MPs extort govt, get luxury cars

MEMBERS of Parliament yesterday arm-twisted Finance minister Mthuli Ncube into raising their budgetary allocation by 44% and demanded the latest 4×4 luxury Toyota Land Cruisers, among other perks, despite the government implementing austerity measures to contain its runaway spending.

BY VENERANDA LANGA

Parliament bid for $163 million in the 2019 budget, but was allocated $101 million. Yesterday, MPs from across the political divide threatened that they would not pass Ncube’s 2019 National Budget unless they got things their way.

After haggling, the MPs eventually settled for $145 million after they demanded that their welfare be improved to equal that of members of the Executive and the Judiciary. They also want Parliament to be equipped with state-of-the-art gyms, vehicles, computers, and other such luxuries.

In his Austerity for Prosperity budget, Ncube sought to cap government borrowing, cut spending on flagship projects as command agriculture, end all quasi-fiscal expenditure and limit borrowing from the central bank to 5% of the prior year’s revenue.

He also cut salaries for the President and senior government officials by 5% and will fire the nearly 4 000 “youth officers” by year-end. Ncube also cut the amount of bonuses paid to civil servants, but the wage bill is still expected to go up by 5% to $4,050 billion in 2019, constituting 61% of total revenue from 73% this year.

The budget, however, piled the weight of austerity and more taxes on the ordinary citizen, who, in addition to the 2% tax on all electronic transactions, will also pay more in excise duty for fuel and cigarettes, while imports of vehicles and other goods is now levied in foreign currency.

After getting their demands met, the MPs ignored the debate on the vote of the Public Service Commission, which takes care of the country’s impoverished civil servants, including teachers and
doctors, despite doctors being on strike and teachers threatening one.

Norton MP Temba Mliswa (independent), who was instrumental in canvassing MPs to demand good perks, said: “MPs are handicapped and we are talking of only one car, a Land Cruiser, which is the only car good enough for MPs to do their work because the Mazdas and Toyotas we get are not good enough.”

Mliswa said MPs were looked down upon because they did not even have iPads, adding that the $75 per diem was a pittance, and needed to be reviewed. Mliswa said the diet of MPs, where they eat a one course meal with a banana or apple for desert, was not proper as other Parliaments had more savoury desserts like trifles and ice cream.

“MPs must have world-class gyms and recreational facilities to play golf. MPs must also be given diplomatic passports,” Mliswa said.

Mbizo MP Settlement Chikwinya (MDC Alliance) said Parliament was so underfunded to the extent that it relied on development partners to finance the work of its committees. He added there was need to finance constituency information offices for MPs, and employ more staff in Parliament to assist in research and committee businesses.

Zanu PF’s Goodlucky Kwaramba said MPs were impoverished as the Ford Ranger vehicles they were given last time were already broken down.

Chegutu West MP Dextor Nduna (Zanu PF) said MPs were given fuel coupons in a humiliating manner.

Wedza North MP David Musabayana (Zanu PF) said MPs were the poorer cousins of the Executive and Judiciary, to the extent that they begged for fuel coupons at ministers’ offices for resale, as well as soliciting for allowances and gifts from organisations that fund parliamentary trips and committees.

Ncube promised that MPs would comparatively get their vehicles, but said the agreed model was a Toyota Hilux twin cab vehicle.

Ncube said he would also look at the issue of pensions for MPs who have served for a term, and also suggested to increase Parliament’s budget from $101 million to $120 million.
But Binga North MP Prince Dubeko Sibanda (MDC Alliance) said it was not the duty of the Executive to appropriate finances, but Parliament, also adding legislators were not going to allow the budget to pass if it did not increase Parliament’s vote.

Sibanda said the $163 million that Parliament wanted did not even consider inflation.

“If the minister does not allocate Parliament what it requests, then he should have his 2019 budget passed elsewhere,” Sibanda said.

After the increase, there was jubilation in the House, with MPs from across the political divide hugging Ncube.

