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Alba Iulia
Sunday, January 17, 2021

Mines Minister supsends issuance of mining permits, calls for re-instating of fired 1,000 miners

Economy Mines Minister supsends issuance of mining permits, calls for re-instating of...

Government has with immediate effect suspended the issuance of new mining and non-mining rights and dissolved the Mining Advisory Committee (MAC).

Mines and Natural Resources Minister Wilbur Simuusa made the announcement during a press briefing in Lusaka today.

Mr. Simuusa noted that there were a lot of irregularities, litigations and allegations of corruption in the manner mining and non-mining licenses were been issued.

The Minister stated that during the period of suspension, there will be an audit and clean up of all mining and non-mining rights.

He, however, stated that all valid mining and non-mining rights shall remain valid during the period of suspension.

Mr. Simuusa also observed that the current process of issuing mining and non-mining rights was inefficient and bureaucratic, saying under the current Mining Act, there were several steps that had to be exhausted before issuance of each type of mining right and non-mining rights.

He said the situation resulted into a huge backlog of unprocessed applications, adding that the ministry would also embark on upgrading the flexi-cadastre hardware and software to ensure speedy processing of the applications.

The minister said this would also include new workflows in the cadastre licensing system.

Meanwhile, Mr. Simuusa has called for the re-instating of the 1, 000 miners that were relieved of their duties at China Non-Ferrous Corporation Africa (NFCA) Mining Plc in Chambishi after they protested against poor working conditions.

He urged management, unions and workers to work together to resolve their disputes and immediately bring the situation back to normal.

Mr. Simuusa said the industrial unrest among mine workers on the Copperbelt was not in the best interest of the country, workers and mining unions.

Mr. Simuusa said the Ministry of Labour would continue to superintend over discussions between the three parties to ensure a lasting solution was found.



  1. Clean up all areas Zambia please! Also consider a law of partnering with Zambians or holding the land in the hands of locals so that we don’t end up with Zimbabwe issue! Thanks GRZ!

  2. We need some form of profit sharing, now that metal prices are buoyant. A formula should be worked out, whereby the state gets a share of the windfall from the high metal prices, the workers get a share, and the owner of the mines get the lion’s share. This profit sharing bonus can be named a “ONCE FOR ALL BONUS”, as they do on the sugar plantations of Trinidad and Guyana. Such a nomenclature, results in no bonus being paid should the metal price collapse. AFTER ALL, THE RESOURCES BELONG TO THE PEOPLE….THEY NEED A SHARE OF THE PROFIT?? Workers in Indonesia, Chile and Peru strike on a regular basis…to improve their conditions of service, AND THEY SUCCEED. VIVA BASHI MINE!!!!!!

  3. Ba Simuusa its not just returning for work that’s important,but these Miners are paid peanuts.They are treated like secondary citizens in their own country by these chinese investors.Help them resolve this issue with more money in their pockets.Mbulu gave them a K2,000,000.00,but its like it was DONCHI KUBEBA.I dont trust you guys.

  4. The workers need to be patient. The government has offered to look into these conditions. It takes time to sort out all the issues, sitting with the stake-holders and coming up with solutions and figures that everyone will be comfortable with. The new government has been in office barely a month. And the employers are not helping by firing these people. Infact, it seems they are arrogantly testing to see what we will do, which is rather cheeky.

  5. Simusaa would make a good doctor, if the mining licence issuing is beuracratic, the correct solution is to suspend it ‘with immediate effect’ and end up with nothing as opposed to having the slow system.
    If he was a doctor, dont tell him you have a headache, he would be more than happy to stop your headache, by separating the head from the body.

  6. No one can force an institution to employ people who have been disciplined, except of course in a dictatorship. If people are paid peanuts, why don’t they quit and join where they will be paid more? The market should balance itself.

  7. Gents even 2millon increase is little. These Chinese make shit loads of money. $400.00 this is nothing. A cleaner in Australia makes anavareage $3500 per month and these don’t work for mines. A cleaner in a mine here would get $6400.00 per month after tax.

  8. internationally mining salaries should be quite high, they should renegotiate conditions under which these mines operate. I think china needs our minerals more than we need them.

  9. People in the so called first world once had ‘free’ workers and then they had ‘cheap’ workers and now there is the so called ‘market forces’ mentioned by the Saint. We do not have to choose to settle somewhere between free and cheap and accept it based on the first world as it is. We are a different stage in our very coloured development. Strange how we have helped build the first world… hard pill to swallow but it’s time we looked at raising the income of ‘those below’ :)

  10. Some of these companies would not be allowed to operate in Chile and South Africa, yet these are fellow developing countries just like Zambia, the mining regulations and labour laws in South Africa are stiff, these guys know what the word human dignity means in the mining sector. A mine will be shut down for failing to meet safety requirements but pa Zed we have settled for less, workers in Chinese coal mines in Zambia go without basic safety clothing and it’s ok!!??? expatriates from India are getting $4,000 to as much as $10,000 and local qualified Zambians are in the region of $800 doing the same job! i thought the labour ACT enshrines equal work equal pay…. why the discrimination???

