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Minister was wrong to declare CEC’s transmission and distribution lines as a common carrier, Court rules

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THE Lusaka High Court has quashed Energy Minister Matthew Nkhuwa’s decision to declare the Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC’s) transmission and distribution lines as a common carrier.

In her judgement delivered on Friday judge Elita Mwikisa noted that there was a failure on the part of the Minister to act with procedural fairness towards CEC.

She said Minister’s decision to declare CEC’s transmission and distribution lines as common carrier through the passing of S.I No.57 of 2020, had taken away CEC’s rights to negotiate terms and conditions of use of its infrastructure in view of the fact that any enterprise can use CEC’s infractructure at the wheeling charge that ERB has set, which CEC had argued was not cost effective.

“In fact, KCM has abrogated its contractual obligations under the Power Supply Agreement (PSA) to pay the debt owed to CEC amounting to USD 144 million. I agree with CEC that S.I No. 57 of 2020 is too wide in its application in that it affects all the applicant’s transmission and distribution lines instead of only affecting lines supplying power to KCM,” judge Mwikisa said.

She found that the minister’s decision to declare CEC’s distribution and transmission lines as a common carrier was not for purposes of the Act but was intended to assist KCM avoid the effect of section 43 of the Electricity Act.

Judge Mwikisa agreed with CEC that the Minister’s decision was meant to ensure continous supply of electricity power to KCM, despite being indebted to CEC.

“The Minister’s decision is ultra vires the provisions of section 15 (2) of the Act and therefore illegal. KCM failed to pay the debt of USD144 million and CEC has the right under section 43 (1) to discontinue the supply of power,” she further said.

She further said CEC was not fairly treated by the Minister who arbitrarily used his powers to declare its transmission and distribution lines as common carrier without giving CEC a chance to negotiate terms and conditions for the use of its infrastructure.

“All in all, I find that the applicant has succeeded on all grounds under order 53 rule 3 of the Rules of the Supreme Court. I accordingly quash the decision of the Minister of May 29, 2020, to declare the applicant’s transmission and distribution lines as a common carrier. Costs follow the event,” ruled judge Mwikisa.

In this matter, CEC which cited the Attorney General and the Energy Regulation Board (ERB) as respondents, was seeking a declaration that Nkhuwa’s decision dated May 29, 2020, to declare its transmission and distribution lines as common carrier was unlawful.

CEC wanted a declaration that the decision of the Minister of Energy to direct it to provide a wheeling path for Zesco Limited to supply power to KCM on terms directed by the Energy Regulation Board was illegal and therefore null and void.

It also wanted a declaration that the decision by the Director General of the Energy Regulation Board of May 31, 2020 to direct it to charge a wheeling tariff of US$5.84/kw/per month was illegal and therefore null and void.

CEC further wanted among others, an order to quash the said decisions and a further order to stop Nkhuwa from enforcing SI no.57 of 2020 as it is illegal.

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MultiChoice Showcase unveils exciting content that will make everyone’s must watch list in 2021

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ìAFTER a year of celebrating 25 years of enriching Zambian lives, Multichoice Zambia has unveiled a year of exciting television content during the hosting of the MultiChoice Content Showcase. The content showcase revealed exciting and thrilling content likely to make your TV screen a first companion for entertainment in 2021 and beyond.

The 2021 content showcase which highlights MultiChoice’s new product offerings, updates on technological innovations and local content investments, is a start of an exciting journey that comes with more captivating ways to excite viewers with content and innovations that resonate with their interests.

“MultiChoice has played a significant role in developing the local film industry through introduction of local channels as well as infrastructure investments,” said MultiChoice Zambia, Managing Director, Kobus Bezuidenhout. “Our footprint consists of 357 installers, 65 Agencies and over 700 touchpoints across the country. Through these investments, we have continued to be leaders not only in entertainment but in telling the African story.”

Speaking at the same occasion, MultiChoice Zambia, Chief Customer Officer, Mrs Leah Kooma said, “It remains essential that MultiChoice addresses consumer needs, create excellent content that Africans love and deliver it to our customers in a  way that reflects their viewing needs and what they want to watch, with the best-in-class technology and a personalised and compelling streaming experience.”

“We launched Showmax last year and provided our customers with the opportunity to access more exciting content. Our premium customers can access Showmax at no additional cost while our Compact Plus, Compact, Family and Access customers can access Showmax at a discount of 50% through Showmax Add to Bill,” said Mrs Kooma.

This year’s showcase which was held at MultiChoice Zambia head office, attracted special guests, filmmakers, artists, journalists, influencers and creative industry leaders. The attendants both physical and virtual were taken on a MultiChoice Zambia journey through the past, present and future of the company’s investments.

During the event, several MultiChoice achievements were highlighted which included the launch of Mwatipanga Campaign celebrating 25 years of MultiChoice, the launch of Absa Cup tournament in partnership with Absa bank, and an increase in new and exciting content channels in local productions on Zambezi Magic and One Zed as well as the newly launched HONEY, an Africa Lifestyle channel.

