In the heat of strained relations between Chinese nationals and locals Kitwe District Commissioner Binwell Mpundu has engaged the Chinese Association in Zambia to clear out the animosity between the two peoples.
Matters came to a head following the reported accidental shooting of a 17 year old girl in Chimwemwe Township last week by a Chinese national.
Mpundu said government was concerned that the Chinese were now being associated with all manner of vices that could compromise their standing among Zambians.
He stated that the recent negative media reports on the conduct of Chinese investors were now becoming a serious source of concern to government.
“The many cases of Chinese nationals being caught without papers or doing things that they did not say they are coming to do in Zambia are worrying us. I have come with a good message that we want to build a good working relationship,” Mpundu said.
“In our country there are a lot of potential investments. So it must be a give and take relationship, it must be based on mutual trust, why is it that for the many years you have been in Zambia you have not been caught in these vices it’s because you have built a good relationship. It is possible that you can help other Chinese to change this perception.”
He said the recent happenings are not helping on the investment relations between the two countries.
Mpundu further reminded Chinese that Zambians have become agitated because of taking over all businesses meant for locals as opposed to major businesses.
“Why are we having these bad reports? There is a shooting here, there is shooting there, there is a beating here, there is under payment there, ill-treatment here, I mean a Chinese is caught with ABDC, why do we have this?” he said.
“It is not health. Why are some Zambians beginning to hate you? Is it because you are taking out every other business they own? Now the Chinese have gone in Kapoto compound, to even own small shops in Kapoto, that is inciting Zambians now because they don’t have anywhere to do business, the competition between the Chinese and Zambians is not level, the anger is because you are not treating them well and taken away their business.”
Xin who is also Copperbelt Chapter President has urged his Chinese counterparts to make peace with Zambians and build on a good working relationship.
“We wish to call on our fellow Chinese to make peace with Zambians, if you want to be safe in Zambia you need to have a good relationship with the community. We are sorry about the incident in Chimwemwe, we are going to help the family, we wish all Zambians friends that this is just an accident we will try our best to avoid such incidences,” Xin said.