Debates- Wednesday, 7th November, 2012

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Wednesday, 7th November, 2012

The House met at 1430 hours

[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]






254.  Mr Chungu (Luanshya) asked the Minister of Tourism and Art:

(a)    what measures had been taken to upgrade the hospitality facilities in Livingstone to meet international standards in view of the co-hosting of the 2013 United Nations World Tourism Conference by Zambia and Zimbabwe; and

(b)    what economic benefits were expected from the conference. 

The Deputy Minister of Tourism and Arts (Mr Mukata): Mr Speaker, the PF Government attaches great importance to the standards in the tourism sector. In this regard, my ministry is implementing the classification and grading programmes in all accommodation enterprises in Livingstone. This exercise is expected to see over 100 accommodation enterprises inspected, classified and graded according to international standards and practices. In addition, my ministry has embarked on sensitisation activities for tourism operators in the tourist capital in order to enhance standards and efficiency in service delivery with focus on quality products and enforcement of standards in the accommodation sub-sector.
Mr Speaker, the hosting of the 20th Session of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO)   Conference in Livingstone will bring a stream of benefits such as increased income to business houses in the tourist capital, improvement in infrastructure development, increase in tourist facilities and increased employment to surrounding communities. Other economic benefits would include stimulation of investment and re-investment in the local industries, such as the creative industries. The event would address the challenge of making Zambia a sub-regional hub for conferencing and growing our international exposure in tourism. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you.  

Mr Ng’onga (Kaputa): Mr Speaker, will the standardisation and classification of accommodation facilities be rolled out to other tourism facilities in the country? If so, when will this be done? 

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, it is only because the question put centred on Livingstone. Otherwise, this programme is nationwide. In the current Act, there is a blanket classification of ‘hotels’. In fact, there is a statutory instrument (SI) that is coming through in 2013 to isolate and classify the housing establishment in an attempt to differentiate among lodges, hotels, camps sites and hostels with a view to improve accommodation. Currently, however, we are only preparing.  

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Hamudulu (Siavonga): Mr Speaker, I appreciate the fact that this Government intends to take this programme nationwide. However, which other towns in the country have been specifically positioned to benefit from the UNWTO Conference and preparations being made, apart from Livingstone? 

Mr Mukata: Sir, the fact that the UNWTO Conference will be in Livingstone does not limit the entry of anyone who wants to find opportunities to the people of that city. To this effect, and as you may have noticed from the Budget, the hon. Minister of Finance has given a waiver or tax relief till December, 2013, on the procurement of hotel-related or tourism-related materials to upgrade hotel accommodation. If, therefore, there are people who would want to benefit by improving their infrastructure, they are entitled. The Ministry of Tourism and Arts has inspectorate departments, not only in Lusaka, but across the country, that inspect and ensure that licensed tourism establishments comply with standards. 

Mr Speaker, I thank you. 

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Speaker, in terms of quality and room space, how does Zambia, Livingstone in particular, compare with our counterparts across the Victoria Falls since this conference is being co-hosted by Zambia and Zimbabwe? 

The Minister of Tourism and Arts (Mrs Masebo): Mr Speaker, I wish to thank the hon. Member of Parliament for Mazabuka Central for a very good question. However, I owe this House an explanation. I have taken long and I want to seek your indulgence to bring a ministerial statement to explain the UNWTO Conference so that I give the right answers to the questions. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Mr Speaker: Very well.  

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

Mr Livune (Katombola): Mr Speaker, allow me to welcome to the House the son of my father, Hon. Kambwili. 


Mr Livune: Sir, grading and inspections alone may not …

Mr Speaker: Why can you not just say your brother?


Mr Livune: I am trying to help the hon. Minister of Finance to know that he is the son of my father.


Mr Livune: Sir, the grading and inspections alone will not help much. Is there deliberate short-term funding reserved for people in the hospitality industry in Livingstone and Kazungula to access so that they can quickly refurbish and upgrade the rooms in these towns to host this important conference?

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, again, I would like to seek the indulgence of the House, through you, to answer all these important questions at a later stage because all the issues raised are in the ministerial statement.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker: Very well. Let us move on to the next question.

Hon. Member: Yes!

255. Mr Chisala (Chilubi) asked the Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication what measures the ministry had taken to compel operators of unlicensed taxis to be registered.

The Deputy Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication (Colonel Kaunda): Mr Speaker, the ministry, through the Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA), has been engaging stakeholders on the issue of unlicensed taxis. During the stakeholders’ meeting held in Kitwe on 3rd April, 2012, it was established that the colour code, which is stipulated in the Statutory Instrument (SI) No. 115 of 2000, was a hindrance to operators licensing the taxis because of the cost implications of painting the vehicles sky blue.

Sir, SI No. 115 of 2000, titled, “The Roads and Road Traffic Act (Public Service Vehicle) (Licensing and Use) (Amendment) Regulations, 2000 prescribes the colour that public service vehicles (PSVs) must be painted in. Sub-regulation 1 of Regulation 14A provides that:

“Subject to Sub-regulation 1, all PSVs shall be painted in sky blue colours as follows:

(a)    the whole of a taxi cab shall be painted the sky blue colour; and

(b)    minibuses and buses shall be painted up to window level.”

Sub-regulation 2 of Regulation 14A exempts luxury coaches from the provisions of Sub-Regulation 1. Further, Sub-regulation 3 provides that:

“Any owner of a PSV who fails to comply with Sub-regulation 1 commits an offence and shall be liable, upon conviction, to a fine not exceeding one thousand five hundred penalty units equivalent to (K270, 000)”.

Mr Speaker, in order to facilitate establishment of sustainable business and jobs among for Zambians, the ministry is in the process of revising SI No. 115 of 2000 in order to relax the requirements of the colour code. A cheaper way of making PSVs identifiable will be introduced in the new regulations. This will, however, not be at the expense of road safety.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Kalaba: On Zambia!


Mr Chisala: Mr Speaker, I wish to thank the hon. Deputy Minister for that explicit answer. However, I wish to know whether the current registration conditions are likely to be reviewed in the near future to allow as many taxi drivers as possible to get registered.

Colonel Kaunda: Mr Speaker, that is the aim of revising the regulations. We want as many of our people as possible to register their vehicles without compromising the safety and identification of the vehicles. Yes, we are in the process of doing that.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Habeenzu (Chikankata): Mr Speaker, what do I need to qualify for a PSV licence?

Mr Speaker: I hope you are not changing careers!


Colonel Kaunda: Mr Speaker, firstly, the vehicle must be road-worthy and be registered with a red number plate so that you qualify to be a Public Service Vehicle (PSV) driver. The driver must also have a PSV driving licence. After that, you now qualify to be a taxi or bus operator.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Chisanga (Mkushi South): Mr Speaker, is the hon. Minister aware that there are a number of taxis in the rural districts which are not registered, hence, the Government losing a lot of money? If he is aware, what is his plan?

Colonel Kaunda: Mr Speaker, we are very much aware and, between ourselves, the RTSA and the police, we try very much to apprehend those who are operating unregistered taxis. However, as you know, it is a very big country and there are few police officers around. So, sometimes, in the rural areas where there are no police officers, taxi operators who are illegal do get away with it.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Speaker, seeing that the PF has legalised illegalities, such as street vending, where you do not need licences to trade, …

Hon. Opposition Members: hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo: … how committed is it to making sure that PSVs are licensed because this is a matter of life and death?

Colonel Kaunda: Mr Speaker, we are very committed. I, personally, have been on road patrol with the RTSA so that these things are properly regulated. We want to ensure that the lives of our people are not compromised. So, we are committed, Hon. Nkombo.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr L. Zimba (Kapiri-Mposhi): Mr Speaker, I just want to make a follow-up question on the question about PSVs that my colleague had asked. He asked what the qualifications for somebody to obtain a PSV licence was since it takes too long to come out. I think that was the question.

Colonel Kaunda: No, Mr Speaker, it was not that question. What he asked was about what he requires to be a PSV operator, and I think I explained.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central): Mr Speaker, we are aware that a group of PF party cadres who were running taxis refused to paint the colours and explained that it is expensive to do so, and they are still running around with them without painting. What is your ministry doing about this since this is their livelihood?

Colonel Kaunda: Mr Speaker, this issue of unpainted taxis goes a long way back. It is something we found and are dealing with. So, in the very near future, there will be rules and regulations that will govern anybody who drives without having the car painted, including Hon. Muntanga. 


Hon. Government Member: Especially UPND cadres!

Colonel Kaunda: So, it has nothing to do with party cadres. It is about the safety and well-being of Zambians. They must travel in safe and good hands, and we are facilitating that.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


256. Mr Sililo (Mulobezi) asked the Minister of Tourism and Arts when the Government would crop wild animals, especially elephants, in Mulobezi Game Management Area (GMA) to reduce on the increased human-animal conflict in the area.

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, cropping involves the killing of a significant number of animals. Therefore, cropping should only be undertaken when animal population data are high enough to support the exercises without undermining the survival of the animals. In this regard, the Government will not crop animals in Mulobezi GMA, but control problem animals by killing those animals that threaten people’s lives and property. The use of the word ‘crop’ is wrong because cropping means killing animals for economic purposes when you want to sell. The correct word should have been culling. We got caught up in the question. So, we followed it up. I thought that I should request that, perhaps, in future questions, the correct nomenclature should be used.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Sing’ombe (Dundumwezi): Mr Speaker, what is the population of elephants in the Mulobezi GMA?

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, as of 2011, the population of elephants was 824.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Hamudulu: Mr Speaker, as I speak, I have a very heavy heart. Last week, I asked a question which was similar to what I am going to ask now.

Sir, yesterday, a young man full of life was mulled by a crocodile in Siavonga and the body was only recovered a few hours ago. Apart from measures that you normally take in the GMAs and national parks, what measures do you have in place to stop or, at least, reduce this human/animal conflict in areas that are not GMAs or national parks?

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, I am sorry about this sad development in Siavonga. However, I would like to re-iterate what I said last time; that there is a need for awareness in our people, especially those living in areas where there are wild animals, including crocodiles.

Sir, sometimes, because of lack of information in the communities, we are having accidents that can easily be avoided, but I want to assure the hon. Member of Parliament for Siavonga that, in fact, the last time he asked this question, I followed it up by having a meeting with officials from the Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) who assured me that they would put up a deliberate programme for Siavonga following the persistent complaints from that area relating to human/animal conflict.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Ng’onga: Mr Speaker, is it possible for the hon. Minister to move the elephants to other national parks like Mweru-Wantipa or Nsumbu where we need additional animals?

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, in fact, that is a more feasible exercise as opposed to culling animals. You may be aware that in 1970, we had about 100, 000 elephants in Zambia. Currently, we only have a population of 28, 000 countrywide. So, quite frankly, we have a potential disaster on our hands. Currently, we have animals crossing into Zambia from Botswana and Zimbabwe. So, we would encourage the opening of corridors so that the animals can go inland. This is an exercise that is being undertaken. To airlift these animals would be quite costly. There are other means, such as encouraging the animals to get inland.

I thank you, Sir,.

Mr Mutelo (Lukulu West): Mr Speaker, in Lukulu West, Kakulunda, in particular, people draw water from the Zambezi River, which is infested with crocodiles. Bearing in mind that thirty lives have already been lost, I would like to know what kind of sensitisation these people would need to protect themselves from these reptiles since there is no borehole and people depend on the Zambezi River for water. What are you doing to ensure that more lives are not lost?

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, human/animal conflicts appear to have increased because, as the hon. Minister indicated, human settlements have increasingly encroached on wildlife habitats, thereby increasing contact between humans and wildlife. However, the Government, through ZAWA, has taken the following measures to minimise human/animal conflict:

(a)    development of the General Management Plan (GMP) for Mulobezi and other areas, such as the hon. Member’s area, through the stakeholders’ participatory approach for guiding economic settlements and conservation activities in respective areas. It is expected that, when stakeholders abide by the guidelines and zoning scheme in the GMP, human/animal conflicts will be minimised because encroachment on wildlife habitats will be avoided;

(b)    ZAWA field officers have been mandated to kill problem animals – and, in the ZAWA parlance, they refer to it as control – that threaten human lives and property. The officers assess and control problem animals, accordingly;

(c)    ZAWA management, through its extension services in the GMAs, conducts sensitisation programmes in which villagers are advised to avoid confrontations with animals by avoiding settling in wildlife corridors and habitats; and

(d)    villagers have been advised and trained to use methods that scare away animals, especially elephants, such as the use of chilli fences or burning chilli with elephant dung around their crop fields. In instances of crocodile attacks, there are similar interventions that are applied when dealing with such kind of animals.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Livune: Mr Speaker, how accurate is the figure of the population of elephants in the Mulobezi GMA given by the hon. Deputy Minister, considering that, due to their nomadic nature, these animals only belong to us when they are on our soil but, when they leave, they cease to be ours? So, how accurate is the hon. Minister’s figure?

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, we are as accurate as we can humanly be. I agree with the fact that elephants belong to a country where they go. Currently, the population in Zambia is quite high, for example, in Livingstone where they are running to, away from the safari hunting taking place on the Zimbabwean side. However, there is a period in which you are able to assess. There is a mechanism which ZAWA officers, who are specialised in this kind of data collection, use in order to verify how many elephants there are in Zambia. In the same vein, Zimbabwe will give you a figure. So, yes, there is some scientific method of determining the population of animals.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Siamunene (Sinazongwe): Mr Speaker, the problem of crocodiles in Zambian waters is very prevalent in places like Sinazongwe where we have, at least, one person or two killed in a month. Does the ministry not have people who can hunt these animals down as a way of alleviating this problem?

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, the hunters are there and, in fact, you could go beyond that. In instances where you do not have game scouts nearby, you could report to the police or even the citizens in the communities who have firearms can intervene to that extent, but …


Mr Mukata: Can I be allowed to finish? Of course, within your communities, you will identify which crocodile belongs to which headman but, generally speaking, in an emergency situation, it is part of self-defence. Even the ZAWA Act is very succinct in those respects. If a lion gets into your farm, you will shoot it in self-defence but, again, we have statutory interventions which will establish whether there was, in fact, a threat. So, if you just go and shoot a crocodile under the guise that it was threatening you when, in fact, you want to use its skin to make some shoes, then you will be in trouble. We are talking of a dangerous situation and that will be explained when officers investigate the matter. 

Sir, there are a number of interventions. For instance, we have game scouts if there is proliferation. In Chiawa, for instance, we have problems of crocodiles because farmers close corridors to the water. So, people cannot access the waters and they have very limited or narrow areas where they can do so. These are issues that can be dealt with even through the local authorities. As I indicated earlier, this is an issue of stakeholders coming together to deal with these issues. However, we are always on hand to get our scouts to come and shoot, as long as you tell us that the animals are not yours property.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, most Zambians, especially those in rural areas like Lukulu and Siavonga do not own firearms. Also, most of the victims in these incidents are innocent citizens who go to either bath or draw water. Is it, therefore, the intention of the Government to inform these people that they must find someone in the community with a firearm to be on stand-by and ready to intervene in the event of an animal attack each time they go to draw water or bath?

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, not at all. There are a number of other interventions that we employ, and I indicated that ZAWA officers educate and sensitise the communities on this matter. Some people are attacked by animals because they go picnicking and swimming in unsafe havens, for example, where crocodiles lay their eggs. So, there is a need to have designated safe sites for social activities in communities. However, when there is an escalation of animal attacks in an area, it is only prudent that we bring that to the attention of the experts. On the other hand, it is not for me to say whether or not a person will be attacked by a python, crocodile or any other animal. I will be talking beyond my means of prediction. So, I will leave that to God.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Reverend Sikwela (Livingstone): Mr Speaker, in Zimbabwe and Botswana, elephants are cropped. However, when these animals cross over into Zambia, we are told that we just control them, instead of cropping them. Now, how helpful is this arrangement to the Zambian people who lose their lives and property, yet, at any given time, these elephants cross back into Zimbabwe and Botswana?

