HARARE - Opposition leader Simba Makoni has accused the Zanu PF government of consciously killing the future of
Zimbabwean youths by withholding funds for Basic Education Assistance Module (Beam).
In an interview with the Daily News on Sunday, the Mavambo Kusile Dawn (MKD) leader said President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF was pursuing selfish interests at the expense of public accountability.
Ngoni Masoka, the permanent secretary in the ministry of Labour and Social Welfare told Parliament last week that in the 2014 national budget, government allocated inadequate funds for the education of vulnerable children under the Beam programme.
Makoni, who entered into a Grand Coalition with Morgan Tsvangirai ahead of presidential elections in a futile effort to end Mugabe’s rule, said Zanu PF’s priorities were misplaced.
A former Finance minister in Mugabe’s government, Makoni questioned government’s wisdom in acquiring top-of-the-range vehicles for top officials when the country’s health and education infrastructure was
“We have always said Zanu PF and Mugabe no longer have interest in the future of the country,” said Makoni.
“They have chosen to dump the future of the young generation by denying them the right to education.
They have consciously resolved to kill the future of the country, literally burying it underground because our children are the future,” he added.
While acknowledging that government was broke, the former Sadc executive secretary said the little funds available in the country must be channelled to the right things.
He also said it was unacceptable that orphans and other disadvantaged children who depend on State assistance were dropping out of school.
He added that it was government’s moral obligation to take care of society’s disadvantaged, particularly children.
Makoni lamented the dearth of servant leadership in government, saying there was a yawning gap between lifestyles of junior government employees especially uniformed forces and their pampered bosses.
He said the uniformed forces were worse off than they were before independence in 1980.
“If you go to the homes of senior police and army officers there are fleets of vehicles, yet junior officers who do the real work use public transport,” Makoni said.
Makoni blamed the country’s financial problems on “Zanu PF’s tendency to pick up fights with people who can help the country.”
“We shall continue our efforts to work with those in government, and others in politics, business, and civil society; to find ways to alleviate the many hardships confronting the people every day,” Makoni
“In this regard, we commend and thank players in civil society, and the international community, for their sterling efforts to stem the humanitarian crises caused by food shortages, HIV/Aids and other diseases, domestic and gender-based violence, crime and corruption, state ineptitude and heartlessness.”
He said he would strive to invigorate MKD into the “a party of choice” in order to “generate hope among the people, that they can create a better future for themselves.
“We remain convinced that our vision, values and principles form a solid foundation for the economic, social, cultural and moral recovery of our nation, and future progress for all our people,” he said.