Sinda District remains committed to socio-economic strategic planning as a way of complimenting the overall efforts of the Country in its quest to improve the livelihood of its citizens. Sinda District is one of the 108 Districts in the Republic of Zambia. Therefore, it does not operate in a vacuum but buys into the development process of the nation by tapping into the strategies devised in the Seventh National Development Plan (SNDP). This plan is aimed at attaining long term development objectives as outlined in the Vision 2030 which is to become “a prosperous middle income country by 2030”.
The District wishes to speed along with the nation as it departs from a Sector Based Planning approach to an Integrated or Multi-Sectoral development approach under the theme “Accelerating development efforts towards Vision 2030 without leaving anyone remaining behind”. The integrated approach recognizes the multifaceted and interlinked nature of sustainable development. This District Development Plan calls for interventions that will be tackled simultaneously through a coordinated approach to implementing development programmes and projects. This District Development plan will pick up the Multi-Sectoral National strategies which will be domesticated to Sinda District Situation with the help of other planning tools like the district situational analysis.
The District Development Plan will take into consideration development goals, realistic objectives and workable strategies in order to achieve the intended outcomes.
Location: Sinda district is found in eastern province, it is situated along the Great East Road about 120 Kms West of Chipata, the Provincial Headquarters and 460 Kms to Lusaka, Zambia’s Capital City. Sinda is further bordered by Petauke District on the West and Katete District on the East.Sinda District also shares the international boundary with the Republic of Mozambique in the South.
Climatic Conditions: Sinda District experiences three distinct seasons namely: the cool and dry season, the hot and dry season and the hot wet season. The cool season starts in April and ends in mid-August. The weather during this time of the year is generally cool and dry. Sometimes it could be wet especially in April due to showers, which mark the end of the rain season. The hot and dry season starts in mid-August and ends in early November. During this time, the temperatures are usually high with 35 degrees Celsius as the highest temperature recorded. It becomes very hot with some wind blowing. The temperature starts to fall towards the end of October and early November at the onset of the rain season characterized by light showers.
The wet season starts in mid-October to early November and lasts up to March. During this time of the year, the district experiences hot and wet conditions. The wetness is as a result of the rains. This season is also called the rain season. The rainfall is heavy between December and February. It subsides from February to March and sometimes it goes into early April. The mean annual rainfall ranges from 700 mm to 900 mm. The rains in the district usually start to fall towards the end of October with high rainfall amounts recorded around December to February. The rainfall ends in March or April. The southern part of the district receives low rainfall amounts than the northern part. The district has been experiencing drought conditions during the past four years resulting in inadequate water supply and poor crop harvests. The problem has been more pronounced in the southern part of the district.
The temperatures in Sinda range from 10oc to 35oc. The hottest month is usually October with minimum temperatures ranging from 30oc to 33oc and the highest temperature ever recorded is 35oc. The coolest period is from May to July with temperatures ranging from 10oc to 22oc with the mean temperature being 21oc. The climate is therefore conducive for various development and economic activities such as agriculture, implementation of projects and the day to day activities of the stakeholders and investors in the district.
Topography: The land is generally flat with few undulations and very few isolated rock outcrops in the area. This makes it conducive for farming and other activities to take place without much leaching and erosion or other environmental degradation. There are isolated hills in the central and northern parts of the district. The most outstanding feature in the district is the Nchingilizya hills.
Vegetation:The most prevalent vegetation formations in Sinda District include such physiognomic units as the woodlands, thickets, savanna, grasslands and wetlands.
Traditional Leadership and Ethnicity: The district is shared by Three (3) Chiefdoms namely; Chief Kawaza, Chief Kathumba and Chieftainess Nyanje who were previously of Katete and Petauke Districts.The communities are organised in village communities often led by village headmen. The main tribe of Sinda district is Chewa. Culture in Sinda district has had strong influence on development. Some of the cultural beliefs and practices have been hindrances in service delivery in the district e.g. health, education and gender. The household is mostly dominated by the male spouse, who is responsible for most of the decision-making. This is evident as participation of women is low in most community discussions or activities.
Political System and Governance: The district boasts of a total number of 17 wards, which form part of the two constituencies namely; Sinda and Kapoche. Out of the 17 wards, Sinda and Kapoche share 8 wards and 9 wards respectively. Kapoche is located in the southern part of the district while whereas Sinda is located on the northern side of the district. The two constituencies are demarcated by the Great East Road. It is therefore politically represented by eighteen (18) elected councillors and two (2) Members of Parliament. In the past five years the two constituencies were represented by the MMD. There are many political parties in the district including MMD, UPND, UNIP, PF, ZRP and FDD. However, most of these political players have not yet established permanent office structures in the district.
Demography: As of 2013, Sinda District had the estimated population of 179, 470 people. It is however important to note that even prior to Sinda’s declaration as a district, the population has been increasing steadily especially between 2011 and 2013 as can be seen in Table 1 below. Additionally, in terms of the total eligible voters as of the last general elections of 2011, the district posted 55, 752 eligible voters. See Table 1.