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, the trend of migration of the animals in question is not en masse. A good number of animals remain in certain places throughout the year. Elephants move in groups, not clans. For instance, it is not the whole population of Zambian elephants that treks into Zimbabwe. Different groups will go in different directions. I was just trying to dissect the different means of handling these animals. If we are not careful, we will get misled in the way we use these terms. There are three words that we employ: ‘cropping’, ‘control’ and ‘culling’. Cropping is for commercial purposes. Culling is the intervention you employ when there is a population explosion of animals to avoid their spilling over into human settlements. I am talking about legal human settlements, not illegal ones. Control involves the management of problem animals. For instance, we want the animals that are coming from Botswana to stay here because that boosts our wildlife assets. We cannot have wildlife without animals. 

Sir, merely remembering that we once had animals does not mean that we have wildlife. We need those animals as assets for tourism. Without wildlife, there would be no need to even have ZAWA. So, we control animals when they become problematic by killing them selectively. However, it is not a carte blanche kind of situation where we kill a thousand elephants or so in the name of culling and trying to make our illegal settlements comfortable.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Speaker, I want the hon. Minister to clarify the two words ‘cropping’ and ‘culling’ very carefully. Can culling not be done for commercial purposes and cropping done for purposes other than commercial ones? I want that cleared.

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, of course, when there is a population explosion of animals, the main objective of culling is to avoid human/animal conflict. However, the resultant product from this exercise is sold. It does not mean that we have to burn or let the meat rot. However, the initial objective would be different. 

In the 1970s, this country had 100,000 elephants, and deliberate efforts were made to slaughter them for meat, which was sold for economic gain. This had nothing to do with human/animal conflicts. That is why I said we should employ these words selectively. If not, we will end up misleading each other. We are part of the international community. So, we have to be careful how we employ these words when we engage other people.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Katambo (Masaiti): Mr Speaker, how effective are chilli fences in controlling problematic animals, especially elephants, that threaten human life and property during the rainy season?

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, in fact, in Shang’ombo District of the Western Province, the Government is working with the Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF) on a community project that has employed that same technique, and I am happy to inform this august House that this project has worked very well. In the past, villagers could not keep fields or move at night. They had the same problems that we keep hearing about in other parts of the country. As I speak today, these villagers have managed to grow their crops. I visited them and was amazed by what I found. Maybe, we can sit down with hon. Members of Parliament who have this problem and get some willing co-operating partners to finance some community projects and see whether we can replicate the Shang’ombo project elsewhere.

I thank you, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mufalali (Senanga): Mr Speaker, I heard the hon. Minister give the figure for the population of elephants. Could she also indicate the head count for crocodiles …


Mr Mufalali: … because we have so many of them in the boundary areas of Sesheke/Mulobezi. They have increased so much that they come out of the water and chase children.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mukata: Mr Speaker, I notice that the hon. Member was much more concerned with elephants initially. Maybe, he has received a short message service (SMS) that there is a proliferation of crocodiles in his area and he now wants information on crocodiles. I can always advance that information because we have those statistics. For instance, we even have details of how many were cropped or culled as at 2011. That is how efficient we are.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, …

Hon. PF Members: On a point of order.

Mr Mwiimbu: Oh, you want a point of order? I will raise it.


Mr Speaker: He will indicate when he is ready.


Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, is it possible for the ministry to establish a – is it ‘cordom’ or ‘condom’ line of chilli?


Mr Mwiimbu: The one which was put up in the Western Province. It is ‘cordon’? Oh, sorry, Mr Speaker.

Mr Mutelo: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mutelo: Mr Chairperson, His Excellency the President, in his speech to this August House, said that we should always be factual. In answering my question on the Katunda/Lukulu Road, His Honour the Vice-President said that works on that road have been budgeted for in the Yellow Book. I have gone through the Yellow Book and discovered that the Katunda/Lukulu Road is not there. Was His Honour the Vice-President in order to inform the House that this road is in the Yellow Book when it is not? 

I seek your ruling, Sir.

Mr Speaker: I do appreciate that we would like to expedite the approval of the Budget, but I would urge the hon. Member to wait until we reach that particular vote so that question will be put to the right.

The hon. Member for Monze Central may continue.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, when the point of order was raised, I was trying to find out from the hon. Minister whether her ministry could consider establishing a cordon line using chilli along the boundaries of the game parks in order to safeguard the lives of our people, instead of leaving this particular matter in the hands of poor villagers who may not have the capacity to put up the cordon line.

Mrs Masebo: Mr Speaker, when I was giving the example of Shang’ombo, I was corrected by my sister here that it is the Sioma-Ngwezi area where the Government is working with donors in support of a community project. 

Sir, one of the weaknesses in our policies is that we want to carry out programmes without the participation of the communities that are affected everyday by the problems we want to address.  The hon. Member for Monze Central should appreciate the fact that, if communities are included in the implementation of these programmes, they will be sustainable. So, it would not help me, as an hon. Minister in Lusaka, working together with ZAWA, to just go there,  put a line and then come back to sit down in Lusaka, and expect things to work. We finance such programmes and train the communities that implement them. I disagree that our villagers are poor. In fact, they are very rich because they own those resources. What is needed is to support them with skills to address the problems caused by animals. I hope I have answered the hon. Member’s question. 

Thank you, Sir.





(Debate resumed)

VOTE 06 – (Public Service Commission – Office of the President – K7, 902, 458, 158).

Brigadier-General Dr Chituwo (Mumbwa): Mr Chairperson, thank you very much for giving me this opportunity to contribute to this very important budget line.

Mr Chairperson, to start with, I would like to say that the K7.9 billion or so which has been allocated to this very important commission is inadequate. As we are all aware, the many tasks which the commission has to undertake include appointments, confirmations, promotions and retirements. In view of the fact that we have seen an increase in the establishment of the Civil Service, there is no reason the amount should not be increased. We have already had an addition of at least fifteen districts, which entails that there is a need for the commission to carry out audits, assessments and timely confirmations. It is not possible for it to adequately carry out these important tasks in order to keep the Civil Service motivated. 

Mr Chairperson, of late, there have been wholesale dismissals and retirements, which means that there is a need to go back to the drawing board and restart the process of appointments and confirmations. This requires a lot of work. 

Sir, I note that, out of all the PSs the PF Government started with a year ago, only two have remained. The entire cadre at the PS level has been fired or retired on various grounds. Surely, as a young nation, this is a waste of human resource. Could we not adopt another mode? The political change of leadership in Commonwealth countries has been challenging for a long time. Despite that, we have never heard of a government going on an orgy of firing its own citizens. Could the Government not look at things in another way? Perhaps, the perceived incompetence arises from inadequate training. Surely, these men and women, who have served the country to the best of their ability, can be re-oriented by re-training them. 

Sir, we have the National Institute for Public Administration (NIPA), which has served this country very well. Why not take that route so that we can retain the institutional memories in many of our ministries and spending agencies so that the people of Zambia can be served better? As it is, even if the PF Government is in a hurry to implement its programmes and policies, we will have bottle-necks because of the lack of technical know-how and continuity in the Civil Service.

Mr Chairperson, what we need is shared leadership. A leader must create a team that will deliver. A leader must be, among other things, flexible, adaptable and able to listen to their juniors so that, with a shared vision, they can accomplish or meet the goals they have set themselves. There is, therefore, no need for the Government of the day to feel that it is sitting on an MMD volcano whenever it looks at the Civil Service. It is unnecessary …

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Brigadier-General Dr Chituwo: … because a leader has the ability and capacity to shape the team he or she is leading. After all, if there are clear tasks and performance indicators, the Civil Service will always serve the Government of the day. If the civil servants do not meet the benchmarks, then they must be fired. However, in the absence of performance assessment and indicators, on what basis are these young men and women being fired left, right and centre?

Mr Chairperson, this might mean that there is a lack of leadership skills at the political level. I would like to believe that His Honour the Vice-President is not allergic to orderliness. If that is so, he should appreciate that the Civil Service thrives on order. All that the Civil Service needs is guidance, direction and supervision. I was happy to note that, when His Excellency the President came to this House, he emphasised the need for monitoring …

Mr Muntanga: On a point of order, Sir.

The Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Chairperson, are the hon. Deputy Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication, the hon. Minister of Justice and the hon. Minister of Agriculture in order to keep crossing the line without even bowing towards your Chair, as per procedure, and running and dodging as though they are in some hide and seek game? Are they in order to be that disorderly in the House?

The Chairperson: Well, maybe, just as reminder, before getting back to your seat after some movement, you are supposed to curtsy to the Chair before you sit down. He is just reminding us. Therefore, let us take that point of order into account.

Hon. Member for Mumbwa, you may continue.

Brigadier-General Dr Chituwo: Mr Chairperson, maybe, the premature hiring and firing is an indication of the need for training in leadership skills on both sides of the equation. My desire is to see programmes and projects implemented in our constituencies. Can programmes be implemented well if personnel keep changing in the Civil Service like the case is in the Central Province, where we now have the fifth PS since the PF took over power? People leave that office even before you can congratulate them. It is very obvious that little can done in such a province. Why this instability? Surely, we can do better.

The hon. Minister of Finance, who was my idol when I was a student, was so visionary that he supported us as students to attend various conferences. He would say that we would be the leaders of tomorrow. He did not look at what tribe anyone of us was. Unfortunately, we have seen this dangerous trend taking root in Zambia. Surely, there must be intelligent men and women from all regions of our country. Why not exploit them? Collectively, we can achieve much more. We should not draw personnel for the Civil Service from a limited regional base.

Mr Chairperson, with the increased work as result of instability, it is important that the PSC has enough resources. It needs to have vehicles, human resource and modern computers in order to keep abreast with the various changes.

Mr Chairperson, on one hand, if there are set programmes in terms of training and promotions based on various examinations, as it used to be in the past, the work of the commission will be easier. There will be very little supervision needed. The commission will only need to audit the work that has been set for a particular quarter or year. If we do not do things that way, I am afraid, we will come back next year with so many questions regarding the failure by the Civil Service to do certain things.  

The Civil Service needs support not only in terms of leadership, but finances too. Therefore, the disbursement of funds must be timely. Sir, the CDF was released this month. Therefore, considering the procedures involved in its use, obviously, that money cannot be expended this year, meaning that those small bridges, classrooms, VIP toilets and whatever the communities wanted to spend that money on will not be worked on. Doing things that way does not contribute to the improvement of the living standard of our people.

Mr Chairperson, I further want to add that, maybe, the PSC, in its form, requires reformation, too, because it is too centralised. I am sure, it could do its work better if it decentralised so that it could reach public workers sooner than it does currently. If it did that, it would be keeping in line with the Government’s policy of decentralisation and the implementation of Government programmes would be done on time.

Mr Chairperson, lastly, I am not sure about the role of the PSC in the appointment of public workers. As I have already stated, about ten letters have already been written for appointments, transfers and dismissals in Central Province in a very short time. Surely, that is unproductive. Could there not be some order so that these men and women supervise their officers in their various provinces and portfolios?

Mr Chairperson, without order, I am afraid that we will just keep singing the same song. Fortunately for the politicians, they can always blame the civil servants, but the civil servants have nowhere to turn to. We, therefore, are not getting the complete picture. It is our responsibility, as politicians, to support and guide our juniors. Only then shall we serve the people of Zambia in the required manner.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central): Mr Chairperson, in supporting this, I wish to state that the money allocated to it is too little. Seven billion kwacha is nothing. This commission is not like the ones which were created to look at energy or the Mongu riots and killings. It is an established commission that should be responsible for issues to do with the Civil Service. The biggest employer in the country is the Government and, therefore, the one body that should employ and promote civil servants is the PSC.

Mr Chairperson, I want to state that the PF Government is destroying the PSC. It is not allowing the commission to do its job. The PSC is the one that should advise on how and when you employ. I want to state that this problem did not start in the PF Government. It started sometime in the past. In the United National Independence Party (UNIP) days, when there was the One-party State, the Government took over the responsibility of the PSC. As a result, a number of Governors who were employed or appointed were not even given letters of employment by the PSC because it was not aware of their appointment. This resulted in a situation in which Governors who claimed their pensions after they left employment were told that they had not been civil servants. Only one person, the late Mr Daniel Simuloka, got his benefits because he had insisted on having a letter of appointment from the PSC. When his job ended, he had a letter to prove that he had been a civil servant.

Mr Chairperson, the same thing is happening to District Commissioners (DCs). We were told that these people are supposed to be civil servants, yet they are not employed by the PSC. Initially, President Sata was right to ask the PSC to employ DCs. However, this was reversed. People went to the President and told him that he could not allow civil servants to take over the positions of DCs because these positions are political and need to be filled by party cadres. What followed is that even people who lost parliamentary seats have been appointed as DCs in the same areas, and the PSC is not aware about this. 

Sir, most DCs cry for money when they leave office, yet they are not civil servants with formal letters of appointment. When you are in the Government, you have no right to appoint people. It is the PSC, that does. If you are not satisfied with the PSC because it is not decentralised, raise the money to enable it do so. Let us give it K1 billion per province because that is the minimum amount needed to tour a province. The amount of money you should have given the Public Service Commission is not less than K12 billion because staff there are supposed to travel to each province to look at the Government employees. What we are doing is paying lip service to a Government organ that is critical for our civil servants.

Mr Chairperson, Permanent Secretaries (PSs) should be people who have risen through the ranks to that position in the organisation. In the past, we had people rise from being mere Administrative Officers (AOs) to Assistant Secretaries (ASs), Deputy Permanent Secretaries (DPSs) and then PSs. 

Sir, the MMD Government thought UNIP was bad and started appointing people from outside the Civil Service as PSs on contract. Do you know what happens when you do that? Some of the people appointed as DCs do not even understand the movement of files. That is why they say that offices have become registries. The Government has appointed people on contract into positions they are not qualified to be, yet it expects to have an efficient Civil Service. When a person is employed on contract, he starts to prepare to go away. He has to get money so that he can build houses because he knows that he will leave his job after three years. You make these civil servants to be uneasy in their jobs. They have no job security. 

Mr Chairperson, now we are crying that civil servants are pro-MMD. This means that anyone you are going to bring is pro-PF. What, then, are we doing? We are going to have another system when another Government comes. When the United Party for National Development (UPND) comes into power, we will fire all those being recruited now because they will be smelling PF. 

Sir, President Sata had promised to uphold the Civil Service, and someone must take charge. Fund the PSC adequately and let it do its job. If the people are not working properly, introduce efficiency. Currently, a few hon. Ministers are running, even when they do not mean to run, because they are scared that President Sata might fire them tomorrow. That should not happen to the Civil Service. If you are a politician, people in the Civil Service know that you may not stay long at a particular ministry. Hence, they will make sure that they give you a lot of imprest for you to travel. They will entice you and tell you that you are a very good person. After a month, they will report that the hon. Minister has accumulated K100 million worth of unretired imprest. Then what happens to you? We have had hon. Ministers in the former Government who owed K100 million, and an hon. Deputy Minister for a certain province went to court for the same offence. He said that he had been given the money by the PS. 

Sir, we should allow the PSC to operate autonomously and run examinations to assess people’s suitability to be in the Civil Service. People should be able to understand the Government.

Mr Chairperson, I worry so much about the loss of files in many ministries, and this is getting very serious. It is not only the PSC that is affected. The Teaching Service Commission (TSC) has collapsed and the Government has taken over the responsibilities of the Police and Prisons Service Commission (PPSC). The Government has decided to appoint people anyhow. We should allow the PSC to employ and discipline people according to its regulations. The people who have been fired after working for years as PSs will have to be paid. Have we considered how much money we are going to pay all these people we have been firing? Where is the money for this? The hon. Minister of Finance, will you manage to pay people every time because they are being fired? 

