KCM, MOPANI, LET TO ROT BY GOVERNMENT SO THAT THEY CAN BE GIVEN AWAY-MWAMBA
Lusaka-Sunday 5th February 2023
Patriotic Front Presidential Candidate, Amb. Emmanuel Mwamba has charged that Government’s neglect of Mopani Copper Mines and Konkola Copper Mines was deliberate to attempt to degrade the mine assets and create acute social desperation on the Copperbelt so that the mines could be given away to investors for a song.
Speaking on Prime Television’s “Matters Arising”, Amb. Mwamba said government has been quick to find millions of dollars to clear outstanding debts such as owed to Maamba Collieries, Copperbelt Energy Company and Mozambique but demonstrate reluctance to promote production at the two mines.
He said this is a clear ploy to degrade the mine assets and create social and economic desperation for the people on the Copperbelt.
He urged Government to find resources to meet copper production targets and take advantage of high copper prices currently prevailing.
He called on President Hakainde Hichilema to resolve the crisis on the two mines so that they return to commercial production.
Mr. Mwamba said the mines were wholly owned by Government and it was easier to make decisions around investment and securing an equity partner.
And Mr. Mwamba rejected assertions that Vedanta Mineral Reapurces should be allowed back to own KCM. He said records show that Vedanta was a bad investor who wilfuuly declared fake losses, failed to pay taxes, polluted rivers and degraded the mine assets.
He said VEDANTA failed to develop Konkola Deep Mine which has known copper reserves worth over $200billion but chose to make quick profits by importing concentrates from the Democratic Republic Congo.
He called on President Hichilema to make decisions that would benefit the country beyond his presidential terms.
He said ZCCM-IH must hold equity in all large scale mines including Lumwana and Kalumbila for the country to have meaningful benefit from its mineral resources.