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THE  Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) General Secretary Changala Siame has said the mining sector, has under the watch of Mines and Mineral Development Minister Paul Kabuswe, plunged into the depth of darkness, littered with illegal mining, licensing irregularities, plummeting copper production and never ending environmental degradation.

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Mr Siame said the EFF condemns the mismanagement of the mining sector because it has ushered in a dark era of economic decline, saying the mining sector should be a beacon of prosperity and stability, not a vortex of turmoil that suffocates the hopes and dreams of our people.

He said in an interview in Kitwe yesterday that from the time the UPND took over the government, Copper production has plummeted from 800,000 metric tonnes in 2021 to 700,000 metric tonnes in 2022.

Mr Siame said, apart from the mining sector plunging into the depth of darkness, there was nothing significant which was happening in other sectors which Zambians can point to, other than, the worsening poverty and hunger in communities.

Mr Siame said, the unresolved issues surrounding Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) and Mopani Copper Mines (KCM) have only served to compound the struggles faced by individuals and businesses on the Copperbelt where the two mining  companies have been contributing significantly to the economy of the province

He said the decline in economic activity has torn through crucial aspects of the society, shaking the Chisokone market in Kitwe to its core, saying the absence of a vibrant mining sector has fuelled a cycle of non-payment, escalating levels of poverty, and limited economic opportunities that continue to suffocate the communities

He said it was difficult to believe that Vedanta Resources Plc which almost run down the giant KCM will come and recapitalise the mine and be able to motivate the miners through proper remuneration and better conditions of service.



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