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Pre-paid water meter debate exposes bankruptcy of civil society

By Dr Qhubani Moyo

Tendai Carter Muchada a budding writer who also works for CHRA (Combined Harare Residents Association), one of the organisations under investigation by USAID on misappropriation of funds attempts to do some amateur critic of my arguments in support of pre-paid water meters and in the process gets over excited like a child to the extent of losing mind.

Qhubani Moyo
Qhubani Moyo

The typical primary school composition disguised as an article whose foundations had no content value on the issue of pre-paid water meters and does not offer any solutions to the proposals I make only help expose his bankruptcy making him appear more like a real caricature which I think he has confirmed himself to be.

Rather than making policy related intervention the writer starts by coining a personalised topic for his writing which shows from the very onset that his focus and obsession is to deal with the individual of Qhubani Moyo.

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While he can be forgiven for trying so hard and desperate to be seen to be arguing with the “champions league of Zimbabwean agenda setters” he should be reminded that he cannot just get there overnight.

His composition titled “Qhubani- wake up and smell the coffee” whatever that means is nothing but a heap of words that are devoid of content.

The composition whose title is a personal assault on me is clear indicator of how shallow and hollow the civil society organisations like his are and how they are dangerously misleading citizens for their personal benefits.

The heap of words disguised as an article with a title that is intended at attacking myself moves from the opening paragraph, meandering through the bushes of bankruptcy and comes to an ending that probably makes no one happy except the writer because of its emptiness.

From the beginning to the end the composition makes no contributions of any value but merely attacks the person for expression his views. The composition surely makes his former lecturers at Midlands State University embarrassed at their products and would certainly not want to identify with such as having gone through their hands.

The excitable fella is totally uniformed and unresearched on the operation of pre-paid water meters is living in denial when faced with facts that the only way of improving cash flow problems for the council and thus improve service delivery is to pre-pay for water meters.

In prepaying for the water that does not take away the 5000 litres given for free to residents which by the way are enough for use by moderate families. The pre-payments are only for the usage beyond the free allocation and in the case of Bulawayo calculated at 75 cents per 1000 litres.

Most households by the way use an average of 8000 litres meaning that they would only pre-pay for 3000 litres at 75 cents which would translate to slightly above $2 a month. Those who want to maintain usage at lower level can just live within the free allocation meaning that no one would go thirsty as you want to project.

You seem more concerned with ensuring that you keep your job at the residents association because you are not employable anyway else and the only way you can do so is ensuring that poor service delivery continues so that you can continue receiving donor funding that you want to abuse in the name of residents when it goes to personal usage.

Your pre occupation in writing your composition was not dealing with facts as presented by this writer but cheap shots using oversexed and therefore unjuicy and barren clichés of accusations that in presenting my arguments on the benefits of pre-paid water meters I am singing for supper in ZANU PF.

The offending statement assumes that I am a man of no means when, I have adequate academic and financial resources to provide myself with suppers the rest of my life.

Tendai seems to want to choose for me political associates and in so doing he wants us to believe he is a democrat. What democrat has no respect for other people’s political choices?

If I have chosen to work with ZANU PF as I have done what business Tendai has to do with it because I chose my own friends and who to associate it and it is only proper for the self proclaimed democrat to show his respect for diversity by respect of my political choices.

I need not explain myself to you or anyone when I choose to associate with whomever at any given time and when I do so I have sold out no one because I am only accountable to myself.

I was never hired or given a professional contract by you or anyone to be permanently based in some party beyond my interests. Similarly I have no issues with your association with MDC-T and the kind of commissariat work that you and your organisation have been doing to ensure that it stays as the dominant party in Harare.

I have no doubt and am tempted to discuss that part of the reasons for the investigations of disappearance of funds within some of your organisations are because you were a conduit for MDC-T funding and in the process of the transactions not all money could be accounted for because it was illicit funding for destabilisation of the government of the day against the provisions of the Political Finance Act.

Soon we may be dragged to make telling revelations of the networks of looting that characterise the movement of funds from donors in the name of doing work for the people but the funds find themselves transferred from one organisation with this relative to another with this relative and the follow-up looting sprees that are well documented by those of you who claim to be of high moral ground.

Sooner than later these illicit transactions which have become your trademark and expressed and characterised by your life styles will be a matter of public record and when it happens don’t say we did not tell you. Fore warned is for armed when you throw mud at some people be warned that the reverse process might be more vicious.

But again what you seem bankrupt about is that your participation in the campaigns for the MDC T were indirectly a promotion of the pre-paid water meters because the MDC T led council at least in Bulawayo had way back in 2013 passed a resolution for the pre-paid water meter installation.

This meant this was their policy position and when you encouraged the people to vote them you were actually encouraging them to vote for the pre-paid water meters. You are obviously suffering from a guilty conscience or maybe from downright poor political judgement and would want to blame others for your actions.

In speaking about the need to install pre paid water meters and explaining my reasons with clarity I am actually in solidarity with the people of Bulawayo and Harare who voted for the MDC T fully aware that it was for pre-paid water meters.

And how that translates to an attempt to endear myself in ZANU PF boggles the mind only reveal your childish excitement as budding writer in getting space in the media. If you were serious about the leftist policy whatever that means you would have known that in so campaigning for them you were working against them.

What comes out in your composition is sheer certified display of ignorance and I feel embarrassed for you. You heap words and come with no alternative except pass the blame to others for your actions.

One day when you are sober you can invite me to educate you on the pre-paid water meters subject. In the meantime you article was just empty, vacuous and of no value the nation and am sure after this you will see that it was not even of value to yourself profession and organisation.

Your limited reading probably because of your limited schooling which you seem not to appreciate has limited knowledge of vast literature and writing on the issues of fiscal transfer and revenue collection and in your writing you invite me to read some authors whose works I have never taken seriously in my whole academic studies.

Meanwhile I do join you in celebration of the victory of Chelsea in the Capital One Cup, the only sensible choice which you have ever made which connects me to you.

Dr Qhubani Moyo is policy and political analyst from Bulawayo East Constituency. He is contactable on [email protected]