Mr Chairperson, a person was employed for a while as PS but, after the maize issue in the Southern province, he was retired in public interest.

Hon. Government Members: Who?

Mr Muntanga: You know who you retired. That person must be paid his money. Did the PSC study that case? Is it following these cases? That is why I am contending that the money we are giving to the PSC is not enough. If I had the power, I would tell you to raise it to K12 billion so that it can perform.

Mr Chairperson, the hon. Minister of Finance was a principal officer at State House, and knows the need to follow proper rules. He knows that administrative work must be done properly. It is for this reason that I want the PSC adequately supported. This idea of firing people left, right and centre; hire and fire, should be done away with. There is money for training at almost every budget line you look. Use it to orient the Public Service, using the commission, to ensure that they follow the rules, such as financial regulations and the Public Service Orders. When I was working for the Government, there used to be a General Orders Book. It was like the Bible for a civil servant. I doubt if that book is still being printed now or the PSC even still enforces it. The people who have been put in these offices do not understand anything about the book. So, I urge the PSC to use this paltry money to start. It can do what the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) has done. The ECZ is only registering voters in Lusaka Central Constituency. The PSC should start by cleaning up its headquarters in Lusaka. People report for work at 0900 hours and leave their offices at 1600 hours. On Mondays, they report for work late and knock off early. On Fridays, they may report late and knock off after mid-day. You can hardly see an officer in the offices.

Mr Kapeya: On a point of order, Sir.

The Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Mr Kapeya: Mr Chairperson, is the hon. Member of Parliament for Kalomo Central in order to keep contradicting himself? At one stage, he said that we were dismissing people randomly but, at another stage, he said that the civil servants are lazy people because they report for work late and knock off early. 

I seek your serious ruling.

The Chairperson: Order!

As a reminder, the person debating now is number six, according to my record on this item. I think that he is expressing a view that can be corrected by the one who will wind up the debate.

Continue, please.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Chairperson, the job of checking whether people are reporting late for work or knocking off early is for the PSC. It should discipline them. However, if the hon. Minister wants to become a worker at the PSC and fire those who report late for work, he should go ahead. That is what I am saying.

Sir, I know that the hon. Minister who is talking was a civil servant himself and I do not think that he would have been happy to have been fired by the hon. Minister of Information and Broadcasting then. He retired, but does not want his friends to do the same. That is what is wrong. He is a senior civil servant who should understand that the PSC should take responsibility over the things that have gone wrong in the Civil Service.

Mr Chairperson, a number of hon. Ministers have never worked in the Civil Service. It is now that they are learning what it is to be a civil servant. You are in charge of civil servants, sitting in that office when you have never been one. You are lucky, Hon. Kalaba, if you are in the ministry as a civil servant. 

The Chairperson: Order!

Mr Muntanga: The others are not.

I thank you, Sir.

The Vice-President (Dr Scott): Mr Chairperson, I would like to thank the six hon. Members …


The Chairperson: Order!

The Vice-President: … who contributed to this debate. Much of what they said will be taken on board by us.

Sir, several hon. Members complained that the amount of money given was too low. It is actually a 46 per cent increase on last year’s allocation. That is more than average. No doubt, as the years go by, it will increase.

Mr Chairperson, I was alleged to have been a complainant to the Ministry of Finance about the small amount of money by Hon. Simbao. Mr Simbao must have been a very tricky kid at school. That is all I can think.


The Chairperson: Order! 

Your Honour the Vice-President, the use of the word ‘kid’, I think, is not very good. Can you continue, and use an appropriate word, please.

The Vice-President: Mr Chairperson, I substitute it with the word ‘child’ or ‘school child’.


Mr Simbao: On a point of order, Sir.

The Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Normally, we do not encourage points of order when a person is winding-up debate. However, since you have been mentioned, I will allow you to raise the point of order.

Mr Simbao: Mr Chairperson, I have never risen on a point of order because it is not my habit to do so. However, this one is very special. Is His Honour the Vice-President in order to confirm his earlier saying that he is an old dog who cannot be taught new tricks? I seek your serious ruling.


The Chairperson: Order!

It is very difficult for the Chair to make a ruling on that point of order because that point of order may itself be out of order.

His Honour the Vice-President, continue, please.


The Vice-President: Mr Chairperson, what I actually said, according to the verbatim record, is, and I quote:

“However, for the year 2013, the Commission will focus on key programmes that will enhance public service delivery. This is one of the logical conclusions of budgets always being limited or always not what we would all dream of”.

Sir, I was merely confirming that there are fiscal space constraints. I am far too old a dog to be complaining to the hon. Minister of Finance on my own side of the House about the Budget. We defend the amount of money that is under this Head.

Mr Chairperson, if President Obama had not won the election yesterday, President Romney, as he would then be, would, in three months’ time, go into the White House and proceed to replace the top six layers of the American Public Service with people who can only be described as cadres or loyalist of the Republican Party. He would, in other words, locate or be aware that there was a Democratic volcano in the Public Service and replace it with people who share the Republican Party vision.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: I think that part of the stress in this country is a result of the fact that we have a Constitution that is partly derived from the British Constitution, which is entirely different from the American Constitution. However, our Constitution, being presidential, is also partly based on the American Constitution. The tension between the two sources is an issue that I trust the new Constitution will take up to some extent.

Sir, in Britain, the Opposition, during an election, is actually briefed by the Civil Service on secret information that is also available, of course, to the Ruling Party so that there is no hiccup at all if another party comes into power. For example, the Conservative Party had all the information that it needed when it came to power after defeating the Labour Party in the last elections because the tradition of the loyal civil servant in Britain is entirely different from the American one. 

Mr Chairperson, what we found here is that it is very difficult to get the MMD way of thinking out of the Civil Service. It does not mean that we have workers with MMD cards or that some workers are MMD agents of any sort. It is about being a long-standing cadre of MMD type of leadership. This is making life difficult for this Government. So, changes have to be made. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: However, that does not mean that we are not committed to the PSC’s role. I mean, things must be done professionally and people appointed properly. All our DCs, for example, have got proper contracts in contrast to what the hon. Member … 

Hon. Opposition Members: Question!

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Vice-President: … was saying happened during the UNIP days when one was simply appointed by word of mouth and fired by the same means.

So, I think, we stand by what we have presented to you. I must pity Hon. Nkombo who is not in the House, but used the word ‘ng’wang’wazi.’ This classism that sometimes comes up in this House where we think that we are superior to the call-boys because we have got education or something like that is, to me, very lamentable. This is supposed to be a class-less society, not one that has replaced racial discrimination with class discrimination. I just want to mark that protest. This has been one of the differences between what the MMD or, perhaps, even UNPD ideology, in this case, and the PF ideology. I am sorry if Hon. Simbao’s feelings are hurt, but … 

Hon. Government Member: He has run away.

The Vice-President: He has run away, anyway. So, it does not matter.

I thank you, Sir.


VOTE 06/01 – (Public Service Commission – Office of the President – Headquarters – K7, 902, 458, 158). 

Dr Kazonga: Mr Chairperson, may I have clarification on Programme 3011, Activity 014 – Hardware Equipment Procurement – K24, 840, 000. I have noticed that the provision for this year is the same as that for last year. Why has this figure been maintained when the price of equipment is always rising? 

The Vice President: Mr Chairperson, it is a provision, and the easiest way to forecast a provision is to use the previous year’s provision, unless that was lamentably too small or regrettably too large. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Vote 06/01 Ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 33/01 – (Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry – Headquarters – K104, 595, 968, 726).

The Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mr Sichinga): Mr Chairperson, I thank you for according me the opportunity to deliver a policy statement on my ministry’s 2012 budget. 

Mr Chairperson, the theme of this year’s National Budget, which is ‘Delivering Inclusive Development and Social Justice’… 


The Chairperson: Order!

I always have problems, particularly when consultations are being made by people on my right. The hon. Minister needs to have a good flow of his argument and I, just like most of you, want to hear him speak. However, we will not be able to hear if you are consulting loudly. What problem do you have with consulting quietly? We have constantly advised that, if you want to consult loudly, you are free to leave the Chamber and do it outside. 

Hon. Minister, you may continue.

Mr Sichinga: I was saying that the theme for the 2013 Budget is, ‘Delivering Inclusive Development and Social Justice’. This is in tandem with the mission of the Ministry of Commerce Trade and Industry, which is, ‘To Effectively and Efficiently Facilitate and Promote Sustainable Development, Growth and Competitiveness of the Private Sector in Order to Enhance Socio-Economic Development’. In this regard, the ministry has continued to promote programmes and activities that sustain and advance the economic goal of Zambia, which is to be a prosperous middle-income nation by 2030 as envisaged in the Vision 2030.

Mr Chairperson, my ministry’s goal is to attain a diversified and competitive export-led manufacturing sector which will contribute 12.5 per cent to gross domestic product (GDP) as well as increase exports to 40 per cent of GDP by 2015. This is in order to create jobs and wealth. In this regard, our key focus is on diversification; competitiveness; which includes attracting local and foreign direct investment; improving both soft and hard infrastructure; developing micro, small and medium enterprises; and undertaking business management reforms in order to enhance the environment in which we do this business. To this end, the ministry has a K104, 595, 968, 726 allocation for 2013, which represents an increase of 16 per cent on the 2012 Budget.

Mr Chairperson, before I mention the programmes that we seek to undertake in 2013, allow me to present some of the achievements that have been made by the ministry during the current year, as they lay the foundation for the 2013 Budget.

Sir, our ministry launched the 2011-2015 Strategic Plan early its  operational and strategic guide as well as being a guide to the six parastatals under its jurisdiction. The revised strategic plan has necessitated the re-structuring of the ministry to align it with its new plan and the expanded mandate, which involves reaching out to the provinces and the districts, as I will subsequently explain. 

Mr Chairperson, taking account of the high premium that the Government has placed on job creation, attracting investment, both local and foreign, into the value addition sectors of the economy, has assumed top priority, and investment-promotion missions have been undertaken in targeted Asian economies, Europe and the United States of America (USA). This represents a key source of foreign direct investment (FDI) and presents us with lessons on how best we can address the challenges before us, which are creating jobs and putting more money in people’s pockets. In this regard, the ministry undertook foreign investment promotions to Malaysia, India, Turkey, USA, Australia, United Kingdom (UK), Norway, Sweden and Finland. The ministry recently did the same with Japan and South Korea.

Sir, His Excellency the President, Mr Sata, has taken very keen interest and has been instrumental in attracting FDI. He has personally led, at least, four investment promotion delegations to the UK, USA, Japan and Korea. This reflects the seriousness with which the PF Government regards wealth and job creation wealth for our people. 
Mr Chairperson, as the country has managed to market its investment opportunities and attract a significant number of investors, we have found it necessary to change some of the services we provide. Some of this investment will only materialise later, even beyond 2013. 

Sir, the ministry has received investment pledges worth US$678 million in the manufacturing sector with the corresponding expected creation of about 8, 700 jobs. This is against the total pledged investments of over US$4.3 billion, with an estimated 33, 000 jobs to be created. The pledged investment is expected to take off as soon as all other compliance matters are addressed. 

Sir, the ministry is also developing a framework for implementing joint ventures within the country between foreign investors and Zambians while simultaneously offering investor-facilitation services to Zambians abroad who wish to make investments back home. In this regard, the ministry is assisting the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA with sourcing of land and provision of information on investment opportunities for citizens who are abroad currently.

Mr Chairperson, with regard to the development of manufacturing sector, the Government is rejuvenating this sector through the promotion of value added strategy. In this respect, last month, the ministry held a national value addition workshop with key stakeholders, including the Government, private sector, the champions of industry, Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), co-operating partners and academicians. 

Sir, the ministry is, through the, also assisting the Ministry of Finance in promoting public-private-partnerships (PPPs) in order to enhance the establishment of competitive manufacturing industries whose products will find markets both in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) regions as well as beyond. The ministry has formulated the Engineering Sub-Sector Strategy in collaboration with the Japanese International Co-operation Agency (JICA). The purpose of the strategy is to add value to iron and copper in order to produce finished products. It might please this House to note that, currently, we are discussing with the private sector with a view to creating a copper city in Kabwe.

Mr Chairperson, additionally, our efforts are gaining momentum with regard to multi-facility economic zones (MFEZs) and the development of industrial parks. Steady progress has been recorded. Some of the MFEZs and industrial parks have been established while others are in the process of being developed. The MFEZs and industrial parks are expected to be the bedrock of manufacturing activities in the country, as they are designed to make Zambia competitive through increased productivity in the trade and manufacturing sectors. These will have numerous positive spill-over effects on other sectors, such as utilities, transport, agriculture and services. 

Sir, progress at the Lusaka South MFEZ has been reasonable and has already attracted twenty-nine potential investors. Development in other areas is progressing well, with the Chambishi MFEZ having already implemented 60 per cent of its project. The Roma Industrial Park stands at 30 per cent, Lusaka East and the Airport stand at 10 per cent, while Lumwana in the North-Western and Sub-Sahara Gemstone in Ndola have achieved little progress in attracting possible investors to their packs due to a variety of reasons. Sub-Sahara Gemstone in Ndola has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with an infrastructure value added investment pledge amounting to US$945 million with a potential investor in Australia. Currently, Sub-Sahara has pledged US$145 million in the joint venture. 

Sir, the Chambishi MFEZ now houses nineteen enterprises, including three Zambian companies, while other firms have expressed interest in locating into the zone. Five more enterprises are expected to establish their businesses before the close of 2012. While the pledged investment for the development of the Chambishi MFEZ infrastructure is more than US$945 million, there are other facilities as well in the MFEZ. The pledged investment by investors operating inside the MFEZ, not just MFEZ infrastructure, but those who are going to operate inside, amounts to approximately US$1 billion. So far, US$322 million has been invested in capital equipment by companies that have set up in the zone. 

Mr Chairperson, with regard to the National Industrialisation Strategy (NIS), the ministry has already undertaken a resource-mapping exercise in all the ten provinces of our country and produced a preliminary resource matrix which shows the resource endowment of all our provinces and districts, both rural and urban. The results of that exercise form the basis on which the NIS, which is currently under Cabinet consideration, has been premised. 

Sir, the establishment of industrial clusters aims at providing the infrastructure and equipment for value-added activities by micro and small enterprises in our individual districts, may I emphasise, ‘individual districts’. These will utilise the resource endowment of each region, and ensure that there is equitable development throughout the country. Up to five natural and agricultural products in each district will be supported. The private sector is expected to be the driver of this programme, primarily, through the establishment of co-ventures to support and provide sustainability to the activities in the industrial clusters.

Mr Chairperson, it is widely recognised that all levels of development, micro, small and medium enterprises have a significant role to play in economic development. For example, the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) play an important role in creating more employment than even the bigger companies, thus alleviating poverty by providing job opportunities. This is what the PF means when it says creating more jobs and putting more money in people’s pockets.

Sir, we are also imparting and reinforcing different business skills which include writing of business plans for accessing finance, business management and entrepreneurship, quality improvement and bidding for Government tenders. We have trained 673 SMEs so far. In this respect, we are working closely with Zambia Chamber of Small and Medium Business Association (ZACSMBA), which is the association of SME businesses. In fact, I am officiating at its function and launching its programmes for next year tomorrow afternoon.

Mr Chairperson, furthermore, an MoU has been signed with Investrust Bank linking SMEs to the bank for financing opportunities. Again, here, the House has raised issues of access and affordability of credit. We are hoping that, in this way, we can fill that particular gap. Through the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC), US$6 billion has been disbursed to fourteen approved organisations that were partly-funded through the empowerment fund. This brings the value of loans given out by the CEEC to K204.64 billion, which has benefited 1, 562 recipients since the inception of this institution.

