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Govt should remain committed to keeping human dignity key of agenda – JCTR

THE Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection (JCTR) says it is elated that the new administration’s drive for economic stability has kept human dignity as a key part of its agenda by promising to address the basic needs for all citizens.

Releasing the Basic Needs and Nutrition Basket (BNNB) for a family of five living in Lusaka in the month of August 2021 which stood at K8,413.65, social economic development programme manager Chama Bowa Mundia said this showed an K81.87 decline from the July basket which stood at K8,495.52.

“Firstly, the month of August commenced with the start of the Decent Work Country Programme (DWCP) 2020-2022 under the Ministry of Labour and Social Security whose key priorities areas include; enhanced economic diversification to create more and better job opportunities for all, especially for young people, and comprehensive strengthened social protection systems,” Mundia noted. “Secondly, Zambia witnessed yet another peaceful transition of political leadership and the inauguration of the new President held on 24th August 2021. Top on the agenda of the new administration is to restore the nation’s macroeconomic stability towards a united, prosperous Zambia that guarantees basic needs for all its citizens. JCTR is elated that the new administration’s drive for economic stability has kept human dignity as a key part of its agenda by promising to address the basic needs for all citizens.”

She said the movement in the basket was attributed to price movements in items such as two kgs of soya pieces which went down by K64.56 to K108.81 from K173.37.

Other items are a 14-kg of other fruits which reduced by K18.74 from K316.56 to K297.82, and two kgs of beef reduced by K16.57 from K155.14 to K138.57.

She also cited 3.6 litres of cooking oil which showed a price decline margin of K17.17 moving to K148.94 from K166.11, a kilogramme of pounded groundnuts reduced by K15.52 from K61.22 to K45.70, and the price of 40kgs of vegetables which reduced by K15.24 from K517.08 to K501.24.

Mundia said the basket also recorded price increases in food items such as 16 kilogrammes of bananas which increased by K36.49 from K217.05 to K253.54.

From the non-food but essential items, Mundia said the price of a 90-kg bag of charcoal increased by K18.4 from K720 to K738.4.

She added that the abundance of soya beans on the market could have contributed to the downward change in the price of the commodity.

She said additionally, the price of other fruits such as apples and oranges had shown further decline to K297.82 from the high June price of K431.91.

Mundia said other factors contributing to price falls could be the downward movements in the exchange rate as other fruits were mainly imported.

She urged the new administration to remain unwaveringly committed to “this drive and register improved living conditions for its citizens in its five-year tenure”.

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