By Staff Writer
Fight Inequality Alliance (FIA) Zambia National Coordinator Daisy Mwilima has demanded for the full disclosure of the IMF programme to give citizens an opportunity to scrutinize it.
Ms Mwilima, who was part of the Civil Society Organization delegation that met with the IMF deputy managing Director, Ms Antoinette Monsio Sayeh on Wednesday during her visit to Zambia cautioned that the country could not tolerate a situation where anti poor austerity measures were being imposed, with harsh and damaging impacts on people’s lives and livelihoods.
She revealed that FIA has expressed concern about how the government has negotiated the IMF programme.
Ms Mwilima said FIA demands for government to conduct an in-depth assessment of other options beyond the IMF programme, but so far this demand has been ignored.
“Our government says we are pursuing an IMF programme, and economic reforms will have to be taken. But we need to know as citizens what exactly these economic reforms are because we are the ones that will be paying back the loan financially and it is us who will feel the pain of austerity” she stated.
“We need a reversal of the current priorities – so that multinational corporations are no longer given tax breaks and citizens are pushed beyond breaking point with the rising cost of living. The poor cannot afford the austerity the IMF and the government is agreeing to on their behalf,” she said.
She emphasized that her organization demands that Government discloses in full the details of this IMF programme, allow parliamentary oversight and scrutiny and guarantee that there will be no austerity measures.