Mobilising Christians Against Poverty

Press releases

Government should cut NCC Delegates

On 31st January 2009 Micah Challenge Zambia held a meeting at Savoy on the National Budget entitled A Reflection on the 2009 National Budget which targeted Christian Professionals. The main speaker was Mr Japo Mbetwa (A fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants -ACCA and the Zambia Institute of Certified Accountants. He is also Finance Director and Chief Operational Officer for the Jasembe Enterprises LTD). Rev Derrick Mutungu (Chairperson of the Zambia Christian Chamber of Commerce) was the respondent.

As we called for this meeting it was our observation that Christian professionals are socially, economically and politically alienated from the main stream of national development. The church most often does not have adequate and reliable data to engage with precision and certainty on the nature, extent and magnitude of national problems. We sensed that there is room for the church through its Christian professionals to speak prophetically into gaps that are in the policies and guidelines for government institutions dealing with development, especially in areas of HIV/AIDS, gender, youth, trade and poverty. We identified monitoring of the implementation of our national budget as one way Christian professionals can engage with national developmental issues. Government normally comes up with good budget to address issues facing our nation but the citizen especially the church rarely hold the government accountable in the way it implements the activities.

Resolutions of the Savoy Hotel meeting were shared with the Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia (EFZ). Some of the resolutions were part of EFZ’s presentation to the Parliamentary Expanded Committee on Estimates. See below an article from the Post Newspaper which captured the EFZ presentation on the national budget.

the-post Government should cut NCC Delegates –EFZ 9th February, 2009.

The Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia (EFZ) on Friday submitted to a parliamentary Expanded Committee on Estimates that the government should cut down on the number of National Constitution Conference (NCC) delegates due to the global economic crisis.

The committee, which was chaired by Lukulu East Member of Parliament Batuke Imenda, comprised chairpersons of all parliamentarian select committees.

Making the submission on the 2009 budget estimates, EFZ advocacy programme officer Myiya Mwandawande said the current economic situation could not support such a large number of delegates at the NCC.

“With the current economic meltdown, we ask government to scale down the number of membership in the NCC in order to free up some resources for economic development. We are aware that there are people participating in the NCC in the name of the church. But I would like to state that these are some of the people government can remove because EFZ is not participating in the NCC. So these people are either representing themselves or their individual churches, not the EFZ,” he said.

Mwandawande further submitted that the government should reduce on the number of ministries and channel more funds into job creation.

“We recommend that the government reduce the number of ministries in order to have a lean government which will exhibit government’s commitment to save money. These funds will in turn be redirected to the social sector such as education and health. We further recommend that the government should avail more funds towards the preservation of jobs and creating new ones and ultimately protecting those in the mines,” he submitted.

Mwandawande also said the government should cut down expenditure on VIPs.

Government should cut down expenditure on VIPs through Ministry of Works and Supply. We therefore ask government to rationalize expenditure toward actual poverty reduction programmes aimed at empowering communities through social and economic sectors’ increased funding. We ask the government to uphold to windfall taxes in the mining sector. Funds raised from same should be directed to the social sector,” he said.

On agriculture, Mwandawande submitted that members of parliament and the government review the use of funds channeled to the agriculture sector.

“The government together with all the stakeholders should develop an accountability and transparency programme to deal the agricultural sector. Members of parliament and government to review the actual expenditure for funds availed to small scale farmers and the improvement of food security. We recommend the review of staff and ministerial heads who mismanaged the resources in the previous financial year. It would be outrageous to give them custody of extra funds,” submitted Mwandawande.

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Press Statement On the 2009 National Budget

Press Statement

On the 2009 National Budget

By Micah Challenge Zambia in conjunction with  the Ndola Pastors Fellowship

February 11, 2009

As pastors in Ndola we are very conscious of the environment in which God has placed us in. As we release our statement on the National Budget which was presented to Parliament on 30th January 2009 by the Hon. Minister of Finance and National Planning, Dr. Situmbeko Musokotwane for the year 1 January 2009 to 31 December 2009. The Theme of the budget was “Enhancing growth through competitiveness and diversification.”

This budget was presented on the backdrop of the Global economic and financial crisis and which significantly affected performance of the economy in 2008 and will pose challenges in the quest to reduce poverty levels as desired under the FNDP and Zambia Vision 2030. As we look around on the Copperbelt we are already seeing the effect of the global economic melt down.

