Malawi Economic Justice Network (MEJN) has proposed to government the removal of levies on fuel in order to rescue ordinary Malawians who live on less than a dollar per day.
Dalitso Kubalasa, MEJN’s executive director made the suggestion at the second pre-budget consultation meeting organized by the embattled finance minister Hon Dr. Ken Lipenga, MP in the capital Lilongwe on Wednesday May 16 2012.
“As MEJN, we are asking government to rescue ordinary Malawians from the side effects of Kwacha devaluation,” urged Kubalasa; adding that devaluation of Kwacha will make scores of Malawian to remain poor as they will not afford to buy essential services and commodities as they are likely to go up.
In response, Lipenga assured the stakeholders at the meeting that the country’s economy is recovering and that he is optimistic that prices of food stuffs and other basic commodities will not go up despite the devaluation. He, however, promised that government will remove taxes that were introduced in the infamous zero deficit budget. He said currently his ministry is strategizing to remove taxes with direct effect to Malawians.
Matters of transparency and accountability in the management of public funds, adjustment of electricity tariffs by the utility company, ESCOM, and intermittent water supply in the cities dominated the discussions at the meeting.
The budget session of Parliament will be opened by Her Excellency President Mrs Joyce on Friday May 18 2012.