Thursday, 30th September, 2021

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Thursday, 30th September, 2021


The House met at 1430 hours


[MADAM SPEAKER in the Chair]











The Minister of Green Economy and Environment (Mr Nzovu): Madam Speaker, I have the honour and privilege to present the 2021/2022 Rainy Season forecast. This forecast has been prepared to aid the monthly to seasonal scale planning processes for the agriculture, water, energy, health, disaster risk management, and all socio-economic sectors dependant and affected by the rain season’s performance.


Madam Speaker, the information on the 2021/2022 Rainy Season forecast resonates very well with the mission of the New Dawn Government of His Excellency, Mr Hakainde Hichilema, the President of the Republic of Zambia, which is to foster accelerated national development through the mobilisation and sustainable use of human and natural resources for the empowerment of every Zambian.


Madam Speaker, His Excellency the President, Mr Hakainde Hichilema, in his maiden speech to open the First Session of the Thirteenth National Assembly on 10th September, 2021, outlined the broad policy direction of the Government for the next five years. A well-managed environment is critical for achieving economic recovery, sustained growth, and improved livelihood for our people. It is for this reason that we have placed a premium on dealing with the serious threats posed by climate change.


Madam Speaker, the high variability with frequent droughts, seasonal and flash floods, extreme temperatures, and dry spells are expected to intensify with climate change. With the proposed Ministry of Green Economy and Environment, we will champion environmental sustainability and implement policies that will yield benevolent dividends for generations to come. The President highlighted agriculture and energy sectors as the key areas to economic transformation and the job creation agenda of the New Dawn Government.


Madam Speaker, as you may be aware, weather and climate conditions affect all social and economic sectors across the country. Weather and climate information is, thus, central to decision making and planning across all spheres of social and economic undertakings in our country. Once taken into account and mainstreamed in sector plans, weather and climate information has the potential to mitigate the negative impacts of climate change and contribute positively to national development.


Madam Speaker, the New Dawn Government recognises that weather and climate information is a key ingredient to support the agricultural sector in raising production and productivity in crops, livestock and fisheries to ensure food security for the country. Further, weather and climate information is equally important for mitigating and fighting pests and diseases. Furthermore, the New Dawn Government is aware that climate change has adversely impacted the energy sector. In this regard, weather and climate information will be fundamental in the establishment of energy facilities, and power production and management to lessen the negative impacts of climate variability and climate change.


Madam Speaker, you may wish to note that weather and climate information is also a critical input in water resource management as well as water supply and sanitation. It is also cardinal in water transport in providing early warning for extreme winds and storms on water bodies that may be dangerous to lives and property. It is also a vital component to the safety and operations of air navigation and transportation.

Madam Speaker, let me now share with the nation, through this august House, the 2021/2022 Rainy Season forecast to enable sectors and the general public prepare and make informed decisions for the forthcoming rainy season. The forecast generally indicates that most places in Zambia are likely to receive normal to above normal rainfall during the rainy season except for the north-western parts of the country which are likely to receive normal to below normal rainfall. The season is likely to be established by the end of November 2021 over most parts of the country. Areas over the Northern Province, Luapula Province, the North-Western Province, Copperbelt Province, and the Western Province are likely to experience thunderstorms and showers by October 2021. The season is likely to be characterised by drier conditions over the north-eastern portions of the country and wetter conditions over the southern and western parts of the country.


Madam Speaker, there is a high chance that the north-western part of the country will have a late start and early cessation of the rains. There is also an indication of an early start of the 2021/2022 Rainy Season especially over the western half of the country.


Madam Speaker, the whole forecast of the season has been segmented into four periods of three-month totals as follows: For the period October, November and December (O|ND), areas over the North-Western Province, the Western Province, the Southern Province, Copperbelt Province, Lusaka Province, and Luapula Province, including parts of the Central Province and the Eastern Province, are likely going to receive normal to above normal rainfall. On the other hand, areas over the Northern Province and Muchinga Province, including Kabwe, Kapiri Mposhi, Serenje, Mkushi, Chitambo, Mambwe, Lumezi, Chasefu, and Lundazi districts are likely going to receive normal to below normal rainfall with a likelihood of the delayed onset of the rains.


Madam Speaker, for the period November, December and January (NDJ), areas over the North-Western Province, the Western Province, the Southern Province, the Copperbelt Province, Lusaka Province, the Eastern Province, and Luapula Province, including parts of the Central  Province and Muchinga Province are likely to receive normal to above normal rainfall. However, areas around Mwinilunga, Ikeleng’i, Choma, Chitambo, Mambwe, and Mansa districts plus much of the Northern Province are likely going to receive normal to below normal rainfall.  


Madam Speaker, as we progress into December, January, and February (DJF), most areas over Zambia are likely going to receive normal to above normal rainfall. In contrast, Senanga, Sioma, Shang’ombo, Chilanga, Kasempa, Ndola, Kitwe, Masaiti, Luanshya, Kalulushi, Mkushi, Serenje, Lundazi, Chasefu, Chama, Isoka, Chinsali, Mungwi, Nakonde, Senga Hill, Mpulungu, and Mbala districts and surrounding areas are expected to receive normal to below normal rainfall.


Madam Speaker, during the final three months of the season, January, February, and March (JFM), areas over Luapula Province , the Copperbelt Province , the North-Western Province , the Western Province, the Southern Province, Lusaka Province, and the Central Province, including parts of the Eastern Province, Lavushimanda, and Mpika districts are likely going to receive normal to above normal rainfall, while most areas over the Northern Province and Muchinga Province as well as Lundazi, Chasefu, Chipangali, Mazabuka, Monze, and Livingstone districts are likely going to receive normal to below normal rainfall.


Madam Speaker, during the 2021/2022 Rainy Season, areas that are projected to receive normal to below normal rainfall may experience the following:


  1. dry spells with a possibility of crop rotting;
  2. inadequate water for domestic consumption, agriculture, animals, and energy production among others; and
  3. increased chance of agriculture pests and diseases.


Madam Speaker, areas that are likely to receive normal to above normal rainfall in a particular period may experience the following:


  1. floods, including flash floods, especially in prone areas;
  2. fungal and waterborne diseases such as cholera, dysentery, and typhoid;
  3. increase in rates of malaria transmission;
  4. infrastructure damage, especially to civil structures such as roads, dams, bridges and culverts; and
  5. occurrence of agriculture pests across the country.


Madam Speaker, generally, the rains are expected to be established by the end of November in most parts of the country –




Madam Speaker: Order!


Those hon. Members who have their Zoom on, please switch it off. We are trying to listen to the ministerial statement on the rainfall forecast. We are being interrupted and cannot hear properly. If you have challenges, please ask the technocrats to assist you in switching off or just walk outside and sort it out.


The hon. Minister, continue.


