President Sata reiterates govt’s subsidies removal

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–President Michael Sata has reiterated that the removal of fuel and maize subsidies is meant to ensure that all parts of the country get even share of national development regardless of their locality.


And Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia (EFZ) Executive Director, Pukuta Mwanza says Africa  should follow her own values and norms to fight poverty.


Meanwhile, Independent Churches of Zambia (ICOZ) Board Chairperson Reverend David Masupa has implored politicians from both the opposition and government to agree to disagree in the interest of the nation.


Government through Agriculture and Livestock Minister Bob Sichinga recently announced that cabinet has approved the removal of Maize subsidies.


The move means that the price of Mealie meal, the country’s staple food will go up.


Mr. Bob Sichinga announced in Lusaka recently that cabinet had no choice but to do away with the maize subsidies.


But this government move has been received with mixed feelings from a cross section of society.

The opposition National Restoration Party (NAREP) leader Elias Chipimo jr, for instance felt that the removal of subsidies by government is regrettable.


Mr. Chipimo says government should have avoided the removing of all subsidies in one go but could have instead staggered the reductions over a period of 6 months so that the impact is minimized.


However, President Sata reiterated that the removal of subsidies will benefit all Zambians regardless of their social status.


The President was speaking at this year’s commemoration of the 50 th  Anniversary of the African Union Interdenominational Thanksgiving Church Service at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Lusaka today.


“The Bible says I was hungry and feed me: I was thirsty and you gave me water, but Grey Zulu would ask where did I see you Lord?” President Sata jokingly told the congregants.


He paid glowing tribute to First Republican president Dr. Kenneth Kaunda, Grey Zulu and other freedom fighters for liberating Zambia.


The President said the two former leaders, Dr. Kenneth Kaunda and Grey Zulu were strong but fair when dealing with fellow Zambians in their quest to develop the country.


Earlier, Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia (EFZ) executive Director, Pukuta Mwanza said the African continent should use its own values and norms to fight poverty issues such as chronic hunger, unemployment, abject poverty and other social ills.


Rev. Mwanza urged African leaders to use the continent’s 50 years to rebuild and rebrand itself to become a stronger continent and a major contributor to the global economy through innovation and technological advancement.


He observed that most African leaders are capable producing the much needed change and transformation,  if only they are less manipulated by the outside forces.


“We pray with faith in a Great God that he will enable us to surmount the problems we face and overcome the challenges on our continent.


“Africa’s problems are not only on the need for capable leaders, but also a new style of leadership in order to move the continent forward, “he said.


“There is no reason why our countries should continue to struggle and yet we have abundant natural resource and human capital that is capable of producing phenomenal developmental outcomes,” he added.


Rev. Mwanza lamented that Africa is always treated as a silent partner in dealing with the west and this has had adverse effects on the developmental agenda of the continent.


He further lamented that imposition of unfair demands on African governments has made it difficult for the Union agenda to be fully released quickly.


The clergyman however, noted that the African union has produced some significant achievements in some areas but there remains much work to be done in order to address the numerous problems still facing the continent.


“Currently, we face the human rights agenda that is exerting undue pressure our countries and African governments as the extent to which this matter is being pushed in unacceptable in our society.


“ Our moral values and fundamental Christian beliefs should be respected because that is the bedrock of pour African society and cultural heritage”, He said.


And at the same function, Independent Churches of Zambia (ICOZ) Board Chairperson Reverend David Masupa has implored politicians from both the opposition and government to agree to disagree in the interest of the nation.


Delivering his homily entitled “ Our, Your and My Responsibility”, Reverend Masupa advised the politicians across the political divide to bury their political difference by working together to develop the county.


He implored Zambians at all levels to embrace and preach peace, unity and love  in their communities, workplaces and political parties in line with biblical teachings.

Rev. Masupa said it was time for Zambians to also embraced hard work and supplement government efforts in ensuring that the country attains sustainable development.


Cabinet ministers, deputy ministers, senior government officials and diplomats accredited to Zambia attended the service.