Tuesday, 10th March, 2020

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Tuesday, 10th March, 2020


The House met at 1430 hours


[MR SPEAKER in the Chair]












The Minister of Higher Education (Dr Mushimba): Mr Speaker, I thank you for giving me this opportunity to render another ministerial statement, this time, on the student loans we offer, their administration and recoveries as applied to our public universities.


Mr Speaker, from the outset, let me say that the way the Government facilitates education in its public universities has undergone transformation. It changed from a bursary scheme where students had no obligation to pay back to a loan scheme with students having to pay back into the revolving fund once they graduate. Further, new criteria were adopted for the award of the loans as follows: 30 per cent to rural applicants, 30 per cent to female applicants, 10 per cent to those with disabilities and the rest to the rest of the applicants.


Mr Speaker, the transition from a bursary scheme to a loan scheme affects all the students who attended any of the public universities and were financially facilitated by the Government from 2004 onwards.


Mr Speaker, the loan scheme that we are running in my ministry is one of the many interventions that the Government is using in response to the actualisation of the fourth pillar of the Seventh National Development Plan (7NDP) that speaks to enhancing human capital development.


Mr Speaker, with the introduction of the loan scheme, the bursary scheme has been phased out such that all the students now under Government sponsorship at any of our seven public universities are on the loan scheme. It is also worth noting that despite the transformation of the scheme, the demand on this facility continues to increase. About 90 per cent of all students in tertiary institutions apply to get this facility.


Mr Speaker since 2004, over 45,000 students have been supported through the student loan scheme across our public universities. In 2018, the Higher Education Loans and Scholarship Board started the process of recovering these loans as per their mandate. They started with all the beneficiaries who are in the civil service through the Government payroll system. They keep identifying all those who benefitted from this facility who are on the Government payroll.


Mr Speaker, last year, the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA), the National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA), the formal banking sector, the Immigration Department, utility companies such as Lusaka Water and Sewerage Company (LWSC) or Digital Satellite Television (DStv) were incorporated in the process of tracking everyone who accessed the loans from 2004 via their National Registration Cards (NRCs). A tool is now being consolidated that will integrate into all these institutions to ensure all beneficiaries are tracked, identified and asked to start paying back. If we have any hon. Members of Parliament in here that accessed the loan facility from 2004 upwards and have not started paying back yet, I ask that they see me at tea break …




Dr Mushimba: … so that they sign up and start paying back. Next time I come back to the House, I will come with a list of all defaulting hon. Members for Mr Speaker to sanction them. Further, it is worth noting that the amnesty period for self identification and coming forward will end soon. All those who will not have come forward beyond the amnesty period will draw a penalty for each day they do not show themselves and start paying back, whether they are in formal or informal employment. From the time the Higher Education Loans and Scholarships Board commenced the recoveries in 2018 up to the end of January 2020, a total of K49.5 million has been recovered from the Government payroll from civil servants. Other recoveries outside the Government payroll system or from the private sector total K3.4 million for the same period, bringing the total to K52.9 million that has been recovered from 2018 to end of January 2020. It is worth noting that some of the recoveries from the private sector are from individuals who have come forward on their own accord and have paid. At this juncture, I would like to take my time to recognise and thank them for their patriotism and for taking personal responsibility and leading the rest of us in paying back what we owe. It is such personal conviction, values and integrity that this loan scheme depends on for its future success. The onus is on all of us who took these loans to pay back without the Government sending the police or me bringing names to Parliament. This is absolutely a necessity.


Mr Speaker, the recipients of the loans are expected to repay their loans in totality over a period of four to ten years with 15 per cent interest that accounts for the lost value of the money over time and the administration of the loan scheme. The monies we have recovered so far of over K52.9 million have supported an additional 1,432 students in our universities who otherwise would not have received sponsorship from the Government.


Mr Speaker, in conclusion, as I have alluded to already, my ministry is scaling up efforts to increase recoveries in order to ensure that the Higher Education Loans and Scholarships Board extends its coverage and enables more young Zambians to access the fund to help them access quality higher education. We have committed ourselves to increasing enrolment numbers in our tertiary institutions and ensuring that all citizens are given a chance to access higher education and equip themselves for the new knowledge based economy of today and tomorrow.


I thank you, Sir.


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


Mr Mwiimbu (Monze Central): Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has indicated that those who are failing to pay the loans they obtained from the Government will suffer sanctions. Taking into account that the majority of our students who graduate from universities and other higher institutions of learning cannot manage to obtain jobs in Zambia, what measures is the ministry going to take to ensure that students who do not find jobs are not punished by the Government?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for that very important question. The intention of the Government is certainly not to punish these students, especially if they genuinely can provide evidence that they are not in formal employment or informal employment and have no access to any means of financial resources to pay. We ask them to come forward and state their case. We can work a system that can support their financial position. Nevertheless, the intention is not to punish anyone.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Kabanda (Serenje): Mr Speaker, going forward, how is the hon. Minister going to ensure that only deserving students access the loans?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker that question is very loaded, but it seems very simple. We have heard a lot of talk in certain corners of society that access to these loans has been restricted to people who are probably along the line of rail, people who are able to see the adverts or people who know how to submit an application. As a result, deserving students tend to be left out when they do not fall into those categories. We are aggressively addressing that as a ministry through sensitisation across the country. We are even discussing ways to incorporate the local government in districts so that the sensitisation can be where the people are. People should be advised on how and when to apply for them to access these facilities. Like I said, the loan facility criterion is 30 per cent rural population, 30 per cent female applicants, 10 per cent people with disabilities and the rest is for the rest of the population. Through enhanced sensitisation and presence in schools and districts, everyone will know of this and they can apply at the right time and be able to access this facility when they meet the criterion and the qualifications.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr A. C. Mumba (Kantanshi): Mr Speaker, it is a fact that everyone benefitting from public funds should find a way of paying back. That was the centre of the ministerial statement. Has the ministry done any studies or picked any lessons from other economies like the United Kingdom (UK), South Africa (SA) and the United States of America (USA) where student loan facilities are provided and then later on those who benefitted pay back? Does the ministry have a clear desk taking into consideration that our economy is loaded with many small businesses which are being managed by university graduates?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, my ministry has undertaken the studies that the hon. Member alluded to. We travelled to countries near and far to see how their loan recovery mechanisms for students have been set up and established, how they do the recoveries and the penalties that are applied where people wilfully do not want to pay. Those are the lessons we are implementing into this system that I spoke about. The system that we have expanded uses NRCs. Everyone gets an NRC when they reach the age of sixteen or eighteen years. That is the number that we are using. We are plugging the NRC numbers into the Immigration Department system, the ZRA system and utility company systems so that in future, when you call LWSC to connect water to your house, for example, you will be flagged as having got a loan and you never paid it, and because you have not paid it, you are a high risk customer who may struggle to pay the company. So before you get connected to water, you have to pay the loan, something to that effect. We have learned lessons and we are going to use them.


Mr Speaker, let me go back to the question that was asked earlier about people who took loans but are not employed. When you are educated and you have a university degree, most likely, you are going to have employment. In fact, 85 per cent of everyone who took loans from 2004 up to date is in formal employment. We are able to track them and we are asking that everyone starts to pay.

I thank you, Sir.


Mr Ng’onga (Kaputa): Mr Speaker, the policy to allocate student loans to 10 per cent people with disability is a very good policy which I definitely commend. What are the conditions required for disabled people based in rural places who are not registered with the Zambia Agency for Persons with Disabilities (ZAPD) to access student loans?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, all the loans that that given are merit based loans. Everyone who applies for the loan should have passed Grade 12 with the points that are required. If you are disabled, you have to identify yourself as such through the laid down systems. Furthermore, you will have access to the 10 per cent that is specially put for the disabled. We will do more sensitisation around this just like the rest of the criteria for the application process. We are throwing around ideas on how to do that. I mentioned that we will sensitise the local government, the District Education Board Secretary (DEBS) offices and all high schools where O-level examinations are offered. People from the Higher Education Loans and Scholarship Board will be going to these places to explain the loan facility. I think that through sensitisation, some of the people who ordinarily may have been left behind will be taken care of, including the disabled.


I thank you, Sir.


Prof. Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda): Mr Speaker, one of the major problems in loan recovery has been tracing, monitoring and identifying the graduates who have benefited from the scheme. The hon. Minister has made reference to the fact that his ministry is making efforts to facilitate the recovery programme and he has related this to information and communication technology (ICT). I would like him to shed a little more light on where the ministry is in terms of the utilisation of digital technology to effectively and efficiently recover the student loans.


 Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, I would like to thank Prof. Lungwangwa for the good question. Again, he has asked like a professor in terms of the techniques we are using.


Sir, he is right in that the biggest advantage we have now is the ICT and digital platforms. Almost everyone now is creating a digital footprint. So, it is from their digital footprint that we will be able to pick and make sure that we identify everyone who needs to be identified. Earlier on, I spoke about a digital system being put together and this is what is going to plug into the various systems like what is in the banks, the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) and many other institutions which we are going to plug into have. So, there will be a digital based platform and this will identify the person based on the key identifier which is the National Registration Card (NRC). So, it is from there that we will be able to know all those who have not come forward.


Sir, like I said earlier, many have come forward and so far we have identified 19,000 beneficiaries. So, we have almost 50 per cent of the people who have accessed the facility. Further, out of the 19,000 beneficiaries, 85 per cent of them are in formal employment. Therefore, for now, we are doing okay. So, we just need to find the other 50 or 52 per cent. We are going to make sure that through the digital platforms and the systems we are developing and plugging into all the institutions which interact with people daily, we will find the 52 per cent or so that have not been identified before the amnesty period ends.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Mwila (Chimwemwe): Mr Speaker, I heard the hon. Minister say that 30 per cent of the student loans shall be restricted to the applicants from the rural areas. I would like to find out exactly how the ministry will go about this and ensure that 30 per cent is captured, so that we do not pick students from urban areas.


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, the identification of the rural applicants is a process. Firstly and obviously, the school they probably went to is in the rural areas. However, sometimes we should also know that there are some students who leave Lusaka to go to a school in Shikamushile in Chifunabuli District. So, we will make sure that a student profile is obviously developed which is going to help the ministry in the identification. So the students that may come from the urban areas, but went to rural areas maybe, can be taken away from the 30 per cent which is ordinarily is supposed to speak to the people in the rural areas and only people who live in the rural areas, went to school in the rural areas and their access to resources is predetermined by the fact that they stay in the rural area.


 Mr Speaker, I thank you.


Mr Jere (Livingstone): Mr Speaker, I would like to find out what mechanisms the ministry has put in place to recover from the students who graduated, but they are now working in the Diaspora.


 Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, indeed, we have quite a few who have gone through our school system and this speaks to the quality of our education system in Zambia. Many of our colleagues who graduated are in the region and are working. For example, some are in the west, such as in the United Kingdom (UK), United States of America (USA) and are working using the education they received from our learning institutions. We should applaud ourselves for that.


Sir, like I spoke earlier, the ministry has identified agents or institutions that interact with people almost on a daily basis. So, using the digital platforms we are developing, we will plug in into the systems which will flag them. For instance, I spoke about the Immigration Department. If one is working in South Africa or the UK, the point of entry into Zambia when they come back will be the airport or Chirundu Border post or wherever. Through such points, the immigration status is established. The passport is taken, scanned, looked at and it will flag anyone as owing the university or the Loans and Scholarships Board. So, at that point, obviously, instructions will be given on how to make good on the loan because one may be told not to leave the country if they do not make good on what they owe.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


 Ms Mwape (Mkushi North):  Mr Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. Minister for the educative statement.


Sir, the hon. Minister has indicted that the ministry has moved from bursaries to the loan scheme and that the transformation is on high demand. The Government is doing very well, especially that 30 per cent of the loans are allocated to the female students and that the Government is very particular on education.


Sir, I would like to find out from him if the scheme is insured in the case of death. How is the Government recovering the monies because the Government might have been losing money in situations where someone who acquired the loan died?


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, that is a very good question and believe it or not, I actually did not think through it even when I was sitting with staff to go through the possible questions. This is was not one of them. However, it is something which I have taken note of. If we have not insured this scheme, then I will make sure that the next time I have an opportunity to speak on this, I will bring the reasons why we have not insured the scheme.


 Mr Speaker, I thank you.


 Mr Muchima (Ikeleng’i): Mr Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. Minister for the statement because he is doing very well.


Mr Speaker, to capture students for loans or whatever it was called previously, we used to use the Social Welfare Department which is spread throughout the whole country. I would like to know how the ministry is managing considering that the Ministry of Community Development and Social Welfare is no longer involved. What mechanisms has the ministry put in place so that it can capture as many students as possible in the rural parts who qualify for the 30 per cent reserved for rural applicants?


 Dr Mushimba:  Mr Speaker, that is a very important question.


Sir, further, I like the way he has put the question because if the community and Social Welfare Department used to be good and partnered in capturing the rural applicants, but for one reason or the other, we are not doing it as good as we used to, we need to go back to that. I spoke to the discussion we have had in the ministry in terms of sensitisation and the offices we can work with across the country such as the District Education Board Secretary (DEBS) offices, which exist in every district and the local council.


So, if our community development officers are there, we would like as many of these offices as possible so that they can help us with the task of identifying the 30 per cent which is a preserve of the rural areas. We will make sure that as we move forward by brushing up on all these partnerships to make sure that the intended beneficiaries, indeed, benefit.


Sir, I thank you.                                  


Mr Siwale (Mafinga): Mr Speaker, let me take this opportunity to commend the Government for upgrading most colleges into universities. This is a plus for the Patriotic Front (PF) Government.


Sir, does the Government have a policy of offering bursaries to the colleges that have been ungraded into universities? Secondly, will that policy also apply to these colleges that are almost dotted around the country?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, the Government’s position is that all the students accessing any of the public universities should be able to apply for the loans. Many of these universities are just completing the process of being upgraded and being recognised as such. Some of them may not have the loan scheme yet because they are transitioning from a college to a university. Until that transition ends, there is some administrative delay there that is taking place.


However, right now, many of them, for example, Kapasa Makasa University, is the newest that is now on the bursary and loans scheme. Kwame Nkrumah and Mukuba Universities are also on bursary and loans scheme. Chalimbana University is about to finish the process. So, the answer is that, once all the seven public universities finish the administrative transformation, they will have access to these loans.


Mr Speaker, I thank you.


Mr Michelo (Bweengwa): Mr Speaker, there are some students who went to work outside the country upon graduation. How does the ministry ensure that those graduates are paying?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, that question was asked earlier by Hon. Jere from Livingstone, but for the benefit of the hon. Member, who may have just come in, I said that the system that is being developed to make sure that we plug into institutions and finish the identification of the rest of the beneficiaries will also plug into the Immigration Department. So, upon you coming back home to visit, you will be identified and advised on how much you owe and how you should settle it before you leave. If you do not settle it, certainly it will impact you leaving the country because you will have a responsibility that you need to take care of before you go back.


Mr Speaker, I thank you.


Mr Daka (Msanzala): Mr Speaker, what is the total cost of sponsoring a student under this new loan scheme?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, education has become extremely expensive and this is something that the ministry is looking at in terms of the cost of education in our universities that studies are ongoing. We want to optimise the fee structure to make sure that we do not make university education a preserve of the rich. However, currently, we are spending between K16,000 to K37,000 per student we are sponsoring depending on where they are, if it is a college or a public university such as CBU or UNZA.


Mr Speaker, I thank you.


Dr Musokotwane (Liuwa): Mr Speaker, we are coming from one situation where student financing was on one extreme end of the spectrum, namely grants. Now, we are going to the other extreme, meaning that every student must be obliged to get a loan. The Government is forgetting about all the other possible mixtures in the middle.


Sir, given the fact that even in very rich countries like the United States of America (USA), Germany and Japan, scholarships are there, why is the Government totally removing scholarships out of its arsenal of financing higher education?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, the statement that I brought today centred on loan recoveries and how we transitioned largely from bursaries or grants to loans. Maybe what I need to make clear regarding the question that he has asked is that the institution that offers the administration of what I have been speaking about is called the Loans and Scholarships Board. There is a scholarship aspect in that name. It means, therefore, that we have not totally thrown away the scholarship component. We are still in the midst of this transition and still offering scholarships. There are some students that are being sponsored by the Government. For many reasons, when they win these scholarships either in the country or outside the country, we have not stopped the scholarships.


Mr Speaker, I thank you.


Mr Samakayi (Mwinilunga): Mr Speaker, considering the fact that they are very few places in public universities, is the ministry considering extending the loan facility to private universities? How is it also balancing the issue of equity across the provinces?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, we are thinking and actively pursuing expanding this envelope of giving these loans and we want to make sure that even the private universities that have all the accreditation and the quality of education ...




Mr Speaker: Order on the Left!


