Believe it or not, March 4, 2018 marked the first 100 days of President Mnangagwa in office. And we the Zimbabwean people, the President’s employers are obliged to give an on-the-job performance review.
This report card takes a sincere, honest, and novel approach to evaluate his performance. The report card has another purpose as a starting point for discussion and debate among Zimbabweans.
This report card bases its information on the mnangagwameter website. The website contents helped us evaluate the government in the six crucial areas of governance, economy, social issues, monetary policy, industry and commerce, and health care. This is the first installment of articles reviewing his success or lack thereof on the six crucial areas.
The first 100 days have been trying and testing as the new government comes to grips with the enormity of the governance task before them. President Mnangagwa aims to put in place a governance system that efficiently delivers public services and promotes ease of doing business in a transparent and accountable manner.
1. Leaner & Efficient Government
A raft of policies were introduced to remove functional duplication’s, improve efficiency, and also contain unnecessary expenditure.
- Reduced the bloated Ministerial posts.
- Retired public service staff above the age of 65.
- Introduced a voluntary retirement scheme.
- Abolished 3 739 youth officers posts.
- Treasury strengthened monitoring of public expenditure.
- New chart of accounts and migrated to accrual accounting.
- Reduced no of vehicles issued to senior government officials.
- First class travel permitted only for the Presidium.
- Introduce smart technology.
- Migrate from labour intensive to ICT-based security systems.
- Recycled tried and failed Ministers.
- Appointed some Ministers who have been linked to corruption cases or have faced graft allegations in the past.
- Senior civil servants over 65 years still in service, eg. Tobaiwa Mudede.
- Bureaucracy is still huge and unaccountable.
- President Mnangagwa has undertaken efforts to address the problem of corruption through a number of legislative, administrative and monitoring initiatives.
- He has put in place some major structural and institutional actions to prevent corruption and deepen transparency. These include:
- ZACC anti corruption courts in 10 provinces.
- Arrests of several high-profile figures on allegations of corruption.
- Clamped down on police roadblocks.
- Established toll free line to report corruption.
- NPA, ZACC and ZRP to publish crime and corruption reports quarterly.
- Mandated Ministers to declare assets.
- Establish audit committees in all ministries.
- Public Finance Technical Response Unit to follow up Auditor General’s Reports.
- Strict adherence to Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Act.
- Strict adherence to Debt Management Act.
- Gave foreign currency looters a three-month moratorium to return the looted funds.
- Governments political will to uproot corruption has been called into question.
- Arrests are mostly driven by political motives rather than a zero-tolerance approach towards corruption.
- Inability or unwillingness to penalize high profile corruption – Zero conviction rate.
- Failure to institute a commission of inquiry into the missing USD15 billion diamond revenue.
- Loss of faith in ZACC – People who expose cases of corruption have been arrested instead, Reward Kangai is a case in point.
- No public disclosure of Minister assets declaration.
- Declaration of assets is rendered useless if it is not supported by a statutory act.
3. Bills & Acts of Parliament
- Some of the laws on our books are laughable. Others have no place in a modern and democratic Zimbabwe.
- Draft laws which were stalled during previous government going through the paces in National Assembly.
- The land commission bill complete, awaiting President’s assent and gazetting as law.
- National Assembly went into recess, leaving in abeyance several crucial legislation’s.
- We have not seen moves to repeal or amend archaic and repressive acts and rules.
- Failure to align the PFM Act, Citizenship Act, Immigration Act, Official Secrets Act, Police Act, Public Order and Security Act to the new constitution.
- It continues to be a matter of concern, however, that several key legislation’s are still pending. These include: electoral amendment act, public health bill, Public Entities Corporate Governance Bill, and Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company (Debt Assumption) Bill.
- Presidium and Ministers should publicly declare their assets.
- Declare corruption as a national disaster.
- To restore public confidence, anti-corruption dragnet has to be cast wider and not be a witch-hunt of political opponents.
- Exhibit no fear or favour in penalizing high profile corrupt individuals.
- Enough budgetary provisions be made to increase financial resources for ZACC, NPA, and Auditor General.
- Make public disclosure of externalized funds that were reportedly returned.
- Institute a commission of inquiry on the missing USD15 billion.
- Expedite passing of outstanding bills in National Assembly.
- Repeal AIPPA, POSA and Broadcasting Services Act, in full or to revoke specific clauses.
- Government should communicate plans, explain decisions and highlight achievements.
- Government should revamp all websites, and constantly update information.
- Introduce and strengthen grievance redressal processes on public services
– Vusi Nyamazana