Chief Madzimawe of the Ngoni people in
eastern province has called on government to involve traditional
leaders in explaining the removal of subsidies on fuel and maize.
Chief Madzimawe said traditional leaders should be asked to assist in
explaining the long term benefits of the removal of subsidies on maize
and fuel to their subjects.
He was speaking when eastern province permanent secretary, Bert
Mushala, paid a courtesy call on him at his palace in Chipata
The traditional leader noted that people in rural areas were not clear
about government’s decision to remove the subsidies on fuel and maize
because they were receiving half baked information.
He said the villagers who were going to benefit more from the
resources after the removal of subsidies, were being confused by
disgruntled politicians who did not have the heart for people
especially those in rural areas.
“ These political leaders should have the heart for the country first
by coming up with policies that will benefit all Zambians like what
this government has done,’’ Chief Madzimawe said.
He said the office of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs in the district
was not being utilized fully, adding that, officers in the department
should work closely with chiefs in helping to explain government
policies that will benefit the majority of Zambians.
Chief Madzimawe said some farmers had wrong misconceptions that
government had completely removed the subsidy on agricultural inputs
when it was not the case.
“What it means is that farmers will pay 50 percent and government will
also pay 50 percent on the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP). I
think this is what I know because it is one way of making farmers
start thinking about standing on their own,’’ he said.
The traditional leader also urged government to provide transport to
the Department of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs so that the officers
can address issues affecting chiefs and their subjects in the district.
And Eastern Province Permanent Secretary, Bert Mushala, said
government offices were open to traditional leaders and urged them to
call when they needed help.
Mr. Mushala noted that government and traditional leaders had one
common goal of looking after the welfare of their people.