and chicken runs assures me that there are no more concerns regarding power supply, and that this has helped to stabilise their businesses and incomes. This is what we mean by putting more money in our people’s pockets.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Currently, access to electricity stands at a national average of 31 per cent. This is unacceptable. Therefore, I direct the hon. Minister of Energy to do more to ensure more access to electricity by our population countrywide.


Mr Speaker, the Government is making steady progress towards meeting the growing demand for electricity which is expected to reach the peak of 3,000 MW by 2021. Projects that provide a mix of electricity generation, such as Phase II of the 300 MW Maamba Coal-Fired Plant and the Lusiwasi Lower Hydropower Project, which is uprating the plant from 12 MW to 86 MW, are being implemented. Others are the 340 MW EMCO Coal-Fired Plant in Sinazongwe, the 750 MW Kafue Gorge Lower Hydropower Station and the 900 MW Luapula Hydro Power Scheme, in the medium term, and the 2,400 MW Batoka Hydropower Project, in the long term. EMCO Coal-Fired Plant, Kafue Gorge Lower Hydropower Station and Luapula Hydropower Scheme will be on-grid very soon. Batoka Hydropower Project is a long-term and bigger project. We have to wait for it to be implemented, but we are on course.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


His Excellency the President: I am yearning to hear, “Question!”, but it is not coming forth.




Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, let us renew our pledge to improve the energy sector, build an energy sector that will support our economy and participate in shaping the Zambia we want to have by 2030.


Mr Speaker, the Government is committed to facilitating trade and industrialisation as part of the diversification of the economy. In this regard, we are implementing the National Industrialisation and National Trade policies. The National Trade Policy aims at promoting and stimulating a competitive trade sector while the National Industrial Policy aims at transforming Zambia from a producer and exporter of primary products to a net exporter of valued-added goods. Further, the Industrialisation Policy encourages the utilisation of local primary resources and increased citizen participation. This policy measure will encourage the uptake of our local innovations and home-grown solutions in the growth and development of enterprises, with the spin-off effects of enhanced job and income generation opportunities, especially for our young people.


Mr Chaatila: Question!


The President: Sir, the favourable policies of the Government are facilitating private sector investment in the country. This year alone, a number of companies have come on board. These include the new US$500 million cement plant in Chongwe District, which has created 1,000 jobs; a US$35 million first-ever tile manufacturing plant in Lusaka, which has created 150 jobs, as well as the US$20 million Aquaculture Investment Plant in Siavonga District, which has employed over 600 people.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: This is proof that favourable policies are in place and people are being attracted to invest in Zambia. The aquaculture plant in the Southern Province is also providing a market for maize, wheat and soya beans farmers. Other investments are Foresticol Fertiliser Zambia Limited in Kabwe which, so far, has employed over 200 people, and the Zambia Fertilisers Manufacturing Plant in the Lusaka South Multi-Facility Economic Zone (MFEZ) which has created 300 jobs. The US$850 million investment by China Non-Ferrous Metals (CNFM) at the South Ore Deep Mining Project in Kalulushi has resulted in the creation of over 1,000 jobs for our people.


Hon. UNPD Members: Question!


The President: In answer to your “Question!”, I would like to repeat that the US$850 million investment by CNFM at the South Ore Deep Mining Project in Kalulushi has resulted in the creation of over 1,000 jobs for our people.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Hear, hear! “Question!”, indeed.


Sir, all of the investments make use of local raw materials and create jobs for our people. I am confident that we will see a lot more investments because of the favourable policies we have put in place.


Sir, I will answer the questions later.


Mr Speaker, in the transport sector, the implementation of the Link Zambia 8,000 Kilometre Road Project is ongoing. So far, the construction of 5,000 km is at various stages of implementation across the country. These include the Kitwe/Chingola Dual Carriageway, the Mumbwa/Itezhi-tezhi Road, the Kawambwa/Mushota Road, the Chama/Matumbo Road and the Pedicle Road. This project has created over 6,000 jobs since inception.


Mr Speaker, works have been completed on some of the roads, such as the Mbala/Nakonde Road, the Luangwa Bridge/Feira Road, the Bottom Road from Njami to Munyumbwe and the Mongu/Kalabo Road. Our people appreciate the construction of those roads in their respective areas, as the roads have reduced travelling time and vehicle maintenance costs, as well as increased access to markets.


Mr Mwale: Ndiye ma Boma, aya!