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, generally, the rains are expected to be established by end of November 2021 in most parts of the country. However, some areas may receive rains earlier than expected. Therefore, farmers are advised to store their harvest properly to avoid damage. It is also important to note that in every season, dry spells occur and in certain circumstances may result into crop loss. In this regard, I wish to urge our farmers and other stakeholders to regularly get in touch with my ministry to access meteorological forecasts and updates.


Madam Speaker, I urge each sector to carry out sensitisation programmes on good sanitation and hygiene practices, and clearing of drainage systems well in advance to avoid water pools that may lead to the increased transmission of diseases. In addition, institutions may need to prepare and stockpile relief materials, medicines and pesticides that may be required during the season. My ministry further wishes to encourage the general public to plant trees as a measure to mitigate climate change and environmental degradation, thereby contributing to improving rainfall performance.


Madam Speaker, as this forecast is based on three-month averages, users of this forecast are advised to get regular updates on the actual and expected distribution of rainfall during the entire rainy season through community radio stations, the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC) radio and television stations, including electronic platforms such as electronic mail, WhatsApp, and websites, among others. My ministry will continue giving these updates to the nation throughout the rainy season.


Madam Speaker, I commend the Strengthening Climate Resilience for Agriculture Livelihoods in Agro-Ecological Regions I and II, that is the Climate Forecast Enabled Knowledge Services (CRALA) Project, and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for supporting the generation of the 2021/2022 Rainy Season forecast. I further wish to extend my gratitude to stakeholders who collaborated with the Government to generate the projected rainfall performance for the 2021/2022 Rainy Season. These include the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) Climate Services Centre, the Zambia Red Cross Society, ZESCO Limited, the Zambezi River Authority (ZRA) and the World Food Programme (WFP), among others.


Madam Speaker, I wish all of you a very fruitful 2021/2022 Rainy Season. I thank you, and may God bless you and may God bless this great nation.


I thank you, Madam.


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


Mr Kampyongo (Shiwang’andu): Madam Speaker, my concern first of all is that the hon. Minister should have been in the Chamber as per established procedure so that he can be engaged. I think we need the Leader of Government Business in the House and the Chief Whip to ensure that hon. Ministers are brought here when they are to make such important statements.


Madam Speaker, I want to want to thank the hon. Minister for that very critical ministerial statement –


Madam Speaker: Order!


There is a point of order by the hon. Member for Nyimba.


Mr Menyani Zulu: Madam Speaker, I have not raised any point of order.


Madam Speaker: The hon. Member for Shiwang’andu may proceed.


Mr Kampyongo: Madam Speaker, the information shared by the hon. Minister is very critical for all the sectors that depend on the rainy season such as energy, farming, and others. I expect that the hon. Minister of Agriculture will soon be coming to share with us how quickly he can respond to that forecast which has been given because that will determine how soon farming inputs can be distributed to our farmers, considering that in some areas, the onset of rains will be early while in others, it will be delayed. I heard the hon. Minister say that he would like members of the public to visit his ministry. However, his ministry is new and we are yet to know where it is hosted.


Madam Speaker, what strategy is the hon. Minister going to put in place to disseminate that critical information so that my village farmers in Shiwang’andu and Chinsali where he said we expect normal and below normal rainfall can be helped to prepare themselves for this rainy season? I would like to find out the strategy which the hon. Minister is going to put in place for disseminating and sharing information with other sectors apart from farmers.


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, indeed, I should have been in the Chamber if I had been advised on time. However, next time I will be there. I am ready to function even where I am because of the good systems which are in place.


Madam Speaker, allow me to inform the hon. Member that before coming to Parliament to deliver this speech, the various departments under my ministry, especially the Meteorological Department, were already ready to share this information. The ministry has translated this information into all the local languages, which it will start showing on television tomorrow. So, we are ready to disseminate this information through all the media platforms, which are available. We are ready and the people of Shiwan’gandu will be informed immediately. I was only waiting to issue a ministerial statement, which I have done, and after that, all group systems will be running. So, let me assure the hon. Member that the people of Shiwan’gandu and the rest of the country will receive this information on time.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Mung’andu (Chama South): Madam Speaker, is the New Dawn Government going to embrace a multi-sectoral approach considering the information they are giving the people, particularly the people of Chama South, who experience floods and drought? Is the ministry sharing the information with the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU), so that in the event of floods as the case has been in the past four or five years, it will be able to position relief aid to the people on time, as opposed to waiting for a disaster to strike, and people would need to use helicopters? Has the ministry shared that information with other emergency departments for planning purposes?


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, as the hon. Member rightly put it, this is a ‘New Dawn’ Administration and we are already ready ahead of time. Yesterday, we had a ministerial committee, listening to the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU). We are thinking ahead of the various interventions we will have to take should we have floods. So, indeed, we are going to involve all the other sectors of the economy and all the ministries are involved. We were with the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Water Development and Sanitation, the Ministry of Health and all the other ministries. The contingency plans, including sourcing funding, are already in progress. So, we are ready for any eventualities should we have floods as it may have been predicted.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Mutale (Chitambo): Madam Speaker, we have heard from the Government that our coffers seem to be empty. This is according to what has been alleged by the Government. Could the hon. Minister assure this nation that his ministry, through the multi-sectoral approach that it has taken over the would-be eventualities, will find resources to manage what might happen.


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, as the hon. Minister of Finance correctly put it, indeed, we found empty coffers and that is not in question. All the economic fundamentals are pointing to the wrong direction. One thing we have quickly done is to attract investor confidence and stop the corruption. All the outlets that were going through in the previous Government have stopped. There are some inflows coming in now and, obviously, these will be channelled to important sectors because we value our people. We will ensure that our people who will be negatively affected are taken care of. As to whether we found empty coffers or not, I think that is obvious. We found empty coffers, but with the little money that we have already collected and since corruption has stopped, we will ensure that these funds are properly used.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Miyutu (Kalabo Central) Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister for that statement. My question is on the upgrading of the equipment at the various meteorological stations throughout this country. Are we assured that all the meteorological stations have the modern required equipment that is giving us relevant and reliable data, which will lead to proper planning?


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, I am privileged to lead this ministry in which the meteorological department is. This is a department I have worked with for the last twenty years. Indeed, the equipment there needs to be replaced. However, there is some equipment that we are using at the moment and it has been calibrated with some equipment that was recently installed. There is a lot of goodwill in that area. We will need to ensure that all the scientific equipment we need to collect data to use to ensure that we develop sustainably with the environment is in proper working condition. So, indeed, my ministry is already talking to the Ministry of Finance to ensure that we have reliable equipment at the net station. As it is right now, we are using the data which is there. We are getting some reliable information and we will continue using it.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Chanda (Kanchibiya) Madam Speaker, is the ministry thinking of rain harvesting and do we expect the hon. Minister to come to Parliament to give us a policy direction around rain harvesting in light of climate change? Secondly, the reforestation –


Madam Speaker: Hon. Member, you are only allowed to ask one question.


