Opinion: City Clean Up, What Happens When the Soldiers Return to the Barracks?

The defence forces driven clean-up exercise of Lusaka city has opened newer possibilities for the citizens of the country’s garbage ridden city.

Before this exercise citizens have lived with the illusion that nothing can be done to clean up the city and given it the garden city touch. It had become customary for citizens to throw litter about, with cholera almost becoming an annually acceptable occurrence.

Just 48 hours of the defence forces taking over the streets, Lusaka has apart from the poor drainage system, looked almost as clean a city as any well-meaning citizen would love to see. The streets have been ridded of the irksome presence of vendors that have previously resisted being confined to the markets. The little effort by the council to sweep the streets has shown bits of its beauty with a wash of fresh air.

Government has shown its seriousness by sending cabinet ministers on the streets to re-enforce its message and intentions to the public directly. Presidential spokesperson Amos Chanda and ministers Vincent Mwale and Dr Chitalu Chilufya went about the garbage infested areas to explain the market shutdown to the public.

While it is everyone’s hope that the clean remains as it is, there are some niggling areas that may require attention before the honeymoon graduates to a state of permanency.

What happens to the hundreds of displaced vendors from the streets? What about penalties for a public so easily given throwing litter anyhow? Once the military personnel returns to the barracks who is going to forcefully enforce the measures put up by the soldiers? Maybe the citizenry should just enjoy the spectacle while it lasts.


  1. Amos

    Its a good job

  2. dowell

    That’s a good idea

  3. Concerned Citizen

    How do you remove vendors from their trading places without providing an alternative source of living? am not getting it… What will happen to their families? How will they survive now that what they entirely depended upon is no more? Please people provide an alternative before you bring chaos. People may resort to thieving and prostitution as a desperate measure.

    • Powder Chinena

      Crime doesn’t pay. It is stupid to argue that the only way to provide for your family is by putting other people’s lives at risk by promoting disease. Two wrongs cannot make a right! You cannot say you will engage in prostitution just because the rest of us need to be saved from your disease promoting activities! There are lots of empty spaces in costly markets which should be occupied by the same street vendors! Let them get back to the markets in the compounds, and the other designated places. That way, they can begin contributing to the treasury through payment of taxes, and perhaps this can help alleviate the shortage of medicine and other facilities in the hospitals!

      • Moses

        You are you talking, that’s true

      • Chikala

        Your speaking wisely Mr I support you idea.

      • Gbvvictim

        The military must not leave the city until aftet 2 years after they hand over to the council. Some people are like pigs and they would again litter as soon as there is no one to monitor them

    • kufahakurambwe

      Sata mindset..

    • Remmy

      You’re right but also think about how fast cholera is killing people


      Well spoken

    • Lesley

      I have a question for the majority who are speaking about the vending and stuff. I want you to ask yourself this question; Did they get that stand from the council??? If Not, why did they buy a stand from a cader who has no clue about what paying rents or contributions to the council means??? I want Us to Reason together; example, if you need a driver’s license you have to go to RTSA to write apptitude tests before going to the road, why should you go to matero n do shortcut things? I call that foolishness or stupidity for lack of better terms!! The Government of Zambia ??


      My brother, somethings a not supposed to be compromised. when its the matter of life and death, who cares about one that has not eaten when you are on a quest to save the dying. Am sure there are other things they can do to earn a living, don’t encourage people to do wrong in the name of finding a living. we also need a clean environment. let there be no compromise on this, there are a lot of places to trade from other than the streets please.

  4. D.L

    Citizens: What is the role of the Mayor of the City of Lusaka?
    President: Sleeping and dream big for the city after death.
    Citizens: Will the Mayor get his salary this month for doing nothing?
    President: Why depriving him of his hard to earn salary? He is entitled to his monthly salary as stipulated in the Local Government law. He will also get his allowances for being reluctant for cholera to take charge and bring about the soldiers to work instead of seeing them fatten up and becoming lazy in the Barracks.
    Citizens: Why bringing soldiers to conduct this clean instead of using council workers?
    President: Who brought down the Powerful Comrade Robert Mugabe? My plan is to eliminate all the soldiers through cholera so that no one can realise of thinking of taking over power as they did to my elder brother next door.
    Citizens: This decision is not good sir. What else are you planning to apart from eliminating the soldiers?
    President: All those who are NOT supporting me will be resigning one by one. I will be replacing them with those who are on my heart, even foreigners will be appointed into government. A good example was the recruitment of Chinese nationals in the police service.
    Citizens: Mmmmmmm! No more words Mr president.

  5. D.L

    Where is Faza Frank Bwalya to take up Kalaba’s position as Foreign Affairs Minister?

  6. Mathews c zyambo

    That is good

    • venancio

      Continue to do this because Lusaka is the capital city.

      • Hambani

        Lusaka was an eye sore! great works soldiers never leave the streets until all traders go to Soweto Market

  7. Derby

    Well done Bwanas God bless you all involved in the exercise, my salute to you, nayuma mwami…….

