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CDF to be protected from abuse

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FINANCE minister Tendai Biti said the government was working out measures to protect the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) from abuse by members of Parliament.
Report by Staff Reporter

Biti said: “I don’t know where reports that there will be no more CDF funds are coming from. What we want to do as the government is to come up with an Act of Parliament that protects the CDFs and strengthens them.”

The minister was speaking in an interview with NewsDay at the Government Work Programme Budget consultative meeting on Monday.
He said the CDF was his brainchild which received government support and could not be abandoned.

Biti blasted the State Procurement Board (SPB), describing it as a “creature that needed reform. If ever there is a creature that is making the government lose money, it is the State Procurement Board.  It is awarding tenders at ridiculous prices and that makes the issue of the SPB reform a very important matter.”

Biti, who is also MDC-T secretary-general, said lack of production was not doing the country’s economy any good as Zimbabwe was buying goods from other countries instead of manufacturing them.

“What we are doing is, we are killing a rat and consuming an elephant.  For every dollar into the country, $3 is going out. If you look at the shirts the Prime Minister and Defence minister (Emmerson) Mnangagwa are wearing they are written ‘Made in China’. David Whitehead is now a museum and teachers will soon be taking children there and say ‘there was once a company that used to produce the best of towels’,” he said.

On foreign  and local banks failing to assist locals, Biti said : “That is ‘igwe’ banking, I think bankers are watching too much of African movies. The banks are not supporting one another. Foreign banks are the worst, but unfortunately, the matter is before Cabinet and I can’t say more.”

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