“Presidential Commitment”

… Hichilema vows to unscrupulous looters of borrowed funds for national development and enriched themselves leaving the national coffers empty

By Francis Maingaila
Kapiri mposhi, Zambia24 (21-05-2024) –
In a resolute address in Kapiri Mposhi District of Central Province, President Hakainde Hichilema of Zambia has vowed to recoup all misappropriated borrowed funds from the previous administration, signaling a crackdown on corruption that has left the nation burdened with crippling debt.

President Hichilema, speaking at the commissioning of the US$650 million Lusaka-Ndola dual carriageway road project, outlined his administration’s commitment to retrieving embezzled funds and redirecting them towards critical developmental initiatives, particularly infrastructure projects aimed at fostering economic growth.

President Hichilema pledged accountability in governance, promising to investigate and recover misappropriated funds to bolster public confidence.

He highlighted efforts to empower the next generation through increased student enrollment and essential resource provision.

Furthermore, he disclosed ambitious plans to overhaul the TAZARA railway line, aiming to bolster regional connectivity and trade.

He pledged to involve local communities in infrastructure projects to foster economic growth and empowerment.

With a commitment to further infrastructure development, President Hichilema recognized the pivotal role of robust road networks in driving economic growth across vital sectors.

He expressed optimism for Zambia’s future, citing the nation’s resolve to overcome challenges and realize prosperity for all its citizens.

Highlighting the urgency of the matter, President Hichilema declared his intention to introduce a motion to Cabinet, urging swift action and parliamentary support in the pursuit of justice and financial accountability.

“Our mandate is clear: to recover every cent that rightfully belongs to the Zambian people,” stated President Hichilema, underscoring his determination to dismantle entrenched corruption networks and restore transparency in government finances.

The President emphasized the need for transparency and accountability in the utilization of borrowed funds, promising enhanced oversight mechanisms to prevent future financial mismanagement.

“We owe it to the citizens of Zambia to uncover the truth behind the squandering of public resources and ensure that those responsible are held accountable,” asserted President Hichilema.

Drawing attention to the dilapidated state of Zambia’s infrastructure, President Hichilema reaffirmed his administration’s commitment to channeling recovered funds towards essential projects, such as road construction, to stimulate economic development and improve livelihoods across the nation.

In a rallying call to the Zambian populace, President Hichilema urged unity and resilience in the face of divisive forces seeking to derail progress, urging citizens to prioritize national development over partisan interests.

“The path to prosperity demands unity, vigilance, and unwavering commitment to the common good,” remarked President Hichilema, urging Zambians to reject discord and embrace the collective pursuit of a brighter future.

As construction on the Lusaka-Ndola dual carriageway gathers momentum, President Hichilema expressed optimism about its transformative impact on transportation infrastructure, facilitating seamless movement of goods, services, and people both domestically and internationally.

President Hichilema reaffirmed his administration’s unwavering dedication to upholding the principles of good governance, promising a new era of accountability, integrity, and inclusive development for all Zambians.

President Hichilema recently launched the construction of the Ndola-Lusaka dual carriageway, a significant milestone celebrated for its potential to enhance connectivity and transportation efficiency.

At the inauguration ceremony, President Hichilema expressed gratitude to local leaders, partners, and communities for their support, highlighting the importance of proactive communication and cooperation in sustainable development.

He praised the resilience of the business community, farmers, and residents of Central Province and Kabiri, emphasizing their crucial role in advancing the nation’s developmental goals.

Additionally, he acknowledged the media’s role in facilitating dialogue and understanding, urging responsible journalism to shape public discourse positively.

President Hichilema shared personal memories of Kapirimposhi, underscoring its influence on his journey and symbolizing Zambia’s diverse communities’ potential.

He encouraged youth to embrace entry-level job opportunities, emphasizing perseverance and hard work as essential for success.

During the ceremony, he announced an upcoming infrastructure project involving the construction of the Ndola-Lusaka road with separate lanes designated for travel to Lusaka and the Copper Belt.

This initiative aims to improve connectivity, transportation efficiency, and safety along the vital corridor.

