This was not said on the social media but in Parliament. Mbizo Member of Parliament Settlement Chikwinya said yesterday he was aware that Mthuli Ncube had resigned when he did not pitch up in Parliament.
Chikwinya raised the issue as a point of order asking that debate on the 2019 budget should be stopped because the minister was not in the House.
“We are debating the most important government policy, which is the National Budget. The presenter of that Budget, who is the Minister, is not here,” he said.
“The Chief Whip of ZANU PF in this Parliament had indicated that the motion be stood over until the Minister arrives in Parliament in respect of the nation and the importance of the work before us. So, I see it as disrespectful of Parliament by either the Minister himself or the Government in its entirety for us to debate this motion in his absence. How is he going to respond?
“How is he going to hear our input? So, I propose that we abide by the Chief Whip of ZANU PF‘s assertions that we stood over this motion until the Minister arrives. In fact we are aware that the minister has resigned,” he concluded.
The acting Speaker merely told Chikwinya: “Hon. Chikwinya, please be informed that the Hon. Minister gave his apologies as he is away on government business. His officers are present and taking notes of the debate that is going on. So, the debate will be presented in the Hansard.”
Ncube, who has been criticised for his frequent overseas trips which critics say are not yeilding anything, is in New York attending the United Nations High Level meeting on middle-income countries.
The meeting is about progress on implementing sustainable development goals and Ncube is presenting on Zimbabwe’s progress.
He is basically selling the Zimbabwe is open for business mantra and his Transitional Stabilisation Programme but he has been under heavy criticism for not paying attention to problems at home while meeting “investors” who never come to Zimbabwe to invest.
This was after Ncube posted a picture in which he is with “investors” and tweeted: “Wallstreet investor dinner in New York with some of the prominent investors and capital allocators on the #Zimbabwe stock market. Very positive investor reception and feedback on ongoing economic reforms. Zimbabwe Is Open for Business.”
Ncube is one of the five non-constituency members who were appointed to Mnangagwa’s cabinet in September.
He has repeatedly said he is bullish about the progress that Zimbabwe is making but people seem to be focussed on the rocketing prices and shortage of fuel.