The Thokozani Khupe-led MDC-T has challenged the new government to abide by the Constitution and to be accountable and responsive to speed up the country’s economic transformation.
MDC-T spokesperson Linda Masarira said her party noted with great appreciation the inclusion of women and technocrats in the new Cabinet.
“Our greatest concern as a party is the adherence and compliance of the Constitution as supreme law of this land and for the newly sworn-in ministers to be transparent, accountable, responsive and to be diligent as they execute their duties. Zimbabweans need to be inspired by new leadership which is committed and dedicated to transform Zimbabwe and not just to line their pockets as we have seen in the previous years,” Masarira said.
“We expect the new ministers to engage with all stakeholders as they carry out their mandate and to ensure that they uproot corruption in their relevant ministries and professionally manage their portfolios with a people-centred and transformative approach.”
She said a government that means business should not abet corruption. Some former Cabinet ministers have been implicated in corrupt activities with only a few being probed or facing trial for the graft offences.
“As a party, we implore the President to ensure that the State, institutions and all agencies of government have a zero tolerance on corruption and the buck stops with him. As part of our patriotism trajectory, we don’t look at Zimbabweans through political party, tribal or racial lenses, and we applaud President [Emmerson Dambudzo] ED Mnangagwa for looking at Zimbabweans in their totality and diversity without discrimination,” she said.
Masarira said it would have been desirable to achieve gender parity in Cabinet, but the low numbers of women in Parliament this year was a major setback.
“We hope and trust that in future appointments, not only in Cabinet, but in all key State appointments be it in parastatals, boards and all offices of the government, gender parity will be strictly adhered to as it is a constitutional provision,” she said.
The MDC-T spin doctor said it was also critical to note that the low number of women in Parliament was as a result violations of section 17 and 56 of the Constitution by political parties, where gender equality issues are not taken seriously.
Masarira urged women to participate in politics and vote for each other if their quest to achieve gender equality and advance women issues at legislative level was to be achieved.
She also demanded constitutional compliance particularly on devolution of power and security sector reforms.
“Similarly, the finance portfolio should be seen collectively with Ministry of Industry, SMEs, and various ministries controlling parastatals as all these impact directly on economic recovery. Managing banking sector crises in the immediate term is first test for Mthuli Ncube. We are expecting security sector reforms and a pro people army, police and intelligence services,” Masarira said.
“Time for politicking is over. It’s now time to work collectively as a nation to hold our ministers to account and demand improved service delivery from our local government and hospitals. People want housing, safe and clean water, jobs, quality education, decent salaries, proper surfaced roads and cash in the banks.”
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