Mr Chairperson, my ministry will be modelling the Intra-Africa Trade Centres concept. I trust that hon. Members have already seen the advertisements that have been running in the print media during the last week for a consultancy to conduct this exercise. The basic idea is to build a network of twenty-five intra-Africa trade centres along the borders of our country in selected places. This is intended to cater for small-scale traders so that their activities are promoted and streamlined into the formal flow of intra-Africa trade. We seek to capture the benefits that go with international trade. In this case, the ministry is also in the process of acquiring land throughout our districts in order to establish the intra-Africa trade centres. 

Sir, the ministry has further written to the ministers of trade in our neighbouring countries on the establishment of intra-Africa trade centres to sell the idea. The centres are expected to create jobs for the youth and empower them to set up SMEs so that they can be self-sustaining and have more money in their pockets. In fact, the first meeting with our neighbours will be taking place on 15th November, 2012, in Botswana.

Mr Chairperson, we are also looking at the operationalisation of Statutory Instrument (SI) No. 36 of 2011 on preferential treatment for citizens in public procurement. So far, this has resulted in the issuance of 1, 357 citizen-owned company certificates. The process of registering citizen companies for preferential procurement is on-going and should benefit many more SMEs. 

Sir, in terms of trade expansion and facilitation, the Government is negotiating the tripartite arrangement for COMESA, East African Community (EAC) as well as SADC. Furthermore, Zambia is negotiating the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) with the European Union (EU) through the Eastern and Southern African Configuration, where Zambia is chair. The country is also participating in the on-going trade negotiations under the World Trade Organisation (WTO), COMESA, SADC and the COMESA/SADC/EA Tripartite Economic Partnership Agreements.

Mr Chairperson, in the same vein, the Government through the ministry, is currently, addressing factors that hinder businesses from accessing preferential markets, such as the African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA), signed with the United States Government; Everything But Arms (EBA); the Canadian Initiative, China’s Special Preferential Treatment (SPTC) as well as the Japanese Initiative. Some of the factors affecting the agreements include standards and quality assurance issues, which are being resolved within the context of the National Quality Policy, which we have already established. Further, the Government is currently pursuing bilateral trade negotiations with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Angola, Belarus and Mozambique for additional market access.

Mr Chairperson, the Private Sector Development Reform Programme (PSDRP) has continued to focus on legislative reforms. In the current year, progress has been made in harmonising the Zambia Development Agency Act and the Citizens Economic Empowerment Act. Consultations are being held with the private sector and other key stakeholders to re-defining the priorities and re-focusing the PSDRP to critical areas that require immediate intervention, and enhance the private sector’s participation in this reform programme.

Mr Chairperson, we also have one-stop shops (OSS). These are shops where you can find services offered by the National Authority Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA) and Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) as you go to register your company. If you clear the name of your organisation, we guarantee that you can register it within 24 hours. 

Sir, this initiative has been introduced to enhance the pace at which reforms can help to reduce the cost of doing business. Following the operationalisation of the OSS in Lusaka, at the old Headquarters of the ministry, the ministry has also commenced started the process of rolling out the OSSs to all provincial centres. We started with the Livingstone OSS, which was officially launched by the General Secretary of the United Nations in March, this year. The process of integrating the systems in Lusaka and the inter-agency consultations for this process are also underway. 

Mr Chairperson, after the establishment of the one-stop border post at Chirundu, efforts are underway to do the same at the Tunduma-Nakonde, Mwami and Kasumbalesa as well as other strategic border areas. We have not currently established these as one-stop shops, but harmonised the work between us and the DRC.

Mr Chairperson, in our continued efforts to bring services closer to the citizens and in, particular, the constituencies, the ministry, through the Patents and Companies Registration Agency (PACRA), has established two additional regional offices, one in Chinsali and another in Mongu, bringing the number of regional offices to six, the others being Livingstone, Ndola, Chipata and the headquarters in Lusaka. 

Further, Sir, PACRA has further entered into partnerships with the local authorities. It is important for hon. Members of Parliament to appreciate the fact that local authorities in the Eastern, Southern, Western, Muchinga and Northern Provinces are being used as service points. The public can now collect and drop application forms through the respective local authorities. Focal point persons have been trained in the basics of business registration in respective authorities. Moreover, an on-line name availability search system has been introduced to enable the public to electronically lodge applications or enquires on the availability of particular names. The agency is also now able to register businesses as within 24 hours.

Mr Chairperson, there was a clean-up of the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) where a new Director-General has been appointed. The Auditor- General carried out an audit of the commission’s accounts, and the report will soon be finalised and circulated for the information of the public and other stakeholders. It is important for us to appreciate that the suspension of the operations of the CEEC was meant to enable us to clean up the operations of the institution. 

Mr Chairperson, in fact, I reported to this House that only 42 per cent of the loans that had been given were performing, while 58 per cent were not, hence, the fund was not revolving.

Mr Chairperson, furthermore, in order to ensure that governance structures and procedures are in place, the ministry entered into a performance covenant with the Board of Commissioners at the CEEC, which will ensure positive management outcomes. Hopefully, as we re-establish the operations of the CEEC, we will now see a cleaner and more efficient process as well. Furthermore, a proper debt management system to use for recovery of loans from previous disbursements has been put in place.

Mr Chairperson, let me also bring to the attention of the House the focus areas of the ministry for the 2013 to 2015 period. The primary focus will be on ensuring that the ministry delivers on its mandate.

The Chairperson: Order!

Business was suspended from 16 15 hours until 16 30 hours.


Mr Sichinga: Mr Chairperson, before business was suspended, I was drawing the attention of the House to the focus areas of the ministry during the 2013 to 2015 period. Primarily, and this forms the basis of our budget, we will be implementing programmes that will help the ministry to deliver on its mandate.

Mr Chairperson, there is a need for a paradigm shift. May I emphasise to the House that the world’s manufacturing and trade regimes have changed, and our country it is important for our country to recognize this fact and move accordingly. 

Sir, in SADC, 72 per cent of the business and trade is generated by South Africa, 8 per cent by Namibia, 4 per cent by Zambia and Zimbabwe, respectively, while the remaining twelve countries share the remaining 12 per cent. It is for this reason that we are emphasising the need for increased value addition, which will turn the rich resource endowments of our country into finished consumer products. For that reason, the ministry will strengthen and widen the country’s manufacturing base with emphasise on the backward and forward linkages. That is the area we want to exploit, but it requires that we intensify the development of the resource-based industries, particularly, those that are located in the rural areas. I think that this should be music in the ears of the hon. Members of Parliament representing rural constituencies. 

Mr Chairperson, in line with the strategic focus of the Sixth National Development Plan (SNDP), emphasis will be on enhancing the competitiveness of the manufacturing and trade sectors through quality national infrastructure development. 

In short, we shall concentrate on the establishment of industrial clusters at the district level, and multi-facility economic zones (MFEZs) …


The Chairperson: Order!

We are making noise. 

The hon. Minister may proceed. 

Mr Sichinga: … at the provincial level as well as the establishment of intra-Africa trade centres in the border areas so as to take advantage of what will be produced in those industrial clusters so that we can enhance and increase trade within the region. As I reported to this House, our major trading partner in the region currently is the DRC, with which we have US$600 million worth of business. Every day, about 500 to 650 trucks cross our country into the DRC. It is important for Zambia to take advantage of this trade because of our location and relationships. 

Mr Chairperson, we need to establish more OSSs to promote micro, small and medium size enterprises. We will also continue with the implementation of the PSDRP. We are talking about national industrialisation, as already explained. 

Sir, we are talking about the promotion of additional foreign direct investment (FDI) not because local investment is not important, but because it is not sufficient to exploit the resource-base that we have. We want to foster domestic trade and competitiveness so as to increase the percentage of our trade with our neighbours, both in SADC and the Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA). We are undertaking strategic trips because we want to enhance market access for Zambian products and services. 


Mr Sichinga: Furthermore, working with other Government ministries, we will focus on improving trade-related infrastructure, both hard and soft. The re-structuring of the ministry is necessary because we need to take the services to the provinces and the districts. It is important to note that this ministry has been one of the most centralised because it does not have offices in the provinces and districts. With the establishment of industrial clusters in the districts and MFEZs in the provinces, it will be necessary that support services are provided through the ministry and its agencies. For this reason, we will be re-structuring the ministry to align it with the new strategic plan and expanded mandate. 

Mr Chairperson, we are aware that the resource base and the allocation to the ministry may not be enough. However, we have to make do with what we have. The allocation has been raised from K90.2 billion in 2012 to K104.6billion in 2013. This increment might fall short of the resources required to effectively implement all the programmes. However, my ministry and statutory boards will put this resource constraint aside and implement as many innovative, creative and cost-saving programmes as it will be able to develop in order to enhance service delivery and encourage the development of the private sector. 

Mr Chairperson, as I conclude, I wish to appeal to the House to support the budgetary allocation for the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry, and help Zambia move one step closer to achieving inclusive development and deliver to the people of Zambia their vision of being a prosperous middle-income nation by 2030. The basis of our budget is exactly this. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane (Liuwa): Mr Chairperson, I want to thank you for giving me this opportunity to be the first person to comment on the budget proposals by the hon. Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: Mr Chairperson, this ministry is very important, especially in a country like Zambia where youth unemployment is a very serious problem. 

Sir, currently, there are roughly 400, 000 young entrants into the labour market every year. In the next five years, this figure could rise to as many as half a million, which is a very serious problem, and I believe that the ministry, especially through the manufacturing sector, has a very important role to play in addressing it.

Mr Chairperson, I have listened several times to statements about how agriculture can provide jobs to many people. I agree with that in a tentative sense. In fact, looking at the development paths of most of the countries that have made it will show you that agriculture tends to absorb very little labour. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: In the United States of America, labour moved away from agriculture into manufacturing. The same thing happened in Europe, Asia and, now, China. It does not mean that these countries are going hungry, but that their productivity in agriculture went up. For instance, a person, with his or her machinery, will produce 100,000 bags of maize. Therefore, when labour productivity in agriculture goes up with the use of machinery, the surplus labour must be absorbed elsewhere and, most of the time, it must go to the manufacturing sector. It is, therefore, very important that the latter sector is supported. 

Mr Chairperson, without understanding that the labour market will be swelling with young people, and that the agricultural sector, going by the experiences of other countries, will not be able to absorb this labour, how are we going to prepare our manufacturing sector in Zambia to play a similar role in absorbing this ocean of youngsters coming onto the labour market? 

Mr Chairperson, I listened very carefully to what the hon. Minister said and also had recourse to the Yellow Book and I am disappointed that the efforts currently being made will not culminate in a situation in which the manufacturing sector will absorb 100, 000 or 200, 000 people every year, yet the problem of youth unemployment is real, and we cannot run away from it. If we do not solve the problem, we are all going to be in trouble. When young people do not have jobs or money, our wall fences will be coming down and our cars will be smashed like we see happening in the Middle East.  

Mr Chairperson, we need to be more ambitious in terms of what is required to solve this problem. In the Yellow Book, I have seen some of the interventions in as far as manufacturing is concerned. I have seen something to do with rural industrialisation strategy, which has been allocated K2.7 billion. I have also seen something on manufacturing sector development, which has been allocated K559 million. I have seen something to do with the micro, small and medium enterprises promotion, which the hon. Minister talked about, and this has been allocated K603 million. 

Mr Chairperson, I am sure that my colleagues in this House will agree with me that, given the magnitude of the problem that I have outlined, the Government needs to be more ambitious than this, to avoid the consequences I have indicated.  

Mr Chairperson, I am also aware that some parts of the Budget have provisions meant for the development of the MFEZs, which is something meant to support manufacturing. However, even then, the intervention is not sufficient.

Sir, the hon. Minister, perhaps, not in this House, but at other fora, has mentioned a number of initiatives before. We all recall him talking about the need for value addition in Zambia on copper, agriculture and other products. Having listened to him, I am not very clear on whether there is anything substantial that he is planning to do to promote value addition to the commodities that are being produced in Zambia. He has said that he wants that done, but those are mere words. In terms of whether there have been resources and the efforts dedicated to the attainment of this objective, I am not sure. Sometime in the past, I have also heard him talk about industries in villages and based on the resource endowment of specific provinces and districts. I have also listened very carefully this afternoon and looked at the budgetary provisions, and I am not convinced that enough efforts are actually being made to promote these ideas. On the contrary, and I must apologise, I suspect that we are tackling many issues, such as this report, organising conferences and the resource map.

Mr Chairperson, yesterday, we heard the hon. Member of Parliament for Senanga talk about lessons from dogs. I think he was talking about nja yamukwang’uli.


Dr Musokotwane: Today, I will also use a Lozi phrase to illustrate something so that we can learn. A friend of mine taught me the adage that ‘Nja aikomoki yatinile hande’. This means that, if you take any of these gentlemen and ladies who are very immaculately dressed and put them in front of a dog, it will not admire them and say, “Well done you are well-dressed.” It will not!

Hon. Government Member: What will it say?

Dr Musokotwane: A dog cannot admire you for being well-dressed because your good sense of dressing is irrelevant to it.


Dr Musokotwane: If you come with a bone or nshima, it will admire you and wag its tail.


Dr Musokotwane: So, hon. Minister, by way of advice, we hear about conferences …

Mr Muntanga: Clusters.

Dr Musokotwane: … clusters and reports, but what is relevant is to get started so that people can see that you are serious about creating jobs that will be seen.

Ms Siliya: Hear, hear!

Dr Musokotwane: If you do not do that, I am sorry, the dogs will not admire your good dressing.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: Dressing well for dogs.

Dr Musokotwane: Mr Chairperson, my last point …


Dr Musokotwane: … is on State enterprises. You are the manager for these, but you have to be very careful because the UNIP Government got into trouble because it fell into the trap of State enterprises. A lot of money can be put into these institutions but, if you are not careful, in the end, you will lose that money, and the jobs and productivity will not be there. Let me give a specific example, just one, about the dangers of not being careful about State enterprises.

Sir, we are happy that this country was able to raise US$750 million out of the sale of a bond, which will be used for infrastructure development or anything else that the Government decides. However, let me tell you that the impact of that money will not be that great. As of now, we have already lost something like US$500,000 million out of it. So, $750 million came because of the Eurobond but, unfortunately, because of the issue of State enterprises, out of this, and I am talking in nett terms, as an accountant. I am sure you understand what I mean. In nett terms, out of that US $750 million, maybe, we are going to pay something like $400 to $500 million to compensate the Libyans over Zambia Telecommunications Company (ZAMTEL) Limited. I do not know how much you are going to pay for Zambia Railways …


Dr Musokotwane: If you do not agree, stand up and make your point. In my case, I am absolutely certain that part of this US $750 million will come, but the bigger part of it will just leave by the other door because you have to pay for compensation. The end result is that …

Mr Sampa: On a point of order, Sir.

Hon. Opposition Members: Awe!

The Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Mr Kambwili: Emo walelila mu ZAMTEL twalipoka!

The Chairperson: Order!

Mr Sampa: Mr Chairperson, is the hon. Member on the Floor in order to bring up the matter of ZAMTEL when it is still in a court of law? 

I seek your serious ruling.

The Chairperson: Could the hon. Member debating, please, take that point of order into account as he debates. Debating that matter is sub-judice.

Dr Musokotwane: Thank you, Mr Chairperson, for your advice. I will not belabour the point anymore. I think that it is well understood.

