By Nhau Mangirazi
HURUNGWE– Some villagers here have challenged National Association of Non-Government Organization (NANGO) to remind Government to honor promises made to stabilize the economy last year and make a reality check for improved communities.
Speaking during a one day workshop organized by NANGO as watchdog on implementation of Transitional Stabilization Program (TSP) for improved, accountable and effective developmental outcomes, some villagers who gathered at Karereshi area within Hurungwe Ward 11 said the Government has failed to honor its promises on health, governance and accessibility of food aid and inputs.
Some villagers painted a gloomy picture for suffering ‘in silence’ without access to better healthcare facilities, food aid that is done on political side with ruling party Zanu PF being the major culprit.
They further complained of unavailability of clean water, poor road network and declining education standards.
NANGO Northern Region coordinator Charity Terera highlighted the program, in earnest but the heat turned on Onias Munamati (monitoring and evaluation) officer after spelling out TSP objectives and challenging citizens as witnesses of improvements on services delivery, health, food security and other service deliveries.
The hell broke loose with villagers taking turns blasting the Government for its failure to meet targeted goals.
Headman Chawona Chambati challenged NANGO officials to document citizen’s concerns without bias.
Don’t Lie Mr. Government- headman
He charged, ‘Please my son, can you get a real video or audio recorder as we give you our answers that we want to say to Government. We believe jotting down notes will see some important points being missed. You are here on behalf on the same Government that lied to us, go and tell them that they must honor the promises they made in 2018 about economic stability. What they are doing now is bringing instability in the country. The year 2020 is a few days away and what miracles are they going to perform to revive the economy, health sector, improve food security among other challenges that we are facing here and elsewhere. Tell Mr. Government not to lie to us. We can’t have an old rag using new cloth to make a latest fashionable dress,’
Another villager, Tobias Musaranhanga alleged that Members of Parliament for Magunje (Hon Cecil Kashiri) and Hurungwe West Hon Mary Mliswa-Chikoka are no longer accessible to them
‘Both of them want us to speak to them through personal assistants for an appointment. Why are they creating barriers to communicate with them,’ he added.
Jane Mupango complained of water crisis.
She said, ‘There is one borehole around yet the disabled, elderly have no means at all to get clean water from,’ she noted.
Several participants decried that Hurungwe Rural District council as service provider was being arm-twisted politically.
‘The last time gravel road linking Chambati-Karereshi was graded is when former MP Severino Tall Chambati fought it out with Temba Mliswa then under Zanu PF ticket. Nothing has been done as the road has been neglected. We have no one to ask as the councilor claims it is within council plans but for how long?, asked another villager Rodgers Rumba.
Takesure Musiiwa who facilitated the training workshop called on citizens to make peace and shun violence.
Misinformation aid violence
‘As much as we feel being shortchanged by politicians and service providers, let us engage them regularly so that they listen to us. Let us not lose hope or use violence but make it peacefully. Of late, we have witnessed violence at family, community and national level due to misinformation. When you complain that government is denying you food, research on what criteria is used for the program so that you are well informed. Let us all create a peaceful environment for development of our families, communities and nation at large. Violence is retrogressive and has negative impact on development,’ said Musiiwa.
The meeting was held during 16 Days of Activism against Gender based Violence commemorated internationally.
However, Hon Mliswa-Chikoka denied that she has created barriers to talk to everyone.
She said she is ready to engage anyone for developmental programs around the province.
‘My office’s mandate is better service delivery. Individually I have challenged all councils, local authorities to be accountable and improve service delivery by shunning corruption and abuse of office. Also MPs must be available so that we give feedback to our constituencies of what is happening in parliament,’ she said in an interview.
Finance minister Prof Mthuli Ncube had to introduce TSP due to come to an end next year to bolster confidence from investors but it has suffered stillbirth due to socio-economic and political crisis affecting the nation.
Promises made included easing cash crisis that remains unresolved, access to better health facilities, drugs although health sector is facing challenges after Government fired some doctors who downed tools demanding improved working conditions among other necessities.
Also the program focused to revamp road networks around the country, revive mining ventures and improved food security but this remain a pie in the sky and unachievable by President Emerson Mngagwagwa government facing international isolation.