Thursday, June 13, 2024

President Lungu Commissions Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe international airport, promises to embark on Lusaka-Ndola Dual Carriage as next project

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President Edgar Lungu has yesterday commissioned the 397 million United States dollar Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe International Airport in Ndola on the Copperbelt Province.

Speaking during commissioning, President Lungu said the airport has been constructed on a government-to-government loan facilitated by the Exim Bank of China.

Mr Lungu has since thanked the Chinese President, Xi Jinping and the people of China for providing the necessary financing for the infrastructure.

The head of state said the construction of the airport, located 20 kilometers west of Ndola is in line with government’s aspirations of transforming Zambia into an Aviation Hub.

President Lungu said Government is fully committed to driving the country’s development agenda and harnessing the country’s economic potential.

“During the project phase, a total of 3,023 direct and 1,478 indirect jobs were created. I am happy to report that our local contractors benefitted through subcontracting from the main contractor. I am reliably informed that as Zambia Airports Corporation Limited commences operations, there will be opportunities for restaurants, retail outlets and duty-free shops in the terminal, apart from the hotel,” President Lungu said.

“Your Government has again delivered another of its promises that further positions our country for growth. The aviation subsector being what it is, is subject to significant regulatory oversight. The immediate period going forward is the last mile in the journey to getting the airport certified for operations,” He said.

The President added that local contractors benefitted through sub-contracting, from Avic International, who are the main contractors of the project.

Mr. Lungu said the airport will also provide opportunities for other businesses.

“I am reliably informed that as Zambia Airports Corporation Limited commences operations, there will be opportunities for restaurants, retail outlets and duty-free shops in the terminal, apart from the hotel,” he said.

The President also disclosed that plans are underway for realizing Airfreight cargo potential, route development and other business opportunities on the airport’s land.

Mr Lungu said this is in line with Zambia’s Seventh National Development Plan agenda of taking development closer to the people.

He implored various agencies involved in the process to ensure required standards, so that safety and security for passengers are upheld.

Mr Lungu called for speedy operationalization of the new state-of-the-art facility.

“I urge Zambia Airports Corporation and the Civil Aviation Authority to complete the operational certifications so that operations can commence,” Mr. Lungu said.

The New Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe International Airport consists of a 3.5 kilometer runway, taxi ways and an apron.

Other features include a 2 million passengers per annum, capacity terminal building, a cargo terminal and an equipped air traffic control tower.

The airport also houses a rescue and fire station, navigational equipment, a commercial complex and a hotel.

President Lungu at the Commissioning of the Simon Mwansa kapwepwe
President Lungu at the Commissioning of the Simon Mwansa kapwepwe

Meanwhile, President Lungu said Government will soon embark on the ambitious project to turn the Lusaka – Ndola highway into a dual carriageway.

He said this project is long awaited and it will not only reduce accidents on the highway but it will give business to local contractors who will also employ many of the young people.

“The projects we commenced at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport and here at the new Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe Mwansa International Airport are pivotal in facilitating the country’s tourism and industrialization agenda. This infrastructure is key in elevating our development agenda to another level,” President Lungu said.

“Travellers to Ndola can now experience a world-class look and feel here at the new Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe international airport. It is a launchpad to the rest of the Copperbelt and the northern tourism circuit. This airport, as well, is in close proximity to the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Katanga province thereby improving business between the two countries,” he said.

29 COMMENTS

  1. So in other words Lungu has promised to raise Zambia’s debt by $1.2 Bn ,right ? I guess its elections time folks.

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  2. I just replaced my toilet and I would like to invite His Excellency to come and commission it.
    It seems like that’s what he only does these days, commission things.
    I painted it green by the way

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  3. No Mr President, you will not be part of the Ndola – Lusaka dual carriage road project. We tired of your blotted costs which you & your minions are enriching yourselves on. 12th Aug awaits

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  4. Unfortunately bwana after next week you back to Chawama and you will have enough time to a attend to court …. we need serious people

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  5. Thank you Govt for this masterpiece, surely this is good development. Indeed, the Lsk-Ndola road is way overdue we can’t wait for it to start for the benefits to start trickling to the masses; workers on the project and of-course road users. I also wish to commend you the PF govt for your boldness, this is a trait that lacked in the MMD govt of not embarking on projects they themselves planned for fear of retribution from the people because here in Zambia we oppose everything and only appreciate them later when completed.
    As for next weeks elections, I will vote for the Patriotic Front because based on what I have read in their 27 chapters manifesto am convinced their roadmap is ideal for the Zambia I desire for my children and children’s children. I wish you success in the elections…

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  6. SO this is another project that has been commissioned without being operational. In a normal situation the airport is supposed to to have gone tests, then operate for sometime and once all the systems are certified ready then there is grand commissioning with flights going to different destinations in short all the facilities become operational for use by the general pubic not this chipantepante type of commissioning to deceive people that the one Mighty PF is working.

  7. Be grateful, just because you have never been on a plane or driven your own car to appreciate this development. Don’t let politics choke your sense of thanks and gratitude. Thank you Mr President, May God continue to Bless you and your administration, and keep you, and shine his face upon you and be gracious to you and give you peace. When they curse let God Bless. Amen.

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  8. We will continue the projects on a cheaper budget, thank you for the jobs done thus far. On national interest, its time you and your cohorts to step back.

