GOVERNMENT has warned lodge owners in South Luangwa National Park (SLNP) to desist from quoting goods and services in dollars.
Eastern Province permanent secretary Chanda Kasolo said the trend of quoting goods and services in dollars is hindering the growth of domestic tourism.
Mr Kasolo said lodge owners in SLNP were deliberately charging in dollars to prevent Zambians from accessing their tourism sites.
He said at a press briefing in Chipata on Thursday last week that Government would also not entertain any investor who will be found wanting of mistreating Zambians.
“The lodge owners in SLNP, who are charging their services in dollars and do not want to adhere to Government directive, should stop this bad practice,” Mr Kasolo said.
He said most Zambians have failed to visit the national park because of the selfishness of the people operating lodges in the area.
Mr Kasolo said it has come to his attention that some lodges close their facilities when there are no foreign tourists visiting the park to prevent Zambians from accessing their services.
He said there is need for lodge operators to allow Zambians to start appreciating their God-given natural resources.
And Mr Kasolo has warned of legal action against people mining gold illegally in Petauke district.
He said it is illegal for anyone with prospecting licence to venture into gold mining because such licences only allows interested people to carry out exploration works to ascertain whether an area has minerals or not.
Mr Kasolo said he is aware of some foreigners who are inciting Zambians to venture into illegal activities for their economic gain.
He said no one has a valid gold mining licence in the area and that when caught, such individuals will be treated as criminals.