Mr Chanda: Madam Speaker, I am guided.


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, the hon. Member is right. We are thinking in that direction and measures to ensure that as the rain falls, it is not completely wasted, will be put in place.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Chinkuli (Kanyama): Madam Speaker, the hon. Minister mentioned that people are advised to plant trees to help with climate change, which is very good advice. However, in an event that people do not take heed of what has been advised, what measures has the Government put in place to ensure that trees are planted?


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, the hon. Member has asked a very critical question. I am glad to inform the House that, this afternoon, Hon. Miles Sampa joined me in planting trees in Kanyama. This is a very important exercise and I invite all hon. Members to join us to ensure that trees are planted. Remember science says that trees give us oxygen and remove carbon dioxide. Therefore, they are a very important element in the climate change chain.


Madam Speaker, coming to his advice, indeed, one of the best ways to encourage people to plant trees is basically to raise awareness on the negative consequences of climate change. If we lose our forests, economic development based on environmental sustainability will not be achieved. We are going all out on radio and television (TV) stations and through this House to make people aware that the negative effects of climate change are a matter of life and death.


Madam Speaker, you may wish to note that when the President came to this House, one of the things that his speech was anchored on was the negative effects of climate change on economic sustainability. He also spoke about this during the United Nations (UN) General Assembly. This is a topical agenda in the world now and, indeed, Zambia must not be left behind. We can only develop our economy sustainably if we ensure that the environment is utilised sustainably. I call on all hon. Members of Parliament to join us, in the New Dawn Government, in this drive to ensure the environment is protected.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Ms Kasune (Keembe): Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Minister for the statement. My question is a follow up to the one asked by the hon. Member who just asked about ensuring that trees are planted. What is it that the ministry is also doing to ensure that the cutting down of trees, which has become so rampant especially in rural areas, is really mitigated, if not stopped, in view of the fact that there is no electricity or solar systems in our rural constituencies?


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for that question. Indeed, our population, especially in the rural areas, depends on natural resources for survival. Charcoal burning is a means of survival. One way we are going to reduce deforestation is to ensure that we develop this country. Economic development and job creation to ensure that our citizens are empowered is a broader way of ensuring that deforestation goes down.


Madam Speaker, the other way is to ensure that we support other activities such as agriculture. We need to support agriculture because, as you know, the agricultural sector is the biggest employer of our people, especially those in the rural areas. So, we need to improve the economy to support our people. Additionally, we also need to raise awareness for people to know that for them and their grandchildren to survive, these natural resources must be protected.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr J. Chibuye (Roan): Madam Speaker, I would like to find out from the hon. Minister if at all he is working in conjunction with other line ministries in as far as what he mentioned in his ministerial statement concerning diseases and floods in some parts of the country is concerned. I am saying so because in my constituency, there is a complete collapse of the sewer network. As such, the fecal matter does not find its route to the sewer ponds and the compounds have been turned into sewer ponds. What is his ministry together with other ministries doing to avert or avoid the outbreak of contagious diseases such as cholera, typhoid and, of course, bilharzia?


Madam Speaker: Hon. Members, as we are asking questions, we are seeking clarification on the ministerial statement. Let us not expand the questions to areas that have not been brought up. I know the hon. Minister has talked about the possibility of disease outbreaks, but when we go to specifics, it will not be fair because the hon. Minister might have not been prepared to answer such a question. So, that question is disallowed.


Mr Mwambazi (Bwana Mkubwa): Madam Speaker, my question is: Since there are looming floods, what mitigation plans has the ministry put in place to ensure that people’s lives as well as livestock are safeguarded?


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, now that the rainfall forecast has come out, my ministry has run models to see the flooding patterns as a result of the expected rainfall we are going to receive. Based on the results from those models, we are going to advise on the people who are likely to be affected by the floods. One sure way we will protect our people is to educate them that danger is coming so that they are able to move away, especially from the river banks. So, raising awareness is one sure way.


Madam Speaker, another way is that we have come up with a strategy to ensure that we provide relief food and temporal shelter. This is under the DMMU. As we met as the Council of hon. Ministers yesterday, we approved a budget towards this activity.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Katakwe (Solwezi East): Madam Speaker, I want the hon. Minister to give the people of Solwezi an assurance concerning the statement that he has just given. Up north of Solwezi, we normally get heavy rains and the people are usually cut-off from accessing the Solwezi/Kipushi Border. Moreover, the National Road Fund Agency (NRFA) has not released the funds to pay the contractor who has been working on that road and the contractor is about to pull out of the site. So, what assurance is the hon. Minister giving the people of Solwezi, especially Solwezi East and Mushindamo District, that they will not be cut-off?


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, as you can imagine, we are talking about potential disasters and I am very sure that the DMMU through the Vice-President’s Office is preparing for such events. I think I will leave it to the DMMU, through the Vice-President’s Office, to issue a comprehensive statement.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Menyani Zulu (Nyimba): Madam Speaker, having listened to the ministerial statement, I can see we are getting there, but my question is: What measures have been put in place to replace charcoal and wood as sources of energy, especially for us villagers? This would enable us to reduce on tree cutting and the floods and droughts can be minimised. Looking at the ministerial statement, I can see as a farmer that we are going to have problems here and there. So, what measures have been put in place to stop people from cutting trees anyhow?


Madam Speaker: Hon. Member for Nyimba, that question was asked by the hon. Member for Keembe and it has been answered by the hon. Minister.


Mr Nkulukusa (Katuba): Madam Speaker, I was wondering why, many times, the Go Green Campaign has yielded very few results when it comes to the planting of trees. It is a great idea to plant a lot of trees. A green environment is the way to go.


Madam Speaker, how are we sustaining the tree planting projects to make sure that the trees become the big trees of tomorrow? Many a time, when we plant, we do not go back to look at whether or not those trees are being looked after to sustain them and ensure that they become the big trees of tomorrow.  What plan do we have to ensure that tree growing is sustainable?


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, other than the programme for the sustainability of the trees, I would like to inform the House that we are budgeting for afforestation. We are also budgeting for the training of our forest officers and for awareness campaigns. So, we have come up – yes indeed, in this very short time because the New Dawn Government was ready to rule – with awareness measures through radio and television. We have also enlisted chiefs through the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development to help us manage these forests. Remember that it is only when the general populous is made aware that matters of environmental sustainability are matters of life and death and that  these are what will anchor our sustainable development will we come to a place where the cutting down of trees is seen by ourselves and our local communities as something which is very bad. So, I encourage hon. Members to ensure that they educate our populous.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Munsanje (Mbabala): Madam Speaker, what measures have been put in place to safeguard the lives of persons with disabilities in some provinces where flooding is being anticipated? In the past, we saw persons with disabilities, such as those on wheelchairs, persons with low vision and those who use callipers, left to face the floods with no support. The Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) did not seem to have any technical expertise in that area to face that challenge. I request the hon. Minister to give us an update on that.


