Government says it will continue to engage foreign contractors on its projects as long as local contractors continued to under perform.

Works and Supply Minister Mike Mulongoti said some local contractors have on several occasions underperformed on projects much to the disappointment of the people who are direct beneficiaries of the projects.

Speaking during a meeting with contractors in Mansa , Mr. Mulongoti said government was in a hurry to develop the country and will therefore reprimand contractors for doing shoddy works at the expense of tax payers’ money.

He said government was ready to promote and support local contractors to build their capacity but that they should be responsible and committed to putting up quality work once awarded contracts.
The Minister said local contractors needed to change their work culture and build credibility in themselves to avoid shoddy works and ensure that government gets value for its money.

“I can assure you that government will not sit and watch you steal money from the people through your shoddy work and desertion of contracts. We will pursue you to ensure that you pay back the funds,” Mr. Mulongoti said.

The minister said he was disappointed with the bad workmanship of some contractors in Luapula Province noting that many contractors had abandoned construction projects despite being paid by government.

He directed the Provincial Roads Development Agency and Buildings Department to compile and submit a list of infrastructure that had been abandoned and names of contractors engaged for action.

“Local contractors cry that we prefer foreign contractors to them, this is because of the bad workmanship they have demonstrated and I can assure you we will continue to engage foreign contractors because what we need at the end of the day is a good product,” Mr. Mulongoti said.

Meanwhile, Luapula Province Minister Boniface Kawimbe has urged contractors and suppliers in the province to reinvest their profits into procurement of equipment and machinery.

Dr Kawimbe said local contractors had failed to compete favorably with foreign contractors because they lacked capacity to do quality works upon being awarded contracts.

He challenged the contractors to apply for funds under the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission (CEEC) Funds to procure equipment and machinery.

Dr. Kawimbe said the province still had funds under the CEEC and was awaiting proposals from applicants.
ZANIS/CB/ENDS

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29 COMMENTS

  1. The road that was washed by heavy rains in Chirundu, was it done by the locals, Mr. Mulongoti? Just say you prefer foreigners to locals coz of the inferiority complex thats upon you. You quickly defend foreign contractors when they do shoddy works and quickly castigates locals. Get to know yourself better Sir, and be proud of your fellow Zambians. The problem here is that you give contracts to your relatives and friends and not really those Zambians that are qualified for the job at hand. Wake up Sir. These foreigners will keep laughing at you, and you’ll never know.

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  2. mulongoti,first ensure that deserving local contractors are awarded contracts,the thing is yu pipo have tendence to award contracts to yo friends’ or yo relatives’ or yo cadres even when they do not have the qualified human resource or machinery.first prob those who sit on those tender committees,look at the corruption cases in our courts today,many have a lot to with wrong tenders eg cases involving former defense chiefs.clean up the system zedians are all blacklisted.

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  3. the problem with local contractor is that they like stealing stuff like cement,efyo ifintu tafikosela.nibapompwe munshibila insala.

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  4. You can scout for an any investor minus the Chinaman. Histroy should teach Zambia about these chocholi’s.
    Local investors lack proper managerial skills, others are not risk takers….

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  5. While Mr Minister indicated good an honest words, I would like to ask him to tell the whole GRZ President RB Banda Administration to serious fund research and development activities in our public universities where small institutes must be given projects to do with reference to a clause in our Country’s New Constitution about funding percentages. On “Government says it will continue to engage foreign contractors on its projects as long as local contractors continued to under perform”, let the Minister help our companies to grow with their time of existence.

    We need to spend as much money as possible within our country ZAMBIA.

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  6. I personally feel that Mr Mulongoti is already prejudiced. He’ll always accept foreigners work even when Zambians can do better. Otherwise it would be better if monies given to foreigners can remain in the country. One other thing Mr. Mulongoti, pliz dont make such statements publicy coz then you belittle yourselves in full view of the public, (the whole world); In house weaknesses can be sorted out in a technical manner such that it doesn’t reach a world’s ear. Lets have some pride and independence in the way we reason out things as Zambians. I know that we’ll go out for foreign aid but what am saying is that we shd be proud as Zambians develop confidence within ourselves.

