Wednesday, 7th October, 2020

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Wednesday, 7th October, 2020


The House met at 1430 hours


[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]












Mr Speaker: Hon. Members will recall that on Wednesday, 30th September, 2020, Hon. M. Kafwaya, Minister of Transport and Communication, presented a ministerial statement on the 2020/2021 Rainy Season Forecast. Following the presentation of the statement, and as Ms C. Kasanda, hon. Member of Parliament for Chisamba Parliamentary Constituency, was about to ask a question, Mr J. J. Mwiimbu, hon. Member of Parliament for Monze Central Parliamentary Constituency and Leader of the Opposition, raised the following point of order:


“Mr Speaker, I have noted that for the last two days, we have been having challenges with the Electronic-Chamber (e-Chamber) System. Thus, we cannot access the proceedings using the system.


Mr Speaker, I just want your advice on this particular matter. Why should we, hon. Members who are in this House, be advised to use Zoom Video Communications (Zoom) when the local system which we have been using is still functioning? Why can those of us who are in the Chamber not use the system which we are used to if the other systems are not functioning?


Sir, I am failing to log in because of what is happening, and so, I need your guidance on this matter.”


In my immediate response, I reserved my ruling. I have studied the matter and I am now ready to render my ruling.


Hon. Members, I would like to state, from the outset, that the complaint raised in the point of order has been raised previously by hon. Members. Therefore, I wish to seize this opportunity to provide guidance on this matter.


Hon. Members, currently, the sitting of the House is being conducted under a Hybrid System, as provided under Standing Order 4 of the National Assembly of Zambia (Coronavirus Disease 2019) Temporary Standing Orders, 2020. Standing Order 4 is expressed in the following terms:


“Manner of Sitting


  1. During the Coronavirus period, the House may meet physically, virtually or a combination of physical and virtual methods as determined by the House Business Committee.
  2. Where the House Business Committee determines that the House meets partly physically and partly virtually, the Speaker, in consultation with the leaders of political parties, shall decide which members to attend a sitting physically in the Chamber and which members to attend virtually in designated rooms within the precincts of the Assembly or in other places outside the precincts of the Assembly.
  3. A member shall be at liberty to virtually attend a sitting of the House from any place outside the precincts of the Assembly with good internet connectivity.
  4. Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary, a Minister or Backbencher who has an item of business on the Order Paper for a particular day shall sit in the Chamber on that day.
  5. A presiding officer shall chair a sitting of the Assembly from the Chamber.”


The foregoing Standing Order clearly provides for sittings of the House to be held using a Hybrid System comprising physical and virtual meetings. The adoption of a Hybrid System by the National Assembly has necessitated the use of a combination of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) comprising the following:


  1. the Bosch Communication System;
  2. Zoom platform; and
  3. e-Chamber.


The Bosch Communication System


The Bosch Communication System is installed in the Chamber and Committee Rooms. It has been in use for several years now. It allows hon. Members to perform a variety of functions, including logging in, indicating to speak, voting and debating.


Zoom Platform


Zoom is an application designed for virtual meetings. It allows hon. Members to log in and it automatically generates a list of hon. Members who are logged in. It has an audio and video feature, which enables hon. Members to speak and to be seen. It further has a function that allows hon. Members to raise their hands in order to indicate to speak. However, the raise hand function does not transmit an automatic list of those indicating to speak to the Speaker. Instead, the Office of the Clerk compiles the list and transmits it to the Speaker. The procedure under the Zoom platform is as follows:


  1. the ICT Department generates Zoom meeting details, at least, an hour before the sitting of the House. The details are circulated to hon. Members using WhatsApp and Electronic-Mail(e-mail); and
  2. an hon. Member may use the Zoom log in details to participate in the sitting of the House while in the Chamber, a designated room or any other location. He/she can do this by taking the following steps:


  1. open Zoom Application on the supplied tablet;
  2. enter meeting ID supplied by the Office of the Clerk, through the ICT Department;
  3. just below where the meeting ID is entered, an hon. Member is required to enter his/her name, followed by his/her constituency. If an hon. Member is an hon. Minister or a nominated hon. Member of Parliament, he/she must indicate his/her portfolio or nominated in place of constituency. Hon. Members may wish to note that if they do not enter their name and constituency/portfolio/nominated details correctly, they may not be admitted to the meeting;
  4. press on join meeting;
  5. the Zoom Application will, then, request for the pass code. The hon. Member will be required to enter the pass code supplied to all hon. Members for the Zoom meeting; and
  6. the hon. Member should press log in.


Once an hon. Member has pressed log in, he/she will be placed in a waiting room until admitted into the meeting by the Office of the Clerk, through the ICT operations desk.


Hon. Members, at this juncture, I wish to emphasise that for security reasons, and in order to ensure that only hon. Members of Parliament participate in the proceedings, only hon. Members who have correctly entered their details outlined above are admitted into the meeting.




Hon. Members, the e-Chamber is an application that has been developed by the Office of the Clerk to complement the Zoom platform. The Zoom Application has limitations. Therefore, it was necessary to develop an application to enable hon. Members of Parliament to perform the following functions:


  1. indicate to the Speaker their intention to ask a question or debate;
  2. indicate to call for a division;
  3. indicate a point of order; and
  4. access parliamentary documents.


The e-Chamber Application is installed on hon. Members’ Huawei Tablets. To access e-Chamber, an hon. Member must do the following:


  1. open the e-Chamber Application; and
  2. enter his/her username and password.


Indicating to Speak under e-Chamber


The e-Chamber Application has the Speaker’s list on the left hand side. An hon. Member who wishes to speak presses on the green plus sign. Immediately he/she does this, he/she is included on the list of people to be called upon to speak. An hon. Member who indicates to speak, but later changes his/her mind can remove himself/herself from the list by simply pressing the red minus sign.


Indicating for a Division under e-Chamber


Currently, the Temporary Standing Orders do not provide for the manner in which hon. Members can call for a division. In this regard, the provision of Standing Order No. 64 applies. Standing Order No. 64 is couched in the following terms:


“Division to take place if decision is challenged


(64). (1)           Subject to paragraph (2) of this Standing Order, if the opinion of the Speaker as to the decision of a question is challenged, a Division shall take place.


(2)           Notwithstanding paragraph (1), the Speaker may immediately call upon those who, in his opinion, were in the minority to stand in their places, and –


  1. if fewer than twelve stand, the Speaker shall declare the decision of the Assembly, or
  2. if twelve or more stand, the Speaker shall order the Division bells to be rung and a Division shall take place.”


The import of the foregoing provision is that twelve hon. Members have to stand up in order to call for a division. However, given the current Hybrid System being used, it may be difficult for hon. Members to stand up physically. To this end, the e-Chamber platform has made provision for hon. Members to call for a division through a division list. On the right of the e-Chamber Application, there is a division list. An hon. Member who wishes to call for a division must press on the green plus sign. Immediately he/she presses, his/her constituency, portfolio, or if a nominated hon. Member without a portfolio, his/her name will be included on the division list. An hon. Member who calls for a division, and later changes his/her mind, may remove himself/herself from the division list by pressing the red minus sign.


Indicating for a Point of Order under e-Chamber


The Temporary Standing Orders do not provide for the manner of raising a point of order. However, Standing Order No. 46(d) allows an hon. Member to interrupt another hon. Member on the Floor in order to raise a point of order. It is in the following terms:


“46.       A member shall not interrupt another member who is speaking unless the member interrupting wants to –


  1.      call attention to a point of order on a matter of privilege.”


Hon. Members, ordinarily, an hon. Member will indicate his/her intention to raise a point of order by rising in his/her place. However, it is impracticable to administer Standing Order 46(d) under the hybrid system. In view of this, the e-Chamber system has provided a virtual way of doing this by creating a point of order feature.


To this end, in the top right corner of the e-Chamber application, there is a green bell with a plus sign on it. An hon. Member who wishes to raise a point of order must press on the green plus sign. Once an hon. Member presses the sign, his/her constituency, portfolio or name, as the case may be, appears on the screen as having requested a point of order. An hon. Member who changes his/her mind after indicating his/her intention to raise a point of order may cancel his/her request. The hon. Member may do so by pressing the red bell with a plus sign on it. Once that is done, their request will disappear from the screen.