President Hichilema highlighted the ruling UPND’s dedication to national progress over the past 23 years, particularly emphasizing its role in transformative projects like the Ndola-Lusaka Carriage Road Highway.

He stressed the importance of individual and collective growth for societal advancement.

The president emphasized the highway’s significance in facilitating regional and global trade flows, positioning Zambia as a key player in the African market.

He advocated for prioritizing investment expenditure over consumption expenditure to lay the foundation for sustainable development and long-term prosperity.

President Hichilema praised his administration’s infrastructure achievements and fiscal responsibility, citing cost savings of over $1.2 billion on a major road project.

He emphasized the new road’s expected benefits, including improved business efficiency and citizen welfare, highlighting the government’s commitment to responsible leadership.

He renewed a call for national unity and collaboration, emphasizing the importance of supporting initiatives contributing to the country’s progress.

Against a backdrop of rising tensions, he emphasized peace and stability as essential for Zambia’s advancement.

Charles Milupi Minister of Infrastructure and Development celebrated the groundbreaking ceremony for the Ndola-Lusaka Dual Carriageway construction, labeling it a long-awaited achievement.

He highlighted the government’s dedication to fulfilling its promises, emphasizing three main priorities: national unity, effective governance through cabinet appointments, and infrastructure development.

Milupi pointed to the ongoing project as evidence of progress. He shared an anecdote about children’s aspirations, underlining the importance of credibility and trust in leadership.

Milupi provided project details, including scope, financing, and cost breakdown, highlighting the use of Public-Private Partnership (PPP) financing and comparing costs and progress to previous administrations.

“The project, financed through a PPP model, won’t require government spending during construction but will generate revenues and taxes in the operational phase,” he stated

“This approach promises reduced travel times, improved safety, and the creation of around 3000 direct jobs, benefiting sectors like education, health, and housing. Local contractors will manage sites, empowering communities and businesses,” he added.

PPP infrastructure projects extend beyond roads, reflecting the government’s commitment to efficient public services across sectors. The project’s commencement underscores the government’s dedication to development and meeting international standards.

Milupi reiterated the commitment to delivering high-quality infrastructure projects within budget and on time, citing past successes.

He outlined project components, including road construction, bridges, and maintenance, emphasizing benefits for communities and businesses.

Collaboration with businesses and communities is crucial, with efforts to minimize disruptions and maximize local benefits.

Milupi discussed employment opportunities and economic benefits, urging stakeholder flexibility and cooperation.

Plans for project management and maintenance ensure long-term sustainability and benefits for residents. Government initiatives address housing and infrastructure needs, promising continued progress and project expansion.

Milupi acknowledged the president’s vision for development, expressing determination to achieve further successes in infrastructure, ensuring a brighter future for Zambia.

President’s Efforts Praised Amid Calls for Continued Action

Princess Kasune, the Minister of Central Province, and Stanley Kakubo, Member of Parliament for Kapirimposhi, have lauded the President for his dedicated work in their respective regions.

The remarks not only highlighted the critical need for infrastructure improvements and educational support, echoing sentiments shared by many citizens across the nation but also underscored the need for sustained efforts to address the nation’s challenges and ensure a brighter future for all citizens.

Princess Kasune emphasized the historical significance of the President’s initiatives, citing the long-standing challenges faced by the region.

She recounted a tragic incident at her alma mater, where a promising graduate lost his life due to poor road conditions, underscoring the urgent need for infrastructure upgrades.

Kasune urged the President to continue his efforts with the resolve of a caring father and an effective leader, highlighting various areas in Central Province where change is desperately needed.

Stanley Kakubo expressed gratitude for the President’s work over the past two years, particularly in the realm of education and youth employment.

He acknowledged the challenges faced by the administration but urged the President to remain resolute in his endeavors.

Kakubo’s remarks reflected a sentiment of appreciation for the positive impact the President’s initiatives have had on the community, especially in providing opportunities for the younger generation.

Both leaders called on the President to take further action, emphasizing the importance of continued engagement and investment in critical areas such as infrastructure and education.

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