Sampa says only 5 by-elections were budgeted for as Muhabi warns of choas

Commerce Deputy Minister Miles Sampa has disclosed that government had only budgeted for about five by-elections.

This is despite the country having unprecedented number of by-elections mainly due to resignation of opposition Members of Parliament to join the ruling Patriotic Front.
The country will in the next two months alone hold five by-elections four of which have been as a result of these defections.

Sampa who is former Deputy Minister of Finance said it is however necessary to hold all by-elections even if they exceed the budget because it is constitutional. He said the constitution spells that there should be by-elections after the resignation of any Member of Parliament adding that failure to do so would be going against the constitution.

The Deputy Minister also brushed aside insinuations that the large cabinet under the Patriotic Front (PF) government is a drain on the economy saying it will not bring any benefit if the cabinet is reduced. Sampa said he was willing to forgo fuel allowance if people feel that it can help reduce poverty.

He said this during Assignment programme hosted by Muvi, a private Lusaka based Television on Sunday evening, May 19, 2013.

Meanwhile, Communication Director in the Office of the MMD President, Muhabi Lungu who featured on the same programme warned that there will be chaos in the country if the PF remain arrogant and does not reverse the decision to remove subsidy.

Lungu argued that previous attempts by the past governments to remove subsidy sparked riots in the country.

The MMD official also dispelled reasons that the removal of the subsidy is aimed at allocating resources to other needy sectors saying the MMD did major projects like the Mongu-Kalabo roads, Levy Mwanawasa stadium and other big projects while implementing subsidies.