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Alba Iulia
Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Government will not tolerate mines laying off workers because of load shedding-Kambwili

Headlines Government will not tolerate mines laying off workers because of load shedding-Kambwili

Chishimba Kambwili with Amos Chanda at Statehouse
Chishimba Kambwili with Amos Chanda at Statehouse

INFORMATION and Broadcasting Services Minister Chishimba Kambwili has warned that the Government will not condone any threats by mining companies to lay off workers on the basis of power outages.

Mr Kambwili said there was power being imported from Namibia for mining companies to buy at a premium rate.

“We are not going to condone any mining company that will cease operations and lay off workers on the basis of power shortage, there is an option of buying power at a premium rate which is being imported from Namibia for mining companies to operate at full capacity,” he said.

Mr Kambwili said at a press briefing in Luanshya yesterday that he was disappointed with the decision by CNMC Luanshya Copper Mines to put Baluba Mine under care and maintenance because of the power deficit.

The Chinese owned mining company yesterday announced that Baluba Mine and its attendant departments are to be placed on care and maintenance effective today.

This decision was arrived at after considering the escalating cost structure for Baluba Mine owing to the falling copper price, coupled with the energy deficit the country is currently experiencing.

Government has, however, directed the Chinese mining company to rescind its decision to lay off its workers at Baluba Mine.

Mr Kambwili said the decision by the mining company was done without consultation from both the ministry of Labour and that of Mines.

“There has never been discussion between Luanshya Copper Mines to lay off its workers as a result of a shortage of electricity. The mining company was given an option of buying the imported electricity from Namibia at a premium rate.

“As far as Government is concerned, the mine is not closed and all the workers should return for work tomorrow. Whatsoever has been done by the mining company in this case has been considered null and void,” he said.

He said Baluba Mine was the largest employer in Luanshya and the economy of the district would be negatively affected if it was closed.

Meanwhile, the Mineworkers Union of Zambia (MUZ) has called for Government’s quick intervention in the problem of job-cuts and redundancies by the mines.

MUZ President Nkole Chishimba said some mining houses were taking advantage of the current challenges such as the low copper prices, depreciation of the Kwacha and the power deficit to implement their long standing plans to down-size labour.

Mr Chishimba who was commenting on the reported decision to have Chinese-owned CNMC Luanshya Copper Mines’ Baluba underground operations closed and placed under care and maintenance, a move to render over 1, 500 miners, jobless, said Government should prevail over this.

Mr Chishimba who is also Zambia Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) president said in Kitwe yesterday that the labour movement was saddened that the challenges of weakened Kwacha, lower copper prices and the power deficit was leading to closure and shrinking of some mining operations.

“This is a sad development but we feel this should have been foreseen and there must have been designs to mitigate the impact,” Mr Chishimba said.

He said the union was heartbroken to hear reports about the latest redundancies at Baluba where more than 1, 000 employees were earmarked for lay off.

Mr Chishimba also condemned the planned move by Konkola Copper Mines to close down Nchanga underground operations and ultimately have 133 miners declared redundant.

He said this decision by KCM should not be tolerated until all available options were exhausted as there are still mining reserves at Nchanga underground.


  1. Threats will not take you anywhere. Soon the inevitable shall come to pass. Your clueless government will be booted out. Zambians deserves better than this.

    • Gulp… One would the information and broadcasting guy would be aware of the information being broadcasted internationally about the mining sector, copper, Zambia and some of those players are stopping with “immediate” effect. Here’s a clue Minister…Glencore announced yesterday…shhh. It’s not a secret…

    • Kambwili has justified the reason why I always call PF “Bachimbwi No Plan”.

      The PF is just a bunch of foolish criminals with no morals at all. Come 2016 kuya bebele.

      Viva UPND.

    • Kambwili has his brains to fix first. Electricity/energy is part of cost of production and the major one for that matter. You can’t impose high imported cost of power on a company and you expect management to behave like PF! Management meetings make decisions and not like PF’s cabinet meetings that have half of the members sleeping.
      No wonder RB has advised EL to use MMD’s Mwale as GRZ spokesman while waiting for Dora to settle. Can’t you see that even Katele knows MMD is back? Kambwili has never said anything that fits a ministerial statement; his is Jerabo threats all the time. Sober up boss; baleisa abene. Did you see Solwezi on its feet today?

