Cama discredits Malawi 2020/21 budget, bemoans new taxes

The Consumers Association of Malawi (CAMA) has described the Tonse Alliance’s first national budget as empty and a total departure from the litany of promises the Tonse Alliance made prior to the Fresh Presidential Election (FPE) on June 23, 2020.

Kapito: The budget failed to roll out implementation of the pledged universal fertiliser subsidy, reducing fees for passports, duty free weeks, and zero-connection fees for electricity and water.

CAMA executive director, John Kapito, in a statement issued on Saturday, said the 2020/21 National Budget Statement which Finance Minister Felix Mlusu delivered in Parliament in Lilongwe on Friday, does not respond to any economic recovery of the country.

Kapito said it is sad that the budget is not capturing any of the promises the alliance made during the campaign.

“A budget is a commitment and letter of intent with Malawians and most Malawians expected that the new government would do things differently from the previous government. Unfortunately, the current budget statement is unable to articulate key issues that the government needs to pursue in order to resuscitate the ailing economy, it has made a lot of assumptions that are unattainable and completely impossible to achieve when it has ignored the basic things that can generate resources that are key to support many projects and activities that are in the budget,” he said.

Kapito wonders why the budget formulators did not include the universal fertilizer subsidy programme, free electricity and water connection, reduction in passport and driving licenses and the creation of jobs and removal of taxes on some basic goods and services as promised during the campaign.

“Instead, the budget has introduced measures that will hurt many consumers such as the introduction of a new tax on some products such as cooking oil and taxes on winning bets, which has become a new income generator to many unemployed Malawians, most of Malawians are not employed and the increase of the tax threshold will not benefit as many Malawians,” he narrates.

He further states that the budget is selective to benefit a few Malawians and defeats the whole purpose of a Nation Commitment Statement.

The consumer organisation stressed that the budget statement is “completely empty’’ without Tonse Alliance pledged universal fertiliser subsidy, reducing fees for passports, duty free weeks, and zero-connection fees for electricity and water. .

“Malawians are looking for a leadership that is focused, visionary and understand that needs of its population and is able to keep the trust and credibility with its people. It is unfortunate that the budget is a complete departure from what Malawians expected from the current administration.

“Malawians removed the previous administration because of its failure to understand the economic challenges and we don’t see the difference between the old and the new administration. We expected this new administration to have done things differently than this sham of a budget that is given,” reads the  statement.

But Mlusu pledged that the Affordable Inputs Programme [AIP] will reach out to 4.2 million farm families, saying it is “not far from being a universal subsidy program.’’

On free water and electricity connections, Mlusu reiterated government’s commitment to ensure implementation of the initiative after reforms at the State utility companies.

The Treasury czar said the outlined programmes in the budget will ensure that one of the key components of the Tonse manifesto—the creation of one million jobs—materialises.

The minister said the job creation agenda will be buoyed by a number of several initiatives that have already been initiated.

Some of the initiatives Mlusu mentioned included establishment of modern and fully equipped job centres which will first be established in Lilongwe, Blantyre and Mzuzu.

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Hawell
Hawell
5 days ago

Shame on you Mlusu are you serious 4.2 million beneficiaries is similar to universal fertilizer? School yake iti baba munapita? Remember this if ppo voted for tonse alliance is due to universal fertilizer which would go at K4,495. Now in a diplomatic approach you would have said by end of 3 years will make the programme universal that could be fair and understood. politicians fake ppo so we have seen there is no difference with dpp hence will see 2025 because i foresee tonse alliance disbanding by 2023 or 24 apa mpamene dpp idzakukwapuleni mwa mtima biii ngati simusamala. And… Read more »

Changalume
Changalume
5 days ago

Criticism of the national budget is most welcome, and for sure not everyone even on the Tonse Alliance side will find it meeting their needs/expectations – fact of life given differences in preferences and limited resources, among other reasons. But then there is one John Kapito opening his mouth this time. As some have said, we saw this coming a mile or two away. It has been widely said (well, voters said it in the June 2020 election) incompetence, poor planning, mismanagement, tribalism, nepotism, cronyism, theft of public resources and corruption of epic proportions during the DDP’s stints in government… Read more »

M'malawi weni-weni
M'malawi weni-weni
6 days ago

Job Centres don’t create jobs as one contributor has pointed out. In fact there is already a website called “The Job Centre” in Malawi established in 2005.

And we have had the function of job centres at Labour Office for decades. But the most employers doubted the ability of these labour offices to security screen job seekers.

In my view creating 1 million jobs in first year of Tonse administration is not possible because only mechanism is investment.

Psyuta
6 days ago

Chakwera matako awonekera tsopano. Nonse alliance is a bunch of seasoned and pathological liars.

Mbonga Matoga
Mbonga Matoga
6 days ago

What is cama and who elected John Kapito to be the life president or permanent chief executive of cama? This is a conman who take bribes from ruling parties to keep him quite……well this time you can make as much noise as you want but this Tonse government will not give you a single penny. You are talking about passport fees, but how does that compare to the increase in the tax threshold from K45000 to K100000, which one is more potent to help the lives of Malawians? We all know that Kapito is a cadet hence his silence during… Read more »

President Chisokonezo

The Canaan or tiri kwa Phsrao konkuja

jobvu
jobvu
6 days ago

Tonse alliance kuganiza ngati mbuzi

Mannequin 2
6 days ago

12 months – 3 months = 9 months. 3 months – 0 jobs created. 9 months – 1 million jobs created ……. .. .. [ do job centres create jobs?….i wonder!]

Vasco da Gama
Vasco da Gama
6 days ago

Although the promises made during campaign period cannot be fulfilled in the first year, how come before anything promised has been done they are continuing to add more promises ie the houses and offices for MPs? We said it all along that the noises they dished out during campaigns were just gimmicks and will be very difficult to undertake. How do you run government programs on nothing? The economy is heading south and you expect to develop? Unfortunately, those who are rushing to back their parties seem not to be in the country. I am saying this because whatever hardships… Read more »

Chamwini
Chamwini
6 days ago

John Kapito expired long time ago, listen to him at your own risk

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