Zambia: 2013 Budget Well-Meaning, Says Chipimo

THE National Restoration Party (NAREP) has said the 2013 national Budget announced last week is a well-meaning document which can help address challenges in Zambia if well-implemented.

NAREP president Elias Chipimo said in an interview in Lusaka yesterday that the Patriotic Front (PF) Government should ensure that the projects highlighted in the Budget were implemented timely if the challenges that Zambia was facing were to be addressed.

Mr Chipimo cited the allocation of funds to the ‘Link Zambia 8000’ project and the e-voucher system in the agricultural sector as some of the good projects which if implemented would help resolve most problems that the country was facing.

He said the agricultural sector needed appropriate policies as it had the potential to create more jobs if properly handled.

The opposition leader said the proposal to create one million jobs in five years was a major step towards tackling high unemployment levels.

Mr Chipimo, however, said the issue of “heavily” taxing the 500,000 people in the formal employment had not been addressed.

Meanwhile, House of Chiefs deputy chairperson Chief Chikanta has described the 2013 Budget as good because it emphasised poverty reduction and job creation.

He said the move to allocate substantial funds to the agricultural sector and infrastructure development was a positive one as the two sectors were potential areas for economic development.

The chief was hopeful the PF Government would live up to the pledges as announced in the K32.3 trillion Budget.

Meanwhile, Stanslous Ngosa reports that Southern Resource Watch (SARW) Zambia is pleased with Government increased allocation to the environmental protection in the 2013 national Budget.

SARW Zambia campaigns officer Edward Lange said at the ongoing media training course on ‘Strengthening Capacity of Southern Africa Journalists’ that the organisation was happy with the political will shown towards environmental protection.

Government has increased the budgetary allocation towards environmental protects to K74 billion from the K31 billion.

SARW operated in Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Mr Lange, however, said there was need to invest in capacity enhancement in Zambia Environmental Management Agency (ZEMA) and Government institution mandated to take care of the environment.

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Zambia: 2013 Budget Well-Meaning, Says Chipimo