Cama says it is mobilising consumers in Malawi to stage a protest in January 2013 and present a petition to government highlighting areas requiring reforms to improve the current economic situation.
However, government spokesperson and Minister of Information Moses Kunkuyu says as the situation stands, it would be uncalled for for anyone to call for a mass strike since, he said, things have so far improved compared to eight months ago.
In an interview on Wednesday, Consumers Association of Malawi (Cama) executive director John Kapito said it is not Cama pushing for the strike, but the consumers themselves after getting concerned about government running its affairs whereas people are being hit hard with the current economic downturn.
He said one of the major concerns is the current floatation of the kwacha which has resulted in ever-increasing prices of basic consumer commodities.
Kapito argued that people are not worried about the devaluation as propagated by certain quarters, but that it is the floatation of the kwacha that is biting them heavily.
â€œFloatation of the currency was not part of the demand for the devaluation of the kwacha. Again, our economy is not expanding because it relies on consumer purchasing power which may still go down,â€ said Kapito.
He said another area of concern is the current governmentâ€™s expenditure on both internal and external travel. Kapito said it does not make sense to have the President spend almost K15 million (about $45 454) on a local trip aimed at donating items worth almost K1 million (about $3 030).
Kapito said Cama is talking to consumers across the country, starting at district level, and working on modalities to make the strike as effective as possible without a repeat of the July 20 2011 incidents where 20 people lost their lives.
But Kunkuyu said every right-minded Malawian can see how the country is moving now and the sort of hope Malawians have that it would not be necessary to call for a strike to further improve the situation.
Kunkuyu said there is even more optimism with the just launched Economic Recovery Plan (ERP).