Bingu Remains Adamant on ZDB
The decision to adopt a Zero Deficit Budget (ZDB) in the 2011/12 fiscal year does not mean that Malawi no longer needs donor support but we must not always kneel down before them, President Bingu wa Mutharika has said.
The Malawi president was speaking Saturday when he opened the new Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) office complex – Msonkho House in Blantyre.
“Adopting zero deficit budget is not rejection of donor support but what we don’t want is begging,” said the Malawi President
This is the second time that Professor Mutharika has been forced to comment on the ambitious financial plan introduced when Lilongwe expelled British High Commissioner and also fell-out with other donors.
Last week when he was opening parliament, the president also faulted some commentators whom he accused of not understanding the real idea about the zero deficit budget.
“The zero deficit budget has unwarranted unnecessary debate from those who haven’t understood the concept. The rationale behind the concept is that recurrent expenditures in the national budget be financed from our own domestic resources while development projects will continue to be financed by grants and loans from external sources,
“Forty eight years after independence we should not still be asking donors to pay our salaries, house allowances, government rentals. Is that what is meant by independence? ,” queried Mutharika in his state of the nation address in parliament last Friday.
Meanwhile, renowned economic commentator and historian Dr. Dudwa Phiri has said abandoning zero deficit budget cannot rescue Malawians from the current economic hardships.
“The immediate solution is to restore good relations between Malawi and donor partners so that they can start providing aid which they are withholding,” said Phiri.—Zodiak Online
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