Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Do we need deputy ministers?

There is consensus among Zimbabweans that the improvement in the country’s economic fortunes will hinge on the Cabinet to be appointed by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa with Zanu PF spokesman Simon Khaya Moyo at State House
President Emmerson Mnangagwa with Zanu PF spokesman Simon Khaya Moyo at State House

We agree with Zimbabweans from various sectors and from the ruling Zanu PF party itself who believe that only a youthful and energetic Cabinet with the right skills can pull out the country from the economic abyss it has been stuck in for several decades.

Given the foregoing, it goes without saying that Mnangagwa has an onerous task to appoint a Cabinet that will win the confidence of Zimbabweans who are impatiently waiting for an economic turnaround.

In our paper yesterday, we carried a story, quoting Zanu PF sources, claiming that old ministers who form the bulk of the outgoing Cabinet will be dumped and be reassigned roles at the ruling party’s headquarters. We hope and pray that Mnangagwa will have the courage to carry this through as most of the ministers in the outgoing Cabinet have gone past their sell-by dates.

We also urge Mnangagwa to take seriously the overdue call by the Women in Politics Support Unit for him to appoint a 50/50 Cabinet in line with gender parity as enshrined in Zimbabwe’s Constitution which calls for both men and women to be accorded equal opportunities in political, economic, cultural and social spheres.

The failure by the president to include a woman in the presidium has justifiably incensed women rights activists. As such, Mnangagwa has to demonstrate his commitment to gender parity by including many women in his Cabinet.

Mnangagwa has no choice but to seize the moment. This country needs a lean Cabinet made up of the right people who should ideally be technocrats. For example there is no longer any justification for the Finance ministry to be given to a lawyer with no history in the world of economics.

To revive our economy which is in the intensive care, we need a Finance minister with the right experience and knowledge to prescribe the right antidote to our convulsing economy.

Among other things, State enterprises and parastatals have to be commercialised or reformed without further delay and more importantly, real investment has to be attracted as opposed to the Mickey Mouse foreign direct investment that our leaders routinely shout about from roof tops.

Additionally, given the economic rut we are in, is there no longer any justification for appointing deputy ministers who don’t sit in Cabinet?

Mnangagwa has to show leadership by resisting the urge to retain the inconsequential deputy ministers for the sole purpose of rewarding some of his supporters. Daily News