Now that the Zanu PF conference is over, there is need to take stock of what was deliberated on and how it will affect the country in at least the next 12 months.
Source: Zanu PF sycophancy drowns rationale debate – NewsDay Zimbabwe December 19, 2016
Comment: NewsDay Editor
There were discussions that need further interrogation like food aid, Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa’s comments about the economy and the return of students’ grants for those in tertiary institutions.
Chinamasa, for all his hard work, now sounds like a parrot, repeating his boss’ unsubstantiated claims about the economy.
We will not belabour the point, as we have addressed this issue elsewhere and we do not share Chinamasa’s optimism for the growth of the economy.
Food aid distribution continues to be a sticking issue, amid claims of partisan allocations.
Social Welfare minister Prisca Mupfumira can try to deflect the issue, but this is one thing that always arises and she needs to address this as a matter of urgency.
Then there is the issue of students’ grants raised by Higher and Tertiary Education minister Jonathan Moyo.
While this is a good idea and will go a long way in alleviating hardships suffered by students, there is need to address the modalities — that is where the money will come from, how much it will be and how it would be paid back considering the high default rate on other such schemes.
There is also need to address this grants’ issue vis-a-vis the cadet scheme that the government introduced a few years ago.
The country cannot hop from one policy to another without knowing how the previous one fared and how different the new one would be to its predecessor.
While there are several things that can be discussed, interrogated and improved on, sadly they are drowned by the sycophantic praise for President Robert Mugabe, which does little to develop the country.
The youth league’s proposal to have February 21 declared a national holiday can as well as be plucked out from the pages of George Orwell’s allegorical novel, Animal Farm.
Surely, the era of obsequiousness is long past and we cannot be talking about life presidency in this day and age.
Africa and the world have moved past the era of life presidents and if Zimbabwe does not want to be left behind then it should drop this self-serving idea.
Mugabe’s peers, who seemed to be proponents of life presidency, are now leaving power and this has been accompanied by the improvements in their economies.
Mugabe does not have to look further than Angola, where its leader, Jose Eduardo dos Santos has decided to step down after decades in power.
Thus, instead of focusing on the discussions at conference, the country has to contend with the bootlicking and questioning how a 94-year-old person will run for presidency in two years’ time.