Madam Speaker: Hon. Member of Parliament for Mbabala, the question is not seeking clarification on the ministerial statement as such. It expanding onto other issues. Maybe that can be asked some other time in another session, but not specifically during this session for the ministerial statement.


Mr Malambo: (Magoye): Madam Speaker, will there be a deliberate policy to help revamp the rural forestry departments to ensure that they breed nurseries for onward distribution to communities for afforestation?


Mr Nzovu: Madam Speaker, I can confirm that the revamping of that particular department is critical if the Ministry of Green Economy and Environment is to deliver on the New Dawn Government’s aspirations to ensure that there is environmental sustainability. Yes, I can confirm that we are going that direction.


I thank you.








3.  Mr Wamunyima (Nalolo):  asked the Minister of Technology and Science:


  1. whether the Government is aware that citizens’ phones, WhatsApp and Skype calls as well as Short Message System (SMS) are tapped into by the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) as reported in the Daily Mail Newspaper of Thursday, 23rd  September, 2021;
  2. if so, whether the act is not an infringement of citizens’ right to privacy as enshrined in the Constitution; and
  3. what urgent measures are being taken to ensure that citizens’ guaranteed right to privacy is protected.


The Minister of Technology and Science (Mr Mutati): Madam Speaker, the Government is not aware of any citizen’s phone, WhatsApp and Skype calls as well as Short Message Systems (SMS) being tapped into by the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC).  The FIC does not operate outside the provisions of the law. The mandate of the FIC is guided by the Financial Intelligence Act No. 46 of 2010 read together with the Financial Intelligence Center (Amendment) Act No. 4 of 2016 and the Financial Intelligence Center (Amendment) Act No. 16 of 2020.


Madam Speaker, as stated in the response to part (a) of the question, the FIC operates within the confines of the law.


Madam Speaker, the Government, through the Cyber Security and Cyber Crimes Act No.2 of 2021, prohibits the interception of communication. In addition, the Data Protection Act No.3 of 2021 provides for the protection of personal information and this ensures that citizens’ right to privacy is guaranteed and protected.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Wamunyima: Madam Speaker, is the Government willing to undertake a multi-sectoral investigation approach regarding such information, if it is in public domain and in a newspaper for that matter? The sharing of that information is tantamount to misinforming the public and has the potential to cause unnecessary alarm? What is the ministry’s next step to prevent such misleading, if that is the case, information from reaching the public?


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, indeed, part of creating awareness to citizens is through hon. Members of Parliament asking pertinent questions and for us as the Government to respond. Indeed, I think the citizens are now listening that their information is protected.


I thank you, Madam.


Mr Mutale (Chitambo): Madam Speaker, the hon. Minister did indicate that the Government is not aware about the issue of people’s phones being tapped. Now that the Government has been made aware through this newspaper, what is it doing about it?


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, a bold and direct question whether or not the FIC was tapping phones would have been helpful, and the answer is no. So, there is nothing else for us to do.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Kampyongo (Shiwang’andu): Madam Speaker, indeed, there have been reports in some tabloids. I do recall seeing a story in the Daily Nation regarding the same matter of a system being procured by the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC). I think this is what could have generated anxiety in members of the public. Could the hon. Minister confirm whether or not, there is a system that was procured or there is an intention for the procurement of a system for such surveillance purposes so that people’s anxieties can be rested seeing as the reports were quite extensive in the tabloid I have cited.


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, those reports that the hon. Member has referred to are completely inaccurate.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Simumba (Nakonde): Madam Speaker, does the Government know where this information has come from? Is the ministry ready to find out what made the Daily Nation publicise that information?


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, that is a very difficult question, but let me just say that speculation is not one of our competences and neither is guesswork. I have explained that the Government is not aware and it remains as such.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Mumba (Kantanshi): Madam Speaker, I am having difficulties appreciating the ministry’s position simply because the Daily Nation is a very big newspaper and a carrier of a lot of information to the country. Also, there have been reports on the system that was procured or is in the process of being procured. In fact, the reports are related to the embezzlement of funds to be clear.


Madam Speaker: Order!


Hon. Member, ask your question.


Mr Mumba: Madam Speaker, yes, I am coming to my question. Since the ministry does not do guess work, with the size of the coverage of the Daily Nation, is there any way the Government can create the comfort which the people of Zambia are requesting for regarding whether their phones are tapped or not through the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC)?


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, for the sake of clarity, we do agree that the Daily Nation is a newspaper with massive circulation, but everybody knows that not everything that goes in a newspaper is accurate, for starters. Secondly, we have said categorically that no tapping has been done by the FIC and that is what the citizens need to know.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Wamunyima (Nalolo): Madam Speaker, are we going to allow such careless information to circulate and just say that we are not aware of it? That careless information which is circulating, can we know, as matter of fact, how the hon. Minister arrived at it being referred to as speculation because when information is in a public newspaper, it is in the public domain such that it should not just be dismissed  without proper steps being explained of how that stage was arrived at. Was there an independent team set up to investigate that this is speculation?


 Mutati: Madam Speaker, the FIC did issue a statement that this is speculation.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Chinkuli (Kanyama): Madam Speaker, for me, this is an allegation. It is alleged that phones are being tapped. At law, he who alleges must prove. So, since we know the person who is alleging that there is this activity happening, why can we not just approach that person and inquire more?


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, even in the article, it was indicated that it was an ‘informed source’. If that information had any credibility, I am sure the Daily Nation would have indicated the source. So, if you ask me or the FIC that it should go and investigate an informed source, it will be like a walk in the garden.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Ms Kasune (Keembe): Madam Speaker, given the speculations that are coming out strongly that there is the tapping of information of the citizens, is there a way that the ministry can take another way forward in terms of educating the public beyond just Parliament so that this issue is put to rest?


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. Member for that progressive question. Indeed, the ministry will take necessary measures to educate the public regarding this matter.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr Mwambazi (Bwana Mkubwa): Madam Speaker, very straightforward questions have been asked to the hon. Minister about what the ministry has done or any steps it has taken so that we know the position over this issue that is bordering on people’s privacy. So, we need a firm answer from the hon. Minister. What measures are being taken to ensure that this issue is cleared?


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, for the purpose of repetition, the question was: “Is the ministry aware that the phones are being tapped.” My response was ‘No’. Therefore, that is the correct position. So, if it is not happening, what next steps does the ministry need to take? The next step that the ministry will take is to create an awareness campaign for the public that this is not happening.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Ms Lungu (Chawama): Madam Speaker, I appreciate the hon. Minister’s responses. However, since these are serious allegations, does the ministry intend to take any action against the newspaper?


