—————North-Western province Permanent Secretary, Amos Malupenga has implored stakeholders in Solwezi to demand for accountability from Solwezi Municipal Council for the money the local authority receives from the mining industries.
Mr. Malupenga said it is the onus of the local people and stakeholders in Solwezi to take the local authority to task to explain what they are doing with the money they get from the mines if people cannot see any tangible development.
The North-Western province Permanent Secretary said this in response to concerns raised by Solwezi stakeholders that despite the mines in Solwezi paying substantial money to the council, they are not seeing appreciable developmental activities in the area.
Some stakeholders even suggested that the mine should suspend remitting money to the council for even one year but instead carry out some developmental projects like tarring township roads themselves because the council has failed to do so.
This was during the dissemination of the 2012 and 2013 Zambia Extractive Industries transparency Initiative (ZEITI) reconciliation reports workshop held at Solwezi lodge in Solwezi today.
Meanwhile, Mr Malupenga said Zambia has made considerable improvement in compliance with EITI reconciliation reports which shows how many extractive companies pay to government in form of taxes and other payments and how much government receives thereby promoting transparence and accountability in management of extractive industry.
He said the 2012 and 2013 reports have shown that the country has an increase in the number of reporting companies, from 26 to 30, increase in government revenue from K 7.53 billion in 2011 to K7.79 and K 8.20 billion in 2012 and 2013 respectively.
Speaking at the same occasion, Ministry of Mines, Energy and Water Development Human Resources and Administration Assistant Director, Movens Nswana implored civil society organizations to strengthen their monitoring and evaluation activities to ensure that proceeds from the extractive industry are utilized for the benefit of the intended communities.