Monze District Administrative Officer Gorreti Bbalo says Southern Province Tourism and Investment Expo will benefit the local communities and has called on the traditional leadership in the district to release land for developmental projects when government makes requests, so as to ensure that the district is not left behind in development.
And a local business man Fancy Gondwe has asked the local community to support government initiatives aimed at empowering local communities as that is the only way they will benefit from the national cake.
Meanwhile Monze Town Council Public Relations Officer Kanchele Kanchele observed that the forthcoming Southern Province Tourism and Investment Expo will help expose the investment potential of the district to the outsiders both locally and internationally.
Speaking during an interactive Chikuni Community Radio program dubbed “Atubabushe” Bbalo who is the Chairperson for the District Expo Committee explained that development sits on land and that it is only by releasing land which is in traditional hands that development will trickle down to the local community.
She explained that in the wake of the forthcoming Southern Province Tourism and Investment Expo, Government is looking for land in the district for investment purposes and that most of the land in the district was in traditional hands.
She further clarified that the district administration has engaged the different traditional leaders in the district to release some land and that the engagements have been fruitful.
“We need to benefit as Monze District from this Expo that is coming in our province. We should not be left behind in development because we will only have ourselves to blame if the Expo comes and no investors come here.
“We have so much potential as a district for investors to tap into that’s why we are asking for land from our traditional leaders for investment. We have the Lochinvar National park endowed with so much wild life including being the exclusive home to the Kafue Lechwe making our district a potential destination for tourists.
“We are also number one in terms of cattle population which we need to take advantage of and bring in investors who will start adding value to our cattle products thereby creating jobs for local people. We are talking about diversifying our economic activities so that we can withstand the effects of climate change. Those are just a few examples of what the district is endowed with,” she said.
And Gondwe said the Expo can be regarded as a way of sowing a seed of development in the district and that the district needs to be opened up to outsiders saying the Expo was the best forum that can sale the district to potential investors.
He said the district has untapped riches which needs to be exploited and the beneficiaries will be the local communities.
Meanwhile Kanchele observed that the Expo will attract not only leaders and decision makers from within the country but that international investors and entrepreneurs will also come to see what the province has to show case.
He explained that Expos have been used to find solutions to challenges affecting communities hence the need for the people of Monze to put their heads together and find the best way of attracting investment which would help alleviate poverty in the district.
He gave an example of Luapula Province where the first Expo was held saying “our friends are benefiting from hosting the first ever exposition as small scale cassava farmers are now supplying their produce to Zambia Breweries while Luapula Sugar which hit the market last month has created hundreds of jobs for local communities in the province.”
The trio who are Committee members for the District Expo were on radio to sensitize local communities in Monze about the forthcoming Southern Province Tourism and Investment Exposition which takes place in Livingstone from 14th to 21st September, 2019.