By Alois Vinga
A grouping of civil society organizations (CSOs) have demanded the urgent introduction of a wealth tax to ease the trickle down effect of financial resources to the country’s “have-nots” with the aim of reducing poverty levels. alarming poverty.
Speaking to NewZimbabwe.com, the Zimbabwe Fight Inequality Alliance, spokesperson for a wide network of 18 member NGOs, Janet Zhou declared a week of action, lobbying the government to introduce a tax for the wealthy from the country.
“We call for the establishment and implementation of a wealth tax to facilitate the redistribution of wealth from people who have too much in order to meet the needs of the suffering majority. The abolition of unfair and harmful tax incentives for multinational corporations is a long-awaited outcome of a stakeholder consultation process,” Zhou said.
The remarks coincided with commemorations of the Global Week of Action Against Inequality which began on January 15, 2022, which also has a similar theme, Time To Tax the Rich and build People’s Recovery Plans for Covid-19.
“Poverty in Zimbabwe has reached unsustainable levels, with 7.9 million people pushed into extreme poverty. Amazingly, the wealthy, political elites and wealthy corporations have seen an incredible increase in wealth and assets whose origins are unfortunately the result of illicit public transfers into the hands of a few individuals,” she said.
Zhou stressed that it is time for the government to introduce a one-off Covid19 tax for companies and individuals who have made phenomenal profits since 2020 to fund a just and equitable response to COVID-19-induced poverty and suffering. Covid19.
She proposed the urgent removal of the 2% tax or the alternative of setting it above the poverty benchmark (PDL) which currently stands at $48,054 for a family of six.
Acceleration of lifestyle audits by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) in conjunction with the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority has also been requested.
“The restriction of dominant monopolies was also necessary in key economic sectors such as telecommunications and energy to strengthen consumer protection by regulating the ability of dominant market players to raise consumer prices and by instituting systems of stronger capital controls to minimize leakage of public resources,” Zhou added.