FQM to spend US $ 11.6m to resettle displaced families

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—The resettlement of 560 families displaced by the opening of Kalumbila Trident mining project in chief Musele’s area of Solwezi will cost First Quantum Minerals (FQM) US$11.6 million.

Community and stakeholder engagement officer, Alex Mapapayi, disclosed this in an interview with ZANIS recently.

Mr Mapapayi said initially the company was to spend US$10,762,147 to build 560 houses for resettlement, seven churches, a school and pay repatriation and disturbance allowances.

He said the money was also to pay transport allowance to relocate 194 families to pave way for the US$ 1.8 billion project.

However, Mr Mapapayi said government authorities were not happy with the size of the smallest housing units that were 19 meter square and asked the mine to increase the size to 28 meter square which has raised the cost of US$11.6 million.

He said the families were given options about where they wanted to be resettled, with some groups who are adapted to modern life choosing to settle at the Northern end of the mining operation closer to a new town being developed while those oriented to agriculture opted to settle on the Southern side.

He explained that those on the Northern part are also getting standard houses between 28 and 72 meter square area while those in the southern part will receive conservation agricultural support.

Mr Mapapayi said apart from 560 housing units, a school and seven churches, FQM was also sinking 20 boreholes to replace the 17 that fell within the active mining area.

He said those families who had livestock and assets for grain storage were also   provided with disturbance allowances.