  8. Graham Nyongi

    let it be done to Ndola and Kitwe as well.

  9. jr vm

    well come cholera even this year before rain season we need you you’re working like pressure group to our government they can not see for them self’s

  10. When this cleaning end

    How long will the cleaning last

  11. moses kamanga


  12. Sata


  13. Mukuka

    Thanks for the clean up . we Zambians are dirty so don’t blem any one not even the government if we were clean knowing that that’s where we find our living all this wouldn’t have been there. Job well done

  14. Kopala

    When a leader is deciding for the masses, he has to look at some many aspects. We should ve found alternative places where Street vending can take place while the rest is being cleaned up. Otherwise you should say there will never ever be Street vending which makes sense. I should guess that’s the reason armed soldiers, I mean soldiers on the street dealing with street kids????? Oh my God! I leave it there.

  15. sunday k

    job wel done

    • Sj

      @ sunday k. It won’t be long before the dirt builds up AGAIN. Hiegine in this country is left where it’s taught i.e the Home Economics classes and classrooms. It (Hiegine) is not taken as a life long skill. Comment

    • Hambani

      So it should be done to kitwe urgently

  16. Sunday K

    city council shud also wake up wat about distrcts that do not have mabwanaz? ine teine.

  17. Jolomi

    thats a good idea

  18. elisha

    Nice job well done!!!

  19. elisha

    Nice job well done!!!

  20. elisha


  21. Hambani

    Bravo Mr President keep up the good works life is more important than death by cholera! Bravo soldiers & ministry of health!

  22. Kapembwa simbao

    All the way

  23. danny

    When are schools opening all provinces because of the same out break of cholera


    Well done mr president n let it b done in all de parts of Zambia to avoid cholera

  25. Mazimayumu


  26. mulongoti

    Mr concerned. Citizen you can not do street vending without life so it’s life first there so many places to sale from those who want to be prostitutes HIV, hepatitis b and sits will catch up with them and those who want to b thieves they be at the grand opening of the Great mwembeshi maximum prisons as partispants soldiers weldone

  27. Mwansa

    Its good idea but am not happy With what’s happening at our market town center.big shops are allowed to be opened while our inside not.how is it so coz we all sale somethings(hardware)

  28. leo lena ngoma

    Yea its a very good job, but as he said don’t blame any one we are all dirty people. After or Before one month yoy will see the clean city if it will be the clean city any more. It Will be like they have reversed the time. 😀

  29. Mr J

    But the government knows that we face a challenge of this disease every year why did they not put measures to prevent this rather then beening serious at the last minute when we have lost lives the government must have policies or planns on how to tickles some these issues it is known that every year we this challenges and we also have professional who deal with this problem in our country

  30. bravo

    After this what next tell us

  31. Prexie

    Then what comes next after the clean up?
    I mean where will you take the street vendors?
    Cause those people will probably need a place where they can do there business from… At least they work hard to help themselves they don’t steal but work hard to get whatever they want…

  32. Hastings

    The presidential direct military cleanup innitiative excercise is a welcome move.Otherwise the city of Lusaka would have turned into a dumping site source cholera.They should do the same in all townships house by house either easy way or hardway.

  33. chipo Muchanga

    Let us all work together in seeing that our country is clean

  34. Tabeth

    Good job

  35. AKA

    Dis issue of cholera is brought abt by de poor salaries of council workers these pipo ar nt paid according to de job dey ar doing dere salaries must be improved coz dere service is more important Dan sum one who is just seated in an office drinking tea

  36. luyando kl

    It’s sad measures had to be taken after it has already spread. The government should put street binz

  37. well done soldies

    well done but late action living people suffering,if it was early the better,now parents will pay their business capitals to their children’s schools,in which it is said to be solving the problem by creating the problems. Remember to double the windows n the doors so that we are protected from thieves will be brought about and prostitution as well as…they had something to do now have non which will now increase to the HIV/AIDS percentage….

  38. jedidiah

    The priority here is to save as many lives as possible, the issue of were the vendor Wil go doesn’t count fr now, pipe are dying n cholera cases are jst keep on accumulating country wide, it doesn’t make any sense at all riskin the lives of the majority pipe at the expense of the minority vendors, there so many public trading spaces in our country so let the vendors go there n pay wat z due to the council n trade from there,these are the same pipe who doge the councils.this move by the government should be welcomed by every well meaning zambian,it z ever so illiterate fr someone to politicise the move jst lyk wat I saw on prime TV news Kanyama residents tooķ to the street rioting fr something beneficial fr their own good that’s why isukulu lisuma.instead of them to pave way fr the clean up they took a wrong move, rioting fr somethin beneficial z not normal more especially were health z concerned. this campagn z a country wide move Nt jst in Kanyama so I jst wonder y they behaved in tht manner.

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