Parliamentary Documents under e-Chamber


Standing Order 16 of the Temporary Standing Orders makes provision for the electronic distribution of documents. It states as follows:


“16.     Distribution of Documents


  1. All documents shall be distributed electronically to all Members of Parliament and the public.
  2. A document shall be deemed to have been Tabled when it is uploaded on the parliamentary e-platform.”


Hon. Members, the foregoing Standing Order necessitated the creation of an electronic platform on which all documents before the House are deposited and, thereby, Tabled.


The e-Chamber platform has achieved this by providing a document feature which contains all the documents before the House. These include the Order Paper, the President’s Official Opening Address to the National Assembly, the Budget Address, the Yellow Book, announcements, notices, Bills and Committee reports. To access these documents, an hon. Member must press on documents. A list of documents ensues, and the hon. Member may select the document he/she requires.


Use of the Hybrid System


Hon. Members, under the hybrid system adopted by the House, the Zoom application is the primary platform. It is used to interconnect hon. Members in different locations, namely the Chamber, designated rooms at Parliament Buildings and the various other locations from which hon. Members elect to participate in the proceedings.


While some aspects of the Bosch Communication System used in the Chamber and the Committee rooms have been incorporated in the hybrid system, others have not. For instance, the audio function has been linked, while the login, indicating and voting functions, have not. These aspects have been omitted because the two systems are different and lack the interface to exchange that kind of information. In this regard, under the hybrid system, the Bosch Communication System used in the Chamber only enables hon. Members to speak on the Floor of the House. For other functions such as indicating to speak or indicating to rise on a division or, indeed, a point of order, hon. Members must use either Zoom or the e-Chamber system.


Hon. Members, the platforms I have just highlighted do not work in isolation, but complement each other. In this regard, depending on an hon. Member’s physical location and the function he/she wishes to perform, he/she may use the following:


  1. To debate, listen in and view other debaters:


  1. Chamber − Bosch System and Zoom;
  2. Committee Rooms − Bosch System and Zoom;
  3. Amphitheatre − Zoom; and
  4. Members’ Motel and other venues − Zoom.


  b. To indicate to speak or seek the attention of the Speaker:


  1. Chamber − Zoom, traditional method of standing or e-Chamber system; and
  2. various locations − Zoom or e-Chamber system.


Hon. Members, coming back to Hon J. J. Mwiimbu’s point of order, I wish to confirm that, indeed, there were veritable challenges with the e-Chamber system on Tuesday, 29th September and Wednesday, 30th September, 2020, as stated by Hon. J. J. Mwiimbu, MP.


However, as I have already explained, under the hybrid system currently employed for our proceedings, the Bosch Communications System in the Chamber can only be used to speak. For other functions such as indicating to speak, rising on a point of order or calling for a division, hon. Members in the Chamber cannot use the Bosch system. As such, hon. Members are still at liberty to use either the Zoom or e-Chamber platform.


I am alive to the fact that hon. Members have undergone extensive training on the use of both the Zoom and e-Chamber platforms. In this regard, wherever and whenever hon. Members encounter challenges indicating on the e-Chamber platform, as was the case on 29th and 30th September, 2020, they can use the Zoom platform. Therefore, I urge hon. Members to be versatile with the different platforms available to them in their various locations, and the functions they can perform on those platforms.


I thank you.








The Minister of Home Affairs (Mr Kampyongo): Mr Speaker, I wish to thank you for this opportunity you have given me to issue a ministerial statement on incidents involving police shootings in Lusaka Province and the North-Western Province. I also would like to take advantage of this opportunity to give a brief update to the House and the nation on Phase II of the mobile issuance of National Registration Cards (NRCs).


Sir, let me bring to your attention the background of the events that led to the violence which occurred at Kamanga Police Post. The public may wish to note that the riot started in the early hours of 27th September, 2020. This was triggered by an attempt by some police reserve officers and members of the neighbourhood watch, who went to close Flavour Night Club, which was reported to have been operating beyond the stipulated hours.


The brief facts of the matter are that in the early hours of 27th September, 2020, around 0100 hours, a night club operating under the name Flavour Night Club in Kamanga Compound was reported to have been operating contrary to the Presidential directive that bars should only open on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 1800 hours to 2300 hours.


Sir, as a combined team of police and reserve officers and the neighbourhood watch tried to close the premises, patrons rose against them and, in the process of restoring order, a stray bullet caught Timothy Zulu, aged seventeen years, who later died. He was from Kamanga Compound. This unfortunate incident resulted in riotous behaviour by the angry mob, which later damaged Kamanga Police Post and two police motor vehicles. One officer who had been assigned to pick up the body of the deceased was also injured in the process.


Further, the rioters facilitated the escape of eleven suspects, ten males and one female, who are facing various criminal charges. Out of the eleven escapees, two have since been re-arrested and detained at Chelstone Police Station. Investigations were immediately instituted. The police reserve officer involved in the shooting of the juvenile has since been arrested and charged with murder. Six rioters have also been arrested and they will also appear before the courts of law. Investigations in this matter are ongoing.


Mr Speaker, with regard to the shooting incident, which occurred on the 26th of September, 2020, in Mwinilunga District, I wish to inform this august House that prior to the shooting incident on Monday, 21st September, 2020, the Zambia Police Service in Mwinilunga District received a report of theft from a salesman at a place called Just Chris Enterprise in Mwinilunga District. Brief facts of the matter are that on 20th September, 2020, a male suspect, aged twenty-one, of Kabanda Compound in Mwinilunga District allegedly stole one crate of castle lager beer valued at K286 from Just Chris Enterprise outlet located at Mwinilunga Town Centre.


Sir, the following day, on 21st September, 2020, the suspect was apprehended by the owner of Just Chris Enterprise, who handed him over to his salesman so that he could be taken to the police station. The suspect appeared to be in a drunken state and when they arrived at the police station, officers opted not to detain the suspect. Instead, the suspect was made to rest on the front desk bench until he could sober up. The wife to the complainant, who is also a police officer, requested that the suspect be released and asked to pay back the money later. Around 1700 hours, the suspect was allowed to go home and the subject was seen walking towards the main road along Lunga River Bridge.


Mr Speaker, on 22nd September, 2020, around 0500 hours, the police officer who was walking towards the police station from guard in town saw a man lying down on the roadside near the police station. He quickly alerted officers at the front desk, who identified the man as Mr Felix Mang’watu. Unfortunately, the man was dead. Officers picked up the body and deposited it at Mwinilunga District Hospital Mortuary. Police have since instituted investigations into the suspicious death of Mr Mwang’watu and, so far, one suspect is in police custody helping with investigations. Further, a post-mortem was conducted and the results have been released in readiness for the court process.


Mr Speaker, on Friday, 25thSeptember, 2020, after the post-mortem was conducted, and in the process of winding up its procedure, an irate mob from Kabanda Compound stormed the mortuary and picked up the body for burial. The unruly mob dragged the coffin towards the market, where Just Chris Enterprise and Guest House belonging to the same businessman are located. The mob damaged the property and looted goods there. The police fought running battles with the mob.


Sir, the action taken by the members of the public to forcefully grab the body from the mortuary culminated into serious confrontations between members of the public and the police. This breakdown of order put the lives of innocent members of the public and that of the police officers at risk. In a quest to restore order, as per operation procedure, police fired warning shots to try to restrain the uncompromising rioters who were wielding all sorts of weapons. Despite the warning shots, the rioters continued with their aggressive behaviour, which prompted the police to fire at their aggressive ringleaders with intent to maim. Regrettably, a male person by the name of Davis Ifota Kuwema, aged eighteen, of Kabanda Compound, in Mwinilunga District was caught by a bullet and lost his life.


Mr Speaker, in order to prevent further loss of life during such occurrences, with respect to Mwinilunga District, the Zambia Police Service is taking the following measures:


  1.  expanding of its establishment is in the process, following the growth of the district due to mining activities;
  2. procuring specialised equipment for effective crowd control and management;
  3. forming stand-by units in all the ten provinces that are undergoing in-service training at Lilayi Police College. The police will now employ a surge strategy that requires stand-by units to temporarily flag up areas where there is public disorder;
  4. conducting routine station lectures on the use of firearms and parades to assist the ability of officers in handling firearms before being assigned duties; and
  5. continuing to sensitise the public on the importance of maintaining law and order, through the Community Crime Prevention Unit (CCPU).


