The Zambia Council for Social Development (ZCSD) has requested president Michael Sata to use his presidential prerogative of mercy to pardon more than Six million “prisoners of Extreme Poverty” as part of Golden Jubilee Independence celebrations.
ZSCD executive Secretary Lewis Mwape says as Sata exercises the Golden Jubilee presidential prerogative of mercy, he must pay particular attention to and consider liberating the highly trapped female headed households that experience even higher poverty levels and as such are incarcerated in a “maximum poverty prison”.
Mwape said that the people in prisons of poverty accounts for 42.3 percent of Zambian population.
‘Whilst those official prisoners (murderers, rapists, goat thieves) afford three meals per day, those imprisoned in prisons of Extreme Poverty have had no right to food, education, health, shelter and other basic rights for a long time now,’ Mwape complained.
Speaking of prisoners of poverty, Mwape said It is sad to note that of these prisoners, more than four million prisoners are in the Rural Areas, accounting for 57.7 percent of those living in ‘prisons extreme poverty’.
Mwape requested Sata to consider taking the following measures as part of Zambia’s 50th flag independence celebrations:
1) Reinstate all those subsidies that have a great bearing to increase the cost of living of the people especially the poor whom the PF government purports to serve.
2) Implement the infrastructure development projects incrementally by concentrating on those infrastructures that have been identified as main drivers of extreme poverty.
3) Make a hard decision of course against his will to give the people of Zambia an acceptable constitution, which will play the sounds of the Zambian people. In this regard, it is important that the Final Draft Constitution is transparently released to the Zambian people immediately. This will inspire majority of the people of Zambia and it will build confidence in the PF leadership.
4) Never to ever think about implementing the wage and employment freeze, as this will affect negatively service delivery in key sectors such as education, health, agriculture and security.
5) Reduce and Regulate the Debt contraction. It will be important for the PF government to focus on other sources of revenues. The reduction of cabinet can be done without any apology. It does not make sense to freeze employment while opportunities are only open for politicians in the civil Service.