Zimbabwe Coalition on Debt and Development (ZIMCODD) has intensified the call for government to treat the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe’s debt as any other debt citing the transfer of the debt to government as a burden to the tax payers.
The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe incurred a debt amounting to$1,35 billion before December 31 2008. Government then proposed a Debt Assumption Bill which seeks to authorise it to take over and provide for settlement of certain liabilities incurred by the central bank.
Addressing the gathering of people who attended a public forum which was organised by ZIMCODD to delineate the Debt Assumption Bill and its implication on tax payers, ZIMCODD board member, Sarah Mwandiambira, said the debt should be treated like any other debt.
“The RBZ debt should be treated just like any other debt. It should not be isolated,” she said.
The social and justice movement which has been at the forefront calling for government to set up a public debt commission also called for domestication of the debt.
“As ZIMCODD we are calling for domestic debt mobilisation as the bill is meant to burden the tax payers.
“RBZ should liquidate its non-core assets to pay off part of the debt that was incurred for public debt. Somehow they should show a commitment not to be crybabies,” she said.
The ZIMCODD board member called for an extensive audit to divulge the beneficiaries of the debt.
“We should have an audit of the debt and the audit should include the assets that are lying idle and some of the assets should be sold off to settle the debt,” she said.
She also said that, “The bill should be amended according to the input of the ordinary people. We should have a public debt commission which should be inclusive of those people that are affected,”
ZIMCODD contends that the passing of the Debt Assumption Bill will have negative impacts on tax payers who are already wallowing in poverty at the expense of senior government officials who benefited from the debt.
“Chikwereti hachingobhadharwi usingazive kuti chakashandisewi ,chakambopiwa ani akapiwa mari, chakaita basa rei kana ukange wakwereta wobhadharaka kwete kukweretera vamwe avo vanenge vari kutotambura,” said Mwandiambira.