By Fredrick Mwansa
Thu 19 Apr. 2012, 12:59 CAT
PATRIOTIC Front Itezhi-tezhi district political secretary Gift Chilombo has urged the government to sensitise rural masses on the rebasing of the Zambian currency. And Itezhi-tezhi Kaanzwa ward councillor Michael Hamasuki says most rural communities are not aware of the rebasing of the kwacha.
In an interview, Chilombo said that since the announcement of the government's intention to rebase the kwacha, there had been no sensitisation in rural areas to make people understand what it was all about.
"In rural areas especially here in Itezhi-tezhi the silence on rebasing of the kwacha is too loud and yet we only have a month in between before the planned introduction of the re- based currency," he said.
He said that traders were likely to face problems from rural people when the new currency is introduced without sensitisation.
"Small- scale farmers in most parts of Itezhi-tezhi literally do not understand what rebasing of the currency means and this will give us businessmen problems," he said.
He said that most people in rural areas were keeping a lot of money from the produce they sold to the Food Reserve Agency.
And Hamasuki urged the Bank of Zambia to embark on sensitisation of the rural masses over rebasing of the kwacha to avoid confusion when the new currency is introduced.
"We have a community radio station here in Itezhi-tezhi but I have never heard any messages to educate people on what re-basing of the kwacha means," he said.
"Even us councillors do not understand fully what rebasing means. This is serious because it means we cannot also teach our subjects on the matter because we are blank. Moreover, not very councillor has reached that level to understand such economic issues," Hamasuki said.
He further said that the government should also consider various modes of sensitisation applicable to most rural areas where television, radio and newspapers were not accessible.