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, indeed, it is a serious allegation. The ministry will review its position and will indicate the next step.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr B. Mpundu (Nkana): Madam Speaker, from the responses that we have got from the hon. Minister over this matter, would it be right to suggest that going forward, the ministry must admonish – or as a follow up to what was suggested by the hon. Member for Chawama, that this matter must be investigated thoroughly? Is it okay to suggest that any information that is obtained on a phone without prior knowledge of an individual cannot be used in prosecuting the individual who is found with such information? It is clear and everybody is aware that the security wings tap into our technological gadgets. Is the hon. Minister alleging that the security wings do not tap into our phones?


Madam Speaker: The words “the Minister is alleging” are not being used correctly. However, the hon. Minister is here and he can answer for himself.


Mr Mutati: Madam Speaker, perhaps, let me read the law in order to assist. The Cyber Security and Cyber Crimes Act No. 4 of 2021, Part II, Section 28 states:


“A law enforcement officer may, where the law enforcement officer has reasonable grounds to believe that an offence has been committed, is likely to be committed or is being committed and for the purpose of obtaining evidence of the commission of an offence under this Act, apply, ex-parte, to a Judge, for an interception of communications order.”


The key words are “apply to a judge”.


I thank you, Madam Speaker.




Madam Speaker: Since there are no further supplementary questions, we will proceed with maiden speeches. The hon. Member for Lukulu East.


Dr Kalila (Lukulu East): Madam Speaker, I am grateful for this opportunity to present my maiden speech to this Thirteenth National Assembly.


Madam Speaker, like all my hon. Colleagues, let me begin by placing on record, on behalf of my people in Lukulu East and, indeed, on my own behalf, our congratulations to His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Hakainde Hichilema and the entire top leadership of the United Party for National Development (UPND) for emerging victorious in the 12th August, 2021 General Elections.


Madam Speaker, I equally congratulate you and your team of Presiding Officers for ascending to the helm of this august House. I equally place on record my congratulations to all hon. Members who have made it to this august House. I know it is not easy. Congratulations to all of you hon. Colleagues.


Madam Speaker, this is the third time that I have been elected by the wonderful people of Lukulu, having been elected for the first time in September, 2011. I am, however, in my fourth term of office, having come earlier in 2008 as a Nominated Member.


Madam Speaker, in my parliamentary journey, I owe everything to the people of Lukulu and I am truly grateful to the people of Lukulu who have always come to my aid and support, sometimes against all odds as it happened on 12th August, 2021.


Madam Speaker, I also want to congratulate my campaign team which worked tirelessly to ensure that I am elected together with all the candidates that stood on our party ticket. In particular, I have in mind my campaign team, comprising Mr Kelis Kapaku, Mr Cassidy Chinkwanda and Mr Joseph Kamala Kapyaila and our ever-green constituency chairman, Mr Jameson Phiri.


Madam Speaker, this campaign team worked very tirelessly amid a very difficult campaign. Not only did we face the other political players, but we also faced a very senior Government official who camped in our district, splashing a lot of money using a helicopter and buying animals for slaughter to give to villagers. We were wondering what had happened to the electoral regulations and rules.


Madam Speaker, we believe that that was grossly unfair, in spite of our complaints to the District Election Management Committee (DEMC), and sometimes, we escalated it further. We hope that in a democratic dispensation such as ours, which is governed by the rule of law, this kind of thing should never happen again. I can understand why many people, including the people of Lukulu, have vowed that never shall there be a time when the previous Government will come back to power because of the brazen abuse and total disregard of electoral rules and regulations, as it happened.


Madam Speaker, I, therefore, call upon the investigative wings to probe this former Permanent Secretary who camped in our district throughout the campaign period, brazenly and with impunity campaigning on a day to day basis, to find out where he got a lot of the resources and the helicopter. If found wanting, this individual should be brought to book.


Madam Speaker, I also want to thank my family, in particular my wife Nora, who has been by my side, together with my three children, Christian, Christabel and Benaiah, who have seen me sometimes, channelling family resources towards fighting these elections.


Madam Speaker, Lukulu East is a very vast constituency with seventeen wards and a population of slightly over 58,000. Some of the major challenges in this constituency are multi-dimensional poverty and infrastructure, in particular, the famous Katunda/Lukulu/Watopa Road.


Madam Speaker, although the constituency has made tremendous progress, my people continue to cry over this very important road because it will invariably be the game changer for the status of Lukulu.


Madam Speaker, on the development index, Lukulu is currently ranked No. 85 out of 156 constituencies. In the Western Province, we are ranked No. 9 out of nineteen constituencies. This information is readily available in a report that was produced in 2019 by the then Ministry of National Development Planning now Ministry of Finance and National Planning called the sub-naational report. I have a copy with me and hon. Members who are interested can get themselves a copy, which will show them exactly where their constituencies stand in terms of ranking and development. Kabwata Parliamentary Constituency is ranked as the best constituency followed by Lusaka Central Parliamentary Constituency all the way and the least is Kaumbwe Parliamentary Constituency. In between, Lukulu Parliamentary Constituency is No. 85. Indeed, we have made major strides, but more needs to be done.


Madam Speaker, when I took over this constituency, there were only three secondary schools but we now have thirteen schools because the biggest concentration during my term of office has been education. This is because I personally have been a beneficiary of education, which has propelled me to where I am today. So, over the years, I have felt that I should pay back to the people because I believe that education is not only an equalizer, but it empowers citizens to solve their own problems and that is why we have concentrated on this sector. We have done away with the whole pole and mud schools. Currently, we have shifted our concentration from education to the health sector.


Madam Speaker, we have a new district hospital, nursing college and about six or seven health posts, which we have added, but we believe that we can do more. As a mark of gratitude and to say thank you to the people of Lukulu who have been by my side every time I have called upon them, I am personally building two schools for them from our family resources. We recently roofed those two schools plus a market so as to pay back the people for what they have been to us.


Madam Speaker, poverty still reigns very high. About 69 per cent of our citizens live in extreme poverty while 85 per cent are below the poverty datum line, which means that the single most important challenge currently is multi-dimensional poverty. We believe that if the Katunda/Lukulu/Watopa Road is done, it will significantly change the constituency by attracting investment which is so much needed in that constituency in order for our people to be pulled out of poverty.


Madam Speaker, the other challenge, of course, is lack of access to clean and safe drinking water, which also would change a lot if this is taken into account. We have recently been connected to the national electricity grid, we have a community radio station, so, we believe that the only challenge at the moment is to give us this road. However, we are gratified by the fact that UPND has now taken over Government and that not only are we going to make pronouncements, but we will walk the talk. Currently, we are in dialogue with the hon. Minister of The Minister of Infrastructure, Housing and Urban Development together with my colleague, Hon. Mutelo. We believe that we are actually knocking on an open door for we know that this shall be done. I can only assure our people that going forward, our concentration with my hon. Colleagues shall be on this very important road and ensuring access to safe and clean drinking water. With these, I believe that I shall be able to pay back the people for the massive support that has enabled me to be in this House a record of four terms.


Madam Speaker, I wish to thank you for this opportunity.


