By ROGERS KALERO
GOVERNMENT will ensure that Zambians benefit from the mining companies through meaningful contracts, corporate social responsibility and jobs given to Zambians.
Home Affairs Minister Stephen Kampyongo said Government was concerned that mining companies were in the habit of giving contracts to foreigners at the expense of local contractors and suppliers.
Mr Kampyongo was speaking yesterday when he met management at Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) in Chingola.
Mr. Kampyongo is leading a team of ministers and MPs on a tour of duty of mines to talk to the owners of companies on the importance of Zambians benefitting from the mining industry.
He said that President Edgar Lungu had sent them to talk to mining companies to ensure that Zambians benefitted from their mineral resources.
“As MPs and ministers, we are here to deliver the message from President Lungu to ensure that Zambians benefit from their own resources through meaningful contracts and jobs.
“President Lungu has been concerned about mining companies not giving contracts to local suppliers and contractors,” Mr Kampyongo said.
Mr Kampyongo, who is in the company of mines minister Richard Musukwa, Copperbelt Minister Japhen Mwakalombe, National Planning Minister Alexander Chiteme, Presidential Affairs Minister Freedom Sikazwe, and Wusakile MP Pavyuma Kalobo, said the meeting with mining companies was not a mere talking show, but would be followed to ensure that discussions were implemented.
He said government would not entertain investors who did not want Zambians to benefit from investments coming to the country.
“The issue of ensuring that Zambians benefit from the mines is now being scaled up. This is not a mere talking show. We will follow it up,” he said.
And Mr Musukwa told KCM management to ensure that whatever the company was doing had the interest of the workers and Zambians in general.
Meanwhile, KCM chief executive officer Steven Din said his company would always work towards the interest of the workers and the residents of Chingola.
Mr. Din said the meeting they had with the ministers had brought out a number of issues which needed to be addressed.