Positive Steps

We would like to start by commending the government for the positive indicators that the Zambia economy had registered in 2008. However, the good fortunes where turned round in the fourth quarter as Zambia started to feel the effect of global economic recession. We would like also to commend the government for some positive outlooks contained in the 2009 National Budget. Some of these are:

  1. The proposed 37 percent increase in the allocation to the Agriculture Sector this year.
  2. The Government’s commitment to extending the benefits of growth and development across the whole nation through the devolution of appropriate service deliveries to local authorities.
  3. The Government intends to address the question of competitiveness by dealing with the high cost of doing business.
  4. The Government has a commitment to the development of the agricultural sector as a key to the poverty reduction program.
  5. The Government has set up three initial Multi Facility Economic Zones in Lusaka and the Copperbelt
  6. The Government has outlined efforts to improve the performance of the tourism sector.
  7. The government has allocated 12.9 percent of the budget to the health sector.

Major Concerns

1. Poverty Reduction

The budget speech does not march the deeds in the yellow book. Under poverty reduction programs (PRP), there is money allocated for workshops, conferences, audits, management of petroleum, paying outstanding utility bills, drafting legislation, construction of offices, travel and production of documents, honestly how low can you refer these aspects to (PRP) when you want to achieve growth by 5%. There is a lot of wasteful expenditure.

We would therefore ask our Members of Parliament to help the nation understand that the budget speech does not meet with the reflections in the yellow budget. We would like to see a more pro-poor budget that meets the aspirations of the majority of the poor and helps us to attain the Millennium Development Goals.

Surely, in a year of financial crisis, falling commodity prices and less revenue, the Ministry of Works and Supply used K9.537 billion in 2008 for very important people (VIP) residential furniture, curtains, carpets, linen and banqueting suite. This year another K3.286 billion has been allocated for maintenance of VIP houses and other leaders’ houses, translate all these amounts into education and health services. Genuinely, would you say these expenditures carry on appreciable social and economic return?

We therefore asks our government to rationalize expenditure towards actual poverty reduction programs aimed at empowering communities through social and economic sector increased funding.

2. Auditor General Report

It is saddening to know that huge sums of money as much over K700 billion are being plundered at the expense of National Development. We ask our honourable members of parliament to come together and formulate a plan together with civil society and the church on how we can recover that money because the government has proved to have failed to bring the culprits to book.

Our concern is that the same staff who mismanaged the resources in the previous financial year are yet to be in custody of even extra 2 trillion. We also call on Members of Parliament to strengthen various investigative wings of the government such as ACC, DEC and the Police in order to intensify the fight against corruption.

3. Mining

This year’s budget indicates that the mining sector recorded positive growth of 4.9 percent in 2008, comparing favourably with growth of 3.6 percent in 2007. Our concern in this sector is dropping windfall and reduction of mineral taxes. The mining companies have been complaining about costs of inputs in production. However, the recent development shows that ordinary oil has come down by US$ 100 per barrel which is about 60 to 70percent down. How has that affected the profitability of the mines? “How come they are closing?”

We are therefore asking government to re-direct that money for the windfall to the social sectors or rather than hike the P.A.Y.E for the worker. It is our sincere hope that our members of parliament will help us in the deliberations to ensure government changes this decision regarding the windfall and reduction of mineral taxes, Zambian also need to benefit from copper resources.

4. Agriculture and Food Security

We ask government to channel more resources to agriculture and other tangible agro programs that will benefit small scale farmers at household level. It is our conviction that our members of parliament will help during the subsequent deliberations on the budget to ensure the monies are utilized for the purposes that will serve communities at household level as compared to workshop, fuel and travel allowances for government workers. The K35 billion for small-scale farmers meant for ensuring national food security is welcome. However, as we ask our members of parliament to ask government to review the actual indicated expenditure of these allocations, with a focus to improve food security at household level.

5. Social Sectors

We welcome the increase to the allocation in the health sector by 12.9 percent. However, our concern is raised on why the Zambian Government has failed to adhere to their commitment to increase the health budget in line with Abuja declaration 2001 of 51 heads of state Zambia inclusive of 15% commitment towards budgeting to the heath sector. Zambia’s health sector requires urgent redress to end premature death resulting from deficiency in health service delivery. Our appeal to the government and our members of parliament is that for us to achieve all the MDGs related to health we need to ensure that all resources allocated to the health sector are prudently managed and ring fenced towards actual households and individual health priorities.

