Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Garry Nkombo says the Mobile money booths have been relocated by the City Council to a more designated trading place which will create less challenges in terms of cleanliness and order in the Central Business District (CBD).
Speaking during the HOT FM Hot Seat Programme, Mr Nkombo highlighted that Mobile Network providers such as Airtel, MTN, Zamtel, ZANACO and all those that have booths have been engaged to discuss with them how they must not only look at the Bank balance at the end of the month, but they must help and assist in the process of ensuring sanity in their industry is attained.
Mr Nkombo clarified that the relocation of mobile money booths from places such as Cairo Road, Chachacha Road, Freedomway and other places around Lusaka is not because of the African Union Summit but the exercise was conducted to keep the city clean and maintain sanity.
He said that Lusaka is a pioneer for this exercise as the relocation of mobile money booths will be conducted country wide to bring back sanity and order and a signal has already been sent to the Councils.
Mr Nkombo noted that having an opportunity to take part in the cleaning exercise after the removal of booths, his experience was extremely reviewing and sadly so the revelation was that faecal matter was found in Nairobi place an area between Wood Gate House and Kafue House in Cairo Road as the entire place was smelling of urine.
“I am not accusing the mobile money operators to be the ones who were leaving the faecal matter,” he said
He added that the Central Business District is stressed in terms of sanitary facilities and part of what we are doing is to shift all the booths that were around the CBD to the land that interfaces between the CBD and the Zambia Railway land from the Main Post Office all the way to Findeco House and in the process of that the Council should create an ablution block for ladies, gents and the disabled.
“Where do you draw the pride from because it is always said that cleanliness is next to Godliness and charity begins at home,” he said
Mr Nkombo explained the need to usher back the power that confers the authority to the Local Authorities to be the ones managing these booths as against political party carders doing that.
“The Council have been collecting Five Kwacha from all the booths thereby appearing to be giving them legitimacy of existence,” he said
He said that at the time of the transfer of power, some of the carders within the political party where he belongs decided to jump onto the bandwagon to partner with those who were doing wrong and this issue should not be viewed as a matter of dealing with the Patriotic Front (PF) but to deal with carderism altogether.
He added that when President Hakkainde Hichilema took office, one of the pledges that he made to the Zambian people was that the authority should go back to what the Constitution permits, and there will be no carderism in the markets and bus stations.
Furthermore, schemes of this nature are still happening and the Local Authority is trying its best to ensure that regardless of which political party one belongs to, the issue of carderism is something that must be stopped as quickly as possible.