Dr Mushimba: ... they offer has been ascertained, their students should be able to apply and access these loans. In the near future, when we have recovered all this money it will support private universities. The Government continues to put in K46 million every month into this scholarships and loans fund.


Mr Speaker, the question on equity is a bit difficult, but the commitment that the Government has is that every province where there are Grade 12s that sat for examinations and have qualified, we will make sure that we give them an opportunity to access this facility. That is why we are going to use the community development offices and DEBS offices to make sure that the reach is there and everyone who needs to get educated is identified.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Speaker: I will take the last four questions in the following order: hon. Members for Chama South Constituency, Solwezi West Constituency, Senga Hill Constituency and the last intervention will be from the hon. Member for Mitete.


Mr Mung’andu (Chama South): Mr Speaker, the most important component of these loans or bursaries, as we used to call them, was the meal allowance because that component is what kept us surviving whilst at the university. Is that component still embedded in the loan scheme? Are the beneficiaries of these loans still being paid that monthly allowance for their upkeep?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, the removal of meal allowances has been very topical the last couple of years, but the Government position stays the same. Part of the reason the meal allowance was removed was to stretch this envelope to cover all public universities and every student who is in need of this facility to access education. It became unsustainable for the CBU and UNZA to be consuming so much money at the expense of the five public universities and the students who need to go to those public universities. A decision was made to share the responsibility with the parents in the same way we do it in vocational colleges where the Government gives bursaries for tuition, room and board, but the meals are provided by the parents. Let us move to that model. This way, we have opened the envelope and we can now boast that we are sponsoring students on this loan scheme at Kapasa Makasa University and other universities where we did not have this facility.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Kasonso (Solwezi West): Mr Speaker, I need clarity regarding the criteria used for students to acquire these loans and bursaries. Does the selection take into account that mathematics and science are a priority? I ask because we currently have a shortage of science and mathematics teachers.


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) is one of the criterion used in the awarding of these scholarships. I stated that there are 30 per cent rural applicants, 30 per cent female applicants, 10 per cent disabled people and the remainder is for the rest of the applicants. On top of that, 60 per cent of all the applicants are reserved for STEM courses and 30 per cent for the rest.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Simbao (Senga Hill): Mr Speaker, what percentage of revenue is the component of loans to the universities like the University of Zambia (UNZA)? I ask because I want to find out if he has looked at the possibility of offloading this risk to other financial institutions like banks or insurance companies while the Government just guarantees the loans?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, if I understood the question, he is asking the split between tuition that the Government pays on behalf of the students to the universities as a percentage of the income that universities get.


Sir, in the current numbers and using UNZA as an example, the amount that the Government gives every month for the students it is sponsoring is 50 per cent of the overall allocation that the university gets. If we are talking about removing this risk from the universities and if by risk you mean the Government giving this money may be risky and we need to bring in an insurer or a bank, we have been speaking about optimising how we fund our education. One suggestion is that the private sector like banks and other lending institutions should be brought on board. At some point, we may get to a situation where people get loans themselves from the bank and not through the Government. Until we get there, however, I think the system is working well and the Government is committed to making this facility available and having many students, especially the vulnerable, accessing it. We are doing this to address the fourth pillar of the 7NDP of educating the nation.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Mutelo (Mitete): Mr Speaker, how is the Government going to track those who are in informal employment? How are they going to be paying back the loans and how will the Government know where they are and what they are doing in order to recoup the loans?


Dr Mushimba: Mr Speaker, I spoke about the different systems and institutions that people interact with on a daily basis, whether they are in the formal or informal sector. I spoke about the banking sector. Whether people are in the formal or informal sector, they tend to keep a bank account, especially those people along the line of rail. I spoke about the Immigration Department, the ZRA and utility companies. Many people nowadays, regardless of where they live, have some sort of pay TV in their house. We will incorporate all these institutions that people interact with regardless of where they are and through those institutions, we will identify those with loans to pay back and have the conversation that they pay back what they owe.


I thank you, Sir.








234. Mr Miyutu (Kalabo Central) asked the Minister of Home Affairs:


  1. whether the Government is aware that people in the rural parts of Kalabo District are spending nights outside their homes to safeguard themselves against gassing as there are no police patrols being conducted; and
  2. if so, what measures are being taken to beef up security in the rural parts of the district.


The Minister of Home Affairs (Mr Kampyongo): Mr Speaker, the Government is aware that the insecurity which arose from reports of unscrupulous people spraying harmful chemicals on citizens spread from urban to rural areas. As a result, the Zambia Police Service has had several reports including false alarms. However, with regard to Kalabo District, it should be noted that there are no reports of people spending nights outside their homes to safeguard themselves against gassing.


Sir, Kalabo has had two false alarms which were reported on 24th February and 4th March, 2020 in Mapungu and Siluwe respectively. On 24th February, 2020, the Zambia Police Service received a report that a young man been apprehended by members of the public in Mapungu area on an accusation that he had sprayed harmful chemical substances on a woman. However when the woman was examined at the hospital, it was discovered that she had no chemicals substances on her body although she was found with high blood pressure. This was therefore the false alarm.


Mr Speaker, on 4th March, 2020 in Siluwe Village, three men and one woman believed to be cross border traders were apprehended by members of the public on suspicion that they were carrying chemical substances for gassing. However, when the Zambia Police Service conducted a search on the suspects, it was found that the woman was carrying cosmetics in her handbag while the men were carrying gel used to soften hair for sale. The four were not carrying harmful chemicals. This incident was also a false alarm.

Mr Speaker, allow me to take this opportunity to sincerely commend and thank the people of Kalabo for the manner they have responded to reports of people suspected of carrying harmful chemicals. The neighborhood watch groups apprehended the suspects and handed them over to the Zambia Police Service, which instituted investigations. This is how it should be. Members of the public must not take the law into their own hands.


Mr Speaker, to maintain law and order in Kalabo District, the Zambia Police Service has been conducting foot and motorised patrols, including the use of boats. Currently, the situation in the district is calm and people are going about their normal business.


Mr Speaker, given the low number of police officers in Kalabo District, officers from the Zambia Correctional Service and the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Service (DNPW) are undertaking joint patrols with the Zambia Police Service in maintaining law and order. Other stakeholders are providing material support. In addition, the Community Service Directorate of the Zambia Police Service is setting up community crime prevention units in rural parts of the district. Furthermore, the Zambia Police Service is engaging traditional and civic leaders in conducting sensitisation programmes aimed at enhancing law and order in these areas.


I thank you, Sir.




Mr Speaker: Order!


Hon. Member for Mwembezhi, you are rather loud in your conversation.


Ms Mwape (Mkushi North): Mr Speaker, there is false information being given to the public in rural areas with a view to incite citizens, especially youths to cause public disorder. What charges are being given to people misinforming the public when no incidents of gassing have occurred?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, it is wrong and a crime to issue alarming statements. Alarming statements can create conditions in some individuals such as high blood pressure (BP). For example, the lady I had referred to in my answer ended up having BP. You never know what alarming statements may culminate into. Police officers may charge alarmists depending on the circumstances and the gravity of the false alarm after assessing the situation and the implication of such alarming statements.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, the police have made several trips out of the Boma into the villages. How much funding is the Government providing to the police command in the district to enable them move effectively and efficiently to combat the claimed falsehoods of gassing?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, those who know Kalabo will understand and appreciate that during the Rainy Season like this time, there are certain areas which are very difficult to access even by the Zambia Police Service. That is why I did mention that the Zambia Police Service is combining efforts with other law enforcement agencies and is using boats to access some areas. I may not have figures of how much money has been released to Kalabo specifically. However, I know that the provincial administration and the Provincial Joint Operations Committee (PJOC) are making every effort to support the officers on the ground to reach the areas of concern and respond to calls by the neighbourhood watch groups, which have also been formed to help.


Mr Speaker, I should have said this when responding to the hon. Member of Parliament for Mkushi North that as Hon. Members of Parliament, we also have the responsibility to reach out to our people. If the hon. Member spoke to the people in a local language through the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC), it would be easier to reach the people and it will be quicker than going directly to them. Therefore, my plea is that all of us in this House should take the responsibility to disseminate information to our people in a way that they may understand better. We need to make them aware that some falsehoods are just meant to scare them and disturb their livelihood.


I thank you, Sir.


Dr Musokotwane (Liuwa): Mr Speaker, because the police do not move sufficiently, they misinform the hon. Minister. People are sleeping outside their houses. That would be partially solved if there was police presence in many places outside the Boma but in the outlying areas.


Mr Speaker, a police station was constructed at Luola using the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) three or four years ago. However, there is no single police officer there who could have assisted to maintain law and order amidst this security situation. When is the Government going to deploy police officers to buildings that are ready and are just waiting for police officers to occupy them? The buildings have been ready for four years but they are empty, except bats living in them.


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, obviously, I know the hon. Member for Liuwa would like to take advantage of the question from the hon. Member of Parliament for Kalabo. Of course, I did acknowledge the low number of police offices in Kalabo, and that is the reason the police are being supplemented by the other institutions I alluded to. The hon. Member for Liuwa is very free to approach my ministry. That matter can be dealt with appropriately. Our offices are open and he can come and engage us so that we see how to operationalise those already built facilities that have no police officers.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Kabanda (Serenje): Mr Speaker, apart from people who have been killed as a result of instant mob justice, how many people have died of gassing? I hear of this gassing but how dangerous is this gassing?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I do appreciate the hon. Member’s question, but I would like to focus on Kalabo for now because during the course of the week, I will be coming to update the House on where we are and then, probably, deal with that matter. Nevertheless, I can safely tell the hon. Member of Parliament and the nation through the august House that we have not recorded any deaths, be it in Kalabo or anywhere else as a result of people being gassed.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Mwila (Chimwemwe): Mr Speaker, arising from the gassing fears in Kalabo, I think it is now very dangerous for people to carry ordinary chemicals such as fumigation chemicals. For the sake of the people of Kalabo, how would people distinguish an ordinary chemical from a gassing chemical? In short, what is the name of the chemical that is being used in these illegal gassing activities?


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I appreciate the follow up question by the hon. Member of Parliament for Chimwemwe. The only response I can give is that we all have a responsibility to help our people understand. Let me go back to the issue I was talking about of a lady who was pounced on because people thought she was carrying some stuff for gassing. You know how our ladies move. They move with a few bottles of either oil to apply on their hands in order to soften them and some spray in their handbags. Those should not be dangerous items for them to carry because we know that that is how it has been.


Sir, that is why I am saying that we should all get involved in sensitising our people that they should not be overcautious. Yes, it is important to be security conscious, but not to be overcautious such that people should start disturbing other citizens who are moving with substances which are not even harmful.


Mr Speaker, those who have gardens will obviously continue using chemicals to spray their plants. I am not a medical person for me to start telling people that when they see a certain type of bottle, then they should suspect that that bottle is for gassing purposes. I think we can do more by sensitising people on these issues. That is what is required. We just need to make people understand that not everybody who moves with bottles could be a suspect of gassing activities.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Mutelo (Mitete): Mr Speaker, the issue is on how the people in Kalabo, Lukulu, and Mitete be able to distinguish between the smell of an ordinary chemical from that of the gassing chemical because the issue of gassing is there. I am asking this question because I want the hon. Minister to clear the air since people are still sleeping outside their homes in Kalabo.


Mr Speaker: Hon. Members, I have noted that we are straying from the question. We are bringing in new elements, some of them requiring even scientific data. I think let us give the hon. Minister of Home Affairs, as already been assigned to him, an opportunity to explain these things in more detail and in a more deliberate fashion.


The question at hand is very specific. It is about people sleeping outside and the hon. Member for Kalabo Central wanted to confirm the hon. Minister’s awareness and if so, what measures are being taken to beef up security. You have drawn him into chemistry of these substances and you want exact scientific explanations from him now. Let us wait for him to come back in the course of the week. I am sure he will take into account all those issues, including his battery of technical experts who are following this discourse will come to his aid.


Mr Miyutu: Sir, in some communities, people have embarked on the formation of neighbourhood watch groups and I learnt that there is a charge of about K20 to get an identity card for being a member of a neighbourhood watch group. Looking at the situation, would the Government, if that K20 is there, not waive it off so that these committees can be established without paying that K20 per individual member of the group? The burden is becoming too heavy for me.


Mr Kampyongo: Mr Speaker, I appreciate the hon. Member of Parliament’s follow up question and concerns raised therein. My response will be simply that I will engage the division command to find out exactly what is obtaining on the ground. The community crime prevention unit initiative is a voluntary service, which people come up within their own communities as a way of supplementing the work of the Zambia Police Service. This is usually done in those areas where it might not be easy for the police to be accessible on a daily basis. So, I will find out from the division command on what is obtaining on the ground and then I can engage the hon. Member of Parliament on how best this issue can be dealt with, so that he can give proper information to our people in the area.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Dr Imakando (Mongu Central): Mr Speaker, from the experience the hon. Minister has gathered so far, are these people who are gassing others all over the place, I believe it is countrywide as the President indicated in his speech. Can the hon. Minister confirm whether their objectives are the same in rural areas such as Kalabo and in cities such as Lusaka.


Mr Speaker: This is another question which is taking him away from Kalabo.




235. Mr Mulunda (Siavonga) asked the Minister of Tourism and Arts:


  1. whether the Government is aware that there is a stray lion that is killing domestic animals and terrorising the residents of Namoomba and Chalokwa areas in Nanyanga Ward in Siavonga Parliamentary Constituency;
  2. if so, what measures are being taken to address the problem; and
  3. how many animals had been killed by the lion as of Wednesday, 4th March, 2020.


The Minister of Tourism and Arts (Mr Chitotela):  Mr Speaker, the Government is aware of the problematic lions in Nanyanga Ward in Siavonga Constituency. The two lions are reported to have crossed the Zambezi River from Zimbabwe into Zambia.


Mr Speaker, wildlife police officers from Chirundu and Siavonga have been deployed to the area to ensure the safety of people and their domestic animals. One of the two lions was killed on 3rd March, 2020 and officers are still on the ground tracking the second one.


Sir, I would also like to urge members of the public to report matters of human/animal conflict to the nearest wildlife police office to ensure quick action and appropriate assistance to the conflict by the officers.


Mr Speaker, furthermore, I would also want to urge the people in the affected areas to be extra cautious, especially during the early hours of the morning and evenings. This is because lions are particularly active during this time. As at Wednesday, 4th March, 2020, confirmed reports indicated that sixteen animals have been killed and these include fourteen goats, one calf and one zebra.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Mulunda: Mr Speaker, every year during the rainy season in Chalokwa and Namoomba, animals cross from the Zimbabwean side into Zambia terrorising people and killing domestic animals. As a long term measure, would the hon. Minister consider setting up a camp for wildlife officers?


Mr Chitotela: Mr Speaker, it is a possibility that we can pursue by looking at our financial status and seeing if we can do it.  It is possible to set up the camp office there for our wildlife police officers.


I thank you, Sir.


Ms Mwape: Mr Speaker, the hon. Minister has indicated that the stray lions that are killing domestic animals and terrorising people in Siavonga escaped from a national park in Zimbabwe. Has the hon. Minister had any interaction with his Zimbabwean counterparts, so that they work together to stop these animals from crossing into Zambia?

Mr Chitotela: Mr Speaker, maybe I should explain to the hon. Member of Parliament for Mkushi North that there is free movement of animals at the lower part of the Zambezi River between the national parks in Zambia and those in Zimbabwe. During the dry period, we usually experience a large migration of buffaloes between Zambia and Zimbabwe. So, we are just adjacent to each other and it is difficult to tell if these animals are from Zambia or Zimbabwe. However, they can go to Zimbabwe and come back to the national parks in Zambia and then return back to the national parks in Zimbabwe. So, when they are in Zambia, we take full responsibility and the same is the case on the Zimbabwean side.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Livune: Mr Speaker, the operation in Siavonga as regards this lion …


Prof. Luo: On a point of order, Mr Speaker.


Mr Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Prof. Luo: Mr Speaker, thank you, I just want to emphasise, as you know, that I rarely rise on points of order, but this one is very compelling because it borders on maligning people’s names and defamation of character. I am raising this point of order on the hon. Member of Parliament for Sesheke.


Sir, before I state my point of order, I want to say that I have spent all these years building my name professionally and politically and I take great exception for any Member of Parliament in this House to start maligning my name.


Mr Speaker, I was watching a television clip on Prime TV, and the hon. Member of Parliament for Sesheke made the following comment that: “When the Head of State spoke on tribalism, he failed to mention the name of Prof. Luo”. Prime TV was being watched by many people. Is the hon. Member of Parliament for Sesheke in order to malign my name without any evidence of tribalism? Is that the reason why the UPND brought a Private Member’s Motion to this House to try and cleanse their name? Is he in order? I seek your serious ruling Mr Speaker, if Members of Parliament are going to be maligning other people’s names.


