NAREP STATEMENT ON THE REMOVAL OF SUBSIDY ON MAIZE
Where are we headed as a country? First it was removal of fuel
subsidy, now it’s the maize subsidy and soon ZESCO tariffs will be
As NAREP we have noted with deep concern the continuous negative
developments in our nation. Every day we wake up to the news of
increases in prices of essential commodities due to government’s
decision to stop subsidising its own citizens. We are deeply saddened
that government has continued to make decisions without any regard on
the impact these decisions will have on the people of this country.
These changes may be necessary but the rate at which they are being
implemented is simply unbearable for the majority of Zambians.
We cannot understand why the PF administration has decided to inflict
more suffering on its citizens who are already struggling to make ends
meet. It is worrying to see a government that is willing to donate
2million litres of fuel to another country yet refuse to better manage
the removal of subsidies in order to cushion the impact on its own
citizens. It is worrying to have a government which is ready to spend
colossal sums of money on by-elections and yet refuses to better
manage the subsidy on the staple food for its citizens. Is this what
they meant by pro-poor government? Is this what they meant when they
spoke about putting more money in people’s pockets? The PF
administration claims that it is spending too much on subsidizing
citizens yet itis prepared to spend colossal amounts on “engineered”
by-elections and a bloated cabinet. They are ready to increase
salaries for ministers, and subsidise their personal fuel allocations
yet they refuse to be concerned about the poor woman in Kanyama
compound who cannot make ends meet.
Maize is a staple food in this nation and government must never play
games with this commodity because doing so means playing with people’s
lives. The PF administration must hasten to remember that it was voted
in power by the Zambian people on grounds that it would change things
for the better. It is clear today that the Zambian people were
cheated. We should not remain mute whilst the people we put in power
destroy this nation.
NAREP will not stand by and watch the government inflict misery and
suffering on the people of Zambia. We are aware that foreign investors
are being subsidised and given tax concessions whilst our people pay
high taxes on their small businesses.
Instead of increasing ZESCO tariffs the government must reduce the
size of cabinet and stop unnecessary “engineered”by-elections. We
advise the government to concentrate on policies that will better the
lives of the Zambian people and not bow down to pressure from
international institutions which have no heart for the poor. Even a
good policy can cause destruction if not properly implemented.
Government must engage the people and help them understand and
transform before making decisions that have a negative impact on their
wellbeing.Zambia is a democracy and Government should not use
intimidation to implement change.
Rev. Jevan Kamanga