HONE SIAME, Lusaka
ZAMBIA Air Force (ZAF) commander Eric Chimese has urged military personnel to continue educating citizens on the role of the defence force in attracting meaningful foreign direct investments (FDI) in any country.
Lieutenant-General Chimese said the survey that was carried out by the World Bank revealed that countries with stronger militaries tended to attract more FDIs than those with compromised security.
Lt-Gen Chimese was speaking to Zimbabwe Staff College faculty and students who paid a courtesy call on him as part of the geo-political studies package on Monday.
He told the Zimbabwean delegation that he was delighted to host them considering the historical and cordial bilateral relations that Zambia and Zimbabwe enjoy.
“I was a directing staff at the Zimbabwe staff college until 2010, shortly before I was appointed Zambia Air Force Commander,” Lt-Gen Chimese said.
This is according to a statement issued yesterday by the ZAF public relations unit.
Lt-Gen Chimese disclosed that ZAF is ranked 11th in Africa in terms of aircraft strength by a Global Firepower study, seventh on the continent in training aircraft and 79th on world’s air forces ratings.
He has since invited the delegation to view the L-15 Aircraft Simulator Training Centre to be opened soon, which he described as one of the highly technologically advanced inventions meant to reduce costs and improve flight safety without compromising standards in flying training.
Lt-Gen Chimese was optimistic that Zimbabwe and other Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries would exploit it and the Livingstone training facility by sending some of their pilots for training in Zambia.
He said there is need for defence forces in the region to find a common ground of ensuring that peace and security contributes to the development of the region,
He also informed the delegation about the public private partnership (PPP) initiatives that the Zambian government had allowed ZAF to embark on which will help reduce over-dependency on the government treasury.
And Zimbabwe Staff College commandant Josephat Kudumba, who was head of the delegation, was impressed with the way ZAF has moulded itself to meet its requirements and responsibilities.
He was impressed with the reception accorded to him and his delegation, which is still in the country.