By KASONDE KASONDE –
THE Ministry of Finance has so far released K20 million for the rehabilitation of the Lusaka City Market that was gutted in an inferno early this year.
Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) national coordinator Yande Mwape said through various fundraising ventures, more money had been realised which was yet to be reconciled.
Ms Mwape said among the fundraising ventures was a gala night in Kitwe that was graced by Vice-President Inonge Wina.
“The Ministry of Finance released K10 million earlier for the rehabilitation. It is gratifying that recently another K10 million was released. Stakeholders and individuals are also coming through to make donations that we are yet to sum up,” Ms Mwape said.
Meanwhile, Sakiza Spinning Limited, the manufacturers of the Mwanacryl yarn, have donated 38 knitting machines and wool worth K170,000 to knitters affected by the Lusaka City Market inferno to help them recover from their loss.
Sakaiza Spinning Limited country manager Ruben Gnanasigaman said the company was committed to support knitters affected by the fire as seen through its corporate social responsibility programme of giving knitting machines and wool to the women.
Mr Gnanasigaman said the donation would go a long way in restoring the lost livelihoods of the 38 beneficiary knitters.
He said the company was also giving direct employment to over 140 Zambians and many more indirectly besides supporting livelihood for thousands of knitters spread across the country.
Minister in the Office of the Vice-President Sylvia Chalikosa said the Government placed a high premium on the activities at City Market and the marketeers because the success of the economy relied on both formal and informal jobs being generated.
Ms Chalikosa said the donation by Sakiza Limited was an investment that would help victims of the Lusaka City Market fires to rebuild their businesses and contribute to national development.
She said while the knitters operated, they would be able to supply families, schools and industries with clothing, with potential to export beyond borders.