North Western Province Minister Nathaniel Mubukwanu was quoted on Qfm as saying that suggestions that the province is not getting a fair share from the mineral wealth it is endowed with are not true. He further stressed that if money generated from certain parts of the country is meant for that particular area alone, government will have nowhere to get money to develop other parts of the country which do not have mines.
This is an utter insult to the people of North Western Province from a very arrogant and probably ignorant government official, and the sooner he keeps quite the better! As if sidelining folks from the area in appointments to key government positions wasn’t enough, the PF government that Mubukwanu is part of has further ignored the province in its development agenda. One doesn’t have to be a rocket scientist to comprehend that while universities, colleges, roads and government complexes are coming up in other provinces, particularly in Northern and Muchinga provinces, North Western Province remains lagging far much behind like buttocks as one prominent citizen once stated!
When mining was at its peak on the Copperbelt, a huge chunk of revenue generated from the sale of minerals was ploughed back in the area before other provinces could benefit. This is why at one time the Copperbelt had the best roads and good number of schools, colleges and sports facilities. Now compare this to North Western Province today; there is absolutely nothing on the ground to account for the tonnages of minerals that are being extracted from the bowels of our soil every day. If illustrious sons of the soil such as Humphrey Mulemba, John Kalenga and Benny Tetamashimba were to be brought back from the dead, they would be shocked at the level of stagnation the province is still bogged in – derelict government buildings, makeshift markets and impassable roads.
The sad state of affairs in our province was succinctly put into context by His royal highness Chief Ntambo of the Lunda people of Mwinilunga at a recent Road Development Agency presentation. After listening to RDA director Bernard Chiwala brag about a number of roads the agency is undertaking in certain, nay, selected parts of the country, Chief Ntambo couldn’t help but complain, “I will go back to the people of North Western Province and tell them that there is a lot happening elsewhere in terms of road projects and not this place. Our roads are in a deplorable state.”
What sin have the people of this great province committed to deserve this kind of treatment? Is it because the province did not overwhelmingly vote for PF or simply because we are deemed to be a meek people? Please do not mistake our God given attributes for weakness. We equally deserve a fair share of the national cake and not crumbs as Chiwala confirmed when he said there were a number of road projects that have been earmarked for construction such as Solwezi Kipushi, Kasempa Kaoma and Jimbe roads but only that they are still under design. This is a clear case of devouring all the choice meat and leaving only bones for us!
It’s quite ironical that this government doesn’t see it prudent to prioritize working on the roads in the province even when they fully understand the economical significance of the region to the nation as a whole?
I would further apportion part of the blame to our MPs, instead of being vocal in their demand for development in parliament, I guess they are busy enjoying T.bone steak and scotch whiskey at parliament motel!
In the eyes of the Lord, Zambia belongs to all of us; it doesn’t matter whether one is Chokwe, Bemba or Tonga we all deserve better and there is nothing treasonous about this!
Prince Mupasha Kaping’a
Lunda Royal Estalishment