Mazabuka News

Written By: The Lowdown - Sep• 30•00

Coming Up

National Polo X Championships at Lubombo on September 2 and 3. This is a great annual event with teams from all around the country. Camping facilities will be available and meals served throughout the weekend. Dennis Bolton will be doing his DJ stint on the Saturday night. Make this a weekend to remember!


Mazabuka Club’s Outdoor Cooking Competition.

The Outdoor Cooking Competition of the year … is being held on Saturday 16 September. This year there’ll be three different categories – Professionals (ANYone who cooks for a living); Amateur adults; and kids (under 12). So get your teams organised NOW. There’ll be a charge of K10,000 for non-member teams, which should consist of a maximum of four people (remember the fewer per team, the more prizes!) Each team has to prepare and cook two courses (either a starter and main or main and dessert). Judging will start at around 6.30 p.m. If you’d like to enter phone Glenda on 704-485 or Carina on 251-895 or 097-771-178.


St. Pauls Training Centre S – Holiday Courses.

St. Paul’s training centre in Mazabuka is a hive of industry during term time with its three full time courses in tailoring, metal work and carpentry. Because of this, they have decided to open the centre up during the school holidays for anyone wishing to do crash courses in these three very useful subjects. Sadly, response has, so far been poor, and they may not have enough people to start on the metal work or carpentry course. This surely is an ideal opportunity for school leavers without jobs to come forward and try their hand at something technical and useful.


Buzzing Rhodes Park

Many Lusaka residents drive past it every day, but few enter it – one of Lusaka’s older suburbs – Rhodes Park. Forming a triangle between the Great East Road, Church Road and Addis Ababa Drive, this suburb is home to many small businesses, all of them with something different to offer. We took a look around and this is what we found.

Turning into Bwinjimfumu Road from Church Road, on our immediate right was a park, now fenced in, but when I was a kid, it was a pleasant place to relax and admire the plants or to play on the swings and jungle gyms. We called it Froggy Park because of a statue of a frog in the fishpond. It is now used as a venue for weddings and other celebrations. On to the four-way stop at the junction of Bwinjimfumu and Parirenyatwa Roads. Lusaka’s drivers still don’t seem to know what to do at these stops. It’s really very simple – you give way to the vehicle on your right, and the first vehicle to arrive there is the one that other drivers give way to. The next vehicle to cross is the one on the right of the vehicle that has just gone. The secret of course is that only one vehicle crosses and not all the vehicles behind it. They wait until it has gone full circle, in an anti-clockwise direction, before it is their turn. Obviously, for it to work, drivers do need to show some degree of courtesy to other road users, but if you are unsure of whether to go or not, edge forward, but do look out for those dangerous drivers who don’t even slow down.

A right turn into Parirenyatwa and a left into Joseph Mwilwa Road, and we were in the heart of the suburb, with no less than seven places to visit. First up on the right is Pilcher Graphics, one of the older design studios and promoters of art in Lusaka. On the same property is BC Farms where you can buy your fresh fruit and vegetables as well as other home-made titbits. Also in the same premises is Gallery Gear where you can take your film for developing or have your picture framed.

Next door is Jane Taylor where you can spend a relaxing afternoon having aromatherapy or reflexology, but we had to give it a miss this time as we had work to do – Rhodes Park had to be discovered today, but we’ll be back for that afternoon which we owe ourselves.

From there it was on to Serendipity, the as yet unopened home furnishings business of Carey Page and Val Heath. Both Carey and Val were in the thick of things, rushing about trying to get everything in place for the opening on Saturday 16 September.

Opposite Serendipity is Mercury Couriers, where you can send off your urgent documents by courier or letters for posting abroad or if you’re lucky they will have received a letter or parcel for you, but there was nothing for us today, but maybe next time.

Further down on the same side of the road is Burco Business Solutions, suppliers of computer hardware and software and also offering training, repairs and technical support.

From there into Omelo Mumba Road and the first stop on the left, travelling away from the Great East Road, is Airwaves Avocet where you can book an air charter for your business trip or your weekend. We dreamed of exotic destinations, but time was running out and Rhodes Park was still waiting.

In the same premises we considered a pedicure for our aching feet at Bliss Hair and Beauty Spa, but we’ll make our next visit longer so that we can have the works – manicure, massage, facial and wax.