Mr Speaker, I wish to also confirm that the Council Chairperson for Mufumbwe District Council was arrested for assaulting the Council Secretary of the same council. However, the suspect has been released on police bond pending court appearance.


Mr Speaker, allow me to address some concerns raised by certain sections of society with regard to the issuance of National Registration Cards (NRCs) in the second phase of the exercise, particularly in Lusaka Province and the Southern Province.


Mr Speaker, mobile registration began on a good note after deploying the teams. The Ministry of Home Affairs is working closely with the Provincial Administrations and District Administration that are the custodians of the mobile registration timetable.


Mr Speaker, the Government has noted, with great concern, that some hon. Members of Parliament and political party agents are not collaborating with District Administration Officers, thereby making the work of the officers very difficult. One of the challenges being faced by the officers is the ferrying of applicants to places where the mobile teams are stationed.


Sir, applicants are being ferried from areas yet to be visited by mobile teams to current centres. This situation is inconveniencing the public and the officers because instead of waiting in their local areas, people are made to camp at issuance centres. Some people are literally sleeping at issuance centres in most districts instead of waiting for officers to visit their areas. The officers cannot even sleep at night as queues in some areas form as early as 0200 hours in some cases.


Mr Speaker, there has been heightened intimidation and harassment of officers by some hon. Members of Parliament, councillors and party agents. For example, in Kanyama Constituency of Lusaka Province, the registration process was disrupted at one centre and officers were attacked by some suspected cadres. This is counterproductive and unnecessary, as information, inquiries or concerns pertaining to the exercise should be made to the District Commissioners (DCs) at district level, the Permanent Secretary (PS) at provincial level or, indeed, the Office of the Provincial Ministers or the Office of the Minister of Home Affairs, and law enforcement officers will be at hand to deal with the perpetrators.


Mr Speaker, the other challenge is that of allegations of people charging unsuspected members of the public. Some unscrupulous people are charge for affidavit forms and fill them in advance, particularly in Lusaka District. This is not only unacceptable, but illegal. I have since instructed officers not to accept already completed forms. Therefore, I want to warn the would-be offenders that they will be brought to book.


Mr Speaker, the last challenge is the spreading of falsehoods. Some suspected political agents have been flooding communities spreading falsehoods about the exercise. They are telling people that the exercise will not be extended to all areas and that it will end before the expiry of the forty days. This has caused panic among members of the public and has made people to be suspicious of officers on the ground. Further, the same people are going round communities broadcasting messages on the issuance of NRCs, through loudspeakers, when they are not Government officials authorised to do so.


Mr Speaker, I wish to warn those spreading falsehoods that the law will take its course. In conclusion, may I take this opportunity to warn perpetrators of lawlessness that the Zambia Police Service will sternly deal with them and they will not allow criminals to challenge the institution with impunity.


I wish to remind all citizens of the Republic of Zambia that police stations are not play grounds where officers can be harassed and intimidated and that any disrespectful conduct towards the police by any individuals will be met with the full wrath of the law. I also wish to warn police officers that no one is above the law. The Government will not shield any officer from the course of justice when they choose to take the law into their own hands. Officers will face the consequences individually. The long arm of the law will visit them regardless of their position or status in the service. Officers are expected to follow laid-down procedures at all times when discharging their duties. Further, they are required to exhibit high levels of professionalism and discipline when dealing with members of the public.


Mr Speaker, I thank you.


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


Mr Chikote (Luampa): Mr Speaker, the challenge that we are facing in the issuance of the National Registration Cards (NRCs), specifically in Luampa District, is that people are not aware of when the officers are visiting places. When the officers issuing NRCs arrive at a certain place, they send back new applicants saying that they are just attending to those who have lost their NRCs. This information has been communicated to the District Commissioners (DCs), as per the hon. Minister’s guidance to us, as leaders. However, nothing has been done about it in Luampa.


Therefore, people have no information, whatsoever, and so, members of the public are having problems with the officers issuing NRCs. Rather than listening to one side of the story, which is that the community or members of the public are misbehaving and not following the laid-down procedures, how does the Government intend to help our people because the problems being faced are real? As leaders, we are seeing what is really happening. How is the hon. Minister going to assist us so that officers, through the Office of the DCs, can do things transparently to avoid all the confusion that has been stated in the statement?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, in my statement, I made it very clear that there is a need for hon. Members of Parliament and other civic leaders to collaborate with DCs, who should be able to share with them the schedule of where officers are to be at any particular time. This is because these teams cannot be in all the areas at the same time. Therefore, it is important that hon. Members of Parliament get this information so that they can also play a part in sensitising members of the public in their respective areas. However, in the absence of that, I am afraid it would be very difficult to inform hon. Members about the location of the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) officers at a given time.


Sir, we decided to centralise and delegate the responsibility of monitoring this important exercise to the provinces for the purpose of the local leadership to take leadership in conducting the exercise. So, I am advising my hon. Colleague that we have advised the DCs to ensure that they also make information regarding the schedules of locations of the teams at any given time available to all stakeholders.


Mr Speaker, hon. Provincial Ministers are equally available to address challenges such as what my hon. Colleague has raised. Admittedly, these teams cannot be everywhere at the same time. So, it is very important that the period they spend in these centres is utilised because they have limited time.


I thank you, Sir.


Ms Katuta (Chienge): Mr Speaker, –


Mr Kintu: On a point of order, Sir.


Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Mr Kintu: Mr Speaker, the gadget has a problem. I did not raise a point of order. I am trying to log in to the e-Chamber platform, but nothing is being indicated. That is why you saw an indication of a point of order.


Mr Speaker: Well, your point has been taken. It appears that it may not be possible to reach you wherever you are, given the background I have seen on the screen. However, if you were within the precincts of the National Assembly, certainly, we would have tried to reach you so that we render some assistance to you.


Mr Kintu: I thank you, Mr Speaker,


Ms Katuta: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister said that a stray bullet killed someone in Kamanga. Can we not come up with laws that will stop the police from using live bullets to disperse crowds? Can the Minister of Home Affairs ask the police to stop using live bullets and instead use rubber bullets when dispersing crowds.


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, before I respond to that question, I would like to make it clear to my dear colleague from Luampa, who talked about new applicants who have attained the age of sixteen being denied the opportunity to obtain NRCs, that this should not be the case. This exercise is intended to benefit, first and foremost, citizens who have attained the age of sixteen and above. It is also for the replacement of NRCs for members of the public who could have lost their NRCs or for those whose NRCs are damaged. So, that issue will be followed up and addressed because new applicants should not be segregated and left behind.


Mr Speaker, as regards the follow-up question by the hon. Member for Chienge, indeed, officers are trained to use gazetted equipment, which includes firearms. There are laws, world over, that legally allow the police to use firearms because the nature of the crimes they deal with vary. There are also criminals who use weapons. Therefore, one cannot expect a police officer to go with a short baton to deal with a criminal who is using a firearm.


However, Mr Speaker, I would like to assure the hon. Member that of late, the Ministry of Home Affairs has procured modern equipment for the Zambia Police Service, which is meant to lessen the usage of firearms in dealing with situations. Most of the equipment we have acquired for them will assist them to deal with matters such as crowd control and restoration of law and order. So, a change will be seen. Like I said, currently, officers are just getting oriented on how to effectively use the new equipment. Otherwise, world over, police are gazetted to use firearms.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Lihefu (Manyinga): Mr Speaker, are you able to hear me?


Mr Speaker: Yes, are you alive?




Mr Lihefu: Mr Speaker, I am.


Mr Speaker, I would like to get some clarification on what happened in Mufumbwe. I would like to find out whether the one who was arrested was the Council Chairperson, the Deputy Council Chairperson or a mere councillor? What I deduced from the video I watched is that it was not the Council Chairperson who was involved.


