Location in Zambia
|Coordinates: 12°33′S 28°14′E / 12.550°S 28.233°E|
Mufulira ("Place of Abundance") is a town with a population of 125,336 (2007) in the Copperbelt Province of Zambia. It was established in the 1930s around the site of the Mufulira Copper Mine on its north-western edge. The town is 16 km from the border of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and is the start of the Congo Pedicle road connecting the Copperbelt to the Luapula Province, making that province Mufulira's commercial hinterland. A tarred highway to the south-west connects Mufulira to Kitwe (40 km) and Chingola (55 km), and another to the south-east connects to Ndola (60 km), the commercial and transport hub of the Copperbelt. A branch of Zambia Railways, carrying freight only, serves the mine.
The Mufulira Mine is now owned and operated by Mopani Copper Mines which employs 10,000 permanent workers and produced about 300,000 tonnes of copper bars in 2007 after the rehabilitation of the Mufulira copper smelter by SMEC South Africa (formerly Vela VKE). Production and employment levels are down from the 1969 peak when the Copperbelt made Zambia the world's 4th largest copper producer.
In Zambia, Mufulira is well known for being the home of the successful Mufulira Wanderers football team. Zambia's third President (2002–2008), Levy Mwanawasa, was born in Mufulira, as well as top African footballer, Kalusha Bwalya. Also notable are Welsh international sportsmen Robert Earnshaw (football) and Dafydd James (Rugby Union).
Notable people born in Mufulira
- Kalusha Bwalya (Zambia's top footballer and African Footballer of the Year winner, 1988)
- Samuel "Zoom" Ndhlovu (Zambia Soccer Team coach and player)
- Levy Mwanawasa (President of Zambia 2001 - 2008)
- Robert Earnshaw (footballer)
- Christopher Katongo (footballer)
- Felix Katongo (footballer)
- Dafydd James (International Rugby Union player)
- Robert John "Mutt" Lange (Record producer, songwriter, ex-husband of Shania Twain)
- David S Flinn (Rugby Union - West of Scotland)
- Patrick Kaluba Chibesa (aircraft Engineer, worked for UN - WFP in Lesotho and Sudan)
- Guy Martin: Gaian Artist
Former Residents of Mufulira
- Kenneth Kaunda (First President of Zambia 1964 - 1991. In 1948 - Was a teacher/Boarding Master of a Mine School, Assistant at a Welfare Centre for Africans. Zambia's 3rd President, Levy Mwanawasa, was born in Mufulira in that year).
- Frederick Chiluba (Second President of Zambia 1991 - 2001. Lived in Mufulira in the 1960s)
- Simon Kapwepwe (First Vice-President of Zambia. In 1948 - was a teacher and won a famous victory against the ruling party's candidate, Alexander Kamalondo)
- Mufulira 'Reggae Boys' Rugby Club
- 'Mighty' Mufulira Wanderers F.C.
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