Ministers, MPs’ cars suspended

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government yesterday suspended plans to buy new vehicles for the new Cabinet ministers and Members of Parliament and channelled the money towards fighting the cholera epidemic, which has claimed 32 lives and infected over 7 000 people in and outside Harare in the past two weeks.

BY OBEY MANAYITI

Finance minister Mthuli Ncube, who yesterday launched a health crowd-funding campaign to raise almost $64 million to fight the cholera outbreak, confirmed the new austerity measures, saying government had decided to prioritise citizens’ health above bureaucrats’ luxury perks.

“That is exactly what we have done. This $15 million that the government has paid is exactly that. We have had to suspend certain things to make sure that we deal with this endemic immediately. That is exactly what we have done,” Ncube told journalists at the health crowdfund launch.

“Of course, there is still a gap, but it is not an immediate gap (but), it’s a long-term gap in the sense that we need further investment in the (health) sector. For that again there will be a further outlay of government resources plus resources from partners and we are already talking to them about contributing to the $35 million long-term funding.”

Cabinet ministers are entitled to top-of-the-range Mercedes-Benz sedans, Range Rovers and Toyota Land Cruisers.
Deputy ministers are entitled to the

latest all-terrain Mazda BT50s as well as Mercedes-Benz sedans.

Mnangagwa’s government has 20 Cabinet ministers, 13 deputies, 10 Provincial Affairs ministers and two Ministers of State in Vice-Presidents Constantino Chiwenga and Kembo Mohadi’s offices.

Government is expected to shell out over $20 million to buy new vehicles for the 350 legislators.

Ncube defended his decision to crowdfund for the health sector, saying the practice was common in most developed countries, and assured contributors that their money would be properly accounted for.

He said more needed to be done in terms of creating immediate and long-term solutions to the cholera scourge.
The new Treasury boss said they had since raised $29 million in pledges, with government contributing about
$15,7 million towards the cause.

Several corporates donated various amounts and materials to fight cholera, among them Econet Wireless Zimbabwe, National Foods, OK Zimbabwe, Delta Corporation, Spar Zimbabwe, Zimplats, Ecobank, Environmental Management Agency, Southern Region Trading, Rainbow Tourism Group, Grain Millers Association, Premier Service Medical Investments, Pharmaceuticals Society and TelOne, among others.

Ncube said his Health counterpart Obadiah Moyo had assured him that enough measures had been put in place to curb further spread of the “medieval” waterborne disease, with the number of new infections sharply dropping from about 500 to 100 per day.

Health deputy minister John Mangwiro said some of the measures include discouraging handshakes.

“We need to change our habits. I know it’s very rude when someone extends their hand and you don’t shake them, it might be very unfair,” he said.

“Therefore, we have changed the way we greet so that we don’t really clutch each other’s hand.”

23 Comments

  1. fake cars were bought they are just delaying collection only

  2. True, we are not idiots, the cars for cabinet were bought and stashed just before the elections, just like ED’s latest Mercedes Benz and the cars for chiefs

  3. kkkk dzichatengwa mota tavaraiwa zvedu

  4. Why top of the range vehicles? Can’t we go the Magufuli way and buy them Honda Fit and Toyota Corollas? Inaccessible roads is not an excuse. They must rehabilitate the roads and make them accessible by the Toyota Vitzs and Mazda Demios.

    1. my sentiments too…. We really need to “magufulise” our nation!!!

    2. kkkkk good suggestion why top of the range?

    3. well said

  5. @joseph. i totally agree with you. if they had such small cars, then they would feel the pain of loosing tires and wheel reams to pot holes. they would get off they back sides and do something about not only the roads but all other infrastructure, including our hospitals and schools.

  6. Entitled, my foot! Those people should get what the populace give them. Since they’ve had the all terrain vehicles in the past governments nothing has been delivered in terms of development, if anything, we are developing backwards into the medieval times judging by the “medieval water borne disease. Once upon a time David Parirenyatwa was “entitled” to those vehicles, but did it help him deliver anything in the health sector? We are in this cholera quagmire because of them idiots. Cars have nothing to do with one’s competence in the office. Let the lot walk if they can and stop wasting our money. And you Mthuli Ncube, fighting cholera is what that money is for, not buying yourselves vehicles.Let that sink into your thick heads.

  7. MPs and cabinet ministers should not be given cars, they should buy their own. There should be pool cars for ministers to use on official duties but they must use their own vehicles when going home or on private use, as in the UK and other democratic countries.

  8. Why should MPs get vehicles in the first place?

    Why should we be taxed to cater for these people?

    SONA events….. MPs were booked into hotels spending a max of 120.00 bed and breakfast plus dinner, lunch, fuel, allowances and some chose to boycott the proceedings.

    and now they are lobbying for a 6k salary

  9. ncube kusatenga mota haisi solution taurira zanu chokwadi pasina izvozvo taviga misoro muvhu

    1. wko ndiwo unoyenda muvhu..hindava usina kukwana iwe

  10. Suspension is not enough. The government must scrap the scheme or atleast one vehicle per goverment minister and MP

  11. It’s a misplaced tradition to buy 2 new top-of-the range cars for ministers each time there is a new cabinet . It has to be stopped. However, I am glad that minister ncube deferred the purchase of the vehicles . He , should do what all previous ministers to that portfolio failed to do. This includes the garrulous Biti. He was quick to buy cruisers, Benzes ,& range rovers for him & his colleagues before he could allocate any resources for national projects. Well done Minister Ncube but please go ahead and propose the scrapping away of these benefits until our economy rebounds

  12. It’s a misplaced tradition to buy 2 new top-of-the range cars for ministers each time there is a new cabinet . It has to be stopped. However, I am glad that minister ncube deferred the purchase of the vehicles . He , should do what all previous ministers to that portfolio failed to do. This includes the garrulous Biti. He was quick to buy cruisers, Benzes ,& range rovers for him & his colleagues before he could allocate any resources for national projects. Well done Minister Ncube but please go ahead and propose the scrapping away of these benefits until our economy rebounds

  13. matsotsi aya. ED and his crew know how to play mind games they can announce the suspension of the purchase of the vehicles for ministers but the truth is the day ED s car was bought is the day all the other cars were bought havana vanhu pamoyo ava iMBAVHA, MBAVHA MBAVHA CHTE

  14. when you voted them into power you did not know there are pecs attached. your complains are baseless, you seem to be jealous that’s all.

    1. nerorists political ideology is based on jealousy.

  15. Woolen hat over our eyes!…kkkkkkk

  16. Its high time our President like his counter part in Tanzania should start flying economy.Our financial situation is tough as a nation. Ncube these ministers can drive cheap cars like vitz or Honda fits. This is the what we want as Zimbabweans.

  17. Gata Mukwidzausinamateru

    Comment…Kana muchiri vatongi tongayi. Asi kana mave vatungamiri, ayiwa, tungamirirayi. Chokwadi chinongo buda chete. Zvinonzi rinemanyanga hariputirwika.

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