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, the information we have is that the civic leader who fought with the principal officer is the Council Chairperson. However, if, indeed, there is a mismatch, we can clarify that. Otherwise, the information we have is that the Chairperson of the council is the one who was arrested for assault.


Evg. Shabula (Itezhi-tezhi): Mr Speaker, –


Mr Ng’ambi: On a point of order, Sir.


Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Mr Ng’ambi: Mr Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity to raise a point of clarification. The hon. Minister may recall that prior to the commencement of the second phase –


Mr Speaker: Hon. Member for Chifubu, the indication is that you would like to raise a point of order, not a point of clarification. So, if you have a question by way of clarification to the hon. Minister, you indicate to pose a question, but not to raise a point of order.


Mr Ng’ambi: Mr Speaker, the Speaker’s list on the system is not working and I think it is the same confusion that hon. Members –


Mr Speaker: Order!


Hon. Member for Chifubu, you cannot modify the rules to suit your situation. Certainly, you are not raising a point of order. I empathise with you that you are having problems with your tablet and the system at large, but that cannot be an avenue for you to ask a question by raising a point of order.


Mr Ng’ambi: Mr Speaker, I request that I be placed on the list of those who want to raise a point of clarification.


Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, I am sure you were following my ruling. If you have difficulties with the e-Chamber, resort to Zoom Video Communications (Zoom) and we will catch you or you will catch the Speaker’s eye.


May the hon. Member for Itezhi-tezhi proceed.


Evg. Shabula: Mr Speaker, in the hon. Minister’s statement, I expected him to address the complaints of the people in the areas which have received complaints but, instead, he has brought out a barrage of threats that people will be arrested. Is it the hon. Minister’s plan to attend to the problems or to the complaints presented by the people such as excuses given by his officers that they have no materials, transport and fuel? They say they cannot buy fuel just because they fear it will be mixed with water. Is it the hon. Minister’s intention to institute investigations in those areas and ascertain what the problem is rather than threatening people with arrests?


Mr Speaker: Hon. Member for Itezhi-tezhi, what is your question?


Evg. Shabula: Mr Speaker, will the hon. Minister institute investigations into the complaints of the people in the Southern Province to find out whether the complaints are founded rather than just threatening people with arrests for complaining?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, before I respond to the hon. Member’s follow-up question, permit me to make a clarification. I have just exchanged notes with the hon. Minister of Local Government that the suspect arrested in the assault case in Mufumbwe is the Deputy Chairperson, not the Chairperson. I hope that clarifies the position.


Sir, I have explained the channels of communication in addressing challenges that our officers are encountering on the ground. In providing those channels, I was not warning the innocent members of the public. I was warning those who are trying to frustrate Government programmes by using force. Those are the ones I was warning. Certainly, a person who is disrupting a programme is different from the one who is lodging in a complaint. So, the hon. Member of Parliament is being encouraged to follow the channels of communication where there are challenges.


Mr Speaker, at the moment, there is a national technical team which is running from one place to another to ensure that the challenges our officers are encountering on the ground are addressed. Indeed, in some areas where our officers may have challenges accessing fuel and someone offers to supply them with fuel, which they are not sure of, they have every right to turn down the offer because the equipment they are using is sensitive. They may end up damaging the equipment by getting what they call changanya fuel, which is illegally commingled or mixed. These are challenges that we have requested our DCs and our officers on the ground to address.


Sir, there is no harm in the hon. Members of Parliament engaging the DCs because they are Government representatives on the ground. We had challenges in Phase I and they were addressed in the same way as I have advised. I do not see why it would be so much of a challenge for hon. Colleagues to collaborate with the DCs and Permanent Secretaries (PSs) or, indeed, the hon. Provincial Ministers in the provinces where we are rolling out Phase II of the mobile issuance of NRCs exercise.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Speaker: Hon. Member for Chifubu, I would like to assure you that you successfully entered your name on the Speaker’s list. You have been on the list right from the beginning and it is just a question of waiting for your turn. There is nothing wrong with the system. As a matter of fact, you are the fourteenth on the list.




Mr Jere (Livingstone): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister stated the actions that were taken on the reserve police officer who shot at a person in Lusaka, but he has not stated what action was taken against the police officer who shot at a person in the North-Western Province. What action will be taken on that officer who used a firearm to kill a person?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, certainly, the circumstances were different. Like I said, the investigations are still going on and once they are concluded, the issue the hon. Member of Parliament has raised will, then, be addressed.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister is aware that, as hon. Members of Parliament, we are stakeholders and we are supposed to work with him, his officers and the District Commissioners (DCs) in the respective constituencies and districts in order to ensure that this particular exercise succeeds.


Mr Speaker, unfortunately, we are facing resistance from the DCs even where we know that the officers have problems executing their assignments. We are aware that, at times, they do not have fuel, as my other colleague has indicated, and paper, to ensure that the exercise is a success. Taking into account that we are leaders that are supposed to collaborate with the Government, what is wrong with us, as hon. Members of Parliament, assisting the DC’s Office, when it does not have fuel or paper, with fuel and paper so that this particular programme succeeds? Even on the issue of programming, the DCs are not giving programmes of work to members of the public. As a result, there is panic. All we want is for the hon. Minister of Home Affairs to issue specific guidelines so that there is no problem, as this programme is being implemented. We are all stakeholders and we are willing to assist. Can he be specific regarding what we can do to play our part, as hon. Members of Parliament?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I appreciate the concerns raised by Hon. J. J. Mwiimbu, Member of Parliament for Monze Central. I totally agree that the hon. Members of Parliament are stakeholders. That is why, if you recall, when Hon. J. J. Mwiimbu raised a point of order, we made sure that we followed up the issue he has raised and our officers were assigned to make sure that officers were deployed in Monze. That is the collaboration I am talking about.


Mr Speaker, I would like to assure this august House and the nation that the hon. Minister of Finance released funds for this exercise. The materials have been procured and fuel has also been provided for the officers. We can understand that there are no filling stations in some areas. If the issue is of such matters, certainly, we have no objections to hon. Members’ help by working together with the DCs in addressing these situations.


Sir, the materials are available and when they run out, there are standing arrangements on how they should be restocked for the officers to continue working. I have been speaking to a couple of hon. Members from the Southern Province and the Western Province. I spoke with Hon. Mwiinga, Member of Parliament for Chikankata, who gave me feedback that things are now okay in his district. I also spoke to Hon. Sing’ombe and many others.


Mr Speaker, I am also speaking with the DCs, the hon. Provincial Ministers and the PSs in order for them to provide guidance and lessen the misunderstandings between the stakeholders who have to deal with the DCs. This is a national exercise which is meant for our people. As people’s representatives, we have every right to participate in sensitising our people.


Sir, we are against disruptions. Obviously, there are some people who have anxieties and, without having information, they move people from one area to another to bombard our officers. Our officers are equally human beings who can work and deal with a certain amount of workload. So, if the officers are over stressed, then, you cannot expect much from them.


Sir, it is for this reason that we are encouraging the smooth flow of information so that people stop panicking and wait for the officers to go to areas nearest to them as opposed to moving and camping in areas where the officers are located at a given time. So, I agree with the hon. Member of Parliament for Monze Central and we shall continue collaborating. I have assured him that I am also available to deal with the issues.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Siwanzi (Nakonde): Mr Speaker, my question is on unfortunate incidents of stray bullets. I would like to find out from the hon. Minister if there is any form of compensation for the victims of stray bullets or the surviving families in an event that the victim dies?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, circumstances vary and that is why we encourage people to be civil in dealing with situations. Where there is a breakdown of order, circumstances vary from one another. According to procedure, where officers are able to disperse the crowd, we normally do not experience casualties. We only experience casualties when the rioters become uncompromising. It is that situation which puts the lives of officers at risk as well. Like the circumstances given in Mwinilunga where you have a mob wielding all sorts of offensive weapons, the officers have the responsibility to defend themselves and members of the public as well as property. 


Mr Speaker, where it is determined that the officers used wrong judgement and investigations reveal likewise, there are remedial measures for both the victims and those who are found wanting. That is the reason I said that it does not please us to see an officer on duty being arrested for a capital offence such as murder. This is why it is important that we advise our people to be law-abiding citizens. Certainly, where there is a breakdown of order, collateral damage cannot be avoided.


