via Opposition slams Mid-Term Fiscal Review Statement 12 September 2014 by Veneranda Langa
OPPOSITION politicians yesterday castigated Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa’s Mid-Term Fiscal Review Statement saying it was tantamount to “fiscal fascism” and had signs that civil servants will one day wake up without salaries.
Former Finance minister Tendai Biti said the statement revealed that Zimbabwe was in deep-seated recession because Chinamasa failed to put measures that encouraged production.
“The tax measures he has proposed show that prices of goods will go up and Zimbabwe will fast return to the 2008 era. It is fiscal fascism, and it is a statement that shows we should expect to see further stand still and deepening of recession, shortages of goods, general increase in inflation and a further reduction in revenue because companies will close,” Biti said.
“We are also facing a situation where government is going to default on the wage Bill. Chinamasa should have taken measures to encourage money and capital into Zimbabwe, as well as repeal the Indigenisation Act and adopt open door policies for investors,” he said.
MDC-T organising secretary Nelson Chamisa said: “He has offered limited breathing space for the poor and has reversed the gains of the inclusive government and gains of the ordinary people by putting duty on handsets, cars, as well as goods imported by charity organisations.
“He has imposed hardship and we are likely to see goods disappearing because of terror tactics which government has consolidated,” Chamisa said.
Chairperson of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Budget and Economic Planning David Chapfika (Zanu PF), however, hailed the budget statement saying it encouraged utilisation of locally-available resources.
“It is a budget for the ordinary person as it stimulates production. It is friendly as far as the worker is concerned because most people in Zimbabwe are employed on the land.”
MDC-T shadow Minister of Finance Tapiwa Mashakada said the budget review statement showed that government remained clueless on how to resolve the economic crisis.