Mthuli Ncube Says Govt Is Weighing Buying Vehicles For Ministers And MPs Locally
Government is weighing the option of purchasing vehicles for ministers and parliamentarians from local vehicle assemblers to promote the domestic industry and reduce foreign currency expenditure in line with austerity measures being undertaken.
Local vehicle assemblers say such a move will create thousands of jobs and revive the vehicle assembling sector.
Quest Motors and Willowvale Motor Industries (WMI), which are the country’s foremost vehicle assemblers say they have capacity to produce quality vehicles which match imported Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs).
The vehicle assemblers argue that Government is obliged to implement a directive issued by the Office of the President and Cabinet that compels them to purchase vehicles from local assemblers.
Many developed countries reserve locally produced vehicles for their Government officials; with the case in point being Britain which exclusively produces locally made Jaguars and Range Rovers for its Cabinet ministers.
Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube said in an interview that Government was considering buying the next batch of ministerial vehicles from local assemblers after suspending vehicle imports for the current crop.
“That is a very interesting proposition that we definitely have to consider,” he said. “What is of importance to note right now is that Government has not bought or ordered cars for ministers.
“Most of the ministers and permanent secretaries are driving vehicles that they had in the past or which are pool cars in their respective ministries or parastatals.”
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