The President: Most of you in this august House, despite the questions being raised, can attest to this reality. This is truly putting money in our people’s pockets.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, the construction of the new terminal at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (KKIA) in Lusaka is progressing well, and now stands at above 75 per cent completion, compared with the 52 per cent I reported last year. The works are expected to be completed in 2019. Further, the construction of the Copperbelt International Airport on the Copperbelt has also commenced and works are at 13 per cent. Completion is expected in three years. Once completed, the two airports will boost tourism, trade, employment and service delivery to our people.


Mr Speaker, in our desire to promote a smart Zambia and achieve universal coverage in telecommunications countrywide, the Government has commenced the installation of communication towers under Phase II of the Telecommunication Towers Project. So far, 318 out of 1,009 towers have been erected, including in Dundumwezi.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!




The President: We expect all the towers to be erected by 2021. Once completed, the project is expected to improve network coverage from the current 84 per cent to 95 per cent of the country. The increased network coverage arising from the construction of the towers is promoting the use of electronic platforms by a larger population as well as enhancing efficiency in business and Government transactions. Using the mobile payment system, our grandmother, Belita, in Jumbe is now able to access money in real time to assist her take maize to the nearest hammer mill. Mr Silumesi in Shang’ombo is also able to quickly buy veterinary medicine to vaccinate his animals, thanks to this service.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear! Boma!


Mr Livune: Question!


The President: Mr Speaker, we have made progress in rolling out the Digital Migration Programme. In this regard, fifty-five out of sixty-three digital broadcasting transmission sites have been commissioned throughout the country. This has improved access to digital television services throughout the country. At the recent Zambia Agricultural and Commercial Show in Lusaka, I had the privilege of seeing the state-of-the-art outside broadcasting (OB) vans for the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC), which are part of the greater success story of our Digital Migration Programme. Today, all of us can attest to the clear picture we now enjoy on our local television services.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, in line with our policy of encouraging production of local content and job creation in the creative industry, we have seen an increase in the number of local productions, which are being aired on local television stations as well as international television networks like MultiChoice and Kwese. I am glad to note that Zambia has been chosen as a regional centre for the training of producers, script writers and actors, which will benefit most of our young people who cannot afford to train abroad.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, the Government, with the support of the Government of the People’s Republic of China, is also rolling out a project dubbed “Access to Satellite Television by 10,000 African Villages”. Through this project, 500 selected villages in Zambia will be connected to satellite television. This is another practical benefit of our Digital Migration Programme.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: The project has already been launched in the Eastern Province, Western Province and Luapula Province, and will be rolled out to the rest of the country by March, 2019. For our people, this is not a promissory note. It is already a reality at schools like Kefulwa, Kabuta and Kanyembo in Luapula Province, and some selected villages around the schools. Mr Charles Tembo of Kawaza Compound in Sinda District recently spoke for many when he said:


“Being able to watch TV in my thatched house is like a dream come true. I am now able to see what is happening in other parts of the country and follow programmes that educate me on modern farming methods and how to improve my yields.”


If that is not progress, then, I do not know what is.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: This is the kind of empowerment of our citizens that the Government wants to see by taking information to where our people are. Access to information must not be a privilege for a few. It is as much a human right as the right to safe and clean drinking water or affordable healthcare. We are, indeed, moving towards a smart Zambia.


Poverty and Vulnerability Reduction


Mr Speaker, let me address the issue of poverty and vulnerability reduction.


Sir, the Social Cash Transfer (SCT) Programme has proved to be effective in contributing to poverty reduction as well as income redistribution, especially in the rural communities where poverty levels are very high.


Mr Chabi: Question!


The President: The programme is being scaled up to reach 700,000 beneficiary households countrywide by the end of this year. Currently, 632,020 households are benefiting.


To ensure food security for vulnerable, but viable poor households, the Government will, in the 2018/2019 Farming Season, increase the coverage of the Food Security Pack (FSP) Programme from the 27,650 beneficiaries in the previous farming season to 80,000.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: The 27,650 farmers are expected to produce 41,475 metric tonnes of maize and 706 metric tonnes of legumes.


Mr Speaker, through the Girl’s Education and Women’s Empowerment and Livelihood (GEWEL) Project, the Government is supporting vulnerable women and girls. In 2017, 12,445 vulnerable women in eleven districts were empowered with life and business skills as well as grants of K2,000 each. By the end of this year, an additional 21,000 women in thirty-one districts will be supported. Further, the Government is supporting 15,082 girls aged between fourteen and eighteen to be retained in school under the programme.


