Sat, 24 Feb 2018 09:00:43 +0000
By BENNIE MUNADNDO
LUSAKA City Council shenanigans have once again being exposed by Kalundu residents who have unearthed the local authority’s fast-tracking of another Chinese owned firm’s three-storey building.
And embarrassed about the expose of fast-tracking the erection of a three-storey building in the area by a Chinese firm, Zheng Yi, by reducing the time frame for the public to make submissions, the Lusaka City Council (LCC) has issued another notice which will end on March 6, 2018.
In their letter of objection to the initial notice dated February12, 2018 the residents, among many things, contended that the development could not go ahead since LCC had contravened the processes and procedures in accordance with the Urban and Regional Planning Act No. 3 of 2015 section 53 (2) which states that a planning authority shall not consider an application for the grant of a development permit for a major development unless the applicant has given at least 14 days’ notice of the applicant’s intention.
Neighbourhood chairperson Sonny Mulenga said it was unfortunate that the council was not acting in the best interest of the residents and in line with the law.
“We have no problem with Chinese investments. As a matter of fact, Zambia and China have enjoyed a cordial relationship which stems from the colonial days where that country helped build the railway line for us but what we are against is illegality.
“Things must be done according to the law whether the investor involved is Chinese or not.
“Despite the council initially giving us just eight days to make our submissions, we responded to them promptly and explained why that development must not be allowed but they have now changed and have put up another notice. Must we be taking each other to court even over issues which we can amicably resolve by sitting down and talk?” Dr. Mulenga asked.
And when contacted for a comment, Town Clerk Alex Mwansa said putting up a notice for any developmental intention was a legal requirement but said he will have to find out why an extension to the initial notice had been made.
Meanwhile, some sources within LCC said the best that the council could do was not to give a go ahead to the developer.