By Chileshe Mwango
Green Party Leader Peter Sinkamba has applauded government for considering dialogue with Vedanta Resources over the liquidation of Konkola Copper Mines-KCM-.
Reacting to Mines Minister Paul Kabuswe’s directive to the Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines Investment Holdings -ZCCM-IH- to commence dialogue with Vedanta Resources in an effort to find an out-of-court resolution to their long-running dispute over KCM, Mr. Sinkamba says the country has wasted a lot of time on the matter to an extent that it has missed on making money during the time copper prices fetched as high as $10,000 per ton.
He explains that it is good that government has realized that there is no need to waste more time on the KCM liquidation matter reiterating that waiting for the outcome of the arbitration process would see the country paying Vedanta
Mr. Sinkamba also notes that it is good that Vedanta is offering a $1.5 billion capital injection into the mine which he says is very much needed to boost production that has slumped from 180,000 metric tons to the current 10,000 metric tons.
Meanwhile a group advocating for the return of Vedanta Resources at KCM has also welcomed government’s move to choose dialogue with Vedanta over operations of the mining company.
Vedanta Must Return Community Campaign Coordinator Chishala Mubanga has described the development as a major step in the right direction and a sign of a listening government which has given hope to the communities in Chililabombwe and Chingola who are looking forward to a KCM that is fully functional and actively contributing to the local economy.