The are scheduled for General Election in September 2018. This has the new President Emmerson Mnangagwa after the ousting of 37 years of Robert Mugabe in November 2017. The new Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) government, which is installed with help of the army and has initial ministries run by important military leaders. Clearly, they are gearing up to secure their livelihood and their future.
So over the weekend there are reports that the Crocodile is planning to do what the Goblin used to do. Pay off the cultural leaders and tribal chiefs of the Republic. Since they have asked for the same benefits as the Cabinet Ministers and Principals Secretaries, who are all getting posh-cars for their service and being in government. The same sort of corrupt activity is something the chiefs wants too. Therefore, this January 2018, shows that ZANU-PF is still the same. Just another figurehead. ED is acting just like Mugabe did. Nothing changes, except the for the name of the Presidency. The act of giving away 280 posh cars is something good old Bob would have done if he still was in power.
In January 2018:
“The President assured all other chiefs that they will get their cars before this year’s harmonised elections. “There are 52 cars here today. 26 more will arrive next week and so on. All of you will get their cars before elections but today we will distribute 48 cars, six cars per province,” said Cde Mnangagwa” (…) “I am the one who invited you to this conference. I know that it was supposed to be me visiting each one of you but I realised that you are 280 and if I had to meet one of you every week, it would take me three years to complete. I know that you might be aware of what has happened to our country but I felt it was proper for me to officially brief you on the situation. Yes I am now the new President of Zimbabwe after former President [Robert] Mugabe resigned on 21 November 2017, paving way for my swearing in on 24 November,” he said.” (ZBC, 2018)
That is how ED has done it. Now we can see how Bob did it in his day. This is just in recent years. Not even digging deep into the scandals and the cars that has been given away. Here is some reports from 2012 and 2014. That shows what happen this weekend. Could easily happen in the past. Therefore, ED doesn’t do anything different from what Bob did in his day. That should concern Zimbabweans, who thought ED would bring something new, sorry brother, he brings more of the same.
In July 2012:
“As if taking a cue from cabinet ministers, the force recently purchased the 2012 models of top of the range vehicles like the BMW 328i series saloon cars, Range Rover Sports, Nissan Navara LE double cabs to latest Ford Ranger LXT and double cab Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs) for senior officers. The delivery of vehicles comes hard on the heels of cabinet’s outrageous splash of over US$20 million for the purchase of Mercedes Benz E280s for ministers, Land Rover Discovery 4 TDis for deputy ministers, and Jeep Cherokees and Range Rovers for permanent secretaries late last year” (…) “Other senior civil servants like principal directors and directors now drive the latest Isuzu KB300Dtec double cabs while parliamentarians have received either Isuzu 300Dtec or Mazda BT50 double cabs. The police took delivery of the vehicles in the last six weeks but the cars have remained out of the public eye since they are unmarked and have no registration plates. The Zimbabwe Independent saw the new fleet parked at the designated senior officers’ parking bays at Police General Headquarters in Harare. Sources revealed that the saloon cars and SUVs were bought for senior officers from the rank of Senior Assistant Commissioner (SAC) to Commissioners and the Commissioner-General” (Zimbabwe Independent, 2012).
In December 2012:
“The government is set to spend almost $9 million on an unbudgeted traditional chiefs’ vehicle scheme after a Parliamentary portfolio committee recommended that each of them receive $35 000 instead of $18 000 to buy vehicles. The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Local Government recommended that the 250 traditional chiefs should be allocated $35 000 each to procure vehicles of their choice, as their terms of office were much longer than those of MPs” (Zimbabwe Situation, 2012).
In October 2014:
“Harare – President Robert Mugabe’s broke government is set to splash $ 11 million on off-road vehicles to appease the increasingly vocal chiefs who want to be feted like kings” (…) “On Tuesday, Finance Minster Patrick Chinamasa told Parliament that Treasury was seized with the cheifs’ request off-roader vehicles – 280 Ford Rangers – whose price averages $50,000 at local dealership” (Zvauya, 2014).
So as in 2012 and 2014, that the government are giving traditional chiefs cars for millions of US Dollars. They are doing the same in 2018. Just that its ED instead of Bob doing so. There is no difference in it and the reason behind it. The Traditional Chiefs are getting it months in advance of coming election. To make sure their loyalty to ZANU-PF is still there and taken care off. There is no gifts without a pink slip. The chiefs are getting it, because then they are in the debt of the ruling party. ED knows this and the chiefs knows this. Bob knew that too, when he was doing similar and promising similar gifts to them.
The are promises to be made and also policy changes, but this fit the ordinary pattern of Bob. Only under the new flagship sponsored also by the military leadership who toppled him. ED should be careful, but with this act during the weekend. He was just acting in the same way as Bob. For all the matters of the Traditional Chiefs, he could be Bob. If they get cars from ED or Bob is the same. They are still payed off and paid for loyalty. Not for service delivery, but for staying loyal to the ZANU-PF and the ruling regime as it is. Peace.
Zimbabwe Broadcasting Company (ZBC) – ‘Chiefs receive cars’ (13.01.2017) link: http://www.zbc.co.zw/?p=71486
Zimbabwe Situation – ‘Chiefs cars to gobble $9 million’ (18.12.2012) link: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_w_chiefs-cars-to-gobble-9-million-newsday-zimbabwe/
Zimbabwe Independent – ‘ZRP splashes on luxury cars’ (07.06.2012) link: https://www.theindependent.co.zw/2012/06/07/zrp-splashes-on-luxury-cars/
Zvauya, Chengetai – ‘Govt to splash $11m on chiefs’ vehicles’ (04.10.2014) link: https://www.dailynews.co.zw/articles/2014/10/04/govt-to-splash-11m-on-chiefs-vehicles