Mr Speaker, the Government is equally committed to the promotion of the rights of persons with disabilities. In this regard, we have continued to mainstream disability in all our programmes. For instance, we are promoting the inclusion of sign language and braille in our various institutions. The expanded use of ramps and elevators in public buildings is also part of our effort to include people living with disabilities. We have also waived duty on the importation of modified vehicles for persons with disabilities.


Sir, I said that we have also waived duty on the importation of modified vehicles for persons with disabilities.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: I, therefore, call upon the private sector, faith-based organisations (FBOs), the civil society and everybody else to also mainstream disability in all their programmes.


Mr Speaker, I am happy to inform this august House that the Youth Resettlement Programme, which started at the former Mwange Refugee Camp in Mporokoso District of the Northern Province, is doing well. As at 30th June, 2018, 230 youths had been resettled at the centre and were involved in various economic activities that included crop production and animal husbandry. The good news is that the centre emerged as the best agricultural camp in the Northern Province in the 2017/2018 Farming Season. 


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: This is a clear demonstration of the fact that given the necessary support, the youth are capable of being productive and being at the centre of driving our economic diversification agenda. I, therefore, urge them to take advantage of the resettlement programme to improve their lives.


Mr Speaker, to further promote our inclusive agenda, the Government has extended social security coverage to the informal sector through the National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA). The pension scheme now covers domestic workers, bus and taxi drivers, artistes, marketeers, traders and small-scale farmers. In this regard, I urge our people in the informal sector to join the available social security programmes to avoid destitution in old age. Further, I encourage our people to take up insurance policies to cover their business ventures and their lives in the event of calamities. We all need to assist in educating our people on the importance and benefits of taking up these policies. Indeed, there is hope for everyone when we do the right thing.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: There is hope for everyone when we do the right thing.


Hon. Member: Question!


Reducing Development Inequalities


Mr Speaker, let me address the issue of reducing development inequalities.


Sir, our country has disturbing statistics on inequality. This situation challenges us to double our efforts to bridge the inequality gap. The continuation of the implementation of the necessary policy interventions in the critical sectors of education, health, agriculture, energy, communication, water, sanitation, roads and other economic and social sectors is key. This includes implementing programmes aimed at taking development to rural areas, which is being done through, but not limited to, the establishment of new districts in rural areas and promotion of industrialisation across the length and breadth of our country. When I used to sit here as a Member of Parliament, the issue of the creation of districts arose and some people said there was an outbreak of districts. They mocked us. Now, every hon. Member is clamouring for a new district. We will give you those districts; do not worry.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, to reduce higher income inequalities, the Government is supporting investments in rural areas through the promotion of value chain development. To derive maximum benefits from the sector-specific interventions aimed at bridging the inequality gap, the Government is encouraging local communities to form co-operatives. This will help to integrate the communities into various value chains. Among the value chains using the co-operative model is the Cashew Nut Project in the Western Province and the cassava value chain in the North-Western Province and Luapula Province.


Mr Speaker, to enhance the welfare of the majority of Zambians, we will continue with investments in the development of socio-economic infrastructure, such as roads, schools and hospitals. This will secure equitable distribution of the benefits of economic growth. Our resolve in this direction is attested to by the various projects being implemented throughout Zambia.


Mr Speaker, to provide easy access to markets for the farming community in the hard-to-reach areas, we have prioritised the rehabilitation and maintenance of primary feeder road networks. This will mitigate the perennial post-harvest crop losses suffered by our farmers.


Mr Speaker, it appears that development inequality, unfortunately, has a female face. This is because women and girls continue to bear an unequal burden of poverty, and face challenges in accessing justice and social and economic opportunities. This is exacerbated by some deep-rooted cultural and traditional practices that promote male dominance and subordination of women and girls. I hope that the new hon. Minister of Gender will work hard to ensure that the cultural and traditional practices that inhibit our female partners from achieving economic prosperity are rooted out completely. Our people are made to believe that it is better to have a son than to have a daughter, but I think we should realise that a daughter is as good as a son. After all, there are many women who have been more successful than men.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: The Government is, therefore, committed to promoting gender equality. The former United Nations (UN) Secretary-General, the late Mr Kofi Annan, may his soul rest in peace, was right to say that:


“Gender equality is more than a goal in itself. It is a precondition for meeting the challenges of reducing poverty, promoting sustainable development and building good governance.”