By this time, it was midday and Chit Chat, a little further up was just in the right spot for lunch. This ever-popular restaurant serves a good variety of pastas, salads and other interesting meals. It also has an outdoor play area for the little ones, so if you have young children, it’s an ideal place because you are really able to relax. On the same premises is Something Special which, as their advert says, has something for every occasion.

From there, it was on to Salon Xper-tease, where Graham (of Jesus Christ Superstar fame) and the girls are able to do amazing things when you’re having a bad-hair day.

If you are arranging a conference or want to promote your business or buy a trophy, then Image Promotions is for you. Lee-Anne Singh will step right in and run your conference for you or arrange for those corporate gifts with your company name and logo. With telephones and doors opening and closing, the office was buzzing with activity – the job at hand was the arrangements for the Mines 2000 Forum which is being held in Lusaka during October

From Image Promotions we backtracked down to Chigalika Road which runs into Lagos Road, past the Aylmer May Cemetery on our left. Restoration work on the Chapel is still ongoing, but the Cemetery is looking much improved. Well done to this group of volunteers. Then left into Lubuto Road, through the avenue of Khaya nyasica trees, and another left into Matandani Crescent to The Bureau, where colour separations are done for the Lowdown’s cover every month. Readers of the hardcopy need no introduction to their work. Likewise the next business we visited, Adworks McCann-Erickson on Lubuto Road, who design the cover of the Lowdown every month.

Last stop was Gerritz Home Catering, where owner Gerritz Pelchen was putting together some of his mouthwatering meals for a wedding.

After that, we were ready to wend our weary way home, with promises to go back again soon to this suburb, teeming with small and medium businesses run by enthusiastic entrepreneurs.

Pirate Parrots

Any day of the week you can buy a parrot on-route to Chisamba along the Great North Road. Take your pick. A nice big Cape Parrot ( Poicephalus robustus) or a pair of smaller Meyers Parrots ( Poicephalus meyeri). Stop and the bird “sellers” come running. Prices range from K15,000 –K30,000 per bird.

Most of these birds are in a poor way. They have been confined to little wire cages and fed a dry diet. They are dangled in front of fast moving cars and trucks and many are in a serious state of shock. Most have had their wing feathers pulled not clipped. If they survive the shock, 99% of these birds do not tame or talk and many, without correct management will not fly again.

Once a raid by game rangers and police in Chisamba raked in over 120 birds cooped up in a hut, 20-25 stuffed in a tiny cage. The catchers have a “Joker” bird that they tie, by the leg, to a stake on the ground and cover the ground around him with bird lime, a sticky substance made from the parasitic fig tree. The “joker” screams and shouts at the top of his voice and the caring gregarious flocks of Meyers come to investigate the commotion. They get themselves stuck to the ground and are caught, hopefully biting the hell out of their captors. Their pin feathers are ruthlessly pulled out and they are thrown in mud huts, sometimes hundreds of them to one hut where they are pulled out two by two for sale on the road. Look closely in the cages and you will see one “fresh” bird and one “mankey” bird. After a few days on the roadside, the birds either die or are swooped for fresher ones!

Buy these birds and you are guilty of purchasing a protected species. Get caught and you have committed a serious offence. Under Section 35 of The National Parks and Wildlife (Protected Animals) Order Schedule 2, these birds are a protected animal and you would under the Wildlife Act be guilty of buying a protected animal and under Section 129 (1995).

The law states:

“129. (1) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (2) any person who is convicted of an offence under this Act which involves being in possession of, or selling, buying, importing or exporting, any protected animal or meat or any trophy of a protected animal, in contravention of this act, shall be liable, upon conviction, to imprisonment without the option of a fine for a term not exceeding seven years.

So, for the vast numbers of truck drivers who are apparently buying these birds and hiding them in their cool boxes for export to SA where they fetch good prices….. I hope you get caught. For those of you who stop and buy these birds out of ignorance….be forewarned. For those of you who have already bought these birds…. get them to the re-hab aviary in Chisamba where they will be taught to fly again and released. If you are brave enough to stop and confiscate these birds, good for you but hand them over to the authorities. If you have to hold them for a few days…give them lots of fruit, fresh maize, some sunflower and nuts and good fresh water.


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