Final remarks

  1. The economy is too dependent on mining though pronouncements have bee made to diversify the economy though not much has been done. We call on the government to learn from the current fall of copper prices and other commodity prices to institute measures to diversify the economy by seriously promoting agriculture, tourism and manufacturing.
  2. The budget does not seem to address specific interventions which can lead to economic recovery. At the same time the budget is not realistic because the government is thinking in terms of raising more money without telling us how they are going to cut down on the costs. We recommend that the government reduces the number of government ministries in order to have a lean government which will exhibit government’s commitment to save money in order to redirect more resources to social sectors such as education and health.
  3. We call on government to enact a specific bill which will lay out its plans and commitments to infrastructure development.
  4. We observed that Decentralization is a good strategy. However, this can not be fully implemented due to lack of capacity in the local authorities and if not checked this can lead to gross mismanagement of the resources
  5. We call on the government to release monthly reports to show how the budget is fairing. This information can be made available in the Parliamentary Constituency Offices. We believe that making this information readily available will increase accountability.
  6. The government is called upon to devise an industrial revolution plan which will see us add value to raw materials such as copper, uranium, and cobalt in stead of the present trend of exporting raw materials.
  7. Economic development zones: is this the most strategic way to develop our economy. Why only relocate economic Zones on the Copperbelt and Lusaka. We need economic Zones to set up in rural areas as a well of stimulating rural development. Furthermore industries should be taken to places where raw materials are found. It was also noted that the present design of the economic zones favour more foreigners than indigenous entrepreneurs. The government is also called upon to consider setting up an economic zone in Ndola’ as Industrial area which seems to be going to waste due to lack of economic activity in the area. As a way of expanding the manufacturing base we would like to call on the government to locate Multi Facility Economic Zones in places where there are raw materials instead of localising these facilities in Lusaka and the Copperbelt only.
  8. We also call on the Government to quickly conclude business in the NCC in order to free up some resources for economic development.
  9. We call on the government to reduce interest rates in order to stimulate economic activity by reducing the cost of doing business.
  10. We call on the government to deal with the budget cycle in order follow through and implement the budget. We propose that the government considers presenting the budget to Parliament by October rather the preset trend of presenting the budget in January or February.
  11. We call on the government recapitalize NCZ in order to show its commitment to the agriculture sector. It does not make sense to import fertilizer at a high cost when the same can be sourced locally and save the nation missions of forex. If the government does not have a capacity it should invite a reputable foreign investor to partner with in order to revamp NCZ. This we believe will help build the capacity of the fertilizer support program
  12. We do not agree with government intentions to run the mines. Instead this can be done in partnership with companies local or foreign and shares floated on LUSE in order for citizens to participate in financing these institutions.
  13. It is our sincere hope that our members of parliament will help us in the deliberations to ensure government changes this decision regarding the windfall and reduction of mineral taxes, Zambian also need to benefit from copper resources.
  14. The K100, 000 increase on the threshold PAYE (K600, 000 to K700, 000) does not realistically represent majority of those in employment. We would like to ask government to increase the PAYE to the minimum amount of K1, 800,000 to meet the ordinary Zambian household needs according to the food basket.
  15. We also call on the members of Parliament to prioritise the empowerment of the youth and scale up HIV interventions among the youth.

Micah Challenge Zambia Press Statement

Micah Challenge Zambia Press Statement

On The Millennium Development High-Level Meeting in New York

The gathering in New York for the High-Level meeting on 25th September for the Heads of States to discuss the Millennium Development Goals will mark the eighth year since the 189 Heads of State signed the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) Declaration. At the first MDG summit in 2000 the Heads of States from the Global South and Global North promised to “free men, women and children from dehumanizing conditions of extreme poverty.” Micah Challenge Zambia is calling the 800 church coalition members in Zambia to intercede for the Heads of States that they come up with resolutions that will transform Africa and uplift its people out of extreme poverty by providing them with the basic things they need to live a decent life: nutritious food, clothes, clean water, a home and health care. Pastor Lawrence Temfwe the national facilitator of Micah Challenge Zambia announced that, “Churches serving in communities where people live on less than $1 per day from Kawambwa to Mufumbwe want their voices to be heard on matters that affect them especially on the following”:

Democracy and Free Market

We are cautiously encouraged by the progress being made in meeting the MDGs. We support the core principles of development policy that the government laid out in the Fifth National Development Plan, which is the vehicle Zambia is using to progress towards the MDGs. We are delighted to note that Zambia is showing strong commitment to promoting good governance that is allowing participatory approach for all key players and stakeholders based on transparency and rule of law, and broad based private sector-led growth. However, we are concerned that the free market we have embraced has largely created severely lopsided wealth in the hands of foreign minority. At this High-Level Meeting we call on the government to express its dissatisfaction at this imposed free market democracy that does not spread its benefits to the impoverished Zambian majority. We call on the government to confront the leaders from the developed nations that the political and economic models they are promoting don’t guarantee political stability or economic prosperity for Africans living in poverty.