I thank you, Sir.


Ms Subulwa (Sioma): Mr Speaker, obtaining a National Registration Card (NRC) is something that everyone looks forward to, whether educated or not. Owing to the terrain in Sioma, there is no public transport, but the hon. Minster has talked about time limitation. If he understands the distances between places in the Western Province, then, he should understand my question. Is the hon. Minister thinking of extending this exercise, especially for areas like the Western Province?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I appreciate the follow-up question from the hon. Member for Sioma. I would like to assure her and the people of Sioma that the reason we put the Western Province in the second phase, which falls around this time of the year, is that of the terrain. We knew that some areas get flooded and thus, we took those factors into consideration. We are trying everything possible to reach out to people, including accessing our people through water. We are making available water transport like boats in order for the officers to get to our people in various parts of the Western Province.


Mr Speaker, to discuss the aspect of extension would be premature. It is difficult for me to guarantee that because we are working with a very tight schedule. We are also mindful that the ECZ will also go into the field to carry out its work. I will not give any guarantee on whether there will be an extension for Phase II of the exercise. We need to work around the clock and ensure that our officers are able to reach the most remote areas, if not all the parts of Sioma, to give an opportunity to our people. We shall try to do our best.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, I am cognisant of the fact that there is a long list of hon. Members indicating to ask questions. It is not possible for me to exhaust that list because if you look at our order of proceedings, you will note that we still have a lot of business to transact, including two Motions that require to be attended to and a Bill. We have barely seventy minutes before we adjourn. So, I will begin winding down and in this fashion.


I will take the last four interventions and no more. I will take questions from the hon. Members for Chasefu, Moomba, Kalomo Central and Liuwa constituencies.


You may begin removing your names thereafter. I read out a ruling in which I advised you on how to remove your names from the screen.


Mr Zimba (Chasefu): Mr Speaker, my question is a follow-up to the one asked by an hon. Member regarding the use of live bullets, as opposed to rubber bullets. In response to that question, the hon. Minister talked about bringing in new equipment to curb riotous behaviour. Rubber bullets and tear gas have been used since time immemorial. The hon. Minister said that police officers cannot go to a place where people are wielding different kinds of weapons. However, in the Lusaka incident, the police were told about a bar operating beyond the stipulated hours. Did they have to use live ammunition? In the same vein, why is the police officer who fired a bullet in the line of duty being charged for murder and not attempted murder or manslaughter?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, indeed, the loss of life is regrettable and it does not please us at all to see people lose lives. For example, David Ifota Kwema, who lost his life in Mwinilunga, was a close relative of the Inspector-General of Police. So, one understands how much we are equally concerned. The hon. Member referred to what transpired in Kamanga and I stated that the Police Reservist was arrested because the circumstances surrounding that action border on negligence. As we know, Police Reservists are not supposed to use firearms during operations. They are supposed to be in the company of substantive police officers. So, there was an aspect of negligence and that is why that particular individual was arrested. The situation could have been handled differently had the officers applied themselves professionally, as expect of them.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Chaatila (Moomba): Mr Speaker, in view of the fact that we have informed the hon. Minister about the many logistical challenges being faced during Phase II of the Mobile Issuance of National Registration Card (NRC) Exercise, will he consider extending the exercise to cover up for the days that have been lost like it was done during Phase I of this exercise?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I think I have responded to the issue of extension, on which the hon. Member for Moomba is making a follow-up. The circumstances that necessitated the extension of Phase I of the exercise are totally different from the challenges that we are dealing with. I would like to assure the hon. Member for Moomba that my team is working day and night to address those challenges. Like I said, we have limited time and the best we can do is utilise the remaining time as much as we can.


Sir, in my previous update, I mentioned that the challenge we encountered during Phase I of the exercise was that of some equipment not being in the country. For the stakeholders who would want to verify this, the bills of lading indicating when we received the equipment are available at our offices. So, this is different from moving equipment from one place to another. However, administrative challenges whereby people just fail to reason with DCs regarding the location of the teams and where they are supposed to be cannot be compelling reasons to warrant the consideration of extending the exercise because we have to get out of the field in order to allow the ECZ to also get into the field and do its work.


Mr Speaker, I thank you.


Mr Kamboni (Kalomo Central): Mr Speaker, we are facing a lot of challenges with regard to the mobile issuance of National Registration Card (NRC) exercise. Firstly, the officers start work late, usually after 0800 hours. Secondly, when the affidavit forms in Katundulu ran out, we offered to get more forms, but the officers turned down the offer. To date, I do not know of any programme involving the issuance of NRCs. Yesterday, I was with the District Commissioner (DC) for one hour, but he did not tell me anything about the programme. All I was told was that the materials were not enough, and so, they do not know where they are going next. In some cases, they give the excuse of the laminating machine not working. The other time, the machine for taking photographs was not working while people waited. What transpired in Mukwela leaves much to be desired. If the ministry is failing to run the mobile issuance of NRCs exercise, will the registration of many voters within thirty days be managed?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I appreciate the concerns of the hon. Member for Kalomo Central.


Sir, this exercise is being undertaken in ten provinces. Apart from the mobile exercise, we have permanent offices in all the districts in this country where citizens are identified, registered and issued with NRCs from Monday to Friday. My plea to the Leader of the Opposition is that he narrows the misunderstandings between hon. Members and DCs. We had old DCs, but we now have new DCs, and I do not see why this acrimony should continue. Since we now have new DCs in all the districts, we expect a different status. Alas, we still have the issue of hon. Members of Parliament not co-operating with DCs. What could be the problem? However, out of the ten provinces, these complaints are just coming from the Southern Province.


Hon. UPND Members: No!




Mr Kampyongo: Seriously! I am being sincere here.


Mr Speaker, I am not being malicious. What I am saying is that let us narrow this contention for the betterment of our people. I am not being defensive or protective of anyone. So, collectively, we can find a solution. I have heard some people complain about not knowing the location of the mobile registration teams at a given time or that the DC is not giving them this information. That is the complaint from a good number of districts in the Southern Province. Yes, there are equally other challenges in other districts but, at least, hon. Members and DCs do interact there. I gave an example of the North-Western Province where I personally engaged Hon. Muchima, Hon. Samakayi and other hon. Members.


Mr Speaker, the point I am making is that there is room for improvement in collaboration between the stakeholders, namely hon. Members and the people on the ground, the DCs. Certainly, we can maximise on the time that has remained in order for our people to be served. The people in villages might just end up missing out on this very important exercise if we do not get to a common ground.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Dr Musokotwane was inaudible.


Mr Kampyongo was inaudible.


Mr Ngambi was inaudible.








43. Mr Siwanzi (Nakonde) asked the Minister of Water Development, Sanitation and Environmental Protection:


  1. whether the Government is aware that the water reticulation plant in Nakonde District was not operating at full capacity, as of December 2019, due to rationing of electricity which is provided through a pre-paid tariff plan;
  2. whether the Government has any plans to migrate the Nakonde Plant and other plants countrywide, which are on pre-paid tariff, to the fixed tariff payment plan;
  3. if so, when the plans will be implemented; and
  4. whether the Government has any plans to procure generator sets for use as power backups by water plants during electricity load management periods.


The Minister of Water Development, Sanitation and Environmental Protection (Dr Chanda): Mr Speaker, I wish to inform the House that the Government is aware that the water reticulation plant in Nakonde was not operating at full capacity as of December 2019, due to the electricity load management being implemented by Zesco Limited, but not through rationing of electricity, which is provided through a pre-paid tariff. As a result of the electricity load management, Chambeshi Water Supply and Sanitation Company (CWSSC) was only able to supply water to the residents of Nakonde from 0600 hours in the morning to 1200 hours in the afternoon. However, I should mention that the CWSSC has since improved the hours of water supply in Nakonde District from 0600 hours to 1800 or 2000 hours. This follows the improvement in the electricity load management by Zesco Limited.


Sir, the Government has no plans to place the Nakonde Plant and other plants countrywide, which are on pre-paid tariff scheme, on the fixed tariff payment scheme.


Mr Speaker, as I have stated above, currently, there are no plans to place Nakonde Plant and other plants countrywide on the fixed tariff payment scheme.


