The opposition UPND has written to absent president Michael Sata to reconsider his unilateral decision to remove fuel and maize subsidies as well as his decision to reduce fertilizer subsidies.
In a letter dated 21st May 2013, addressed to president Sata and signed by UPND president Hakainde Hichilema, the party argues that with the unprecedented rise in the cost of living for the Zambian people that has occurred during the last twenty months of the PF economic management and other national affairs, this decision will sentence more of the Zambian people to a lifetime of poverty.
“It must not be forgotten that when you took office in September, 2011, a bag of 25 KG breakfast meal was selling at KR36 and the US dollar was at KR4.6. Today, after your policies have been implemented, the price of the same bag is selling at over KR65 and US dollar rate is at K5.45,” the letter reads.
Mr. Hichilema’s letter further argues that it was not morally right for president Sata to ask ordinary Zambians to sacrifice when he (Sata) and his cabinet are not doing the same.
“It is public knowledge that you increased your salary and allowances by 100%, your retirement house is being built even before you retire, the first lady has an unconstitutional K1.5 billion tax payers money to spend without government supervision and further your ministers’ subsistence allowances was recently increased by 100%. Morality demands that you deal with the above before you ask the suffering messes to do the same,” reads the UPND letter that was delivered to State House.
The UPND letter also demanded that Mr. Sata reduces his bloated government that he has created because there is no need to have a combined number of 72 ministers and deputies in a country like ours. The letter also demands that Mr. Sata gives the country a break from the current permanent state of unnecessary by-elections which are too costly and are a drain of meager resources of our country.
It is so far not clear how Mr. Sata will respond to the letter because in the past, the reaction has been that of insults and ridicule to anyone who gives him such advise.