via ‘Zanu PF will destroy local authorities’ by Musa Dube
FORMER local government deputy minister, Sesel Zvidzai says the new Zanu PF government was likely to destroy the local and urban authorities because of its populist policies.
Zvidzai, a senior MDC-T official, said during the inclusive government they had managed to craft a constitution that guided the proper governance of local authorities.
He said he feared that all efforts by the inclusive government would go down the drain as the Zanu PF administration takes over.
“My own guess is informed by history, their unmatched ability to demolish what serves people. I guess, therefore that we will begin to see retrogression, excessive controls and the decay of governance and services,” said Zvidzai.
Outgoing Local Government minister, Ignatius Chombo in July directed local authorities to scrap all outstanding rates as at June 30 2013, in what observers viewed as a vote buying exercise to lure the electorate to Zanu PF ahead of elections.
Since then, some local authorities have not been able to pay their workers’ salaries while service delivery plummeted.
Zvidzai said rural and urban councils faced serious challenges before 2008 but some were addressed by inclusive government.
“Rural and Urban Councils were at their worst ebb in 2008 when the inclusive government took over from Zanu PF. Rewind and think of the cholera menace, impassable roads, environmental damage, and absence of potable water. There were no services to talk about. Rural water points had died with no attention at all. The situation was worse than dire,” he said adding that he feared the situation would slide back to the 2008 era with Zanu PF government in place.
“The new government is a re- run of pre-2008 situation. This is a government that was born out of electoral fraud. It has got no reason to thank people,” he said.
“History will repeat itself again and massive dispossessions of assets will set in, populist approaches will carry the day again, and unemployment will rise as more of what remains withers,” said Zvidzai.
He said the new government’s top priority should be to “actualise the peoples demand for devolution and autonomous sub national governments”.
“When such foundation is firmly laid, things such as water and sanitation, housing delivery and waste management will be dealt with more effectively, thus providing more than value for money services,” he said.