FORMER Finance Minister Dr Bwalya Ng’andu has urged Zambians to rely on the PF government for a stronger economy.
In an interview, Dr Ng’andu said unlike the opposition parties, PF had a clear plan on where it wanted to take the country’s economy.
“Our message in the past months as we campaigned point to the accomplishments and achievements of PF in the last seven years. Besides that, we have been talking about where we want to take this economy, contrast that with our friends in the opposition. Our friends have always been saying negative messages. It is easy to do that but you don’t win by pointing at the weaknesses of one another, you win by laying out clearly what your programme will be so that people can have confidence in where you are taking the country going forward. That has not come out from our friends in the opposition. We know what we are doing. You can trust this government,” Dr Ng’andu said.
“It has shown you that it can transform infrastructure. But now the focus is on transforming other sectors of the economy so that we can become a strong economy. You can rely on us, on our experience and also the fact that there is commitment to drive this country forward. So we have a very clear and specific plan for each sector. We are focused, we know what we want to do. The President has a very clear agenda of where he wants this economy to go in the next five years so that we can have a strong economy which creates jobs for our people, which also depends on the capacity of our people.”
Dr Ng’andu said PF was also focused on increasing productivity in the agriculture sector.
“We have laid out our economic recovery programme, it is a very clear direction of where we want to take the Zambian economy to. We are focused on restoring the growth of the economy. There are proposals that we are making that we will drive in the long and short term. In agriculture, manufacturing and mining. In agriculture, our specific focus is on increasing productivity. In the next few years, our focus will be on enhancing extension service delivery so that the agriculture sector becomes more productive. You will be able to see resources shifted to key sectors, you will be able to see us reviving and giving more focus to the farm blocks and agriculture packs. We want to see wood processing, we want to see a fertilizer plant by the end of this year,” he said.
Meanwhile, Dr Ng’andu said the US$1.3 billion received from the International Monetary Fund to boost foreign reserves was a measure of confidence in the country.
“It is a measure of confidence but the whole framework of the agreement we have been working on for the last three months or so. It recognizes the fact that a number of countries have had a difficult situation on account of the Covid pandemic. So it is a welcome addition to our reserve position and should be able to help us in dealing with the pandemic,” said Dr Ng’andu.