In this regard –


Mr Nkombo: End of quote.


The President: Yes, end of quote.


Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!


The President: So you are listening. Thank you.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: In this regard, the Government is implementing multi-pronged strategies that tackle the root causes of gender inequality, such as access to education, health, nutrition and justice. We are also working with traditional authorities to promote gender equality, as most inequalities affect rural women and girls.


Enhancing Human Development


Mr Speaker, in pursuit of our desire to attain our ambitious Vision 2030, we have continued to set and pursue clear priorities in the health and education sectors in response to the rising expectations of our people and rapid technological changes. In the tertiary education subsector, the Government has operationalised the Robert Kapasa Makasa, Kwame Nkrumah, Mukuba and Chalimbana universities for increased access to education. Further, the construction of Frederick Titus Jacob Chiluba University in Mansa, King Lewanika University in Mongu and Kasama University in Kasama has commenced.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: These universities, once completed, will provide more than 4,000 additional learning places.


Mr Speaker, access to equitable and inclusive education has been enhanced. Student enrolment in public universities stood at 58,442 in 2017, compared with 49,236 in 2016. The enrolment of female students also increased from 21,373 in 2016 to 26,845 in 2017. The number of students enrolled in Technical Education, Vocational and Entrepreneurship Training (TEVET) institutions also increased from 36,575 in 2016 to 39,802 in 2017. The number of female students enrolled in 2017 was 11,669, compared with 9,958 in 2016. Construction of seven TEVET institutions, namely Isoka, Kalabo, Sesheke, Mporokoso, Mumbwa, Lundazi and Mwense, is progressing well and nearing completion.


Mr Speaker, I have been following with keen interest the advancement of some of the people graduating from our trades training institutions and youth resource centres located in various parts of the country. Some have become successful employers of fellow youths, and such is the story of Fredson Kasongo, a former student of Mufumbwe Youth Resource Centre, who is now a contractor in Solwezi and has employed 360 workers.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: There is also the story of Carol Lubemba, a former student of Lusaka Youth Resource Centre, who now runs a restaurant and has employed six workers on a permanent basis. These youths are a shining example of what can happen when a young person is given a skill.


Mr Speaker, effective regulation –




The President: Yes, it is happening. You just want to be employed by the Government.


Mr Speaker, effective regulation is critical to ensuring the provision of quality tertiary education. To that effect, the Government is reviewing the Higher Education Policy and the TEVET Policy to provide a framework for assuring quality in tertiary education.


Mr Speaker, the Government has continued to provide loans and scholarships to learners at all levels of our education system. In 2017, 25,128 university and TEVET students were supported under the Loans and Scholarships Board, the TEVET Bursary, the Skills Development Fund and the Support to Science and Technology Projects. The Skills Development Fund has also been instrumental in financing the review of over seventy-nine curricula in the last year to align them to industry and the national diversification agenda.


Mr Speaker, in the area of science and technology, we are making progress towards the establishment of the Centre for Nuclear Science and Technology. The centre is not a nuclear power plant, please, but a centre for research in nuclear science and technology. Once operational, the centre will contribute to enhanced treatment of cancer, irradiation of certain agricultural and mineral products for export as well as being put to other industrial uses. The project will also create a centre of excellence that will contribute to academic tourism as well as create jobs. I am saying this because there is so much mystery about nuclear science. In this regard, the centre will contribute to improved revenues realised from exports, and make Zambia a nuclear science regional hub. To facilitate the seamless running of the centre by Zambians, a number of young Zambians are already undergoing training in nuclear science and research. This effort is part of our agenda to achieve a smart Zambia as we move towards attaining our Vision 2030.


Mr Speaker, in general education, 3,148 teachers were recruited and deployed to schools across the country in 2017 as part of our target of 55,000 teachers over the next ten years. Additionally, 2,000 teachers will be recruited before the end of this year.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Further, 2,939 teachers are being supported to upgrade their qualifications under the Fast-Track Teacher Education Programme. 


Mr Speaker, to meet the increasing demand for secondary school education, the Government is building new secondary schools and upgrading primary schools in needy areas. Of the 115 schools under the project, sixty-two have been completed. In addition, eighty-two secondary schools are being constructed through community participation. Further, 1,155 community schools were upgraded to primary schools in 2017. In addition, 477 primary schools were upgraded to secondary schools.




Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, the provision of quality education remains important to the Government. In this regard, the Teaching Council of Zambia (TCZ) is ensuring that only qualified teachers are engaged to teach in our schools. Further, the Government is working towards bringing the teacher-pupil ratio to the acceptable standard of 1:40 and 1:35 for primary and secondary schools, respectively.


Mr Speaker, let me now turn to the health sector.


Sir, we have continued to record remarkable success in primary health care. In this connection, immunisation coverage increased from 92 per cent in 2017 to 94 per cent in the first quarter of this year. The national out-turn in institutional maternal deaths reduced to 138 deaths per 100,000 live births in 2017, from 149 deaths per 100,000 live births in 2016. The benefits of these interventions are evident in the lives that have been saved.


Mr Speaker, the Government is determined to make Zambia malaria-free. The interventions being made include indoor residual spraying and mass distribution of long-lasting insecticide-treated mosquito nets. The total number of people protected through indoor residual spraying increased from 6.7 million in 2016 to 7.8 million in 2017, while 10.1 million mosquito nets were distributed during the 2017/2018 mass distribution exercise.


Mr Speaker, the universal routine Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) testing – I am glad that the controversy over this has settled. When I declared that HIV testing would be universal, there was an uproar.


Sir, universal routine HIV testing, counselling and treatment, which I launched last year, has resulted in a 20 per cent increase in HIV testing uptake and 4 per cent increase in treatment uptake, while the tuberculosis treatment success rate increased to 89 per cent by 2017. This is improving the quality of life and averting preventable deaths among our people. I note, with concern, however, that our young people have been left behind. Whereas we have reached over 80 per cent of adults in need of anti-retroviral therapy (ART), we have only reached half of our young people. It is our duty to encourage our young people to access these services.


Mr Speaker, to bring medicines closer to where they are needed and to avoid wastage in the central storage facilities, the Government is constructing medicine storage facilities. I am pleased to inform this august House that the Chipata, Choma, Mongu and Ndola hubs are now operational. Other storage hubs are under construction in strategic regions across the country. Very soon, Mansa and Mpika will come on board. Further, Medical Stores Limited (MSL) is being upgraded to a state-of-the-art warehousing facility for pharmaceutical management.


Mr Speaker, the Government has continued to address the shortage of health personnel at all levels of care. In this regard, 15,376 health personnel were recruited and deployed to various health facilities countrywide between 2016 and this year. Special attention has been paid to the recruitment of medical doctors, nurses and midwives. We will continue to work towards achieving the target of recruiting 30,000 health workers by 2021 and ensuring that all health facilities have an appropriate and adequate staff mix deployed to offer quality health services to our people.


Mr Speaker, to ensure the availability of skilled health personnel, the Government has established the Levy Mwanawasa Teaching Hospital and embarked on its upgrading to a strategic national training hub. Further, Ndola Central Hospital has been upgraded to a university teaching hospital. This has added more learning places to those available at the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) in Lusaka. This will also create increased opportunities for medical and academic tourism.


Did I hear “Question!”?


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: The Government has also commenced a specialist training programme for health workers in oncology, public health and trauma, among other fields. Currently, 215 doctors are already in training against a target of 500 specialists by 2021. This training is being offered at various institutions within the country, such as at the UTH, Ndola Teaching Hospital, Livingstone Teaching Hospital and Kitwe Teaching Hospital.


Mr Speaker, clean and safe drinking water is an essential part of human development.


Hon. Opposition Members:Wora”?


The President: Yes, wora.




The President: Hence, we have targeted to increase access to clean and safe drinking water from the current 65 per cent to 85 per cent, and access to sanitation from 25 per cent to 30 per cent by 2021. The attainment of these targets will be necessary building blocks for the realisation of our Vision 2030. Accordingly, a number of infrastructure development projects are under implementation in all the ten provinces of our country. These include Lusaka Water Supply, Sanitation and Drainage Project; Lusaka Sanitation Programme; Kazungula Emergency Water Supply Project in Matinangala; Mufumbwe Water Supply Project; Mwandi Water Supply Project; Kafubu Water and Sewerage Programme; New Serenje Water Supply and Sanitation Programme; and Water Supply and Sanitation Project in Nyimba East. Under Phase I of the Six Towns Water Project, Kawambwa and Mansa were covered while Phase II of the project will cover Mpika, Mbala and Kasama.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: We have also continued to improve access to safe and clean drinking water in rural areas through the construction of boreholes and water points. This year alone, 735 boreholes have been constructed in the Eastern Province, Southern Province, Western Province and Northern Province.


