[By Stanslous Ngosa in Mpulungu]
PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu is determined to ensure the Lake Tanganyika Development Project (LTDP) is implemented, says water development minister Rapahel Nakacinda.
Nakacinda, who is touring the northern circuit, said the project is critical to protecting the ecological integrity of the lake basin and improving people’s lives.
The US $29.62 million Lake Tanganyika Development Project is set to boost social and economic growth.
He said President Lungu wanted the project to succeed because it would also improve the fish supply.
“That is the reason why he sent me to come and check on the progress of the project so that it is completed within the timeframe,” he said after touring the project in Mpulungu.
He said over 70,000 people were expected to benefit from the project.
“In addition, about 30,000 people will indirectly benefit from the project along the commodity value chain development. About 1,000 rural youths, who presently lack employment opportunities, will be targeted by the project through training and income generating activities,” Nakacinda said.
The Lake Tanganyika Development Project was formulated within the framework of the Vision 2030, with which the country aims at becoming a prosperous middle-income nation.
The integrated project is aimed at protecting the ecological integrity of the Lake Tanganyika basin.
It is also meant to improve the quality of life for the population around the basin through provision of essential economic infrastructure.
It will be implemented over a five-year period in two districts: Mpulungu and Nsama, which are within the lake’s catchment area.
In addition, the project will facilitate the conservation and preservation of both wildlife and the heritage resources in the area, especially the national park, which has the potential to contribute to economic development.
On the challenges which the project implementation is facing, Nakacinda said government would engage all multisectoral players.