COPPERBELT Minister Bowman Lusambo says President Lungu is disappointed with a Chinese company, Mei Mei Investments, for backtracking on its initial plans to set up a US $150 million mini-city along the Ndola-Kitwe dual carriageway.
The mini city on a piece of land next to Levy Mwanawasa Stadium was to comprise houses, warehouses, a five-star hotel, shopping mall, an amusement park and a service station.
President Lungu was at the ground-breaking ceremony for the US$150 million project on May 6, 2016.
The Ndola City Council has since summoned Mei Mei management to explain the change of plans to construct the mini-city.
Mr Lusambo said this when he toured the mall with Ndola mayor Amon Chisenga, Ndola Central member of Parliament (MP) Emmanuel Mulenga and Patriotic Front (PF) Copperbelt chairperson Stephen Kainga.
He said Dola Hill Mall is in a prime location next to the stadium, which can be complementary.
“The President is annoyed. He was coming from Kitwe and was very shocked that things going on here are totally different.
“We want to make sure we move in,” Mr Lusambo said.
And Mr Mulenga said Mei Mei needs to adhere to their original plan submitted to the local authority before land was provided to it unlike a situation where the Chinese are engaged in the wholesale of goods.
“They had a plan and it is the reason the council gave them the land, they said they were going to build modern infrastructure and it is the modern infrastructure we need in Ndola Central but look at what they are doing,” Mr Mulenga said.
The delegation was also surprised to find construction works in the buffer zone, near to the main road.
Ndola mayor Chisenga said it is important for any developer of land to follow plans as submitted.
He summoned Mei Mei management to explain the activities at the mall and why construction of the initial mini city had not started.
“All that is happening at the mall is wholesale, killing the businesses of the locals,” Mr Chisenga said.