Hon. UPND Members: Question!


Mr Speaker: I reserve my ruling.


Mr Livune: Mr Speaker, before Prof. Luo rose on a point of order, I was trying to ask the hon. Minister of Tourism and Arts the operation that is in Siavonga as regards this lion. Is it an operation to destroy or capture and reintroduce the lion into a national park?


Mr Chitotela: Mr Speaker, there are procedures that we follow before we reach the conclusion of shooting down an animal. We try to control and rehabilitate the animal, but if it becomes wild and uncontrollable, that is when it is gunned down and harvested specifically for trophy. We do not throw away the animal if it is killed.


 So, in the first operation in Siavonga, the staff tried to control the animal but failed. So, we decided to gun it down and preserve it for trophy purposes. The remaining one is still being monitored to see its activity. If it cannot be controlled, the decision to gun down will be arrived at.


 I thank you, Sir.




237. Mr Miyutu asked the Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry:


  1. whether the Government is taking any measures to empower entrepreneurs in rural areas, countrywide;
  2. if so, what programmes are being implemented to empower the entrepreneurs; and
  3. what entrepreneurship programmes need to be implemented in the Western Province.


The Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry (Mr Yaluma): Mr Speaker, the Government through the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) is contributing towards the empowerment of rural entrepreneurs in the country. To-date, 90 per cent share of CEEC empowerment projects are allocated to rural areas countrywide and 10 per cent to urban areas. These projects are drawn from the agricultural, forestry and mining sectors, among others.


Cashew Matching Grant


Mr Speaker, the Cashew Matching Grant in partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture, the Cashew Infrastructure Development Project (CIDP) and the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) is implementing a US$2 million cashew matching grant fund facility in the Western Province to support innovative and viable private sector women and youth empowerment initiatives along the cashew value chain. A total of 123 projects are being funded.  Of these, twenty-one projects are for processing and logistics and 102 projects are for production. The target districts include Mongu, Limulunga, Senanga, Kalabo, Nalolo, Sikongo, Shang’ombo, Sioma, Lukulu and Mitete districts of the Western Province.


Aquaculture Seed Fund


Sir, the Government, through the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock, with support from the African Development Bank (AfDB), is implementing the Zambia Aquaculture Enterprise Development Project (ZAEDP) whose objective is to contribute to economic growth as well as provide food and nutritional security in Zambia. The project development objective is to advance the aquaculture subsector as a viable and inclusive business opportunity through enhanced production and productivity in order to improve the livelihoods of beneficiaries along the aquaculture value chain. A K351 million aquaculture seed fund is being implemented in thirty-five targeted districts around the country.

The Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Project


Sir, the project seeks to improve livelihood opportunities of Zambian entrepreneurs especially in rural areas and will benefit particularly women and youth through enabling infrastructure and entrepreneurship for Micro, Small, Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) businesses development. Through the CEEC, the Government is implementing the skills development and entrepreneurship project thus supporting women and youths in Zambia. The project aims to facilitate the construction of eight industrial yards and provide support to the cassava value chain development in Mansa, Kasama, Solwezi, Ndola, Kitwe, Mongu, Kafue and Chipata. To date, the construction of Mongu, Solwezi, Kasama and Chipata industrial yards have been completed. The Mansa and Kafue industrial yards will be completed by 31st December, 2020. In addition, it may be noted that the ministry, through the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA), the CEEC and the Zambia Bureau of Standard (ZABS) provide business development services including the following: 


  1. entrepreneurship development trainings;
  2. product development and quality trainings;
  3. export readiness training for targeted markets such as Angola;
  4. access to markets programmes such as joint programmes on cross border trade with neighbouring countries such as Angola and Namibia including cross border business missions.


Mr Speaker, the ministry, with its statutory bodies, also periodically hosts business clinics. A business clinic is planned on the sidelines of exposition in the Western Province scheduled for August 2020.


Mr Speaker, the entrepreneurship programmes that need to be implemented in the Western Province are the operationalisation of the industrial yards in Mongu and implementation of the Aquaculture Seed Fund.


Mr Speaker, I thank you.


Mr A. C. Mumba (Kantanshi): Mr Speaker, I think that some of the development programmes and finances that have been prepared under this ministry will turn the Western Province around from being the second in terms of poverty. Is the hon. Minister satisfied with the current economic activities or programmes for entrepreneurs? If so, is the hon. Minister able to give some statistical information regarding reduction of poverty levels as a result of the interventions he mentioned?


Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, firstly, I would like to say that the performance has not been very good. I know exactly what has been the biggest problem. For the past two or three years, the entrepreneurs we intended to fund were not reached due to lack of adequate funding to the ministry. The last funding received by the ministry was in 2017 and it was only about 15 per cent. In 2018 and 2019, the ministry was not funded adequately so that we could assess the performance of our initiatives and see whether there is poverty reduction in those areas. I talked about nutritional or food security. That is the main purpose of our programmes. That will enable people in those rural areas to be empowered. They could generate their own wealth within their local economies. As we continue funding them, they can grow beyond the starting point.


Mr Speaker, to answer the hon. Member, I would say I am not equally happy with what is happening, but there is nothing I can do at the moment. When the ministry gets further funding, we can measure the performance of the programmes and bring the information here.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Ng’onga (Kaputa): Mr Speaker, I followed the hon. Minister’s answer on empowerment of entrepreneurs especially youths with regard the funds under the CEEC. What message does the hon. Minister have for those who have already been trained and are waiting for funding for their businesses to take off? It is now probably one and half years from the time they were trained.


Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, I would say ‘Please, hang in there’. We will manage to have the funding regularised so that we can cater for all applicants whose applications were approved three years ago but have still not been funded. We have not discarded their applications. If need be, we will escalate the process so that we bring the budget up to speed.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mrs Chinyama (Kafue): Mr Speaker, maybe my question is a variation to the previous question. Given the funding situation that the hon. Minister has just described, what is the guarantee or what gives him the confidence that the ministry will accomplish these things including the completion of setting up that industrial yard in Kafue by December this year as he indicated?


Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, as regards to the industrial yards, I said that five have been completed and that the industrial yard in Kafue is outstanding and will be completed in December. The funding is available. It is just scheduling that has been moved around. Funds are there. There has not been any cost overrun. Schedule overruns have been there, but the budget is still intact to complete that industrial yard as stipulated.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Mr Ng’ambi (Chifubu): Mr Speaker, I commend the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry for investing heavily in the Western Province towards poverty reduction. I would like to know how much has been invested in training the successful applicants.


Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, I did highlight in my response that one of the things we are doing to ensure that this will be a sustainable project is training people through the CEEC and the ZDA. There are programmes we are running to ensure that we up the skills of the people in these initiatives. One of them is the running of business clinics which will start by the end of this month or next month to bring the people to a level where they can sustain their projects. We are training them, and part of the training is funded by the co-operating partners. They tailor the training to suit the needs of particular projects, for example, aquaculture, or cassava commercialisation projects so that the people can sustain their projects.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Mulusa (Solwezi Central): Mr Speaker, I would like to acknowledge the industrial area in Solwezi. I know that the hon. Minister is taking a lot of time to complete the industrial areas for young men. How much money is the ministry spending in rural areas countrywide per year?


Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, that question is incomplete. The hon. Member would like to find out how much money has been spent on what. Is it on overall expenditure pertaining to entrepreneurship? There are categories and so he must be specific. However, I will give him a figure. Regarding industrial development, we spent US$31 million. I did highlight other figures as well like the US$2 million which is about K27 million and US$37 million which I said was equivalent to K351 million. These amounts are categorised per sector and entrepreneurs and projects they are looking at. We classify them separately, and the funding comes from different sources. If he told me the total, I would come with the figure and give him that.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Miyutu: Mr Speaker, if I got the hon. Minister correct, he talked about the promotion of cassava. How is the ministry going about the promotion of cassava growing and connected value chains in the Western Province? Which districts are targeted for promotion of cassava?


Mr Yaluma: Mr Speaker, cassava commercialisation has come up in an effort to add value to cassava. Previously, cassava was used just for cassava mealie to make nshima and other things. Cassava commercialisation looks at other industries which need cassava for other reasons such as the making of beer by Zambian Breweries Plc. Moreover, even other incoming breweries are emphasising on partnering with out grower schemes in Mansa, Kasama Mongu and any other place where they can grow cassava for making beer. Cassava is in the spotlight to support the clear beer industry.


I thank you, Sir.



238.  Mr Simbao (Senga Hill) asked the Minister of Housing and Infrastructure Development:


  1. when the tarring of Chimula-Mpande Road in Senga Hill Parliamentary Constituency will commence;
  2. who the contractor for the project is;
  3. what has caused the delay in commencing the project; and
  4. what the time frame for the completion of the project is.


The Minister of Housing and Infrastructure Development (Mr Mwale): Mr Speaker, the upgrading to bituminous standard of Chimula/Mpande Road in Senga Hill Parliamentary Constituency will commence once the financing agreement has been finalised, if it will be finalised.


Sir, the contractor for the works is China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation Zambia Limited. The delay to commence the project is as a result of the financing agreement not being concluded. The time frame for the completion of the works should be twenty-four months from the date of commencement, if the project will commence.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Simbao: Mr Speaker, what caught my ear was the reference to ‘if the financing arrangement will be concluded’. I would like to know exactly what the hon. Minister means by that.


Mr Mwale: Mr Speaker, this project should have been funded as a contractor-financed arrangement. As we know, most of these projects that are contractor-financed are tantamount to obtaining loans are on hold at the moment since the Ministry of Finance is not contracting anymore loans.


 I thank you, Sir.


Mr A. C. Mumba: Mr Speaker, my main interest is centered on whether a feasibility study was conducted on the possible construction of road. If so, who provided the finances for the feasibility study?


Mr Mwale: Mr Speaker, I am aware a feasibility study was done, but as to who funded it, I need to check since it is a new question and I did not anticipate it.


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Simbao: Mr Speaker, having got the clarification from the hon. Minister, I would like to let him know that this road passes through the central business district (CBD) of Senga Hill and leads to one of the most important areas regarding farming at this moment. What should I go and tell Chief Mpande and the people of Senga Hill who live are around this road?


Mr Mwale: Mr Speaker, indeed, this road is important and we cannot underestimate its importance. However, the message to carry back to the chief and the people is that at the moment, the Ministry of Finance has deferred the implementation of some projects, especially the ones that the Ministry of Finance has to borrow to implement them since it not borrowing anymore. This is because they want to balance their books very well before borrowing. We are deferring the implementation of this project under this arrangement. The message to take back to the people is that the Government will only implement this project if it finds its own money because it will not borrow money for this project. 


I thank you, Sir.


Mr Ng’ambi:  Mr Speaker, the people of Senga Hill are very anxious to know the estimated cost of the construction of this road, especially that the hon. Minister has indicated on the Floor of the House that the parties involved are only finalising the financing arrangement, which means that the estimated costs are there. Is he able to share with the people of Senga Hill that information?


Mr Mwale: Mr Speaker, at the time the contract was signed in July, 2016, the estimated cost was about K798 million. Obviously, there could be some variations now that three years have passed.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.


Ms Mwape: Mr Speaker, this road is very important for the people of Senga Hill. Further, the people have been waiting for it to be tarred. In the interim, is the ministry not considering using the Zambia National Service (ZNS) to grade the road so that it can become passable?


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mwale: Mr Speaker, we have to assess whether the road is passable or not. I suppose the issue to make this road to bituminous standard was raised and this is what we are working on, but it is not really that the road was not passable. However, if indeed the road is not passable, we could make some arrangements to make it motorable.


I thank you, Mr Speaker.







Ms Miti (Vubwi): Mr Speaker, let me begin by thanking you for according me this rare honour –


Mr Speaker: Order!


Hon. Member for Vubwi, move your Motion.


Ms Miti: Mr Speaker, I am sorry.


Sir, I beg to move a Motion of Thanks on His Excellency the President’s Address on the progress made in the application of national values and principles, delivered during the Fourth Session of the Twelfth National Assembly on Friday, 6th March, 2020.


Mr Speaker: Is the Motion seconded.


Mr Kalobo (Wusakile): Mr Speaker, I beg to second the Motion. 


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Ms Miti: Mr Speaker, let me begin by thanking you for according me this rare honour and privilege of moving the Motion of Thanks to the speech by His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, on the occasion of his address on the progress made in the application of national values and principles delivered on Friday, 6th March, 2020.


Sir, allow me from the outset to congratulate His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, on his speech to this august House. The speech was excellent…


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Ms Miti: I will repeat.


Dr Malama: Correct!


Ms Miti: The speech was excellently delivered and articulated essential aspects in our country that require the intervention of all well-meaning citizens of this great nation, Zambia. His Excellency the President raised a number of pertinent issues in his speech. Allow me to highlight some of those issues.


Morality and Ethics


Sir, His Excellency the President in his speech alluded to the fact that morality and ethics are about what people consider to be socially acceptable and desirable. He pointed out that morality and ethics include hospitality, generosity, respect for elders, the environment, human life and property.


To this effect, I would like to strongly agree with His Excellency the President by expressing my displeasure with the inhuman gas attacks on our innocent people that have resulted in the death of over fifty people due to mob attacks on suspected gas attackers. As a woman and a mother, it really pains me to learn that these activities are planned, co-ordinated and seemingly sponsored with the aim of inducing fear and disturbing peace among our citizens, including innocent school going children.


Mr Speaker, it is regretted to note that in some cases, some leaders whom we look to for guidance have either directly or indirectly been fueling mob justice on the suspected gassers leading to people being burnt alive and in some instances destruction of public properties. I, therefore, would like to commend His Excellency the President for the timely interventions he has put in place in order to help curb his ugly and unexplained gassing of our innocent citizens. It is because of his Government’s timely intervention that we have witnessed the drastic reduction in the cases of gassing and mob justice.


Mr Speaker, another issue that caught my attention in His Excellency the President’s speech to this august House was his concern on child marriage and teenage pregnancy in the country. As a mother, I would like to strongly agree with His Excellency the President that it is morally unacceptable to force young girls into early marriages.


Sir, let me applaud His Excellency the President and the Patriotic Front (PF) Government for the numerous efforts that they have put in place to ensure that this scourge is curbed.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Ms Miti: His Excellency the President, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, in his capacity as a champion on early child marriage in Africa and a firm advocate of the protection of rights of the girl child, has continued to provide leadership by seeking ways to end child marriage and teen pregnancy in the country.


Mr Speaker, His Excellency the President should be commended for several initiatives he has put in place including the initiative of working with traditional leaders in the country. It is through such initiatives by His Excellency the President that Zambia won a gold award for innovative management at the 2019 African Association of Public Administration and Management Round Table Conference in Egypt. I would like, therefore, to encourage all hon. Colleagues in this august House to join hands with His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, in challenging the discriminatory laws and negative social norms under which the vice of early child marriage is being practiced.


Mr Speaker, as the House is aware, child marriages represent multiple violations of children’s rights as they expose girls to Gender Based Violence (GBV), teenage pregnancies and risk of contracting sexual transmitted infections, including Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (HIV/AIDS). It is disheartening to note that incidences of child marriage and teen pregnancy have continued to occur in our communities despite being prohibited in our laws and in numerous human right instruments such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and United Nations (UN) Convection on the Rights of the Child.


It is, therefore, our responsibility as leaders to ensure that social norms which have been perpetuating these harmful practices in our communities are condemned and abolished in order to ensure the safety of our girl children.


Human Dignity, Social Justice, Equality and Non-Discrimination


Mr Speaker, let me emphasise that His Excellency the President of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, is an ardent believer and promoter of human rights. He has consistently reminded all of us that every human being has an inherent right to life and human dignity. In this regarded, it is incumbent upon us that we treat everyone with love and respect, regardless of their social class, tribe, race, gender, nationality or religion.


Sir, I would, therefore, like to support the President in condemning all those who are in the habit of purporting negative sentiments based on narrow sectarian interest. It is a well known fact that when our forefathers fought for political independence, they did so for the unity of this great country. It was their dream that all Zambians would live in peace and unity.


The signing of the historical Choma Declaration of 1973 by two great sons of this country, Dr Kenneth David Kunda and Mr Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula, signalled the bringing together of over seventy-three ethnic groupings of this country. However, it is very unfortunate that individuals, especially politicians, have of late been promoting hate speech and tribal remarks among our people, actions that may erode the achievements that have been recorded in uniting this nation.


Mr Speaker, let me take this opportunity to remind my hon. Colleagues and the nation at large that hate speech and tribal remarks made to fellow citizens are not only illegal under the Constitution of Zambia, but clearly go against our declaration of Zambia as a Christian nation and indeed our ‘One Zambia One Nation’ motto. I, therefore, urge everyone to adhere to the President’s call to immediately stop this negative and divisive trend. All politicians, please stop it.


