THE Zambian Voice has said the upward adjustment of President Edgar Lungu’s salary should not warrant criticism because other constitutional office bearers have also received wage hikes.
Zambian Voice executive director Chilufya Tayali said in an interview yesterday that it was unfair for opposition political parties to criticise Mr Lungu for benefitting from the move, which cut across all the three arms of Government.
“We think that it is totally unfair for the opposition to make a big issue out of this because President Lungu did not issue an instruction for his salary to be increased.
“All constitutional office bearers, including members of Parliament (MPs), have received salary hikes. Therefore, criticism against the President is misdirected,” Mr Tayali said.
He said opposition MPs in particular were insincere by pointing fingers at the President with full knowledge of the benefits that they had accrued from their improved remunerations.
Mr Tayali said opposition MPs were in the forefront calling on the Government to lift the wage freeze, and one of the benefits of lifting the wage freeze was increased salaries for civil servants.
He said the President was just a beneficiary of the move and people criticising him were merely playing petty and personal politics.
National Revolution Party (NRP) president Cosmo Mumba said in a separate interview that the increment was justified because the President had responsibilities to attend to.
Dr Mumba said the increment was long overdue as the Head of State worked hard to guarantee peace, security and ensure national developmental goals were on course at all times.
He said the President had responsibilities which included meeting unbudgeted-for expenses when he attended social events.
Dr Mumba said those criticising the President should understand that sometimes part of his earnings were used to finance different causes across the country.