    • iwe chi chimbwili, glencore is closing their operations for 18 months or so, tell them to stop. and if they do stop, then you have my vote. ulabosa sana iwe mambala. maybe its because you have no neck, the head is connected directly to the upper torso straight. you are a mutant. i wonder what special powers you are hiding!!! oh i know, its the power to stop glencore from closing their operations. right on brother man, keep going.

  2. UPND ,cannot win because of HH. Put a president who is not a Tonga . We will vote upnd, Zambians are not foolish . Make my word and you will remember in 2016. I do not hate Tongas ,my wife is a Tonga but there is an in born tribal thing in them.

    • Sorry tribalist some things u can’t control I never thought one late kaponya tribalist would be president but it happened. Lucky for me he died in office.

    • Muzo you are just a drop in the ocean of the Zambian voters. You stink and are a wasted human being on earth. HH is posed to win 2016 elections because he is the most qualified among them all and many Zambians who rejected him have U tunred to and for him making it impossible for ‘president kajilijili jemason to win. Rainbow has single handedly flattened pf.

    • Muzo, say that again? We now looking at Zambia on a bigger picture and not the PF small box.
      In any case PF was only Bemba because of Satan but is now ‘Umodzi kumawa’ and ‘wako niwako’. So don’t cheat yourself on tribal lines. Ask abene Lubemba; the real Bembas will tell you Zambia needs brains and not drunkards.

    • @ muzo,
      Countryman, I think it is not helpful for you turn your back on a sesible person just because he/she belongs to a particular tribe. It is equally wrong for you to embrace a senseless person just because he does not belong to a certain tribe. Unfortunately this is the thinking of most people in Zambia, hence the country will continue to be in a mess.

    • So let me get this straight, you’re married to a Tonga woman who has this “in born tribal thing” and she is good enough for you, but you don’t think a Tonga is good enough to run for the Zambian presidency? I feel for your offspring who have to put up with your tribal $#!!#!

  3. Does it mean that government is forcing mines to over employ? next time everyone who lives in Kalundu, Roadpark and kabulonga will be instructed to employ at least 2 maids and 3 garden boys

  4. A clueless govt run by PFools! The 30% reduction in power pronounced by GRZ through ERB and implemented by CEC is real. Why should mining companies continue losing money by buying expensive Namibian power when they can shut down the mines instead? Let Lungu employ these miners as part of the 500,000 new jobs he is creating. No need to blame investors. PF has failed to run the country. They should just resign now so that we have fresh elections this year, not 2016.

  5. hahahaha

    What a joke of a F.OOL is it your money that you can force them to keep the mine open? Have you seen the price of copper? And Zambians call this baboon a minister

    • You can imagine he was aspiring to be a president. You start wondering what type of people who vote for buffoons like this one.

  6. Kambwili ni Galu kulibe wako ni wako? The facts are Kambwili and your government you are failures. You known what is happening and you want to force companies to employ people. Your economics from Mpatamato secondary school is opposite to the truth.

    That right was sold by your past presidents, in the name of privatisation.
    It is all to do with profits, and shareholder value now.

    • Clueless clueless clueless!!!
      Managing a nation is not similar to running a tavern, or copper stealing business, Mr Head Jerabo!

  8. Hon Kambwili has empty threats. He has no teeth to bite. That’s what happens when he doesn’t know how production and market forces operates. He is one of them who says the load shedding will have a slight impact on Zambian economy. Pretending all is well.

  9. Can statements like this from Kambwili attract investors? Which investor would come to a country where they wil be forced to employ? This economy is dying further because of such caress threats by Chimbwili.

  10. Just look at the difference between hh’s and Siamunene’s eyes. hh’s eyes are maroon red while those of Siamunene are classic and normal. Finshi hh apepa nangu ukulya?

  11. ….I don’t think the mines are taking those drastic measures because of load-shedding…its because of production imbalance…..low production output which translates into inadequate revenue all brought about because of electricity shortfall…..A friend of mine recently opened a wheel alignment centre in kalingalinga…he also had an auxiliary barber shop and a restaurant employing a total of 14 people….the employees reported for work daily only to effectively work for an hour out of the 12hrs….at times zero hours ……..electricity goes at 07hrs comes back around 15 only to go again around 17hrs….. he had no choice but close the dam business…

  12. Ba Kambwili, infintu nafilungula mu Zambia!! The chinese bought the mine to make money for themselves not for Zambia. The only benefit for Zambia is the supply business which you are a part of and of course the cheap labor provided by the Zambians. The mine made it clear that they can not operate on the current few megawatts CEC is supplying. Importing electricity at a “Premium” as you have rightly put it only escalates their operational costs. Unlike the PF government which does nt know accounting, the chinese businessmen have already considered the scenario of importing expensive power from a desert country and am sure it doesnt make business sense to them. Lastly you dont own the mine so you have no authority whatsoever to tell them to keep it running.

