Stories written by Kelvin Kachingwe

ZAMBIA: Debate Over Windfall Tax

The Zambian government has been accused of embracing poverty as the debate over a windfall tax on the mining industry heats up.

Strong GDP growth has not overcome poverty in Zambia, threatening achievement of development goals such as access to clean water. Credit:  Kelvin Kachinwe/IPS

ZAMBIA: Widespread Poverty Threatens to Reverse MDG Gains

Civil society organisations warn that unless Zambia addresses its high poverty levels, the strides the country already made in achieving some of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) may be reversed.

Rights groups fear women will not fully participate in the 2011 electoral process because of current election violence.  Credit: Richard Mulonga/IPS

ZAMBIA: Election Violence Could Mean Fewer Women Participants

There are growing fears that increasing numbers of women candidates and voters may not participate in the 2011 general elections because of an upsurge in election-related violence.

SOUTHERN AFRICA: Youth Vulnerable to Violence

James Banda, 27, is an unemployed youth although he occasionally is hired to act as a bus conductor at Lusaka’s Kulima Tower Bus Station. He may not have a permanent job, but it is easy to find him. Anyone looking for him just has to go to the bus station and ask. Everyone knows who he is. Banda, or ‘ba-Jay’ as people call him, is a young man who commands a lot of respect from his friends – he is a thug for hire.

For a long time, Zambian women's participation in politics has ended at voting. Credit: Richard Mulonga/IPS

ZAMBIA: Calls for Political Parties to Field 50 Percent Female Candidates

With women having achieved little in terms of representation in decision-making positions in Zambia, a national women’s lobby group is hoping to change this in the 2011 general elections.

ZAMBIA: Need to Mainstream Gender Equality into all Policies

Despite the adoption almost a decade ago of a national gender policy that aims to ensure fair participation of men and women in the development process, most of the Zambian government’s policies still remain gender blind, say civil society and women's rights associations.

ZAMBIA: Bringing Phones to the Countryside

Cellular phones have quickly become a popular and effective means of communication in Zambia, but their use has been concentrated in urban areas. Government and NGOs are now trying to extend these services to rural people.

ZAMBIA: Telecommunications Sale ‘Lacks Transparency’

The impending privatisation of the Zambia Telecommunications Company (Zamtel) is being opposed by civil society organisations and opposition political parties, who accuse the government of lacking transparency in selling one of the last remaining state-utility firms.

The Supreme Court building in Lusaka. The objectiveness of the judicary has been called into question by the opposition. Credit: Brian Dell/Wikicommons

ZAMBIA: Chief Justice Accused of Collusion by Opposition

Chief justice Ernest Sakala has been accused of colluding with the president’s administration to protect high-profile people accused of corruption. But the Law Association of Zambia has rejected the charges as unfair.

Chansa Kabwela speaking to the media after her acquittal. Credit: Kelvin Kachingwe/IPS

RIGHTS-ZAMBIA: ‘Justice Prevailed’ – Says News Editor Acquitted of False Charges

Chansa Kabwela faced a five-year jail sentence when she sent photographs of a woman giving birth, without medical assistance while in the country’s largest hospital, to government officials.

ZAMBIA: Electoral Commission Accused of Bias

The Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) is once again under fire from opposition political parties and some civil society organisations, which accuse it of bias in favour of the ruling party during elections.

Lusaka-based journalists march on the Great East Road campaigning for the violence against journalists to stop. Credit: Kelvin Kachingwe/IPS

ZAMBIA: Media Face Beatings and Attacks

When journalists were beaten by political supporters for covering the president’s return trip from abroad, and cabinet ministers and police officers looked on without stopping it, it seemed to be the last straw in the victimisation of the media. But it was not.

ZAMBIA: Give Us Our Constitution

Pressure is mounting for a new constitution that is inclusive of all citizens' views as the ongoing delays by the body granted to draft it still continues.

ZAMBIA: Holding Government Responsible for Spending

The recent change of the budget cycle to allow government to effectively spend money to develop the country is not good enough unless those in charge of the money are made accountable, say civil society.

AFRICA: Government on Collision Course with Civil Society

The acquittal of former President Frederick Chiluba on charges of theft after a seven-year long landmark case, and the refusal by the Zambian government to appeal, has put government and civil society on a collision course.

This borehole in Luapula is one of 205 drilled by U.K. charity WaterAid since 1994: 400,000 people have benefited from the wells. Credit:  Nebert Mulenga/IRIN

SANITATION-ZAMBIA: Back Policy With Funding

Water- and sanitation-related diseases cost communities dearly, particularly in rural Zambia.

ZAMBIA: Malaria Prevention Pays Off

Huge investments in malaria control and prevention have prevented as many as 75,000 child deaths over the past five years.

ZAMBIA: NGO Bill Still Inspires No Confidence

As the Zambian parliament resumes, civil society organisations (CSOs) have come out strongly to oppose the Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) Bill, which seeks to regulate their operations.

Women taking up the slack: Martha Phiri and her mother set up this stall after her father was laid off from the mines. Credit:  Kelvin Kachingwe/IPS

ECONOMY-ZAMBIA: Hard Times on the Copperbelt

Nowhere in Zambia is the impact of the global financial crisis being felt harder than in the copper and cobalt-rich province of the Copperbelt.

The partner of a retrenched Luanshya miner selling bananas to support her family. Credit:  Kelvin Kachingwe/IPS

ZAMBIA: Controversial Chinese Firm Given Another Copper Mine

The desperate need to find an alternative investor for the closed Luanshya Copper Mines (LCM) in Zambia’s Copperbelt has not prevented some Zambians from fiercely opposing the government’s decision to let Chinese-owned Non-Ferrous Metals Mining Company (NFCA) run the mine.

U.N. statistics show just 58 percent of Zambians have access to improved water sources; only 52 percent use improved sanitation facilities. Credit:  Kelvin Kachingwe/IPS

HEALTH-ZAMBIA: Sanitation Backlog To Blame for High Child Mortality

Dehydration caused by severe diarrhoea is a key cause of infant deaths in Zambia, a country with one of the highest child morality rates in the world, according to a new report by Zambia’s health department.

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