Thursday, November 08, 2007

LETTERS - Corruption, Electrical bills

Shakafuswa's comment on tax
By James Chiwala
Thursday November 08, 2007 [03:00]

Finance deputy minister Jonas Shakafuswa’s statement (Post Wednesday, November 07, 2007) that Zambians should not complain about high taxes shows how heartless our government leaders are towards ordinary citizens. Such comments can only come from a person who does not feel for others.

It is a known fact that most politicians do not have the interest of people at heart. They rush into politics to fatten themselves at the expense of the suffering masses. Why shouldn’t people complain about the high taxation policy the MMD government has imposed on them and yet the same government has given windfall rebates to the mines and other foreign investors who are busy externalising profits at the expense of us Zambians?

We do not need to remind our arrogant ministers that the taxes we are paying are very high. Ministers should not even have the audacity of challenging the citizens to stop complaining. The cost of living in this country is quite unbearable, to say the least. It is no wonder that most of the professionals have migrated to other countries in search of greener pastures.

The duty of every government is to provide basic social services, develop infrastructure such as roads, schools, hospitals to mention a few. This is what we want to hear as some of the achievements the government has scored arising from the taxes we are paying. Alas, what we see are the most expensive vehicles being bought, huge salaries and allowances for our government leaders at the expense of us, the taxpayers! It is sad that the government is throwing out submissions even before the budget is finalised.

What was the point of inviting Zambians to present their input into the 2008 budget when the government cannot consider them?

I agree with many progressive Zambians who are proposing that the government broaden the tax base and reduce PAYE and other taxes on the poverty-stricken citizens.

I believe we have technocrats in government who can implement these changes to our taxation policy. We have suffered enough.

Govt's silence on CEC saga
Thursday November 08, 2007 [03:00]

I wish to comment on the government's silence on the Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC) saga.

As Zesco and its board are meeting on the Copperbelt to discuss the increment of electricity tariffs, I write to demand a full government explanation on CEC saga.

It is now over a month since CEC saga was revealed by The Post but to date, the government is still mute. I am appealing to the relevant authorities not to increase electricity tariffs until the CEC issue is resolved as it was learnt that it is only benefiting a few selfish individuals.

It has been mentioned time and again that what is happening today should serve as a lesson for President Mwanawasa and his officials as far as corruption is concerned.

All Zambians deserve a fair deal from Zesco. Zesco belongs to all people and should benefit us equally, hence my appeal to relevant authorities to carefully look into this matter.
Concerned citizen



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