In conclusion, Sir, let me just say to the hon. Minister that the issue of manufacturing is very important. We look forward to Zambia being in the lead among those countries that have managed to make manufacturing absorb the majority of the young people. Examples of countries that have done this are many in this world. So, for now, I am sorry to say that, if these are the only resources that have been provided, we have lost another opportunity because, at this rate, it is like opening a tap in a bathtub without a stopper. The water comes into the tub, but you cannot expect it to accumulate because it goes in and drains out. Similarly, if we do not create enough jobs, the unemployment levels are only going to be getting worse.

Mr Chairperson, thank you.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Mr Chairperson, I am indebted to you for allowing me to make a quick comment on the Budget proposals of the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry.

Sir, I thank the hon. Minister for being elaborate in his discourse, and state that I have always admired the way he presents himself. I only wish that his words would be translated into practical realities on the ground in order for us to see the benefits of what I would call his positive dream for the country.

Mr Chairperson, let me quickly comment on what he termed ‘strategic travels’ by himself or by his officers. Yes, indeed, for exposure and identification of opportunities, these travels are necessary. I took the trouble to check with my own sources, and they could be wrong or right, that the hon. Minister has spent more time travelling than being in this House or his office. He has done a lot of travelling, and I am very sure that these strategic travels will yield something since he said it himself.

Mr Chairperson, coming to the matter that prompted me to take the Floor, I wish to say that, from the hon. Minister’s comments on the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC), it was indeed a prudent move, to freeze the operations of that institution and make the necessary changes. I say so because what we know is that he identified a problem at that institution, although he has not given us the details of the extent of that problem. I think that it is incumbent upon him to give full disclosure of the happenings there, regardless of who may have been responsible for the non-performance level of 58 per cent and only a performance of 42 per cent that he has given us, if I quoted him right. That is really below any institution’s expectations. What might have happened is that people took advantage of their positions to get loans. I, therefore, think that `it is incumbent upon you to come to this House and make an expose, without fear or favour, of those who have obtained pecuniary advantage because of their positions.

Sir, in the Yellow Book, to me, it appears to be just business as usual since last year. You have allocated K15 billion to the CEEC, which was the same amount in this year’s Budget, without giving us the actual measures that you intend to, or have already put in place to recover the 58 per cent that has not performed, because there is no free lunch. There is absolutely no way that you are going to allow this 58 per cent to go down the drain. It will rub on you since you have a duty to engage every possible means to recover this money, at least, to levels of simple indemnification to bring yourself to where you were, not allowing yourselves to lose.

Similarly, in future, do not allow your new managers of the CEEC to also fall into this trap. What you needed to do, as a matter of fact, is fire everybody at the CEEC against what I debated on yesterday regarding the Civil Service. I said that you should have fired all of them. There simply should not be any sacred lamb in public affairs management, and it should not be a norm that, because Hon. Sichinga is light-skinned, therefore, he can toy around with a loan that he got. These loans must perform. If they do not perform, go out and engage the law enforcers and grab anything that you can find from these culprits so that you can get the institution indemnified.

Mr Speaker, I am glad to state that, from this corner of the House, if there will be anyone among we, the representatives, who might have dipped their hands into the CEEC, they must just be a very lonely voice. So, do not allow your colleagues from the PF to also go and dip their hands into that pot because loans are to be paid back. Loans are for economic empowerment, not personal beneficiation.

Sir, I now want to move to the Zambia Bureau of Standards (ZABS), where I see you have allocated a paltry K500 million. In my view, your officers and yourself may have downplayed the importance of this institution. ZABS is a very important institution because part of the reason Zambian-produced goods cannot sell abroad is that they do not meet the minimum international standard specifications. If a packet of sugar is 2kg, it ought to be just that. Take a trip into Shoprite or any of these shops and see whether there is standardisation. You will find that aspect lacking. For people to comply, you need to empower this institution. The K500 million you allocated it is too little. The same applies to the Zambia Weights and Measures Agency. It also requires to be empowered much more than this K4, 155, 265, 155 that you gave it.


The Chairperson: Order! 


Mr Nkombo: Mr Speaker, the Zambia Competition Commission (ZCC) also requires fortification. It is true that there has been a lot of political interference in this institution. It is also true that there are very bad practices in managing this issue of competition and that people make cartels. I think, it is up to your ministry to break the cartels. You should not fall into the trap where the rich will get richer and the poor get poorer, thereby widening the gap between the two. It is because institutions like the ZCC cannot be effective in order to catch a win-win situation for all the players.

Sir, I also wanted you to mention, as an afterthought, that you needed to tap into the Credit Reference Bureau (CRB) that banks have established to make sure that you also have a database of individuals who may come to you under different trading names and want to borrow from the CEEC. You need to stop that. 

Mr Speaker, you spoke about the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) which, on face value, look innocent to me. I would like to quickly comment that, if you take South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Swaziland and Lesotho, they are under a customs union and even their currencies are on a one-on-one basis. So, they can negotiate their affairs around these EPAs to their advantage. Please, we have always insisted that you take a close look at the EPAs and make sure that we do not fall into the trap that got me into trouble with the Zambia Daily Mail newspaper when I brought a chicken here, which was dressed in Brazil, but labelled that it was packaged in South Africa, because this will always become a dumping ground for the region and the world. You need to take heed and make sure that if you ever get to the point of signing these EPAs, they should be to the benefit of this country.

Sir, speaking about trade and regional integration, I would like the hon. Minister to also carry out a quick study to find out how many Zambian products are sold in markets like the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) countries. The hon. Minister lamented about the country not producing finished products and cited that as one of the reasons we cannot create jobs and the country’s general poverty. Go into Zimbabwe, South Africa and the COMESA market, such as the one we have here, and see for yourself what Zambian products you will find in those markets. My guess is that they will be insignificant. So, we need to see whether these trade protocols in the region, such as COMESA or SADC, have benefited our country.

Mr Speaker, you also talked about the African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA), and I think that you needed to say more on it because there is a yawning market in the United States for Zambian and African products. There is a need for us to put our money where our mouths are for us to get the full benefit of the natural endowment that you spoke about throughout your discourse.

Sir, as I conclude, I appreciate that, indeed, there must be some appreciation of these mappings that you have done for this country, but let it not just be a chorus because we already know, actually, we knew long before 1964, the resource endowment that Zambia has got from God almighty. The idea, now, should be to ensure that existing industries, such as the Munali Nickel Project, which has been switched off for close to two years now, are revived and made operational. The project shut down the year the PF came into office, in November, although the party might argue that the project had shut down in February. It was because the management had to go through the legal process of giving notice to the Government before they could finally close. So, it is two years since the company closed. There were dreams of putting a smelter there, and that is what you should be looking at, before you come to me and tell me about an industrial cluster, because there is an endowment there already.

An industrial cluster can even be identified in Chadiza. However, let us use the full potential of what we have already identified. That is my piece of advice to the hon. Minister. I want to wish him all the best as he carries on. I also want to state that the one-stop shop on licensing is a good idea. However, let us not sing too much about it because it was a brain-child of the MMD. The previous Government started it. So, let us see how we can broaden it. The same goes for the one-stop border post concept.

Hon. MMD Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo: Broadening the scope of these concepts will help us because we should adopt the building-blocks approach to life, not discarding what our colleagues started. We need to congratulate them on what they have done and build upon it. We should not be afraid to also tell them where they went wrong, but not in a malicious manner. It should, obviously, be in a manner that our colleagues on your right will be seen to have made a difference come five years when they pack their bags from Government offices and the UPND comes in.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


 Mr Nkombo: I see that there is some excitement across the House. We are going to form the Government in 2016, and we will take advantage of the errors that they may continue making and not taking heed of what we are saying. When they were this side, they told the MMD what I am telling them, but the MMD used to say, ‘Aah, aah!’ Watch the space. Zambians will throw them out of office in 2016. There are only four more years.

Mr Chairperson, I thank you very much.

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Simbao (Senga Hill): Mr Chairperson, thank you for giving me this opportunity to debate this vote. To start with, I have noticed an imbalance in the House due to the absence of Hon. Livune.


Dr Kazonga: You should emphasise that point.

Mr Simbao: Mr Chairperson, I must commend the hon. Minister for a very well- presented speech. It was well-tempered, without the usual excitement that he brings in that makes us fail to understand him. So, I stand here to, hopefully, reason with him on what I see as a problem. I hope the hon. Minister will take me very seriously, not go into politicking.

Mr Chairperson, I notice that, in his speech, the hon. Minister did not make any reference to the promise of creating one million jobs. This worries me because that is very important. The Zambian people must always be assured when an hon. Minister like him or the hon. Minister of Finance stands to speak. It is a promise that has been made by the President, himself. So, it worries me that he delivered such a long speech, yet that subject was missing. All that was said is that this is what the Government means by creating jobs. That is not enough. In clarifying what I mean, I will borrow what Hon. Dr Musokotwane said. 

Sir, in 2011, when we were going for elections, there were more than five million people without employment. This Government has promised to create one million jobs, which is very good. However, this still falls far short of what it promised before coming into power. Going by what Hon. Dr Musokotwane has said, if we are going to keep adding half a million people every year to the number of the unemployed, we are going to have an additional four million plus unemployed people in 2016. I am getting these figures from a publication that we all have. It is a question of going to that document and confirming what I am talking about. 

Sir, on the Copperbelt alone, there were 740, 000 unemployed people in 2011. Here, in Lusaka, there were more, at 756, 000. I have said before that the one million jobs that the Government is talking about can only absorb those who are here, in Lusaka, and those on the Copperbelt. What about Senga Hill, where I come from, or the Northern Province? What is going to happen to the unemployed there? 

Mr Chairperson, this is what Hon. Dr Musokotwane was saying. Let us be slightly more ambitious so that we target creating more jobs and ensure that we achieve that because it is possible. The problem I have is that, when I look at the breakdown of the sectors that create employment, manufacturing is only expected to create 90, 000 jobs in five years. That figure will not take us anywhere, considering what the hon. Minister is talking about, which is value addition. 

Sir, if you look at the pie chart in the Budget, the highest number of jobs to be created is in the agricultural sector, and Hon. Dr Musokotwane hit the right string on this issue. If you look at South Korea, the agricultural sector is very small, but it produces enough food to feed its citizens and export. The same applies to Malaysia. In short, agriculture is not a sector that can develop a country to the levels where America, Singapore and other countries are. It is manufacturing that can take us to that level. This is exactly what Hon. Dr Musokotwane meant when he talked about value addition. 

Sir, if we are not able to add value to our products, we should forget about economic development. I also want to make it very clear to the hon. Minister that the source of money that developed other countries was not FDI, but their own money, either borrowed, which becomes their own after paying back the loans, or internally-generated revenue. That is the only approach that will push us forward. No one will come here and develop this country. There are very few people who are willing to stay here forever like the His Honour the Vice-President.


Mr Simbao: Many foreigners will come here to do business and, when they are through, go back where they came from. We cannot hope that people who do not belong here will develop this country. It will not happen. So, I want to advise the hon. Minister that, if we cannot generate our funds internally, there is no way we are going to be where we want to be, and that is why we may be blindly talking on windfall tax. However, if the people who are listening go to, they will find a very strong argument there by Professor Clive Chirwa, in which he basically says that we are stealing money from Zambians by not introducing the windfall tax. Please, go to that website and read that long article.  

Mr Chairperson, no one will come and invest in sectors in which they are not interested. They will be coming into mining but, immediately the copper runs out, they will go. No one will come here and invest in something that they know that they can do it easily elsewhere. They are coming here because we are among the few countries with copper. Maybe, in future, we shall be among the few with oil or uranium for nuclear energy. That is why they are coming, but not for the things that we ourselves must be doing. We can only develop other sectors with our own money, either borrowed, like the US$750 million Eurobond Hon. Sampa went and got, which we shall have to pay, or our own internally-generated money internally.

Mr Simbao: Mr Chairperson, the hon. Minister also talked about clusters, which are very good. However, I hope that he will go back and check in the archives at his ministry because the late Dr Mbikusita-Lewanika did that in 2002. Once he does that, he will see why what that gentleman then thought was the way forward did not work because the hon. Minister’s ideas and dreams are good. I also hope that he listened to President Barack Obama of the United States of America (USA) when he said, “Now I am going to be different.” When you have dreams of what you think can be done, when you have not been there and you get there, at times, it becomes a shame. So, it is better to promise only what is possible …

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Simbao: … because, eventually, unfulfilled promises come back to haunt you. The idea of clusters was tried in 2002, but it never worked. You can grow groundnuts well and good, but what do you do afterwards? The groundnuts, even without help, are still being grown. Why not make a suit like the one the hon. Minister is wearing? That is what should be seriously looked at. Nothing of what he is wearing is made in this country. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Simbao: On a lighter note, since he is now a tourist, I am sure he is just busy collecting things.


Mr Simbao: Why can we not produce a single paper in this country? 

Hon. Government Member: Were you not an hon. Minister?


Mr Simbao:  Mr Chairperson, protect me. I think we are not balanced.

The Chairperson: Order!

You have the protection, hon. Simbao. The House is called to order.

You can continue.

Mr Simbao: I thought we were not balanced, Mr Chairperson.


Mr Simbao:  Sir, let me quickly talk about the Budget.  The hon. Minister of Finance has allocated very little money to important areas. I totally agree with the hon. Minister that the K104, 595, 968, 726 that has been allocated to the ministry is not enough. However, K20 billion should have been allocated to these important areas on page 539, Programme 1217 – Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development (MSMEs) – (PRP) – K4, 000, 000, 000, and on page 543, Programme 1116 – Manufacturing Sector Development – K559, 900, 000. These are the areas where somebody can have hope because the hon. Minister talked about them. 

Hon. Government Member: That money will help.

Mr Simbao: Yes, that will help indirectly, but they are not the direct lines for development.  We really need to add value. As Hon. Dr Musokotwane said at one time, all the copper must not leave Zambia unless it has undergone value addition, though I do not know, really, what he was talking about. We are producing 700, 000 metric tonnes of copper. If the hon. Minister really meant what he said in his policy debate, Zambia will be the best country on earth. So, what Hon. Dr Musokotwane said was very important but, when you look at the money that the ministry has been given, especially for important areas, it is just a joke. 

Sir, we are not serious about the welfare of the Zambian people and will not get anywhere. It would have been better for the hon. Minister to reveal how many jobs were created last year because the PF Government has only got four more years for the term to end. I can assure you that the hon. Minister is talking about clusters now and other businesses. We shall reach next December without anything having happened. So, it is important that the hon. Minister looks at these areas very seriously. He knows that, if there is any ministry that might make a difference, it is the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry. 

Sir, the mining industry is already there. It is on the ground. The only problem we have is taking those things from the ground and adding value to them where the MMD failed. The ministry is at the centre of the problem. Looking at the way it has been designed, I can challenge the hon. Minister that there will not be a single job he is going to create in Senga Hill and the Northern Province as a whole. Everything will just end in Lusaka and the Copperbelt provinces. Nothing will go towards many of my friends in the rural areas. They must get me clearly on that. 

Mr Chairperson, I would like to inform the hon. Minister that I have been very temperate in my debate because of the way he has presented himself today.

I thank you, Sir.

The Chairperson: Before I call upon another hon. Member to debate, let me advise the House that three hon. Members have so far spoken after the hon. Minister. From my understanding of what has been said by the three hon. Members, I do not think that there will be anything different from what has been said …

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

The Chairperson: … but, that notwithstanding, I will call upon one hon. Member who, I hope, will say something different.

Mr Mufalali (Senanga):  Mr Chairperson, I thank you very much for giving me this opportunity to debate, and I will be brief.

Mr Chairperson, the hon. Minister indicated that the performance of the CEEC in recovery of loans was at 42 per cent. I realise that the hon. Minister has been a consultant for many years, and I think that his advice on this will be cardinal. However, the CEEC was a model picked, I think, from South Africa to empower citizens. It does not really work as long as it is in the Government’s hands. 

