By Chaka Zulu
One evening three years ago as I was watching the ZNBC main news, a news item appeared that the then Special Assistant to the President for Projects and Implementation Hon. Lucky Mulusa said that Government had identified Ngabwe district as the place where the New Capital City of Zambia would move to.
I was shocked at why Government would do that. Thoughts like what would remain of Lusaka City (the current Capital City of Zambia) were on my mind. My thoughts were moved because I have three properties in Lusaka where I get a good rental return.
My thoughts were only relaxed when both the Minister of Lusaka Hon. Japhet Mwakalombe and the Presidential Spokesperson Mr. Amos Chanda both announced on separate occasions that government had no such intentions and that those were Hon. Mulusa personal views.
However, I started researching why Countries around the world change Capital Cities. I among others found out that Brazil’s capital relocated from overcrowded Rio de Janeiro to the planned, built city of Brasilia in 1961. Another is Nigeria. In 1991 the capital of Nigeria, Africa’s most populated country, was moved from Lagos because of overcrowding. Abuja, a planned city in central Nigeria. In the 1970s, Tanzania’s capital began the move from coastal Dar es Salaam to centrally-located Dodoma.
From my research I found that countries change capital cities for a number of reasons. Some of these include over crowding, location, unplanned City, political, economic and religious just to mention a few.
About a month ago, I managed to chat with Hon. Mulusa at his farm with his father when (my firm) went to spray the cows and install mobile drinkers. I asked him if he didn’t mind to educate me about why he wanted a new capital of Zambia to be constructed and why he choose Ngabwe.
Hon. Mulusa agreed and started by telling me that Zambia missed being the Brussels of Southern Africa.
He then went on to say that it was open gossip that Lusaka City (the current capital city of Zambia) was a poorly planned city as can be testified by the high number of unplanned settlements, the high number of diseases such as cholera which affect the city during the rain season and the lack of properly developed infrastructure and social facilities.
And then I asked him why Ngabwe?
“Because it is everything that a modern developed capital city has. It is a cocktail of London, Paris and New York City without Infrastructure,” Hon Mulusa said.
He went further and told me that Ngabwe district which is located in Central Province is more centrally located than any part of the country. Furthermore it it the mid point of the Copperbelt and Lusaka Province which are the two power houses of Zambia. Lastly but not the least, it has a beautiful scenery as it has the Kafue National Park and also has the Lukanga Swamps.
Then I asked if we had the money to fund such a mega project and who will construct the new city. This was his plan:
To be continued in Part 2