Serenje, Tuesday (February 13, 2024)
Chief Chitambo of the Lala people of Chitambo District, Central Province, says he has never demeaned Government as insinuated by those interested in mining in his Chiefdom.
The Traditional Leader says a group of people applied for Consent to mine in his Chiefdom after approaching him with various documents.
The Lala Chief said he granted Consent to the team after being satisfied with the documents availed at the time.
Chief Chitambo said he, however, learnt that there was an abrogation of the Law by the team, forcing him to withdraw the Consent.
He said the team was aggrieved and started issuing threats that he had demeaned Government.
The Traditional Leader said he simply took action in public interest in line with the law and wondered how he was accused of demeaning Government.
He said this at a Traditional Leaders Caucus organised by Centre for Environment Justice (CEJ) which is implementing a Resilient Initiatives for Sustainable Environment (RISE) project in Serenje and Sinazongwe with support from Bread for the World (BFTW) Germany.
The Traditional Leader paid tribute to CEJ for providing a platform for chiefs to share their challenges, solutions and opportunities, especially in the Extractive Sector.
“They came with all the papers and told me to sign the Consent. I asked for evidence and they produced the papers. I therefore, gave them a Consent. Later on, I was notified that there was a barrier blocking them from proceeding with the exercise. So, I revoked the Consent. Thereafter, I heard stories that I had insulted Government. How? By just revoking Consent? I never insulted Government. My appeal to my fellow chiefs is that let us unite and learn from each other,” he said.