CAROLINE KALOMBE, Kasama
GOVERNMENT has signed a US$53.2 million lending agreement with Chambeshi Water and Sewerage Company for improving water and sanitation
services in Northern Province.
Speaking during the signing ceremony witnessed by President Lungu here yesterday, Minister of Finance Felix Mutati said the financing agreement will involve construction of additional water reticulation infrastructure in the province.
Mr Mutati said the funds under the agreement will also be used to rehabilitate sanitation infrastructure in Kasama and Mbala districts.
And Chambeshi Water and Sewerage Company managing director Willard Mutoka said Northern Province has had poor water and sanitation infrastructure for a long time.
Mr Mutoka said the US$53.2 million financing will assist in building modern infrastructure because the current one is old and was meant to cater for a small population.
“As you are aware, the population in this region has increased and the infrastructure is very old and Chambeshi Water and Sewerage Company cannot provide adequate water and proper sanitation services. This financing will allow us to improve water provision and sanitation services,” he said.
And Mr Mutati said the treasury has approved the construction of an additional 15kms of township roads in Kasama and 10kms in Kaputa.
He also said Government has authorised the construction of the Mbala-Kasaba Bay road aimed at boosting tourism in the area.
“The contract will also include construction of Lufubu bridge across Lufubu river,” he said.
Mr Mutati said the Chitoshi-Zachariah Chanda road will be upgraded to increase agricultural production and that money for the project has been allocated.
The minister also said a coffee-processing plant will be built in Northern Province to boost production of the crop in a bid to make the region a coffee hub in Africa.
And Mr Mutati said Government has committed funds to support the irrigation system at Northern Coffee to ensure that the out-grower scheme becomes operational.