Economy

Brace for hard times – ZACA

By OLIVER SAMBOKO
CONSUMERS should brace themselves for more hard times following an increase in essential commodity prices, the Zambia Consumer Association (ZACA) has warmed.
ZACA Executive Secretary, Juba Sakala, said in an interview that the general welfare of the public was also going to be negatively affected because most households were now going to spend more on food.
He said this was because families were now spending more time at home as they observed Covid-19 preventive measures.
“Because people are now working from home and spending most of their time doing nothing, food consumption at household level is likely to go up resulting in people spending more on food at the expense of other things,” he said.
He said poor households living below the poverty datum line and those who cannot work under the current circumstances will require adequate support from Government to minimize hardship.
Mr Sakala said, while Government had come up with a strategy to help businesses, it should also continue to pursue ways of helping households cope in the face of the Covid-19 outbreak. “We urge Government to get detailed real-time information for improved interventions that will ensure that not only businesses continue running, but decisions at ensuring that the ordinary and poor citizens continue to survive,” he said.
Mr Sakala said the Covid-19 outbreak had brought a lot of hardships hence the need for Government to come up with strategy aimed at lessening the burden on its citizens.
He proposed that Government should engage the Zambia Association of Manufacturers with a view of introducing Right Price (RP) stickers on products.
This, he said, would ensure that retailers did not use Covid-19 outbreak to exploit consumers.

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