  13. Those criticising Kambwili have not really understood what he said. Govt is importing power from Namibia for Baluba mine. What is wrong with that? The problem is these mining companies only want cheap power from Zesco and nothing else.

  14. This is yet another wake-up call for the country. The tendency to think all is well, praise ourselves and fold our arms when there are no major problems is the cause of all this chaos. For once, let our leaders be awake and critical at all times, if we are not to be caught off guard.

  15. Kambwili, dictations at times do not yield anything. Authorising your subordinates to follow certain restrictions while you the master have failed to play your part is just like forcing a cow to produce milk and yet you have not fed it. Who would like to operate at a loss? Play your role and the rest will be self perpetuating. Stop apportioning blame where it can least be found.

  16. Ya ba PF these people are in business. It’s not socialism or communism. U think if someone is making money he would close his business n lay off 1600 workers. Sometimes u can just pretend u have a brain please. I believe a Kambwili is an instrument meant for manual labour and nothing else.

  17. Has this buffoon ever run a proper without dipping in govt contracts. ..he expects the mines to pay a premium rate when copper is at all time low…no won

  18. Has this buffoon ever run a proper without dipping in govt contracts. ..he expects the mines to pay a premium rate when copper is at all time low…no wonder our economy is being mismanaged by these empty tins.

  19. He know those people who have lost jobs will not vote for him since the mine is in his area good for him, you threaten the mines as if you will pay them from your own pocket honestly this dull chap is not fit to be a minister.

  20. Government should be mitigating and suggesting how they will help companies stay in business. The premium charge for electricity from Namibia (I thought we were EXPORTING to Namibia?) should be explained further in terms of how Government will mitigate LOSSES resulting from importing this power. I believe that is what we need to hear from government and its spokespersons. The era of threats and pronouncements disappeared with the one-party state. It will not work any longer.

    • This frog Kambwili is too STUPlD to understand that this would be the constructive thing to do.

      All he knows is shouting and threats.

      What a clueless arsehole! And the PF made him a Minister! And their SPOKESMAN!!!!!

      Proof that they have no idea what they are doing.

  21. I would request LUNGU to expose his ministers more so that they know what is happening world wide. Kambwili is speaking like he owns the Zambia. The world has become a global village and Zambia is not an island. You may not dictate on the mine operators because they are world wide, while you as Kambwili you only look at which of your voters will be affected. It is a general challenge we have as Zambians, we are very much concerned with what our relatives will eat tomorrow. There is massive exodus of refugees going into western Europe as we speak right now, have you ever head Germany saying close the bourders? It is all about how you see the world. If mines say they may not pay every one in the industry, then allow them to employ those they can manage to pay, so that the production of…

  22. Learn from Malaysian Government in the quest for quick solutions in economic transformation within a short time frame in key national priority areas such as poverty,healthy,economy and unemployment including energy and mining creating short-term milestones in the NDP plans without necessary being locked in the MTFS
    Its time a round table was called to discuss the mining impact on prices and energy shortages to reconfirm down wet and map up the strategy even amidst mining revenue impairments impacting huge losses on global mining to ensure all is sustained Its not typical to Zambia alone
    Malaysian government achieved significant government and economic transformation within…Malaysian government achieved significant government and economic transformation within a very short time. Using…

  23. Using this approach, they addressed national key priority areas such as poverty, crime and unemployment It will also help to see Genuine Mining partners of all times

    Call them for a map up strategy especially that growth in Energy and Mining will impact even after 2020 as projected productivity calls for more Investments to ensure taking the advantage long-term towards NDPs

  24. your ignorance shall forever override your level of education. If you don’t understand issues the best you can do is to keep quite and save yourself from self humiliation.