38 Comments

  1. this is totally wrong and this austerity talk is turning out to be pure crap

  2. Comment…Hypocrites, commercial sex workers, these mps. Let them block the budget as it is for the executive and parliament, chete. Mliswa leads and others join the chorus. Mdc-a mps were in attendance, because they have a vested interest in the budget albeit ‘boycotting’ its presentation, hypocrites.

  3. The Executive next term 2023 they will demand private jets so that business people cannot look down upon them.

  4. Are these MPs living in the same Zim we are, greed lot

  5. Now the monkeys we voted into office no longer want bananas and apples for dessert, they now want ice-creams and waffle; and, by the way, the $75,00 SITTING Allowance per SITTING is not enough. Our ungrateful monkeys want more!!!! So that they can entertain us with more drama and theatrics in Parliament.

  6. Judith Mutangirwa

    I’m totally gutted! Did we elect people to play golf & eat ice cream? You complain of fruit for desert in a nation where the majority is struggling to fix a single meal! Hypocrites! Shame on you

  7. its a pity Zimbabwe is led by such wolves. my country has gone to the dogs. woe my beloved Zimbabwe

  8. “…..was not proper as other Parliaments had more savoury desserts like trifles and ice cream.” ice cream SERIOUSLY!! This is another lot of bottom feeding leeches.

  9. Dear suffering fellow Zimbabweans. Let’s all come together constituency by constituency and move a vote of no confidence on these sitting MPs. Am serious!

  10. The beautiful ones are not yet born

    I am not surprised at all by this. This is the way of all politicians, especially the current crop. This is why people should stop voting for parties and start voting for people on merit. As long as we vote the way we do right now, this is exactly what we are asking for.

  11. josphat mugadzaweta

    zim parly was designed with professionals in mind that could come and contribute to how the country’s executive could properly run the country. in that vien it is not a full time job. those professionals were supposed to shore up their salaries with the parly stipends. after independence we saw the flocking into parly by slef-seeking accomplices and rent-seeking renegades like tedious kudzedzereka (chikomba), mandi chimene, chiontimba, blackman matamabanadzo and a lot more from the opposition. these now want to sponsor elegant life styles with stipend. please look for jobs kana kuti endai munorima.

    1. Well said @Josphat M…..rent seekers of the highest order!

  12. mukovhe wa tshilidzi

    a matter of selfish interest hapana ku representa vanhu apa

  13. I wish after this people will realize that the problem is not Zanu Pf but Zimbabweans at large. It doesn’t matter which party you elect into government,nothing will ever change. It’s high time people from across political inclinations come together and demonstrate against such disappointing behaviour from people we elected!!!

    1. mukovhe wa tshilidzi

      you are 75% correct

  14. Then it shows they are in Parliament for self-aggrandizement not for the interests of the people they represent. How different are they from the doctors who are smiling at patients dying just because Govt can’t afford to pay them in USD.

    1. Our MPs should take heed of President Mnangagwa’s calls on austerity measures to cut on Government expenditure. If MPs agree to increase their budget by US$44 million while hospitals have no drugs it becomes a cause for concern for the public. Arm twisting Minister Mthuli Ncube is not fair they must stick to policy.

  15. These guys must be serious.

  16. It’s so sad and painful that Zimbabwe is led by self centred, egotistic and greedy thieves. How can a sane MP want ice cream and trifles (whatever that is) for dessert, when the constituency they represent has hospitals and clinics without drugs even paracetamol? These people are now viewing politics as a very lucrative “industry” where these charlatans must get fat checks and perks. So civil servants do not matter as long as their demands are met? I knew it all along, MDC-A, ZANU-PF or whatever political party these people are the same. It’s all about themselves, nothing more, nothing less.

