AMB. EMMANUEL MWAMBA TO DELIVER MEMORANDUM OF DEMAND AGAINST THE IMF
He wrote …..
I’ve noted a programme at the University of Zambia.
I am rushing to Lusaka, hoping to deliver my Memorandum of Demand to IMF Managing Director and Executive Chairperson of the International Monetary Fund, Ms. Kristalina Georgieva.
We are demanding an apology from the IMF for promoting adverse economic programmes that leave the poor more vulnerable, increases unemployment and cuts government support to the general population.
We are also demanding that the IMF boss apologises for the Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) implemented in the late 1980s and 1990s that promoted privatization and liberalism that saw Zambia and other African countries de-industrialised, saw an increase in corporate and large scale corruption, saw reduced spending on health and education, and saw increase in poverty, unemployment, inequalities and encouraged dependence on foreign loans and aid at the expense of domestic resource mobilization.
We also recognise that since the IMF signed with Zambia the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) that should see Zambia obtain a $1.3billion loan bail-out package, this is tied to a Creditors Committee facilitated by the IMF to help resolve Zambia’s external debt.
Under the G20 Debt Service Suspension Initiative (DSSI) Zambia was among 48 countries that suspended debt service obligations.
Since November 2020, Zambia has not paid any debt service and this has given the country temporary respite to direct resources to social and economic programmes.
However the Creditors Committee must complete its work to restructure the debt or forgive the debt for the IMF programme to be effective. We will appeal to the Managing Director to help expedite this work.
We have expressed concern that the old SAP and the new IMF programmes are NOT significantly different as they call for removal of subsidies, increase in taxes and significant cut to public spending and reduction in investment in infrastructure and related projects.
These programmes remain harmful to the poor and vulnerable and regress the country’s ambitions to foster development.
We also recognise that our own leaders cannot escape blame as they have been active agents in implementing these harmful programmes, and in many cases, to the exclusion Parliament.
The Agreements remain secret and only convenient details are released.
This must stop.