FORMER National Cross Border Traders Association president Felix Daka says PF ministers are sleeping while misleading President Edgar Lungu over COVID-19.
In an interview, Daka said the President is being ill advised on how to open the nation’s economy.
“Lusaka is not Zambia. We need good ways of dealing with the economy. We, as cross-border traders are too old to demonstrate in the bush like our youths, but we appeal to the government to open bars and night clubs. If airports that helped bring COVID-19 are open, why not bars and night clubs?” he asked. “We don’t qualify to get loans from commercial banks using the government’s stimulus package which is supposed to give us funds to stimulate our businesses. Our ministers are sleeping; they are ill advising the President on how to deal with COVID-19.”
Daka called for government financing of businesses run by locals to cushion the impact of COVID-19.
“Commercial banks are not ready to assist small-scale businesses. They want to give money to their clients. As cross-border traders, we are asking why the government has given money to only commercial banks and not to financial institutions that provide credits to small traders such as Madison Finance,” said Daka. “Already the K10 billion has been wasted. The problem is that the government is too slow to attend to emergencies. Money for retirees is a good idea, but US $29 million for aquaculture it is not good. They should have sent this money to mining of gold which was going to employ over a million youths. There are already a lot of fish ponds that can make us survive. We have a lot of youths who are skilled as bricklayers and plumbers, why not give them money to start construction companies to build houses even for government? Why give it to musicians who even include some that have been arrested for illicit activities and now turning up as PF cadres?”