The republican President of Zambia Edgar Lungu says the citizens and the corporate world must not completely rely on the country’s economy from the current copper mining dominated mono-economy but look to other economic sectors.
President Lungu says in this new dispensation the country must promote and sustain other aspects of the economy to become one of the main drivers of the economic programme.
“In order to sustain our country’s industrialization efforts, we must continue to develop by supporting infrastructure such as feeder roads, railways, waterways and begin to generate energy from other potential sources while preserving the environment and minimizing the cost of doing business.”
“The first point of investment in this democratic enterprise must, as of necessity, begin with investing in the people of Zambia and on my many trips around the country, during my campaigns, I discovered a steel and iron project embarked upon by a few Zambians in the central part of the country,” Mr Lungu observed.
President Lungu said the compatriots, against all odds, have established an iron and steel plant in Kafue town which is located in Lusaka province. He says the project embarked by the Zambians was to encourage such homegrown industries to thrive and hence the small town of Kafue has been declared an iron and steel facility economic zone for the town to grow the facility into a centre of excellence for local industries.
The economic facility zone is meant to induce the revamping of the economic status of Kafue and spearhead the industrialisation programme for Zambia as a whole.
President Lungu says his administration plans to introduce an ultra-modern radar-based technology to help control reckless behaviour on the Zambian roads in order to curb the ever increasing traffic accidents. He said the road traffic enforcement agencies will work closely with his office to install this technology because life no must be not lost needlessly on the roads.
President Lungu said this in Lusaka on August 15th 2016 when he was sworn in as the sixth Republican President by the country’s Chief Justice Ireene Mambilima at a colourful inauguration ceremony held at the Heroes Stadium with the Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe who was the guest speaker on behalf of other African heads of states invited for the which was attended by the diplomatic corps and other important dignitaries.
He implored the Zambians to redouble their efforts at indigenizing investment in science and technology research, in development and in innovation.
“We must begin to strengthen the Zambian economy by making the transaction in the Zambian kwacha a reality in order to self-sustain our economy, we must first produce local, buy local and use local and then export more” President Lungu said.
The President added that the majority of the population in Zambia are predominantly youths and it is his desire to harness the potential the youths have to spur development for the country.
The youths need education and skills, they need proper healthcare system and be facilitated to effectively participate in the economy.
“The test of progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much, it is whether we provide enough for those who have little or nothing at all”. Mr Lungu said.
The Zambian President pledged that his administration will not leave anyone behind as every region of the country and all Zambians are entitled to receive the benefits of development for the next five years during his tenure of office.
Prosperity for all cannot be achieved in an acrimonious environment, without peace, there can be no development with the absence of harmony, there can be no stability in the nation as it is only in a peaceful environment that the nation can be built.
He said the elected ruling Patriotic Front Government will remain focused on facilitating a conducive business and investment climate to ensure a private sector led development and where private sector participation will not be realized at the desired rate, Government will apply a mix of policy and legislative interventions aimed at enhancing development.
“Government will also not hesitate to take appropriate measures where developmental efforts are being impeded by factors that affect delivery of public goods and some of these may include making interventions on land encroachments in development pathways,” says President Lungu.
The newly elected President says to further accelerate development efforts, parastatal companies will through the Industrial Development Cooperation (IDC) be required to take the lead where private sector participation is not being fully realized.
He has called upon all Zambians to inculcate a culture of hard work within themselves, sacrifice and endurance in the quest to achieve personal ambitions and engaging in corruption cannot be a substitute to the pride that comes from personal effort and determination to achieve prosperity.
“It is against this background that I would like to pay glowing tribute to all our political opponents for the well- fought battle as we have nothing against one-another but instead we only have a common agenda and that is to develop this great nation of Zambia,” says President Lungu.
The head of state applauded the Zambians for exhibiting the maturity and collective wisdom, by choosing peace during the rather prolonged election process despite recording little pockets of hostility but isolated, nevertheless even these isolated acts of hooliganism are a bloat on the image of the country and they must be totally banished.
“Those acts of violence are a scar on the conscience of the nation we will act decisively to forestall such behavior in this regard, I will be appointing a commission of inquiry to establish the cause and perpetrators of the post-election violence so that the nation can learn from such mistakes” echoed President Lungu.
The Zambian President commended the Police Service and other security wings for maintaining peace, law and order before, during and after the elections even under extreme pressure and provocation.
“When the election season is over, there should be no winners and losers but, on my part, I have learnt that there is no time and latitude to settle old scores, we have work to do as it is our duty as citizens of mother Zambia to acknowledge that we are on this journey together, as guided by our national motto: “One Zambia, One nation”, emphasized President Lungu.
Siabana Kelvin in Kitwe (Zambia)