Economist and Researcher Lubinda Haabazoka has called for a national indaba to discuss the unbundling of ZESCO Limited and INDENI Petroleum if reports going round about their purported unbundling is true.
Dr. Haabazoka said that such moves need national consensus before they are taken because the country and its people need to be well informed about the possible benefits and repercussions.
In a statement obtained by Q-News, Dr Habazooka recalled that the unbundling and privatization of ZCCM some years back has seen Zambia lose grip over its mineral resources.
Dr Habazooka said that the unbundling of INDENI will give Oil Marketing Companies an upper hand in the importation of finished stock and the government will be held at ransom with no room to maneuver around.
Dr. Habazooka said that the unbundling of ZESCO will produce duplicate positions with different people performing the same roles, hence a recipe for confusion.
Meanwhile, a Business and political Analyst, Francis Chipili, has said that the unbundling of ZESCO is most likely to hurt ordinary people and will further slow down the nationwide electrification.
Mr. Chipili said that Zambia doesn’t have the infrastructure to separate the operations of ZESCO as some parts of the country are way far away from the national grid infrastructure, adding that ZESCO is a strategic national asset whose unbundling must never be done in a hurry just to appease the IMF and or other interested imperialists.
Mr. Chipili argued that the larger part of Zambia has no ZESCO and or other hydropower infrastructure connectivity, meaning that the majority of the private sector that would be interested in acquiring commercial rights from ZESCO business units will be centered on those which are actually commercially viable, thereby disadvantaging the rural and far away places.
Mr. Chipili said that the country needs a Zambia that is 100 percent connected to the national grid infrastructure and that one of the reasons the agricultural settlement concept has not worked is the lack of electricity and good roads network.
The IDC released the following statement regarding on ZESCO
IDC ANNOUNCEMENT ON ZESCO
The Industrial Development Corporation has announced plans to restructure state power utility ZESCO.
Through a tender published in the Daily Mail of Tuesday, January 4th 2022, the IDC wants to engage a Consultant who will undertake financial and operational restructuring of ZESCO.
The IDC says the Consulant should also assess the possibility of segregating ZESCO’s main divisions such as generation, transmission and distribution into separate units.
IDC stated that the splitting of ZESCO should not only provide financial relief by disposing off loss making assets but will also enhance control of ZESCO’s efficiencies.
IDC also wants the Consultancy to improve ZESCO’s credit worthiness through a review of the current and contingency debts with a view to restructuring the outstanding debts as well as formulate loans restructuring plans and strategies.
The Consultant is also expected to provide plans on financial turn around of ZESCO and return the company to profitability through the review of all income streams, operating costs and expenses and balance sheet.
Bids for the consultancy should be sent through to the IDC not later than 28th January 2022.
Another talkshow for talking industry. ZCCM was so mismanaged just the same way ZESCO is today. It was losing 1 million dollars per day and relying the the government treasury to keep afloat. It successor ZCCM- ih has failed to keep afloat a quarry, Ndola Lime. They lost 200m USD of dividends to a bogus Italian kiln supplier. I urge Mr Lubinda to go and set up his own energy company and contribute something tangible to Zambia than endless talk. Commercialise ZESCO and let rural electrification authority and ZNS address issues of rural Electrification and roads. No need for indabas.
Oh please, ANOTHER national indaba. Mr Haabazoka, Zesco is in dire straits mainly because of the corrupt and incompetent president Edgar China Lungu’s treatment of the incumbent, and splitting up the entity is the right and only way to go about it. But I am not going to wait for the ten years of delay that is now coming: my solar system is working fine thank you and I will never buy any more Zesco units.
So what does that engagement entail? Kudyelapo ka? We have reports and feasibility studies kudala imwe a cimbwi. Just usher in your local experts to study those reports. Ma methods for swindling are exhausted. Stop it!
There is no need for an indaba, there is no vacuum, there is a government in place. More over the risk of mistakenly picking PFs non workable ideas are very high in the indaba. Your PF grounded the economy of this country after inheriting a fairly decent economy from the MMD, that is not in dispute for sure
Thanks Lubinda. Your call is timely. We have people in Zambia today who still think we can’t manage our own assets, h² is one of them.
More people will lose their jobs at Zesco because of h²’s shattered mind bent at privatizing everything and all because of IMF.
As it stands IMF rules as h² watches. Sovereignty is gone.
The story of unbundling ZESCO has been around for nealy 30 yrs now.Several studies have been done on this line of thoughts with several people in ZESCO ,Energy Minisstry,ERB travelling all over the world to look at various models .Reports are all over gathering dust in some offices.
Come on Zambia lets do it once and for all but with alot off caution otherwise you will wonder why the other regimes had challenges taking it up.
VARIOUS RESOURCES needed & enormously capital intensive ,
Best of Luck
IMF bail out deal looks obnoxious. It stinks in my nostrils!! Finally IMF has found a strategic partner, Bally and his subordinates, to privatize the remaining strategic national assets, ZESCO and INDENI. By the end of their 5 year mandate, ZAMTEL will have gone too. Nipano tuli!!!
No way doctor H. No Indaba has come up with any solution except paying out allowances and upkeep to participants. Forget it. Let them sell INDENI. Good thing in ZAMBIA we have a way of firing arrogant governments.
New Dawn government has no choice but to unbundle Zesco. This is one of the unwritten preconditions of the IMF loan.
IMF is not interested on how Zambia can get more taxes from the Mines. IMF doesn’t care about the poor.
