ACTION Aid Zambia (AAZ) has commended Governement and the Creditors Committee for strides made towards debt restructuring in the country.
AAZ Country Director Nalucha Ziba says the country’s debt saga has been an issue for several years and the strides being taken are commendable.
“Action Aid Zambia (AAZ) would like to commend the Zambian Government and the Creditors’ Committee of Zambia, chaired by China, for their important and unprecedented strides towards debt restructuring and ultimate cancellation. Zambia’s debt saga has been an issue of debate for several years now – and the urgency for resolving this has been escalated by the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said.
She said over the past decade, the government had embarked on ambitious infrastructure development that fueled the need for domestic and external financing.
“The global economic fallout following Covid and the war in Ukraine made government debt unsustainable, rising as it did from 23.8 percent of GDP in 2014 to 141.3 percent of GDP by 2020 .This triggered Zambia’s debt default and led to the present plans to restructure the debt.
Given our diverse debt portfolio, AAZ recognizes the complex nature of these negotiations, particularly with the private creditors. Building on the current position and the provision of financing assurances, the Government must leverage the support of the Creditors’ Committee to ensure the agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is beneficial to the Zambian people,” she said.
She said currently, government of has made significant pronouncements for and commitments to all sectors of the economy
“Social sectors, such as education and health, have already seen numerous changes, such as the introduction of free education and the recruitment of teachers and health workers. However, to develop and sustain service delivery going forward, there will be a need for continuous investment in the civil service. This will require bold action to increase tax revenues through progressive and gender-responsive tax reforms,” she said.
She also advised however, that government should resist any pressure for public sector wage bill cuts or freezes that would compromise on service delivery, particularly in the health and education sectors.
“The recent recruitment of 30,496 teachers has been welcome, but with over 100,000 applicants and continuing shortages in some areas, the exercise revealed the need for more consistent and regular recruitment .Particularly in light of the large influx of learners since the introduction of free education in January 2022. There are clear alternatives, not least through taking action to increase Zambia’s tax to GDP ratios so that increased spending can be sustainably financed,” she said.
(Mwebantu, Tuesday, August 2nd, 2022)
Fully Zambian-owned Betting company “Betta1” officially launched
The first fully Zambian-owned betting company Betta1, was yesterday morning launched in Lusaka at Sarovar Hotel. Betta1’s country manager, Mr. Ray Phiri said in his briefing that Betta1 has been brought to the Zambian people for their enjoyment, money-making, and leisure. He further on went to distinguish how unique the Betta1 platform is from other betting platforms already operating in the country. He said that Betta1 has over 30 sports events, including Formula 1 racing, Ice Hockey, Tennis, Football, and many more.
Mr. Phiri went on to talk about the various games on the platform, from the live clubhouse section with mathematical games that require one to think, to virtual games, slot games, and rare games like Aviator and Rocketman that has recorded a lot of wins from the Zambian people already betting on the platform.
Mr. Phiri emphasized the highest winning bonus of 600% that Betta1 has brought to the Zambian people, explaining why Betta1 decided on that approach; by stating that Betta1’s goal is to bring the most effective, most entertaining, and most profitable solutions to the Zambian people.
Mr. Phiri said that the entire Betta1 interface was created with the Zambian people in mind, and that’s what makes Betta1 a proudly owned Zambian betting company. He concluded by thanking the Zambian government, The Ministry of Finance, and The President of the Republic of Zambia Mr. Hichilema Hakainde for the good policies they have put in place that allow for economic stability and attract investors both locally and internationally, which adds to the country’s economic development.
The other keynote speaker was Betta1’s CEO Mr. Angad Chhabra, who started off by congratulating the Betta1 team and the Zambian people at large for producing what the people are calling the cream de la cream, as well as being the only betting company with its origin from Zambia. Mr. Chhabra praised Zambia’s peaceful environment, and the economic system in place, which makes Zambia a grand destination for investment in Africa.
He further on went to say that the Zambian people can only expect excellence and good service delivery going forward, and the company’s focus is providing jobs for the Zambian youth who are disfranchised and excluded from leadership opportunities. Mr. Chhabra concluded by appreciating all partners and clients who have come on board to partner with Betta1 and welcomes every Zambian over the age of 18 to start betting on the Betta1 platform for an enjoyable, profitable, and lasting betting experience.
Also speaking was Zambian renowned musician Moses Wesley Chibambo, popularly known as Dandy Krazy, who expressed his happiness and excitement to associate with a Zambian-owned betting company that has its core values centered on providing job opportunities for the Zambian youth.
Dandy Krazy went on to say that Betta1 is something extraordinary and exclusively created for the Zambian people to benefit, as people can bet from as low as K1, and stand a chance to win up to a 600% win bonus, which is the highest in the country proudly brought to the Zambian people by a Zambian owned betting company. He further went on to encourage Zambians to register at www.betta1.com and take advantage of the current football season that has just started. He concluded by saying Zambians should stand and bet on Zambian grounds by a fully Zambian-owned betting company.
