Konkola Copper Mines has delayed August salaries for managers so that it can raise enough resources to pay a substantial amount towards clearing its debt with Copperbelt Energy Corporation.

In a memo dated September 4, KCM Vice President-Human Capital Management Beatrice Mutambo informed managers that August salaries had been delayed due to pressure to pay for power supply.

We wish to advise that management salaries for the month of August 2018 will be paid in the second week of September 2018. This delay is due to pressure to fulfill the payment commitments with the power supply. We regret the inconvenience this may cause,” wrote Mutambo.

And in a press release yesterday, KCM public relations and communications manager Shapi Shachinda announced that CEC lifted the power restriction on September 3 after holding fruitful discussions.

“Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) informs stakeholders that it has held fruitful discussions with the Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC), which have culminated in the lifting of the power restriction imposed on Thursday, 30th August, 2018 over payments. Power was restored to the affected units, the Nchanga smelter and concentrators, on Monday night, which are now returning to normal operations and ramping up production. The company is fully focusing on achieving its production target of 400+ tonnes per day in a safe manner in spite of the setbacks experienced in the past few days. Measures have been put in place to ensure the operations teams catch up with lost production,” stated Shachinda.

Meanwhile, affected employees lamented that there was no guarantee they would be paid next week.

“Most of us are very worried now because what’s the guarantee that we will be paid next week? There are just too many financial challenges and now we all have to suffer so that they pay a small amount to CEC. Maybe it would make sense to stop working till we are paid because how are we going to survive?” lamented the employees.