Water and Sanitation

We call on leaders at High-Level meeting to accelerate the achievement of internationally agreed goals on water and sanitation especially that this is the year of the International Year of Sanitation. We call on Heads of States from the developing nations to urge the G8 leaders to fulfill their pledge to revive their efforts to implement the Evian Water Plan (agreed at the G8 Summit in 2003). Given the lack of access to safe sanitation services and to clean water we insist that water and sanitation be a major focus at this High-Level meeting

HIV/AIDS

We appeal that the High-Level meeting effectively address the issue of children affected by HIV. There is need for meaningful financial commitment on maternal and child health, including the prevention of mother-to-child transmission. We are concerned that the current projected $60 billion funding by the G8 for health over the next 5 years falls short of what is required to achieve the health related MDGs and Universal Access by 2010. Based on the current UNAIDS’ resources estimated, the G8 share of resources for HIV alone is $65 billion for the next three years.

Food and Security

The High-Level meeting must ensure that the food crises doesn’t slip off the political agenda especially considering that 850m people in the world were chronically food insecure before the food prices rose globally. It is also vital that the High-Level meeting address the root causes of the food crisis, and make it a priority to invest more mitigation, preparedness and adaptation so that poor communities are more resilient and they are not pushed over the edge when prices rise.

Presidential Elections 30th October.

We urge all presidential candidates to make a commitment to achieving the MDGs. There is need for Zambian voters to listen carefully to what each candidate is promising to do in uplifting the lives of Zambians out of extreme poverty. We call on all Zambians not to vote tribe, chibuku, party or age but character, vision and strategy on how we will attain the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals. We call on Christians to vote Bible. Christians can form the largest voting block in this nation. We call on Christians to vote for a person who will promote righteousness, integrity, hard-work, compassion and justice.

For More Information contact:

Pastor Lawrence Temfwe Tel +260-212-681172

Micah Challenge Zambia National Facilitator

Or

Pastor Martin Kapenda

Micah Challenge Zambia Campaign Coordinator

Cell. +260 977-788-487


Praying for President Mwanawasa

Praying for President Mwanawasa

A new chapter is being written in the history of Zambia. Zambians are experiencing a strong sense of unity and purpose. The grave situation of President Mwanawasa’s health is the reason. Thousands, if not million of people, including children, are united through the practice of daily prayer for the President’s healing. Micah Challenge Zambia commends the Church for making this commitment and nonpolitical effort to pray for the President.

Micah Challenge Zambia knows the strength and courage that comes from a nation that prays. No Christian can estimate the influence prayer has had on our President’s decisions as he has led this beautiful and peaceful nation. The mobilization of Zambians to pray for the President and the dedication demonstrated to act is a testimony to the faith and character of the Zambian people.

While we are in this spirit of humility and brokenness, Micah Challenge Zambia calls on the Church to continue to pray for the cabinet, political leaders and everyone charged with public affairs, that they would receive wisdom and guidance from God as they confront this challenge our founding fathers never imagined. Micah Challenge Zambia calls on every politician to lay aside partisan human wisdom as they address this issue. Micah Challenge Zambia calls for a truly patriotic approach to this burden we face, a burden that no one political party or individual can carry.

As we pray for the President let us also be mindful of his bold, selfless and sacrificial fight against corruption, his commitment that Zambia achieves the Millennium Development Goals, and his concerns as SADC chairman that there be a government in Zimbabwe that reflects the will of the people.

“One way we can demonstrate our prayers for our President is by living up to his commitment to do work that leads to political and economic prosperity,” said Pastor Lawrence Temfwe, the National Facilitator of Micah Challenge. “Commitment to Christ, Biblical Christianity and morality are indispensable supports. That is why President Mwanawasa gave his life to Christ. He knows that national morality cannot prevail if Biblical foundations are excluded.”

