Management at Konkola copper mines (KCM) has deregistered most of the local suppliers of goods and services and replaced them with Indian and Chinese.
The local suppliers have accused management of engaging other expatriates who have in turn terminated the suppliers’ contracts, a move which is feared will increase poverty levels in the small mining town of Chililabombwe.
Hannie, a Chinese owned firm was single sourced to do all the underground mining and heavy duty equipment hire to the exclusion of Zambian firms. Safety attire contract has been grabbed from a Zambian and given to an Indian supplier who is a friend to senior Indian officials in the company while the contract to supply all lime requirements has been given to Nelicart.
The local suppliers have accused some government officials of also benefitting from some of the shoddy dealings and have questioned the return of three officials who left the country alongside the former CEO Agarwal who dared late President Sata. Other company officials named in the scam are Somnath Ghosh, Ameta Het Shanker and a Mr. Purohit, all expatriates from India.