An elder from Kafisali area in Chingola leads other residents during a protest against China Copper Mining at the District Commissioners' office on Tuesday, September 1, 2015.
An elder from Kafisali area in Chingola leads other residents during a protest against China Copper Mining at the District Commissioners’ office on Tuesday, September 1, 2015.

Residents living around a disputed prospecting area in Chingola’s Kafisali area have called for a forensic audit into how a Chinese investor grabbed the mining area from Zambian owners under the directive of Mines minister Christopher Yaluma and Copperbelt Minister Mwenya Musenge.

The residents allege that Yaluma and Musenge pocketed US$2 million from the Chinese to facilitate the mine takeover.

According to the residents and sources at the Geological Survey department in Lusaka, China Copper Mining forced itself on the prospecting licence of Donalds Investments Limited, a Zambian owned company.

The residents want the takeover by the Chinese probed saying the company was involved in pollution and other illegal activities.

The residents allege that Mines Minister Christopher Yaluma and Copperbelt Minister Mwenya Musenge were bribed to the tune a US$2 million by the Chinese to facilitate the illegal take over of the prospecting area.

these Chinese are now polluting our houses with their mining activities

They believe Mr Yaluma and Mr Musenge were being paid an undisclosed monthly salary by the Chinese.The residents complained that it was becoming common for Chinese
investors to conduct illegal activities on the Copperbelt.The residents who staged a peaceful protest to the office of the District commissioner for Chingola on the 1st September asked for independent people to have Mr.Yaluma and Mr Musenge investigated to ascertain whether they were involved in the Chinese mine takeover.

“The Chinese used to come to the area but we knew it belonged to other people. The next thing we heard was that the mine now belongs to the Chinese. But these Chinese are now polluting our houses with their mining activities,” Chanda Kombe said.

According to Kombe, China Copper Mining has been dumping acid, oil and other chemicals in Kafisali since it started mining activities.Some residents who spoke by phone from Chingola said the Chinese mining firm was involved in air pollution and want this disturbance to be stopped immediately.

Chingola District Commissioner Philip Kalima  assured the residents that experts will investigate their concerns immediately to rectify the matter.

The two ministers are said to have directed the officials at the Geological Survey Department and local authorities in Chingola to ensure that the prospecting area in Kafisali area was given to China Copper Mines where they promised to terminate the employment of any worker who opposed their directive.

“Initially the Chinese came and made an application for the same area that belonged to the Zambian company. However, the local authority in Chingola informed the Chinese that the prospecting area was for another investor. According to our investigations, the Chinese went to the Copperbelt Minister Mwenya Musenge who later collaborated with the Mines minister Christopher Yaluma to instruct us to give them the area,” a resident from Chingola said.

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The Chinese company has refused to observe any environmental and other regulations since it is involved in the production of pollutants that have affected the local people around the prospecting area.

“The company is involved in heavy pollution from blasting and copper trading even though their licence is confined to mining prospecting only” the source said.
According to a search at the GSD, China Copper Mine has no legal document to the prospecting area they are currently occupying.

“When you look at what China Copper mine is doing right now, it looks perfectly normal and legal, but it is when you ask them about their documents. They have nothing legal. This licence is showing that these are the mining details but when you go physically to the site, you realize a very serious irregularity because the Chinese are doing contrary to what is on their licence,” the source said.

Both Yaluma and Musenge could not be reached for comments before publishing, but efforts are still being made to get the side of the story from the two ministers.

Meanwhile the Zambia Environmental Management Agency (ZEMA) has served China copper mines with an Enviromental restoration order.

ZEMA STATEMENT

Below is a Press statement released to the media by ZEMA Principal Information and Communication Officer Irene Lungu Chipili

Pursuant to Section 105 of the Environmental Management Act (“EMA”) No. 12 of 2011, Zambia Environmental Management Agency (ZEMA) on 8th September, 2015 issued an Environmental Restoration Order to China Copper Mines Limited (“CCM”) of Chingola in the Copperbelt Province of the Republic of Zambia.
CCM has been ordered to take any measures to reduce, remedy or mitigate any adverse effects related to pollution of the Fitula and Muntimpa Streams and surrounding environs resulting from its Leaching and Solvent Extractions Operations. To this end, CCM has specifically been ordered to:


  1. Immediately cease operations at the Leaching and Solvent Extraction Plants and associated infrastructure which were the source of the said pollution;

  2. Construct another pond south of the current leach ponds to act as a Pollution Control Dam (“PCD”) which pond is to be lined with High Density Polyethylene (HDP) material to contain future possible pollution occurrences;

  3. Restore affected land including the two streams (Fitula and Mimbula);

  4. Remove or alleviate any injury to land, animals, and the environment or to the amenities of Kafisali and Kankomo Communities; and

  5. Immediately provide an alternative source of clean and safe drinking water to the communities of Kifisali and Kankomo and their livestock until such a time that the contamination in the Fitula and Mimbula streams is reduced to acceptable levels to the satisfaction of ZEMA.


