‘Mugabe blows $20m on trips’

via ‘Mugabe blows $20m on trips’ – DailyNews Live Tendai Kamhungira • 12 April 2016

HARARE – Former Finance minister and People’s Democratic Party (PDP) leader Tendai Biti has sensationally claimed that President Robert Mugabe has this year alone blown almost $20 million on foreign trips.

Biti, who was the Finance minister during the inclusive government era from 2009 to 2013 and clashed on several occasions with Mugabe over constant foreign travels, told journalists at his Harare offices yesterday, that Zanu PF has now run out of ideas to manage the country.

As the Finance minister Biti used to bankroll Mugabe’s foreign trips and has an inkling on the expenditure on foreign trips.

He said the country is going through a liquidity crunch spawned by government’s actions of raiding RTGS (Real Time Gross Settlement) balances at the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.

“The government is raiding these accounts to raise cash so as to support their bloated expenditures such as endless foreign trips for the president and hotel bills for (Vice President) Phelekezela Mphoko.

Mphoko has been staying in a hotel since he was appointed vice president in 2014 and even though there has been calls from both the opposition in the governing party for him to leave the lap of luxury in a presidential suite he has been adamant in his demands for accommodation fit for the royalty.

His lavish lifestyle has provoked the anger of many ordinary Zimbabweans, especially as the majority are trapped in the unforgiving jaws of hunger.

“This is against the fact that Mugabe has so far spent almost $20 million on foreign trips, including trips to obscure events such as the one in India,” Biti said.

The former MDC secretary-general said Zimbabwe is grinding to a halt as the Zanu PF led government has no desire of turning things around.

“In short, they are as carefree and indifferent as they are clueless,” he said, adding that the country needs structural reforms if it is to move forward.

He said the Zanu PF government failed to meet its 2013 election promise of creating over two million jobs, as several companies have since closed down instead.

Biti also said the Indigenisation policy, which requires foreign-owned firms to cede 51 percent of their shares to locals, must be repealed, if the country is to lure any investors and get foreign direct investment.

“There is massive shrinkage of the economy since 2013 with the growth rate being minus 1,8 percent in 2015 and that of 2016 being minus 3,5 percent. The outlook period of 2016/2018 will be in the red. Land invasions are continuing, the Indigenisation Act has not been repealed and continues to scare investors and the civil service is still infested with thousands of ghost workers,” he said, adding that Zimbabwe is in a circle of economic recession.

“…the government has started the crime of printing money through the issuance of Treasury bills that are now clogging the market. This government has been criminally issuing Treasury bills with total domestic debt now standing at $6 billion. The continued reliance on toxic Treasury bills is a major factor contributing to the current liquidity crisis,” he said.

Biti said, Zimbabwe must walk the talk on policy reforms and increase transparency.

He however said the only way to deal with Zanu PF was for opposition political parties to come together and work as a united force.

He also criticised government’s plan to regulate the social media, claiming this was a fascist plot and the hallmark of desperation from a country that already has a battered international image.

“Zimbabwe is burning and we are in trouble. Mugabe and his corrupt cronies lack the competence and the commitment to provide solutions to our national challenges which they in any case are guilty of creating,” Biti said.


  • comment-avatar
    Zvakwana 6 years ago

    The mind boggles to see what utter waste and blatant disregard for the state of the nation,the people of Zimbabwe are prepared to put up with.

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    BT seems to me to be one of the very few Zimbos capable of rational thought.

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    Ngoto Zimbwa 6 years ago

    BT is a paid up member of the ZANU wrecking crew. Don’t believe what comes out of this divisive character.

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    Tjingababili 6 years ago

    HI BIG SPENDER!!!@@@@

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    IAN SMITH 6 years ago

    And the Zimbos sit back and allow it, IT’S A CIRCUS

    WHO CARES???

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    Trebor Ebagum 6 years ago

    So what’s the problem? Zimbabwe is Bob’s little fiefdom. He can do anything he wants. You sheep need to learn to obey and don’t criticize.

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    Mazano Rewayi 6 years ago

    Traditionally the chief gets the best land, the best women, the best food and is always praised – it’s his birthright. The British might have taught us their language but they could not erase our belief systems. Never mind the terminology used, for all intents and purposes, Zim is a feudal kingdom. Remember in 1987 we exterminated the pangolins!!

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      mshayazabhoshe 6 years ago

      msunonyoko Mazano Rewayi nja yothuvi Shona ledoti!uth ngo 87 wazeka unyoko angizwa uthni?

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        Mazano Rewayi 6 years ago

        Sorry my friend you completely missed the point. In 1987 Zimbabwe adopted the Executive Presidency and people foolishly captured pangolins to give to the president who was then viewed as the country’s “chief”. It was stupid. Even now we still have people saying he should die in office like a traditional chief. This is of course backward thinking and must be condemned. Ndebeles, Shonas and whites are suffering from this feudal mentality and ALL must fight it. The modern Zimbabwe belongs to all who share in the dream to make it a better place – colour, religion and ethnicity are not the issue. Thanks for highlighting how sensitive the tribal issue is but I did not see the tribal connotations in my first post but I understand. I hope you understand also.

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    Ngoto Zimbwa 6 years ago

    @ Mazano Rewayi
    After what the man called you, I can only applaud your good nature.

    A commodity sorely lacking in some of our fellow citizens.