Bus operators who will not reduce bus fares as guided by RTSA risk having their Road Service Licenses revoked, Govt warns
GOVERNMENT has warned that Bus operators that will not reduce bus fares as announced by the Road Traffic Safety Agency ( RTSA) after a reduction in the fuel pump price risk having their Road Service Licenses (RSL) revoked.
The Ministry of Transport and Logistics has since advised members of the public to report bus operators that violate the directive through the RTSA hotline on 0955 983983 or 0965 429499 on WhatsApp for action.
Ministry of Transport and Logistics Permanent Secretary Fredrick Mwalusaka said Bus operators are advised to effect the revised bus fares.
“On August 2nd last week RTSA and the bus operators held a consultative meeting to consider the proposed reduction in bus fares following the downward adjustment in fuel pump price announced by the Energy Regulation Board (ERB) for the month of August 2022.
The meeting was also attended by the Commuters Right Association of Zambia (CRAZ), Zambia Consumer Association (ZACA), Public Passenger Transport Drivers Association of Zambia (PPTDAZ) and the Bus and Taxi Owners Association of Zambia (BTOAZ),” he said.
Mr Mwalusaka said BTOAZ brought a proposed reduction in bus fares of K1.00 on local routes and five per cent on intercity routes.
He said that they informed the Meeting that the proposal was based on their model of calculating bus and taxi fares.
“However, this proposal did not reflect the average reduction in fuel price as BTOAZ did not follow the agreed bus fare model that is normally used by RTSA.It should be noted that RTSA as a regulatory institution in the road transport sector has the obligation to regulate the passenger public transporters to protect the interest of the public while safeguarding the operations of the public transport sector in the country. Section 108 of the Road Traffic Act. Number 11 of 2002 provides that, a bus operator should seek approval from RTSA for any variation in bus fares,”
“To this effect, all bus operators are guided to effect the revised bus fares as announced by RTSA, following the decrease in fuel pump price announced by ERB. The public should be aware that the transport sector is liberalized and therefore each operator should have their own rate. However, in order to protect the public from exploitation, Government and RTSA put together a mechanism that would be more consultative and would look at various aspects of pricing in the transportation of passengers. This mechanism should not be misconstrued to be a total abolishment of all forms of regulation and control. It should enable the harnessing of a competitive and effective business environment that protects the interest of the public. In this regard, Government has a duty to put in place control measures in the passenger public transport system,” he said.
Mr Mwalusaka added therefore, that bus operators who will not implement the new bus fare reduction, risk having RSL being revoked or suspended for violating the terms and conditions under which the licence was granted.
“From the foregoing, RTSA is directed to enforce the provisions of the Road Traffic Act to bring sanity in the operations of the transport system in the Country. Members of the general public are urged to report bus operators violating the provisions of the law,” he said.
(Mwebantu, Tuesday, August 8th, 2022)
Unifi Zambia hosts 800 Kasama residents during its first family fun day
Unifi, one of Zambia’s top personal loans companies, hosted their first-ever Family Fun Day which was held at the Kasama Boys School on the 30th July in Kasama. The event encouraged community involvement in line with Unifi’s mantra of “making life easy”. The Family Fun Day allowed a break from the grind of daily life and substituted for spending quality time with loved ones. The Unifi Family Fun Day additionally offered social and economic opportunities for local vendors.
Led by their Chief Operating Officer, Lilian Bwalya and the Kasama District Commissioner Elizabeth Goma, the team steered a fun and entertaining day that also included cleaning and painting the Kasama Boys school toilets, as well as clearing the school grounds. This effort was made for the benefit of the over 1,451 pupils currently registered at the school.
Speaking on behalf of the Kasama District Commissioner, Ms. Elizabeth Goma, commended Unifi for the great time and effort that was put into ensuring the event was a success and for enabling access to finance for many residents in the area.
As a company that operates close to the communities where it has a presence, Unifi believes that the Family Fun Day is one way to give back and thank clients for their support.
“In order for businesses to thrive, the community must thrive, too. Now, more than ever, our local communities need assistance, in many circumstances,” said Ms. Bwalya. “It is a pleasure for us to give back to the communities we serve.”
Unifi has been providing financial services since 2006 with 34 branches in Zambia. Operated on the value of simplicity, Unifi Zambia has purposed to redefining personal credit with innovations that will make life easy for 1 million clients by 2025.
Formally employed persons in the government and private sectors can apply for our loans. We believe credit should help people move forward and be there for them when they need it most. That’s why our loans are quick and simple to apply for, pay out fast and offer flexible repayment terms. These are some of the ways we’re redefining credit and making life easy! Visit https://unifi.credit/zm/