Sir, the Government has plans to procure generator sets as power backup for water treatment plants during load management periods. To this effect, the Government, through my ministry, has since completed the emergency needs assessment for the eleven commercial water utility companies across the country. So, there are plans to procure generator sets for water treatment plants to cushion the impact of load management. Apart from procuring generator sets, the ministry has also conducted assessments for other alternative power sources like solar power.


Mr Speaker, I thank you.


Mr A. C. Mumba (Kantanshi): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister is aware that the value of investment in water treatment plants is very high. Could he share with the nation why this company did not consider including generator sets in its Bill of Quantity (BoQ) as opposed to doing it now on a needs assessment on an investment that is new. Despite that load-shedding, which is one and the same thing with load management, will come to an end when the President commissions the new power station, why did the ministry not ensure that there is back-up power at the water treatment plant so that this investment can be enjoyed by the people of Nakonde?


Dr Chanda: Mr Speaker, the hon. Member for Nakonde may attest to the fact that the Nakonde Water Treatment Plant is a very old plant. There is a project to upgrade the water treatment plant. When most of these water treatment plants were built in the early 1960s or 1970s, a situation like load-shedding was not factored into the projects. We are dealing with new realities. I must assure the hon. Member of Parliament for Kantanshi that the Ministry of Water Development, Sanitation and Environmental Protection, with the support of the Ministry of Finance, is already providing support to all the commercial water utilities. Some of them, like the North-Western Water and Sewerage Company, have already procured generator sets. As we upgrade these treatment plants, we are not only looking at buying generator sets but also other alternative sources of energy like solar.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Siwanzi: Mr Speaker, the residents of Nakonde are grateful to this Government for providing clean water to Nakonde. I had a meeting with the manager for Chambeshi Water and Sewerage Company (CWSSC) and he categorically stated that the new modular plants can only operate with 100 per cent supply of electricity at all times. Maybe, the hon. Minister is referring to the old plants. The challenge posed is that the company cannot continue running the machines because it is rationing the prepaid electricity unit because it has a budget for a month. I would like the hon. Minister to assure us that increased hours of water supply will continue and the supply will not be affected by the rationing of electricity units.


Dr Chanda: Mr Speaker, as the hon. Member for Nakonde knows, I was at that water treatment plant just over a month ago to verify the situation. I was with the Board Chairperson and the Managing Director for CWSSC. What I can state categorically is that the load management by Zesco Limited is improving. We have been assured, time and again, by the hon. Minister of Energy that with the coming in of the Kafue Gorge Lower Power Plant, which will bring in 300 MW to the national grid, load management should decrease. So, it is not so much an issue of tariff management but, probably, that the company was going through some temporary financial challenge. I can assure you that the commercial water utilities are well-funded. The issue is not so much about rationing electricity units, but about load management, which has since improved.


Mr Speaker, I must take this opportunity to send a message to all commercial water utilities in the country that they need to negotiate directly with Zesco Limited for dedicated power lines because the water treatment plants are like health facilities. We say water is life. So, a water treatment plant is life. What some commercial water utilities such as Kafubu Water and Sewerage Company in Ndola have done is to negotiate with Zesco Limited to not subject the line going to the water treatment plant to load-shedding. The line is spared. That is the direction I have given. I must assure the hon. Member that the situation will keep improving rather than get worse.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.








Dr Kopulande (Chembe): Mr Speaker, I beg to move that this House urges the Government to suspend Comprehensive Sexuality Education pending wider consultations with all stakeholders.


Mr Speaker: Is the Motion seconded?


Ms Katuta (Chienge): Mr Speaker, I beg to second the Motion.


Dr Kopulande: Mr Speaker, I am very glad that you have given me this opportunity to move this Motion urging the Government to suspend the implementation of Comprehensive Sexuality Education in schools so as to allow for further consultation with all stakeholders in the country.


Sir, allow me to state, from the outset, that this is not my Motion. It is a Motion by the Zambian people who have suffered silently as a result of Comprehensive Sexuality Education intrusion into their Christian, cultural and moral values through the sexualisation of their children. Therefore, I am simply the people’s mouthpiece on bringing their silent suffering to the attention of this august House and the listening Government of the Patriotic Front (PF).


Sir, Comprehensive Sexuality Education is defined by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) as an age-appropriate, culturally relevant approach to teaching about sex and relationships by providing scientifically accurate, realistic and non-judgmental education. It seeks to equip young people with the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values they need to determine and enjoy their sexuality physically, emotionally and individually, and in relationships.


Mr Speaker, the House may wish to note that Zambia affirmed the Comprehensive Sexuality Education through the Eastern and Southern African Ministerial Commitment in December 2013. The Comprehensive Sexuality Education curriculum worldwide, including Zambia, is replete with controversial topics, including teaching young children about sexual pleasure, sexual orientation or homosexuality, gender identity, access and use of contraceptives, abortion, and other drugs as well as medical procedures for termination of pregnancies. For instance, the Comprehensive Sexuality Education syllabus for Grade 8 teaches girls to consistently use a condom to avoid contracting the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and unintended pregnancies. This is under Programme on page 25 of the curriculum. I can lay the document on the Table. The syllabus for Grade 10 contains a chapter that practically demonstrates to pupils steps involved in the use of a male condom. At Grade 9, sub-topic teaches sexual orientation and gender identity focusing on describing sexual orientation, factors influencing sexual orientation and finding ways to eliminate stereotypes and violation of the so-called sexual orientation rights. So, it is clear from the few examples that Comprehensive Sexuality Education is not about teaching sexuality. Instead of educating children about healthy sexual behaviour, it indoctrinates youth with the idea that sexual promiscuity is normal.


Sir, children need guidance and we teach them through whatever information we give them. Unlike traditional sexual education where sex is taught with regard to the age of the child, Comprehensive Sexuality Education is highly explicit and promotes radical sexual ideologies and behaviours that conflict with our religious and cultural values. I have viewed videos on this subject and the ultimate goal of Comprehensive Sexuality Education is to change the sexual and gender norms of our society by making heavy sexual activity normal.


Mr Speaker, while proponents of Comprehensive Sexuality Education claim that it helps reduce STIs and the spread of HIV, results from empirical studies have demonstrated the opposite. Here in Zambia, Comprehensive Sexuality Education has had opposite results from its intended purpose. The 2018 Zambia Demographic and Health Survey indicated that teenage pregnancies are still on the rise despite this intervention. According to the report, 29 per cent of girls aged between fifteen and nineteen years old had already begun childbearing with 24 per cent having had a live birth and 5 per cent having been pregnant with their first child, as reported in the Zambia Daily Mail of 3rd July, 2019.


Sir, as a people, Zambians pride themselves on being a Christian nation, as enshrined in our Republican Constitution. In addition, we have entrenched cultural values and morals which have helped to shape our attitudes, beliefs and behaviours from generation to generation. Therefore, the introduction of Comprehensive Sexuality Education in our schools without full consultation with key stakeholders is not only morally enslaving but is also an anathema to the very core values that have defined us as a people since time immemorial. This is what has led to a cross-section of our society to demand Zambia’s withdrawal from the Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA) Ministerial Commitment on Comprehensive Sexuality Education.


Mr Speaker, it is not a secret that Comprehensive Sexuality Education is promoted by powerful and respected international organisations, some of whom fund major socio-economic programmes in key sectors of our economy. Further, the Comprehensive Sexuality Education agenda is promoted by multi-million dollar organisations whose motive is to profit from the health care services they provide, through Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR), to young children and adults such as condoms, contraceptives and other family planning devices. This is affirmed by a study commissioned by UNESCO in 2016, which concluded that Comprehensive Sexuality Education significantly contributed to increased use of condoms and contraceptives, among others.


Sir, as hon. Members, are we prepared, with our conscience, to negate our fundamental norms, principles and values for a piece of silver? The people of Zambia say, no.