Mr Chairperson, the funds of the commission should be moved to a private entity that will be able to disburse them and a proper criterion used. Otherwise, the way it is and the problems that are there will continue because the allocation of these funds is based on political patronage. In fact, what happens is that you create some businessmen or bourgeoisie who do not even have enough entrepreneurial experience. All they do is collect money and buy whatever and, after three years, they are all out of business. So, the best option would be to allow these funds to be disbursed by an independent entity.

The hon. Minister also talked about a paradigm shift within the region, and that our country is contributing only 4 per cent to regional trade. It is at the same level with Zimbabwe which has gone through difficulties. I think that this is something of our own making. Looking at the policies that we have, we have, more or less, a peasantry approach.

Sir, we are looking at agriculture from a peasantry approach whereby we want to be so manual when other countries are moving in the direction of mechanisation and mass production. In that line, we will be able to produce more for the region, instead of depending on peasant methods which will not grow our GDP. Moreover, that is why we have difficulties. Today, we talked about very few wheat farmers being black people or of Zambian origin. If we are not going to allow our own citizens to have machinery to develop agriculture, we will not enhance our contribution to the region.

Mr Chairperson, as regards manufacturing, I would like to urge the hon. Minister to adopt the Mauritian model. That country had depended on sugar exports for 95 per cent of its GDP, but moved on to manufacturing. All it did was get permission from patent holders to manufacture some products according to set standards. If we took that route, it could help. We had Serios before, which sold suits throughout the region and to the United Kingdom, but the MMD got rid of it. If we are unable to compete with the well-developed designs, we should just get the patents and use them here for our exports. That will help this country to create employment and compete in the European markets. As the hon. Minister travels across the continent, he needs to look for markets, especially good ones, for our products. That will be the key to penetrating European markets.

Mr Chairperson, I also think that the hon. Minister should tell us whether the policy on clusters is ready because people have been asking about them. However, we are not too sure about them because he has not explained much on how he would want to design them. In Livingstone, we have tourism clusters. Mainly, the clusters take the model of the main business taking place in one area. The information that one company has can be used to help another company. The model of the Silicon Valley in the United States of America (USA) on information technology (IT) is one good example of this model. In Silicon Valley, they have clusters which are mainly created by university drop-outs like Bill Gates. 

Sir, I do not know what cluster model we want to create in the Zambian sense. However, the point is that they work well when they are based on one business economic activity. If it is tourism, for example, one tour operator is able to give business to another company. In IT circles, the same things that one is doing in one company are being done by another somewhere else. Therefore, such individuals from different companies are able to throw jobs to each other. That way, the industry can grow. I think that the hon. Minister will need to explain more on the model that will be picked for our clusters and whether there will be companies doing different things in one area.  

For me, in Senanga, I have enough hides, but do not know whether that is the quality required in Europe. We have so many other products that we can develop there. If these clusters will develop a single item or industry in that district, it would be greatly helpful. 

Mr Chairperson, as regards the SMEs, I get concerned that some simple businesses that are supposed to be handled by citizens are being taken over by foreigners. It is important that, as companies register, we dissect them and try to understand what types of businesses they are. It will be important not to register companies that want to engage in business meant for our local people. It is important to leave some businesses for our local people.

Mr Chairperson, our people have suffered and failed to peak because many of those who they are trying to compete with in some of the sectors are able to secure loans at cheap rates while our people get loans at higher rates. I am not, in any sense, against competition when it comes to business because it allows for growth. It also allows the sleeping giants to wake up if there is just a bit of inequality. However, when the inequality is too much, to the extent that you cannot do anything, then it becomes difficult. 

Mr Chairperson, some car dealers in this country are able to take our people out of business because they buy from Japan and have warehouses in Durban. How does a single, small businessman in our country compete with people who buy cars from Japan, store them in Durban and, then, supply to Zambians? How do our small-scale businesses compete with big businesses? The situation becomes unfavourable, and the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) should look into it. I know of companies that are trading in Japan, South Africa and here which are kicking our people out of business. Some of the people who were retrenched, some time back, went into this very business, but they are now being kicked out of it. 

Mr Chairperson, I also want the hon. Minister to clear the air on public-private partnerships (PPPs). The Government did away with what was put in place by the MMD at Nakonde and Kasumbalesa. So, it is important to quickly find partners who will run the PPPs. Otherwise, if the Government is going to involve itself too much in business, we will not get anywhere. The Government, normally, does not create more jobs. 

Mr Chairperson, the path turning companies into State enterprises is not good. The Government is getting too involved, and the money that is meant for social services and development is being swallowed up by entities like the Railway Systems of Zambia (RSZ), Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) and Zambia Telecommunications Company (ZAMTEL) Limited when we are only supposed to be getting revenue from them. It is very important for the Government not to go about doing things the United National Independence Party (UNIP) way. The Government should detach itself from running business. 

Mr Chairperson, I thank you.

Mr Sichinga: Mr Chairperson, obviously, although only four people have spoken on the allocation to my ministry, quite a lot has been said on how the House wants us to go forward. The hon. Members may wish to know that there are additional provisions under Vote 21, and K145 billion will go with it. As you look at Vote 21, recognise that there are amounts related to the ministry under it.

Mr Chairperson, I have taken note of what Hon. Dr Musokotwane, Hon. Nkombo, Hon. Simbao and Hon. Mufalali said. Clearly, if we had all listened to one another from the beginning to the end, you would have seen that most of the issues that you have talked about have been covered. The model for the clusters will be brought to the House after the due process, which includes Cabinet approval. 

I want to assure you that the proposal and concept are all done as we stand at the moment. We have even looked at some of the areas where we can locate the clusters. Currently, we are engaging with the councils, and I hope that hon. Members of Parliament can help in this process of acquiring the land where the clusters will be. 

Sir, I acknowledge the fact that not enough money has been provided. However, we can make a choice, hon. Colleagues, to stay where we are or move on with whatever resources we have. As for me, I believe that the resources we have will enable us to get started, and I wish that Hon. Simbao had waited until after the implementation of the project to challenge me because it is too early to challenge one another at this point. We should all work together to make the country go forward. If the project succeeds, it will be good for all of us. If it fails, for whatever reason, all of us will be looked at as failures. 

Mr Chairperson, the issues that have been raised are valid, and we will take them into consideration as we prepare the individual programmes. I will not go into the individual items that have been spoken about. It suffices, for me, to request the House to endorse what we have on the Table because this is what has been allocated from the resources that are available to us currently. Meanwhile, we are working to get more resources. On Friday, we will have meetings with donors who have expressed interest in helping in the process that I have talked about. Therefore, we are not relenting, but moving on. We will deal with the challenges as they arise. Once again, I seek the support of the House in approving this budget.

 I thank you, Sir.

Vote 33/01 – (Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry – Headquarters – (K53, 453, 678, 382).

Dr Kazonga (Vubwi): Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on Programme 1088, Activity 035 – Staff Welfare – Nil. There was a provision of K450, 000, 000 in the 2012 Budget, but there is nothing allocated for this ty next year. What has happened to staff welfare in the ministry?

The Deputy Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mr Taima): Mr Chairperson, that provision has not been provided for because the Government plans to come up with a scheme in which banks, not Government ministries, will take up the issue of giving loans to civil servants. Generally, staff welfare has to do with giving loans to civil servants.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Mbulakulima (Chembe): Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on Programme 1010, Activity 022 – Maintenance of Books of Account – K92, 000, 000. The figure has increased from K15, 500, 000 to K92, 000, 000. This being an activity-based budget, what did we not do this year which we hope to do next year?  

Mr Chairperson, I also seek clarification on Programme 1061, Activity 006 – Mail Management Services – K21, 537, 000, Activity 007 – Records Management – K58,000,500 and Activity 011 – Re-organisation of the Registry – K66,669,540. When are you going to modernise these departments to start using information and communication technologies (ICTs)? 

I further seek clarification on Programme 1008, Activity 008 – Development of the HIV Mainstreaming Strategic Plan – K65, 800, 000. This is very good and important. However, why has it taken you so long to consider it?

Mr Taima: Mr Chairperson, the sudden increase in the allocation to Programme 1010, Activity 022 – Maintenance of Books of Account – K92, 000, 000, is because we have closed one budget line that stood alone as Procurement of Backing Sheets and Payment Vouchers. If you check on the same Programme, 1010, Activity 035 - Procurement of Backing Sheets and Payment Vouchers, you will notice that it has no allocation.

Mr Chairperson, Programme 1062, Activity 006 – Mail Management Services – K21,537,000, Activity 007 – Records Management – K58, 000, 500 and Activity 011 – Re-organisation of the Registry – K66, 669, 540, there are generally some improvements in the areas in question. If a general assessment was to be made, in terms of these provisions, you could see that we have reduced the figures in certain areas, meaning that we are improving on the approach we use to manage our records. ICTs have also been taken on board. 

Mr Chairperson, it is good that we have started having activities under Programme 1008, Activity 008 – Development of the HIV Mainstreaming Strategic Plan – K65, 800, 000. The hon. Members should commend us, instead of asking us why we have taken so long to begin doing some work in that area.

I thank you, Sir.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on the answer which has been given by the hon. Deputy Minister on Programme 1088, Activity 035 – Staff Welfare – Nil. The answer he gave is that a bank that will provide loans to workers will be established. What if the bank is not established by 2013? Is the hon. Minister telling us that there will be no staff welfare issues to attend to in 2013 because there is no provision in the budget?

Mr Taima: Mr Chairperson, that question is a bit general. It is like we are going back to the policy debate. However, my comment is that everything possible is being done. For the ministry to squash this provision, it means that we have reached a certain level of certainty in having a bank in place that will take over the provision loans to civil servants.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Milambo (Mwembeshi): Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on Programme 1182, Activity 001 – Motor Vehicle Insurance – K155, 000, 000. This amount has been reduced from K270, 000, 000. What is the reason for that?

Mr Taima: Mr Chairperson, the provisions for insurance take on board the anticipated buying of new vehicles or assets that need to be insured. Having looked at our projections for next year, this department is not expected to acquire any new vehicles or assets. Therefore, that justifies the reduction. This means that we bought assets this year and we have already insured them. Next year, there might be no new additions to our assets.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Simbao: Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on Programme 1010, Activity 018 – IFMIS Activities – K259, 616, 000. What are these activities and why was K332, 250, 000 given for this year, but only K256, 616, 000 for next year?

Mr Chairperson, I also seek clarification on Programme 1009, Activity 010 – Audit of Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) – Nil, Activity 024 – Audit of Zambia Bureau of Standards (ZABS) – Nil , Activity 025 – Audit of Zambia Competition Commission (ZCC) – Nil, Activity 026 – Audit of Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) – Nil and Activity 027 – Audit of Zambia Weights and Measures Agency (ZWMA) – Nil. These activities have not been provided for in this Budget. Why do you not want to audit these institutions?

Mr Taima: Mr Chairperson, using the allocation for Programme 1010, Activity 018 – IFMIS Activities – K259, 616, 000, we will implement the Integrated Financial Management Information System (IFMIS). We have now reached the stage of implementation after having developed the system. That is why there is a raise in the provision. 

Mr Chairperson, in response to the second question by Hon. Simbao, I wish to state that we have moved away from the fragmented approach of making separate provisions for these auditing activities of our agencies. We have consolidated them into one budget line, which is under Programme 1009, Activity 016 - Audit of Grant-Aided institutions – K115, 000, 000.

I thank you, Sir.

Mr Chishiba (Kafulafuta): Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on Programme 1002, Activity 020 ─ Labour Day ─ K309, 250, 000. Why has this figure increased almost twice in 2013, from K166 million in 2012. What is this money going to be used for?

Mr Taima: Mr Chairperson, this is, generally, as a result of an anticipated rise of costs. Further, an even more important point is that we expect to have an increase because we want to allow more members of staff to participate in the Labour Day activity.

I thank you, Sir.

Vote 33/01 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 33/02 ─ (Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry ─ Planning and Information Department) ─ K20, 342, 643, 791)

Dr Kazonga: Mr Chairperson, I am on Page 539 …


The Chairperson: Order!

I am uncomfortable and do not know how many times I should say this. I think that you are setting a very bad example. I also think that this is something you can follow. This is a Budget. So, can you tone down on your consultations.

Continue, please.

Dr Kazonga: Mr Chairperson, may I have clarification on Programme 1012, Activity 230 ─ 
Establishment of One-Stop Shop ─ K1, 200, 000, 000 and Activity 711 ─ Operationalisation of One-Stop Shop ─ K1, 550, 000, 000, respectively. May I know what each of these two Activities entails so that I appreciate the need for those two provisions?

Mr Taima: Mr Chairperson, Programme 1012, Activity 230 ─ Establishment of One-Stop Shop ─ K1, 200, 000, 000, is meant for the establishment of these One-Stop shops.  Activity 711 ─ Operationalisation of One-Stop shop ─ K1, 550, 000, 000 is meant for the operationalisation of the One-Stop shops.

Sir, the hon. Member might have noticed that, under Activity 711, we are creating a new budget line. This means that we are, basically, splitting what was put together previously, under Activity 230.

I thank you, Sir.

Vote 33/02 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 33/04 ─ (Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry ─ Industry Department ─ K13, 760, 167, 872)

Dr Kazonga: Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on Programme 1006, Activity 076 ─ Zambia-Malawi-Mozambique Growth Triangle (ZMMGT) ─ Nil. There was a provision of K500 million this year, but there is no provision for next year. May I know why?

Mr Taima: Mr Chairperson, discussions are still underway on how we should proceed with this programme. That is why there is no provision for next year.

I thank you, Sir.{mospagebreak}

Mr Simbao: Mr Chairperson, I seek clarification on Programme 1001, Activity 004 ─ Staff Welfare ─ Nil. Why has the Government decided to ignore this Vote this year?

Mr Taima: Mr Chairperson, like I said earlier, this is expected to be seen being repeated under different departments because the ministry has gone into an agreement, yet to be concretised, whereby a bank will be the one to provide loans to members of staff, not the ministry.

I thank you, Sir.

Vote 33/04 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 33/05 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

Vote 33/06 ordered to stand part of the Estimates.

VOTE 07 ─ (Office of the Auditor-General ─ K85, 044, 908, 661)

The Vice-President: Mr Chairperson, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to present the Budget for the Office of the Auditor-General for 2013. 

Sir, let me first re-affirm the Government’s commitment to the promotion of good governance, transparency and accountability through strengthening of oversight institutions. 

The Office of the Auditor-General is a public office that has a constitutional mandate to audit public accounts, accounts of statutory corporations and any other institutions that receive Governments subventions, including donor-funded projects, and to report to Parliament on how public resources have been utilised.

Mr Chairperson, the office is key to the promotion of good governance, accountability and transparency in the utilisation of public resources. A strong Office of the Auditor-General greatly assists Parliament in strengthening its oversight role. This is because the office ensures that all monies expended by the Executive have been applied to the purposes for which they were appropriated by this august House and in accordance with the applicable rules and financial regulations. In addition, the office gives the assurance that all revenues collected have been properly accounted for.

Sir, in view of my Government’s commitment to uplifting the living standards of our citizenry, which has seen increased funding to various projects, the need for a well-functioning Office of the Auditor-General cannot be over-emphasised. The office is on the front-line of facilitating accountability and transparency of resource mobilisation and utilisation. Indeed, we would like to see that every kwacha raised and every kwacha spent goes to fulfilling our commitment of delivering quality services to our people. My Government will, therefore, make every effort to support the office by allocating sufficient funds for the execution of its planned activities.

Sir, the House might recall that, in 2012, the Office of the Auditor-General was allocated K77.7 billion for both personal emoluments and recurrent departmental expenditure. As of September 2012, K53.2 billion, representing 68.4 per cent of the 2012 approved Budget, had been released. These funds have and continue to facilitate the audit facilities for the financial year ending 31st December 2011, whose report will be made available by 31st December, 2012. 