Mr Speaker, in the same vein, allow me to echo the President’s sentiments on the escalation of political violence, especially during elections. Zambia has always been known to be a haven of peace. We should all endeavour to heed the President’s call for political players to practice politics of tolerance towards one another. Let us all refrain from subscribing to politics of intolerance and intimidation, irrespective of where it is coming from. I would like, therefore, to commend the President on his directive to all law enforcement agencies to deal sternly with this matter, regardless of whom the perpetrators are or their standing in society.


Good Governance and Integrity


Mr Speaker, I cannot agree less with the President on the continued promotion and participation of our people in decision making. The President and his PF Government continue to promote good governance by ensuring citizen’s participation, accountability and transparency in the running of the affairs of the country.


Mr Speaker, may I take this opportunity to commend the President for ensuring that there is continued integrity in our electoral process. Zambia has an impeccable record of holding free, fair and credible elections.


Mr Michelo: Question!


Ms Miti: Zambia has an impeccable record of holding free, fair and credible elections ...


Hon. UPND Members: Question!


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Ms Miti: ... which have resulted in peaceful transfers of power? It is no wonder that our electoral process has been held as one of the best electoral systems on the continent.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Michelo: Question!


Ms Miti: Mr Speaker, in order to continue achieving this mark, I would like to agree with his Excellency the President on the need for all Zambians eligible to vote to be accorded an opportunity to exercise their democratic right. I urge all my hon. Colleagues to ensure that people in their constituencies obtain National Registration Cards (NRCs) and thus get registered as voters during the voter registration exercise to be conducted by the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) later this year.


Further, may I applaud the President for inviting the international community to observe the management and holding of the 2021 general elections. The invitation is a testimony to all various stakeholders, local and international, that the PF Government respects the people’s right to vote, as it continues to strengthen the country’s democracy.


Mr Speaker, in conclusion, allow me to urge my fellow hon. Members to take a lead in the application of national values and principles as expressed by His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu. We as leaders should always endeavour to lead by example and ensure that there is genuineness in all aspects of our life.


Mr Speaker, I beg to move.

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


Mr Kalobo: Now, Sir.


Mr Speaker, I thank you for the honour and rare privilege to second the Motion of Thanks on the speech delivered to this august House by His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, on 6th March, 2020. Allow me also to thank the hon. Member of Parliament for Vubwi for ably moving the Motion.


Mr Speaker, first and foremost, I would like to congratulate and thank His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, for delivering a timely and inspirational address.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Kalobo: Mr Speaker, the national values and principles that we set ourselves as the people enshrined in the Republican Constitution should be adhered to by everyone.


Mr Speaker, allow me to re-echo the President’s and mover’s condemnation of individuals who have gone against our values and principles causing untold physical and psychological harm on our people through gassing and mob justice, where we have seen more than fifty people lose their lives. This mob justice has also seen most of our people living in fear and panic.


Mr Speaker, I commend the President for a non-selective application of the law in trying to ensure that the perpetrators of gassing and mob justice are brought to book. The spirits of the people of Wusakile and Zambia at large were lifted when they heard from the President that there will be no sacred cow and no sacrificial lamb in the administration of justice. These are the words that we expect to hear from the father of the nation. The President told this House that criminality has got no colour, race, political, and tribal tags. These were the words from the President.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Kalobo: Mr Speaker, the President went further to call upon every Zambian to support the law enforcement agencies as they work to ensure that law and order is maintained.


Mr Speaker, let me comment on morality and ethics. Alcohol and substance abuse do not only destabilise society but also affects productivity negatively. According to a World Health Organisation (WHO) report, more than 3 million people lost their lives as a result of alcohol and substance abuse. In the same year, 2016, more than 1 million people lost their lives through HIV/AIDS. Going by the numbers, we can deduce that alcohol and substance abuse is more dangerous than Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (HIV/AIDS). I, therefore, commend the Government for its continued efforts in sensitising the people about substance and alcohol abuse. However, more control measures need to be put in place if this vice is to be addressed. Implementation of the Liquor Licensing Act Chapter 167 of the Laws of Zambia should also be enhanced


Sir, citizen involvement in businesses that deprive the country is also a moral issue. For example, citizen involvement in the sale of public assets for personal gain is a moral issue which should not be encouraged in this country.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Kalobo: Social justice, human dignity, equity and non-discrimination call for everyone to respect every human being. There should be non-discrimination in the way people access empowerment and opportunities. To this end, I commend the Government for ensuring that marginalised groups in society are taken care of through the Social Cash Transfer Programme.


Hon. Opposition Members: Question!


Mr Kalobo: Mr Speaker, the President gave us statistics of the beneficiaries of the Social Cash Transfer Programme. He told us that more than 574,000 people benefitted in 2018 and in 2019, more than 632,000 people benefitted. This is a step in the right direction. The Government is creating opportunities for our people to access basic needs, and this is what we want. The Government is trying to create a balance without discriminating. Further, there is a need to increase the budgetary allocation so that beneficiaries of the Social Cash Transfer Programme increase. There is also need for the private sector to complement the Government programmes such as the Social Cash Transfer.


Sir, in the same light, I commend the Government for sustaining the home-grown programme for school feeding. The President also gave us statistics on this. He told this House that more than 1.1 million learners are being fed everyday in 3,004 schools in thirty-nine selected districts. This is a commendable initiative that is ensuring that school going children coming from families where they cannot afford meals are encouraged to go to school. Undoubtedly, this is improving learning outcomes for students. The Government is helping families in rural areas by ensuring that school going children are fed. This programme also helps small scale farmers by buying their products, which is a win-win situation.


Mr Speaker, the minimum wage is a policy intervention to address poverty for workers is also commendable. We saw the Government adjust the minimum wage upwards in 2012 and 2018. Social justice should also be understood in the way wealth, privileges and other necessities are accessed. The purpose of having a minimum wage is to create a wage floor below which it is illegal to pay.  We have so many workers who still do not access the minimum wage. The Government should employ more labour inspectors to ensure that all people in employment can access this good gesture from the Government.


Mr Speaker, let me comment on democracy and good governance. One of the yardsticks of democracy is elections. I agree with the mover of the Motion that we as a country have held several elections and there has been smooth transfer of power. This is what our country is known for. ‘Wamuyayaya’ attitude was buried in the 1990s when we embraced the multi-party system.


Hon. Opposition Members: Meaning?


Mr Speaker: Hon. Member, please translate that word.


Mr Kalobo: In this context, the word refers to those leaders who want to stay in positions forever.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear! Third term!


Mr Chabi: Those who have lost many times!


Mr Speaker: You may continue, hon. Member.


Mr Kalobo: Mr Speaker, it is very disheartening because we seem to be going backwards instead of building on these democratic gains that we have attained as a country.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Kalobo: We can only address such a problem by having regular conventions in political parties.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Kalobo: Sir, we cannot have democracy without democrats. Charity begins at home. It was permissible under the one-party state for one individual to stand against a frog in an election, but not this time. We cannot have somebody who wants to be a leader continuously for fifteen years. It is not acceptable. National values and principles do not agree with this.


Hon. Government Members: Volume!


Mr Kalobo: Sir, under the same, let me also talk about television (TV) which is a very important voice for the people and the Government. TV is an important link because it is through TV that the public comes to know about the Government’s priorities, programmes and policies. Similarly, the Government can keep itself well-informed about the grievances, expectations and opinions of the people through the same TV. The press can also be a good instrument to address social, cultural and attitudinal changes in society. The power and influence of the media –


Mr Speaker: Order!


Business was suspended from 1640 hours until 1700 hours.




Mr Kalobo: Madam Speaker, before business was suspended, I was trying to stress the point that the press can also be instrumental in bringing out the desired social, cultural and attitudinal changes in society. The power and influence of the media is unlimited.


Madam Speaker, I would like to send a message to managers running television stations that where their freedom ends is where their responsibility begins. Ninety-nine per cent of the reports by some television stations are negative. Does it mean that there are no good things to report in Zambia? What moral issues are the young people going to learn from such television stations? The message from the President is that every citizen should be involved in inculcating good values and principles.


Madam Speaker, I would like to urge politicians as they debate and feature on radio programmes to realise that, where their freedom of expression ends is where their responsibility begins. A lot of hate speech has been heard. Politicians are the ones who are in forefront of all negative vices with regard to national values and principles. What leadership are we as politicians trying to show the young ones? What nurturing tactics are we trying to bring? On 6th March, 2020, the President told this House that we owe it to the future generation to inculcate national values and principles. As leaders, what legacy are we going to leave regarding the application of national values and principles? If we as leaders cannot answer that question, posterity will judge us harshly.


Madam Speaker, as I conclude, I would like to bring to the attention of everyone here and every citizen in Zambia that the President’s Speech was an acknowledgment by the President and his Government that there is degradation in terms of national values and principles. People will start debating in reverse when things are very straightforward.




Mr Kalobo: The President and his Government acknowledged that there is degradation in terms of national values and principles, and that is why this speech was given. Such a speech cannot just be delivered if the Government does not acknowledge that there is a problem in the application of national values and principles. I encourage implementation and monitoring in the application of national values and principles because as a country, we will not know or determine whether we are progressing or retrogressing. Implementation of national values and principles is therefore important, and everyone should identify themselves with the set national values and principles.


Madam Speaker, again, I would like to mention that anyone calling himself or herself a leader must know that where his or her freedom ends, that is where his or her responsibility begins.




Mr Kalobo: Hon. Members must accept responsibility.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Hon. Member, I am sure you mean to say “Where our rights end”. Further, please face me as you speak. Debate through the Chair.


Mr Kalobo: Madam Speaker, where our freedom end is where our responsibility begins.


Madam Speaker, with these few words, I thank you.


Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!

Mr Nkombo (Mazabuka Central): Madam Speaker, let me begin by joining the President in rendering his utmost sorrow and condolences to the families of the people who lost their lives as a result of the disquiet that characterised our country in the last four to six weeks.


Madam Speaker, having joined the President in tendering my sincere condolences, I would like to declare that the activity of last Friday was a constitutional mandate that the President needed to come as dictated by the Constitution and give us the progress on ethics, values and principles of the nation.


Madam Speaker, the issue that he spent time on from pages 1 to 5 relating to the attacks that were launched, he called it the launch pad, was in Chingola that culminated into what one may call psychological warfare, where people somewhat systematically and also spontaneously destabilised our society by first indicating that there were ritual murders. That escalated to gassing and later on pronouncements. I would like to congratulate the President for a balanced speech on this particular matter. I think he was very balanced on this particular matter, sounding a very hard warning to the criminals who seized this country.


Madam Speaker, having started so, I have my own doubts if the President actually has control over his kith and kin within the Patriotic Front (PF), to be specific, the politicians.  I agree with him that it is us politicians who escalate these problems by issuing reckless unsubstantiated statements. I want to say this for fear of any contradiction that this seizure looks as though it was a well-calculated thing that ended up in one event and that was death by one way or another. The President indicated that mob justice claimed fifty lives. Some of the lives were of adolescents or young people.


Madam Speaker, the President also, in a lukewarm manner, indicated that the police had shot a couple of people. I think that we must interrogate this particular issue of mob psychology and mob justice. I expected the President to actually say that it could also be indicative of the fact that citizens have lost confidence in the Zambia Police. His action to remedy this by bringing in the army and all the security forces was confirmation to some of us that yes, indeed, the police were lacking. We have said this before and we shall continue saying it again. Do not ignore the fact that the police could be part and parcel of the escalation of these issues. There was a social conflict between the police and the society.


Madam Speaker, when you see a society coming to tell the police to say, “Give us the suspect, give him or her to us” it resonates with what happened when Pontius Pilate was told, “Bring that person here, we want to deal with him ourselves”. He washed his hands. I am saying this with all fairness without reference to the person holding the ministry that oversees the police because at this point in time, we all have to join hands to make sure that we resolve this problem. The politicians should take a fair share of blame for reckless statements, sometimes, which were reverberated and repeatedly said by even the police. When the ideas ran out, it now became an issue of finger pointing.  


Madam Speaker, we heard from the second highest office of the land a statement that said it is people who are advocating for regime change who are responsible for this. We heard that. We heard from the kith and kin of the President indicating that they know who these people are and that they have known that scheme for five years. Where is the ministry responsible for the police? When somebody is holding information that is subversive, they must be called to the police to help the police to substantiate what they are saying. It is a quick way of getting down to the root of the problem.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkombo: It is an express way to get to the root of the problem. There should be no hanky-panky where lives of people are concerned. Madam Speaker, I also want to –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!


Withdraw the word ‘hanky-panky’.


Mr Nkombo: Madam Speaker, I withdraw the word ‘hanky-panky’. There should be no fooling around with people’s lives. There should not be. When we look back, lives have been lost, and yet somebody can joyfully sit and say, “Nalibeshiba ine”, meaning I know them, I have known this matter for five years. How can this person say that and then no one calls this person who knows to the police to help investigate? Something is definitely wrong.


Madam Speaker, I think that we should all accept that when the Government is wrong, it is dangerous to be right. In this particular case, I am not issuing any blame to anyone, but I think all of us here must do introspection and understand that never ever again should we go into this issue that we came out of, if we have, in the future. The President spent up to seven pages talking about this gassing and then I asked myself the core of the subject of the address was to tell us about his own view or the Government view of the report on the improvement of values, ethics and principles. What if there was no gassing? This report is by and large just anchored on this gassing, threats, and the commission of inquiry.


Madam Speaker, I put it to you that if this Government was serious, it should have gone to the basics and say, “We need a commission of inquiry that will anchor on a truth and reconciliation commission”. This society is cleave. There is a cleavage and it is broken. Whether one likes it or not, it is broken because of mistrust. Those are the issues that surround morality and dignity.


Madam Speaker, the President left me confused because once all these things were going on, society was aggressive, apprehensive, confused and everybody became a suspect to a level where a person who ordinarily was very well-known such as a former Permanent Secretary (PS) of the big greater city of Lusaka and former town clerk, could not be recognised by citizens and were killed in cold blood because there is a demon that is going around the country. There are people who are in police cells who have been arrested. Why advocate for a commission of inquiry when they have suspects? They should take them to court and prove them guilty or innocent. They will find the answers there. What commission of inquiry are they talking about? With which money is it going to be formed? Is it just fashionable now that when the President is stuck on solutions, he must say, “commission of inquiry”?


Dr Malama: Question!


Ms Lubezhi: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkombo: Is it now fashionable that when there are no answers, the Government should talk of having a commission of inquiry? We know where this story is coming from.


Madam Speaker, the President spoke about voting and the issue of a fair playing field. I am sure those who have done psychology have heard the term ‘cognitive dissonance’. The term ‘cognitive dissonance’ is a description of a person who has got a conflict in his own mind that what he believes in is not what he is doing.


Mr Mutale: Question!


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkombo: We just came out of Chilubi Island and it is naked truth that our party, together with our other colleagues, was shunted out of that place, and yet the President sat here and said we must prepare a level playing field for everyone. Cognitive dissonance is where you say things that you do not believe in. Don’t kubeba is a translation of cognitive dissonance.


Ms Lubezhi: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkombo: We have to be honest about what we are doing as a people. We have no choice but to be compelled to be honest with what we are doing. This should have been the address of the President and not just a Kuomboka Ceremony which comes every year, no. It should have carried a meaningful texture. It should have carried some visible changes in attitudes of people.


Madam Speaker, the President spoke about tribalism and he never made one mention, not that I am campaigning for it. I moved a Motion here and you heard one hon. Minister saying that the United Party for National Development (UPND) brought the Motion. It is not the UPND. It was me. I have this to say in telling the truth because I always tell the truth.


Madam if the President is listening; Sir, I had challenges to bring that Motion in this House. It took me fifteen days and I had no opinion but to say that the institution of Parliament was conniving with the Executive not to have that Motion see the light of day here.


Madam, until I told the administration of this institution that if you want to –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!


Take your seat, hon. Member.


Mr Kampyongo: On a point of order, Madam.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, thank you so much for allowing me to raise this very important procedural point of order. I have been sitting here quietly trying to follow the substance of the hon. Member’s debate.


Madam Speaker, I am happy, like I did say during his Motion, that he who comes into equity must come with clean hands. The only reason I accepted to be the first to support that Motion was because of the hon. Member’s magnanimity. If he was still sitting as the Whip of the Opposition –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Hon. Minister, what is the point of order?


Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, I would not have supported that Motion because it would have been hypocritical.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: The point of order!


Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, is the hon. Member in order to insinuate that the Executive on your right hand side led by Her Honour the Vice-President, the Leader of Government Business, connived or colluded with the Legislature, where we all belong? 


