Blessings Mashaya 25 February 2017
HARARE – President Robert Mugabe’s rural home district of Zvimba has
controversially grabbed the largest amounts of money allocated to the
Registrar General (RG) department, Parliament heard this week.
The move – likely to cause shock in political and civil society circles –
apparently confirms the skewed distribution of national resources in the
country, with most resources being allocated to areas where Mugabe and his
closest cronies hail from.
This has created imbalances in national development and angered other
regions which felt marginalised.
The disbursement of RG office funds last year has raised questions about
Mugabe’s role in ensuring fair distribution of national resources,
especially after his home district, a place of little commercial activity,
got the lion’s share.
“It appeared Mashonaland West province was receiving more resources than
other provinces as evidenced by the number of cars bought using the
retention fund and other fringe benefits,” a report tabled in Parliament
by the portfolio committee on Defence, Home Affairs and Security Services
The committee noted that the offices were not accessible to the public for
the processing of documents internally after 3pm at the Central Registry
and provincial offices and yet its supposed to be open from 0745 hours to
1645 hours, five days a week from Monday to Friday.
“In districts and sub-offices countrywide, offices are closed to the
public at 4pm. However, provincial, district and sub-offices are open
during weekends and public holidays for purposes of issuing burial orders
and this is commendable as the public is not denied of this essential
service,” the report said.
The provincial registrar informed the committee that there were four cases
of corruption that had been detected in the Midlands province.
“Some offenders had been charged and others were still waiting for
finalisation of their cases
“The core values of the organisation were not being shared among the
staff, resulting in negative attitude and poor service delivery to the
clients. This impacted negatively on service delivery.
“Some of the officers had an attitude problem at leadership level, that
is, the provincial registrar in Kwekwe.
“In Chinhoyi, they displayed lack of preparedness in dealing with matters
relating to the committee’s visit. Certain requirements were not explained
to the clients and conditions set were perceived stringent, much to the
detriment of service delivery particularly in Mashonaland West and
Midlands provinces,” the report said.
The committee also noted the poor customer service in various provinces.
“… customer care in some provinces is none existent and the service
charter is not owned by the department in some of the places visited, that
is Zhombe. Officials could not articulate what was on the service charter.
“There is inadequate office accommodation in Kadoma and yet there is an
uncompleted and abandoned structure which could, when completed and
utilised, enhance the quality of service delivery by the department.”