Mr Speaker, as I conclude, let me emphasise the need for the Government to seriously consider suspending Comprehensive Sexuality Education from our schools to allow for consultation with all key stakeholders. This is not even an examinable subject. As we make these consultations, let us ask ourselves, as a nation, whether sexuality education is the top most priority for our nation’s development. Will it take us out of the poverty that confronts our people on a daily basis and threatens their survival? Why can we not teach our children issues to do with Christian values, entrepreneurial and innovation ecosystems, climate change mitigation and resilience, agriculture and technology, instead of sexualising them at an early age?


Mr Speaker, this is a very serious matter, as it sits right at the core of our nationhood and foundation of our future. Therefore, I wish to ask all hon. Members of this House to support this Motion and to request the Government to put a consultative mechanism in place at the earliest.


Mr Speaker, I beg to move.


Mr Speaker: Does the seconder wish to speak now or later?


Ms Katuta: Now, Mr Speaker.


Sir, I would like to thank the mover of the Motion, Hon. Dr Kopulande. I would like to urge the House to support this Motion to suspend the teaching of Comprehensive Sexuality Education in our country, which is a Christian nation, so that we give ample time to all stakeholders, including the public, to scrutinise and understand what Comprehensive Sexuality Education is about.


Mr Speaker, the Bible, the good book, says that we should teach a child in the manner that he/she should grow up. Looking at the level where the teaching of Comprehensive Sexuality Education begins, there is a concern from the public. Looking at our culture, we feel this is a bit too much information for the young ones. When we talk about children being taught how to keep themselves and prevent themselves from getting pregnant, a girl child goes through some training when she reaches puberty. At this stage, girls are taught how to avoid getting pregnant at an early age, and some of us grew up in that manner.


Sir, the cry from members of the public is that the Government gives them an opportunity to look at what Comprehensive Sexuality Education is and see if it is something that should continue to be taught to our children, especially at an early age. Some members of the public and parents are contesting or questioning whether Zambia is, indeed, a Christian nation.


Mr Speaker, we are a sovereign nation. Therefore, we believe that Comprehensive Sexuality Education should first be looked into by the public. That way, parents can be given a chance to give a go-ahead for this subject to be taught in our schools. It has brought about many questions. So, I urge this listening Government of the Patriotic Front (PF) to give the people of Zambia a chance to also voice out their opinions and say something about the education that is being given to their children.


Sir, I would also like to urge the Government to listen to other stakeholders, and the main stakeholders are the clergy. The Church works in partnership with the current Government and the public. We have to consider the views of the Church and work jointly with the clergy so that we are able to start teaching our children like we were taught in subjects like biology. Some of us were taught biology at high school.


Mr Speaker, for this reason, I am appealing that the Government may, please, suspend the teaching of Comprehensive Sexuality Education so that we have a clean nation. As things stand, it is a taboo for a child, who is in Grade 5, to talk about the reproductive system. If Comprehensive Sexuality Education is being taught in the name of protecting children from Human immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), for instance, we are saying that there is another way of teaching our children about the spread of diseases. However, Comprehensive Sexuality Education is encouraging our children to start indulging in sexual activities at an early age. It is for this reason that I urge the House to support this Motion moved by the hon. Member for Chembe.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, I have noted, with concern, the crisis that is in the Patriotic Front (PF) pertaining to issues of policy and how it manages this country. It is important to note that this particular programme is a PF programme.


Hon. PF Members: Question!


Mr Mwiimbu: This particular programme was initiated by the PF in 2013. It has been in implementation from 2014 to date. It is the PF which is running with this particular project. I am alarmed to hear the statements that are coming from members of the PF pertaining to this programme.


Mr Speaker, are they telling us that the PF members themselves have misled the country into engaging in unchristian activities? They have been unchristian for five years. They have been advocating for things that are immoral and against our culture.


Hon. PF Members: Question!


Hon. UPND Members: Yes!


Mr Mwiimbu: That is −


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


Mr Speaker: Order!


Hon. Member for Monze Central, take your seat. You also take your seat, hon. Deputy Chief Whip.


I will allow the debates without points of order.


Hon. Member for Monze Central, continue with your debate.


Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, the point I am making is that this is a programme of the Government. The Government of the day is the PF, and it is the one that initiated this particular programme.


Hon. UPND Member: They have forgotten!


Mr Mwiimbu: Unless the PF is forgetting that it is in Government, it should know that it is the one that initiated this programme.


Mr Speaker, as I have indicated, this particular programme, which the PF is now saying is unchristian, immoral, against our values and that it should be stopped has been implemented for the past five years. The point I am making is: Is the PF telling us that it has been propagating unchristian issues for the past five years? Could it be that it has been teaching our children immorality and going against the collective values of the nation? Is that what it is telling us?


Mr Speaker, the United Nations (UN) has made a statement on this particular matter, which I would like to quote, with your permission. The UN says it is ready to support the planned Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) review. The UN statement is as follows:


“The UN believes that Comprehensive Sexuality Education framework provides an important tool to address early and unintended pregnancies, Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV) and other sexually transmitted infections, child marriage and gender-based violence (GBV) in Zambia. The UN stands ready to provide support to the Government of the Republic of Zambia on the planned review. The UN believes that children and young people should have access to accurate, factual, age and culturally appropriate information about relationships as they transition to adulthood.”


Sir, contrary to the recent rumours and misleading information circulating on social media, the Comprehensive Sexuality Education framework was developed in 2014 by the Government of the Republic of Zambia through a thorough and comprehensive process involving the education sector stakeholders, traditional leaders, faith-based groups and civil society organisations resulting in an age-appropriate curriculum respecting Zambian cultural values. What we are being told today is that there was no consultation and that the PF just woke up one day and started introducing immorality and unchristian values to this nation.


Hon. PF Members: Question!


Mr Mwiimbu: That is what they are telling us. That is what they are telling us by saying that they should consult stakeholders. This means the PF did not consult the stakeholders when it introduced this particular Motion. It is telling us that it has not been ruling this country properly.


Hon. PF Members: Question!


Mr Mwiimbu: The PF is introducing things that are alien to this country. That is what we are being told. 


Mr Speaker, as the United Party for National Development (UPND), we will leave this matter to be determined by the ones who are saying they are bringing immorality and are uncultured in this nation. Let them address it.


Mr Speaker, we are also surprised that despite the pronouncement by Her Honour the Vice-President on the Floor of the House that the Government is considering the issues that are being raised, they are now questioning the statement by Her Honour the Vice-President by moving this Motion on the Floor of the House. It is unprocedural and it has never been heard of in this country that members of a party can raise points of no confidence on Her Honour the Vice- President. That is what the action by the mover of the Motion means. The PF does not agree with what Her Honour the Vice-President said on the Floor of the House. There is division in the PF and its members have no confidence in the statement made by Her Honour the Vice-President. Let the members of the PF resolve these issues on their own, but not with us.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Mecha (Chifunabuli): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank you for giving me an opportunity to add my voice to the debate on this Motion. Right from the outset, I think, I need to make a correction that this is a Private Member’s Motion. Any hon. Member of Parliament is allowed to actually move a Motion. The Motion is not being moved by the Patriotic Front (PF), but by an individual hon. Member of Parliament. That is the correction I wanted to make.


Mr Speaker, secondly, I must indicate that there is no single school curriculum which is cast in concrete. Curriculums can be changed anytime to suit the context at a particular time. This is what has happened over time. We should not forget where we are coming from. There were serious concerns that were raised before Comprehensive Sexuality Education was introduced in Zambia. We had serious challenges like an increased number of school dropouts arising from pregnancies. There were also serious challenges arising from very high rates of Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV) prevalence. Some studies were conducted and they revealed that boys and girls less than fifteen years were actually indulging in sex. This is the more reason serious questions were raised regarding the quality of education our children were receiving.


Mr Speaker, it is not true that sexuality education is new in Zambia. It has been there and even during our time, it was taught through biology. However, what is important for the Zambians to understand is that, upon realisation of the numerous challenges that emerged before Comprehensive Sexuality Education was introduced, people started thinking of ways in which to improve the quality of delivery of sexuality education. This is how come they came up with Comprehensive Sexuality Education. It was intended to try to fix the numerous challenges that we were facing at the time. In fact, that is the more reason a team of Ministers committed to implementing Comprehensive Sexuality Education.


