Chinamasa must retrench one person

HARARE - Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa missed it completely in his mid-term fiscal policy on Thursday when he announced that government intends to retrench

25 000 civil servants because that is not the answer to Zimbabwe’s economic problems.

Instead, he should have been bold enough to just retrench one person: President Robert Mugabe.

Zimbabwe’s populace and indeed the world at large have over the past years been calling on the retrenchment of probably the oldest and longest serving civil servant in our government.

With the rest of civil servants not allowed to remain in employment when they are over 60 years, it is only fair that Mugabe who has surpassed this benchmark by a further 32 years be retired.

Retiring Mugabe should be Chinamasa’s entry point as he tries to unlock the much- needed funds from international lenders, otherwise all his efforts will come to naught.

And the Zanu PF government thinks Zimbabweans and indeed civil servants are so foolish to buy their politicking idea of deliberately making Chinamasa announce policies that directly affect civil servants only for Mugabe to shoot them down.

While presenting his Mid-Term Fiscal Policy Statement Chinamasa scrapped bonuses for all government workers as part of a raft of measures which include taxing civil servants’ allowances and cutting salaries of senior officials. He also announced that government would retrench as part of austerity measures which raised the ire of civil servants.

After the announcement, Mugabe came from nowhere to “save” the civil servants by shooting down Chinamasa’s recommendations.

But we need to remind Mugabe that populist policies will not work this time around as he tries to dice his usual tricks to win favour with civil servants ahead of the 2018 national elections.

Just recently, the president was at it again as he humiliated Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere for land deals with PHD ministries leader Walter Magaya. All this to hoodwink Zimbabweans into thinking that he hates corruption.

In so doing, Mugabe pretends to have the people at heart, hence becomes an instant hero with civil servants; indeed the people’s saviour!

And Chinamasa seems to be an accomplice in these populist political schemes because, if he was not, he could have resigned after this humiliation by Mugabe, a second in as many years.

Instead, for him, it is business as usual, what business my foot? He should take a leaf from Nkosana Moyo who in 2001 quit as Industry minister because he could not agree with some government policies.

But if ever Chinamasa stays, we are all eager to see where he will get the money to pay civil servants’ bonuses when government has been struggling to clear bonuses for last year.

November — the bonus month — is just a month away, so, we will wait and see the drama unfolding; maybe Mugabe is counting on the bond notes coming next month.

And as the madness in the Zanu PF government continues unabated we hope Mugabe will once again pull his bag of tricks and shoot down the introduction of the unpopular bond notes by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor John Mangudya.

In shooting down the bond notes, Mugabe will for once truly become the “people’s hero”.

After a 36-year uninterrupted rule, Mugabe and his Zanu PF government cannot continue to hoodwink us using old bookish tricks and as they say; once bitten twice shy!

Even the late great Bob Marley once sang in his song Get Up Stand Up: “…You can fool some people sometimes, But you can’t fool all the people all the time.

So now we see the light (What you gonna do?), We gonna stand up for our rights!”

Comments (1)

Yes retrench Mr Mugabe is the correct thing to do

sanli2 - 20 September 2016

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