HH Pledges Improved Pension System
By Anthony Mulowa , Times of Zambia
October 14, 2008
Party for National Development (UPND) president, Hakainde Hichilema has pledged to improve the pension administration system for public service employees if elected as Republican president on October 30.
Mr Hichilema said the UPND would administer the pensions system in a manner that would show appreciation to the workers who had served the Government diligently for a long time.
Addressing a mammoth rally at Kashikishi Basic School in Nchelenge on Sunday, Mr Hichilema said his government would ensure that exactly at the time an employee retired, a cheque for his or her terminal benefits would be issued.
He said retirees would not have to wait for years to get their benefits.
Mr Hichilema said the UPND government would also concentrate on improving the conditions of service for civil service employees.
He said for the Government to effectively carry out its functions, there was need for a highly motivated civil service.
He said the minimum a professional in the civil service would be paid monthly was K3.5 million with K1.5 million being tax-free income.
Mr Hichilema said with K3.5 being the minimum wage, an average employee would be able to access a mortgage from a commercial bank to buy or construct a house and be able to buy a motor vehicle without being heavily constrained financially.
“An employee in the civil service would be able to get a mortgage and service a loan for a car in K1 million and still have a surplus to do other things,” he said.
Mr Hichilema said it was the UPND’s policy to make education free from primary to tertiary level.
He said his government would also ensure that it created job opportunities for graduates so that they could start work immediately after finishing their training.
“When they (students) finish school, they must get jobs instead of just drinking beer. They will get good salaries so that they can look after the old,” he said.
Speaking at the same rally, UPND national chairperson for health and nutrition, Grace Mulenga said time had come for Zambia to elect a young and energetic leader.
Ms Mulenga said voting for old people meant that Zambia was going backwards.
She said Zambia was a rich country, which required a leader with good economic management skills.
And addressing another rally in Samfya, Mr Hichilema urged the people in the area to remember and think about their problems as they cast their votes on October 30.
Mr Hichilema said the people of Samfya should vote for a candidate like him who had solutions to their problems.
He said a UPND government would ensure that water and sanitation were improved in Luapula Province .
He said utilising the water resources and investing in the sector would adequately address the energy deficits.
Mr Hichilema said his government would also ensure that it improved the health sector in the country.
He said health care service would be improved so that all Zambians could access quality services in all health centres.
He said health centres would be stocked up with all the relevant drugs so that patients would not be referred to pharmacies to buy drugs.
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