ZANU PF honchos get luxury vehicles as MPs go without


Oh Lord won’t you buy me an E350

By Nomalanga Moyo
SW Radio Africa
05 March 2014

The decision by the ZANU PF government to acquire luxury vehicles for its ministers has outraged legislators who have not been allocated a single vehicle since they assumed office seven months ago.

The issue arose during the ongoing parliamentary debate on corruption, when legislators unanimously called for the government to provide them with vehicles to enable them to effectively carry out their duties.

Last month the government bought Mercedes Benz E350 sedans, Toyota Land Cruisers and Range Rover Sport vehicles for 10 provincial ministers and 24 deputy ministers, the weekly Zimbabwe Independent newspaper reported Friday.

The vehicles cost an estimated $130,000 for a Mercedes Benz, up to $160,000 for the Range Rover Sport and $140,000 for a Toyota Land Cruiser.

ZANU PF has already spent $20 million on top-of-the-range vehicles for its 26 Cabinet ministers.

“Members of Parliament are not demanding vehicles because they are being demeaned as is being reported, but they are saying give us what is due to us,” Mabvuku Tafara legislator James Maridadi told SW Radio Africa.

Maridadi said every legislator is entitled to a vehicle for use in their constituency during their five-year term in office.

“MPs don’t get given vehicles as such but they get a loan to purchase one and have to pay back these loans. This is unlike the ministers’ benefit where they are allocated two luxury vehicles which they don’t pay for.

“All we are saying is that the loans and the vehicles must be made available so that MPs can do their constituency work without hindrance. There is nothing scandalous at all in what we are asking for.”

Ministers also get a third vehicle under the same loan scheme as the MPs.

The Mabvuku MP said there was consensus in the House that the government was neglecting them while showing preferential treatment to ministers.

“Within 48 hours of being appointed, ministers had received their entitlements while elected MPs continue to struggle to get fuel coupons.

“Since I was elected, I haven’t received a penny as sitting allowance and I have only received fuel about five times, but ministers get their allocations accordingly.”

Maridadi said it was clear that government did not consider the legislature important “and this is wrong, the people should come first and luxuries second.”

The MP said they did not understand what the hold-up is in releasing loans.

The ZANU PF administration has been saying that Treasury has no money for essential projects, so this latest spend on luxury vehicles for party stalwarts raises eyebrows.

Running into millions, the spending comes amid a multi-million dollar birthday and wedding for President Mugabe and his daughter  – whose funding sources have not been adequately explained.

In the Masvingo District, thousands of families displaced by floods at Tokwe-Mukosi are without tents and food, following more flooding at Chingwizi where they are temporarily sheltered.

Millions others are on the verge of starvation, with a cash-strapped United Nations issuing an appeal to raise $60 million to feed hungry Zimbabweans.

Lowly paid teachers are yet to receive their backdated wage increments despite several promises from the government and Mugabe himself.

Service delivery has ground to a halt, with poor service and infrastructure haunting the country’s hospitals and schools. It is being left up to western  donors to try and ensure that some essential services remain functional.

From this month, the British will be paying school fees for 250,000 poor children, while the Americans are heavily involved in the Tokwe-Mukosi disaster relief.

5 Responsesto “ZANU PF honchos get luxury vehicles as MPs go without”

  1. wilbert says:

    Those at the very top of Zimbabwe’s feeding chain are demanding more and more. To satisfy the top chefs, it is no surprise that Mugabe has bought the ministers and their deputies the very latest posh vehicles. He really had no choice given that these top chefs are had been irked to see his own lavish birthday, lavish wedding, lavish Borrowdale mansion, lavish everything!

    Resources, like everything else on earth, are finite; there is no such thing as a bottomless mine of diamonds and money. The Zimbabwe economy has been sinking at an amazing rate, fuelled by the insatiable greed of Mugabe and his ruling elite. It is not therefore surprising that only Mugabe and the select few at the very top of the Zanu PF ruling elite are still getting a share of the looted wealth.

    People like Maridadi fought tooth and nail to get on the gravy train and are really disappointed that they too are not getting a cut of the nation’s looted riches. MDC had parliamentary majority and a raft of democratic reforms to implement throughout the life of the GNU. The party failed to get even one reform implemented; they had five years to do it and a parliamentary majority but failed to get even one reform implemented. What of substance does Maridadi think a totally discredited MDC can achieve this time round? Nothing; that is what!

    Maridadi is morning he is not getting lavish vehicles, allowances and all the other gravy train benefits he expected. Serves him right! The people have no sympathy for people like Maridadi who are crying that they have been forced into the fourth-class coaches – kombombera – of the gravy train! The people of Zimbabwe have been dying for meaningful democratic change to end all this crippling corruption and to blow the gravy train to kingdom come! The whole gravy train should be blown up first class, mbombera and everything in between!

  2. david taylor says:

    $20 million on vehicles for 26 ministers – that is almost a million per minister. The rape of the country continues.

  3. Chimbwido Warvet says:

    Actually, there should be no car that should be allocated to the MPs at all. Members of parliament should fend for themselves. Their responsibility is not to government but to their political constituencies. Why should the taxpayer serve the political interests of Job Sikala, Morgan Tsvangirai, Welshmen Ncube or those MPs of ZANU PF who hold no portfolio in government. I firmly believe, there is no genuine excuse whatsoever. MPs should mind their fcking business and get on with their political careers without being on anyone’s back. They should not be allowed to be parasites.

    In most developed nations, no parliamentarians are sustained by the taxpayer but fend for themselves in catering for their political interests. Zimbabwe can not afford the luxury of giving personal issue vehicles to its MPs. It will be robbing the nation of the scarce resources which could be better utilised where there is a genuine need in this country.

    • wilbert says:

      If MPs are going to be paid their monthly salary and not a penny more, then the same should apply to Ministers. To buy the latter
      group cars worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, as for Mugabe
      himself spend $6 million of a birthday bash and lavish wedding for his
      daughter and spend nothing for the former groups smacks of selfish arrogance.

      When these MPs were declared the winners of their respective constituencies they thought their future was secure, they were on the gravy train. Little did they know that Zimbabwe’s gravy train now has
      the super-duper deluxe first class coach for Mugabe and his inner most circle, one or two second class coaches for Zanu PF MPs, high ranking civil servants like Chihuri, Judge Bhunu, etc.

      The MDC MPs are in wagons fit to transport animals not humans – mbombera – and they have been shunted into siding in the middle of
      nowhere. Those wagons are going nowhere!

      The Zimbabwe cake has shrunk so there is significantly less to go round, a situation that has been made even worse by the fact that Mugabe and his inner circle have taken the lion’s share as usual. Zanu PF activists who helped Mugabe rig the elections only eight months ago are now being discarded by the tyrant like used toilet tissue. As for the MDC MPs, the tyrant owes them nothing and they can complain all they want, they will get nothing.

  4. Mugabe IgodzvaRegreen says:

    Ini zvangu ini

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