Chief Mpande against draft land law


Senior Chief Mpande of the Mambwe-Lungu people of Mbala district says the land law in the Draft Constitution is controversial and cannot be allowed to pass in Parliament.

The draft law on land suggests that all land would vest in the President.

Speaking in an interview with the Daily Nation yesterday, Chief Mpande said there was no way Zambians could accept such amendments to the land policy which was the only source of livelihood for most of the people, especially those living in rural areas.

The traditional ruler said taking away land from the chiefs could result in a lot of people losing out on the only natural resource available for their day to day living.

He said not even the members of Parliament could allow for the passing of the draft law on land as it would push people into increased poverty.

“I do not believe that even MPs would actually allow such kind of laws to be passed in our country.

“We all know that traditional rulers are the custodians of the land on behalf of millions of Zambians who rely on it for their survival, and if taken away, it would put a lot of people at a loss of their ony source of livelihood,” he said.

He said the State was already in possession of vast pieces of land which have remained under-utilised and that ideas to reposses land from chiefs would only cut off the Zambian people from owning land.

Chief Mpande, who is a mineral economist and University of Zambia School of Mines lecturer, said land should be preserved for the Zambian people, and better so in the hands of traditional leaders who were better adminstrators due to their proximity to the people.

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