Hundreds of people attended the inaugural Chivi District Zim-Asset conference held at the district offices on Saturday where a plan of action was discussed to enhance the status of the semi-arid region.
The conference held under the theme: “Developing Chivi in line with Zim-Asset” was attended by potential investors, people from Chivi who are successful in their different fields, politicians, businesspeople and members of the public.
Infrastructure development was identified as the major priority, with investors invited to work with the locals to enhance access to schools, clinics and other social services.
“The food cluster is one of the major provisions of Zim-Asset and already you can see that our district is facing hunger due to lack of rains this season,” said Chivi Rural District Council chairman Cde Killer Zivhu in his address.
“We have to start looking at ways of how we can enhance food security in this district. We need to be pro-active otherwise we are going to be found wanting on the food cluster. Those who will be tasked with working on that aspect will have to move with speed to make sure that food is available.”
Cde Zivhu said by 2017, the district would have done some development on every cluster in Zim-Asset before an assessment is carried out to address remaining areas.
He urged people from the district to work hard to ensure that they do not depend on donors, most of which came with ultra motives.
“We have things which we can do for ourselves without asking for help,” said Cde Zivhu. “All these things like rehabilitation of roads, are contained in the Zim-Asset. Our clinics are in a deplorable state as well as our schools.
“So, we do not need to wait for help to enhance provisions of Zim-Asset in this district. We cannot wait for President Mugabe to come from Harare and move Zim-Asset for us. He played his part by giving us this economic blueprint and it is now up to us to make sure that it is successfully implemented in our area.”
Cde Zivhu said community leaders and politicians from the district should start working on programmes that produce results.
Several speakers were lined up at the conference, with lawyer and former Chivi Central legislator Paul Mangwana speaking on linking Zim-Asset to the new Constitution.
He said Zim-Asset was the best document that protected the interests of Zimbabwe which are also enshrined in the new Constitution.
Chivi North legislator and Deputy Minister of Youth Development, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Cde Mathias Tongofa addressed the conference on the social services sector of the Zim-Asset, while his Chivi South counterpart spoke on the food security sector.
An investor in the tourism sector, Mr John Kirsten said the conference opened up the district to further investment.