By SILUMESI MALUMO
THE reason Zambians are feeling the pinch of the high cost of living is because Government has given the mines a tax holiday, Patriot for Economic Progress president Sean Tembo has said.
Mr Tembo said Zambians are not benefiting from high copper prices because of such wrong decisions.
“The new dawn administration gave mining houses this de facto tax holiday because these mines have been funding the UPND campaigns since time in memorial, so they are now paying pack.
However, he said, this is being done at the detriment of Zambians citizens.
“With the high copper prices being at a record high, we were supposed to be recording a huge budget surplus right now, our foreign reserves at BOZ were supposed to be growing exponentially, our foreign debts which the current government inherited were supposed to be liquidated at a fast pace, but none of that is happening,” Mr Tembo said.
He said “They are even failing to hire 11,000 medical personnel and 30,000 teachers which they promised.”
He further said contractors have not been paid for months resulting in huge loss of employment.
“Hospitals have no medicine and the cost of living is unbearable. These are problems which are supposed to be there when copper prices are at rock bottom not when they are record high,” he said.
Mr Tembo said Zambians of all creed, regions, provinces and tribes need to accept that the man whom they entrusted with the job of running the affairs of this nation does not have nation interest at heart.
Mr Tembo said Mr Hichilema has put his personal interests and the interests of UPND above the interests of the nation.
Mr Tembo said “Instead of collecting the tax that is due to the nation from the mining sector while copper prices are at an all time high, they would rather give them a de facto tax holiday so as to pay back the debt that the party has accumulated over the years while in opposition from the mines.”
Mr Tembo accused the UPND of sabotaging the country in favour of foreign and corporate interests, all at the expense of the common Zambian.
He said instead of bringing hope and help to people as promised during campaigns, all UPND was offering Zambians are shallow excuses which become more incoherent by the day.