Mr Twasa (Kasenengwa): Madam Speaker, I would like to thank you for the opportunity to address this House.


Madam Speaker, your taking that position is an example to all women including my four daughters that they can aim higher, right up here in Zambia with the full conviction that their gender is not a stumbling block to their aspirations. It is my hope that you will use this privileged position to serve all the Zambian people and not only one political party. While I congratulate you, I also note over all, the appointments we have seen so far have not significantly increased the number of women in key positions. I hope His Excellency the President will take urgent action to correct this situation before he tarnishes his own image and, indeed, that of this country.


Madam Speaker, I would like to express my full gratitude to God for the privilege given to me to serve this nation as Member of Parliament for Kasenengwa. I am grateful to the former Republican President His Excellency Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu and the Patriotic Front (PF) for according me the chance to stand as a candidate in the previous elections. My sincere appreciation also goes to the people of Kasenengwa for the mandate they have given me. I say thank you to Nzima and his group, Mr Gibson Tembo, the district chairman and his team, Mr Sylvester Zulu, the constituency chairman and his team, pastors, headmen and, indeed, the chiefs.


Madam Speaker, I would not be standing here if my family had not stood by my side during such a grueling campaign. I am very grateful for their steadfastness and support. My party officials in Kasenengwa and at national level played a significant role in creating the environment and providing resources that were crucial for us to deliver on our message of continued development for all. I say thank you so much to Kasenengwa, the PF and the former President Dr Edgar Chagwa Lungu.


Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Twasa: Madam Speaker, my congratulations also go to His Excellency the President, Mr Hakainde Hichilema and his leadership team for winning the elections.


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Twasa: Mwakondwela ka?


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Madam Speaker: Meaning?


Mr Twasa: Madam, are they happy?


Hon. Government Members: Hear, hear!


Twasa: I also thank Dr Edgar Chagwa Lungu.


Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Twasa: Madam Speaker, hon. Colleagues in the United Party for National Development (UPND), you have inherited a country with huge dreams. You have also inherited a healthy inventory of infrastructure for many sectors as well as a robust set of policies to promote tourism and improve output in agriculture and many other sectors. They should build forward better and not make a habit of breaking promises like what we have already seen.


Hon. Government Members: Question!


Mr Twasa: Madam Speaker, fellow legislators, the business of the Thirteenth National Assembly starts at a crucial moment, a moment when people’s hopes and aspirations have risen to astronomical levels. It is a moment when challenges facing us are many and seem equally insurmountable not least because of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), but also because of the inevitable catastrophes caused by climate change, a moment when a new administration has promised a new dawn and unity, yet it perpetuates untold violence against traders in the markets and other public places.


Madam, the challenges of this time call for principled women and men, focused, committed and above all, servant leaders. This is what I personally bring to this Parliament and this is what the people of Kasenengwa have sent me here to do.


Madam Speaker, I am a businessman. I grew up at a farm in Palabana in Chongwe District. I grew up tilling the land to produce cabbages, maize and other crops for sale. Besides farming, I also learnt from my grandfather how to make reed mats. This training taught me to work very hard for myself, and this is the mindset that I am here to champion.


Madam Speaker, as a young boy I cultivated my own piece of land to pay for my transport and school fees. You will, therefore, understand me when I take particular interest in promises made around education. I am also particularly heart broken when such promises are broken. Ya! Like to sell the Presidential Jet in the morning and pay for bursaries, that is a broken promise.


Hon. UPND Members: Question!


Hon. PF Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Twasa: My mother was a teacher who walked eight kilometres every single day to and from school where she taught. She delivered on her promises. She woke up early morning every day. She was at school on time and did her part for the community. I grew up seeing that dedication. I grew up seeing her respect for education.


Madam Speaker, it truly breaks my heart to see promises made on education broken fast and without due regard for the hardworking men and women in this sector. It breaks my spirit to see women who work hard every single day sidelined in the most important work of statecraft. I want to make my promise to the women out there that I standing with them in this journey. They have a son and a brother here who will fight this injustice with them.


Madam Speaker, I had a privilege to build my own business in the travel and tourism industry. I, therefore, understand the challenges that Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) face as they run their businesses. President Hakainde Hichilema has made some promises to fix these challenges in this area by creating a ministry which aims to address these challenges. I can only hope that these are promises he intends to keep. Not the broken ones like selling the Presidential Jet.


Mr Chaatila: You are talking to yourself.


Mr Twasa: Madam Speaker, I thank the people of Kasenengwa for trusting me with a mandate to bring development and foster peace, progress, unity, and accountability. I would like to highlight the key developmental areas that I will focus on while I am here on behalf of my fellow men, women, and children of Kasenengwa.


Madam Speaker, on education, we have nearly 35,000 farmers of maize and 16,000 in soya beans production in Kasenengwa. We expect inputs to be delivered on time.


Madam Speaker, on education, Kasenengwa is a vast area, and we only have one boarding school. It is important that we build two other boarding schools, one in Senior Chief Nzamane’s chiefdom and another in Chief Misholo’s chiefdom. We will try hard to lobby for that.


Madam Speaker, on healthcare, we are grateful to the Patriotic Front (PF) Government for allocating two mini district hospitals in Kasenengwa. One is at 95 per cent, while the other one, construction is about to start. I, therefore, make an earnest appeal to the UPND Government to make sure that this promise to the people of Kasenengwa is fulfilled otherwise the people of Kasenengwa are promising that they will never see the 12,000 votes come 2026, if this is not delivered.


Hon. UPND Members: Question!


Mr Twasa: Madam Speaker, on road infrastructure, we have the notorious Msolo and Chongo roads that need serious upgrading. Due to the Msolo Road the Opposition, United Party for National Development (UPND) then, got 12,000 votes. If this road is not worked on, the 12,000 votes will go back to the PF or indeed another political party. Take note of this.


Madam Speaker, on water, sanitation, and hygiene, we hope to drill more boreholes and we will lobby the relevant ministry to support us in this area.


Madam Speaker with these remarks, I thank you so much since time is not with me.


Mr Lubozha (Chifubu): Madam Speaker, I express my profound gratitude for the privilege of delivering my maiden speech in this aristocratic and distinguished House.

Madam Speaker, I stand here, firstly, to express and extend my felicitations and congratulations to you on your election as the first ever female Speaker of this distinguished House. I will be failing in duty if I do not extend similar congratulations to your two deputies.


Madam Speaker, allow me also to thank the United Party for National Development (UPND) party and leadership for the confidence they expressed in me to give me an opportunity to stand as a Member of Parliament. I would want to thank the National Management Committee, the provincial committee, the district committee, constituency committee, and the ward officials for the role they played from the time of my adoption, election, and up to the time I was declared as a winner in Chifubu Parliamentary Constituency. I thank all of them.


Madam Speaker, I also thank my family, my wife, Catherine, my children, Prince, Lukomo, Misekelwa, Mapalo, and Joshua for the support that they gave me during this trying period. I describe it as a trying period because of the brutality that surrounded the election time perpetuated by the brutal regime that has fallen.


