Why Chinamasa must go

via Why Chinamasa must go – DailyNews Live  16 MARCH 2014 

Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa’s lack of depth on economic issues has exposed him as the weakest link in reviving the country’s troubled economy.

Notwithstanding his prowess in the legal fraternity, the lawyer-cum-politician lacks the vital economics know-how to navigate the murky waters of macro and micro economics necessary to steer this country forward.

Unlike his predecessor Tendai Biti — also a lawyer by profession — who stabilised the economy when he took office in 2009 and brought inflation to manageable levels, Chinamasa is presiding over an economy that risks sliding into deflation.

Despite Zimbabwe’s year-on-year inflation quickening by eight basis points from 0,33 percent in December 2013 to settle at 0,41 percent in January 2014, the marginal increase in January, the inflation rate trend is likely to revert to a downward trajectory as aggregate demand continues to weaken.

According to the Consumer Council of Zimbabwe (CCZ), the consumer basket for a family of six decreased by 0,29 percent to $559,93 in February 2014.

Although he faces the unenviable task of proffering solutions amid a desperate need for an economic bail out, Chinamasa’s maiden budgetary statement last December failed to breathe life into the faltering economy.

The 2014 Budget statement has, at best, been described by economic experts as just a statement — with no clear direction the economy is expected to take.

With the country staring a massive de-industrialisation, it was expected the Finance ministry would come up with measures to stimulate production by either increasing tariffs on selected imported products or injecting fresh capital into industry.

Instead of channelling the little resources the country has to critical areas such as agriculture, manufacturing, mining and education, in his wisdom (or lack of it), Chinamasa poured much of Zimbabwe’s scarce revenue into state security and defence.

Companies are closing down daily and more are expected to shut down this year due to lack of cheap credit lines and declining capacity utilisation, yet no word has come from the minister — in a yet clear example of how clueless he is in steadying the sinking ship.

Zimbabwe’s economic growth potential continues to reel under intense pressure with indications that retrenchment numbers are continuing to soar.

Last year alone, approximately 9 617 jobs were lost, according to the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions.

Earlier statistics from the Employers Confederation of Zimbabwe show that job losses  amounted to 3 060. The Retrenchment Board cited low capacity utilisation, low product demand, obsolete machinery susceptible to frequent breakdowns, lack of working capital and raw materials as some of the factors triggering retrenchments.

Despite all these indicators of economic meltdown, Chinamasa has failed to attract a single cent either from donors, international money lenders or other countries.

In December, he returned home empty-handed from Washington after being denied funding by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), whose team is in Zimbabwe this week to review the government’s economic policies.

Early this year, his trip to China also yielded nothing.

Chinamasa is supposed to be the face of economic prosperity but analysts argue that he cannot even run a rural bottle store, let alone an economy on its knees like Zimbabwe’s.

The prevailing economic environment is not necessarily conducive for doing business and Chinamasa’s shortcomings are making it worse.

The Mugabe-led administration has over the past 33 years presided over the socio-political economic malaise that has besieged the country.

Civil servants, who make the bulk of the country’s formally-employed staff, continue to live in abject poverty after Chinamasa failed to avail funds to award them a salary increment.

Actually, they were awarded an increment only on their payslips but the new salaries are not reflecting in their bank accounts.



  • comment-avatar
    Roving Ambassador 8 years ago

    Zanu ,you going down.

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    Ndebvu Mukomichi 8 years ago

    Lopsided Praise for Mr Wananchi is No Way Back to Govt!

    Here are bete muBiti’s Good Policies:

    1. Land Reclamtion Programme: Underfunding Agriculture so as to derail the land reclamation programme and please his masters.

    2. Fear and Intimidation: Speaking ill of the country’s financial position- saying that there was only $217 left in the country’s account, in the hope of causing political unrest.

    3. Funding for Elections: Witholding some $100m of donor funds from Byo and other towns ostensibly to fund the referndum and elections- and then turning around to say that there was no money for elections. His hope was to prolong his stay in govt and delay the inevitable electoral bloody nose that he and his party later got at the hands of ZPF.

    By comparison- minister Chinamasa’s policies have attracted several strategic development projects in the power sector- which are heralding the way to a better Zim for all!

    Yes, maybe he was the best minista for machinja but not in Zimbos’ interests!

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      Mseyamwa 8 years ago

      1. And now agriculture is well funded – if not Chinamasa is selling the land like Biti.
      2. And now Chinamasa is telling us of all the billions the country has and instilling stability especially after the windfall from his US and Chinese trips
      3. And that 100million was such a lot of money it could be given to Bulawayo and more be found to run the referendum and elections and revive the entire economy
      No other country on earth runs an economy on a 3-4 billion budget. It’s just too small for 13 million people and 20 something ministries, and fading parastatals, and to fund all the government corruption. There just isn’t enough money to go around. There has not been for a long time and a huge policy shift is required that appreciates business more than it does now.

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      You know what Ndebvu I hated that GNU and do you know why. Because by rights MT should have been President and the MDC in government and as far as I was concerned Mbeki used that very violent and painful time to force MDC into a relationship with ZPF that should have never, by rights, made it back into government. Do you honestly think God forgets all these things and sweeps our sin under a dirty mat? Truly I hate the way us Zimbabweans justify our dirty deeds. no wonder we are under judgment. MT was the peoples choice and the MDC won the most seats. ZPF can go about bragging that they trounced the MDC in 2013 but when the hell fires of judgment come they would freely give up every ill-gotten vote for just one drop of water. I am sick of our sin. I see the spirit of death all over Zimbabwe and all you can do is down Biti who made every effort to get Zimbabwe up and running again. No man is perfect but by golly we have had enough of the current lot. No repentance! No restoration!

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      Parangeta 8 years ago

      What a disjointed, asinine and uneducated comment.

      Where did this person spend his time, obviously not in any school!

      Underfunding agriculture inputs to those not azz-licking,

      There is not even $217 in Zimbabwe’s account, we are overdrawn fool!

      Funding for elections all went to Nikuv, or were you on another planet at the time idiot!

      Get a life and stop smelling like mugarbage!

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    Ruramai 8 years ago

    I would argue the weakest link in reviving the troubled economy is Mugabe surely. What leadership has he provided?

    • comment-avatar
      Parangeta 8 years ago

      Troubled economy?

      What economy?

      The “Banana Republic of Zimbabwe”!

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    John Thomas 8 years ago

    Chinamasa must step down because he is a criminal. This has nothing to do with his performance as minister as finance. There the guilty who walk free and the innocent who are imprisoned because of him.

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      Exactly. With Moyo crying that Chinamasa is doing such a good job, Moyo should go the same way, another proven crook ask the South Africans and Kenyans

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      John Steele 8 years ago


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    Make me Min of Finance. I’ve got a bit of arc welding experience, that should be good enough?

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      roving ambassador. 8 years ago

      good enough man, at least you can lock in all the financial leakages.

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      Parangeta 8 years ago

      Jake, better still, use your arc welder to weld shut Zimbabwe’s Reserve Bank doors and safe, against Mugabe, ‘China-my-master’ and ZANU-PF!

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    damba 8 years ago

    Chinamasa is just a messenger.Don’t shoot the messenger GO for the sender-lol

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    Doctor Do more 8 years ago

    If you don’t shoot the messenger, the sad messages will keep coming. The Chinese think its best to shoot the bearer of sad news and his messages, just to stop the madness.