Govt splashes $6m on cars

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe’s administration is buying 100 new fuel-guzzler vehicles from high-flying auto dealers in Harare for over $6 million at a time millions are facing starvation.

The Ford Ranger vehicles, part of the new Zimbabwe government fleet, will likely be purchased from either Croco Motors or Duly’s, all of which have an existing contract with the government.

Government, through CMED (Pvt) Ltd, which procures and services government vehicles, has floated a tender which has caused consternation in the car trading industry, amid speculation the tender will likely benefit only Croco and Duly’s.

On the local market, the Ford Ranger double cabs cost anything between $50 000 to $60 000.
This means government will spend about $6 million in funds from a supplementary budget that will be approved by Parliament soon to buy the 100 commercially available fuel-guzzling vehicles.

“CMED (Pvt) Ltd invites tenders for the supply and delivery of 100 X Ford Ranger D/cab vehicles,” says a special formal tender floated by the CMED managing director on October 6.

“Tender documents are obtainable at CMED (Pvt) Ltd head office, procurement office, corner Herbert Chitepo and Rekayi Tangwena, Harare at a non-refundable fee of $10.

“Tenders must be enclosed in sealed envelopes and endorsed on the outside with the tender number, the description, the closing date and must be posted in time to be sorted into Post Office before 1000hrs on Tuesday 29 October 2013.

“Companies intending to submit a tender are advised to read the invitation to tender document carefully so that they are familiar with the nature and extent of their obligation on their company if accepted.”

Charles Kuwaza, State Procurement Board chairperson,  was unreachable for comment as he was not picking up his phone yesterday.

Critics immediately blasted government for floating a tender that may benefit only two companies, saying government should have purchased a new fleet of fuel-efficient vehicles to increase demand for struggling auto companies and stimulate the local economy. 

Government has reportedly directed the CMED administration to speed up planned purchases of vehicles for its fleet.

This will be the largest one-time purchase of hybrid vehicles for the government fleet this year.
Government will spend more to buy advanced technology for the government fleet.

The purchase of the imported vehicles comes at a time Willowvale Mazda Motor Industries, Zimbabwe’s largest car assembly plant, is struggling under the weight of crippling debt and declining sales volumes caused by a spectacular meltdown in its diversified motor industry that has put 210 jobs at risk.

The government owns Willowvale through the Industrial Development Corporation, which has a 75 percent stake in the car dealer through Motec Holdings Private Limited.

Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on State Enterprises and Parastatals Management on Industrial Development Enterprises, has recommended an urgent bail-out for the firm, but the calls seem to have fallen on deaf ears.

Although the company has vast machinery at its disposal, there is no production taking place and the workshops are deserted, leaving the company with no option but to pay idle workers and other unavoidable fixed costs.

Ahead of this purchase, the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) demanded that government procures locally manufactured vehicles for newly-elected legislators and cabinet ministers to promote the local automotive industries.

ZCTU, the largest labour federation in the country, said government had in the past opted for imports while depriving the local manufacturing industry, which is failing to grow due to under-funding.

“These industries are in dire straits and need our support,” said Japhet Moyo, the ZCTU secretary-general in a statement to the media.

“It does not make sense for our leaders to continue exporting jobs by buying cars from abroad.

“The buying of cars from the local manufacturers will go a long way in supporting and promoting our industries and thereby creating employment for citizen.”

In a country where the car industry has wilted significantly due to economic contraction over the last decade, most car dealers are struggling.

The struggle for the few available customers, who include government, thus remain intense among the top car dealers in the country, who include Amtec and Amalgamated Motor Company.

With the tender specifying the supply of Ford Rangers, most car dealers who specialise in other models say they have been technically elbowed out of the lucrative deal.

“A tender in our industry should not be model specific but this one is, meaning we cannot compete,” a Harare-based car dealer told the Daily News, speaking on condition of anonymity, fearing prejudice in the tender.

“This is hard to take considering that government has been our biggest customer.”

The intended purchase of the off-road monsters is likely to further rock the boat for the government which is accused of focusing on perks for ministers and government officials while turning a blind eye at the plight of poorly paid civil servants who have been clamouring for a pay review.

