Mugabe won't delegate authority to deputies

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe has come under fire for being “greedy” and failing to cede power to his deputies, with the nonagenarian travelling on official business at a time he is supposed to be resting.

Mugabe — who is on his month-long annual holiday — has embarked on high-profile trips, spoiling himself with flying business class around the world and spending nights in presidential suites in premier hotels — all in the claim of working for Zimbabwe’s betterment.

The doddering president has maintained an air of energy and initiative, but the results have been modest.

Opposition political parties accused the soon-to-be 93-year-old of engaging in fundraising antics, getting millions of dollars in foreign travel allowances while on leave.

This comes as the country is battling a typhoid outbreak and drug shortages, a time the globetrotting president is spending $36 million on foreign and domestic trips in the first 10 months of 2016.

Mugabe, who  together with his family was in China a few days ago having bilateral talks with the country’s president Xi Jinping, has travelled on official business to Mali for the two-day France-Africa Summit.

Zimbabwe People First spokesperson Jealousy Mawarire said apart from the money, Mugabe’s actions were a sign that he took the country as a private entity.

“There are two aspects here; there is the money aspect as well, because when he travels he gets money for foreign travels. So, that is more allowances for him,” Mawarire said.

“It shows that he is running the country as a private entity.

“It should not be surprising because already when he is not there Cabinet does not sit, the central committee does not sit, politburo does not sit, and it’s a one-man band.  He believes that the country is going to die when he dies.

“The message is loud and clear, that there is no confidence in his deputies and ministers to execute bilateral duties.

“That’s also why he has been succeeding himself because in his mind, no one can do anything better than him.

“Remember that time when he said he was better than Jesus as he resurrected more times than him.”

Reports are that his ministers and deputies are also making trips to the Middle East, where he is holidaying to consult him and get instructions.

From Mali, it is believed Mugabe will also travel to Ethiopia for the 28th Ordinary Session of the summit of the African Union in Addis Ababa from January 22 to 31.

MDC spokesperson Obert Gutu said Treasury has to fork out money to support Mugabe’s travels for trips that could be attended by ministers and ambassadors.

“This man is a dictator. He has set up a base in the Middle East and leaves from there for official business to China and to Mali.

“We have a Foreign Affairs minister and ambassadors who are paid to do that. We have (Zimbabwe’s ambassador to Senegal and Gambia, Trudy Stevenson) close to Mali, who is well conversant in French, who was a French teacher at Arundel School and could have easily travelled there from Dakar, Senegal,” Gutu said.

“He is supposedly on leave, on rest with a whole entourage and using state resources.

“This has shown what he is — a one-man band and that he doesn’t trust anyone. In the meantime, treasury will be forking out money to pay for him and the entourage as well as high-landing fees for the charted plane.

“This has gone to show that Zanu PF is Robert Mugabe and Robert Mugabe is Zanu PF and government.  And this can be seen in the way these operate.

“He has two vice presidents but he doesn’t look at them as capable. They are just ceremonial deputies.

“And when acting, they will be just warming chigaro chamambo (the king’s seat), they can’t make any decisions.

“Even when he travels Cabinet doesn’t sit and no government decision is made.”

Jacob Mafume, People’s Democratic Party spokesperson said Mugabe thinks his assistants are useless.

“I think what they are trying to do is justify gobbling State resources while on leave, and pretend to be travelling on State business.

“This is a pure waste of State resources while we are in the midst of a typhoid crisis that can easily turn into a cholera outbreak,” Mafume said.

“For a man who has two vice presidents in a small country like Zimbabwe, he has shown he has no confidence in them.

“He believes they are useless. One of them can easily have been sent there.”

Comments (3)

Mambo havasati vafa vapenyu

Mambo - 14 January 2017

What highest position did Mugabe hold while he was in the teaching profession? This may help explain why he is not into good management principles. When you are on leave you do not come back to office unless you feel in assumption of duty forms. This is again why he does not know that a good leader is realised by the number of his juniors how are promoted. The fact that he does not want to see any leader in Zimbabwe in his life time means a lot. Leaders like Great Kaunda of Zambia are enjoying and seeing how the young ones are making decisions. But for Mugabe he thinks he is the only person with five if not six senses in Zimbabwe. The situation is worsened by members of his party who always sing praising songs even where it is not necessary.

Gwimbiibenyu - 14 January 2017

Same goes for Ministers too when they are on leave their deputies dont takeover the reigns instead its another Minister...thats double salary for the big boys its ridiculous

Sinyo - 16 January 2017

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