Green Party president Peter Sinkamba has charged that if PF does not stop the Bank of Zambia – BoZ from implementing the policy to further reduce the limits on cheque and electronic transfer to K25,000 and K75,000 respectively then the economy will suffer terribly and that there is an anticipated increase in armed robberies because people will be carrying huge sums of money. Direct debits have been reduced to K500,000 with effect from 5th July 2017.
In a media statement, Sinkamba says that if implemented the policy will negatively affect farmers, mining suppliers and contractors as well as government suppliers and contractors because contracts value for farmers, mines and government contractors and suppliers usually by far extend the revised limits.
The opposition leader has said that the revised limits is a deliberate measure by BoZ and government to fortify indebtedness in farming, mining and infrastructure development sectors, all of which are key players in the economy.
“The measure will actually legitimise government and corporate indebtedness. Government, FRA, mining and construction companies will now have a ‘legitimate’ not to make full payments to suppliers and contractors in time. Ultimately the economy will significantly suffer”, reads the statement accessed by the Watchdog.
He further says that the measure will increase the cost of doing business because instead of doing business from the comfort of an office or home, the account holder will now be forced to go to banks to use withdrawal slips and deliver instruction letters.
Sinkala sums up that the awkward and retrogressive move is likely to increase armed robberies because instead of paper and electronic economy, account holders and payees will be forced to carry huge sums of cash. This was in reaction to the Bank of Zambia statement of reduced item value policy with effect from 5th July 2017.