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  9. This airport is nice, job well done! We want to the same on NW, Western, Southern and Eastern so that we can start flying around this beautiful country. As a basic standard, we need each province to have University, Major hospital, Airport(because we are land linked) and a motorway standard road linking the provinces. These are the issues people want to see addressed not those horrible roadshows or whatever you’re calling ati campaigning.

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  10. Thank you Mr President Zambia had become a ramshackle and now in the last 10 years we have witnessed what it means to run Govt. We are proud of the foundation you have laid and we look forward to building a strong and resilient economy which will bring prosperity and a nation in which our children, their children and their children will be proud of. It takes exceptional leadership to transform a nation that’s anchored on bold decisions. Its not always about food today and narrow visions but strong fiundation that ensures generational prosperity. That’s what generational thinkers are known for. Alebwelelapo pamupando

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  11. We are grateful to God for any political leader who invests in infrastructure for people of land to use whether public schools, universities, hospitals, roads, airports, etc. This is what the Lord desires & its way country’s wealth reach both rich & poor. This is what equalises people rich & poor. Any politician who promises only cheap things you go to buy from shops to eat & flush in toilet is not doing country any favour. Foreign owners of shops get richer & we may live another day with zero change in our lives except for full stomach. Foreign owner is real winner. That’s how Esau gave up his blessing & 1st born right to Jacob, over stew & hunger issues Gen25:30. We should never be cheated as nation because God has already revealed these things to us. God Bless Zambia.

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  12. I agree with John Chandwe 100%, come 12th August will cast my vote for ECL and PF. God bless Zambia. NO change.

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  13. Edgar China Lungu on yet another ribbon cutting event – on a project that the country can’t afford. The Chinese have paid for it – and what have you given them in return? ZNBC is already gone, and Zesco is already half gone. Is there actually anything left that you haven’t squandered away? You truly are the WORST and dishonest president the country has EVER had. Thankfully it’s only five days to voting you OUT!

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  14. Why oh why must our president always give the PF party salute everywhere he goes, even though he insists he is president for all Zambians, irrespective of political affiliations ? I find this very misleading. How can our president claim credit for a project which is totally funded by the Chinese government ?

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  15. Total wastage. No national airline since 94. How many international flights do we entertain.

    This convict is busy making deals on commission and corruption. Very soon will facing the courts together with his minion KZ.

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  16. Zambia is for ever getting better. When we declared Zambia as a christian nation, we sought God guidance. Now God is with us. Homosexuality is satanic, through violence Satan planned to bring a leader to destroy Christianity. It is failing because God is with us. As of now, ECL is a better candidate. HH is wealthy but his in-law stays in a thatched house, he has plenty of land, he dribbled deceased farm land, privatization teared zambia economy, he took advantage to enrich himself. Know him by his actual deeds.

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  17. @Uncle Tembo, #2. Please just use your toilet wisely and utilise the same wisdom when voting. The Airport has linked Kitwe, Ndola and Luanshya into one region reducing transport time. Soon, KK Airport will be completed. Just because UPND did not build, then it should be trashed needing ECL commissioning? Some people will choke with envy.

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  18. You get a loan from the bank and buy biscuits and bread then your children are dancing ati dad mwabomba. PF have stolen a lot of money form the same loans they go in the name building infrastructure. I will clap for you when you pay back the loans. They cant do without loans?

  19. Drive on the Lusaka-Ndola road and u get the impression that some people are being allowed to erect buildings as close to the road as possible. They want to get compensation from government because their properties will hv to be knocked down to allow for road expansion.

  20. No tangible long term connection between these projects built on loans to actual improvement of people’s lives. If only they were being built from local resources – from value produced in industries employing a lot of the currently unemployed.

  21. We have thus far devoted a great deal of time and space to PF failures to address the unprecedented levels of poverty, inequality, unemployment, corruption, national debt, declining economic growth, and so forth. The Republican president, however, has devoted his time to commissioning and re-commissioning projects initiated during the reign of other presidents and funded mainly by our development partners, threatening to cage his political opponents on imaginary charges, showering gifts and donations on chieftains and other members of society, and soliciting for endorsements of his candidature from chiefs and members of the clergy. The people’s quality of life, though, extends beyond these issues. I am right now watching the Olympics in Tokyo – a young lady by the name Sifan Hassan,…

  22. … Kenyans, Ethiopians, and athletes from other countries are competing at their highest levels. But Zambians cannot enjoy such luxuries due to the fact that most of them do not have TV sets and those who have such electronic devices are trapped by ZNBC that has a monopoly on nation-wide programming. Talk about the general lack of places or parks where citizens can go for relaxation and rejuvenation! Socialist institutions like the IDC (an imitation of INDECO) cannot invest in the provision of such facilities; and neither can private investors for fear that the government may eventually decide to nationalize or expropriate their businesses. Whither my beloved country?

  23. You are right and what makes me sad are priorities in many productive sectors which go unfunded. In fact look at the following:
    Yes we welcome this development but with serious questions.
    1. Why build a new airport leaving the existing one?
    2. Was this project really necessary when less than 100,000 people, which is less than 1% of the Zambian population will benefit directly from it with insignificant downstream effects?
    3. The nation is entitled to know what the original priced BOQ was and the final actual cost including all variations and their justifications
    4. Alternative best utilisation of these wasted resources would have been to make quality foot and cycle paths and roads 30 kilometers on each major and busy outlet in each town from rural areas beginning with Livingstone…

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