Kitwe Chamber of Commerce vice president, Emmanuel Mbambiko has urged youths that will benefit from the Black mountain to responsibly use the money they will get to start up sustainable business enterprises.
Speaking in an interview in Kitwe yesterday, Mr. Mbambiko said mining operations at the black mountain are a short term engagement as such beneficiaries from the empowerment initiative should be looking at funding sustainable businesses using the proceeds from there.
“In the past, the tendency by youths is that they use what they realize from the black mountain to drink and buy cars which do not last, you cannot call this scavenging empowerments because it does not move them from poverty, these youths should be given sustainable empowerment instead,” He said.
Mr. Mbambiko has since urged government to deploy these youths in need of employment to new mines such as the areas where gold has been discovered and allow them to pick gold on behalf of government and get a salary for the work.
He further called on government to remove the people that benefited from the black mountain in past so that new ones can also benefit.
He noted that if that is not done, the same people will continue benefiting from the facility at the expense of others.
Mr. Mbambiko also suggested that Kitwe council can also engage the youths to form cooperatives that can be collecting markets and bus station fees so that they can ensure sanity in these trading places.
He said the council can just be monitoring so that the cooperatives engaged does not engage in misappropriations.
“ For the first time in a long time councils have been given the power to collect market and bus stations fees but we do not seen to know where this money is going because these public places have remained dirty, youths can be engaged to collect these fees and ensure that these areas are clean,” He said.
The handover of the 30 per cent of the black mountain to the youths and women is one way of empowering the youths and women.
And Wusakile Ward Councilor, Charles Silomba said he is yet to see how the projected empowerment of the youths and women will help to eradicate poverty among the people on the Copperbelt.
Mr. Silomba who is a Patriotic Front Councilor appealed to the New Dawn government to stick to its planned way of empowering the people unlike serving the interest of its few party officials.
“The initiative looks good, we hope it will achieve its goals and I will be the happiest being the councillor for Wusakile where the black mountain is, if the people get the empowerment as expected,” Mr. Silomba said.
The youths and women have been told to form cooperatives through which they can be empowered with financial capital from the black mountain operations proceeds.