So let us continue to pray for President Mwanawasa’s timely recovery and to do the work that our president has committed to. We must remain steadfast in facing this challenge as a unified nation. It is only in Christian unity that we can overcome this obstacle and continue down the road toward national development.


AFRICAN FREEDOM DAY

PRESS STATEMENT

As Africa joins together in the celebration of African Freedom day, we must ask ourselves if we have captured the vision for freedom, peace, equality, justice and unity as set forth at the formation of the Organization of African Unity, OAU, said Pastor Lawrence Temfwe, the National Coordinator of Micah Challenge Zambia. African Freedom Day provides an opportunity for African Heads of state to address the citizens of their nation with specific achievements on poverty reduction, better education, water, and health and sanitation services. Micah Challenge Zambia, therefore urges African Heads of state of the nations that made commitment to the vision to half poverty by 2015 at the UN summit in 2000 to accelerate activities that reduce poverty.

Today we celebrate our heroes and the independence and freedom from the oppression of colonialism, imperialism, injustice, and death that has plagued our continent most of our poor communities have no reason to celebrate. Pastor Temfwe said that “We must honour the achievements of the Head of State who have come together to form a new African Union, which exemplifies the ideals of those first Heads of State who envisioned a free and prosperous Africa.” However as we honour how far we have come together, we cannot help but look at the bitter reality of what we have not yet achieved-malaria, HIV/AIDS and conflicts.

The sweet truth of freedom is made bitter by continued violence and injustice that rages across our continent. In Sudan, we see the harsh truth of murder, rape, and injustice perpetrated just across the border from the meeting site of the First Conference of Independent African States that proclaimed our freedom as Africans. To date, the World Health Organisation estimates that around 200, 000 people have died and more than 2.5 million people have been displaced due to the conflict. The actions of the AU in forming a force to establish peace in Sudan are but a stepping stone towards the actualization of our commitment to freedom for ALL of Africa. Envisioning Africa freedom cannot stop at word and celebration, but must be realized in the actions of these African nations in forming peace.

Zimbabwe too represents the unfulfilled commitment towards justice, peace and democracy in all of Africa. Mugabe’s denial of free and open elections represents a suppression of the voice of the Zimbabwean people. The failure of true democracy is manifest in Magabe’s expulsion and outright murder of the Opposition Party. This flies in the face of the goals of the OAU which we celebrate today. If the voice Africa must be heard, the voices of Zimbabwe cannot continue to be denied by their government. On this day of celebration, we call upon the leaders of Africa, especially the Southern African Development Community, to speak out against this oppression and put voice and action to the values which we so easily proclaim today.

In the proclamation of African Freedom Day, we can honour what has passed. In the 1980s and 90s the values of African Freedom Day led the people of South Africa out of imperialism and apartheid into a freer and more just society that represented to all of Africa the realization of the goals of the OAU and the First Conference of Independent African States. How then can a nation which once embodied the values of this day, allow new waves of violence against immigrants living and working in South Africa? So far, 22 immigrants have been murdered, with up to 15, 000 seeking safety in police stations, churches, and community centres. Are we not a continent desiring for peace, justice, freedom, and democracy? As one African nation to our neighbours, we call upon all of Africa to honour the distance we have come, and to recognize the race not yet finished.

 

Lawrence Temfwe

National Coordinator

Micah Challenge Zambia


PRESS RELEASE

PRESS RELEASE

On food price surge

The current food price surge is of great concern and if measures are not taken to mitigate the situation, Zambia is not going to meet the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) to halve poverty by the year 2015 says Micah Challenge. As it has been observed by The Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection (JCTR) in their Basic Needs Basket assessment for April, the challenge of provision of sustained affordable cost of living is becoming even more formidable than before in light of current increases in global and national fuel and food prices. Micah Challenge is therefore, deeply grieved by comments attributed to Hon. Ng’andu Magande, the Minister of Finance where he was quoted as stating that Zambia will be immune to the impact of global food shortage (Post Newspaper April 26, 2008). “How can Zambians of who the majority are living in poverty and are unable to meet the cost of their basic food items be exempted from global food shortage?” asks Pastor  Martin Kapenda the Campaign Coordinator

Micah Challenge says that the impact of price increases in basic food needs such mealie meal and cooking oil is felt intensely by poor families who have children attending Grade 8 to 12. Several families in the low-income communities are having their children drop out from school as they cannot afford the PTA + User fees which are pegged from K252, 000 to K600, 000. Micah Challenge calls on the Education Minister to direct all schools not expel any child on the account of failure to pay such school fees at one time. Micah Challenge appeals to the Minister to instruct schools to receive fees each term in order to assist those who cannot pay the lump sum at one time.

