HomeLocal NewsMatabeleland marginalisation a myth - Mathema

Matabeleland marginalisation a myth – Mathema

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Zanu PF politburo member and Bulawayo Resident minister Cain Mathema yesterday dismissed as untrue and baseless, concerns by many people from Matabeleland that the region was marginalised.

He also attacked Industry and Commerce minister Welshman Ncube and Finance minister Tendai Biti, accusing them of delaying the release of the much-awaited $40 million package for distressed Bulawayo companies.

He said the issue of marginalisation was a tool used by the “enemy” fanning tribalism to create mayhem in the Matabeleland region.

“These days, comrades, the enemy has been singing and dancing about the marginalisation of Matabeleland, even to the extent of saying Shona people are taking companies away from Bulawayo to Harare.

“Personally, I know of no company owned by Shona people that has been relocated to Harare or elsewhere from Bulawayo. I know no company at all that has been taken from Harare to Bulawayo or from any other part of Matabeleland, “ Mathema said.

He, however, confirmed he was aware that at least 87 companies were closed in Bulawayo leaving 20 000 people jobless, but said “these companies did not go to Harare”.

Mathema was addressing participants at the 12th Zanu PF annual people’s conference at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair grounds in Bulawayo yesterday.

Getting back to the issue of $40 million, he said: “Biti and Ncube are playing games with the $40 million.”

Zanu PF and the two MDC formations have been engaged in a tug-of-war over the fund with each of them trying to use it to gain political mileage ahead of possible elections next year.

“As a result, Bulawayo businesses and citizens do not know whether indeed the funds are there or not and whether the businesses qualify to access the funds. But certainly, the micro, small to medium enterprises, old and new, do not qualify if we go by what the Press has been saying.

“The same old companies owned by the same owners in Rhodesia qualify as the conditions for accessing the funds are still of Rhodesia where black people did not have title deeds for their houses. In Bulawayo 70% of home owners have no title deeds for their houses.

“Comrades, Bulawayo wants that money! Bulawayo demands that money. That money came about because Bulawayo businesses, workers, citizens and the Governor and Resident Minister of Bulawayo made suggestions up to the President (Robert Mugabe) about the economy of Bulawayo. We even offered solutions which included workers taking over the closed companies and those that were operating at very low levels. For instance, workers at Cotton Printers and Security Mills have always wanted to take over these two companies.”

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