Government taking steps against overloaded lorries
Jubilee Debt (File photo)
The director of the Jubilee Debt Campaign, a British NGO, said on Saturday that the costs of Mozambique’s hidden debts should not be borne by its citizens but by the banks and the members of government who were responsible for incurring them.
“None of the costs of this debt should fall on the shoulders of ordinary people in Mozambique; the government members involved and the banks should be held accountable for their actions,” Sarah-Jayne Clifton writes in an email to Lusa.
In her email, Clifton also called on the British parliament to “act to ensure that a scandal like this involving London-based banks and loans issued under British law is never repeated”.
The Jubilee Debt Campaign is part of a global movement to “break the chains of debt and advocate a new financial system that puts people first”, the movement’s website reads, and has taken a critical stance on the more than US$1.4 billion of state-guaranteed debt secretly contracted by two public companies.
The statement comes days after the Budget Monitoring Forum (FMO), which brings together Mozambican civil society organizations, submitted a petition to the Constitutional Council asking that the loan to Ematum be declared unconstitutional.
The FMO’s Denise Namburete said that the Constitutional Council should repeal the resolution of the Assembly of the Republic that transfers Ematum’s US$850 million (EUR 750 million debt to the General State Account (CGE).
“The findings [of the debt audit summary] led FMO member organisations to file a petition, which request sfor inspection of constitutionality of the legislative act that led to the registration of illegal debts in the General State Account and its compliance with the Constitution,” said Denise Namburete.
The FMO will also request that the Constitutional Council declare the registration of the Proindicus and MAM debts in the CGE unconstitutional, as soon as the document is published in the Boletim da República.
The two companies also benefited from loans secretly endorsed by the former Mozambican government between 2013 and 2014.
Namburete said that the FMO acted in relation to Ematum first, because the CGE that included the debt contracted by the company had already been published in the Bulletin of the Republic.
Speaking at a press conference earlier this month, Andes Chivangue, also from the FMO, said the summary of the audit report on hidden debts shows that the projects funded were not designed to help the country’s development.Source: Lusa