  11. Bloggers on this site are pathetic, people DO YOU EVEN understand what it is to be Africa’s largest copper producer and the worlds 7th largest producer??? not even South Africa comes close. But why have we chosen to live in poverty is it wrong to ask that a Zambian miner be paid the same Salary as a South African miner?? we all Know that Zambian mines will still be profitable at a copper price of $4,000 per tone, the price is currently around $9,000. if KCM can get someone from India to come and do the same job that a Zambian can do why pay the expat $7,000 and the local chap only gets $800. Its not about take it or leave it. it’s about equality and fairness in the corporate world.

    • Immigration and Labour laws are the problem, not the mine operators. they are only doing what the law in Zambia allows them.

  12. #13. I agree with you. a Malawian friend yesterday told me that Truelly, Zambia should not be poor some one could be benefitng, It is pathetic. Regarding professionalism, must be treated with equaly basis. people with similar qualification should be paid equally irrespective of wheather foreign or National. The Mining firm have money, I am told some foreigners fly every day from South Africa to work in Lumwana and back to sout africa for 30 days. all years round, every day why should a Zambian be discriminated. an you confort yourself that we should not implement a windfall or wtaver good tax regime? that is being NAIVE. The logicical way is pay people reasonably according to their skills.

  13. You**** calling for A major Chinese screwing why were the mines sold to them in the first place? Because you guys ran ZCCM and FAILED. 

    Why do expats work in Zambia? Because you guys work in the beer holes and brothels only. You just keep time at 1700 so you can hurry to get shot drunk and laid.

    So when you bunch of losers sober up and get the will to work then you can feed yourselves. 

    For now just shut the ***** and let the foreigners feed you.

    That’s the truth learn how to change it with hard work not with downright stupid allegations and moaning like a pregnant whore.

    You bloody lazy lot.

  14. BWANA MINISTER, whats going to happen to applications that were submitted long before your pronouncements?One option could be to allow the applications to be processed under the existing system until a new system is put in place to replace it.Even when a new system is launcehd, the ideal situation is to do a parallel run of the two systems and gradually phase out the old system.Bringing a sudden change of the kind is like dipping a red hot metal into cold water.THE SUDDEN change in temperature will have adverse effects.Keep the system running until you find an alternative.Removal of MAC its similar to what is happening in other sectors of the economy,but it should not take too long to constitute a mining advisory commitee.WE NEED TO KEEP WORKING MAN. DO NOT STIFLE INNICIENTIVES MADE.

  15. Let facts be told,if there is anything that needs to changed its not necessarily making employers pay more money to workers, but the atitude of us zambians towards work.If workers have achived their agreed production targets well and good demand for more money from your employer.If the workers have not achieved the agreed production targets, they have no basis on which to demand more money for their pockets.The govt needs to change the song,and the sooner the better.TELL THE ZAMBIAN WORKER TO WORK HARD AND THEN DEMAND FOR A BETTER PAY.MAKING EMPLOYERS INCREASE SALARIES WILL LEAD TO UNEMPLOYMENT for employers would rather retain few workers and pay them well.IS IT WHAT WE NEED AS A NATION TO INCREASE UNEMPLOYMENT?

  16. I see.
    I hope we are headed the right direction.
    Emotions should be kept as far away from governance as possible.
    National issues require sober minds and a sense of great ration.

  17. What we need is to revise the immigration and labour laws that allowed foreign investors to behave the way they do in Zambia. Simples. Over to you MPs in parliament.

  18. If our current laws allow KCM to bring in any Patel and Singh and pay them whatever they want, then they have not broken the law. If the Chinese fired those workers legally, then the law protects them.

    We are a country where the rule of the law rules. So our MPs, who represent us, should ensure the laws they make are for our good.


  20. Mr. Minister you better find a quick solution to that problem. If those Chinese are here to enrich themselves with our minerals by paying 0.6% to our government, pay peanuts to the Zambian workers and pay more to their Chinese workers its unfair. They better go back home if they think they have a lot of copper in their country which they can go mine. Its theirs and and copper in Zambia is 100% ours. Make them to understand this pretty well Mr .Minister Please..

  21. Tremendous issues here. I’m very happy to peer your article. Thank you so much and I’m looking ahead to contact you. Will you kindly drop me a mail?

  22. This was October. It is the end of January and we still haven’t got to a point where investors can apply for licences.
    This is ridiculous and preventing employment and investment in Zambia’s biggest employment sector
    Wake up PF – you promised jobs in 90 days and you have not delievered.
    By suspending licences you have shot yourself in the foot

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