By AARON CHIYANZO
MINISTER of Lands and Natural Resources, Jean Kapata has rubbished claims by GEARS Initiative Zambia executive director, McDonald Chipenzi that she allocated herself a plot in the Lusaka East Local Forest Reserve number 27.
Ms Kapata said as minister, she did not have any powers to allocate land as that was the duty of the Commissioner of Lands.
She said in an interview that Mr Chipenzi was just bent on tarnishing her image as he was aware that ministers did not allocate land.
Ms Kapata reiterated that the commissioner of Lands gave land after being granted authority by the Head of State.
She said many other Zambians were given land in the said area by the Commissioner of lands and not the minister.
“A minister does not give land, it is the Commissioner of Lands who allocates land to Zambians. Many Zambians were given land in the same area.
The Commissioner gives land after being granted authority by the President,” said Ms Kapata.
Mr Chipenzi is reported to have demanded that Chief Justice Irene Mambilima appoint a tribunal to investigate whether or not Ms Kapata had breached the law by allocating herself a plot in the Lusaka East Local Forest Reserve number 27.
Ms Chipenzi said the Parliamentary and Ministerial Code of Conduct Act of the Laws of Zambia provided that any citizen could apply to the Chief Justice to appoint a tribunal to investigate if a Minister or Member of Parliament had used his or her position to gain pecuniary advantage in such matters as land allocation.