Micah Challenge is aware that this year’s harvest for most rural households will be significantly reduced due to excessive floods during the last year farming season. Micah Challenge is equally worried that the increase in food prices will not benefit rural farmers as they will have very little excess to sell to the urban market. Micah Challenge calls on the government to take practical steps to ensure that the rural population receives the necessary food supplements during this time of need. In addition Micah Challenge calls on the government to provide the country’s struggling farmers with subsidised fertilizers. Micah Challenge commends the government for resisting the donor conditionalities that resulted in Zambia changing from food aid importer to an exporter a few years ago. Therefore, we hail the Zambia’s subsidies program and call on the government to come with a strategy that will eventually end subsidies but at the same time ensure food security.

As a nation God has endowed this country with fertile land, minerals, water and visionary and compassionate leadership from the village chief to the community leader and from the church leader to the business leader and from government leader to artists and sports people. It will therefore be a treasonable case if we do not reduce the proportion of people living on less than one dollar from 58% to 29% by the year 2015. “We owe it to God who has entrusted us with so much and to ourselves, our children and our children’s children to fight poverty with all that we are and with all that we have,” said Pastor Lawrence Temfwe the National Coordinator of Micah Challenge Zambia


Press Statement on the ZESCO Power cuts.

Micah Challenge Zambia is concerned with the pressure we seem to be exerting on the environment due to the power crisis that our nation has been going through for last several months and recently made worse by the extended power cuts. The extended power cuts are reversing the gains we have been making in the fight against poverty.

Our nation is endowed with a wealth of natural resources within 16 ecosystems with landscapes that range from extensive forests to wetlands. This rich natural resource is under threat if we cannot control the wanton destruction of forests due to charcoal burning. Sadly, Zambia faces daunting challenges of de-forestation at the rate of 250-300 thousand ha per year. The destruction of our forests will lead to reduced biodiversity.

Due to the current power blackouts being experienced in our nation, the search for alternative sources of fuel will lead to unsustainable charcoal production and increased demand for fuel-wood. As more households demand for charcoal as an alternative source of energy our forests will be face further destructions. This will make it difficult for Zambia to attain Millennium Development Goal number 7, where we have committed ourselves to ensure environmental sustainability. . In the year 2000, the government of Zambia and 188 other nations made a promise to halve poverty by 2015 through the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Many of the goals are in danger of not being met in Zambia. As a coalition of Christians committed to standing up for justice, we remind the Zambian government to keep the promises they made. Conserving natural resources will certainly contribute to the reduction of poverty in our country.

Unsustainable destruction of our forests will certainly contribute to climate change. This climate change which is human induced impacts negatively mostly on ecosystems. As a nation as we operate within the United Nations Framework on Climate Change and its Kyoto Protocol we need to curb practices which will ultimately accelerate the process of climate change. Failure to control change factors that accelerate climate change will lead to widespread loss of productivity, erosion, reduction in stream flow and other negative impacts. Today we are threatened by destructive floods due to climate change.

Micah Challenge Zambia calls on the Zambian Government to quickly resolve the problem being faced by ZESCO to meet the ever rising electricity demand. Micah Challenge Zambia urges government leaders to re-focus their efforts, especially to ensure the following goals are met: With the extensive power cuts or load shedding in place most households regardless of their economic status are depending on charcoal. The rising demand for charcoal is not good for this nation as it has negative effect on environmental sustainability.

Notes for the Editor:

Micah Challenge in Zambia is a coalition of member organizations, churches, denominations, institutions and individuals who are committed to engaging in poverty reduction and responding to the biblical call to ‘do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God’ (Micah 6:8).

Micah Challenge Zambia is co-ordinated by Jubilee Centre under the auspices of the Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia, and is part of the global Micah Challenge campaign founded by the World Evangelical Alliance (which represents more 420 million Christians) and the Micah Network (which brings together more than three 300 Christian organizations that provide relief, development and justice activities throughout the world) to help mobilize Christians against poverty.

Contact Person: Pastor Lawrence Temfwe. Micah Challenge National Facilitator

Telephone: 212-680010 or 0966-909286