“The past year had its challenges but as a business, we learned to adapt to these challenges. I must proudly say that despite that, we as MultiChoice through our dear customers and the media achieved a lot,” said Mrs Chilufya Mwelwa, Head of Corporate Affairs, MultiChoice Zambia.

During the event it was announced that brand-new seasons were coming on Zambezi Magic and One Zed. Zambians can look forward to watching their favourite shows such as Makofi, Tuvwange, Uncle Limbani, Shi Mumbi and My Kitchen Party coming back to their screens.

On the list of achievements highlighted were notable investments in supporting the film industry through the MultiChoice Talent Factory (MTF). This year, MTF graduated seven students from Zambia. MTF inspires and nurtures talented young people to work in local creative industries, thereby generating local content. The students’ academic course was extended from 12 month to 18 months due to the pandemic. This additional time translated to the students walking away with not one but two qualifications, making them even more sought-after as they re-enter their respective local film and TV sectors as highly qualified industry professionals.

Speaking at the same function and giving highlights on local content, Chikombo Handahu, Head of Marketing, MultiChoice Zambia said, “On GOtv, we have our subscribers covered with premuim local content on One Zed with Shows such as Mpali, Tuvwange, Land Lady Meets Land Lord, Zuba, Shimumbi, Umutenge and Dorika. This year, we plan to continue exciting our customers with local content through One Zed on GOtv as well as our Access and Family Bouquet subscribers on DStv.”

“Other great shows to look out for include, Survivor South Africa Immunity Island S8 this April, which will be airing on MNet” and Carte Blanche, which is the award-winning magazine and actuality programme which goes into its 33rd season this June.”

“We have also a Brand-New Original Show this July called Reyka which follows a flawed but brilliant criminal profiler, Reyka Gama.” said – Handahu

 

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First Quantum Minerals Ltd statement on remediation of closed Bwana Mkubwa Mine site

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First Quantum Minerals Limited (“FQM”), the ultimate holding company of Kansanshi Mine Plc, Kalumbila Minerals Limited and First Quantum Minerals Operations Limited wishes to inform the public that it has ceased mining operations at Bwana Mkubwa Mine in Ndola (“Bwana Mkubwa Mine”) and commenced remediation and repurposing of the site.

Bwana Mkubwa Mine was the first new mining project in Zambia for FQM and the first licence to be issued by the Government of the Republic of Zambia since the enactment of the 1995 Mining and Minerals Act.

FQM remains the certificate of title holder of a 99-year lease in respect of lots F/416a/A and DF/416a/S where the Bwana Mkubwa Mine is located together with the surrounding areas (the “Land”). These certificates of title entitle FQM to surface rights over the Land in line with the provisions of the Mines and Minerals Development Act and property rights as per the provisions of the Constitution of the Republic of Zambia.

As part of its corporate social responsibility, FQM resolved and donated the former open pit area of the mine to Kafubu Water and Sanitation Company for purposes of water abstraction to supply surrounding industrial and residential developments. This area shall be formally sub-divided and handed over to the water utility company upon certification that the area is safe for use by the Mine Safety Department. The plant and Tailing storage facility have been transferred to another operator and FQM no longer holds any interests.

Part of the surface rights area remains under the control of Non-FQM small-scale Mining Licence holders of which two actively continue to undertake material recovery and mining on the Land pursuant to their respective mining rights with the specific consent of FQM for access.

FQM wishes to reiterate that as the bona fide title holder of the Land, it will continue to secure its interest in line with the company’s policy.

The public is, therefore, hereby notified that FQM has not appointed any agent to parcel out the Land or any portion of it and the public is advised to send all queries to FQM using the contact details set out below for any clarifications.

Contact:  First Quantum Mining and Operations Limited

Plot 3805, Zambia Way, Industrial Area

  1. O. Box 230022, Ndola.

Email:  Michael.Kabungo@fqml.com

Phone: +260963659543

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The value of the Zambezi: Putting together the puzzle pieces for sustainable investment

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By Nachilala Nkombo, WWF-Zambia Country Director, Kathleen Dominique, OECD Programme Lead Financing Water, and Andre Fourie, Global Director Water Sustainability, AB InBev.

Last month, the theme of World Water Day — “valuing water” — encouraged everyone to take a moment to consider what water means to each of us. The result was revealing – a kaleidoscope of diverse responses reflecting how the value of water manifests differently for different people and different communities from home and family life to cultural practices, businesses, health and well-being. These are incredibly important facets of the value of water. But it also raises the question about whether all these individual reflections are sufficient to illuminate a broader collective understanding of the centrality of river and water systems to economies, communities and ecosystems.

Water presents a paradox of the essential. It is a critical resource for societies and economies – even a life sustaining one for people and nature. This is true for the Zambezi river and the 32 million people in six Southern African economies that depend on it. Nevertheless, water continues to be chronically under-valued. Water usually only garners attention and investment when it is running out or has caused a disaster. Fortunately, we are starting to see a shift in how water is appreciated.