Mr Chairperson, as you may be aware, the 2013 Budget for the Office of the Auditor-General will be for the auditing of this calendar year’s accounts. A year in which the Government, in its aim to uplift the living standards of people, has been releasing more funds towards poverty reduction programmes (PRPs). In view of this, the office requires support from all stake holders to do a good job. 

Sir, in meeting the expectations of various stakeholders, the office is keen to increase its office coverage from the current 83 per cent. In addition to the financial audit, the office also intends to conduct more value-for-money audits like performance, environmental and information technology systems audits. In doing these value-for-money audits, we are able to access the economy, efficiency and effectiveness in the utilisation of public resources. Forensic and investigation audits will also be undertaken as the need arises.

Mr Chairperson, in view of what I have highlighted, I seek the approval of this august House to pass the Budget of the Office of the Auditor-General.

I thank you, sir.

The Chairperson: We have normally been very agreeable on this Head. Anyway, any further debate?

Mr Mucheleka (Lubansenhi): Mr Chairperson, I thank you for the opportunity to contribute to the policy statement by His Honour the Vice-President on the Auditor-General’s Vote. 

Sir, while appreciating what the Vice-President has indicated, I wish to state, from the outset, that the funding to this important institution is certainly not adequate. It is true that a 20 per cent increment has been given. In nominal terms this might appear to be a significant increment. However, in real terms, it is almost as if nothing has been done. 

Sir, as His Honour the Vice-President said, this is a very important institution in the good governance of this country, especially with specific reference to transparency and accountability. One wishes that it could be adequately funded, especially since the statements that have come from the Executive indicate that the procurement processes may be decentralised. Further, the increased number of districts means that the scope of work will increase. However, if you relate this to the available resources, you will see that they fall short of what should be given to this important institution. 

Sir, we have challenges in this office with regard to its being a constitutional office and how we need to strengthen it. One still hopes that, as we noted yesterday while discussing the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ), the current Constitutional Review process will take steps to further strengthen this institution in line with the supreme audit institutions declarations, such as the Lima and Mexico declarations, which look at how we can strengthen these institutions and give them autonomy. This office should be freed from interference, especially by the Executive. 

Mr Chairperson, His Honour the Vice-President has referred to the issue of transparency and accountability in the use of resources that are meant for poverty reduction. However, it is true that the Office of the Auditor-General has worked hard under difficult conditions. It has produced reports that have shown irregularities, especially in the use of funds meant for poverty reduction programmes in sectors like health, agriculture, water and sanitation, and infrastructure development. 

Sir, we used to talk about the misuse of resources in the previous administration. What has changed? It appears that not much has. The Executive should seriously strengthen this important institution. In its current form, the Auditor-General’s Office is not able to carry out its work effectively because of inadequate funding, irregular intervals of the disbursement of funds and, sometimes, outright non-disbursement of funds for certain programmes. 

Mr Chairperson, it is worrying to see hon. Ministers point out who is more corrupt than the other, ...

Hon. Muntanga: Aah! Which Minister?

Mr Muchekela: ... you get very worried. It means that it is possible that there is some sort of interference in the work of the Auditor-General’s Office. We want this institution to be freed from the control of the Executive. Let it, in line with various international declarations on supreme audit institutions, carry out its work without any form of interference.

Mr Chairperson, it is sad that some of the erring officers in the previous administration have easily transformed and aligned themselves with the new administration. We are aware of some people who have even been promoted. What does that tell you about the commitment on the fight against corruption? We should ensure that the meagre resources we have are used effectively to better the livelihoods of our people.

Sir, it is no surprise that, when you look at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), … 

Mr Chilangwa: On a point of order, Sir.

The Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Mr Chilangwa: Mr Chairperson, is the learned hon. Member of Parliament for Lubansenshi … 

Hon. Government Members: He is not learned.

Mr Chilangwa: … in order to start debating corruption, which is coming under a different Head, instead of zeroing-in on the Head that we are debating currently? The Head we are debating is not corruption, but the Auditor-General’s Office. Is it, maybe, a question of failing to differentiate between the two? 

I need your serious ruling, Sir.

The Chairperson: The serious ruling is that some of these offices can do all sorts of work, including handling corruption-related matters. So, let the hon. Member debate. 

You may continue, Hon. Mucheleka.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mucheleka: Mr Chairperson, when you look at the UNDP Human Development Report, Zambia is ranked 164 out of 187. These statistics are worrying. The question is: where are we going from here? We all supported the change that Zambians craved for. Unfortunately, Zambians are getting disappointed. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mucheleka: Sir, one way of demonstrating that you are really serious and want to effect positive change is by freeing some of these important constitutional offices, such as the Auditor-General’s Office. Give it the mandate to do its work. You should strengthen it so that we do not just remove people from their positions and, afterwards, the same people are promoted. Some of the culprits in the previous administration are holding very important offices in the current one. 


Mr Mucheleka: What does that tell you? How committed are you to ensuring that the resources that are meant for the poor people are, indeed, used for the intended purpose? If you look at the Auditor-General’s Report, you will find that there were many poverty reduction activities that were meant to be undertaken in Lubansenshi Constituency, but the funds did not serve the intended purpose. They were stolen. There were many corrupt activities that the Auditor-General’s Office, working under very difficult conditions, was able to uncover. So, we should ask ourselves this question: Where do we go from here?

Sir, we should be transparent and allow the President to do his work, instead of holding him captive. He is very determined to strengthen these institutions. However, some people who want to use the President to ascend to political power think that they can hold him captive and compromise and weaken these institutions so that they can carry on with their activities. That will not be allowed. Zambians are seeing and the civil society is watching Parliament …

Mr Mucheleka drank some water.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mucheleka: Mr Chairperson, it is worrying. The only time that we shall say, “Well done PF administration!” is when you demonstrate that you can free these institutions. The President might mean well, but there are those who think they can use him to ascend to political power. That will not happen. 

Mr Muntanga interjected.


The Chairperson: Order!

Mr Mucheleka: Mr Chairperson, in the same way we talked about the ECZ, the Auditor-General’s Office requires adequate funding and an enabling environment for it to be able to do its work. We have the lady, Mrs Anna Chifungula, as Auditor-General, and she has done very well under difficult conditions together with her staff. They need support, which should not be a mere indication of an increased budget when, in fact, you have not, yet the scope of work has increased. You are now taking corruption into the provinces where you say that the Zambia Public Procurement Authority (ZPPA) will just provide an oversight. What are you doing? It means that the authority will have a lot of work to do because of those cadres you have appointed in the provinces as Permanent Secretaries (PSs) and District Commissioners (DCs), who are not adding any value to this country. That, too, cannot be allowed.

Mr Chairperson, I want to seriously call upon the Executive to support this office. It does not even have to wait until the Constitution comes through. It can begin to make some amends in order to strengthen this important office.

Mr Speaker, with these remarks, I wish to reluctantly support this budget while hoping that His Honour the Vice-President will come back and, at least, put some more money into this important institution. 

I thank you, Mr Chairperson. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Chairperson, I want to render my qualified support to the Budget on the Floor of this House and thank my colleague, the hon. Member of Parliament for Lubansenshi, for adequately addressing some of the issues that I wanted to raise.

Mr Chairperson, this is my twelfth year in this House, and my twelfth time to debate a vote on the Office of the Auditor-General. During the last eleven years, the House has been reminding the Executive of the inadequacies of the powers of the Auditor-General. However, to date, nothing much has changed. I am saddened to note that the Office of the Auditor-General has been deliberately weakened by those in authority. We have noted, as hon. Members of the Opposition, that, when members of the Executive get involved in financial intransigencies, the Office of the Auditor-General is loudly quiet. Immediately one is fired from the Executive, the Office of the Auditor-General will wake up from slumber and follow up issues that individual was involved in, which should not be the case. 

Mr Chairperson, the Auditor-General’s Office, as a watchdog institution, is supposed to be cognisant of the issues of impropriety in public affairs. It should conduct its affairs professionally and impartially but, alas, we have noted a number of issues that hinge on impartiality. As the Opposition, we also expect the Auditor-General to advise the Executive that some of those persons who have been appointed as controlling officers are not qualified to hold those offices. If they are not qualified, they should not continue being accorded the privilege of being controlling officers. That is the responsibility of the Auditor-General, but her office is loudly quiet on the appointment of controlling officers that have been made by our colleagues on your right side. Most of the controlling officers who have been appointed have no qualifications to hold those positions. 

Mr Chikwanda interjected.

The Chairperson: Order!

Hon. Minister of Finance, please, do not engage the person on the Floor. 

Can the hon. Member continue.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, for the benefit of the hon. Minister of Finance, if a person is not qualified to hold the position of PS and be able to manage the finances of that particular office, the Auditor-General must be able to advise the hon. Minister of Finance on that issue. If one is not qualified to be a controlling officer, there is no way that person can manage the finances of the country.

Mr Chikwanda: On a point of order, Mr Chairperson.

The Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Mr Chikwanda: Mr Chairperson, I reluctantly raise a point of order, but Hon. Mwiimbu has got a very vast knowledge of law and has an enormous capacity to debate. However, is he in order to mislead the House into thinking that the Ministry of Finance would have anything to do with the appointment of PSs? These are constitutional officers appointed by His Excellency the President, and there is no law anywhere where even the Auditor-General can advise the President on the appointment of PSs, except to the extent that they have committed offences but, even then, the channels followed are different from the ones he is proposing. 

I need your serous ruling, Mr Chairperson.

The Chairperson: Order!

The hon. Minister of Finance has cleverly tried to subvert the ruling of the Chair but, be that as it may, you can take his point of order into account as you debate. 

Can the hon. Member continue.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, gladly…

The Chairperson: Order!

Business was suspended from 1815 hours until 1830 hours.


Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, before business was suspended, I was about to thank you most sincerely for advising me to take note of the point of order that had been raised by the hon. Minister of Finance. In doing so, I would like to remind the hon. Minister of Finance that the office of the PS is not a constitutional office as per the law obtaining in this country that was passed in this House, and ...

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: … that controlling officers in this country are appointed by his office, through the Office of the Secretary to the Treasury.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Chikwanda indicated assent by nodding his head.

Mr Mwiimbu: I can see he is acceding to my argument.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, that is the position. I never indicated that PSs are appointed by his office, but that the controlling officers are.

Mr Mwamba entered the Assembly Chamber.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, I recognise the presence of Hon. GBM (Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba) in the House.

Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, I was making the point that the Auditor-General, in the execution of her duties, must comment on the capacity of those who are appointed as controlling officers. If the controlling officers do not have the requisite qualifications, they will not be able to manage the finances of the Republic of Zambia on behalf of the hon. Minister of Finance.

Mr Lubinda: Correct. That is true.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, I also want to state that, every year, the Office of the Auditor-General makes a number of recommendations on the financial improprieties in a number of organisations in the country. As the situation obtains, currently, the Auditor-General merely makes recommendations. We would like to appeal to the Government, through His Honour the Vice-President, to give the Auditor-General some powers of prosecution so that those who violate financial regulations are held to account by her office.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, it does not make sense that, every year, this House debates the glaring anomalies in the Auditor-General’s Report, yet nothing is done about them. We need to give the Auditor-General’s office powers to take punitive action against those who abuse public resources.

Mr Chairperson, I also want to appeal to the hon. Government Members that the same zeal with which they used to debate and urge the former Government to ensure that those who have questionable backgrounds and no qualities to hold public offices should not be appointed should be seen even now that they are the Government.

Hon. Opposition Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, together, we used to condemn our colleagues in the MMD for continuing to recycle individuals who were abusing public resources. The same situation is obtaining in the PF Government. There were a number of senior serving officials who were cited in the Auditor-General’s Report for financial improprieties, but they are still holding those positions.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mbulakulima: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, I am being challenged. Do not raise a point of order because I will start naming them. I can name more than a hundred of them.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

Mr Mbulakulima: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

A point of order on the Chairperson?

Let me remind you that when an hon. Member is debating, they should be provided with the enabling environment to do so. I have always advised that debating while seated is always frowned upon because the rules of the game do not allow that to happen. I hope that you will allow the hon. Member to debate. 

Please, continue.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, if it was not for the rules that state that those who are not in this House should not be named, I was going to name specific individuals …

Hon. UNPD Member: Yes.

Mr Mwiimbu: … who hold very senior positions in the Government, but were cited in the Auditor-General’s Report. Some of them …

Mr Mbulakulima: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Mr Mbulakulima: Mr Chairperson, I thank you for giving me this rare opportunity to rise on a point of order. First of all, let me apologise to my elder brother for interrupting him, but it was not my intention to do so. However, is His Honour the Vice-President in order to keep quiet and not inform this House that, while the situation in Mufumbwe seems to be peaceful, the PF cadres, led by Judge Ngoma, who is supposed to be working at the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO), is busy marking the homes of MMD members with a view to bombing them tonight?

I need your serious ruling.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

The Deputy Chairperson: The ruling is very obvious. The point of order is not sustained for the reason that the rules of the game are very clear on what matters you can raise a point of order on.

Can you, please, continue.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Speaker, this is one of the reasons we are saying that the Auditor-General is weak. The Auditor-General’s Office has allowed officials serving the country and being paid by the people of Zambia to do party work without taking any action.  

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: We urge the Auditor-General’s Office to audit ZESCO. It should ensure that those who are not performing their duties are made to account for the money that they are being paid by this public institution.  

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Mwiimbu: Sir, we need to empower the Auditor-General’s Office to take punitive action through the due process of the law. In this light, I would like to request His Honour the Vice-President, as we embark on the constitution review process, to make the requisite recommendation that constitutional powers be given to the Auditor-General to assume the aforementioned functions.

Finally, I would like to pay tribute to the officers in the Auditor-General’s Office for the diligent work that they have been doing under very difficult circumstances, and appeal to our colleagues in the Government not to interfere with the operations of this office. I also want to appeal to the Auditor-General …

Hon. Government Members: Where are they?

Mr Mwiimbu: … to ensure that the awarding of road contracts, which is also within her domain, is tendered. Lately, we have seen a situation in which contracts are being awarded without any tenders. The same things that we condemned when having tea together in the Opposition are happening. 


Mr Mwiimbu: You want me to reveal?

 Hon. Opposition Member: Ulula!

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! 

Do not engage them. 

You may continue, please.

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, the matter is not in court. 

The contract for the Pedicle Road was awarded to a contractor two weeks after the previous contract was terminated.  When was it tendered? You tell me. 

Hon. UPND Member: Shame!

Mr Mwiimbu: It was not tendered. 

Hon. Opposition Member: Ulula!

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

Allow the hon. Member to debate. There was a challenge from this side and he is giving the facts. 

You may continue, please.


Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, if they want me to start revealing all the road contracts that have been awarded without tender, I can. 

Hon. Opposition Member: Mention them!

Mr Mwiimbu: Mr Chairperson, this is the reason we have been saying that the Road Development Agency (RDA) should not be under the Office of the President. This is because when we debate issues to do with roads, we will also …

Mr Muntanga: We will be hammering State House. 

Mr Mwiimbu: … be debating the presidency because that is where RDA is. 

It is timely advice that you do not allow this process of not tendering to continue. Please, advise the President to take the RDA where it belongs. 

I thank you, Sir. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!{mospagebreak}

Mr Simbao: Mr Chairperson, thank you for giving this opportunity to debate this vote. 

Sir, I want to begin by saying that this is one of the most difficult offices in the country. Almost everyone hates auditors because they are like pathologists. They will come and find something that caused you to do badly or be bad. Working in an auditing institution is very difficult and the people who work in this office really have to contend with a lot of stress because, wherever they go, no one welcomes them and, when they are done with their work, no one wants to agree with their findings.