ZEMA takes this opportunity to remind all licensed facilities to adhere to the conditions stipulated by environmental law and other relevant laws and uphold environmental friendly practices. Further ZEMA wishes to reiterate that it is a requirement of the law for all development projects to go through the Environmental Impact assessment and to adhere fully to the conditions of approval where a project is approved. It is an offence to conduct business activities contrary to the provisions of the EMA.

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16 COMMENTS

  1. Zambian need the truth and what is reported is half truth because prospecting/ exploration licence is different from mining. From the above statements it seems this Kafisali prospect is still under exploration hence who ever is doing mining should be prosecuted even the locals like Mr Kombe they surely do not know the law and what they are talking about. Prospecting or exploration licence under the current Zambian law does not allow any one to mine but curry out a research and then report to the Ministry of Mines the discovery before granted a mining licence.

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    • The Zambian law is not readily available for ordinary people to access neither is it in an understandable language.The issue here is that chinese mine is polluting the enviroment and ZEMA has ordered them to stop.The thing that needs to be investigated is whether the ministers were bribed. With our ailing economy its not a far fetched idea that its easy to bribe ministers.It’s just sad that they accept bribes at the expense of Zambians,their children and future generations.Look what happened when the Brits enticed our chiefs with shiny objects.However face it thats how all business is conducted in Zambia.

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  2. The Zambian times should make a lot of investigations before reporting any thing for the public to see, the local authority have no power on the mines and issuing of licences. The current generations are lazy hence we can not read even our constitution on matters affecting us and environment, a lot of people pass their comments from political drive and not from the knowledge and understanding of the issues at hand. This is avoidable if people are reporting correctly and truth.

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  3. Someone in the picture looks like Ben Kapita (disgraced former vice president of UPND). Or am I seeing double vision? Kapita should take a DNA test with that man. One of the fathers and mothers of the two gentlemen might have misbehaved.

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  4. Face it Guys.
    The country has been sold to foreigners.
    Your role is TO SUPPLY CHEAP LABOUR.
    It is for this reason that your graduates are unemployed…LESS EXPERIENCED EXPATS ARE DOING THEIR JOBS, AT 6-10 TIMES THEIR SALARY!
    This will continue under current investment policy.

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  5. This country is a joke go to China and see how blacks/ Africans are treated and yet here we are giving away our God given birth right for a few hundred thousand dollars. What a shame.

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  6. With due respect, I am so hurt at how our leaders take things for granted and sale our resources in the name of get rich quick schemes. Such kind of riches can be equated to blood money. I wonder who will lead our country with a genuine will of taking the country forward. I hope the poor villagers voice will be taken seriously for a change.

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  7. Lets be fair here , if it were you offered US$2million just to issue a licence to chinese people and you know they will perform better that a local company What will you do honestly??

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    • Anyoko,
      to answer your question honestly, I would not sell my soul to the devil. Figuratively speaking, of course.

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  8. Why did it go the Chinese? Because their backhanders and under table payments are more superior and that’s what counts in corrupt Zed. Had a union guy tell me he was fired for rocking the boat. His Chinese boss constantly boasted to him that he was untouchable because of how much he paid a previous resident of state house. Now Chinois could be lying… But in Zed he is still in business while Union guy fighting the good fight for better conditions got shown the door. That’s our problem to solve. You hear me ED?

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  9. HE Edgar Lungu do not protect these two ministers if what is reported is true let them speedly face the law. This is our fuel is very expensive despite being cheap from the source. our meal meal very expensive despite good harvest at times our maize even go to warste.

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  10. When you are paid to tell or write about a lie,you will not conclude your story.why is the Zambian owner not mentioned?

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  11. Anyoko is something you don’t even think about and naturally support a Zambian! The other pressing issue is Chinese people don’t follow laws even in their own country. Everything is about short cuts and no respect for ethics, environmental laws and people. Citizens of a country come first and foreigners second. Your profile is showing Canada so you should know how things work their. Foreign immigrants come second and Canadian’s first especially when applying for jobs unless they is a shortage on skilled labour. A Zambian owning that mine is the right thing to do. Once these people are done with Zambia they leave the country in a worst state than it was.

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  12. You can’t intrust a Chinese on enviromental matters cos their home country is badly polluted even the air quality is poor. Kafupi destroyed what Kaunda built. Wake up Zed and fight to share the national cake.. Those are your natural resources, guard them with a jealous eye 🙂

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