Sunday, 21 August 2016

Kampamba Mulenga: Copperbelt's Only Female Member of Parliament

By Paul Shalala in Kalulushi

She is the only female Member of Parliament among the 22 lawmakers on the Copperbelt.

Newly elected Patriotic Front Kalulushi Member of Parliament Kampamba Mulenga has fought her way to Manda Hill.

She was among several female parliamentary candidates on the Copperbelt who were adopted by various political parties to contest the August 11 parliamentary elections.

However, all her friends lost and she pulled through alone.

Her victory is good news for gender activists but the fact that she is the only female MP in the second largest province in terms of registered voters, is a source of worry to people who follow women politics closely.

Between 2011 and 2016, the Copperbelt had four elected female Members of Parliament in Kabushi (Ndola), Chifubu (Ndola) Chililabombwe and Lufwanyama.

Back to Kampamba, her election has proved that being consistent in politics can also take one to the national stage.

At a personal level, she is a mother of three who still does household chores like any other mother.

When this blogger met her for an interview, the Kalulushi MP was busy in the kitchen preparing food for her family.

Her rise to national prominence is out of hardwork.

"I was first elected party District Treasurer. Later i was elected the first District Chairperson for the Patriotic Front in 2011. At that time, it was difficult to win such a position as a woman and we were still in opposition," said Kampamba.

She says her hard work in the party led to late President Michael Sata recognising her and making her part of his government.

"President Sata later appointed me District Commissioner for Kalulushi."

It is this civil service position which helped position Kampamba well with the people of Kalulushi, a town which has one constituency.

In that role, Kampamba was one of the few female District Commissioners on the Copperbelt.

And even after leaving the office a few years ago, she went back to politics and stealthily prepared for the adoptions ahead of the 2016 parliamentary elections.

As usual, she was pitted against men within the ruling party but she prevailed.

During the actual elections, she beat all the five men who stood against her.

Now that she has been elected, she has a few words for women on the Copperbelt.
Rashida (left) and Kampamba celebrating their victory

"I will work hard and inspire more women to stand as MPs in 2021. We need more women to take up leadership positions. And for the people of Kalulushi, i want to assure them that i will not disapoint them, i will work towards my campaign promises and develop our constituency," she said.

As she embarks on her five year tour of duty at Manda Hill, the hopes of people in Kalulushi is that she will carry on the mantle and deliver where men could have failed to deliver.

Kampamba is not the only woman elected in Kalulushi.

A number of coucillors are female and the new Mayor of Kalulushi Rashida Mulenga is also female.

Despite sharing the same surname, Rashida and Kampamba are not related.

Their own relation is the quest to develop Kalulushi.

4 comments:

  1. GOOD narrative,also include her education background

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  2. Is Kampamba the daughter of MMD minister Sonny Mulenga?

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