Zvobgo spills the beans


According to residents of Masvingo, one of the reasons why Public Service Minister Eddison Zvobgo, has remained popular in both the town and the province is that he does not hide his wealth or abuse government facilities for personal gain- and he speaks his mind.

Almost every guzzler in the town drinks at one of his two hotels and with the proposed $24 million expansion of the Flamboyant, in which Zvobgo is in partnership with others, the business community in that town as well as tourists will benefit from his hospitality.

While other leaders are doing all they can to hide their business interests Zvobgo does not appear to be ashamed of his wealth.

“Poverty –  self-inflicted through ignorance, laziness or lack of skills – must be something to be ashamed of.  Wealth, honestly and lawfully accumulated, must be worth of praise,” he is reported to have told senior civil servants.

As if this was not enough, he also said there should be “less government” to enable the people to become self-governing.

“It is also true that to prosper, our people must be subjected to less and less government as they become truly self-governing. I further submit that for SAP to stand a chance, we, your elected government, must be prepared more and more to dismount from the backs of the people. We must let the people go.

“It will not be pleasant for bureaucrats to govern with a minimum of regulations and other fiats,” he pointed out

“Huge inefficient, unaffordable and impenetrable bureaucracies; tyrannical one-party cliques steeped in ignorance and usually worshipping foreign idols; adherence to nonsensical and bankrupt ideologies; suffocating multitudes of regulations; corrupt and inefficient state-run enterprises; and a rare gift for diving external enemies; an incurable inability to confess to past errors; all these maladies and more have combined to assume the permanence of poverty, underdevelopment, disease and marginalisation of the billions of human beings who comprise 80 percent of the world’s population,” Zvobgo told civil servants.

For SAP to succeed he said human rights had to be held sacrosanct.

“Governments must be freely elected and leaders must not overstay their welcome. The rule of law must not merely be enshrined in the constitution but must be inculcated in the national psyche. Tolerance of dissent, the worship of justice and the immeasurable dispensing of mercy and charity are the hallmarks of the ideal political atmosphere without which no economics or other humane adjustment programme is possible.”

Zvobgo went on: “It is not enough to require efficiency of civil servants if the reins of power are in incompetent, unenlightened hands. Economic adjustment must be viewed as a matter of life and death. There must be no doubt as to the only ideology that works. Everyone must embrace pragmatism. What does not work must be discarded”


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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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