Mr Speaker, arising from that realisation, there was an extensive consultation, and records thereon are there. The facilitators will give you records to the effect that so many stakeholders were involved in the consultative process and that they endorsed Comprehensive Sexuality Education. The other point we need to understand is that the consultative process is not the end in itself because some stakeholders may not have participated. In Zambia, we have freedom of speech. Therefore, anytime you feel like something is going wrong, you are at liberty to raise the issue, even when it relates to policy.


The people who feel were not consulted are free to voice out their concerns. So, the process does not preclude anyone from raising issues on policy or on the curriculum. Again, what we need to understand here is that there was a question in Parliament on Friday last week by Hon. Pilila Jere. It was a very important question that sought the Government’s stance on the matter, and guidance was provided by Her Honour the Vice-President. If I look at my record of reactions that from the people, it is like they welcomed the guidance by Her Honour the Vice-President. Everybody welcomed the dialogue route. We need to involve stakeholders, again, in identifying areas where we need to do some tweaks in the curriculum, and that is normal. It is just a normal process.


Mr Speaker, so, to come today and say that we need to give preconditions in terms of suspending Comprehensive Sexuality Education will not help Zambians. We want to further develop the curriculum and we are not going to do that by suspending what is happening. There are so many things we need to consider. There are implications to suspending Comprehensive Sexuality Education and those implications have to be analysed. There are many people who are going to suffer as a result of the suspension and in addition, jobs are at stake. The commitments we have made with regard to health and education outcomes will be at stake. We will not attain those goals by 2030. So, there are so many things at stake, and so, it is in this regard that, from my perspective, I do not support the Motion.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Nakachinda (Nominated): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank you for the opportunity to add a voice to the debate on this Motion.


Sir, I acknowledge and I fully agree with the submission of the previous speaker, Hon. Mecha. Suffice it to say that I note that arising from the revelation that came through the Motion that was moved last year by Hon. Dr Malama, bringing out revelations on political parties that are members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) groups, you will notice that the debates on the Floor of the House are basically revealing the attitude of such political parties regarding issues that border on morality and the development of our children, particularly subjects that are sensitive such as sex education.


Sir, I think the guidance that Her Honour the Vice-President provided in response to a question raised last Friday was sufficient. She mentioned that the Government was going to consider looking at the issues that are being raised by citizens on this matter through different stakeholders. It goes to say that the Government is a listening Government and it is listening to what the people are saying.


Sir, I agree with Hon. Mecha, who said that when it comes to policy matters on programmes of this nature that have to develop over a period of time where you have to assess the impact, it is only prudent that the Government does not take a rigid position, but continues to assess and evaluate these programmes. If the programme is eventually found to be inimical to the moral fibre of our society, as enshrined in the Constitution of Zambia, and also by way of the declaration of Zambia being a Christian Nation, as human beings, we have the right to change our minds even when we may have committed ourselves to a particular programme. To that effect, I think, the route of dialogue is what we encourage. 


Sir, Hon. Dr Kopulande, just like many other stakeholders, is basically privileged to have been elected as a Member of Parliament. Therefore, he has added a voice to the on-going debate by moving this Motion to urge the Government to put in place immediate measures to review this programme so that it carries with it our principles and values that are enshrined in the Constitution. It will also carry with it Christian values that will make sure that the information that our children are given acts as a catalyst to develop a morally upright society that will contribute positively to the development of this country. To that effect, I adopt what Hon. Mecha has indicated that the route to be taken is dialogue and that continued consultation must go on.


Sir, through what Her Honour the Vice-President indicated in one of the sessions last week, I think, the Government should speed up that process so that all stakeholders are engaged and that the information and assessments that have been made can be tabled so that these things can be put to rest and we can move on.


Mr Speaker, I think there is a subtle attempt to use the noble intentions of the Government to try to introduce certain alien abominable virtues, particularly groups such as the LGBT groups that are celebrating the introduction of this programme. There is a need for us to raise the red flag and put such manoeuvres to a stop. With that submission, I urge the Government to consider moving in quickly on the issue of dialogue on this matter.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Ng’onga (Kaputa): Mr Speaker, I thank you for this opportunity to add a word to the debate on this Motion on the Floor. To begin with, like many other debaters, I do not support the Motion to suspend the teaching of Comprehensive Sexuality Education in schools for the purposes of consultations.


Sir, let me start by defining Comprehensive Sexuality Education, as indicated by Wikipedia. Comprehensive Sexuality Education is an education or introduction method based on the curriculum that aims to give students the knowledge, attitude, skills and values to make appropriate and healthy choices in their sexual lives.


Mr Speaker, I know for sure that others have indicated that the consultations in 2013 were ably carried out. I also asked a number of people who are in the education sector concerning this particular subject and a number of them affirmed that consultations were made. Unfortunately, in this country, there is a tendency to conclude that everybody was not consulted when the word by some groupings is not carried. We can see all this in some issues that we are grappling with whereby people say that they were not consulted even after very extensive consultations.


Mr Speaker, the teachers who are in the education sector are also parents. They are not only teachers but also parents to our children. In fact, they uphold the same Christian values that we, ourselves, uphold. So, if this particular curriculum had issues that were inimical to our children’s well-being, I am sure that these teachers would have been the first ones to raise the red flag. In fact, even all of us will agree that when we were in school, we were taught about body parts as early as Grade 6 and Grade 7. At that particular age, we were being prepared to face the world as we grew up. I am sure that there are very good things for our children in Comprehensive Sexuality Education, but we should also be mindful of the fact that the Government of the day has not refused the need to continue revising or to create a body that will review these issues. Therefore, if we support the Motion to suspend the teaching of Comprehensive Sexuality Education until we have actually consulted, we would be taking ourselves backwards.


Mr Speaker, I fully agree with the people who are under the education sector that they are ready for this particular issue and that they are able to do what they are doing now in order to teach our children what is beneficial and what would prepare them for the life ahead of them even in the issues of sexuality.


Mr Speaker, if there are any issues that are unchristian in the curriculum, the people in the education sector, who have the mandate to educate our children, should raise that red flag and all of us, as Christians, will support them. We are all Christians in this country and we do not doubt ourselves. Therefore, we cannot go backwards. Let us move ahead and give our children what they deserve.


Sir, with those few words, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to debate.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Mukosa (Chinsali): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to add my voice to the debate on the Motion on the Floor moved by the hon. Member for Chembe.


Sir, the teaching of Comprehensive Sexuality Education in schools has both advantages and disadvantages. Proponents of Comprehensive Sexuality Education suggest that every young person will one day make a decision about sexual and reproductive health. Research shows that the majority of adolescents lack the knowledge required to make that decision responsibly and this leaves them vulnerable to coercion, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and unwanted pregnancies.


Therefore, Mr Speaker, if Comprehensive Sexuality Education is taught in schools, young people will protect their health, well-being and dignity, and if they are educated, they will be able to make more informed decisions.


However, Mr Speaker, the people who are against the teaching of Comprehensive Sexuality Education say that when children are taught about sexual activities at a young age, they will want to practice what they are being taught. For example, if children are taught about wearing condoms, they will want to practice that and this can be very dangerous to them.


Mr Speaker, the hon. Member for Chembe, who has moved the Motion, is not suggesting that the Government completely stops teaching Comprehensive Sexuality Education, but he is urging that its teaching be suspended in the meantime until wider consultations are conducted. The reason he has moved this Motion is that, in the recent past, sections of the public have raised concerns about the motives of teaching Comprehensive Sexuality Education in schools. This means the reason people have been talking about it so much is that they do not know what the motives behind its teaching are. So, if the teaching of Comprehensive Sexuality Education in schools is suspended, there will be wider consultations and people will be more prepared when it is finally introduced, after agreeing to it. Therefore, I support the Motion urging the Government to suspend the teaching of Comprehensive Sexuality Education in schools.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Mutale (Chitambo): Mr Speaker, thank you very much for according me this opportunity to comment on the Motion on the Floor.


Sir, I do not support this Motion because the Patriotic Front (PF) Government means well for the people of Zambia. I know that the PF Government got the mandate to govern from the people –


Mr Speaker: Order!


(Debate adjourned)



The House adjourned at 1656 hours until 1430 hours on Thursday, 8th October, 2020.