Chinese investment safe in Zambia – Police

DEPUTY Inspector-General of Police for operations Malcom Mulenga has assured the Chinese community in Zambia of increased safety and that their businesses will operate in a business- friendly environment.

In a statement issued in Lusaka, Mr Mulenga and a team of senior officers held a meeting with Zambia China Association president Zhang Jian on Saturday in Lusaka and assured the Chinese community that they should not worry about their businesses being threatened because the police service had heightened security measures.

Mr Mulenga said the police service was aware of the security concerns over Chinese investment in the country and was working hard to ensure that such investment was protected because it had created employment for many Zambians.

“We are happy as Government that you have brought enormous investments to this country which has resulted in creation of employment for many of our people. We also understand the challenge of security concerns that you face as foreign investment hence our undertaking that we work together in ensuring that you operate in a safe environment.

‘‘This meeting we have held surely signals our resolve to work together with you through a memorandum of understanding to which we shall all abide by in ensuring that you are safe and your businesses are secure,” Mr Mulenga said.

Mr Mulenga advised the Chinese community to be security-conscious all the time because there were some disgruntled Zambians who would want to take advantage of their foreign status to abuse and steal from them.

“Let me caution the Chinese nationals conniving with Zambians to engage in criminal activities that they should stop this dangerous trend. Not all Chinese nationals have the tendency of conniving with Zambians to engage in criminal activities and this must stop forthwith and we shall not tolerate it,” Mr Mulenga said.

He advised Chinese businessmen to avoid taking huge sums of money to the bank without police escort because of the risk of robberies.

Mr Mulenga cautioned the Chinese against boasting about their wealth while in public places because criminals would always take advantage and attack them.

And Mr Zhang said the ZCA would ensure that Chinese nationals running business in Zambia followed the law and did not engage in wrongdoing.

“We realise the good relationship that our two governments have enjoyed over the years and so as ZCA, we shall take advantage of this situation to grow these relations as well as enhance business interests.

‘‘I can safely state that it’s only a few disgruntled Chinese nationals that could be engaging in criminal activities.  As ZCA, we shall work closely with the police so that the safety of our members and business interests are secured,’’ Mr Zhang said.

Mr Zhang said he had been in Zambia for more than 20 years and many of his business colleagues in the country were engaged in genuine businesses.

‘‘We are therefore keen in building a relationship with the police so that our interests as Chinese business community as well as that of Zambia are protected and secured. We are happy to operate in Zambia where there is political stability and citizens are friendly,” Mr Zhang said.