Govt should address poverty

HARARE - We are saddened by the government’s, in its wisdom or lack of it, omission of the critical Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) number one to end poverty by 2030 and just like most Zimbabweans, wonder why such an important objective is ignored.

We are part of the United Nations (UN) family of nations and also signatory to the SDGs, which aim among other things to end poverty, reduce hunger and promote access to education by 2030 but somehow our government has decided to drop other goals, in fact the most important one — ending poverty.

While we appreciate government’s financial limitations, we are however, appalled that a government which three years ago promised to improve the lives of Zimbabweans is now reneging on its promises.

Of course, that is to be expected from a government whose priorities are warped but for the same government to put up a straight face while making such an announcement is not only shocking but insensitive, especially if we are to consider that poverty levels have reached alarming levels.

Permanent secretary in the so-called ministry of Macroeconomic Planning Desire Sibanda would have us believe that selecting goals like ending hunger, improving quality education and improving infrastructure are critical in ending poverty but that is like hiding behind a finger.

Our poverty in Zimbabwe is a result of a government that has useless ministerial departments, a government that prioritises foreign travel with handsome travel expenses and an administration that believes in self-aggrandisement to perpetuate an unpopular rule.

We agree with the UN position that unless implemented, the SDGs will remain a pipe-dream and thus urge our bloated government to do everything in its power to ensure poverty is reduced.

The World Food Programme reports that 72 percent of the country’s population are living on less than $1,25 per day and vulnerable groups such as women, children and the aging have been hardest hit by the scourge that has since descended on the country’s cities, according to Zimbabwe Poverty Atlas 2015 (Atlas).

This alone should be cause for concern to any people-oriented government and should even influence its policies, yet with the Mugabe government the reverse is happening.

The economic crisis of the past decades has prevented substantial capital investment, and new enterprises have been slow to emerge so our government should make sure that it has policies that attract investment.

According to the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions only 700 000 people are officially employed, leaving about 80 percent of the workforce struggling to make a living in the informal sector and it is time we confront poverty.

Comments (1)

How do you expect the gvt to address poverty when they have no solutions They themselves are not affected by poverty so why worry They can fly every other day receive best health treatment in the world and afford to buy $1.4 million rings when donated ARVs are not available No paracetamol in clinics We are dreaming Zimbabwe is doomed Even the heavens are looking aside I dare to stop any of the gvt bigwigs and see if they have a bond note You ask why and what did we do to deserve such a gvt considering where we where economically before these vultures took over We looked down on our neighbouring countries -now its our turn and the suffering is worse than our neighbours ever endured

gonyeti 2 - 9 December 2016

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