Companies are starting to move beyond a focus on water efficiency behind their own fence lines to addressing watershed-level water risks, investors are beginning to channel capital towards water-related investments and understanding how water risks can impact their portfolios, and governments are working to improve water policies, infrastructure and management to drive sustainable growth and ecosystem health .

However, these efforts remain too piecemeal and fragmented to guarantee long-term water security. Long-term, sustainable impact at scale remains elusive. Governments struggle with constrained budgets (in part due to the under-valuing and under-pricing of water) and may lack of capacity to manage water resources adequately.

Financiers typically have a narrow focus on a pipeline of bankable projects. And businesses are often focused on short-term water risks, rather than contributing to collective efforts to secure long-term water security. Again, the kaleidoscope of perspectives and interests does not easily translate into the broader collective action needed to secure this shared resource.

Building truly resilient watersheds — and resilient communities, economies and ecosystems — over the long-term requires that we seize the opportunity of rising awareness of the value of water, and growing interest from investors and corporate action on water stewardship in a strategic way. In short, we need a framework to distill these fragmented perspectives into a coherent vision and drive collection action.

Creating a global framework would likely add minimal value, as it would lack the context-based nuance needed to adequately address water challenges that are hyperlocal in nature. Instead, what would bring value is to bring an analytical perspective to individual basins and develop action frameworks that could serve as models and inspiration for businesses and governments to take the steps necessary to tackle shared water risks.

Zambia presents a unique and valuable local case study for appreciating the full value of water and the importance of addressing the emergent threats to water security. One of the fastest growing economies in Sub-Saharan Africa and blessed as a relatively water-abundant country, many of the activities driving Zambia’s  and regional economic growth are crucially dependent on the Zambezi River Basin. Nearly all of the country’s electricity already comes from hydropower. Other other key sectors such as agriculture, mining, fisheries, tourism and manufacturing are highly dependent on the health of natural freshwater systems that are part of the Zambezi basin.

Like many nations, Zambia is facing increasing water demand in line with a rapidly growing population and economy.  As in many parts of the world, climate change has already begun to impact rainfall patterns as well as the frequency and intensity of extreme events such as droughts and floods, contributing to energy challenges and food insecurity.  Finally, agricultural practices and insufficient wastewater treatment capacity are further limiting options for the long term availability of good quality water.

For a number of years WWF and AB InBev have been partnering to address critical water related risks in Zambia by developing blended finance approaches to encourage sustainable private sector-led investments that can transform landscapes. Specifically, Zambian Breweries Ltd, the local subsidiary of AB InBev, is working with WWF and the Kafue Flats Joint Action Group to deliver projects that address the current pressures on the Kafue landscape, a sub basin of the Zambezi river.

Through this partnership, WWF and AB InBev provided support to OECD to develop the just-published study “Strategic Investment Pathways: The Zambezi Basin case study” examining the critical nature of water resources and the enabling environment for investment to drive sustainable development in the Zambezi Basin.

Considering the importance of the Zambezi basin to Zambia and the regional economy,  the study outlines some of the key steps the Zambian government can take to catalyse the scaling up of private sector investment in the Zambezi Basin in a way that contributes to water security, and long term resilient and sustainable growth in a country that has been hard hit by Covid19, climate change and environmental degradation.

Promisingly, the study found that strong legal and policy frameworks for water management exist in Zambia; however, implementation remains a challenge. This situation is not unique to Zambia, so the study’s recommendations can easily translate across borders:

  • First, governments need to improve coordination of roles and responsibilities and enhance enforcement of existing legal and policy frameworks for water management, so as to provide incentives for the sustainable management of the resource.
  • Governments and public agencies can capture opportunities to strategically disperse existing funds to crowd in additional investments, ,enabling impact even in the face of limited budgets.
  • The private sector can support governments in scaling up investment, but bankable projects must be sequenced in a strategic investment pathway ton ensure that investments are both bankable – and beneficial – to communities, the environment and the economy. A strengthened enabling environment is a prerequisite to delivering benefits and financial returns over time.
  • Finally, these strategic investment pathways and associated efforts should be expressly linked and coordinated with the broader national development plans.

Ultimately, what’s clear is that in the water puzzle, all actors — public, private, NGO — have a piece to contribute and a role to play. This case study from the OECD provides a framework for the Zambian government, WWF and local corporate citizens such as Zambian Breweries to lead the way to leverage water in the Zambezi as an enabler for sustainable, inclusive economic growth. AB InBev and WWF are committed to supporting Zambia-led efforts towards a sustainable future in the Zambezi.

We will build on the global momentum on water stewardship to help create a world in which communities, businesses and nature  thrive together. The OECD continues work on strategic investment pathways as well as leading a dedicated platform for engagement on financing water – the Roundtable on Financing Water.

We all have a  golden collective opportunity to scale our impact and give longevity to the water projects we are investing in, but it starts with changing the way we think about—and act on- the value of water.

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Foxdale Forest – Phase 2 Selling

ZAMBIA: COVID-19 STATS

16 Apr 2021, 1:08 AM (GMT)

Zambia Stats

90,750 Total Cases
1,233 Deaths
88,414 Recovered

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