  17. MaMp eMdc ndoatanga tichitemba kuti acharamba mota vamiririre zvido zvevanhu zvino ivo ndovanotova pamberi kuda mota dzinodhura, apa they were saying they dont recognize ED but kana pava panezvemota vanoti President Ed vakahwinha, politics dzeZimbabwe, is accepting vehicles not endorsing ED, heee Mudzuri waindireiko ko panezvemota vanoindireiko

  18. What do you expect all politicans are the same.

  19. Important debating going…. Banana/Apples Vs Ice Cream/Truffles.

  20. this is disappointing so to say the least. we can not have the Country be held at ransom by these selfish and greedy individuals. busy crying for gyms, where they voted into office for body building? the same people have not even proven anything in terms of crafting policies that benefit their constituencies or anything related in that matter yet they already want to be rewarded with such luxurious packs. what happened to austerity measures?

  21. The behavior of the MP’s is a shocking disgrace which completely degrades their positions in society. It is abundantly clear all the MP’s are totally ignorant of their role and responsibilties to those who voted them into Parliament. To them it is all about themselves and to hell with the rest.
    What is about ‘the country being broke’ do these fools not understand ?

  22. A country without fuel and basic commodities and the people’s representatives are crying for a Land Cruiser, a car worth more than a bus.We need a Sankara at this juncture.

  23. Remedio Fernandes

    Iniquitous! The car must be “the latest …and luxury” model in order to perform their parliamentary duties?
    I concur with ‘Mwalimu’ and ‘The beautiful Ones Are Not Yet Born’ above.
    The Ford Rangers issued previously, (presumably 5 years ago?)are damaged. Poor maintenance and reckless driving? Such a car should be good for at least 10 years.
    Parliamentarians in other countries are on a better wicket according to Mliswa. Probably so, but are their citizens in the same dire straits as Zimbabweans. Where does the sacrifice begin to for good of the nation? Learn from Mandela.

  24. Don’t live your life from the theories of a politician.
    What can you expect from someone whose desire when elected
    Was to become better.thats politics

  25. We voted monkeys into parliament

  26. These is nothing here pertaining to the so called perks.In RSA, the perks for MPs are the same as those of high court judges. MPs mainly from rural ares require strong vehicles as tools for the trade.

  27. Enough of this Evil

    baboons masquarading as MPs. Giving the tittle Honourable to mere baboons.

  28. senzerepf@yahoo.com

    A congress of baboons.
    A pride of lions.
    A PARLIAMENT OF OWLS.

  29. I like the fact that these guys actually can agree to work together and push for what they want. And when they come to us they become MDC and ZANU Pf again ,they start throwing stones and we believe them.

  30. And I cannot even bring in a good second hand vehicle given to me by my cousin to replace my 20yr old Honda as the government demands import duty in forex (where the help do you get forex from if you don’t earn it?).
    Sadly, they do because they can … becauae nobody will stop them.

  31. It’s unfortunate that when people voted them in Office they vested their faith to hypocrites what a shame. These MPs it seems they are representing their own interests nothing for the people who voted for them. When it comes to money surpringly they all sing the same hymn book. Politics is a dirty game indeed.

  32. Sure Hoko the whole system smells as you can see the Executive is busy with ground breaking companies that have been operating all along as if business as usual. The Diamond Companies all others have always been there so whats new with these MP’s asking luxury cars. They were supposed to debate crises in the country such as health,fuel shortages, unemployment bad roads and on top of the list Corruption which is hardly talked about even at the just ended conference in Esigodine. Please give as a break by not publishing some of these issues which are not national issues at all. They are emanating from ED who is being driven in an Expensive Limousine, so its all about luxury and not fasting to get the nation moving for better lives.

  33. The culture of making etravagant and at times silly demands has creeped into most of our public officials. While Government is pushing the austerity agenda it boggles the mind whether our public officials really share and push forward the national vision. There is need to nip this culture in the bud, otherwise entertaining such would mean we are taking 2 steps forward and 3 steps backward from time to time as a country.

  34. Comment…MPs, nhamo yeavo vanokusarudzayi ahingakurariseyi nenzara. Nekuti isu vanokusarudzayi tisu tine dzisinakukwana nekuti tinosarudza vanhu vasina hanya nesu. Nekuti mose amuna hanya nesu. Ndovimba 2023 tichayedza kuitawo sevanhu vane dzakakwana, pane kusarudza vanedzisina kukwana kukunda dzedu.

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