Addressing thousands of people who had gathered at the National Sports Stadium in Harare on Saturday, April 18,2015 to commemorate the 35th independence anniversary of the republic of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe, in typical fashion, took the occasion to publicly lambast Patrick Chinamasa and to boldly announce that his regime had never made the decision to suspend the payment of bonuses to civil servants for the next two years. In characteristic populist mode, Mugabe huffed and puffed; declaring that Cabinet had never met to deliberate on the issue of the suspension of civil servants’ bonuses. He went further and claimed that even his two Vice Presidents, who were present in the crowd at the National Sports Stadium, were also not aware of that ground – breaking policy decision. With due respect, therefore, someone somewhere was not telling the nation the truth.
The MDC condemns this lackadaisical and extremely casual approach to otherwise very important policy matters. The ZanuPF regime has never taken the people of Zimbabwe in general and civil servants in particular, seriously. This is a regime that thinks that the downtrodden and poverty -stricken millions of Zimbabweans owe it a big favour. This is a regime that is routinely contemptuous of the interests of the majority of the people. Robert Mugabe and the ZanuPF regime that he leads are pre – occupied with self – aggrandisement, gross misgovernance, insipid corruption and political thuggery. This is a regime that has gone completely awry. Little wonder, therefore, that at least 85% of the people of Zimbabwe are classified as living in abject poverty since they subsist on less than US$2 per day.
It is highly unlikely that Patrick Chinamasa would have made such a ground -breaking and historic announcement before the matter had been fully debated and agreed upon in Cabinet. Assuming that Chinamasa made a unilateral and unauthorised announcement, which is highly unlikely, then Mugabe should proceed to immediately dismiss him from his post as Finance and Economic Development Minister. Chinamasa has been in government service since 1990 and he is acutely aware of the procedure that has to be followed when important government policy decisions are announced. The MDC is utterly convinced that Patrick Chinamasa was simply articulating and announcing a policy decision that had been agreed upon by the ZanuPF regime. To be believe anything to the contrary would be tantamount to believing an unprecedented absurdity.
As the country’ s largest and most popular political party, the MDC hereby calls upon Patrick Chinamasa to immediately resign if, indeed, it is true and correct that he made a unilateral and unauthorised decision to suspend the payment of salaries to civil servants until 2017. Zimbabwe deserves to be administered in an orderly and logical manner. The majority of the people of Zimbabwe have been pauperised by the ruinous and disastrous policies that have been relentlessly pursued by the renegade ZanuPF regime over the years. The chaotic and violent so – called land reform program has reduced Zimbabwe from being the breadbasket of Southern Africa into a basket case in a very short period of 15 years. The ill – conceived and retrogressive so – called indigenisation policy has decimated commerce and industry and to date, the majority of employable Zimbabweans have been reduced into near destitute street vendors and cross – border traders. Thousands of young but highly skilled and educated Zimbabweans have sought economic refuge in neighbouring countries where they now helpless victims of xenophobic attacks.
Both Robert Mugabe and Patrick Chinamasa should urgently come clean on what, exactly, is the official government position regarding the payment of bonuses to civil servants. Anything short of this would simply not be acceptable.