Family Poverty Datum Line shoots up

The Chronicle

Harare Bureau

THE Poverty Datum Line (PDL) for an average family of five shot up to $924 for the month of April 2019, a 5,8 percent increase from $872 in March, ZimStats has revealed.

Total food consumption alone for a family of five stood at $319 for the month of April, eight percent up from $294.66 in the month of March 2019 while an individual’s food and total consumption was pegged at $63.72 and $184.86 respectively. 

The rise in PDL has been attributed to relentless price increase on basic commodities such as mealie-meal, rice, flour, salt, cooking oil, among others.

Rampant pricing has led most shops to peg basic commodities prices beyond the reach of many working class citizens. 

According to the figures Matabeleland North is the most expensive province in the country with a total monthly consumption for a family of five costing $995.30, Matabeleland South is the second most expensive province as its total consumption for the month of April stood at 972.78.

Harare is the third most expensive at $952.71. The figures indicate that Mashonaland East is the cheapest province with a total monthly consumption for a family of five costing $857.14 while Manicaland consumption stood at $899.66 as of April 2019.

Year on year poverty datum line costs, grew by 8,1 percentage points to 62 percent in April from 54.1 percent in March as year on year Consumer Price Index (CPI) for April stood at 76 percent from 67 percent recorded in March a nine percent points surge.

Apex Council chairwoman, Mrs Cecelia Alexander, is on record saying salaries have been eroded by price distortions in the market.

“We are not requesting for an increment from Government but we want them to restore value of the money we used to get since July last year when we got a 17.5 percent increment,” she said earlier this year.

Economists contend that it is judicious for businesses — in the context of Zimbabwe’s challenging environment — to link the measurement of performance to the reward systems.