On Monday we warned that there was nothing to be excited in President Robert Mugabe’s planned reshuffle and we feel vindicated now, as the President simply moved around the same old faces, with literally nothing new to offer.
Instead of bringing in new blood, Mugabe returned the old tired faces, who have not inspired in their previous portfolios and we wonder why he thinks they will be stars in their new ministries.
To add insult to injury, Mugabe literally created two more ministries – the Cybersecurity ministry under Patrick Chinamasa and the National Scholarships ministry to be headed by Christopher Mushohwe.
There was absolutely no need for the two ministries and they are an added burden on an already handicapped Treasury.
Just moving people around is not enough and in the circumstances, Mugabe must have looked for the best brains to the run the ministries.
New Finance minister Ignatius Chombo has been around the block for a while and Zimbabweans are hard-pressed to point out any of his successes either as Higher Education, Local Government or Home Affairs minister and it boggles the mind why he has been given the Treasury keys.
New Public Service minister Patrick Zhuwao has also not been a beacon of excellence in his previous role, as he infamously tried to railroad the indigenisation laws with little regard for the economy.
Mugabe had to rap him on the knuckles over that fiasco, which continues to hang over the country like the sword of Damocles and we wonder what he has done to deserve this new post.
The President’s reshuffle is as uninspiring as it is worrying, as all his ministers have been there and supervised the country’s collapse.
The new ministers lack the “wow factor”, they do not raise hope and above all point to stagnation and lack of fresh ideas. What Zimbabwe is desperate for is a regenerated and re-energised Cabinet, but instead, Mugabe gives a host of has-beens, who are not likely to change anything.
We have spoken ad nauseam about the need to bring in technocrats and professionals, who have the know-how and are unencumbered by politics and patronage.
Tragically, our calls and the cries of many Zimbabweans are ignored, as the ruling elite are only concerned about self-preservation and populism.
Zimbabwe is on the precipice and only inspired leaders can bring the country back from the brink, however, with this new Cabinet, we have very little confidence that there can be any sort of turnaround.