Communications and Transport Minister Brian Mushimba has appealed to Zambians to fully support the transformation that is currently taking place at Zamtel.
Mr Mushimba noted that Government through Zamtel is making huge investments such as the construction of 1009 communication towers across the country at a cost of US$280 million.
He said the members of the public should play their role by making Zamtel SIM cards the primary card for calls and internet.
Mr Mushimba said Zamtel is currently positioning itself to play a central role in the country’s digital transformation journey hence the need for public support.
He was speaking on Tuesday when he officially launched ZamPay, a new electronic payment solution which uses a Quick Response (QR) code installed on the mobile phone device.
He jokingly suggested that it should be made a crime for any adult Zambian not to own a Zamtel SIM card.
Mr Mushimba said the launch of ZamPay is a big deal as it will significantly contribute to the creation of a cashless society in Zambia.
“Today, I successfully launched ZamPay, a new way to support a cashless society, developed in-house by Zamtel. I actually was the first to use the platform and bought some groceries from spar supermarket using the platform (app downloaded onto my Zamtel line and scanned the bar code at the cash register in spar and boom, I paid for the groceries). Technology amazes me every day and we must evolve with it or we will be left behind,” Mr Mushimba further stated.
“I made an appeal that we support Zamtel, our own baby as Zambians, by embracing their products and using Zamtel SIM cards as our primary cards for phone calls and internet. It will make a difference,” he said.
He added, “allow me to explain further why this initiative is great. The benefits of buying local products is beneficial to our economy. When you buy local, it stays local. More jobs will be created in your town, the community will prosper, and people will be more connected than ever to their own town. Your money helps revamp local businesses to flourish. This will be meaningful to you, as well as neighbours close to you. I urge everyone to promote local products.”
Mr Mushimba also recommend the buying of local products in order to help support your local business men and women.
“When you buy a product from a local service business, you are not only supporting the local economy, but also supporting your neighbors. Let me give an analogy: The citizen down the road, the shoe cobbler that owns the local repair shop, or the woman that sells her homemade skincare and bath products, appreciate their customers so much more. Why? Not only do they get to warmly meet you, a person who uses their products face to face, but also your support helps them and their businesses excel. You help feed their families, pay their bills, and put a roof over his or her family’s head. This chain goes on and on. It is a huge deal to buy locally for these reasons.
And Zamtel Chief Executive Officer Sydney Mupeta stated that his firm has embarked on a transformational journey towards digitization and will be coming up with innovative products and services which are relevant to the lives of the customer.
“As Zamtel we recognize the fact that our customers today have become extremely busy and require products which are “On the Go!” yet are safe and secure. Just last month, we announced the launch of our 4G network on mobile on the Copperbelt which has resulted in our customers enjoying faster internet speeds. The launch of ZamPay today is yet another response to our customers for a need to have a seamless payment solution which addresses their busy lifestyles,” Mr Mupeta said.
He added, “a number of business houses in our country today, large and small, have grappled with the problem of cash related risk exposure mainly through thefts. ZamPay will eliminate the risk of handling sums of cash and will bring about efficiencies in the cost of running business. The need to spend money for “Cash in transit” security services will become a thing of the past.”