NDOLA on the Copperbelt has seen a resurgence of various industries which have led to increased job creation, former National Energy Sector and Allied Workers Union secretary general Yotam Mtayachalo has said.
Mr Mtayachalo said it was clear that Ndola was on the upswing in terms of industrial activity as some old industries had continued to expand, while new companies had opened in the city. He said in Ndola yesterday that the Government’s commitment to attracting investment had resulted in the setting up of new industries that were benefitting the local people.
Mr Mtayachalo said it was not correct that Ndola was inactive because a lot of private and State investments had gone into re-industrialising the city.
He was reacting to former Zambia Congress of Trade Unions president Fackson Shamenda who said in yesterday’s Post newspaper that the MMD Government had failed to revive industries, and singled out Ndola as being desolate.
He said the setting up of cement plants by Lafarge and Zambezi Portland had stirred further economic development in Ndola. “Now we are expecting the US$400 million Dangote Cement Plant which will provide 6, 000 jobs,” he said.
Mr Mtayachalo said Ndola Lime had continued to provide steady employment for many residents and that its re-capitalisation would guarantee creation of more jobs. He said it was clear that the foreign direct investment (FDI) coming into the country had led to positive effects on many Zambians.
“There has been more than $4 billion investment in the mining sector and more than 20, 000 jobs have been created so I cannot understand anyone claiming that FDI is not benefitting anyone,” he said. Mr Mtayachalo said many industries had been set up while others were being revised not only in Ndola but elsewhere in the country.
He said the revival of Roan Antelope Mine and the Konkola Deep Mining Project were additional evidence of how much FDIs were contributing to industrial development and job creation. “It is not right for people like Mr Fackson Shamenda to assume that there is nothing happening in Ndola or that there are no jobs being created,” he said.
Mr Mtayachalo said President Banda was not responsible for the closure of most industries in Ndola but had done well in creating policies that would ensure continued revival and investment by new companies.
He said it was Mr Shamenda, the Ndola Central Constituency Patriotic Front parliamentary candidate, who had allegedly failed as a labour leader to prevent many companies from closing down.
He advised Mr Shamenda to focus on discussing matters from an informed and accurate position and not to mislead the public.
[Times of Zambia]