FOCUS ON MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT with MWILA NTAMBI, Kitwe
AS the voters of Kamfinsa trekked to various polling stations to cast their votes in the August, 2016 general elections, they knew they needed to elect a lawmaker who could represent them well in parliament and address their pressing needs.
The residents of Kamfinsa had to endure the scotching heat, the rough terrain and the long queues just to cast their vote for their preferred candidate.
Kamfinsa is one of the five constituencies in Kitwe with a population of about 86, 834 people, and majority of them living in the peri-urban areas.
Farming is the main economic activity in Kamfinsa and the army worms attacks, which had ravaged most maize fields countrywide did not spare the crop in the area.
Kamfinsa has its own share of problems, which the people in the area feel should be addressed to improve their well-being.
The challenges in Kamfinsa include lack of piped water in some areas, poor road network, which are usually impassable during the rainy season and lack of proper bridges on some crossing point.
The supply of clean water to some residential areas in Kamfinsa is also erratic while the rationing of water to some townships is a common feature.
Most of the areas in Kamfisa are usually cut off from the rest of the district during the rainy season due to lack of proper crossing points.
Kamfinsa also has unplanned settlements and one of them is Mulenga township, which has no roads, piped water and other amenities.
Kamfinsa also has a few secondary schools, forcing children to travel long distances to seek higher education in the neighboring constituencies.
However, newly-elected Patriotic Front (PF) Kamfinsa member of Parliament Elario Musonda has hit the ground running and is determined to address most of the challenges the people of Kamfinsa are facing.
Mr Musonda scooped the Kamfinsa parliamentary seat with a landslide victory, which saw him amassing 12, 882 votes, to beat his closest rival, Stanley Mulenga of the United Party for National Development (UPND), who got 5,767 votes.
Mr Musonda, who got the nod to stand on the highly-sought ruling party’s ticket ahead of incumbent Moses Chishimba, believes people in communities have the potential to identify their own problems and to champion their own development.
His vision is to develop Kamfinsa constituency with the full participation of the people in the community and has made a commitment to work closely with constituents to achieve his development agenda.
“Leadership is not a project, without people, you cannot be a leader. In leadership, there is no ‘I’ but ‘we’. People need to participate in their own development,” he said.
The Kamfinsa lawmaker, who is also a successful businessman is determined to apply his business principles to foster development in Kamfinsa.
Mr Musonda says his philosophy is to promote the spirit of unity and togetherness in fostering development in Kamfinsa.
He said his first task will be to have Mulenga township gazetted into a planned settlement.
Mr Musonda said Mulenga township has poor drainages, no piped water and sewer lines because it is not gazetted as a planned settlement.
He also wants to ensure more secondary schools and clinics are built in Kamfinsa constituency for the benefit of the local people.
Mr Musonda is also working on building bridges on crossing points, especially in the peri-urban areas of Kamfinsa for farmers to easily transport their merchandise to the market.
“We only have two secondary schools here in Kamfinsa. The clinics that are there cannot also carter for the increasing population in the area,” he said.
Mr Musonda said he will also ensure that the works on the Ndeke Mini-Hospital, which is under construction, are completed on time for people in the area to access to good quality health services.
Mr Musonda’s political career started in 1979 when he joined the United National Independent Party (UNIP) youth league, where he undertook a number of activities before taking a break from politics to pursue other interests.
He bounced back into politics in 1998 when he stood as councilor for Bupe ward in Kamfinsa constituency on the UPND ticket but lost to an MMD candidate.
His never-say-die spirit saw him making another return to the political arena in 2011 after the PF under the leadership of late republican President Michael Sata halted the 20-year reign of the Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD).
Mr Musonda is also an active sportsman and he is currently Zambia Golf Union (ZGU) vice-president (north), a position he has held since November last year.
He was also elected Nkana Golf Club captain in 2008, before joining the ZGU as an executive member for northern region.
During his tenure of office as captain at Nkana Golf Club, he was instrumental to the back-to-back successful hosting of the Zambia Open Golf Championship in 2014 and 2015.
The lawmaker was quick to mention that he also had keen interest in football during his school days in Chililabombwe in the 1970s and was goalkeeper for Konkola Blades.
The Kamfinsa lawmaker was born to Mr Greenwell Daudi Mwanashimba and the late Mrs Miniver Chawe Mwanakatwe on September, 13, 1961 in Chililabombwe on the Copperbelt.
He started his primary school at Mitondo Primary School in Chililabombwe before proceeding to Chililabombwe Secondary School in 1977, where he completed his secondary school education.
Mr Musonda pursued his higher education at the Zambia Institute of Technology (ZIT), where he studied Metallurgy and graduated in 1984 before joining the Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines (ZCCM) Nkana division.
He is married to Veronica and together they have five children, Kampembwa, Jane, Kabwe, Elario and Chanda with one grandchild Tambirai Zulu.
He also looks after orphaned children and dependents.