Mr Chairperson, I am not at all happy with the amount of money that this office has been given. The K85 billion is not enough to bring out all the financial misdeeds in this country. If you really want to muzzle problems by not bringing them out, then you can give the Auditor-General’s Office inadequate funds. In fact, if it were possible, it would be better to give these people a blank cheque so that they are able to go wherever they want and look at all the issues with all the time they need. Without adequate funds, it becomes very difficult for the Auditor-General’s Office to do a very good job. 

Sir, I have seen some of the allocations in the budget such as K10 million payable to a client. What is K10 million? The Auditor-General’s Office will not have enough time to bring out all the required issues. The office will not manage to complete its work because of inadequate funding.

So, Mr Chairperson, the Auditor-General’s Office is one about which we should be very serious. We can play around with other offices, not this one. If we want the Government to do well for the benefit of the people of Zambia, whose money it is using, then we should give this office as much money as it needs.

Sir, this office also needs to be protected because it has had problems when dealing with many cases due to the fact that it has to report to the Executive. I, therefore, urge the Government to ensure that this office starts reporting to Parliament, not anyone else because we are the only people or institution that can protect it. 

Sir, if the Auditor-General’s Office were to start reporting to Parliament, it would be fearless and its officers would be free to investigate anyone. They would be the ones to freely choose who to investigate, instead of being told where to go. All these complaints about the RDA being under State House would not be there. Once again, the Auditor-General’s Office is meant to report to Parliament, not to whoever else it reports. 

Mr Chairperson, it is always very easy to fall prey to the manipulations of whoever is giving you money. In this case, it is very easy for the people working in the Auditor-General’s Office to deal softly with corrupt Government officials. We, as Parliament, even though we allocate money in the Budget to it, do not control it. As such, there would be no need for them to be soft with us. They would treat us just like they treat anyone else. So, I appeal to the Government to look at this issue seriously. For the good of this country, the office of the Auditor-General should be reporting to Parliament.

I thank you, Mr Chairperson.

Mr Muntanga (Kalomo Central): Mr Chairperson, I stand to support the vote for the Auditor-General’s Office, about which many good things have been said, and I join my friends in saying that the Auditor-General has done very well. She has been strong, and I encourage her to continue her good work. In spite of the money allocated to her office not being enough, I urge her to continue working hard because, now, she has more work to do, which includes auditing the K32 trillion that is in the hands of the people on your right.

Mr Chairperson, this money has made some of them excited such that they fight one another. They want tenders so much that they even end up scratching one another.


Mr Muntanga: Sir, I want the Auditor-General to take note of the fact that performance auditing is very important. Her office did a good job in auditing the utilisation of storage facilities at the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) because it brought out pertinent issues. I want the performance auditing function of the Auditor-General to be expanded so that it will show us whether these people have performed according to people’s expectations.

Sir, I would like to see a performance audit of all the vehicles that are purchased using Government funds. I am aware that there is a Government vehicle in Mufumbwe which has had its registration changed to LEA 1922 and is being used for campaigns there.

Hon. Opposition Members: Shame!

Mr Muntanga: Mr Chairperson, the lifespan of that vehicle will not be as good as it would be if it was just doing Government work, instead of being used during campaigns. My friends in the PF, before they took over power, talked about the proper utilisation of Government facilities. They should not forget about that now that they are in power. What has made them change?

Hon. Government Member: Boma.

Mr Muntanga: Sir, a number of them are excited because they are now the Boma, although I am not sure if it is Boma or gong’a.


Mr Muntanga: Gong’a means that which is deceitful. It is a very serious issue. We will now start revealing what each one of them is doing on the Floor of this House. We will start revealing to the Auditor-General what each one of them is doing. They should not think that we do not know what they are doing. 


 Mr Muntanga: Do not challenge me because I will reveal what you do. I am not like the others. If you push me, I will bring it out here.


The Deputy Chairperson: Order! 

Mr Muntanga: So, all of you, be watchful. The Auditor-General’s Office needs support. You will all be laid on the Table.


Mr Muntanga: Mr Chairperson, I am telling these friends of ours to be diligent and use the money for what it is intended. I also want to give advice to the Auditor-General. We trust you very much, wherever you may be right now. You may be listening on the radio. I would like to urge you to check your own officers and make sure that they are sincere, too. We hear stories of them leaking information of audit work even before reports are officially released. They inform the ones being audited about what has been found on them and enable them to be ready. This should be stopped. Assure us that you are sincere, together with all your officers, because, immediately incriminating information is leaked, you are making people to question the integrity of your department. You are also creating an impression in the minds of these people that you can also be corrupted. I know that corruption in this country has become a very bad disease. I am not sure if there is a Government department which is free from it, apart from those who live, independently like Muntanga, …


Mr Muntanga: … because I came in this House fat and I am still fat.


Mr Muntanga: The same goes for GBM, my friend.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order! 

The rules of the game provide that we should not debate ourselves. So, take that into account as you continue.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Chairperson, I am much obliged. I will take that into account.  I, however, have a warning for those who become fat due to the positions they are given because of being part of this House. I have seen that some of them have already become round. 


Mr Kalaba: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Mr Kalaba: Mr Chairperson …


The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

Mr Kalaba: … I rise on a very serious point of order. Is Hon. Muntanga, who is debating so intelligently and craftily, in order to continue challenging your ruling that we should not debate ourselves? Is he in order to continue bringing himself and others in the House into his debate?

The Deputy Chairperson: The ruling is that the hon. Member should confine himself to the subject matter and desist from debating himself or other hon. Members of Parliament.

You may continue, Hon. Muntanga.

Mr Muntanga: Mr Chairperson, I want the work of the Auditor-General’s Office to be extended to all ministries. In this Budget, the biggest allocation is to the Ministry of Finance, which must be properly audited. We must know what goes on there. I do not doubt the hon. Minister. He is an elderly man, but has a lot of crafty people around him who have no property and want to be rich quickly. The young people have found themselves in charge of the money there. That is why they are very happy with the US$750 million Eurobond. Some of the money from this bond will be allocated towards allowances for those in management. I am not going to be surprised to find that this management will include some senior people within the administration of the ministry.

Hon. UPND Member: Look at them.

Mr Muntanga: I am looking at them through the Chairperson.


Mr Muntanga: The K32 trillion Budget can only be successfully utilised for the people of Zambia’s benefit if the Auditor-General is given enough money to do her work. We have become aware that every Government department has been given money for workshops and training. Half of the budget of the ministry we are just from looking at is for tours to represent Zambia in other countries. Even the trade attachés under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs are now supervised by the hon. Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry. When some hon. Ministers finish the money that is allocated for travelling, they start getting money from other allocations so that they can continue travelling. I plead with the Auditor-General to save Zambia. Some of our friends across are hungry for money.


Mr Muntanga: Mr Chairperson, this is why we should ensure that all ministries are audited. Our colleagues on your right should not provoke me because I know what they are doing. All I want is for them to do what they promised. They promised to support the Auditor-General’s Office once they came into power. We warned our friends here (pointing at hon. MMD Members) that, if they did not change, they were going to come to this side. What we said has come to pass. They are now here. They are our friends. It is now their turn to be with us.


Mr Muntanga:  The only people …


The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

You can continue.

Mr Muntanga: … who can advise both the PF and the MMD are the UPND members. 

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: We are clean. 

Hon. Government Member interjected.

Mr Muntanga: Yes, we are the only ones who can correct you.  You have run too fast in one year. Your Honour the Vice-President, you are an honest muzungu.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

Hon. Member, address the Chair and desist from dragging the Vice-President into your debate.

You can continue.

Mr Muntanga: I just want him to know that he is a sincere White man. However, he has a problem because he has a group of people who do not like him. 

Hon. Government Members: Aah!

Mr Muntanga: I can reveal.

Mr Sampa: On a point of order, Sir.

Mr Muntanga: What if they push …

The Deputy Chairperson: A point of order is raised.

Mr Sampa: Mr Chairperson, is the hon. Member who is on the Floor and digressing in his debate in order to make insinuations about his fellow hon. Members without substantiating them?

The Deputy Chairperson: To the extent that the insinuations have not been detailed, the hon. Member may continue debating.

You can continue.

Hon. UPND Members:  Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: Mr Chairperson, it is the insinuations that will protect me. I put a …

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

A ruling has been made. So, continue debating.

Mr Muntanga: Sir, thank you very much. I want those who fit into my insinuation to desist from doing those things that I have mentioned. Those who are scared should stop doing wrong. We want the Auditor-General to be given enough money. The UPND will give the Auditor-General’s Office all the money it will require when we come into power. You should have given the Auditor-General over K100 billion. 

Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Muntanga: We mean well here. If the UPND was in power, the Auditor-General could have been given all the money she needs, including for decentralising the office so that she can operate from these new provinces where there are new projects. With the single-sourcing going on there, if those people involved do not get rich now, they will never be rich because, when we come into Government, all those small contracts that are being entered into will be cancelled. We will arrest you and recover all the money.


Mr Muntanga: There is single-sourcing, creation of new companies, failure to declare your companies and trading in oil. We know what you are involved in and we shall soon lay you on the Table. 

Mr Chairperson, thank you very much.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Ntundu (Gwembe): Mr Chairperson, I thank you very much for giving me the time to add my voice to the debate on the vote for the Auditor-General’s Office.

Mr Chairperson, if I recall very well, our colleagues in the PF, when they were still with us on this side of the House, agreed with us that our core programme for the Zambian budget was, first of all, to strengthen the Office of the Auditor-General. Hon. Lubinda will recall what we needed to do with this office. This office will audit K32 trillion. So, how do you give them K85 billion? We were saying that for these people to be effective, the first thing that we ought to do is look at how much they get. If a person who is going to audit a budget of K50 billion is drawing a salary of K2 million, what will happen? He will be compromised. In South Africa, for instance, the Auditor-General gets more money than the Central Bank Governor. Here, the Bank of Zambia (BoZ) Governor gets more money than the Auditor-General. Why should it be like that? We said, in the UPND, the first thing we were going to do, Hon. Lubinda, remember …

Mr Lubinda: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

Mr Ntundu: Through you, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson:Order!

Please do not drag the hon. Minister into your debate. As you can see, he is following the debate very closely. So, please, desist from dragging him into your debate. 

You may continue.

Mr Ntundu: I only referred to him because he was part of the UPND when we were agreeing that …

Mr Lubinda: On a point of order, Sir.


The Deputy Chairperson:A point of order is raised.

Mr Lubinda: Sir, it is, obviously, a pity that I have to be forced to raise a point of order on the hon. Member for Gwembe, who is struggling very hard to imitate his predecessor, Hon. Kantina, who came to this House to do nothing, but be a malikopo all the time to tell stories pochedza …

The Deputy Chairperson:What is malikopo?


Mr Lubinda: Mr Chairperson, malikopo is story-telling which, in Nyanja, is pochedza m’madzuro, meaning waffling and saying totally nothing. Is he in order to drag me into his very dry debate and insinuate that this Government is not doing what it said it would do, instead of referring to the fact that the budgetary allocation to the Office of the Auditor-General has grown at the same rate as the National Budget and, therefore, that we are being consistent with our intention of empowering that office? Is he in order to drag me into his debate, instead of being intelligent enough to make those calculations?

The Deputy Chairperson: The ruling is that the hon. Member debating is out of order because the rules of debate do not allow a debater to bring the name of another hon. Member of Parliament into his debate. 

Hon. Ntundu, you may continue.

Mr Ntundu: Mr Chairperson, in Tonga, malikopo is talking and parle means ‘to talk’, and we must talk.


Mr Ntundu: The one who should not talk must keep quiet. Sir, we had agreed with the PF that the first thing that we were going to do …

Hon. Government Member: Where?

Mr Ntundu: … was to look at the pay for the Office of the Auditor-General so that, as the billions of kwacha are audited, they have a good pocket and, therefore, not be easily compromised. I was just referring to the Office of the Auditor-General in South Africa. Go and look at the records. It is there in the Parliament Library. You will see how the Office of the Auditor-General operates. That office is well-funded, hence, not easily compromised. The story is the same for Kenya, in case you did not know. This is because they audit a lot of money. You have to live up to your promises. Why are you scared of improving the salaries for the Office of the Auditor-General and empower it? You are scared because you have started giving yourselves contracts and we know this. That is why you are raising these points of order.


Mr Ntundu: We do not want to mention names.


Hon. Member: Mulekeni apwishe.

Mr Ntundu: Just sit down. After all, you are my friend. 

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

May you withdraw that statement?

Mr Ntundu: Mr Speaker, I withdraw my statement.

The Deputy Chairperson: You may continue with the debate.

Mr Ntundu: Mr Speaker, this office is working very hard, as stated by the hon. Member for Kalomo Central. 

Mr Chilangwa: On a point of order, Sir.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

A point of order is raised, but I hope we will not be debating through points of order. Anyway, your point of order is granted.

Mr Chilangwa: Mr Chairperson, I rise on a serious point of order. Is the hon. Member of Parliament debating in order to fail to acknowledge that the Auditor-General’s budget for last year was K77,732,965,545, but has been raised to K85,044,908,661 this year? Can he continue insinuating that it has not been raised?

I need your serious ruling.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

The serious ruling is that the hon. Member can debate what he has prepared.

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Ntundu: Mr Chairperson, I have seen that there is an increment of K7,311,943,116. We are not here to joke. The K7,311,943,116 increment is nothing for the staff in the Auditor-General’s Office to undertake their core functions. You must listen and support this office by giving it more money. What are you scared of? I have just been referring to the Office of the Auditor-General in South Africa and Kenya. The ruling parties there have empowered this office. Do you know how much the Auditor-General gets in Kenya or South Africa? Go to the library and you will find the figures.


Mr Ntundu: The Auditor-General in South Africa gets more than twenty times what the Auditor-General gets here. If you will not empower these people, …

Hon. Government Member: What is their GDP?

Mr Ntundu: Mr Chairperson, they are there to improve the GDP. They should not sit there and do nothing to improve the GDP.

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

The rules of procedure do not allow cross debates. If an hon. Member has been given the chance to debate, allow him to debate. I always remind hon. Members that it is not honourable to specialise in debating while seated and making running commentaries on virtually every hon. Member who debates. I think that you should desist from that. It is dishonourable. 

You may continue, Hon. Ntundu.

Mr Ntundu: Mr Chairperson, our words are falling on deaf ears. It is just a matter of time. We are going to make a difference when we go that side. 

Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!

Mr Ntundu: Mr Chairperson, when we take over power, we shall make a real difference because we know what needs to be done in this office. You are taking this as a joke. You are not serious. You must take this seriously because there is no time to joke. If you do not empower this office, you will yield nothing. 

Mr Chairperson, last week, I had a chat with a good friend from the Ministry of Home Affairs who agreed with me when I told him that we need to strengthen the Office of the Auditor-General and give it more money. If there is a way, let us give that office more money so that staff from there can go to Gwembe and Kabwata, and check what is happening there.


Mr Ntundu: They can also go to Nchanga, Kawambwa, Bahati ...

Hon. Opposition Members: And Lusaka Central.

Mr Ntundu: Yes, and Lusaka Central.


Mr Ntundu: Mr Chairperson, we have already heard what they are doing. We know where they got the money that they used for campaigns in Msanzala. We know where you got it.

Hon. Government Members: Where?

Mr Ntundu: Go to the library because you do not read.


The Deputy Chairperson: It appears that the hon. Member spends a good amount of time in the library, which is very encouraging. 

Please, continue.

Mr Ntundu: Mr Chairperson, in the library, there are newspapers from …

The Deputy Chairperson: Order!

(Debate adjourned).



[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]

(Progress reported)




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

Question put and agreed to.

The House adjourned at 1915 hours until 1430 hours on Thursday, 8th November, 2012.