The CNMC Luanshya Copper Mines employees who were quarantined by the Chinese Firm for over five months have been released.
According to a statement issued by Kirby Kaoma Musonda, the NDC Deputy Media Director, the employees were released yesterday following the intervention of Roan Member of Parliament Honourable Joseph Chishala.
Two weeks ago during the Vice President’s question time in parliament, the Roan lawmaker asked the government through the Vice President if they were aware about the quarantined employees at the mine due to COVID-19, but the Vice President’s response was that the government was not aware of it.
On 30th September 2020 the Roan Member of parliament visited the Ministry of Labour and had a meeting with the permanent secretary who promised that on a Saturday 3rd October 2020 they will together with the MP visit the mine to handle the issue.
As per their promise yesterday the 3rd October 2020 CNMC management was paid a prompt visit.
The entourage consisted of Mr charles Muwowo provincial labour commissioner, Mr Kaziya chanda Permanent Secretary ministry of labour, Mr Maloma Chiwezi provincial senior labour officer and they were accompanied by Roan Member of parliament Honorable Joseph Chishala.
Upon arrival at the mine the Chinese management scampered in all directions and left the mine site.
The entourage immediately started doing their inspection and they were in shock to see how the Chinese company had been keeping employees who were quarantined.
The Chinese firm was ordered immediately to release the employees and the entourage promised to visit the mine the next day on the 5th October 2020 and requested to meet all the Chinese management.
The employees who were spoken to thanked the Roan Member of parliament and the entourage for coming to their aid and releasing them from what they called SOBIBO.
The community hearing that the Roan MP and his entourage was at the mine site attending to the quarantined miners, the community ambushed the gates of the mine site to try and make a glimpse on what was happening in the mine while chanting slogans of Jubilation and said (Akana Kambwili nako nimbwili), a son of a leopard his also a leopard.
One of the wife’s of the miners spoken to was very happy and had this to say. (we are very happy that the Honorable member of Parliament Honorable Joseph Chishala has heard our cries and has come to our rescue. We have not been with our husbands for months now and seeing that they are out today, we can only thank God for what is doing through Honorable Joseph Chishala.
A lot of leaders has been telling us lies that they will make sure our husbands are released from quarantine, but it was all lies. We have been following the Honourable MP’s debate in parliament and he has always been pushing for this issue. Today we thank God it has come to pass.
We also take this opportunity ,as I stand here on behalf of others families to also thank the Labour Commissioner and the Labour Permanent Secretary and his entourage for the good job done. Said one of the miners wife’s.
The Roan Member of parliament Honourable Joseph Chishala spoke to the media and has since appealed to the government to put in strict measures on investors who come to invest in Zambia to follow laid down procedures on things which has to do with the welfare of the employees.
The Roan Lawmaker further said, these Investors are making a lot of money and yet what they are paying our own Zambia’s is peanuts and I can only call this as a joke, Honourable Chishala said.
We cannot have a situation were our own brothers are leaving in their own country like slaves this is unacceptable and should not be tolerated.
The Roan MP has also called on the Ministry of Water Development Sanitation and Environmental Protection to immediately visit the mine and see to it that their is order at the mine. As the mine site is a sorry site for now.
Source: Lusaka Times