What is the mandate of IMF?
Who designed and created IMF?
Who benefits from IMF profits?
IMF doesn’t care for the Poor.
Why isn’t IMF advising on how government can benefit from the Mines?
HH is pro Western, don’t expect much resistance in the unbundling of Zesco.
There’s no provision for those in government to consult those outside of that structure for any decisions that they make. Even if the Minister decided to be generous and heed Lubinda’s call, there’s no guarantee that the outcome of Lubinda’s indaba will be binding on the Minister. If Cabinet has already decided, that decision was made based on a working paper that comprised the Cabinet Memo. It’s not at this stage that stakeholders like ECZ make submissions. As outgoing ECZ President Lubinda knows when Government consults the various stakeholders. This is an empty call
Please restructure all non working infrastructure, we can’t continue living in poverty by maintaining the status quo, what needs to be changed has to be changed. We just have to be innovative unlike in the past. We don’t want the indeni stories again where the thing was just gaining dust with the government then just looking at it. This is the time for think tanks with tangible solutions. Pick ideas from who ever can assist including the IMF, we are in a global village
How does a PF cadre call for an indaba. I am sure it has not yet sunk that PF is out of the equation. No arguments like you are a Zambian and can contribute, no ways, because PF was rejected on August 12, so where do you even draw your mandate to call for an indaba. Zambia wants to move forward now, we have stagnated a lot as a country since 2011
The euphoria that I see here from those supporting the unbundling of ZESCO is the same euphoria that greeted the privatization of the mines and parastatals that Zambia went through in the 1990s. But as former UNZA lecturer Professor Morris Szeftel observed in his wrtings about the privatization of the 1990s, those in government used their insider positions to sell off some of our state assets to themselves and foreign companies at knock-down prices. For instance, we still remember the sale of assets like the former ZCCM Manchinchi Bay lodge to former local government minister late Bennie Mwiinga who introduced his nephew HH to Chiluba’s MMD government. In the case of the sale of some of the state assets to foreign companies, we will not know to this day the kick-backs that some of those…
…in government had deposited in their off-shore accounts and how they used these to buy properties abroad. It is the desire for such kick-backs and not national interest that drives many African politicians when it comes to privatization
He should have asked for an indaba when his cronies the PF were in power and milking ZESCO.
The UPND urgently need to unbundle ZESCO which has been poorly run and is inefficient.No need to keep ZESCO in its current form.
Bashi Chite if mismanagement is the only problem then there is no need to sell our national assets. We removed PF because of mismanagement of national assets. We employed HH on 12th August, 2021 to arrest the mismanagement by employing prudent and ethical management and not to sell the few remaining assets. There is sense in what Habazoka has stated. What we need to do is to have the right structure and number of employees with an effective management. You can not develop a country if your nationals do not own anything otherwise the same story of losses will continue. Running away from a problem by selling is not fixing.
@Mutulangóma, Zamtel ha gone already to Lap Green. Sata abrogated it and Zambia is paying through the nose for that botched deal
@Kopala. Sell the assets to credible Zambian nationals not multinationals. CEC was doing well and is still keeping afloat. Vendatta has not only wrecked KCM but are owing 140m USD to CEC. Can you imagine how much govt treasury would have bled if KCM was GRZ owned? Let’s keep coffers from govt treasury for schools, hospitals, roads etc instead of wasting them on wasteful parastatals and useless indabas. There is too much of a sense of entitlement among us and a lack of patriotism that we cannot manage nationally owned enterprises. Only Zambians that are ready to dig deep in their own pockets should be given an opportunity to operate the enterprises. Forget about these PhD academics and civil servants. There place is in universities and govt departments not managing businesses. Business…
Business is cut throat and ruthless
There are people with the right capacity and competency who have been elected to sort out the mess Zambia was put in, in the last ten years , and the train is already in motion. Solutions are abound and we are already witnessing progress and an indaba is surely not one of the solutions
disastor is rooming in the new dawn govt.All assets are about to be sold.wait and see
@Bashi Chite- we are almost on the same line of thought. We can sell to credible Zambians and ensure such companies are run professionally by Zambians who i believe care for Zambia more than the multi nationals. Imagine if KCM was sold to Zambians in the same mold as CEC the story would have been different. Vendata (i prefer calling them vendetta) invested very little if anything in KCM and managed to recoup their investment without investing a single dime in the company. I believe if this company was properly managed by ZAMBIAN’S with morals not the PF type and willing to follow the rules of corporate governance the same profits Vendanta recouped could have been used to put back the company back to a road to success. Take time to find out from people who have worked for KCM who…
@ Bashi Chite- who eventually taught the job to foreigners and were later discarded. If run prudently the GRZ coffers were going to swell instead of bleeding.
We have water falls, other countries do not have water falling over the height. We have copper, cobalt, manganese and other things required to produce hydropower . Hydropower is cheaper to produce than coal power. Hydropower is forever and can not be depleted like coal power. We have million Zambians who managed A pluses in mathematics and sciences at tertiary level. We are favored with conditions for solar power. We are useless to surrender Zesco to foreign companies. Zambians chest up, look up and look aggressive. UPND dream is sour. Are we in a coma?
Whether indaba or whatever as long as this PF cadre lubinda is nowhere near anything to do with the running of zesco or any other company for that matter.
The argument that unbundling ZESCO will make it difficult to electrify rural areas ignores the fact that with ZESCO as a vertically integrated utility the electricity coverage in rural areas is only 3%.
Comments are closed.