Hon. UPND Members: Hear, hear!


Mr Lubozha: Madam Speaker, I once again inform you that I am coming from a very special constituency that carries the iconic and historical background in the politics of our nation. Chifubu Parliamentary Constituency stands out to be a special constituency amongst the 156 constituencies across the country. We are the only constituency that produced a Member of Parliament, who later became a Vice-President and President of the Republic of Zambia, in the name of Levy Patrick Mwanawasa, may his soul rest in peace. Chifubu Parliamentary Constituency, in the same year, also produced a first lady by the name of Mama Vera Chiluba. So, you can see the rich history that surrounds this constituency.


Madam Speaker, we continued on the historical trajectory, in the 2021 elections, Chifubu Constituency ushered in Lloyd Lubozha as a Member of Parliament on the UPND ticket who is the first Member of Parliament for Chifubu for the UPND in the history and existence of the party for twenty-three years. This is a history to reckon with.

Madam Speaker, once again, I inform you that Chifubu Parliamentary Constituency has so many challenges: Number one, the roads. On the road network, we have the economic road called Ndola/Mufulira Road. The people of Chifubu are demanding answers as to why this economic road has not been worked on. The PF regime tendered this road, and the contractor was picked, by the name of Nyatsi, who has done nothing for the past three years on the Ndola/Mufulira Road. If you go there, it is in a deplorable condition. So, the people of Chifubu are demanding answers as to why this road has not been done. An inquiry should be instituted so that the culprit in the fallen regime must be brought to book for making the people of my constituency suffer excruciatingly.


Madam Speaker, I also wish to inform you that township roads have not been worked on. Chifubu Parliamentary Constituency has not benefited from the road infrastructural programme that was implemented by the PF Government. Roads such as Dambo Road, running from the mosque up to the Mitenda/Kaniki Road. We also have Lumumba Road, Tolola Road, Chipoko Tamayamba Road, and Pamodzi Road. Overspill Road is a sorry site. As the rainy season comes, all roads will be impassable in the Overspill Area. For this reason, we are saying the bad roads have been caused as a result of recklessness of the past regime. I have the confidence that with the coming in of the visionary leader at the helm of the UPND administration, we are going to transform Chifubu into an ultra-modern constituency.


Madam Speaker, I stand here as a very sad person because when I look at one of the seven wards in my constituency, Kaniki Ward, it has been delinked from the rest of the country. I hope the hon. Minister of Defence and the hon. The Minister of Home Affairs and Internal Security are in the House listening. I want them to quickly rectify this situation in Kaniki because it is not right to dehumanise and allow the people of Kaniki in Chifubu Parliamentary Constituency to suffer the way they are suffering. They have put up a roadblock and the people of Kaniki Ward are not allowed to buy mealie meal or transport it to be sold in Kaniki. They have to travel almost 10 km to 15 km to go and buy mealie meal. They will also have to register at a certain roadblock which has been left by the brutal regime of the Patriotic Front (PF).


Madam Speaker, my humble appeal to the hon. Minister of Defence is that the Zambia National Service (ZNC) who are put there, not later than this week, must be removed in order to reunite Kaniki Ward to the rest of the country so that the people there can also start enjoying life just like many other people are doing in the rest of the constituency and other constituencies.


Madam Speaker, I also wish to inform you that from the time an agreement was signed between the PF Government and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Government to regularise and open up the Sakanya Border, our colleagues from the DRC have put up infrastructure and on the Zambian side, there is nothing that is happening. I have the confidence that the hon. Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Urban Development and other line ministries will move in quickly so that we can set up the infrastructure and open up the Kaniki/Sakanya Border. This will enhance trade with the DRC. This is also going to create employment and push up business in Chifubu Parliamentary Constituency.


Madam Speaker, let me talk about health. I wish to inform this House that I stand here disappointed, surprised, startled, mystified, and bewildered that the former Minister of Health stood on the Floor of this House and bragged that he had built seventy-six health posts in his constituency. From independence, Chifubu Parliamentary Constituency has only five clinics. There is not even a first level hospital. This shows how unfairly the national cake was shared. It is my humble appeal that the new administration will equalise the distribution of the national cake.


Madam Speaker, we also need secondary schools to be built in my constituency. The system that has been there is to upgrade primary schools and improving on the deficit. So, we have the confidence that with the coming in of the UPND Government, headed by a visionary leader, Mr Hakainde Hichilema, umwaume pa baume, is going to do something to improve the infrastructure in Chifubu Parliamentary Constituency so that our people can have enough learning materials in most of the schools.


Madam Speaker, unemployment levels in Chifubu are very high because the PF Government neglected the people of Chifubu. Therefore, at this stage the UPND must come in strongly to give empowerment to the people of Chifubu and resuscitate the companies that have been closed in the industrial area of Ndola so as to create employment. I have the confidence that the UPND Government is going to help the people of Chifubu.


Madam Speaker: Order!


The hon. Member’s time expired.


Mr Simutowe (Mbala): Madam Speaker, I thank you for according me this opportunity to present my first speech in this august House.


Madam Speaker, allow me to begin by congratulating His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Hakainde Hichilema of the United Party for National Development (UPND), on his election as the Seventh President of our country, Zambia. I wish to congratulate Her Honour the Vice-President, Mrs Mutale Nalumango for her well-deserved victory. Allow me to also congratulate you on your election as the first female Speaker of the National Assembly and your two deputies. Allow me to congratulate all hon. Members from all walks of Zambia for making it to the House.


Madam Speaker, allow me to congratulate the people of Mbala for electing me as their Member of Parliament, I, being the first hon. Member of Parliament under the UPND. Allow me to thank my dear wife, Mrs Jean Nanyangwe Simutowe, for her unwavering support throughout my campaign. Allow me to also thank my family, including my children led by Dr Catious Salifyanji Simutowe, my brothers and sisters led by Amos Simutowe, Mpulungu District Education Board Secretary (DEBS), and all uncles and nieces for their support during and after my campaign. I thank the National Management Committee, the provincial management committee, led by Victor Sinkala, the district executive committee, led by Madam Annie Namonga, Mrs Pavlos, and the constituency team led by Mr Chiwaya. I also thank the branches in all the nine wards of the constituency.  


Madam Speaker, I also wish to thank my missionary Pastor, Grant Schelfer at Mbala Baptist Church and elders and members of my local church in Mbala.


Madam Speaker, let me now comment on some challenges we have experienced together in Mbala Parliamentary Constituency.


Madam Speaker, as my area of interest, Mbala has forty-two General Certificate of Education (GCE) centres, sixty-nine primary schools, nineteen secondary schools, fourteen special education units, and one grant aided college of education. These education faculties have poor infrastructure, few teachers, and very little learning materials which have contributed to the poor standards of the education provision. It is, therefore, in my vision to create a formidable team in order to raise the standards in the education sector.


