Zim govt criticised over Kuwait saga

HARARE - Opposition political parties have let rip at government’s failure to swiftly bring back stranded Zimbabwe women who were lured by a human trafficking syndicate to Kuwait.

While the sorry tales of the young women came to light almost a month ago — government’s intervention has been painfully slow and it only took the involvement of a local businessman to kick-start the process.

In a statement, the Tendai Biti led People Democratic party’s women assembly chairperson Evelyn Masaiti said Zimbabwe is better off without a government, considering Zanu PF’s misplaced priorities.

“…Section 35 (3a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe is very clear that all Zimbabwean citizens are entitled to the protection of the State wherever they may be,” Masaiti said.

She said the Zanu PF government is in breach of the Constitution by failing to protect its citizens.

“…the very reason why innocent citizens have been thrown into such desperation as to be trafficked and end up being abused as sex slaves is because of Zanu PF’s failed rule.

“Unemployment is pegged at 90 percent while 83 percent of the population is living on less than a dollar per day because of Zanu PF’s ruinous economic policies and its sky high corruption,” she said.

She said the women stranded in Kuwait are victims of Mugabe’s misrule.

“For the perpetrators of such misrule to then put up a case that they are unable to deploy a plane to pick up their citizens is the most dastardly of actions and confirms how ruthless Mugabe’s regime is.”

She said even during the colonial era, there were no cases of Zimbabweans being stranded in foreign lands searching for employment opportunities, adding that instead people from across the region and beyond flooded the country in search of jobs.

Masaiti said Mugabe has been engaging in bloated foreign trips that she said have so far this year gobbled about $20 million.

“Thus for the government to fail to raise $60 000 to bring 32 bonafide citizens back home is the highest level of irresponsibility,” she said.

Harare businessman Wicknell Chivayo has since come to the rescue of the women after paying for their air fares.

Describing government’s lackadaisical reaction to the plight of the stranded women as “shameful”, the Welshman Ncube led MDC said there is need for self introspection among the country’s leaders who regularly splurge on foreign travel.

“The government’s shameful failure to assist in the return of 32 Zimbabwean women stranded in Kuwait, effectively condemning them to an unbearable existence in a foreign land is an embarrassment to the nation.

“Just recently, ... Mugabe just got back from one of his costly global jaunts in New York for a debate on SGDs where he took with him an entourage of no less than 20 people, gobbling up thousands of dollars.

“Surely, if government can afford to blow $20 million in less than 6 months on ... Mugabe’s wasteful and useless trips abroad, it can afford ... to bring back the women stranded in Kuwait,” said MDC spokesperson Kurauone Chihwai.

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