HARARE - After more than a month of waiting, President Robert Mugabe yesterday announced his cabinet, and as expected, the 89-year-old leader recycled deadwood at a time Zimbabweans expected a development cabinet judging by the economic challenges facing the nation.
Zimbabwe is at a crossroads, the economy has taken a nosedive since the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) announced that President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF had won the July 31 harmonised elections.
The public was on tenterhooks, itching to know what type of leadership Mugabe was going to appoint to oversee national matters. It is obvious though that this has been a complex task with the public not expecting a musical-chairs affair.
Zimbabweans have had sufficient time to let the poll outcome sink in after another bout of a highly contested plebiscite and were waiting in anticipation for a development orientated cabinet where Mugabe would name new faces to bring in the much needed confidence for investors to flood in.
But the nation was shocked yesterday when Mugabe appointed a total of 63 ministers, deputy ministers and ministers of state for provinces. What a bloated team for a small country suffering from acute economic challenges. We don’t need all these ministers, do we?
While the bloated government will surely raise concerns among progressive thinking Zimbabweans, we are shocked by some strange appointments Mugabe made.
How on earth does Dzikamai Mavhaire become minister of Energy at a time the nation is in a crisis over electricity shortages?
What is Mavhaire’s background with regards the energy sector, is this not factional balancing?
It is clear from Mugabe’s cabinet that he is trying to please everybody.
But one lesson he should have long grasped in his political career is that he cannot please all people all the same time.
For example, the strange appointment of Josiah Hungwe as the minister of State for Liaising on Psychomotor Activities in Education (whatever this means) is ridiculous to say the least.
Mugabe was clearly balancing the long held faction fight between the so-called Edison Zvobgo faction and the Hungwe faction in Masvingo.
However, there are certain appointments which make sense like the bringing in of Fred Moyo as deputy minister of Mines and Supa Mandiwanzira as deputy minister of Information.
But we still wonder what the old guard and those who were recycled by Mugabe will hope to achieve given the problems we are facing as a country. Time will tell.Is this the best?