Guy Scott U-turns on firing of party Secretary General Edgar Lungu
Patriotic Front (PF) interim president Guy Scott dismissed Secretary General Edgar Lungu then quickly reversed his decision as protests broke out in various parts of the capital and pressure increased from Cabinet and the PF Central Committee. The PF Central Committee will convene sometime after the burial of late President Michael Sata next week to hash out any positional conflicts.
It’s important to note that these events happened at party level – Edgar Lungu would have continued to hold his positions as Justice Minister and Minister of Defence. Whatever the intention of Scott’s decision was, he showed his hand too early and his timing was poor (national mourning had just started) and it backfired on him. The decision seemed to have galvanized support behind Edgar Lungu who was acting as president while Sata was in London receiving medical care. It is too early to tell who is the PF is likely to field as candidate for the January 2015 election but we will find out for sure later this month. This month will be a big test of the mettle of the current ruling party as there seems to be some division inside it - opposition parties will look to pounce.
Mines Minister set to table new minerals law before parliament
Mines Minister Christopher Yaluma is set to present the revised ‘Mines and Minerals Act’ as by year-end. He pushed back an earlier deadline set for the presentation of the document to accommodate changes to legal jargon recommended by the Ministry of Justice. Parliament will resume sitting sometime after President Sata’s burial takes place will and have to extend its sitting time in order to debate this bill and pass the 2015 national budget.
Nothing has so far leaked out about what will be in the revised Minerals Act but the theme that the Mines Minister has been repeating is “greater involvement for Zambians in the industry”. ‘Act number 7 of 2008’is what was being looked specifically. The act generally covers licensing and regulation of mining activities. It will be interesting to find out what changes are proposed and you can listen in on the debate on parliament radio frequency 92.5fm (Lusaka), 91.3fm (Kapiri Mposhi) and 94.4fm (Kitwe).
German agri-business firm Amatheon set to acquire More Beef Zambia
Berlin-based Amatheon Agri Group is set to acquire Zambian meat processor and butchery operator ‘More Beef Zambia’. The transaction will be executed through their subsidiary ‘The Real Meat Company Ltd’ in which they acquired a controlling stake in September 2014 (pending regulatory approval). More Beef employs over 200 people and has revenues of about $15 million.
More Beef has a partnership with South African supermarket chain Pick N Pay. Amatheon founder and CEO Carl Heinrich Bruhn said that the deal “will create the opportunities for leveraging synergies across their meat processing and farming operations”. Is anyone else thinking about Zambeef after the two preceding sentences? In particular their “farm to fork” model and their partnership with Shoprite, both of which have brought them tremendous success over the years. Pick N Pay is expanding quickly in Zambia and is also set to be anchor tenant in the newly built ‘East Park Mall’ next to the University of Zambia. This is a very interesting development for the sector and one to keep an eye on!
LME Copper 3 month seller price: $6,645 per MT
Trying to decipher this puzzle that is Zambia by using a variety of publicly available data (structured and unstructured) in conjunction with my own skill/experience. * * *