‘Roll up sleeves, get to work’
Farirai Machivenyika Senior Reporter
PRESIDENT Mnangagwa yesterday challenged the recently constituted Cabinet and the leadership in the public sector to maintain the country’s development momentum established during the first term of the Second Republic, saying Zanu PF’s overwhelming victory in the recent harmonised elections was an endorsement of its policies.
The President said this while giving his key note address during a high-level retreat for new Cabinet ministers, deputy ministers, permanent secretaries, chief executive officers and chairpersons of parastatals and local authorities to give his strategic vision towards the attainment of Vision 2030.
President Mnangagwa laid out the vision at the onset of his first term in 2018 of creating an upper-middle income society by 2030.
He said yesterday’s meeting was aimed at developing a common understanding of his administration’s people-centred transformative agenda following his and the revolutionary party’s victory in the August 23 elections.
“The overwhelming endorsement of the party by the people is recognition that the Second Republic has made remarkable achievements on its policies and programmes to better the lives of all Zimbabweans. We here gathered, have the weighty obligation to maintain this momentum for sustainable national development,” President Mnangagwa said.
A number of landmark development projects were initiated during the first term of the Second Republic that include roads and dam construction, development of power stations and expansion and resuscitation of old and establishment of new mining projects among others.
President Mnangagwa said the second term of the Second Republic must reflect the country’s determination to heighten the country’s socio-economic development agenda through achievement of high impact results despite the challenges that are posed by illegal sanctions.
President Mnangagwa, flanked by Vice Presidents Constantino Chiwenga (left) and Kembo Mohadi (right), sing the national anthem at the official opening of the high level Government meeting in Harare yesterday
He said the focus was now on work and achievement of the country’s development goals following last month’s harmonised elections.
“The second term of the Second Republic must, therefore, reflect our determination to leapfrog the socio-economic development, modernisation and industrialisation of our country, through high impact results.
“As we do so, I exhort us to take pride in that we are Zimbabweans, a unique and resilient people, descendants of the Great Munhumutapa. Although we are under the albatross of the heinous illegal sanctions, this must never limit us. We must have a mentality that this is normal and achieve even greater success. The innovation and ingenuity that has seen us realise unprecedented results, across all sectors, should be scaled up”.
The President added that while Zimbabwe can benchmark and learn from other jurisdictions, it must however, remain cognisant of its identity and only adopt practices that enrich the realisation of the country’s own vision and national priorities.
“Our people deserve quality, affordable and accessible services. Under our watch, as Members of the Executive, more of our people must be taken out of poverty into prosperity, especially the vulnerable, women and youth. To achieve this, servant leadership, continuous learning and the responsive implementation of policies and projects remain integral.
“Further, we must work with a great sense of urgency, unity of purpose and seamless synergies. Unity among ministers, deputy ministers, permanent secretaries and senior officials is critical. You have to complement each other. This country belongs to the people and not to us. In whatever we do, let us respect the people, especially older people because their perception of Government is based on who they come into contact with. Hence, if you are arrogant, they will think that we are all arrogant; personally, I am not arrogant. You must be humble and simple. Never abuse the people.”
President Mnangagwa said the country must leverage on the various comparative advantages that it has developed over the years to accelerate growth while enhancing the country’s competitiveness and scale up the realisation of sustainable development that leaves “no one and no place behind”.
“Government must continue to create an enabling environment for investment. It is my expectation that, over the next five years, Government business will be anchored by the “Whole of Economy and Society Approach to Development”.
The President said an open-door policy must be the norm and not an exception, hence stakeholder engagement and dialogue had to be promoted.
“You, the incoming ministers and permanent secretaries, will be measured by the agility and innovativeness towards accelerating our economic growth, modernisation, industrialisation and global competitiveness.
“It is not business as usual. Hard honest work should be engrained at every level of our Government. We must collectively implement bold policies to achieve impactful results. It is essential that the public sector now shifts from reporting on activities and tasks, to reporting on results, outputs and outcomes. Our institutions, systems and processes will continue to be strengthened through the Integrated Results-Based Management System”.
President Mnangagwa said the implementation of the digital agenda must be accelerated so that public services are offered online for the people’s convenience and outlined projects that Government will implement.
These are; Accelerator projects such as Gwayi Shangani Dam, Kunzvi Dam, the Beitbridge-Bulawayo-Victoria Falls highway, drilling of 35 000 boreholes in villages; the Government Excellence Model underpinned by research, science, technology and innovation, high standards of operations and performance awards; as well as improving Zimbabwe’s competitiveness.
Government will also continue to intensify its development work in areas that include among others; consolidating food security and sovereignty through higher agricultural production and productivity, as well as mechanisation and modernisation of the sector; improving social services, education, health and utilities across the nation; enhancing the transport system and other infrastructure, in both rural and urban communities and ensuring that the country’s rich mineral resource base benefits the people.
“We must also continue to enhance good corporate governance, entrench transparency and accountability, as well as generate value for money to the citizenry. It is incumbent that we extend our reform process to the public entities to guarantee their viability and profitability,” President Mnangagwa said.
The fiscal and monetary policies, he said, should foster economic stability and predictability as well as spur confidence among citizens while industrial development and productivity as well as import substitution strategies would also be intensified.
“The High-Level Forum on Public Sector Reforms and the Tripartite will continue to play a pivotal role. Furthermore, the framework being used for implementation of the NDS1 must be strengthened for the monitoring and evaluation of the achievement of Vision 2030 targets.
“To enhance inclusive participation of all the stakeholders in the economy, ministers and permanent secretaries must be agile and provide the requisite leadership. Participation in NDS1 thematic and technical working groups must be taken seriously and meetings, timeously convened.
“Dereliction of duty in this regard will not be condoned. You are all directed to entrench the spirit of collaboration, partnerships and joint programming with all stakeholders.”
President Mnangagwa said the ease of doing business reforms continues to increase both local and foreign investments adding that sectors which remain burdened by numerous and overlapping legislative and regulatory processes, as well as licences, fees and taxes charged by ministries, departments and agencies, must be urgently attended to.
Government, he said, was a creation of Zanu PF and the people and its work should always be informed by the devolution and decentralisation agenda.
“Government blueprints, programmes and projects must answer to the needs of households, villages, wards, districts and provinces. Provincial Development Plans must, thus, speak to our devolved systems.
“Henceforth, let us go to our stations with mindsets committed to wholeheartedly serving the people of our great motherland, Zimbabwe. I will not accept the “shef-shef” mentality. We are servants of the people and must manage Government affairs with humility and servant leadership. We are a Government from the people, by the people and for the people and remain guided by the ideology and policies of our party, Zanu PF. Patriotism, loyalty, integrity, unity, love, harmony and hard honest work in this regard, are paramount,” President Mnangagwa said.