Madam Speaker, you know that we do not draw ourselves into acrimonious debates. As a senior hon. Member of this august House, is he in order to insinuate that there could have been some attempts to block his Motion and to take that route? We were geared and overwhelmingly supported that Motion.


 Madam, I seek your serious ruling because this institution risks being destroyed by its own hon. Members, which should not be the case. We all have a responsibility to protect the integrity of this arm of the Government. I seek your serious ruling, Madam Speaker.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Hon. Members, certainly, that point of order gives me an opportunity to guide the House and the guidance is that this is your House. The management of the National Assembly is your management. If there are any issues that hon. Members are dissatisfied about, they can be handled away from the House, but through the office of the Clerk. 


It is certainly not expected that you as hon. Members can cast aspersions on your own management, members of staff and of course in the absence of evidence to substantiate that allegation, the hon. Member for Mazabuka Central is out of order. He is, indeed, out of order to allege that there was connivance between the management and the Executive.  That is my ruling and the hon. Member is guided to continue his debate bearing that counsel in mind.


Mr Nkombo: Madam Speaker, thank you so much and I always treasure your counsel. To avoid any doubt, I said that it is my suspicion. However, I take your advice. I do not allege anything, it was my suspicion and I have some evidence. 


Madam, the President spoke about tribalism. Again, this is an act of cognitive dissonance. Tribal remarks have been churned out by hon. Members of this House on the right hand side in the most recent times. I have information and I am aware they were chided by the President. I know that for a fact and it was a good thing for the President to chide, admonish and reprimand these individuals who are showing trades of tribalism.


Madam, they however need to lead by example, President Jomo Kenyatta. Madam, do you know what he used to do? When you go to the Kenyan Parliament, you see the statue of Jomo Kenyatta with a shambok, icikoti. When a minister of Government contravenes, he would whip them in public as a show of displeasure. When a minister of Government takes a route of tribalism, it is in conflict with the Constitution and you will see very soon that in public they will be appearing in court because now we are not playing games.


Anybody who discriminates another based on ethnic extraction, race or religion will be seen at the Magistrates Complex. We will be taking them one by one. This is a way to inoculate people who have got this inborn abhorrent idea of thinking that some ethnical grouping is better than others.


Now, on 28th June, 2015, President Lungu was campaigning in Malambo for my brother-in-law. As a matter of fact, Hon. Jack Shuma is not here now. He is gone and was replaced by Hon. Zulu. This is what President Lungu had to say and I have it:


Wako ni wako. Wamuvumo yako niwako, Lungu tells Malambo as he is drumming support for Jacob Shuma.”


Madam First Deputy Speaker: What is the source of that statement you have just referred to?


Mr Nkombo: I am an experienced man and I will lay it on the Table when I am done.


 Madam, with your indulgence, let me just conclude my work. I will lay the authentic document on the Table and then you can rule me out of order, if you so wish.




Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order on both sides of the House!


 Hon. Member, the practise is that you state the source and then you can refer to what was said, after which you can lay the document on the Table of the House. 


Mr Nkombo: Madam Speaker, this particular statement is from tumfweko.com.




Hon. Government Members: Question!


Ms Lubezhi: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkombo: It is here. You asked me to say and I will read what tufweko.com is saying. It is an online media platform. After that, I will come and deal with the issue that was in the News Diggers. Maybe you have just done well for me to read what News Diggers said on the issue of tribalism. The date is 3rd June, 2019 and it reads as follows:


“The Patriotic Front (PF) Media Director Sunday Chanda says the tribal remarks made by three senior members of the Ruling Party were made in their personal capacity and did not represent the PF’s position.”


Well done, Mr Chanda.


He went on to say:


“Three party officials, Prof. Nkandu Luo, Bizwell Mutale and Chanda Nyela, issued tribal remarks against Tongas over the last few days during the ongoing constituency parliamentary by-election in Chilubi, sparking outrage in the opposition camps.”


Madam Speaker, I will lay this on the Table. This is what I am talking about. I am told reliably, whether it was in the living room of State House or wherever, the President admonished these individuals quietly. What value does it bring to the society if the President cannot say, “You are wrong. Do not repeat it?” You do not lose anything. What is wrong with issuing a public apology than coming here to make a point of order on a young hon. Member and bring me in the debate because it is me –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!


Hon. Member for Mazabuka Central, that statement will not be allowed in this House. You shall not bring an hon. Member of the House into your debate in that manner. Proceed.


Mr Nkombo: Madam Speaker, I withdraw the word.


Madam, in English, they say “the guilty are afraid”. If I were to find myself in a position of recklessly making a statement, I think that being a big boy entails that I must stand before a pedestal and say “I am sorry, forgive me. I slipped. This will not happen again.” That is what normal people do. You cannot hold on to something that is wrong. I moved that Motion here and I heard hon. Members of this House, some of them ex-convicts, jailbirds, sorry, not convicts, who were accused of stealing cars and were fished from Chimbokaila …


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!


Mr Nkombo: Coming to say …


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!


Mr Nkombo: … come to say that I should have come to apologise.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!




Madam First Deputy Speaker: Hon. Members, to the best of my knowledge, we have no record of a convict in this House. More importantly, hon. Members, the President came to the House to do his part, which was to deliver a speech. The people out there expect us to use this speech to help the President to manage the affairs of the State so as to benefit them. Now, as hon. Members, if we allow this debate to degenerate, we will lose the opportunity to support the President and the Executive in ensuring that they manage the affairs of the State to the benefit of all of us. This is an opportunity. We can debate and criticise in a manner that does not erode the dignity of both the Office of the President and this House. We can criticise, but with the dignity that is expected of us. Hon. Member for Mazabuka Central, you will heed my counsel, I am sure.


You may proceed with your debate.


Mr Nkombo: Madam Speaker, I always treasure your counsel.


Madam, you know that the President spoke about equity, social justice, dignity and non-discrimination. I am sure you and everyone, even a five year old child, knows that one opposition party leader, who is the leader of my party, was slotted into a dog kennel to move him from the court to jail at the time when he was accused of a frivolous charge of treason. What social justice did the President talk about even if you want me to praise him?


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkombo: They say do unto others as you wish them to do unto you.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkombo: Madam, there is no glossing over issues here. What we discuss here should be the mirror images of what society should be. I agree with you Madam Speaker that we need to be cordial to one another. We need to respect one another, but respect does not mean that we must sweep the dirt under the carpet. Ah pepe! No. It is Simple. We should not sweep the dirt under the carpet.


Madam, as I come to the end of my debate, I think the President missed it. I would have supported him 100 per cent if he came and said that we need a truth and reconciliation commission which would be headed by the church, and that we have hurt each other for far too long. Let us try again. Let us try afresh. If you want to know, he did a good thing. All his gesticulations were fine. We had a great time. We laughed. He came here to the side of the Opposition and I said to him, “Boss, Sir, you are never available to talk. We are running this country together.” I told him here. People wondered what Nkombo discussed with the President. I asked him straight questions. I said, “Sir, you are not available. Give me your mobile phone number so that we can actualise the things you were talking about.”


Mr Kampyongo: Question!


Mr Nkombo: The closest we can see President Lungu is my mother, Her Honour the Vice-President because the people on the right shield him. He will only know the truth once he is out of the office. He will know that he needed us more than we needed him and that we needed to help him govern.


Madam Speaker, as you said, we are not enemies, we are just competitors. That is what we are.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkombo: Whoever said there is anything wrong to sit down and discuss. It will go down in history that we tried to talk, it just failed. I asked him, “Ba boss, why mutaba discussion? Why can we not talk?”


Mr Kampyongo: Ba boss!


Mr Nkombo: Yes, he is a boss. I have no qualms about it. He is the President, unless you want to challenge me to go back into original mode when I did no recognise him?


Mr Kampyongo: Question!


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Nkombo: He is the President and he has a few more years to go. On the issue of governance, we have all become like lawyers. Some of us know that he is not even eligible to stand in the next elections.




Hon. Government Members: Question!


Mr Nkombo: We know. I have a challenge for the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) to see who in the ECZ will receive his nomination papers. This is part of the governance story.


Madam Speaker, I thank you. 




Mr Nkombo laid the documents on the Table.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Ng’onga (Kaputa): Madam Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity you have given to the people of Kaputa to support the address given by His Excellency, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, President of the Republic of Zambia, on the Progress Made in the Application of National Values and Principles delivered to the Fourth Session of the Twelfth National Assembly on Friday, 6th March, 2020.

Madam Speaker, allow me to indicate to you that I will definitely not take the line of debate that I have seen from other speakers. I will level headedly look at what the President tried to achieve when he delivered his speech to this House and the nation. One of the issues that the President talked about is an issue that is affecting all of us in the nation, which is gassing and the mob justice that has taken place in the recent past and continues to be reported in some places in the nation. We are calling it mob justice, but I think it should be called mob injustice because there is no justice I have seen from people who mobilised themselves to demand for suspects and kill them instantly.


Madam, this is un-Zambian and it will always be un-Zambian. I have never seen Zambia like this. Some of us are getting into the sixties and have never heard from those we found that Zambians rose against themselves. Zambia has always been a peaceful country with peaceful people. From the north to the south and the east to the west, we find the same people. What has happened and continues to happen is definitely un-Zambian and we must condemn it. The President did not mince his words. He condemned the recent acts of violence.


Madam Speaker, the President went further and indicated that those criminals who feel that they can hide in one way or the other will be found by the State. That is very good. The President was very categorical that the State and the law will find them. It does not matter whether they are Zambians or they are from outside the country. I can see that what has taken place was definitely systematically planned. These incidents happened simultaneously in the country in places like Zambezi, Lundazi, Nakonde, Livingstone, and Mkushi. This has never happened in Zambia. I am in order to indicate that these acts of gassing took a lot of planning and involved sophisticated people. I got solace from the President because he said that he is still in charge and the State machinery will bring these people to book. At that point, we will know and see who the people behind the gassing incidents are.


Madam Speaker, I thank the President for not having pointed fingers at anybody. It was reported on social media that a certain political party could be involved. I thank the President because he has been calm on this important issue and did not mention any name. All he did was tell us that he trusts the State machinery to find the culprits. I look forward to those entrusted with the responsibility of bringing the perpetrators to book to doing their job diligently and quickly. If there are Zambians who are involved in these criminal activities and brought people’s lives to an end, these culprits or criminals must be known and made to answer for what they have done.


Madam, it was very important and very good for the President to have indicated his thoughts on this matter and to have given us peace and solace by saying that we have suffered gassing attacks in the past few months, but they are coming to an end. Yes, gassing has come to an end, although we still have some reports of it, especially in rural parts of the country. I hope that the people who are entrusted with the responsibility of bringing the culprits to book will continue to pursue this issue. They need support from all of us so that they can bring back peace so that Zambians can continue to work the same way they have been working without worrying about where they will be and where they will sleep.


Madam Speaker, the other issue that His Excellency, the President, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, talked about in the speech was electoral violence. Looking at the previous debates we have had, both at the opening of Parliament and when the President came to give us progress on the application of the national values, electoral violence always comes in the debates. Hon. Colleagues, as leaders of this country, there is no winner in electoral violence, whether you like it or not. At the time that we engage in elections, we want to win by any means. We have lost lives; our brothers have been maimed for the sake of getting positions. That is not worth it.


Madam, the President did indicate that politicians are at the centre of electoral violence. We should stop it. It is not worth it. It is not worth our leadership and it is not worth us governing this country. Electoral violence does not please anybody. Looking at the number of politicians who vie for positions in this country, it is probably not even a third of the total population. The ECZ is talking about registering up to 9 million people for the 2021 general election. The projection is that over 18 million Zambians will register, but only a third will go and vote and that is about 3 million to 4 million people. It is not worth it.


Madam Speaker, there are many people in Zambia who want to continue with their lives. Let politicians manage this country on behalf of the entire nation. Politicians should not take the people for granted. Electoral violence has no space and place in Zambia. If we were all to bite the bullet, we could stop the violence because it is not worth it. To kill a life, maim your son or brother because you want to come to Parliament or State House, it is not worth it. The earlier we start condemning this violence without blaming the President, the better. I know that even amongst us in this House, there are people who want to champion electoral violence. We can have elections that are peaceful.


Madam Speaker, when Hon. Lungwangwa and I were in South Africa for the Pan-African Parliament (PAP), we witnessed an election in South Africa. On the day that people were voting, we saw voters wearing their party regalia going to vote. The regalia were sold from booths on queues as people were going to vote. Hon. Lungwangwa can attest to that. That is how peaceful elections can be. What more would you want? People wearing red, green, blue party regalia would queue and go and vote for whoever they vote for. It is possible to have that sort of environment and value enshrined in us if we decided to do it that way. At the end of the day, elections are like football games. When Nkana Football Club plays Mighty Mufulira Wanderers Football Club, there is tension, but after they have played, everyone is happy whether they have lost or won because they are one. We can also do that with our elections. Why do we want to fight? The President was very clear when he spoke on our values that we are peaceful Zambians and that it is possible to have elections without killing one another or stopping one another from voting. Let us compete on what we can do for our people and not because we are intimidated and have killed somebody. 


Madam Speaker, let me talk about tribalism and hate speech which is topical and important at the moment. Hon. Colleagues, leaders, and the entire nation, tribalism and hate speech have no place in Zambia. There are no homes, clans or families where you will not find intermarriages. All of us here have a mixed culture, including our children, nieces or grandchildren. Sometimes, we even mislead our children when we bring in tribe, your son, daughter or grand niece may not even know their tribe. What do you consider me to be if my father is from the East and my mother is from the West and my grandmother came from the North? What do you consider these children to be when you start talking about tribalism? Tribalism should have no place in this country. Let us be united under the ‘One Zambia One Nation’ motto which was left to us by our great leader, Dr Kenneth Kaunda, who was the first President of Zambia. It was very uniting and had good value. Let us continue to build on this.


Madam, there are many neighbouring countries that admire the way we have lived and kept one another as Zambians. Maybe you do not know that. Where is this devil that wants to confuse us coming from such that we now start looking at which tribe people come from? What we need in Zambia is a Zambian President. We do not need a president who comes from one grouping. A Zambian President should be elected by everybody because he is a Zambian and not because he has brothers and sisters taking him forward. That will not work. Our children and grandchildren are fed up with the sort of politics that we have continued to play. They are looking up to us to change this scenario and embrace the values that the President talked about. Hate speech, tribalism and the irresponsible use of social media is bad. I do not know where this tendency to pick news from social media without thinking twice has come from. Any news picked from social media becomes the absolute truth. I know that social media has contributed to destroying us. We do not even verify or authenticate the news that we are getting. You will find that even leaders take news from social media as the absolute truth. That is not good and it has continued to destroy us. Please, let us get the information that is required and pass it on to people. They look up to us as national leaders and whatever we say is taken as the truth. If we pick some information that was peddled on social media and is false and bring it to Parliament, we destroy not only ourselves but the entire nation.


Madam Speaker, on a light note, let me look at the issue that I liked the most. His Excellency, the President paid tribute and thanked our scientists. On page 24, paragraph 60, His Excellency said:


“I also salute our crop scientists ...” –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Hon. Minister of Transport and Communication, maybe you should go back to your seat. Go back to your seat, hon. Minister. You may proceed, hon. Member for Kaputa.


Mr Ng’onga: Madam Speaker, I would like to thank you. However, I was looking on page 24 of the address by His Excellency the President, paragraph 60, where His Excellency the President said:


“I also salute our crop scientists who are dedicating their time to give us climate resilient seed varieties. This is contributing towards household and national food security. Being patriotic means preserving our environment against the threat and impact of climate change. I call upon every Zambian to join me in a patriotic crusade of planting trees as well as engaging in clean and smart energy generation such as solar as opposed to cutting trees and charcoal burning.”


Madam Speaker, I also totally agree with His Excellency the President that our scientists, not only in the field of medicine, but also in the field of agriculture have done very well and they are doing exceedingly well. Therefore, we need to salute them because this is a value we must cherish.


Madam, as we speak, Zambia can now boast of having a maize variety that can mature in ninety days. If we did not have enough rains to last us six months and if all the agronomical practices were correctly carried out, we should be able to have food on our tables using the seed varieties which can mature in ninety days. So, this is very encouraging because even His Excellency the President is able to recognise the efforts of the current crop scientists and we would only urge them to do even better.


Madam, sometimes we have a short rain fall period in the Southern Province, the Western Province, and some parts of the Central Province, especially the southern parts. Therefore, the varieties and materials which are available now should be able to give us food security and make this country food secure.


