Patrick Chitumba and Munyaradzi Musiiwa
ECONOMISTS in the Midlands province expect President Emerson Mnangagwa to appoint a leaner Cabinet made up of ministers determined to turn around the economy.
President Mnangagwa dissolved Cabinet on Monday and is in the process of putting in place a new one. Midlands State University economist and senior lecturer Mr Francis Mhere said President Mnangagwa appears geared to set Zimbabwe on an economic growth trajectory.
“The recent activities in Zimbabwe that have seen him rising to the position of the Head of State and Government show that he has overwhelming support from both the local and international community. For his policies to be effective they have to be generally acceptable by all Zimbabweans regardless of race, tribe, and political inclination and therefore the need for a Cabinet that is well spread to include all people regardless of race, tribe and political inclination,” said Mr Mhere.
“For instance, he may want to pick a few who have not been associated with corruption in Zimbabwe. He may need people who may not have been associated with any looting of wealth and people who will be loyal to him and the country and get international acceptability.”
He said corrupt elements must not be included in the new Cabinet. Former Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce (ZNCC) president Mr Trust Chikohora said he was expecting a more progressive and transparent Cabinet.
“We do not expect the same people to be returned in the new Cabinet. There are ministers who were in Government who have been associated with lethargy and corruption. These are responsible for the economic situation that we have plunged ourselves in. The President promised to hatch a new Zimbabwe and that can be achieved by bringing in fresh people with progressive thinking who are achievers in their own right and who can boost confidence in Zimbabweans and the international community. We want ministers who can be trusted, who have respect for the principles of good governance and people who serve the nation,” he said.
In his inauguration speech, President Mnangagwa spoke of taking a new trajectory in terms of administration. “We expect people who have dignity and hard work,” he said. Political analyst Dr Eckson Zvenyika Mugari said he expected the President to appoint a leaner Cabinet comprised of technocrats.
Dr Mugari said there was no need for the President to appoint ministers as a form of reward for either the expression of loyalty or the role they played in bringing about change in the country. He said the spirit of entitlement can result in a bloated Cabinet.
“In my own opinion, the President in his inaugural speech emphasised the need to uphold the Constitution. According to the constitution, the President can appoint five ministers who are not from either the Upper House or the Lower House. Considering our economic situation we expect him to appoint technocrats based on their ability to deliver and not their political affiliation
“There are elections next year and the President should appoint a Cabinet that will make him win the confidence of the Zimbabwean citizenry across the political divide so that he can get another mandate. It should not be bloated. The President should not be guided by the principle of rewarding people based on the expression of loyalty because he cannot satisfy everyone,” he said.