Madam Speaker, I wish to inform you that Mbala is the main producer of beans, maize, and groundnuts. However, farmers have endured bad Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) policies to the extent that production has been heavily compromised. It is for this reason that God has raised me, through the able leadership of His Excellency the President, Mr Hakainde Hichilema, to develop good agriculture policies to enable production and create jobs for our youths in Mbala and Zambia, as a whole.


Madam Speaker, it is a well-known fact that Mbala is not an exception in recognising the youths who raised their hands high to kick out corruption, injustice, and the ruthless Government by the previous regime. It is, therefore, evident that the New Dawn Government has given fresh hope to the youths and heard their voice in governance issues today. We now have an obligation to create a platform where youths can thrive and be fully utilised to make a meaningful living through their entrepreneurial skills. The youths of Mbala District are very happy and excited with the prospects that have come with the creation of the Ministry of Small and Medium Enterprise Development. It will be of great of benefit in terms of youth empowerment and job creation. This move by the President will go a long way in helping the country attain sustainable development.


Madam Speaker, I also wish to note that Mbala has an incomplete youth skills training centre, which was started using taxpayers’ money by the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) regime. It is my desire and hope that the training centre is completed within the shortest period of time.


Madam Speaker, Mbala is home to a good number of tourist attractions, such as the great Kalambo Falls, Moto Moto Museum and Nsunzu Mountain. I wish to invite you to Mbala, with your team, to come and witness these wonderful tourist attractions. It is in my vision to work with various stakeholders to improve the road network and other relevant infrastructure at these sites in order to generate revenue for our country.


Madam Speaker, I also wish to improve the Zombe Border Post, which links our country with Tanzania. Once this is done, it will generate revenue for our country and definitely improve the lives of our youths in Mbala, coupled with improving township roads, markets and youth empowerment.


Madam Speaker, let me now comment on the President’s Speech.


Madam Speaker, allow me now –


Madam Speaker: Order!


Hon. Member, the Motion on the President’s Speech has already been closed. So, you just concentrate on your maiden speech.


Mr Simutowe: In that case, thank you, Madam Speaker.


Mr P. Phiri (Mkaika): Madam Speaker, thank you for this opportunity. Allow me to begin with thanking the people who helped me to emerge victorious as the Member of Parliament for Mkaika Parliamentary Constituency in the just ended general elections.


Madam Speaker, first and foremost, I wish to thank the former President, Dr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, for adopting me to contest the Mkaika seat under the Patriotic Front (PF). I also thank the party officials at national, provincial, district, constituency and ward levels for the support rendered to me. I would be failing in my duty if I do not recognise the immense contribution rendered by my family, in particular my wife, Olipa, and my four children, Stella, Mekelani, Esnart and Jessie, for the support and encouragement throughout the campaign period. May I also take this opportunity to thank the three chiefs in Katete, Chieftainess Sikawaza, Chief Mbang’ombe and Chief Katumba, all the church leaders and all the people in Mkaika Parliamentary Constituency. I salute them and I will make sure I perform my duties to the best of my ability.


Madam Speaker, allow me to appreciate the former President, Dr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, and his administration for the massive development in all the sectors that the country witnessed. These include infrastructure development in the road sector and construction of health facilities around the country. In addition, many small scale farmers have benefitted from the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP), who in turn have contributed to the bumper harvest experienced in the last few years. In the energy sector, the construction and commissioning of the Lower Kafue Gorge Power Station has even contributed to ending load shedding in the country.


Madam Speaker, Mkaika Parliamentary Constituency is still lagging behind in terms of development. The road network is bad, especially the feeder roads. These include Chinkombe, Chimutende, Mflamukoko and Matunga, just to mention a few. We also have the Chanida Road, which is an economic road. This road is currently being worked on by a contractor by the name of Buildcon Investments Limited. The works are going on well, although the pace is very slow. We are appealing to the Ministry of Infrastructure, Housing and Urban Development to make sure everything is given in terms of finances so that works on this road can be expedited.


Madam Speaker, the feeder roads in Mkaika Parliamentary Constituency need urgent attention because if they are not attended to, most of them might become impassable, more especially during the rainy season. May I also take this opportunity to talk about the Great East Road, especially the stretch from Lusaka to Luangwa. This road has two toll plazas and my appeal is that the Government hastens or quickens the mending of the potholes on this road. This is a very busy road and we have witnessed many accidents on this road. I am appealing to the hon. Minister in-charge to make sure this road is looked into.


Madam Speaker, access to clean drinking water remains a very big challenge in Mkaika Parliamentary Constituency. There is a need to put up more boreholes and some dams. Right now, the situation is bad, more especially in terms of water for animals. Some families or villagers use buckets just to give some water to animals, which is really bad. I appeal to the New Dawn Government to quickly construct some dams within the constituency, so that water is not a problem for both people and animals.


Madam Speaker, although there has been some improvement in the health sector in infrastructure development, the shortage of drugs in hospitals and other health facilities remains a very big challenge in Katete. People are just given prescriptions to buy drugs in drug stores. My appeal to the Government is that, please, let us put life first and make sure that drugs are available in hospitals.


Madam Speaker, there are some stalled projects in Katete, the main ones being the police station, which is at 40 or 50 per cent completion point, and the office block for obtaining National Registration Cards (NRCs), which is around the 80 per cent completion point. I appeal to the Government to consider completing these projects because works have stalled.


Madam Speaker, economically, people in Katete are farmers and they produce many crops such as beans, soya beans, maize and the like. My heart bleeds when these crops are exported in their raw form to different parts of the country and beyond. What we need in Katete are some industries so that they add value to these crops. By so doing, we shall create jobs for the youths.


Madam Speaker, the United Party for National Development (UPND) promised free education and, yesterday, one of the people in my constituency, whose daughter had been chased from school and needs some money for school fees, called me. He was asking me what he should do because there were some rumours that this time around parents are not going to pay school fees.


So, I told him to hold on a bit because the Government has not yet given an official notice. Therefore, I appeal to the UPND Government to make the pronouncement clear because people out there heard the promise that was made. So, the Government should make this clear to the people in the country and Mkaika in particular, so that their children can freely go to school without any disturbances. Our colleagues promised many things and people are asking when free education will be implemented.


Madam Speaker, the other promise that was made regards the reduction of the price of fertiliser from K750 to K250. The rains are just near the corner and people are wondering because even the distribution of inputs under the Fertiliser Input Support Programme (FISP) has delayed. The promises that our colleagues made to the people are what led them to sit on the right side of the House. So, I urge them to come up with measures or a policy that will allow agro dealers to reduce the price of fertiliser to K250.


Madam Speaker: Order!


The hon. Member’s time expired.







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


Question put and agreed to.




The House adjourned at 1622 hours until 0900 hours on Friday, 1stOctober, 2021.