Mr Speaker, our people need more than hope in the area of human development. They need the services of their Government, and that is what we are delivering.


Hon. Opposition Members: Question!


The President: Those who do not travel will always raise questions.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Creating a Conducive Governance Environment for a Diversified and Inclusive Economy


The President: Mr Speaker, a conducive governance environment centred on transparency and accountability, including a democratic system of governance, the rule of law, human rights and constitutionalism, are imperative to any nation. Let me share with the House the progress made so far and the outlook in this area because there was a “Question!”.


In line with our Vision 2030 and our quest to achieve a smart Zambia, the Government is modernising the Public Service. In this regard, we have made progress in the implementation of the Electronic (e-) Government System. An electronic (e-) payment system for the Public Service has since been introduced to enhance transparency and minimise leakages in the collection of non-tax revenues. For instance, the implementation of the Online Consolidated Immigration System has resulted in improved revenues of over US$1 million within five months of its introduction. In addition, the system has reduced the cost and time of doing business. Further, the Government has fully implemented the Electronic (e-) Cabinet System in all the twenty-nine ministries and ten provincial administration offices. This has resulted in over 85 per cent cost-saving for the Government. This innovation is also contributing to the promotion of a green economy. In addition, the introduction of the Government wide area network (WAN) has resulted in a reduction in payments for Internet services from K62 million to K28 million. Therefore, a saving of K34 million was made. The Government has also implemented an electronic (e-) payslip system, which has resulted in savings of K72 million since its introduction in August, last year. In 2019, the Government plans to implement an Electronic (e-) Parliament system to enhance the interface between the Legislature and the Executive.




The President: Yes, Mr Speaker, I am saying that in 2019, the Government plans to implement an e-Parliament system to enhance the interface between the Legislature and the Executive.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, the Government has expanded the establishment of the Office of the Auditor-General in order to enable it to discharge its constitutional mandate which includes the auditing of local authorities’ accounts. That will strengthen transparency and accountability in view of the devolution of functions to the local authorities.


Mr Speaker, the fight against corruption remains a priority of this Government.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Hon. Opposition Members: Question!


The President: The fight against corruption remains a priority of this Government. To that end, a review of the National Anti-Corruption Policy of 2009 has been undertaken. The new policy to be developed will address corruption in a holistic manner at three levels, namely legal, institutional and social. This approach will entail collective action from citizens, and the private and public sectors to promote integrity and transparency in our affairs. It will also require the strengthening of existing institutional and legal frameworks. I, therefore, call upon all of us to support the implementation of the new policy once it is developed.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: We all have a patriotic duty to not just express outrage against corruption, but also to do more to combat the scourge. However, corruption must be fought in a very honest manner devoid of narrow and selfish interests calculated to malign others simply because one has the platform on which to do so. The fight against corruption must be prosecuted with noble intentions to make our society better. The screaming headlines of corruption propaganda may succeed to malign someone, but they achieve nothing in uplifting the lives of the poor and indigent people in our society;  ...


Hon. Opposition Members: Question!


The President: ... the very people we have sworn to serve and protect. Let us, therefore, come to the common position that the scourge of corruption is not just criminal, but morally reprehensible. So, let us agree on a genuine legal and awareness response to the problem, not the often baseless name-calling that adds nothing to the crusade, but simply polarises our society between the accused and the accuser. Let us focus on a broad-based national agenda that speaks to the interests of all Zambians. Victory in any national crusade does not necessarily mean defeat of one section of our society. In this regard, victory can only be achieved through a collectively-desired goal that benefits the majority of our people. The fight against corruption should be motivated by noble intentions.


Mr Speaker, in our desire to achieve the transformational agenda, the Government has continued to realign its institutions among other strategies. The realignment is aimed at improving business operations, enhancing service delivery and bringing about greater participation of our people in decision-making. In this respect, the Government is making steady progress in the implementation of the National Decentralisation Policy. The objective of the policy is to devolve some Central Government functions with the matching resources to the local authorities. So far, functions like the provision of primary education, community development, agriculture extension services and primary health care have been devolved to local authorities. Further, the issuance of birth and death certificates has been decentralised to most of the local authorities. This means that our people do not need to travel to provincial centres to process these documents, thereby saving money on travelling as well as time for other productive engagements.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: The transfer of personnel from the respective service commissions to local authorities has commenced with Chibombo District.


