Arrived in Lusaka at 0630 after a 10 hour flight from Heathrow. Didn’t get much sleep on the plane.
We picked up a 4 wheel drive pick up truck at the airport and drove into Lusaka in the rush hour. People travelling to work and school in anonymous minibusses. Lots of traffic. Lively place.
Staying at the Protea Hotel on Cairo Road.
Visited the British High Commission and met with Dax Patel. She confirmed Zambia is a declared Christian nation. Zambia has the highest number of registered charitable groups of any African nation. Asked about setting up a charity here. She advised there would be danger if and when funds ever ran out. Also problems if funding is not directed to where it was supposed to go or if the charity was not running how it was originally meant to. We should follow the right procedure and contact the Ministry of Social Welfare to register a charitable organisation. She mentioned a Chipata charity where the person running it sought to import a vehicle in his own name but use it for the charity. There were issues at the border over import permissions and the individual was charged and criticised by the local politicians. Accountability was essential to ensure money went to the right place. There were tax rules which needed strict adherence. We needed to be clear about who were the beneficiaries. There wo
We visited the Anglican Cathedral of the Holy Cross and met with the Dean, the Very Reverend Canon Charley Thomas.uld be issues of licenses and reclaiming tax rebates, and the beneficiary must be a school/organisation and not an individual. She ran a children’s charity with her husband for aids orphans. Casisi orphanage near the airport. We could visit. Also there was Palambama 30km down the Leopards Hill Rd. Extended family units worked well in Zambia with pupils going home during school holidays wherever possible. Local political situation was currently ok but she said it was changeable. The govt had changed last year and they were trying to get them to sign the Hague Convention.
He suggested we get our sights and sounds and feelers out and mentioned the Moth Club (do we have to dress as moths??) as a good place to network. He also recommended we speak to David Thompson who runs the Lusaka Hotel. He had heard of the Vineyard Church and John Wimber. He advised that a church approach was more reliable than an NGO. There would be challenges and realities and leakages with what we were proposing to do. It was whether we could get to them and plug the hole. We said we would come to a service at the Cathedral on 15 July and he said the 8 o’clock service would be like John’s mother would have remembered it but the 10 o’clock service would be like we do it at Vineyard – 10 o’clock it is then.
Charley prayed for us and our church and our vision.
While we were with the Dean we also met a lady called Florence Monje who was in the property business and had contacts in Chipata about land and would get back to us.
Visited David Thompson at the Lusaka Hotel, who knew some of the people and families that John remembered when he was here. David invited us to a businessmans lunch club tomorrow.
We met an Ex Zambian Army Captain Kasamunda in the Hotel who said he may have contacts about land in Chipata.
Back to the hotel for a beer.
Met with General Malimba Masheke who was in the Zambian Army and went through Sandhurst with John. He was also prime minister of Zambia. Much reminiscing about army times and people including the story of when the Sgt Major at Sandhurst marched them all into the frozen lake in their best kit. People kept coming up to the General while we were sitting talking. He is a recognised and popular man. He congratulated John on his vision and said when we get to the other place its not just about how many times we kneeled down and prayed its also about what we have done. He was Chairman of the Inter-Religious & International Federation for world Peace, bringing together Christians, Bhuddists, Islam etc on key world issues. He travels round Africa, Europe and America. He also plays golf at which point John’s eyes lit up. There is now the real prospect of John getting a few holes in before we go and Chris learning how to caddy! He phoned General Kingsley Chikuli who we had been unable to contact. Kingsley is another old Zambian Army colleague of John’s and he was able to set up an appointment for us tomorrow. Malimba was happy for John to use his name to assist in any way he could and he said if we had any problems we should ring him.
Went for a walk along Cairo Road – the one the Foreign Office website said was dangerous after dark. It’s a thriving market full of street vendors. John bought a 10 dollar watch from one of them.
It gets dark here about 6pm so we got a taxi ride to a curry house. Johns watch is loosing 10 minutes in every hour which involves maths whenever he wants to know the time. Went to bed early.
Not a bad start to the visit. We have seen some interesting people and Chris has tried 3 different beers….Breakfast at 8 tomorrow although of course John might be late.