Following the devastating incident at the Chingola slag dump, which resulted in the loss of lives among numerous young individuals, the Vedanta Must Return Community Campaign Movement is calling on the government to accelerate the transition of Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) from the Provisional Liquidator to a Management Board.
The movement, comprised of various organizations from both Chingola and Chililabombwe, expressed deep sorrow over the loss of young lives who were, in their pursuit of a better life, hopeful for a functional KCM mine.
The tragedy highlights the struggles faced by youths in Chingola and, by extension, Zambia, as they seek opportunities for economic betterment.
Chishala Mwamba, the Movement Coordinator, emphasized that the best way to honor the memory of the deceased is to revamp KCM swiftly. The call comes amidst a broader push for governmental action to address high unemployment rates in Chingola and Chililabombwe.
While acknowledging the efforts of the Minister of Mines, Hon. Paul CC Kabuswe, in the mining sector, the movement urges authorities to prioritize the KCM transition process.
They commend recent milestones, such as finding an Equity Partner for MOPANI, the return of Vedanta to KCM, and the impending opening of shaft 28 in Luanshya. However, they believe more can be done to accelerate the process and prevent future tragedies.
The Movement Coordinator stressed that a speedy transition is essential to breathe new life into KCM, creating employment opportunities and averting potential incidents like the recent one in Chingola.
The campaigners are calling on the government to heed the cries of the people and expedite the transitioning process in the KCM deal.
As the community mourns their fallen brothers, the movement awaits a response from the government, hoping that their pleas for swift action will be heard.
They stand united, hoping for the souls of the departed to rest in eternal peace as they await meaningful change and progress in their region.