CSPR advises Govt on fiscal discipline

GOVERNMENT has been commended for taking into consideration a number of proposals made by Civil Society Poverty Reduction (CSPR) in its formulation of the Seventh National Development Plan (SNDP).

Civic Participation Advocacy Programme officer Maxon Nkhoma said his organisation was happy that the Ministry of Finance had considered a number of proposals during the consultative national symposium on the formulation of the Seventh National Development Plan (SNDP).

Mr Nkhoma said the speech by President Edgar Lungu had resonated well with a number of expectations and proposals which CSPR and other interest groups had been submitting to Government for consideration.

“We are pleased that the Head of State has made bold steps to include such recommendations in government plans in his pursuit to develop the country,” Mr Nkhoma said.

Mr Nkhoma said the consultative national symposium on the formulation of the SNDP proposed that an independent Ministry responsible for national planning and development be created, creation and development of a sustainable roads maintenance strategy plan through creation of toll gates, among other things which the President had done.

He said the address demonstrated Government commitments and clearly outlined strategies that it had put in place in addressing various social and economic challenges affecting the development of the country.

Mr Nkhoma said CSPR was calling for greater fiscal discipline if Government was going to address the current economic challenges facing the country by ensuring that expenditure was planned for in the national budget.

He said the Government must guard against increasing its expenditure on personal emoluments at the expense of providing adequate resources to social sectors such as education, health, social protection, environment and agriculture which were key in poverty reduction.

“While the intention of creating new ministries is to ensure improved efficiency and investment outcomes from government programmes in order for Government to serve the people better, the Government must guard against increasing its expenditure on personal emoluments at the expense of providing adequate resources for social sectors,” he said.

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