FINANCE minister Tendai Biti on Wednesday said the 2013 National Budget projections could be met if the anticipated harmonised elections scheduled for next year were held in a free and fair environment, devoid of violence.
REPORT BY STEPHEN CHADENGA OWN CORRESPONDENT
Biti, who was speaking at a consultative budget meeting in Gweru, said if budget allocations indicated that the election should be held in one day, then there was need to stick to that. He said President Robert Mugabe’s message of peace and tolerance, which he highlighted at the opening of the Second All-Stakeholders’ Conference for a new constitution on Monday, ought to be taken seriously.
“There is going to be an election in 2013 and probably a referendum on the draft constitution. If we allocate funds for the plebiscite in the budget and we say elections should he held in one day, then it should be one day so that we don’t disturb the flow of the budget. To achieve economic stability and make sure that our budgetary projections are met, there is need to move away from predatory politics,” Biti said.
“To achieve the 7,4% growth rate there is need to minimise downward risks like political dislocation. If we continue to cannibalise each other, that growth rate can be minus 2,2% and that is why we want a one-day peaceful election.”