Youth and Sports Minister Chishimba Kambwili has handed over cheques worth K1 million to 40 youth clubs in the North Western province.
ZANIS reports that speaking during the handover ceremony in Solwezi today, Mr Kambwili appealed to the beneficiaries to use the funds for the intended purpose.
The Minister told the youths that the funds were meant to empower them so that they can become responsible citizens who will contribute meaningfully to the development of their families and the nation at large.
He said government through his ministry will not tolerate the misuse of empowerment funds because it was tax payers’ money which must be paid back at all costs.
Mr Kamwbili said the prosecuting authorities will not hesitate to bring to book all those who use the money for other purposes.
And Mr Kambwili has lashed out at the Zambian Watchdog and other online publications that have accused the current government of only empowering PF cadres.
He has challenged the online media to substantiate their claims as government has been transparent in the selection of beneficiaries.
Mr Kambwili said neither him nor his ministry has ever taken part in the selection process but had instead entrusted the process to the respective technical committees.
Meanwhile, Mr Kambwili is disappointed with the selection of beneficiaries of youth empowerment programmes on the Copperbelt Province as the majority were drawn from Ndola and Kitwe leaving out youths from other districts.
Speaking in Ndola when he handed over cheques to youth clubs today, the Youth and Sports Minister said youths from all districts in the country must benefit from the youth empowerment funds in order to better their lives.
Mr Kambwili also urged all loan beneficiaries to pay back the money on time so that other youths could also benefit from the empowerment funds.