Abdul Razzaq Habza, the Secretary of the Consumer Protection Society, stated that he does not foresee any salary increases in the near future. However, he urged the government to explore alternative funding sources, such as taxes, to improve the financial situation of state workers. He emphasized that the government has been slow in addressing this issue.
Habza expressed his disappointment with the current state of affairs, saying, “As citizens, we are ashamed to admit the truth to the media. We are so desperate for food that some people are dying of hunger, while others are forced to eat spoiled food.” He further added that despite the government’s recent tax hikes and price increases for essential commodities, citizens have yet to see any tangible benefits.
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Habza highlighted the scarcity of goods in the market, citing the exorbitant prices of essential items such as sugar, chicken, and meat as evidence. He emphasized that if these items were more readily available, their prices would have decreased.
According to Habza, families are left with two options to cope with the situation: either purchase goods of questionable quality at a low price, risking fraud and health issues, or ration their consumption and hope that future generations will not have to face similar hardships.
He clarified that the people we see in malls and restaurants are not representative of the general population. Rather, they constitute the 2% of the population who have an income, whether earned legally or illegally.
Habza further commented on the current situation, stating that citizens and the country as a whole are burdened with an unjust wealth gap resulting from widespread corruption and extortion. He emphasized that his organization is actively working to combat this issue and advocating for legislation to address it. Habza stressed that it’s crucial to uphold the dignity of employees and prevent them from being forced to bribe auditors.
Habza also expressed concerns regarding the function of the Syrian Trade Organization, questioning whether it is meant to be a service or commercial institution. He criticized the organization’s performance, pointing out that their prices are almost identical to market prices despite claiming to be a service-based entity.