By MAIMBO MWEEMBA
Caritas Zambia Chingola Coordinator Eugene Mulenga has called on Zambians to be level headed in dealing with facts surrounding Konkola Copper Mines and the mining industry in the country.
Mr Mulenga said that Zambians have to look at the current status of KCM with realistic facts as issues of Vedanta wanting to return arise.
He said Vedanta Resources have shown willingness to return and abide by the condition set for their return.
“I know most people are very emotional about this issue owing to a number of reasons especially with our previous experiences with Vedanta resources at KCM, questions maybe asked; Do we have the easier way out of this situation considering assert is being contested?, who would show interest in the assert under litigation? Who is the legal owner of the assert and who would have the final say should a new buyer be found? Do we have time to worst/ delay investment in the mines considering the Current state of the mine?’’ he questioned.
And Mr Mulenga said now is time to set aside the different emotions and politics and be objective in looking at the all issues, further questioning what the country has achieved since the mine was placed under liquidation aside from benefiting cadres, politically exposed individuals and the politicians.
He also acknowledged KCM employees and managements’ efforts in trying to manage operations under very difficult conditions.
Mr Mulenga said conditions such as a political intimidating atmosphere by and large affected many decisions, and lack of capital injection did not make KCM management’s work easier.
“With whatever experience we had with Vedanta, where was the government? Do you think the investor can behave in a certain way if there is transparency and no corruption in government?
Mr Mulenga has since urged government to improve the mineral monitoring policy to curtail tax avoidance tactics from the multinational corporations
He also said that government needs to make sure that there is a fair return to the national Treasury that will benefit the Zambian people.
“We can go on but right now we have a mine to save and jobs to save, government is there to set conditions and we should have confidence in our system,” he said.