Madam Speaker, as I conclude, allow me to indicate that climate change is here to stay. The President has alluded to it and its effect during his speech on the Official Opening of Parliament in September, 2019. This is how much importance he attaches to climate change and the efforts that the Government is doing in order to give us the progress being made in ensuring that this Government answers and appraises itself to the effects of climate change. The examples that have been given could also indicate that the Zambia Forest and Forestry Industry Corporation Limited (ZAFFICO), one of our own Zambian companies, has done tremendously very well in trying to plant trees in Kawambwa, Kasama, Nakonde and also in the Western Province, where they are promoting cashew nut growing not only for climate change, but also to ensure that the values that are derived from the trees would actually benefit the country.


Madam Speaker, there are many more values His Excellency the President spoke to, but these are the ones I addressed myself to.


 Madam, I thank you for the opportunity.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mbulakulima (Milenge): Madam Speaker, my first point of call is to thank you for allowing me to debate on this important Motion.


 Madam, let me repeat what I said last year when I debated on the same Motion that one of the best ideas to ever come from our collective wisdom and resolve as a country is this. I wish we could embrace this as a country. When I say this, I mean the same principles and values.


Madam, the President said the values and principles influence our attitude, behaviour and conduct as a people. They also contribute to the conscious of the nation and provide a moral campus in the formulation of policy and running of Government, business and one’s personal life. The importance of these national values and principles cannot, therefore, be overemphasised. How I wish we could embrace this as a country. This is not about His Excellency the President or an individual, but about all of us because we agree that the way things are today is not the way the things were twenty, thirty or forty years ago. Therefore, we cannot blame His Excellency the President today who is just about two years in office. No one can blame this party which is about seven years old in Government.

Hon. UPND Members: Question!


 Mr Mbulakulima: You cannot. It is that question which we have to examine. Unless we get down to the bottom of the issue, we shall continue missing the point. The idea which is molded by all of us as Zambians is critical.


Madam Speaker, you know, this was the fourth time His Excellency the President came to address the House. All of us who have been here for four years and above agree that the context of the address was richer and there is no doubt about it. When we look at His Excellency the President, he is not about self praise, tuchawa, meaning trying to be good. The man was assertive because he knew what he was doing. Let us give credit where it is due.


 Hon. Government Member: Hear, hear!


 Mr Mbulakulima: Madam Speaker, I will tell my hon. Colleagues how impressed I was yesterday when I saw the Opposition taking part in the International Women’s Day. That is a good move and part of good governance because even when they take over Government tomorrow, they will have the moral obligation to appeal to the people to attend national functions. That is how it is supposed to be. These are the values we need to inculcate in ourselves and the children, their children and the children of our children. That way, we shall make Zambia a better place to live in.


For instance, if they want to criticise everything like one leader who has distorted – While  for us PAC means the Public Accounts Committee, but today, they call it  People’s Alliance Congress, but this is a man who says the creation of funds for the coronavirus is misplaced. Come on! How can you say that as a leader? He describes the creation of the coronavirus fund in terms of preparedness as misplacement because he hates the party and the Government. How can you call such a person as a leader? We should fight that and we should not allow it. Let us live as civilised people and give credit where it is due.


 Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!

 Mr Mbulakulima: Madam Speaker, my debate will gravitate on three principles; corruption, tribalism and ubuntu or humanity, just those three.


Madam Speaker, corruption is endemic. Therefore, we should not tolerate it. We should always ask ourselves how come this keeps on going, going and going. When the people in Government tell them to justify, point out or report, they say “no, it is not fair”. This thing will continue unless we put our minds on it.


Madam, if my hon. colleagues would recall, during the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) Government and one of the major reasons the MMD was voted out of power was a misconception of corruption. Today, the same thing has come such that people believe that there is too much corruption. You see, it is misplaced. In football, we say “eyes on the ball”. The eyes on corruption have been on the politicians, which I believe is misplaced. So, unless we shift the focus, we will not address this problem.


For instance, if you look at hon. Members of Parliament, what kind of access do they have to the national resources that they can call them plunderers? It is limited or nothing at all. Probably 2 or 3 per cent of hon. Members of the Cabinet could be corrupt, but the biggest problem is with the Government ministries, departments and somewhere else. Now, it has even gone into the private sector. 


Madam, those who are advocating for a corruption free nation, especially those outside there, should examine this and get to the bottom of the issue such as the ministries, departments and the private sector. Nowadays, when one parks or when people do certain things to someone, they would want you to pay them. Who is supplying goods and services to the ministries? Who is doing this and that? It is not the politicians for God’s sake. Yes, 2 per cent could be there and we must condemn that and ensure that it stops, but how come that all our efforts and eyes are just on the politician? As long as we keep our eyes on a politician, we are missing the point and we shall change Government after Government and believe you me, the corruption will continue going up.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mbulakulima: Madam Speaker, I want someone to tell me who has been a great guy from Mbala to Siavonga or from Zambezi to Chipata in the last three, ten or twenty years because they were hon. Members of Parliament or hon. Ministers. No one! Do not tell me that all of them are just careless putting up faces. When one is in office, yes, they will say hon. Members, but immediately one goes out, there is nothing because there is nothing.


Therefore, fellow compatriots, let us change the direction of this corruption that we talk about. We are the ones who are running the affairs in our districts and provinces. Money from the Ministry of Finance goes to the Ministry of Health, Ministry of General Education and Ministry of Agriculture. Who is responsible up to the end user? There are also other issues like Government tenders, authorisation and many other things. Where does a politician come in? Why are we wasting so much time focusing on the wrong people? Until we change the approach, this vice will continue because it is misplaced.


Madam Speaker, on the issue of tribalism, fellow compatriots, it is at different levels. It is at a personal level, community and national levels. Unless we take a self introspection of where we are, we will not deal with tribalism. In 1978, when I crossed the Luapula coming into Lusaka at Form 3 level, I was staying in Northmead. Those who know Northmead area know that the junction of Sibweni and Benakale Roads overlooks Rhodes Park. My best friend I found in Lusaka was from Chikankata. When I went to Evelyn Hone College in 1983, my best friend came from Gwembe. Today, my best friends come from Monze, Hon. Nakacinda, and Hon. Malanji from the North-Western Province. 


Madam Speaker, when I see how people are behaving today, even when you go to the Members Motel, you will see them moving with their tribesmen. When they are taking a beverage, they are with their tribesmen. When they are taking tea, it is either with their party officials or tribesmen. We are not going to fight tribalism with this kind of behaviour.


Madam Speaker, how I wish the Chief Whip and other Whips could change the sitting arrangements and dismantle it. We are cheating ourselves and wasting our time. We are not going to fight tribalism until we change the approach at a personal level. We cannot move like this. If you go to the Members Motel, who do you move with? It is the people from your fellow tribes and your party and then you condemn and say tribalism is bad. What are we doing on a personal level? You always move two or three of you from the same area. Come on, this will not help us. Let us demonstrate even as we take tea in the restaurant. You will see at 1810 hours, as we are on tea break, how we are going to sit. Why?


Madam Speaker, let us condemn tribalism at a personal level, community and national levels. Fellow compatriots, one thing that is promoting tribalism in this country is the feeling by people that, for example, people from the northern part of Zambia have had enough. Let us change that. Unless we change and re-examine that notion and aspect where people believe –


Madam, I sometimes get surprised that somebody who has been to the university and college and has completed Grade 12 can still believe that there is a tribe in this country that has monopolised governance of this country. This notion must move out of our heads. You know what is going to happen, tukaiponona, we are going to fight and fight and when we look back, we will realise that there was no need to have done that.


Madam Speaker, let me give this example. We are soon going to celebrate fifty-six years of independence. We have elections every five years and if we were changing presidents every five years, we were going to have eleven presidents by now. If we had eleven presidents and one tribe had about six or seven or eight and you tell me that it was too much, I was going to agree. However, if you look at the scenario today, we only have the sixth President and they are from different directions of this country.


Madam Speaker, if you look at Dr Kaunda as the first President, he came in as a northerner and went out as an easterner. However, if there is one person that we have agreed that he did not have a tribe is Dr Kaunda. If there is one person that we believe was above the tribe and has been accepted as a Zambian without any tribal inclination it is Dr Kaunda. So, as we look at these Presidents, remove the man.


Madam Speaker, one day when I was seated and somebody was debating about all the resources going to Muchinga Province, I pulled him and he told me that I was not a Bemba, but from Luapula Province because it suited him.


Madam Speaker, I am talking about tribalism. The only person from the northern part of Zambia who ruled for ten years was Dr Chiluba. The next one was Mr Michael Chilufya Sata, who ruled for three years and put together that is thirteen years. Fellow compatriots, why do you want to destroy the country by thirteen years of governance by this? What is too much that you believe is too much? Thirteen years out of fifty-six years and you carry it in your heart every day, bitter.


Madam Speaker, this is common among us who are aged forty-five years and above, not those who are twenty or thirty years old. They do not know it. I am aware that an old man is always uneasy when dry bones are mentioned in a proverb. So, for us who are forty-five years and above we are very sensitive when the name Bemba is mentioned. You are always jumping asking what it is. Come on, stop this. You cannot continue like this. There is no too much. Let us have a level playing field and the best person should win. It is this tribalism thing that people believe is too much. What is too much? As you go to bed tonight, go and examine it. You want to destroy this country because of thirteen years out of fifty-six years and you call it too much. What is too much? No, I do not like that. It must come to an end. Go and examine it. We cannot continue like this. President Lungu came yesterday and we think he is the one promoting tribalism? It cannot be. Let us give credit where it is due.


Madam Speaker, the President said the following on page 49:


“I recall that each time I paid a visit to my village as a young man then, I was always reminded that the worth of a person was not in the number of chickens, goats or cattle one owned, but rather the good name one carried. By that, they meant the values and principles that one lived by and were an example to others. 


I also treasure the experiences and lessons I learnt from my extended family on the importance of respect and family. This provided a sense of belonging and security because as a child I was safe even when my biological parents were not there.”


Madam Speaker, I look back with nostalgia how good it was those days when one went to the village. For us who come from the northern part of Zambia, it was the Copperbelt. When we went to the village, the elderly people could tell why you have gone to the village. Either you are sick, they could tell and how united we were in the village. Today, you cannot send a child to go and thatch the grandmother’s house. If he does, the grandmother has to pay.


Madam Speaker, we used to say when a brother calls his kinsmen for a meal, it is not because they cannot afford it. It was ubuntu. When a brother called a brother under the moonlight, it is not that he could not see the moon the other side. It was ubuntu. We shared everything, but today we are so divided. If anything, here in the urban areas we are even better off. In the villages, we have lost it completely. So, we need to encourage these values and principles that we are talking about. We have lost it and we cannot apportion the blame. We need to start afresh. I think what we need to promote are these principles and values.


So, dear compatriots, I believe that this is a non-partisan issue. We all have to participate and promote principles and values and Zambia will be a better place to live in.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.   


Mr Muchima (Ikeleng’i): Madam Speaker, I will start with the gassing of citizens in this country. The President’s Speech delved on this issue in depth –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!


Business was suspended from 1810 hours until 1830 hours.




Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, before business was suspended, I began my debate with the issue of gassing which the President belaboured in his speech.


Madam, this act of gassing should be condemned by every reasonable Zambian. It was gratifying to hear Her Honour the Vice-President the other day saying we should go together outside politics and look at this issue. These are the words which were supposed to have come when this vice began in Chingola. Even the President talking about this vice has come too late after so many lives have been lost and so much suspicion cast on each other.


Madam Speaker, we need to be careful when we are looking at the lives of citizens. The gassing began in Chingola and also manifested in Ikeleng’i where I was. It was so sad that it reached the rural areas. People were not sleeping because they wanted to catch the person behind this. It is interesting. I do not know what kind of communication those behind the gassing were using, how they got such a chemical and how they were targeting certain individuals. It has been a rough time, and we should all condemn this vice. It should not be looked at as something that is happening to people here and there. 


Madam Speaker, the police should summon and interrogate those who said they had information about this issue. That is the starting point. I remember that when there was a treason case, one person came up and said they were aware and just because of that, they were arrested and taken to prison in Mukobeko. I wonder why the Government has spared the people who openly declared that they know the people behind this gassing. The Government should start with such people.


Madam, the President’s Address dealt with many issues such as corruption, tribalism, governance, patriotism and a lot more. I will speak on some of these topics. If the Zambian football team losses an international match, it is normally the coaches and not the players who are fired. It is the Patriotic Front (PF) that is providing leadership in this country. Therefore, fingers should be pointed at the PF for whatever is going wrong in this country. I must confess that this is a humble report, but it has come much too late. This was supposed to be a song from the word go, by the PF.


Madam, the issue of tribalism has been prominent during the rule of the PF.


Hon. Government Members: Question!


Mr Muchima: We have seen Lozis, Lundas and Luvales being fired ...


Mr Kampyongo: Where?


Mr Muchima: ... from their Government jobs. That is the beginning of problems. We have seen segregation in the treatment of citizens and the PF supporters treated as special people. I was in Sesheke and saw what happened there. Tell me the people who were fired from the police. That is why I said that when the –


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


Madam First Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Mr Ngulube: Madam Speaker, thank you for allowing me to rise on this very important point of order.


Madam, I am aware that the Motion on the Floor is very specific. When the President appeared before us last week, he made a very clear statement. He never talked about Sesheke or the things that the hon. Member for Ikeleng’i is trying to bring into the President’s Speech. I am also aware that the people out there are learning from the insinuations that hon. Members of Parliament are trying to make on the Floor of this House.


Madam Speaker, is the hon. Member for Ikeleng’i in order to try and bring up tribalism onthe Floor of this House when he knows that under the Patriotic Front (PF), no person can be fired as a result of their tribe? Is he in order not to adduce evidence that he has to that effect? I need your serious ruling as to whether this man who is trying to introduce tribalism on the Floor of the House is in order or not.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Hon. Members, that point of order gives me another opportunity to guide. We are the fortunate ones in this country to have been given an opportunity to govern collectively. On a Motion like this one, what we say as hon. Members goes a long way in shaping our society. The words used must be measured so that we do not reverse the gains or worsen the situation. Of course, tribalism is a very sensitive issue, but it is expected that as leaders, we be magnanimous and collectively take responsibility and agree to do something about the situation. So, hon. Member for Ikeleng’i, take my counsel into account as well as that point of order.


You may proceed with your debate.


Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I oblige. In my debate, I was referring to page 8, where the President referred to tribalism and hate speech and said that it has no place in Zambia. The President even urged politicians to stop tribalism. That is what my debate is anchored on. It is not from outside the speech. I even referred to a football match. All these things are happening because of the leadership that is tolerating it.


Madam Speaker, what is being seen today is real. It is not difficult to tell the sex of a dog when it is moving. Whatever is happening in Zambia is completely bare. The President talked about self introspection. Today, people are regretting and referring to the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) because it was fair in the distribution of whatever it was doing, unlike what is being seen today. 


Madam Speaker, the President referred to Article 8 of the Constitution of Zambia and read among other issues, morality, ethics, patriotism, national unity, democracy and constitutionalism, human dignity, and equity. Indeed, the First Republic under President Kaunda observed these values. Today, that is not being done. Today is one year before the general election. That is why I am saying this report looks humble. The PF has been arrogant. It has not been observing Article 8 of the Constitution of Zambia. As I debate, I am referring to Article 8, and I know why I am saying so. The values and principles that influence our attitudes are amiss and are completely absent in today’s governance.


Madam Speaker, the issue of tribalism was fought by the United National Independence Party (UNIP). That is why the One Zambia One Nation motto was most pronounced during that time. What are we hearing and seeing now? Tribalism is not coming from the left but from the right. The rotten egg is somewhere on the right, and that is why I am saying there should be leadership. The Government has to lead by example. 


Madam Speaker, as things stand, the issue of governance is critical. I expected this report to include issues of where the country currently stands in terms of development in each province and what the country is going through. This is March, and the next appearance of the President to this House is in September. The House wanted to hear about bridges, roofs that have been blown off and the inadequacies in financing which the country is experiencing. I expected to hear about what is happening with the country’s co-operating partners. Why have they abandoned the country at this hour? Those are issues that should have been addressed in this speech. Whatever the President brought said were appeals because I know that next year is an election year.


Madam Speaker, let me now come to the real issues that the President talked about when he referred to equity and the rule of law. It is well-known that the architects of violence during campaigns are from the PF. Those who have taken over markets and bus stops are from the PF. Wherever there is a by-election and there is violence, know that it is engineered by the PF.


Mr Ng’onga: Question!


Mr Chikote: Hammer!


Mr Chilangwa: On a point of order, Madam.


Mr Muchima: They attack whoever they want to attack and nothing can happen if they are reported to the police. You will never –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Mr Chilangwa: I rise on a very serious point order. Is that misguided hon. Member of Parliament misguiding himself on the Floor of the House and to the rest of the country in order to insinuate that the Patriotic Front (PF) is the instigator of violence?


Madam Speaker, facts are there on the table. It is known that there is no violence which occurs in the PF strongholds.


