SOLWEZI, ZAMBIA – Discipline and dedication to duty are key to achieving your goals life, says Francis Kiyana, senior roads and earthworks supervisor in the Roads Department at FQM’s Kansanshi Mine.
The father of six begun his career as a bricklayer after acquiring a Craft Certificate at Kabwe Trades Training Institute, and has worked his way up to become a pivotal player in the company’s operations.
“I started my school in Chingola district at Muchinchi primary school. Later on, I came to Ka’ngwena, which is now Mushindamo District. After qualifying to grade eight, I came to Solwezi Technical Secondary School in 1994.
From there I went to do my Craft Certificate at Kabwe Trades Training Institute as a Brick layer and then I joined Minestone construction, which built houses and other infrastructure. I later joined a road construction company, before going to do a course in Road Maintenance and Highways with Robex construction in South Africa,” he said.
“From the word go I never saw myself working in the roads sector, because most people look at the work we do as what they call dirty jobs, and most of the young people in Zambia want white-collar jobs. But I believe roads play a vital role in changing the face of our communities and the country at large. And I felt that I could play my role in making a difference by working in the road sector,” said Mr Kiyana.
Kiyana is of the firm belief that good road infrastructure is a catalyst for increasing economic activities in the country and attracting foreign direct investment.
“I have spent most of my time in the construction industry across the country constructing roads, which was from 2001 to 2012 when I came to join First Quantum Minerals under the roads department at Kansanshi. However, after only working for about a month, I was transferred to Kalumbila Minerals, which was in the initial stages to start some construction works there, before being sent back to Kansanshi,” he said.
High density transport infrastructure and highly-connected networks are associated with high levels of development, he explained.
“One of the reasons I enjoy working for a company like FQM is because it has recognised the transport sector as an important component of the economy and a common tool used for development, with a clear relationship between the quantity and quality of transport infrastructure and the level of economic development,” he said.
Mr Kiyana added that challenges will always be there, but that it takes discipline and dedication to duty to achieve goals in life.
“There are a lot of temptations in the roads sector such as selling of company fuel and hiring out of equipment for private jobs. However, for you to succeed in this industry, you need to be a disciplined person; to be focused. And you need to be a person who truly fears the Lord. If you don’t have those principles, it will be very difficult for you to work,” he said.
This year will mark eight years with FQM for Mr Kiyana. But time has not slowed him down or reduced his passion for the firm and his job: “In the next three to four years, with the experience that I have acquired over the years and the responsibilities that I have at the moment, I hope to move up to the position of superintendent in the mine,” he concluded.