  25. Just call them sit down and strategize during the gloomy MUSHOLOZI is currently having an Indaba trying to workout the WIN WIN situation with mines in similar situation his operational PHAKASI copied from Malaysia is yielding results

    I am sure GOV can also achieve results in dialogue and confirm issues in that manner creating that support and confidence

  26. The suspension of operations and laying off of workers brings me to the pronouncement the president made that by the end of 2016 the PF will create 500,000 jobs. And idi.ot propagandist namely Sunday Changa echoed what his pathetic stu.pid president said. Kambwili is now feeling the heat. These are chaps who have been telling us that everything is ok regardless because government is doing something about our situation. Now they have been exposed as a government without any clue of how the economy is supposed to be managed. They thought they would get away with the blame game where everything is caused by external factors. Time has caught up with them and now they cant even answer to what Madam Nawakwi has been telling and asking them. What a shame. Come 2016 all these idio,ts must be…

  27. Mining decisions and risk management are a normal business scenario and a long-term player stays and benefits all even I depressed commodity prices

    Zambia is close to a duopoly type of mining arrangements with collusive thinking always either restricting output wanting to always trade above super normal prices as they want downsize to increase profits Often times the Nash equilibrium is that mining players cartel and all comply and Elder Kambwili will always be playing a looser

    Dialogue to have a WIN WIN situation like ZUMA is doing currently

  28. Mining decisions and risk management are a normal business scenario and a long-term player stays and benefits all even I depressed commodity prices

    Zambia Mining is close to a “duopoly” type of mining arrangements in output structure and investments , with collusive thinking always as silent prayer , either restricting output wanting to always trade above super normal prices as they downsize to increase profits never wanting to go through the rains

    Often times the ‘NASH EQUILIBRIUM’ is that mining players cartel and all comply and Elder Kambwili will always be playing a looser

    Dialogue to have a WIN WIN situation like ZUMA is doing currently will save matters

  29. Commodities yes have been the most hit and challenged asset class in all asset classes this year if you look at it that way analyse and see the spreads ,suffering from the slowing growth in economies, a strong dollar against the kwacha ,a drop in inflation expectations compounded by the surge in supply even in depressed and increased cost of business

    But Honestly for any business cycles and these mining investing firms there has to be some opportunities created in this selloff my friend Mining is a long-term investments prone to all risks over the horizon It should not be only super normal profits

    Dialogue will the issue for that long-term Investor not a scarper

  30. Not sure what government will do – direct the international markets to increase the price of copper? Or why not chase them all away, that means the copper will still be there 2km underground for future generations to pick (if they survive that far)

  31. Mr Kambwili sir, not sure even to say sir.mines are run on certain business models and not what you want. What is there to show for your degree

  32. Kambwili if you got a call from Plot 1 to make nusance statements then say so. Imwe the mines are private sector they can do as they want. Everyone is in it to make profits not lossess what part of that do you not understand. If the owners want to refuse to purchase expensive power that is their decision. Who are you or the zambian govt to tell them otherwise.

    No plan just pack your katundu and be ready to go ….

  33. This Kmbwili is arrogant and uneducated! How does he expect the mines to function when production is down due to load shedding. This type of ignorance does not take the country forward? The mines are having their share of load shedding too. Hasn’t this man realized that people are losing jones because of load shedding. Ostrich attitude!

  34. Your Excellency ECL, give Zambians better, expereinced and wise ministers. Some of your ministers are making our beautiful mother Zambia a laughing stalk.

  35. The picture shows that Kambwili hasn’t got a brain cell to memorise any speech that is why everything is scripted for him. Judging by the way he handles issues (Kabova kabova type) one would ascertain that he hasn’t got the experience of governing people .He needs to tone down. Most importantly , he’s got to go on his knees and thank the PF and people of Luanshya whom he blind folded to vote for him .The only experience he had before he become minister was that of a Changa Changa at Mine stores Chingola .After ZCCM retrenched him , he set up a ka Jarabo type of business at Mwaiseni in Chingola dealing in scrap metal.

  36. How does Kambwili manage his house? I perceive there is terror and misery in his household.
    ‘Lelo ta mwalye uwali’ he oders.
    Kambwili must be investigated, his utterances are abnomal and not fit for the purpose.
    PF is the only government to have such low calibre type of ministers- that explains the recklessness and defficiency in governance in Zambia.

  37. Threats from this Minister will remain just that “empty words” and will be ignored by well meaning people and businesses. A responsible Government would have had the Minister of Mines going to Luanshya and meeting up with the management team to discuss best way forward – and not the Government spokesperson uttering nonsensical threats when GRZ has no control in the running of the business as was the case before under ZCCM. It therefore, follows that without dialogue the Mines have a right to make a decision that makes business sense and the cutting of running costs is such a decision.

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