Mr Speaker, excellence in service delivery should be the hallmark of decentralisation. I, therefore, expect every public servant, from a doctor, nurse and porter at Choma General Hospital; a registration officer in Lukulu District; a teacher in Kabompo; a pontoon operator in Kazungula; an agriculture extension officer in Ikeleng’i; to a constable at Kanyama Police Post, to uphold the highest standards and ethics in the performance of their duties.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, in our quest to promote a culture of tolerance and national unity, the Government has continued to engage political parties and other stakeholders. These engagements have begun to yield some positive results, with political youth leaders agreeing that there is more that binds us together as Zambians than what divides us.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: This is in line with our ideals as a Christian nation and, indeed, our national values and principles. The Government remains committed to amending the Public Order Act, Chapter 113 of the Laws of Zambia, and I look forward to that being done soon. I urge all those who have contributions to come on board and make them instead of just shouting from rooftops.


Mr Speaker, to improve service delivery in the area of justice, the Government will implement an automated caseflow management system. The system will link the Zambia Police Service, National Prosecution Authority, Judiciary, Legal Aid Board and Zambia Correctional Services.  It is envisaged that the system will make a significant contribution towards addressing challenges in dispensing justice. These include loss of case records and backlogs as well as congestion in correctional facilities. The caseflow management system will also enhance efficiency and improve transparency. The Government is also collaborating with the private sector to construct new and modern correctional facilities to address overcrowding of inmates. The construction of two correctional facilities under a public-private partnership (PPP) in Mwembezhi, with a holding capacity of 3,200 inmates, has reached 70 per cent completion and is expected to be completed by the end of 2019.


Mr Speaker, we cannot discuss the strengthening of our governance system without referring to our national values and principles. In this regard, the Government is continuing to integrate the national values and principles into the development agenda and provision of services. I urge all stakeholders at the community, district, provincial and national levels to take the necessary steps to integrate our national values and principles in all aspects of life.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, in international diplomacy, Zambia has continued to play a leading role in the Southern African Development Community (SADC), Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and African Union (AU). For example, we have assumed the Chair of the SADC Troika Organ on Politics, Defence and Security. This implies that Zambia will, once again, play a leading role in promoting political stability in the region. Further, most meetings of the organ will be held in our country, Zambia. Therefore, as Zambians, we need to stand together to benefit in the area of conference tourism from this role that Zambia is playing in international politics.


Mr Speaker, the Government is also actively engaging with its bilateral partners in the region and beyond. The areas of co-operation include agriculture, fisheries, livestock, tourism, science and technology, innovation, foreign direct investment, entrepreneurship and partnerships among private sector players. We expect these bilateral relationships to yield tangible results like the Lusaka Road Decongestion Project, Lusaka Cardiac Specialist Hospital and King Salman Women and Children’s Specialist Hospital which are underway. These projects have arisen from our engagement with the international community through our diplomacy. So, Zambia is not isolated as some people want to believe. 


Mr Speaker, Zambia was among the forty-three African countries that signed the Kigali Declaration on 21st March, 2018, and the declaration will culminate into the operationalisation of the AU Continental Free Trade Area. The free trade area will be the largest trading bloc in the world, bringing together fifty-five countries with a combined population of about 1.2 billion people and a combined gross domestic product (GDP) of US$3.4 trillion. So, we expect Zambia, through international connectivity and dialogue, to benefit from all these arrangements. To benefit from the free trade area agreement, we need to accelerate our industrialisation in order to have a share in the export market. We also need to conform to local and international quality standards as well as strictly enforce compliance with compulsory standards on both imports and exports. In addition, buying Zambian products will strengthen our industries to compete at the continental level.


Mr Speaker, I promised to answer some of the questions that were being raised by the people who were saying “Question!”.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, as an independent State, Zambia creates and keeps cordial relationships with its friends in the broader international community of nations. These relationships are based on mutual bilateral and multilateral considerations informed by common goals of making better the lives of our people. In this regard, our right to choose our friendship with one nation is not dependent on making enemies with others.


