NOVEMBER 15, 2022

Kagem expands Lufwanyama’s Masasa Primary School

LUFWANYAMA, ZAMBIA – Kagem has completed expansion work at the Masasa Primary School in Lufwanyama, reflecting its ongoing commitment to supporting local education.

The school is set to create a more conducive learning environment for pupils in the area, improve their literacy levels and ultimately enhance their employability. It is also expected that the school renovations will help to boost enrolment at Masasa which currently educates 475 pupils (233 boys and 242 girls).

The project was wholly funded by Kagem, believed to be the single largest producing emerald mine in the world, and focused on the construction of a block of three classrooms, two offices and a strong room for examination papers, as well as two teachers’ residences and ablution blocks.

The handover ceremony was graced by His Royal Highness Chief Lumpuma, Lufwanyama District Commissioner Justin Mwalikwa, Lufwanyama District Education Board Secretary (DEBS), Juma Phiri, and Lufwanyama District Council Chairperson (Mayor) Annie Kapandula among other dignitaries.

Speaking during the handover ceremony, Chief Lumpuma noted that the classroom block had come at the right time owing to the area’s growing population, which was creating an increase in demand for places in local schools.

“This has come at the right time as the population of our children has been growing and we need more classrooms to accommodate them,” he said.

“Government under the leadership of President Hakainde Hichilema recently employed about 30,000 teachers, of which we (Masasa) got a share, and they need houses to stay in. Therefore, we thank Kagem for building this infrastructure to meet the growing demand. We hope to see more houses built so that more teachers can be accommodated in modern housing.”

“I would like to thank Kagem for helping Lumpuma in various activities like farming and other social activities. I wish to urge them to continue supporting the youth through educational programmes as this will help keep them from illicit activities. I urge Kagem to continue working with me to identify other areas that need development in the area.”

The school was opened in 1996 and currently has 20 teachers with a 50:50 gender balance.

In his keynote address, Lufwanyama District Commissioner Justin Mwalikwa said the expansion project marked another milestone in Kagem and the government’s long-standing relationship, adding that the mine’s continued funding in community infrastructure would cushion the government’s expenditure on infrastructure development.

He said: “Kagem is one of the largest mining companies in our district and country. In taking recognition of that, Kagem has been doing a lot of work in terms of corporate social responsibility projects, among them being the construction of Masasa’s three-classroom block and two teacher’s houses. They also intend to build a bridge, which will be called the Masasa Bridge, to replace the current wooden bridge.”

“Your support today, and others like it, is a very important undertaking in that it will cushion government expenditure in infrastructure development. This structure we are receiving will enable this school to grow and accommodate higher grades up to Grade 12.”

“We are very grateful for this gesture, and we hope to see more from you.”

Speaking at the same event, Gemfields’ Corporate Responsibility Director, Edward Johnson said the mine was keen to provide funding to support education in its area of operation as it believed it provided the best chance of success for local youth.

“Education is such an important resource. Children are the future for Zambia and the education they receive here [Masasa Primary School] will provide them with the opportunity for a better future,” he said.

“Zambia is a beautiful country with some of the best emeralds in the world. Our job at Kagem is to mine the emeralds, sell them at auction and bring the money back to Zambia. And when we do that, we hope to provide further funding to build more hospitals, support education, and help create more opportunities for job creation. We are happy to support Masasa and Lufwanyama district as a whole and we look forward to furthering stakeholder engagement to promote more growth.”

Kagem’s approach to supporting community projects in Lufwanyama is to ensure maximum impact through a long-term sustainable strategy which is mindful of the demands and needs of local people and works with community leaders, the government, and local residents in all the mine’s projects.

The Lufwanyama-based mine, which is majority owned by Gemfields – in a model partnership with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) – has been thriving as a world-leading miner of responsibly sourced gemstones and Kagem remains dedicated to supporting community projects, in the areas of health, education and livelihoods, surrounding its operation.

Specifically, Kagem funds the construction of schools and health centres, supports farming co-operatives and provides employment opportunities to local people in the Copperbelt Province.

Lufwanyama District Education Board Secretary (DEBS), Juma Phiri said his office would supply 20 brand new desks to be used in the new classroom block. Kagem will also provide desks for the new classrooms as well as office furniture for the offices.


Gillian Langmead
Langmead & Baker Ltd
Tel: +260 979 060705

Head office
Helena Choudhury
Head of PR and Communications
Tel: +44 (0)207 518 3420

Kagem responsible sourcing highlights

  • Kagem is committed to ensuring that the community continues to benefit positively from its operations through various sustainability programmes focused on alleviating poverty and aligned with government policies, the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Vision 2030
  • The mine has spent more than USD 2.8 million on community projects, including:
    • Rehabilitation of the 18.7km road connecting Chief Nkana and Chief Lumpuma’s chiefdoms from Kandole to Kafwaya village in Lufwanyama district
    • Construction of the Nkana Health Centre
    • Construction and equipping of a new Chapula Secondary School
    • Construction of new buildings at Chapula Primary School
    • Construction of new buildings at Masasa Primary School
    • Building of teachers’ accommodation at Masasa Primary School
    • Building of teachers’ accommodation at Chantete A primary School
    • Support to sustainable livelihoods through Agriculture Cooperatives namely Blessings, Kapila Green Farmers, Tweende, Twasanta, Nkana, Matafwali, and Kafwaya women’s cooperative projects
    • Pledge of USD 220,000 to support Lumpuma Multi-Purpose Cooperative Society (LMPCS) farming initiative
    • Improvements to Chief Nkana and Chief Lumpuma’s palaces
  • Kagem has renewed its partnership with both the Copperbelt University (CBU) and the University of Zambia (UNZA), committing to new scholarship programmes totalling USD 345,000. This follows the previous commitment of USD 345,000 to sponsor students from the geological and mining engineering departments at the School of Mines at UNZA and CBU over a period of eight years.
  • Kagem currently provides 1,150 direct jobs, with 94% of the workforce being local.

About Kagem Mining

Kagem Mining Ltd, based in Lufwanyama, is believed to be the world’s single largest producing emerald mine. Kagem is 75% owned by Gemfields, in a model partnership with the Zambian government.

Kagem aims to emulate the values of Gemfields and operate in a way that contributes positively to the national economy, while taking a leading role in modernising the coloured gemstone sector and building sustainable livelihoods for the communities around the mine. Kagem believes that coloured gemstones should be mined and marketed by championing three key values – transparency, legitimacy and integrity.

Gemfields is a world-leading miner of responsibly sourced coloured gemstones. In addition to Kagem, Gemfields is the operator and 75% owner of Montepuez Ruby Mining in Mozambique (at one of the most significant recently discovered ruby deposits in the world), as well as bulk sampling licences in Ethiopia, amongst others.

Gemfields has developed a proprietary grading system and a pioneering auction and trading platform to provide a consistent supply of coloured gemstones to the global jewellery market.

Fabergé – an iconic name with an exceptional heritage – is a member of the Gemfields Group. The beauty of Fabergé’s designs and craftsmanship, helps to raise consumer awareness of responsibly sourced coloured gemstones.

As well as supplying a significant share of the world’s rough rubies and emeralds, Gemfields initiates activations to build desire for coloured gemstones: for example, collaborations with international jewellery brands and other creative partners. Often surprising, unexpected and unique, these collaborations are chosen to promote consumer awareness and increase the appeal of coloured gemstones, raising their profile, and, in turn, providing greater benefit to their place of origin in Africa.








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