Accountability has been a major challenge in Zimbabwe, both in public and private sectors. Those in public office have abused the trust bestowed upon them when they were elected into office. They only make decisions which only favour them and ensure that they remain in power. The love for power, or rather the love to consolidate their power, has been the cause why many people now live below the poverty datum line. Major hospitals are now running out of basic essential medicines because they are no longer being prioritised by Greedy politicians, whose sole purpose now is to ensure they will be re-elected in the next elections.
By Tapiwa Cherai
Domestic and foreign debts are one of the major factors causing massive suffering on ordinary people. The Government just borrows as long as it suits them. When Mr Robert Mugabe resigned from office last November, the government had already borrowed close to $5 billion dollars. This money was borrowed without the approval of Parliament.
Most of the debts that we, as a country are belaboured with today were completed behind our backs as citizens, contrary to the Constitution. Government has failed to account for the money that it borrowed. It has failed to give the nation a clear breakdown of what the borrowed money was used for. Government has also been quick to come back to the people, advising them of the economic challenges the country is embroiled in. In short, Government has accepted that the nation is now broke and is now asking citizens to pay an excessive 2 % tax on electronic money transfer to enable it to finance its activities.
We, as a nation, have plenty of minerals, but I will dwell much on the Marange diamonds. When Tendai Biti was the minister of Finance, he made a shocking revelation that some diamond mines were not remitting tax to government. The government, up to this day, has failed to clearly account to us its citizens beyond any reasonable doubt the amount that was collected from the sale of diamonds. Government has failed to account for the gems that were mined in Marange.
It has also failed to account for how the proceeds from the sale of this precious mineral were used. Marange area is still one of the least developed communities in Zimbabwe. The failure by Government to account for its mineral reserves has made it very difficult for foreign companies to come and invest in our mining sector, which has so much potential but is undercapitalised.
Our challenges as a nation are solely being caused by the lack of accountability by our chosen leaders. When we elect these leaders into office, they go away and start planning their own affairs. They forget they are only representatives of the people. They forget that they cannot make decisions on our behalf without first consulting us.
It is disheartening to note that out of the $7.2 billion domestic debt, a large chunk of it was borrowed without the approval of Parliament.
Who then gave the government permission to borrow when they did not consult us, the citizenry?
Zimbabwean Politicians have now become Demi-Gods that are worshipped and praised, instead of us putting them to task at every turn.
The moment we realise that the power is with the people and not the elected officials, it is the time that Zimbabwe will prosper again.
The time we will realise that those in public offices are only our messengers, it will be the time that Zimbabwe will record an economic growth.
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