President Edgar Lungu has directed new Secretary to the Cabinet Simon Miti to ensure that the public service works more prudently.
The Head of State has directed Mr Miti to meet all Permanent Secretaries and senior government officials on a monthly basis and also inform all civil servants that in view of the current economic situation, government needs to work more prudently.
He said working prudently and managing results by doing more with less resources is the new mantra that government is working with, at all levels.
Speaking during the official opening of the fourth session of the Twelfth National Assembly, President Edgar Lungu emphasized on the need to dismantle arrears, while curbing further accumulation.
“My government has taken this very seriously and I have directed those tasked with the responsibility of managing the debt stock to ensure that stringent measures are actively implemented”, he said.
He stated that the non-discretionary debt expenditure which comprises personnel emoluments and debt stands at 50.1 percent and 40 percent respectively, giving a total of 90.1 percent of the annual budget.
President Lungu said this leaves the discretionary expenditure amount at about 9.9 percent of the annual budget, which is alarming.
He further said it is cardinal that personnel emoluments must be reflective of service delivery to the Zambian people.
The Head of State has since directed Secretary to the Cabinet to immediately clean up the public service payroll, in order to stop hemorrhage.
He explained that at the heart of austerity measures going forward, government will implement actions to manage the debt stock and curb any further accumulation, in order to save money and get rid of arrears owed to suppliers.
President Lungu further said that positive results must be achieved at all costs as well as ensure that the need for ministries and public institutions to collaborate on cross-cutting issues is addressed.
He told Mr Miti that all sectors of the economy must be streamlined, to ensure normality in all sub-sectors.
The Head of State noted that such measures will begin to increase liquidity in the economy and place the economy on an accelerated growth trajectory.