Hon. UPND Members: Ah!


Mr Chilangwa: There was the Chilubi and Bahati parliamentary by-election and the Milenge local Government by-election in PF strongholds but there was no violence whatsoever.


Hon. UPND Members: Ah!


Mr Chilangwa: However, in strongholds for hon. Members on the left such as Sesheke, Kaoma and the rest, there was violence, including the Mapatizya formula. Is this former Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) member in order at that age to come to this House and mislead himself and the rest of the country in that fashion?


Madam Speaker, I need your serious ruling on this issue.


Mr Ngulube: He is expired MMD!


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order! Hon. Deputy Chief whip.

The hon. Minister for Luapula has adequately debated that point of order. Hon. Member for Ikeleng’i, you may continue with your debate.


Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I thank you.


Madam, I am referring to page 25 of the President’s Speech under democracy and constitutionalism. In paragraph 62, the President said:


“Democracy allows everyone to freely and fairly participate in the governance of the country without any form of coercion, intimidation or discrimination. This goes hand in hand with constitutionalism, which is about upholding the rule of law by both government and the governed.”


Madam Speaker, the elections that are conducted in Zambia are never based on what the President said. That is what I am referring to. There was a by-election in Samuteba in Mwinilunga. I saw people coming with guns clad in camouflage attire attacking the United Party for National Development (UPND) camps. They had labelled mealie meal which is supposed to be with the Ministry of Community Development and Social Welfare. The mealie meal was confiscated and taken to the police but no arrests were made.


Madam Speaker, the other day, people were given a chance to debate issues affecting the country at Intercontinental Hotel. A mob stormed the hotel and disrupted the meeting. Some hon. Members said they had footage to that effect, but to date, no arrests have been made. That is what I am referring to as I debate. I demand that the Ministry of Home Affairs follows up that issue and arrests people who disrupted the meeting at Intercontinental Hotel. The rule of law needs to prevail in this country.


Mr Kampyongo: On a point of order, Madam Speaker.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.

Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, I thank you for allowing me to rise on this very important point of order. You have been guiding through and through and you are pressing it on us that we should be responsible enough when we stand to debate in this august House. I have got so much respect for the hon. Member on the Floor, but is he in order to stand there and say that he has got evidence of footage of some violence which took place at some place? Is he in order to only make mention here when he knows where he should have taken that evidence in order for the appropriate action to be taken so that the arrest can be done? Is he in order to just come here and try to incite the members of the public that the police cannot act when they have got evidence? Knowing the hon. Member’s background, I am very concerned because –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Ask your point of order, hon. Minister.


Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, is the hon. Member of Parliament whose background is anchored on the security history of the nation in order to conceal evidence which he could have taken to the police? If those who are in the footage are people from his party, then we can understand. If they belong to the Patriotic Front (PF) –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Hon. Minister, are you done with your point of order?


Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, I want you to rule so that that evidence he has –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: If you debate the point of order, I will not rule. Make your point of order.


Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, is the hon. Member of Parliament with his background in order to keep that evidence …


Mr Muchima: Your elder brother!




Mr Kampyongo: … which he should have taken to the police? I seek your serious ruling, Madam Speaker.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: My serious ruling is that if, indeed, the hon. Member for Ikeleng’i has evidence of some wrongdoing somewhere, he is encouraged to report the same to the police and he will take that point of order into account as he debates.


Hon. Member for Ikeleng’i, continue.


Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, in this Parliament, we have to be factual. I said that one of the hon. Members of Parliament who was present there, who was being interviewed, said that he has footage. I did not say that I have that footage myself.


Hon. UPND Members: Tutwa!


Mr Muchima: It is a very well-known matter and it was on television when one of the members of the PF said that he had footage on his phone. We have to stand on points of order on facts.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Proceed with your debate.


Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, I thank you for your guidance. The President talked about value for money. When you look at these contracts which the PF has been awarding, who have been the beneficiaries? You will find that they are cadres. That is why even the performances of these contracts have failed because the majority of the people have no idea on how to go about it. We have not as a country earned any value because of the cadre-ism that has been promoted by that party there on your right.


In this country, foreign contractors stand a better chance in terms of payments than local contractors. All those local contractors who have been working struggle to be paid. You will find that if they are paid, most of the money is not used on the contracts. That is why we have shoddy works in this country.


Madam Speaker, the President talked about the girl child. He emphasised on the issue of early marriages. I expected the President to provide us with a solution not mere sensitisation. There are factors that lead to early marriages. The first one is poor infrastructure and non-exposure. I can give an example of what happens where I come from. In Ikeleng’i, there is no television and radio. The only entertainment the young girls and boys find is loving each other.




Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, they are not as exposed as their colleagues here in town. As we are talking, some bridges have been washed away and children cannot even go to school. What next? The next thing is to go and entertain themselves with boyfriends and girlfriends. Some of them walk kilometres to go and access school. This makes it impossible for them to go to school. The Government has neglected the poor people. I hear people say that this is a pro-poor Government, but I think it is totally not. It is contrary to that. If it was a pro-poor Government, today as we are speaking, their presence in rural areas could have been felt.


Madam Speaker, all the projects that were started a long time ago in eight years, today none of them have been completed. In Ikeleng’i, there are no teachers. In some schools, they only have one or two teachers. How can the Government say that it is pro-poor when there are so many teachers in schools in the urban areas than in rural areas?


The speech by the President should have been about addressing socio-economic issues that are affecting the people on the ground. That is why when the President talked about self introspection, I thought he would, first of all, examine all the contents of this speech and then provide the solutions that the country needs. Today, this country is so broke to an extent that it cannot attend to the needs of the people in rural areas. It is failing to even provide the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) which we are talking about. That is the money that goes everywhere in every corner of our constituencies.

Madam Speaker, if they want me to be patriotic, I also need to be considered in the same way they consider themselves there on your right hand side.


Mr Mwiimbu: Hear, hear!


Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, from nowhere, the PF is so rich and has so much money that it spends during election campaigns. Where has that money come from? We need to have a commission of inquiry to find out where the PF is getting that money when the country is even failing to pay salaries and money for the retirees.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Muchima: It seems as though the PF has so much money to buy vitenge. It is so careless with money. Now, where is it getting the money? I wanted the President to tell us the sources of those finances so that the people can also benefit from it. When the PF shares some of the things, they do not consider everybody in this country. During the time we were in Government offices, when we had these vigayo or hammer mills, we used to share those throughout the country. Today, I cannot even know what goes on in the Ministry of Gender and Ministry of Community Development and Social Welfare. I have no clue.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Ngulube: You are in a bad company!


Mr Muchima: Madam Speaker, that is not governance. The moment you ascend to leadership, you have to consider everyone. I can give them an example of the late President Mwanawasa, may his soul rest in peace. He was not voted for by the people in the Luapula Province, but he put up a bridge there. The people of the Western Province did not vote for him, but he put up a bridge there. These are the issues of equity that I am talking about. We need equity in this country. If there was good governance, even these problems we are going through would not be there.

I say that this speech is coming to be a campaign tool. It is so humble because it is talking about issues which this Government has been preaching, but not practicing. I want these things now to be practiced by this Government. If this Government will practice these things, we will have a good country. That way, we will also have a good PF party even though it is too late for it to be reformed.


Madam Speaker, with these few words –


Mr Mwiimbu: No!




Mr Muchima: I want to give chance to others also to contribute to the Motion.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mbangweta (Nkeyema): Madam Speaker, thank you so much for the opportunity to add a few words on the speech which was rendered in this House last week by the President.


My first point is that if this is the fourth speech, what the Zambian people expected were the targets which the Patriotic Front (PF) Government was working towards as compared to the first speech, then there would be no problem. There is no basis regardless what is contained in it. So it just becomes a story. The best practice says if you are going to report progress on any issue, then you would have achieved it, not in a vacuum. That is the best practice the world over.


The second point is that values are not preached, but lived. That is why when you look at the conclusion of the speech on page 49, paragraph 143, the President talked about when he was growing up and the value of being orphans. In the past, orphans lived like their parents were still alive. It was because the communities lived the values, they did not just preach about them. What we have in this Government is that what they say and what they do are totally different.


With regards to tribalism, the agreement policy stated that appointments should have less tribal balancing.  For example, I studied at a university and started work under the First Republic. It is very unfortunate that this ‘One Zambia, One Nation’ motto is taken for granted by our hon. Colleagues, which people in the First Republic worked for.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mbangweta: So, it was not by accident. In the human resource department, there is need to keep statistics relating to the makeup of the work force. The records are there. So everybody in the country could see the reflection of where they come from by looking at the people who were leading them. What have we got now? Three weeks ago or so, nobody paid attention when people complained about the appointments in the public sector and the parastatal sector.


Madam, even some of the people from public institutions who come to appear before the Parliamentary Committees are as if they come from the same village because people just sit there and think it is normal. It is not normal.


Madam Speaker, under the United National Independence Party (UNIP), if there was transgression, like we have seen hon. Ministers making irresponsible statements, the President would dismiss that person the following day because he had powers. He The President would not come here to talk about stopping making tribal remarks. He is the one who is supposed to take action against the people who error. Why do we have the disciplinary code? What is it for?


Madam Speaker, people expect actions and by not taking action against the people who transgress, that is why there is an issue of cadres who caused commotion at the Intercontinental Hotel opposite the diplomatic square. The cadres go and do all sorts of things and then they want to accuse others to say there are no travellers going to the hotel because of negative sentiments. What sentiments?


The diplomats stay there. Who had stopped the police from arresting the people who went to the Intercontinental Hotel, irrespective of where they came from? Is that not embarrassing for a country like ours? What excuse can be given for what occurred and yet those people who were there met each other in the car park? They know whom they spoke to. This is why in this House when you sit and say, “Ooh, bring evidence.” What evidence? If I sit next to somebody, I know like my neighbour here, I meet him somewhere and you mean I cannot recognise him? Somebody has to tell me to bring evidence? So, this is the difficulty –


Mr Fube: On a point of order, Madam.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Fube: Madam Speaker, is the hon. Member of Parliament for, is it Ikeleng’i?


Hon. Members: Nkeyema.


Mr Fube:  Madam Speaker, sorry, it is Nkeyema. I am learning. I am yet to master. Is he in order to say that the Patriotic Front (PF) has not been doing tribal balancing when it is his party that discriminated against the hon. Member of Parliament for Itezhi-tezhi when he was appointed as the hon. Minister of Agriculture and against the hon. Member of Parliament for Sinazongwe when he was appointed as the hon. Minister of Defence? Even Hon. Kafwaya was discriminated against and clearly this is in public domain. Is the hon. Member in order to say that the PF has been against tribal balancing? I thank you.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Unfortunately, the hon. Member for Chilubi has not invited me to make a ruling. So, I will leave it. I suppose that is part of the learning curve.


The hon. Member for Nkeyema was on the Floor. Continue with your debate.


Mr Mbangweta: Madam Speaker, the point I am making is that because we are coming from the background where there was transparency, where information was available, it was never in doubt when Permanent Secretaries (PSs) were asked to produce a list of appointments. At the time there was not even this requirement in the Constitution of 2016, where you say that people making appointments must make sure that the makeup of this country is reflected in the appointments. It was not there. However, our forefathers had enough sense of presence to make sure that people were represented.


Ms Lubezhi: Hear, hear!


Mr Mbangweta: How can people sit here while people are complaining? They cannot even bring information. We asked a question about information over dismissals here in this House. We were told that only thirty-nine people were dismissed in public interest. We told them that was fine but they should produce the list. Have we seen that list here? What was so difficult to bring it? Why were they not compelled to do that because that is out of public interest? If we are complaining and we are Zambians who pay taxes, why should that complaint be ignored? What sort of fairness is that? This is the reason people complain because they have a genuine concern.


Madam Speaker, that is why these people who are vilified, one of the senior citizens, I think one of the former Vice-Presidents of this country said that at independence, the people whom we were verifying brought K3,000, but the verifiers brought K800.


Ms Lubezhi: Hear, hear!


Mr Mbangweta: The people with K3,000, you cannot see the faces at the top table. Then you say they should not complain. What sort of rationale is that?


Madam, I come to this value of good governance and integrity. The Oxford Dictionary defines integrity in this manner. It is the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles. When we talk about Chilubi, I want to say this. I was in Sesheke and President Hakainde was there. President Lungu was also there coming to campaign in the same constituency, but in different places. I went to Kaoma and the Vice-President was there. President Lungu was also there and President Hakainde was there. They were in the same constituency, but in different places.


Madam Speaker, I would like to know what went wrong in Chilubi, which is even bigger than the two constituencies I have mentioned, to the fact that you kick out your friends. When they came in this House, the answer which was given was that those people were not asked to leave the area, but they were asked to leave the place where the Republican President was. What we actually saw is that people were shepherded out from that place and then you come and talk about …


Mr Siwanzi: Question!   


Mr Mbangweta: … how democratic, free and fair the elections were. How can that be? One party had twelve meetings and the other one only campaigned for one hour, but the former proudly marks the examination.


Mr Siwanzi: Question!


Mr Mbangweta: That is wrong.


Ms Mulenga: Awe


Mr Mbangweta: We should not allow that. Competition is good and people should not fear competition. We are talking about national values, but I am saying values cannot just be spoken or pontificated about because they are based on what we do. It is all you do that matters. If those people who went to the Intercontinental Hotel were not arrested, it means their colleagues will do the same because they know that is what counts. Nothing else counts. 


Mr Mbangweta: We Zambians ask why we are paying the Inspector-General of Police. Intercontinental Hotel is less than 500 m from his office. He failed to arrest those people who interrupted that meeting. Then somebody is going to say that we should bring evidence about this incident. Are we serious? These are the issues. The President came here and talked about the Social Cash Transfer Programme and mentioned the figure K574,663. The speech writers should also be sensitive because they know that to deliver this service which failed, K2 million was stolen. You cannot put that in a speech to indicate something which is such a failure because what is expected –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Withdraw the word ‘stolen’.


Mr Mbangweta: I withdraw the word ‘stolen’. The money was misappropriated or given to the wrong people.


Mr Mutelo: It was embezzled.


Mr Mbangweta: On that Social Cash Transfer Programme alone, this country lost K403 million and failed to deliver the service to the required standard. You cannot put that as part of values. He talked about honesty, integrity and so on but K403 million is gone and he has not made an effort to find it and bring it back. The people who made that money disappear are still in their offices. He is not taking action. That is why I agree with my colleague, Hon. Mbulakulima about what he said about civil servants. In this context, I agree with him to a larger extent. The only problem is the politicians who are supposed to take action. For example, an hon. Minister made tribal remarks and they are still in office and the same hon. Minister was asked to come here and answer so many questions that same day after the incidence, when other hon. Ministers who should have assisted were there. It was not loss of us.


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


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order, hon. Member for Nkeyema.


We are going round in circles. We have dealt with this matter. We know the rule that we do not debate ourselves.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: You have made your point. There is no need to get to that extent of almost getting personal. Proceed with your debate.


Mr Mbangweta: Madam Speaker, I appreciate your counsel.


Madam, the other issue is corruption. The President is the one who should lead by example by taking action. What the Zambian people and I expected the President to say was what action he is going to take against the people involved in corrupt activities. That is all he needs to do. Under the UNIP, there was a leadership code. It could have been misconstrued then, but now in retrospect, I can tell you that it was a good deterrent because people could not build houses or drive vehicles that their salaries could not afford, unlike what I see now.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Mbangweta: How can somebody put up a three storey house without a mortgage? Due to corruption, Zambia is the only country where civil servants can build houses without a mortgage. In other countries where there are proper systems, people get mortgages which are commensurate with what they earn. That is why I agree with my colleague. Three quarters of the civil servants who have built mansions would be arrested. Corruption will not end because we the people who are supposed to be taking action are not doing so. It is just words. How can you tell people that you failed to arrest somebody at Intercontinental Hotel? Can you arrest somebody in Nkeyema which so far away? It is not possible, unless you just target them. The proximity of the embarrassment that happened at Intercontinental Hotel to the top office should drive all of us to put our house in order.


Madam Speaker, with those few words, I appreciate the opportunity to speak.


I thank you, Madam.

Prof. Lungwangwa (Nalikwanda): Madam Speaker, the President’s Speech was anchoring on the national values is an extremely important document.


Madam Speaker, those of us who have the privilege to represent our national assembly at the Pan-African Parliament (PAP) interact with colleagues from different parts of Africa. They tell us that Zambia is lucky that it has enshrined what we call “national values” in our Constitution because many countries on the continent do not have national values explicitly stated in their constitutions.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Prof. Lungwangwa: As we interact with our colleagues at continental level, they tell us to inculcate our national values in our people because that is extremely important in national building.


