COPPERBELT Minister Mwenye Musenge must not involve President Edgar Lungu in the China Copper Mine controversy, Copperbelt Small-Scale Miners Association president Albert Kabungo has warned.
The President , he said, had no role to play in the conflict over the mines which had been going on for many years.
It was therefore wrong, Mr. Kabungo said for Mr. Musenge to drag the name of President Lungu in the wrangles whose origins were very well known.
“We want to meet the President and explain to him the genesis of this problem because Mr. Musenge has not been sincere in the manner he has been handling the matter. Mr. Musenge should realise that the route he has taken of siding with one investor is creating division in the area. The current situation can bleed anarchy in the area,” he said.
He said it was sad that Mr. Musenge had pushed President Lungu into the matter by suggesting that some companies had bankrolled the campaigns for him, when it was not true.
He said the wrangles between the China Copper Mines, Tikumbe and the Mimbula mines Consortium was about the failure by the Chinese Copper Mines to adhere to the rules that govern the mining sector in the country.
It was shocking, he said, that Mr. Musenge respected a foreign company more instead of supporting the local initiative to work with other interested investors in developing Zambia particularly the Chingola Mine.
Mr. Kabungo said the minister was aware about the shortcomings of CCM with regards to respect of human life as the mine was dumping chemicals and other effluents in the two rivers whose water was being used by locals for drinking and purposes.
“Mr. Musenge should have acted like a father for all warring parties rather than supporting one individual even where he has seen that things are not ok. He is siding with only one company leaving out other mining companies as if they don’t exist,
“We are saying he should have consulted all stakeholders rather than going the route he has taken,” said Mr. Kabungo who is also the major shareholder in Mimbula Consortium.
He said CCM was not truthful in their conduct and hence seeking protection from the Minister.
Mr. Kabungo said it was shocking that despite the matter being fully resolved by Mines Minister Christopher Yaluma, Mr. Musenge had allegedly become the spokesperson for CCM.
Among those that spoke towere Johny Botes a consultant and investor in Tikumbe Minwe and Edith Nkhoma a board member of Mimbula Mine who expressed disappointment with Mr. Musenge’s involvement in the matter when he was not the minister of mines.