Table 1: District Population and Key Health Indicators
|Children 0 – 11||6, 768||4||6, 974||4||7, 179||4|
|<5 Years||33, 843||20||34, 870||20||35, 894||20|
|5 – 14 Years||82, 577||48.8||85, 081||48.8||87, 581||48.8|
|Women 15 – 49 Years||37, 228||22||38, 356||22||39, 483||22|
|All Adults 15 Years+||86, 639||51.2||89, 265||51.2||91, 889||51.2|
|Total male (All Ages)||83, 170||49.15||85, 691||49.15||88, 203||49.15|
|Total Female (All Ages)||86, 046||50.85||88, 655||50.85||91, 260||50.85|
|Population Growth Rate||2.8||2.8||2.8|
|Expected Pregnancies||9, 138||5.4||9, 415||5.4||9, 691||5.4|
|Expected Delivers||8, 799||5.2||9, 056||5.2||9, 332||5.2|
|Expected Live Births||8, 461||5||8, 717||5||8, 974||5|
Source: Ministry of Health, Sinda Zonal Health, 2016.
The high growth rate may be attributed to a high birth rate and a higher rate of in-migration compared to out-migration. The high birth rate (about 5%) may be due to the traditional practice in which girls marry very early, meaning also that the fertility rate is also raised as a result. As shown in the Table 1, the number of women in the productive age group constitutes about 22% of the whole population. Without good family planning practices, it is expected that the birth rate may continue to rise.
Major economic activities: Most people of Sinda District earn their living by farming; most of the farming activity in the district is done by peasant farmers though there are a few commercial farmers who have cattle, maize fields and some banana plantations. There is a lot of cattle and goat rearing in Sinda District. Cattle-rearing is also carried out within the Central Business District. Some farmers sell their animals for a profit to the local retailers and in Lusaka, Chipata and other surrounding areas.
- Swot analysis
THE PEOPLE’S VOICES ON DEVELOPMENT
It is the aim of the Government to promote citizens’ participation in issues that are pertinent to theirwellbeing. Inadequate citizens’ participation has been singled out as a major draw-back in so far as making informed decisions is concerned.
- THE CONSULTATIVE PROCESS
The consultative process used both the top-down and bottom-up approaches. The top-down approachentailed analyzing the national developmental trajectory with a view to determine common development
challenges and opportunities that all structures could address and/or maximize. The bottom-up approachcomprised sub-district, district and provincial levels that made assessments of their prevailingconditions, to formulate their own development plans for functions devolved to them and for input into the national planning process.
- KEY ISSUES ARISING FROM THE CONSULTATIVE PROCESS: PEOPLE’S VOICES
This section outlines key issues emanating from the Government’s engagement through the consultativeprocess. In summary, the outcomes from the consultative process are that all stakeholders were insupport of the diversification agenda with particular emphasis on agricultureand tourism.
However, a number of challenges were highlighted during the consultative process with regard to
factors that affect national development. These factors include low levels of industrialization,
infrastructure, energy, land tenure and access to finance. Utmost vigilance was observed in ensuringthat the needs and aspirations of stakeholders, especially the ordinary citizen, were taken into accountin coming up with the new development agenda.
Eastern Province has a number of comparative advantages ranging from arable land, forests andabundant wildlife that could promote tourism and its related activities and thus contribute to socioeconomic development. Being strategically located near the Nacala Port could enhance trade and furtherboost the integration of Zambia in the Zambia-Malawi-Mozambique Growth Triangle.
Consultations pointed out that the establishment of a dry port at Chipata Railway Station would improvecargo movement. The need for massive rural and urban infrastructure development aimed at enhancingdevelopment in the Province, which included tourism-related infrastructure in national parks and gamemanagement areas, was emphasized.
The proposed priority economic sector for the 7NDP under the multi-sectoral approach is Agriculture. Below are reasons for prioritizing the Agriculture Sector:
- Availability of fertile land;
- It is the main source of income and employment;
- The market is readily available for various agricultural products; and
- The district has favorable climatic conditions that support agriculture;
- IMPLEMENTATION, MONITORING AND EVALUATION
- IMPLEMENTATION OF THE DISTRICT DEVELOPMENT PLAN
The implementation of this plan will be guided by the respective 5-year strategic plans following the five Strategic Development Areas as guided by Volume I of the 7NDP, which will articulate the specific interventions to be implemented annually by identified institutions. Institutions will be required to jointly undertake programming and sequencing of projects and activities through coordinated annual operational plans, which will inform budgeting and financing mechanisms. Similarly, programme implementation, monitoring and evaluation will also be undertaken jointly.
- MONITORING AND EVALUATION
The Monitoring and Evaluation Framework for this plan is based solely upon the principles of Results-Based Management (RBM). As such the plan’s results/outcomes have been heavily informed by the National Performance Framework (NPF), which has articulated a series of results to be achieved towards the attainment of the Vision 2030. Underpinning each level of results of the Plan are Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that will track progress towards the attainment of outcomes. Additionally, the aspect of monitoring will involve the national level to consistently report on higher level indicators, while the various implementing institutions are performing their functions in an interrelated, but integrated manner towards attainment of the Plan outcomes.
Sinda District has the enormous potential to develop into one of the modern districts in Eastern Province, thanks to its geographical location and the availability of natural resource endowments. However, political-will is paramount to harnessing this development potential the district boasts of.