Madam Speaker, those coming from countries like South Sudan, Somalia, the Central African Republic (CAR), Mali and so on say it is extremely important for Zambians to see how best we can use our national values as the foundation for our peace, national development and freedom. So, what we are dealing with here is an extremely important subject. I think we should take it very seriously because other countries do not have what we are debating.


Hon. Members: Hear, hear!


Prof. Lungwangwa: Madam Speaker, I have been in this House for some time now. I have sat on the right side and now I am sitting on the left side. There is one statement I have made in all my debates of the addresses by several Presidents who have come here. What I have said in this House is that the President’s Speech on the national values and principles affords us an opportunity to see the mind, heart and soul of the President with regard to the country that he is leading. I have said it several times when debating the speeches of different presidents on the national values and principles.


Mr Mwamba: Nkeyema, listen!


Prof. Lungwangwa: Clearly, this speech affords us an opportunity to search the heart, mind and soul of the current President of our Republic. In my analysis of the speech, and I will not be long. The conclusion of the speech on page 50, paragraph 146, states:


“For you and me, Zambia is our only God given country, our own true nation, our only heritage, and collectively our home. Therefore, we have no choice but to keep Zambia peaceful and beautiful; not only for ourselves today, but for our children and their children, for tomorrow and eternity.”


Madam, I think this is where the heart, mind and soul of the President is, as far as what he delivered in this House is concerned. From my analysis of this speech, what the President would like to see is a Zambia that affords all of us, young and old, the freedom which our forefathers fought for, the peace and the happiness that we should all have each day that comes.


Madam, I think this is what the President would like to see happen in our country. This is where his heart, soul and mind is. The question is: What is the threat to the heart and soul of the President? I think the threat is on page 9 of the speech. He specifically outlined the national values which he outlined and he stated that these national values contribute to the conscious of the nation and provide a moral campus in the formulation of policy and running of the Government. The threat to our national values, which are very important, is the moral campus of all of leaders in this country. What is the moral campus? The moral campus refers to internalised set of values and objects that guide a person with regard to ethical behaviour. The moral campus is an inner sense which distinguishes what is right from what is wrong. The moral imperative of leadership is the threat to our country with regard to our national values. The threat is that all of us as national leaders have the challenge of the moral campus.


Madam, this is where the problem is. Leaders from different walks of life have very little attention to politically correct language in this country. Most of the language we hear from leaders is the language that is divisive, discriminatory, denigratory, defamatory, disloyal, disrespectful and dishonest. Strictly speaking, we can build our nation on the foundation of our collectively agreed national values because they are not for any group or political gathering. These are national values which we collectively debated in this chamber and agreed that they should be enshrined in the Constitution. However, because of lack of attention to politically correct language, we are, to a large extent, threatening the realisation of our political values which are important.


Madam, all of us must learn to reflect on the national values before we open our mouths. If we do not do that, we are going to develop a political culture in which our people are socialised and what we shall see in our country are citizens being disrespectful to each other and to leaders of this country. We shall see our citizens discriminating among themselves and not valuing each other as citizens because this is what their leaders are doing. This is what they hear from their leaders. If we do not guard ourselves in terms of what we say, we shall see our citizens being disloyal to this country. This is not what we would like to see. This is exactly what happened in Rwanda.


Madam Speaker, the genocide we saw in Rwanda was as a result of many years of hatred mongering in that country. Eventually, that resulted in genocide and more than one million people died because of what came out of the mouth of political leaders who referred to other people as cockroaches, snakes and said they must get rid of the cockroaches. We cannot allow this in this country. So, as leaders, we have the responsibility to uphold the moral campus …


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Prof. Lungwangwa: … of our political leadership and I think we should all rise to the challenge and say, “what is it that I am saying? Is what I am saying in the interest of the development of our country?” I think this is what the speech is telling us and cautioning us.  We should all find a way of coming up with a politically correct language each time we stand up to talk in any forum. We must also sensor what we say before we say it.


 Madam Speaker, I thank you.

Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Kambita (Zambezi East): Madam Speaker, I would like to thank you for according me an opportunity, on behalf of the people of Zambezi East, to debate the speech which was delivered on the Floor of this House by His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia.


Madam, from the outset, I wish to give my feelings about the speech. The speech is important as required by our laws in Article 9 (2) of the Constitution, which requires the Republican President to come to this House to give an update on the progress made in the application of the national values and principles.


 Madam Speaker, the key word there is ‘application’.  I am aware that some of the debaters that have debated before me could have taken this like an academic exercise. Unfortunately, this is not a lecture theatre, where we would use it to simply mention words which are applicable in the academic world.


 Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!


 The hon. Member for Zambezi East will debate without necessarily referring to the debates of others and the styles they use because he too has his own style of debate.


 Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Madam First Deputy Speaker: The hon. Member for Zambezi East will continue.


Mr Kambita: Madam, Speaker, I would like to thank you and I always treasure your guidance. For the sake of time, I will go straight to the substance of my debate.                   


Madam Speaker, the people of Zambezi East expected the speech of the President to address issues to do with values and principles of the nation. Therefore, our expectation was an update on how these values and principles have been applied. Like I had said from the outset, ‘application’ is the key word. I will touch base and make comments on the President’s Address regarding the insecurity that we experienced in the past three months or so, concerning the gassing issue and mob injustice which was meted on innocent citizens and the unruly behaviour exhibited by those agitated by the situation.


Madam Speaker, the President’s Speech was short of giving assurance to us, the people of Zambezi East, as regards our security. It is very clear that the President’s Speech did touch base on what he felt was the cause of the problem. However, he did not categorically state the source of the problem. The President did casually mention about suspects that have been arrested. In his statement, he simply mentioned that investigations were ongoing. There was no hope to us the people of Zambezi East to showcase that the Government was determined to bringing these culprits to book by taking them to court. There was no directive from the President to make sure that our law enforcement agencies speed up these issues in order for people to be taken to court.


Madam Speaker, it is really disheartening to hear the President talk about a commission of inquiry when suspects have been arrested and they are in the custody of the police. We did not expect the President to talk about a commission of inquiry at this stage. We expected the President as the Commander-in-Chief of all Armed Forces to show direction and leadership by emphasising and instructing the hon. Minister of Home Affairs to ensure that the culprits are taken to court. That is the statement the people of Zambezi East were expecting in this speech.


Madam Speaker, moving away from the insecurity situation, I now turn to the substance of this speech and the reason the President came to this House for this address. As I earlier alluded to, the fact is that the President came here to give us an update on the progress that has been made in the application of national values and principles. I did stress, for the third time in my debate I am mentioning, that ‘application’ is the key word.


Madam Speaker, I will itemise the values and make comments on each one of them, as regards how this Patriotic Front (PF) Government has performed in terms of governing this nation.


Madam Speaker, morality and Ethics. As I mention these values and principles, I will attempt to ask tough questions which beg answers as to how the Government has performed against these principles and values. I wonder if it is moral to stand up and consider the by-election that just ended in Chilubi as free and fair.  


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Hon. Government Members: Question!


Mr Kambita: We need to introspect before we can make such declarations. I wonder how one can stand and declare that election for a council chairperson in Kaoma as free and fair and that the Government did its part to ensure that there was law and order in that election. I can go on and on talking about by-elections which have been marred with a lot of violence. The biggest question that still lies around the values, principles, morality and ethics we have set for ourselves is whether we are standing by our words.


Madam, it is unethical to look at an individual’s tribe to ascertain whether they should run for a Government office. I have heard senior people on the right hand side make pronouncements in public fora against the president of our party just because of the ethnic grouping he belongs to. They have stated clearly that he cannot be president of this country due to the tribe he belongs to.


Hon. Government Members: Question!


Mr Kambita: The people of Zambezi East expected the President to come and admonish such people. If that could not happen on the Floor of this House, then I expect such admonishment to be done in the public domain.


Hon. Opposition Members: Hear, hear!


Hon. Government Members: Question!


Mr Kambita: Moving on to the next value –


Mr Nakacinda: On a point of order, Madam Speaker.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Mr Nakacinda: Madam Speaker, I sat here quietly listening to the hon. Member. Is this hon. Member –


Hon. Opposition Members: You are not recognised!


Mr Nakacinda: Madam Speaker, am I recognised?


Hon. Opposition Members: No!


Madam First Deputy Speaker: I said a point of order is raised. You may proceed.


Mr Nakacinda: Is the hon. Member on the Floor in order to attempt to use the President’s Speech that was ably delivered to the nation on the Floor of this House to try and mislead the nation and suggest that there are people on the right or anywhere else, who have made pronouncements against him? (pointing at Mr Kambita) ...


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Debate through the Chair, hon. Member, and avoid pointing.


Mr Nakacinda: ... and the president of his political party, when the facts are in the public domain that it was Rex Natala, Mr Madyenkuku –


Mr Mwiimbu: No! You cannot do that!


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order! Resume your seat, hon. Member.




Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order in the House!


Hon. Members, when you want to rise on a point of order, state it as briefly and clearly as possible, otherwise, you risk debating it making it very difficult for the Chair to rule. Secondly, we know the rules, and one of our rules is that we do not mention people who are not able to come here and debate themselves.


Hon. Nakacinda, if you still wish to proceed with the point of order, avoid mentioning names and very quickly put your point of order across.


Mr Nakacinda: Madam Speaker, I would like to withdraw my point of order, but I promise that I will come to this House with evidence and debate the Motion on the Floor and respond to that misleading debate.




Madam First Deputy Speaker: So, there is no point of order.


Mr Kambita: Madam Speaker, thank you for giving me an opportunity to conclude my debate in this way.


Madam Speaker, before I was interrupted, I was itemising the values and principles that we have set for ourselves as a country. I was just at the end of the first one and wanted to move to the second one. The idea here is to itemise them and lay clear how the PF Government has performed in terms of governing this country against this yardstick.


Madam Speaker, the second value is patriotism and national unity. It is in the public domain that several statements bordering on the disintegration of citizens in this country have been made in the political world. As regards national unity, points have been belaboured on the Floor of this House. We on the left have extended an olive branch to our colleagues on the right in terms of dialogue.




Mr Kambita: We on left have invited the Church to unite us and discuss the best way to unite the nation and move forward together. However, our efforts have hit a snag. Our colleagues on the right have had the habit of shifting goal posts. Even when we have agreed on things, they have always shifted goal posts. The big question that begs an answer is: What kind of behaviour –


Dr Chanda: On a point of order, Madam.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Dr Chanda: Madam Speaker, thank you for allowing me an opportunity to rise on a point order. Is the hon. Member on the Floor in order to allege that we on the right have been refusing to go to dialogue with hon. Members on left, when it is him and his party who refused to join the National Dialogue Forum (NDF), the Select Committee appointed to scrutinise the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Bill No. 10 of 2019 or any other forum?


Madam, I seek your serious ruling.


Hon. Government members: Hear, hear!


Madam First Deputy Speaker: My serious ruling is that the hon. Member for Zambezi East should take that point of order into account. He may proceed.


Mr Kambita: Madam Speaker, that behaviour is a question, like I mentioned.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!

I said proceed with your debate.


Mr Kambita: Madam Speaker, thank you very much for your guidance.


Madam Speaker, the next is democracy and constitutionalism. I wish to pose another question on how the PF Government has performed as regards promoting democracy and constitutionalism. We have had challenges with by-elections. Elected officials serving in various positions, especially at local government level, have suffered in terms of inducements from our colleagues on the right to have by-elections. On the very Floor of this House, we have heard how the second in command in this nation, Her Honour the Vice-President, stated that if there is a buyer, there must be a seller, as regards the buying of councillors. I would like to know if that action of inducing councillors to resign promotes democracy.


Madam Speaker, coming to human dignity and equity, justice and equality, honestly speaking, the case of Tanzania Zambia Railways (TAZARA) workers and many other parastatals is an example of how the dignity of individuals working for such institutions has been impaired. People have four months’ salary arrears. Council workers have joined. Not too long ago, we had the national universities. Not even looking very far, our staff in the National Assembly Constituency Offices …


Mr Daka: On a point of order, Madam Speaker.


Madam First Deputy Speaker: A point of order is raised.


Mr Daka: Madam Speaker, is the hon. Member on the Floor, who is a Member of the Committee that is currently looking into the Tanzania Zambia Railways (TAZARA) issues, in order to bring issues that are being considered by the committee, before the report is brought to this House? I need your serious ruling. Is he is order?




Madam First Deputy Speaker: Hon. Members, because of the implications of that point of order in view of the Member being a member of a specialised committee, I reserve my ruling.


The hon. Member on the Floor may continue.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Kambita: Madam Speaker, we want to compare how this PF Government has performed against this yardstick of our values, principles, good governance and integrity. I wish to know whether there is integrity in buying fire tenders at US$1 million each. I wish to know if there is integrity and good governance in letting go of an hon. Minister who stands on a platform and talks about tribalism without being admonished. The list is long in terms of good governance and integrity.


Madam Speaker, lastly, I wish to talk about sustainable development. Yes, it is a value we have set for ourselves and really a principle that we should endeavour to have sustainable development, but look at the behaviour of the Executive. Since when did we get our Constituency Development Fund (CDF)? How else do they expect to have sustainable development in Zambezi East if the very little that the people of Zambezi East could use to come up with micro-projects that will help them improve their lives is not disbursed?


Madam Speaker, the central Government also does not come up with any meaningful development projects in those areas. That is the reason I wanted to demonstrate clearly how this PF Government must be measured in terms of its performance against these values which we have set for ourselves and imbedded in our Constitution. We surely have a problem.


Madam, I have put across several questions which beg answers. It is time for our hon. Colleagues on your right hand side to take a serious introspection on how we have performed against these values, which are so well-written out and elaborated. Therefore, when the President comes to this House to give us a beautiful speech whose application is questionable, we ask such questions. Like I begun, I will also end with this statement. The key word is ‘application’.

I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Hon. Government Members: Question!


Evg. Shabula (Itezhi-tezhi): Madam Speaker, I would like to thank you for this opportunity you have given me to debate the President’s Speech. In the first place, I would like to thank the President for having come to appear here, and give us a direction of how we should live.


Madam, I would like to point something here and understand that values and principles are very important in the life of an individual, in the life of a nation, and in the life of a company. I have seen organisations that have indicated their core values. Their core values gives them directions and are the compass to the direction where they want to go. So a company or nation that has no core values will work in abstract. It is very important for us to be guided and be given these core values.


Madam Speaker, whilst we have these core values, I have a few questions that require answers. In the speech, it is indicated that progress made in the application of national values and principles. The question is: When you give a report, from what angle are you reporting? What goals did we set for ourselves, so that we able to evaluate ourselves? For me, this is an evaluation tool, so that we see where we are standing in comparison to what we set for ourselves. However, when you peruse the speech, you will not find those core values and principles? They are not in the speech.


Madam, so what is here is just a blanket statement indicating that this country requires core values and principles and because of lack of clarity of what we want, we do not know exactly what we want. Therefore, we do not know what we evaluate and because we do not know what we need to evaluate, we will work in abstract. That is what is there.


Madam Speaker, looking at time, I do not want to go further than that. I just want to indicate that I want to debate four points. I will talk about the gassing issue, tribalism, the Keep Zambia Clean, Green and Healthy Campaign, and then I will also talk about political violence. I would like to start with tribalism. I would like to talk about what constitutes a tribalist –


Hon. Government Members: Morals, morals!


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order, on my right!


Evg. Shabula: Those that are tribalists have got a certain –




 Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!


Hon. Member, just give me a moment and resume your seat.




Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!  


Hon. Member for Itezhi-tezhi, you may proceed.


Evg. Shabula: Thank you so much, Madam Speaker.


If you look at other teachings, those that are tribalists, there are certain indications which describe the characteristics of a tribalist. People get into tribal lines because of the following points. Firstly, it is inferiority complex –


Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order! You will continue tomorrow.


Evg. Shabula: I am coming back tomorrow.




Madam First Deputy Speaker: Order!


(Debate adjourned)




The House adjourned at 1956 hours until 1430 hours on Wednesday, 11th March, 2020.








236. Mr Chiyalika (Lufubu) asked the Minister of General Education:


  1. whether the Government has any plans to rehabilitate Katondo Primary School in Kabwe Central Parliamentary Constituency;
  2. if so, when the plans will be implemented;
  3. what the total cost of the project is; and
  4. what the estimated time frame for the completion of the project is.

The Minister of General Education (Mr Mabumba):  Mr Speaker, the ministry has plans to habilitate Katondo Primary School in Kabwe Central Constituency. However, the ministry at the moment is concentrating on completing the 115 secondary schools under constructing.


The plans for the rehabilitation of the primary school will only be implemented once the 115 secondary schools are complete and when funds will be made available to the ministry. The total cost of the project will be known when an infrastructure team does an assessment of the scope of works to be done. The time for the completion of the project will only be known once the damage to the schools is assessed.


I thank you, Sir.