- Goal Diggers
- Guest Diggers
Mopani must pay cost reflective tariffs or leave – CSPRBy Mirriam Chabala on 30 Aug 2017
Civil Society for Poverty Reduction (CSPR) Executive Director Patrick Nshindano says he would have already disconnected Mopani Copper Mines from electricity supply if he were the Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC) for refusing to pay tax.
In an interview yesterday, Nshindano said Mopani Copper mines could not be exempted from the upward adjustment of electricity tariffs because it was one of the largest consumers of the country’s energy.
Nshindano further advised Mopani to leave the country if it was not ready to comply with the country’s tax obligations.
“Mopani Copper Mines has no basis for actually refusing to realign the tariffs as was agreed in the tariff agreements. As a country we have agreed the direction we are going to take of adjusting the tariffs mainly because they were unsustainable at the point they were, but also because of the challenges that the country has faced in generating energy and we need to ensure that we invest. So a number of reforms are going on which includes revision of tariffs and there is no way that the mining sector can be exempted from the revision of tariffs because they are the largest consumers of energy in this country,” Nshindano said.
“If that exemption is done on the mines then that means only the poor Zambian citizens will have to pay for electricity and there is no way that Zambians can be subsiding big multinational corporations like Mopani Copper Mines. So it’s only inevitable that the revisions are done and undertaken. So the refusal on the part of Mopani Copper Mine to comply is illogical because any responsible corporate needs to realise that we should not only be interested in making profit. When you are investing in a country you need to get a win-win situation where there are benefits that accrue to you as well as benefits that should accrue to the nation.”
Nshindano charged that Mopani was an irresponsible investor which never cared about the interests of Zambians.
“Mopani is on record of having not paid corporate income tax for a very long time mainly because they were not declaring any profits but further to that, there are a number of allegations that have been levelled against Mopani which border on issues to do with tax avoidance as well as environmental degradation. So all these are cases that are there yet to be proved. But all along, what we have been calling for as civil society organisations is that we need responsible investors in this country who have the interest of the nation as well and also those who realise that Zambia needs to come first and avoid these opec agreements that make it difficult for Zambia to benefit from it’s natural resources. The mining sector is one of them,” he said.
Shindano advised the Copperbelt’s Mining giant to leave the country if it did not want to comply with payment of tax.
“We have continued to grapple with the mining sector in terms of taxation and it’s contribution even when you talk about job creation, the mines that are even threatening are actually the lowest employers because of the mechanization and continues to do that including Mopani itself. When Mopani took over the operation of the mines if you compare the number of employees it had and the number of employees it retained is actually a fraction on its own, so we need to ensure that the interests of Zambians are protected and thats why we as CSPR are putting up a call to action not only to our fellow civil society but also to the citizens to be able to rise against such injustices in our society,” said Nshindano.
“It is completely unfair and uncalled for, if Mopani doesn’t want to operate in Zambia let’s find another equitable partner because Zambia has been mining for a very long time and as country, it’s about time we realised that unless we have substantial shares in these mines, we will just remain with pits and these investors would have gone but also the generation that is yet to come will suffer.”
About Mirriam Chabala
Mirriam covers current affairs and writes in-depth feature articles on social issues.
Email: mirriam [at] diggers [dot] news
- We’ve engaged church leaders to persuade Chishala on Bill 10 – NDC - 3 Apr 2020
- Declaration of lockdown requires legal backing, Magande tells Lungu. - 3 Apr 2020
- Introduce SI to stop landlords from collecting rentals, Changala urges govt - 3 Apr 2020
- Don’t reject Bill 10 before you test it, urges Serenje MMD MP - 3 Apr 2020
- ECZ proceeds with Nangula ward by-election despite COVID-19 - 3 Apr 2020
- COVID-19 is airborne? Why is Ministry of Health misleading us? (12,694 views)
- I am under quarantine, but fine - Davies Chama (4,549 views)
- Kampyongo says accusing him of being in quarantine is like alleging that Diggers editor is HIV positive (4,132 views)
- Why whip patrons if there's no lockdown? (3,501 views)
- We’re already on lockdown – Lungu (3,341 views)
- Govt will start distributing free masks – Chilufya
- Absa re-opens Centro Mall branch
- Kampyongo, Ng’andu released from quarantine after testing negative to COVID-19 – Chilufya
- COVID-19 is airborne? Why is Ministry of Health misleading us?
- Kampyongo says accusing him of being in quarantine is like alleging that Diggers editor is HIV positive
Subscribe for news email alerts
ArchivesMay0 PostsJun0 PostsJul0 PostsAug0 PostsSep0 PostsOct0 PostsNov0 PostsDec0 Posts
- «April 2020»
- April 2020
- March 2020
- February 2020
- January 2020
- December 2019
- November 2019
- October 2019
- September 2019
- August 2019
- July 2019
- June 2019
- May 2019
- April 2019
- March 2019
- February 2019
- January 2019
- December 2018
- November 2018
- October 2018
- September 2018
- August 2018
- July 2018
- June 2018
- May 2018
- April 2018
- March 2018
- February 2018
- January 2018
- December 2017
- November 2017
- October 2017
- September 2017
- August 2017
- July 2017
- June 2017
- May 2017
- April 2017
- March 2017
- February 2017
- January 2017
- December 2016
- November 2016
- October 2016
[search_popup]Send this to a friend