By BUUMBA CHIMBULU
GOVERNMENT should raise the shareholding level and compel foreign investors to partners with locals as they set up an investment in Zambia.
The state should raise the shareholding at least 45 percent to ensure that wealth remains in the country.
This is according to the Federation of Small Scale Mining Associated of Zambia (FSSMAZ) president, Joseph Mwansa.
Pastor Mwansa stressed the need for Government to raise the percentage shareholding to at least 40 to 45 percent from the current 25 percent.
He indicated that the current 25 percent too low as most foreign investors took advantage of the situation to armtwist Government.
He cited the development at Konkola Copper Mine (KCM) and Mopani to be among companies taking advantage of the low shareholding by locals.
“The behaviour of KCM and Mopani is a lesson to us as Zambians, whenever these companies make huge profits they start treating us in unacceptable manner. A good mining policy will help us sustain the Zambian economy as mining is the only lifeline for our country,” Pastor Mwansa said in an interview.
Pastor Mwansa also urged Government to consider small scale miners, who currently needed machinery, as a future economic tool.
He stressed the need for Government to assist the small scale miners with the necessary tools for them to start bringing in foreign exchange in Zambia.
“The Government should invest a lot in the ministry of mines. Ministry of Mines is one of the list funded ministries yet it is the ministry that brings money in this country through mining sector which employs a lot of Zambians.
“We have brilliant men and women at the ministry in different departments who can change our nation if they were motivates,” Pastor Mwansa said.
Pastor Mwansa complained that there were no mining inspections due to lack of enough funding for the Ministry of Mines.
He further complained that there were some mining right holders who were supposed to be conducting exploration but instead conducted actual mining because they were not being inspected.
Pastor Mwansa also observed the need for the Ministry of Mines to have planning on them it could handle gold.
He warned that Zambia would not benefit from gold without proper planning.
By BUUMBA CHIMBULU