Mashudu Netsianda Senior Reporter
ZANU-PF has tentatively set December 11 to 16 as dates for its 17th Annual National People’s Conference to be held in Esigodini, Matabeleland South Province, where 5 000 delegates are expected to attend. The proposed dates for the annual indaba are however, set to be confirmed by the party’s Politburo at its next meeting.
Speaking during a ZANU-PF conference preparatory meeting at Esikhoveni Institute of Training in Esigodini yesterday, the ruling party’s secretary for Administration Cde Obert Mpofu said the party had activated its sub-committees, which are working tirelessly with other key stakeholders to prepare for the annual indaba.
“Preparations for our party’s national people’s conference are on course and the proposed dates are from 11-16 December.
“We, however, need to move with speed and the most important task at hand is the civil works which have to be completed as soon as possible. We should also take into cognisance the fact that the rainy season will soon be upon us,” he said.
Cde Mpofu said a project manager would be engaged to monitor civil works at the site of the conference.
“It is prudent that a permanent project manager be appointed on a full-time basis for the entire duration of the preparations and completion of the conference. Resources should be urgently allocated for this task and sub-committees which have direct interface with on-site preparations should at least be available on a weekly basis in Esigodini to assess progress,” he said.
“All bids for the conference should be submitted by 19 October to the finance sub-committee.
“Whilst our party procurement policy supports local suppliers, we should emphasise equality and capacity in this regard.”
Cde Mpofu said ZANU-PF would not tolerate corruption in the process of mobilising resources for the conference.
“In this new dispensation, our President and First Secretary of ZANU-PF, His Excellency Cde Emmerson Mnangagwa, has emphasised zero tolerance to corruption and therefore in the resource mobilisation for the conference, we need to uphold high ethical standards,” he said.
Cde Mpofu said ZANU-PF’s supreme decision making body, the Politburo, at its 321 Ordinary Session, resolved that the 17th national people’s conference should be held in Esigodini not Gwanda as previously indicated.
“Therefore this change should result in an increased rate of planning, organising and ensuring that we meet the deadline for the conference. Esigodini previously held a similar conference in 2005 and we hope that key lessons from that time should be taken into consideration in hastening logistical arrangements,” he said.
The party’s spokesperson, Cde Simon Khaya Moyo, said several themes for the conference have been submitted for consideration and now await Politburo approval.
“In terms of my sub- committee responsible for bringing about the theme of the conference, we have worked out a number of proposals which we shall present to the Politburo. I am quite certain that theme will capture the focus in terms of what the conference hopes to achieve,” he said.
“We are happy that the conference comes after a very successful outcome of the harmonised elections which we thunderously won. We are quite certain that that momentum should not be lost. We shall be giving out all the details after the next Politburo meeting in terms of the theme and other preparations.”
Cde Khaya Moyo said his department is in the process of addressing the issue of publicity materials, regalia and billboards.
He said some sub-committees had started presenting their budgets while others were still in the process.
“We are thinking of around 5 000 delegates and we should be able to meet the expectations,” Cde Khaya Moyo said.
He said yesterday’s meeting was meant to update members on progress in preparations for the party’s national people’s conference.
The meeting was attended by the party’s various heads of department among them the National Political Commissar Cde Engelbert Rugeje, his deputy, Cde Omega Hungwe, Cde Paul Mangwana (Legal Affairs Secretary), Secretary for Transport and Welfare Cde July Moyo, his deputy Cde Edna Madzongwe, Cde Victor Matematanda (Secretary for War Veterans, Detainees and Restrictees), Cde Pupurai Togarepi (Secretary for Youth Affairs) and his deputy Cde Lewis Matutu.
Others who attended the meeting were Cde Lovemore Matuke (Secretary for National Security), Cdes Josiah Hungwe and Dr David Parirenyatwa, who are heads of the departments Labour and Production, and Health as well as Cde Simbarashe Mumbengegwi who is the Secretary for External Affairs.