By Chavaraidze Dombo
COVID-19 caught many Governments and citizens off-guard. In progressive countries, all efforts are being channeled towards containing the spread of this deadly virus and curing those infected. Governments are ensuring that rescue packages are available to key sectors of the economy. The World Health Organisation is doing its best to safeguard the world’s population.
Zimbabwe is confronted with this virus. The confirmed numbers are still low but if trends elsewhere in the world are to go by, then, the worst is yet to come.
A dysfunctional health system
Owing to President Mnangagwa’s destructive economic policies, Zimbabwe’s health system is dysfunctional. Long before the Coronavirus came knocking on the Country’s doorsteps, Zimbabwe’s health care system had been destroyed by the government.
Not withstanding the fact that the country’s economy was taking a nosedive, the government developed the habit of firing medical professionals each time they confronted their employer for a cost of living adjustment.
The relationship between government and the public sector health workers is sour due to President Mnangagwa’s arrogance. The morale amongst the workers in public health institutions is low due to the fact that their incomes are pathetic.
Public hospitals are inadequately resourced both in terms of medical drugs, protective clothing, laboratory equipment as well as ambulances. Each time the medical professionals called on the government to address the above-mentioned inadequacies, the government was quick to bring out its well-oiled propaganda machinery and pretend as if all was normal.
Instead of doing a reality check and addressing the issues affecting the health sector in Zimbabwe, President Mnangagwa was preoccupied with maintaining his stranglehold on power.
Jobs! Jobs! Jobs! mantra was a facade
During the eventful November 2017 when Mr Mnangagwa was being catapulted to the Presidency by the military, he promised the masses “jobs”. Instead of delivering the “jobs”, he went on to do exactly the opposite. And now the jobless people who survive through informal trading are the worst affected by the unavoidable COVID-19 induced Lockdown.
It is not a secret that the country’s Social Welfare Department exists only on paper and has for long been “Missing in Action”. For reasons best known to himself, President Mnangagwa in his capacity as Head of Government has failed to provide safety nets to cushion those who now find themselves staring starvation in the face as they cannot go out to hustle for food.
Governments exist to serve the citizenry and Zimbabweans are looking up to the government for survival in times like these. President Mnangagwa has not lived up to the expectations of the people so far, instead he has proved to be worse than his predecessor Robert Mugabe.
People feel letdown by non other than President Mnangagwa.
Its about time that the world in general and the donor community in particular seriously look at how best to meaningfully assist Zimbabweans.
Mnangagwa’s government must stop playing with people’s lives by lying to the world that things are okay.
For now, the whole world must be made aware that President Mnangagwa is Zimbabwe’s biggest letdown.
Its risky to entrust this man with the responsibility of steering Zimbabwe out of its current predicament.
A mosquito cannot eradicate malaria.