Mphoko refuses to leave hotel

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Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko

VICE-PRESIDENT Phelekezela Mphoko has reportedly refused to move into his State-acquired mansion in Harare’s leafy Grange suburb vowing to continue staying in an upmarket city hotel at taxpayers’ expense, amid claims he was not happy with renovations made to the house.

by XOLISANI NCUBE

Mphoko
Mphoko

According to government insiders, Mphoko was reportedly demanding more changes to the house to ensure it meets “his stature”, but the State was struggling to fund the required improvements due to a depleted revenue base.

The Vice-President’s house was bought by government at a cost of $3,5 million, but the renovation costs were not readily available yesterday.

“The house is ready for occupation, but the VP wants more improvements done. We really don’t understand what he wants the Ministry of Public Works and National Housing to do, but we have done our best to it. We don’t know what more needs to be done,” a senior government official, who requested not to be named, said.

Mphoko has clocked over 550 days in a five-star Harare hotel, where he checked in soon after his appointment as Vice-President in December 2014 — gobbling huge sums of taxpayers’ money in accommodation and meal costs.

Local Government permanent secretary, George Mlilo, yesterday said his ministry was no longer involved in the issue, as the matter had been handed over to the Presidency.

“That issue is being handled by the VP’s Office and the Office of the President. We no longer have any business with it,” he said.

Director of State residences in President Robert Mugabe’s Office, Innocent Tizora, refused to comment on the matter.

“Who is this? Yes, how can I help you,” a cordial Tizora said.

But when the NewsDay reporter identified himself, Tizora angrily said: “What do you want, nxa,” before terminating the call.

Several attempts to get a comment from Mphoko himself were fruitless as his phone was busy, while Minister of State in his Office, Thabetha Kanengoni-Malinga was not picking her calls.

Mphoko, a career diplomat who served in various countries, landed the Vice-Presidency in December 2014 following the ouster of then Vice-President Joice Mujuru from both government and Zanu PF.

He was appointed co-Vice-President together with Emmerson Mnangagwa, who is staying in his government-issued house.

Since Mphoko had no government accommodation in the capital, he was booked into the presidential suite at Rainbow Towers Hotel where he has now clocked 18 months.

The presidential suite, located on the 17th Floor, costs $403 inclusive of bed and breakfast for two per day, while lunch and dinner cost $15 each.

Mphoko is reportedly staying with his grandchild in the suite, which significantly increases the cost.

The hotel charges an additional $130 for an extra bedroom in the same suite for two children and Mphoko’s aides.

Early last year, Mphoko’s wife, Laurinda, reportedly rejected three houses, among them a mansion in Ballantyne Park worth $3 million, claiming it was too small for a person of the VP’s stature.

The Mphokos also refused to move into the house once occupied by the late Vice-President Joseph Msika in Mandara, saying they wanted a house of their own.

Mphoko’s demand for an upmarket house is in direct contrast with his predecessor, the late Vice-President John Nkomo, who lived in a modest double-storey government house in Milton Park. Government is, according to the Constitution, obliged to provide State accommodation to Vice-Presidents, who are also entitled to buy the properties at market value when they leave office.

38 COMMENTS

  1. The problem with this issue is that no one knows the type of agreement this VP hammered out with the President. Remember he is now left with only a year in office and i am not sure if it is going to make a diffference now as he has milked the system big time. They were suppose to be demostrations at the hotel the first few months he overstayed but people only woke up when it was too late.

    • Should I cry of laugh at this guy? Ko VaMugabe havazvioniwo here izvi? Ko VaMnangwa vakati no to corruption last week veduwee?

  2. Nxaaaa at a time when the general civil servants are not bieng paid…. were the government has failed to provide basics that a government should provide its people …. does he think he is a v.p in the states or Britain. .. ngaabude
    Lets all go there and march ikoko

  3. That is always the case when a leader’s value system is based on preserving foreign interests at the expense of African interests. It is not only him by the way, Kasukuwere has his his mansion, Chombo, the list is endless. These are the results of African leaders worshiping a white man.

  4. Let him finish his term there and thereafter he will find himself with nowhere to stay, he will go back to Makokoba

  5. Forgive the mentally redundant Mboko. He is doing just what he was employed to do: being a very big boot licker to be used for only stupid erands. He lacks brains and such stupid people are what Mugabe wants to have around him. He is very much insensitive to say the least. He must be taken to Engutsheni for examination and upkeep. Its a pity we have that useless sellout as a VP. One day he will regret.

