Debt and development advocacy group, the Zimbabwe Coalition on Debt and Development (ZIMCODD) has attributed the worsening plight of ordinary citizens to the surging inflation owing to deepening socio-economic crisis and external factors.
In a statement, ZIMCODD said the most affected are those earning their salaries in local currency which continues to be eroded by inflation and the majority failing to access basic services.
“The situation for most people earning in the local currency (ZWL) is that their weekly or monthly earnings have become worthless due to runaway inflation, making their day-to day lives harder by the day. The plight of the poor continues to worsen with majority failing to access the basic services for instance education, healthcare and housing. There has been an increase in school dropouts because of poverty and many lives lost due to inadequate health facilities, equipment, and medication,” said ZIMCODD.
The lobby group called on the Government to among other issues urgently address workers’ wages to restore confidence and competence in the public sector.
“The government must urgently address the wage erosion issue being experienced by workers to restore confidence and efficiency in the public service sector. Government should provide social safety nets to cushion vulnerable groups including people with disability, the elderly, children and women. Use of Special Drawing Rights funds to support citizen’s livelihoods.
“Strengthening institutions such as ZACC, Parliament to reduce corruption and illicit financials flows. Corruption and IFF’s reduce the government’s resource capacity to react to inflation and other global socioeconomic challenges. Strengthening institutions will ensure that government is able to direct available resources to meaningful purposes such as providing social protection for vulnerable groups that are most affected by the high inflation.
“Government should foster fiscal discipline to reduce borrowing pressure and strengthen domestic resource mobilization. In effect, government should cultivate a culture of responsible & sustainable spending. That is, spending within its set budgets. This entails scrapping of quasi-fiscal activities being done by the RBZ. Government should do away with ‘command economics’ where they are a major player in the market,” said the lobby group
The economy, ZIMCODD said should be a private sector led economy and “there should be market driven exchange rate management and an increase in bidding transparency on the auction market. A strong currency position will reduce price distortions and hence inflation.”