Comments (27)

Wat else can we expect from Mad Bob's government instead of them to inject that 6 million into the financial crippled Willovale Motor Company there chose to go for personal expensive vehicles .Also forgetting that their are responsible for the financial difficulties being faced by that same company through Willowvale Motor scandal which Mugabe n his late wife Sally where also involved ..haaa l hate myself n also this corrupt stupid government

bento - 17 October 2013

Hezvoka the supporters. I hope you will be given rides on these unnecessary assets on your empty tummies and at a time when millions are in dire need of food and facing starvation. God should have mercy on this old rabid dictator whose heart is as cold as stone with no morals. So is this also SANCTIONS that is making these greedy pigs behave like this. We are not surprised and watch this space. At a time when major quaternary and teaching hospitals have no water simple drugs and equipment. By the way for those who support this dictator very soon he will be flying out to seek state of the art medical care and you and some of your relatives are condemned to early graves but can afford the luxury of buying cars. SHAME SHAME SHAME

vongai - 17 October 2013

Can Godwills Masimirembwa do the nation a favour by buying these vehicles for govt ? In turn, the Attorney General will drop the corruption against him. You have 24 hours to act accordingly, Masimirebwa, or else!

Trebor Ebagum - 17 October 2013

.......corruption charges...........

Trebor Ebagum - 17 October 2013

Bhora mugedhi! Indeginise, Empower, Develop and Employ. We have already started fullfilling promises made to the people in the Election Manifesto. We have "come to the end of the tortous and retrogressive inclusive government" Spending is our vocabulary, where the funds will come from hameno!

Handei Mberi - 17 October 2013

This is so disheartening...

Madhumbe - 17 October 2013

this Bob gvnt is doomed to fail;. put this in the archives and re publish when the economy takes a nose dive

manford - 17 October 2013

You cannot solely blame GVT for the demise of such companies as Willowvale. I will not be surprised to know that executives and managers in that entity have over the years or even today as we speak awarded themselves salaries and benefits that cannot be sustained by the organization. This is true for most companies in Zimbabwe today private and parastatals even councils, where a few individuals at the top enjoy hefty benefits to the detriment of majority who bear the brunt of hard work and then cry foal after running the businesses to the ground.

mpostori - 17 October 2013

But what does this have to do with Croco Motors and Dulys? These are in business just like you. If government buys from them so be it. Why do you have to tarnish their image as if there is something illegal they have done.

james - 17 October 2013

Do you mean Govt must not buy cars if they are needed? Reliable vehicles are absolutely critical to ability of Govt to deliver.

simba - 17 October 2013

this should come as no surprise to anyone that is a student of history. Since independence, after every election in which ZANUPF has had any significant threat, and they pull it off somehow, they always end up rewarding themselves this way. What I find appalling is the hypocrisy in this, if we spend 6 million dollars upgrading our grid, or maybe installing solar panels or something to at least pretend they cared about the people that just "voted them" back into power, wouldn't that be good? With such leadership, Zimbabwe is such a lost cause. Its a shame that all we hear is sanctions this sanctions that, and your priorities are to buy beautiful cars to go where? and do what business because surely Zimbabwe ain't got no roads and infrastructure to monitor and develop.

tino - 17 October 2013

its ok. daily news has blown propotions here. a new car costs 38000 at dulys. vofamba netsoka here

sean - 17 October 2013

@ simba The problem is not that govt is buying cars, but rather its the procurement process here where the tender board allows buyers to specify brand for example if govt department needs supply of washing powder and then tender is invited explicitly asking for OMO that is like saying if you have Surf dont apply.In any case you are given a chance explain what your product Surf can do , it could be better than OMO and this favours a certain supplier.

godza - 17 October 2013

Six million dollars would have gone a long way in rescucitating Willowvale, bearing in mind that there is a beautiful BT50 whose specs match those of the Ford Ranger. Someone says the vehicle us 38k - where does one find a t/cab for that little? It adds value to your comment if it us researched. What us wrong with buy Zimbabwe? It only shows how much we hate ourselves

Jamengweni Godonga - 17 October 2013

Guess who owns dulys and crocos. It's a no Brainerd idiots

boss - 17 October 2013

Given the circumstances we are in I think we wish we had Joyce Banda here who auctioned all luxury vehicles for the sake of the poor, but alas this government with 700 companies in Harare only closing, and we don't know how many more in other towns I wonder where the priorities are? Simba what stops the government from functioning if they buy the MPs a cheaper car because they don't much as we have already seen. Instead of finding ways of busting sanctions they are fighting in parliament for sanctions to be lifted as if Obama is in the Zim government.