  6. HEY DONT TELL ME THIS DUDE IS STILL STAYING AT THE HOTEL. I THOUGHT OTHERWISE. zVAKAOMA. ZIMBABWE IS SO TOLERATING. HOW MANY THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS HAVE BEEN SPENT SO FAR AND YET NO SALARIES FOR CIVIL SERVANTS, NO PAYMENTS FOR DOCTORS SO THE ORDINARY STREET PERSON CAN BE TREATED. KO MUNOMUITEI? HAPANA.

  7. This is just an example of why we are in this economic mess. Our so called British “Colonialists” that the govt keeps lambasting for one thing or another, hold their politicians accountable (from MP’s right up to 10 Downing Street) for unjustified expenses claimed. And here we are with a bleeding economy and our politicians care only for themselves. So while you and I cannot even import a packet of Lays crisps come 1 July (with our own money) more has to spent on renovations to the VP’s house. With locally purchased trimmings? I think not. In the meantime the tax payer has to carry the cost of his hotel accommodation. I just hope the hotel actually get paid!

    • The hotel would be very lucky if they get one red cent from this government. Of course they suffer twice in that they are losing valuable clients who could have been using the suite…and that is the REAL BAD NEWS.

  8. In the first place there is no need really to have 2 vice presidents in such a small poor country. A single vice president should be appointed by merit regardless of tribe. Zimbabwe is not the only country in the world with a multi-tribe society & if other countries can do it then so can we

  9. mboko imboko that man is dull.haazivi zvanoita.at the launch of veld fires in Mazowe last year he was given 15 bicycles to give to anyone who was present.but the greedy ,dull,shory ,pump,scruffy man chose to go with the bicycles nxaaa big looter.

  10. Unfortunately Mphoko has no shame.
    This is a country where lots of people don’t have decent accommodation with lots of families sharing rooms and yet he wants to leave in a mansion at tax payers expense. These are the people who say its governments’ money not knowing that government gets its money from people.
    This guy was not voted by anybody, he was imposed on the people by Mugabe.

  11. He was offered state house in Bulawayo,which is a mansion ,tho he liked it he prefered it to be built for him in Harare.He said he culdnt live in Bulawayo.At $3,5m ,state culd have bot a stand for less than $100,000 n building a house of his choice perhaps 500,000.This wuld have been much cheaper.But yu never know ,bcoz Zuma demanded additions costing much more.
    Bulawayo is ideal for vp whr he wuld live wth his pple.He is vp from zapu of matebeleland.

  12. Dear VP Mphoko

    We in ZANU (PF) are deliiberately not finishing your house because when your term ends in 18 months to come you will not give us a headache like Tsvangirai whom we have failed to evict from the house. You won’t bother us trying to buy the Hotel where you are staying.

    Yours sincerely

    G40

  13. Now that this stupid mboko matter has been handed over to robert mugabe, are we really going to get anything tangible from HE considering that he too doesn’t care about us the suffering taxpayers. We keep our ears to the ground

  14. #Thisflag your next stop, lets have a picket at rainbow towers against him until he leaves the hotel… why should he keep staying in the hotel when everyone else is suffering ….whats so special about this *******************!!!

  15. 550 days multply by 403 a day its hw much Nw they say there is no money to pay soldiers no money to pay dictors no money to pay teachers that’s nonsense Mpoko I dnt think kuti ane people at heart inyaya yekuti its G40 that’s why is on safe side Team Ngwena panyanga!!!

  16. The whole leadership should go. They know sabout mboko but no one is saying anything. The mouth that is eating does not speak

    Zaze

  17. The bible says wakazviita ndikaramba ndinyerere ukafunga kuti ini newe takafanana………..time will tell. Hez setting a bomb for himself. Chaunodyara ndicho chaunokohwa.

  18. VP Mboko arinane anogara muhotel, than Matibili Mugabe anogara mundege. Ask air zim, kana muchiti ndinonyepa!!

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  19. Those who had good foresight used to advise Zimbabweans in the 70s, never to let this Zanu team in office. We did rubbished the advice and hated them To the last hair. Now we are deep in it no going back. It’s not only this Mboko issue, it’s the whole system. They don’t have the nation at heart as they shout out loud. Tati tadii.

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