Reacting to the huge upward adjustment in fuel pump prices effected by the Energy Regulation Board (ERB), Kabimba expressed shock at how government, through the ERB, misled the nation by failure to keep its word that the depreciation of the kwacha would not affect the cost of fuel.
The former justice minister equally expressed frustration and dismay at the seeming incompetence and lack of co-ordination in the entire government bureaucracy.
“We were assured by the Energy Regulation Board just a week ago when the kwacha started nose diving, that the kwacha would not affect the price of fuel. The Times of Zambia, which is a government tabloid, ran a headline saying that, ‘we, the citizens, of this country should not believe in the rumours that there was an impending increase in the price of fuel. It is, therefore, shocking to the citizens that hardly a week later, there is this upward price increase in fuel. So, the question that begs the answer is, do the people in this government know what they are doing? Is there co-ordination in the PF government? Do they have consultations amongst themselves? Are these parastatals, like ERB, being properly supervised by the superintending ministries?” Kabimba wondered.
He said the latest increment in fuel prices was a true reflection of incompetence in the PF government.
“What you have seen here in the fuel thing is what has caused us problems. There is clearly no co-ordination amongst government ministries and government agencies in terms of running the affairs of this country and hence the problems in which we are today. So, this has everything to do with whether or not we have competent people in government. And we in the Rainbow party think that this is a reflection of the incompetence in the PF government because this did not come from the opposition, it was not prompted by anybody, [but] it was them that gave us the assurance through ERB that we should not worry, we should go to sleep, and that the depreciation of the kwacha will not impact on the price of fuel,” recalled Kabimba.
“So, we want an apology from them. The Zambian people deserve an apology in view of this increment that the government lied to us through ERB; that is what I would demand from government! And just to reinforce the argument that this is not the first time it happened over the Black Mountain again. The guys must get serious with running a country. This is a country of lives of human beings [and] so we must be serious with these matters. What else can they do? Because they can’t reduce the price and what do you do when you have told lies? Surely, you apologize. That is the best you can do. The best that a human being of integrity and honesty can do; when they have wronged you; when they have told you a lie; when they have misled you; is to apologize and say ‘sorry we misled the nation’.”