Zambia Needs “to harness mineral resources” for Sustainability: Jesuit Institute Official

Dieudonne Micomyiza, JCTR Programs Officer in Solwezi, North western Province of Zambia. Credit: JCTR

Zambia needs to use the mineral resources in the country for sustainable development, an official of the Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection (JCTR) has said. 

In a message obtained by ACI Africa, JCTR Programs Officer in Solwezi, North western Province of Zambia, advocates for “a mineral audit” as a starting point and the assurance that the minerals offer value for money.

“Zambia is rich in mineral resources. For us to get good returns from the mining sector, we need to harness the mineral resources for sustainable (development),” Dieudonne Micomyiza said. 

Mr. Micomyiza who is based in Zambia’s mineral rich Province said the Southern African nation will benefit from the mineral resources if there are good policies governing the minerals sector. 

“First, we need to take as a nation is to do a mineral audit,” the JCTR official said, and added, “We need to know how much minerals we have and what is being mined by the various mining corporations that have been operating in Zambia."


He explained, "If we know what is being mined, we will know how to tax the products and if we know what is being taxed, we will be able to get enough resources for the country."

After carrying out a mineral audit, the official of the research, education and advocacy institution based in Zambia’s capital, Lusaka said, relevant authorities need to ensure that the country gains a good market for the minerals and ensure Zambians get the appropriate returns. 

"We need to have a good deal in terms of getting enough mineral revenue from our minerals, and leaving enough for the investors that are doing the exploration and mining to continue running their businesses," Mr. Micomyiza said. 

He underscored the need to transform the minerals into imperishable assets that will be used for development. He said, "Mineral resources will run out at some point. What we need is to transform the minerals into something that is sustainable, on top of the ground." 

For Mr. Micomyiza, the agricultural sector in Zambia that needs mechanizing offers an investment avenue for proceeds from mineral resources in the country. 

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"We have an agricultural sector that is too agrarian, not mechanized," he said, and posed, "How do we get these resources to invest into the agricultural sector so that we have a vibrant agricultural sector that is offering employment to our people?" 

He said the Southern Africa nation needs to industrialize the agricultural sector as "no country has developed without industrialization." 

The JCTR Programs Officer in Solwezi further said that Zambia needs to invest in companies that will add value to the minerals sourced in the country. 

Investing in such companies, he said, "will ensure that we are producing, for instance, copper cables and add value to what we are getting from the ground."

Mr. Micomyiza added that local companies will also create employment for the people. He said, "Through these minerals, we need to ensure that we produce something more to what we get from the ground. This will lead to sustainable development.”


Zambia, a major producer of copper and cobalt, is ranked as the seventh and second highest producer of copper and cobalt, respectively, in the world. 

Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.