Lands Ministry has power over Environmental Agency, ZEMA – Scott

scott - sata
scott - sata

VICE-PRESIDENT Guy Scott has said the Ministry of Lands has power to overturn the decision by the Zambia Environmental Management Agency (ZEMA) to award Zambezi Resources Limited mining rights in the Lower Zambezi National Park.
Dr Scott told Parliament yesterday that the Ministry of Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection was in charge of overseeing the functions of the ZEMA.
He, however, said Mwembeshi Resources, a subsidiary of Zambezi Resources of Australia, would only implement the mining project after full consultations and compliance with the Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) prescribed conditions and specifications.
Dr Scott said this in a ministerial statement on the contradictory statements issued by Tourism and Arts Minister Sylvia Masebo and her Lands counterpart, Harry Kalaba on the matter.
The statement followed a point of order raised by United Party for National Development (UPND) Member of Parliament (MP) for Monze Central, Jack Mwiimbu on the contradictory statements between the two ministers regarding the matter.
The Vice-President said in view of that, Government’s position on the Kangaluwi Copper Project to be undertaken by Mwembeshi Resources was as interpreted by the Minister of Lands, who had the mandate to state Government’s position after wide and extensive consultations.
Quoting Section 24 (1) of the ZAWA Act number 12 of 1998, Dr Scott said “any person who holds any mining rights in, over, under or in respect of any land comprised in a national park, may enter and exercise the same within the national park upon his giving prior written notice to the director-general of his intention to enter the national park and to so exercise his right in it and upon compliance with any conditions which the Authority may impose.”
He said Government could not elaborate the matter further as it was before the courts of law.
Meanwhile, Deputy Speaker, Mkhondo Lungu has urged Members of Parliament to respect proceedings of Parliamentary committees.