Maita Manyuka - 18 October 2013

Who are these cars for and why double cabs?

Timothy Thorton - 18 October 2013

@simba, 2million face starvation or need food aid, whats the first priority Simba, Cars or Hungry people. tinoona zvakasiyana tiregererewo

garwe - 18 October 2013

How can 6 million dollars benefit the starving 2 million considering that if the money was to be shared equally amongst them one will get only 3 dollars, that money is juss a drop in the ocean the gvt needs those cars for service delivery bantu. let us not just whine over non-issues.

Dunderhead - 18 October 2013

Mugabe, you are nuts, remember the dovi 'dhodhi' thing on one airline about you. Thus what you are. Just enjoying with your thugs. Your manifesto is just stupid - just a way of deserving the people. You are nuts old man!! Go for your eye check in Singapore, so that when you come back, your correct the manifesto!!

Gushungo Matibiri - 18 October 2013

Iwe Dunderhead pliz do not defend the indefensible. This is hogwash. Zimbabwe is the only country that with such a huge appetite for spending meager resources on a few people who are thought to be important when the majority wallow in poverty. Some of us have lived in countries where PMs and MPs share cars to get to parliament and there is no spending on cars every time a there is an election. Are they not giving services to their nations? What is so special about the Zimbabwean baboons that they need a new fleet of cars with every election. 6 mil K how much money is needed to just sink boreholes at Pari and Harare Hospital? Nonsense. We do not need those cars at all. There are other pressing issues that could have been settelled using the 6mil. Drugs for example and water treatment chemicals. Do not tell us rubbish here. If you are one of those benefiting from ZANU-PF SHIT LUCIFER just know that the devil is also capable of rewarding but payback time will come. NXA

vongai - 18 October 2013

Please Honorable President can you first the plight of people suffering the citizens in this country - Students on cadet are not getting their results because the same government is failing to pay the fees as per agreement. How can you purchase vehicles for MPs where are the old ones thats extra luxury when majority suffers please be serious. We all belong to this country, we deserve better living , not only a handful. Please pay for student grants, stop wasting money.

reality - 18 October 2013

How many of you went on to buy their personal cars when your relative's son or daughter could not pay school fees. Stop crying over nothing.

Ryan Nash - 18 October 2013

Lord have mercy on Zimbabwe. This clueless selfish government'priorities are ill conceived and unsustainable. They wont do anything for the povo cause they know the truth that they just rigged elections and the truth is povo haidi Zanupf. So they splash money to reward themselves for their Houdini act. FOOOLS

fanyana morongwe - 20 October 2013

Told you sanctioncry are a madman's hoax meant to defend diamond looting. How can a country under American 'sanctions' buy so many American cars? .

Kaidoo - 20 October 2013

Indeed the evil Zanu pf gravy train is here to stay.Offcourse the Engineman of the gravy train is Commander in Sleeping ,Matinjili Matibili.

Murderous Matibili - 21 October 2013

mugabe is worse than the devil. the devil is even fears him

atz - 22 October 2013

Nhasi zvarwadza ka. When the Inclusive Government bought nice Jeep Vehicles for the Cabinet Ministers and ISUZU trucks for the legislators you were quiet. But, because it is the President Mugabe led GVT zvaipa.. Oh yee hypocrites. Go hang, for your own information the Ford Ranger is not a fuel guzzler as you have named it, besides the VW Amarok it is the most diesel efficient vehicle and uses less diesel compared to its fellow D-4D, Isuzu D-Max, Navara etc. Hamuna nyaya vasiyeyi.

President - 23 October 2013

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.