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  7. #8. Maestro, how will govt help local contractors? First, they themselves should be honest enough to say they do not have capacity in areas which they will identify. This system of always wanting govt to do something has blinding people to an extent of not seeing the potential within themselves. For example when traders know too well that they are about to be evicted from trading places becaues they cannot afford to pay rentals, they accuse govt of not helping them. Why not form a cooperative and get one relatively big stall where every victim-to-be can be employed? Thats just one example of how greed has also blinded the so-called local contractors. Use Ujamaa, Harambee ple people.

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  8. We have kept on awarding tenders to Chinese contractors in spite of the proven shoddy or ‘fongkong’ workmanship in certain areas. We have this culture of looking down upon local business entities in preference to anything foreign. This explains why RP fimo fimo was given a tender to evaluate Zamtel assets despite local capability. Looks like we are always looking for ‘kang’ono.’

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  9. Mulongoti has said something sensible for once. And yes, local contractors have themselves to blame for finding themselves in this situation. Too much crookedness on the part of most, and as a result, even the innocent are caught up in this web. However i suggest that contractors are srutinised to avoid kantemba perfomance and also avoid corrupt awarding of contracts.

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  10. Its not always that the foreigners you engage do have better education its because they have proper tools they use some of them don’t even know how to write. Stop giving Jobs to your Relatives who aren’t qualified.

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  11. LUSAKA, i agree with you , they give the jobs to their relatives and then blame the inocent ones

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  12. Ba Honey, my lunch was not bad. just that i kept choking ne icifukushi! I think you know why.

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  13. contracts are usually given to those with connections to the people on top or those who donate some of the money to the ruling party and its officials. Awards are not done on merit so what do you expect Ba Mulongoti

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  14. I think Mulongoti at this point is right infact LPM had mentioend the same point. Many local contractors had been paid money in full yet they decided to get themselves Pajero’s all sorts of cars before doing the work when time for the work to be done they were driving around doing nothing, feeling as though they won a jackpot. There were many Zambians, but since they involved foreiegn comapnies such as RAUBEX there has been high quality jobs and even the ordinary Zambian is happy with the job. And these same foregn people have created jobs for the Zambian people. Thats not bad. If Zambia can change working culture and have a focus to working for quality then we can then have locals do the…

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  15. Contractors in zambia misuse the money on expensive vehicles, concubines and building mansions and fail to complete projects. Its embarassing at times. In fact One big contract is enough for many zambian contractors to become polygamists, and we all know that 1 woman is expensive enough let alone three…..

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  16. PLEASE COME AND INSPECT THE MPATAMATU===>ROAN ROAD, CURRENTLY BEING CONSTRUCTED BY A CHINESE CONSTRUCTION FIRM. MY 8 YEAR OLD SON CAN BUILD A BETTER ROAD!!!

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  17. 11, kamunyama, I very much appreciate your call and input. Like I wrote before, some of our local companies lack research and hence there output is terrible. Give backing from research and development institutes, I belive our companies can be at par with the foreigns ans would be able to do the jobs at even cheaper contractual obligations.

    Without research and development, our companies will continue to under perform. This is why we need to upgrade our education model from that of being academic oriented only to that which is pro-result oriented in being useful to our society.
    I hope this clarifies my earllier information.

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  18. **==no mwenso wabupuba wine, that’s why bamilila amasuku pamitwe, Suwa na ma goregore bali mingilila.

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  19. Do we have civil engineers to inspect these repairs or they are just signed off by some cadres.This has been going on for too long.The former Works minister was saying the same thing on his safari around the country and now Mike is repeating the same.LPM odered an investigation on several contractors but because of vested interests and possibly corruption nothing has come out of it.We are in a real mess.

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