The President: I want to emphasise this: Our right to choose our friendship with one nation is not dependent on making enemies with others.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: We shall choose our own friends on our own terms, and that does not mean appeasing anyone with unjustified enmity with others.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Our friendship with China is mutual, and no amount of reckless propaganda will deter us from entrenching this relationship for the common good of our people.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: We are proud of our friendship with China, Europe, America and India. We are proud of our friendships within the AU, SADC, COMESA and with other individual countries.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: I, therefore, implore you, countrymen and women, to ignore the misleading headlines that seek to malign our relationship with China by mischaracterising our economic co-operation to mean colonialism. China does not have that record. Neither does it seek a horse-and-rider relationship with Zambia.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: We are fully conscious, as a nation, of the fact that we need to uplift the plight of our people. I want to emphasise that all forms of bilateral co-operation with China are and will always be informed by the noble focus on the need to build supporting infrastructure to enable our people to build sound and sustainable livelihoods.




Mr Speaker, let me conclude.


In the course of this address, I have outlined what the Government has done and is doing to advance our development agenda, especially in the areas of macroeconomic stabilisation, socioeconomic infrastructure, human capital, and poverty and vulnerability reduction. I have also highlighted the progress we are making in the areas of enterprise development and industrialisation. These measures are key to the attainment of the Vision 2030. I believe that this development trajectory cannot be easily sustained without a keen sense of patriotism and inclusion of everyone. I call upon every citizen to continue building on this firm foundation and make their contributions to making a smart Zambia a reality as well as creating a better future for all Zambians by 2030. We want a Zambia which posterity will be proud of; a Zambia that will be a beacon of prosperity in Africa and a Zambia that will be admired not only by Africa, but by the whole world. 


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, we must remain united if we are to sustain the gains we have achieved so far.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: To foster that unity, let us continue to dialogue with one another. It is only through dialogue that we will resolve our issues and focus our energies on development matters.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: I, therefore, commend all the political players who have shown a commitment to the process of dialogue as well as to ending political violence.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Mr Speaker, as we strive towards achieving the Vision 2030, we must not forget the importance of good morals and ethics. Let us renew our pledge to uphold our national values and principles for a better Zambia.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President: Let us build a Zambia that will leave a lasting mark on the world. Further, in all our endeavours, we must look to God our Creator for wisdom, guidance and strength as we execute our development plans. Together, with a positive attitude, we shall succeed. Together, with a positive work culture, we must progress. Together, with a positive approach, we will strive to achieve.


Mr Speaker, it is now my honour and privilege to declare the Third Session of the Twelfth National Assembly officially open. May God bless all of us and may He bless our great nation, Zambia.


I thank you, Sir.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


The President left the Assembly Chamber.


Mr Speaker took the Chair.








The Vice-President (Mrs Wina): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that at its rising today, the House do adjourn until Tuesday, 18th September, 2018.


Sir, may I begin by expressing, on behalf of this House and, indeed, on my own behalf, sincere gratitude to His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, for providing policy guidelines to the Government in 2019.


Mr Speaker, the President has raised a number of important issues that need careful analysis by all of us. The President’s message is very clear in setting the tone for the economic development that the country will pursue in 2019.


Hon. Opposition Members: Question!


The Vice-President: These issues deserve the House’s serious examination. In this regard, I am of the view that the House should rise now so that hon. Members are given ample time to analyse the speech and reflect on the important issues that His Excellency the President has raised. In this way, the House will be able to make reasoned contributions during the debate on the Motion of Thanks, starting on Tuesday, 18th September, 2018.


Mr Speaker, this is a very straightforward Motion. So, I request the hon. Members of this august House to support it.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr D. Mumba (Chama North): Mr Speaker, allow me to put on record my sincere gratitude for the rare opportunity accorded me to speak first on this important Motion moved by Her Honour the Vice-President on the occasion of the Official Opening of the Third Session of the Twelfth National Assembly.


Sir, I agree with Her Honour the Vice-President that hon. Members need time to digest and carefully analyse the speech that has just been delivered by His Excellency the President of this great Republic, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr D. Mumba: The adjournment is, indeed, necessary because hon. Members need ample time to critically analyse the speech and come back to the House next week fully prepared to debate meaningfully the various issues that have been highlighted in the President’s Speech.


Mr Speaker, I fully support the Motion and urge my colleagues to do the same.


I thank you, Sir.


The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I am thankful to all hon. Members for the unanimous support for the Motion.


I thank you, Sir.


Question put and agreed to.




The Vice-President: Mr Speaker, I beg to move that the house do now adjourn.


Question put and greed to.




The House adjourned at 1206 hours until 1430 hours on Tuesday, 18th September, 2018.