Cabinet battle looms

Cabinet battle looms
Published: 19 May 2017 (137 Views)
GOVERNMENT has virtually admitted that the country's economic blueprint, the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (ZimAsset), has all but failed and is now dead in the water. This has prompted the introduction of stop-gap economic programmes to salvage a semblance of success from the discredited blueprint ahead of next year's crucial general elections.

This comes at a time conflict is brewing in cabinet over ZimAsset and the "command economy" programme which some government officials are touting in the wake of what they claim to be a success story - command agriculture.

ZimAsset is anchored on free market economy enterprise whereas the command economy is a socialist relic in which the state as the main driver of production and distribution.

Some ministers say if the command economy is to be implemented full swing, it will undermine and displace ZimAsset without cabinet approval.

ZimAsset, which was derived from the Zanu-PF 2013 elections manifesto, is mainly associated with the Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC) and minsters such as Jonathan Moyo, who is a known critic of Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa. Mnangagwa is the driving force behind the command economy programme, bringing a factional dimension to the conflict, although policy differences are also a major source of the problem.

However, there is consensus in government that the targets set under ZimAsset are now out of reach given the dismal performance of the economy since Zanu-PF controversially won the 2013 elections.

The ambitious programme, which is supposed to guide the government's economic development thrust until December 2018, requires funding of US$27 billion and, among other deliverables, aims to create 2,2 million jobs by 2018.

Under the programme, government projected 7,7% average annual GDP growth between 2013 and 2018, with peak growth targets of as much as 9,9% in 2018.

However, limited funding capacity, policy inconsistencies, an underperforming public sector and poor corporate governance, among other reasons, have hampered the programme, forcing the government to come up with crash economic programmes.

In an interview this week on the sidelines of a United Nations media workshop on development reporting in Nyanga, the director of implementation, monitoring and evaluation in the OPC, Anderson Chiraya, said government had reviewed downwards all the priorities of the ZimAsset clusters due to a lack of funding.

"Having evaluated that most of the things require funding and that we are only left with a year to 2018, government reviewed all the priorities downwards," Chiraya said. "The blueprint has been reviewed for 2017 to 2018 and priorities have been scaled down so that we can achieve what we can manage between now and 2018.

"Government has had serious fiscal challenges and the bulk of the money to implement ZimAsset was supposed to come from development partners and this did not take place."

Chiraya also said challenges which constrained ZimAsset implementation include, among many others, included "depressed economic performance and the liquidity crunch, lack of initiatives that could lower the wage bill and lack of effective policies for plugging revenue leakages and promoting accountability as persistently highlighted by the auditor-general."

The results-based economic turnaround agenda, which was centred on the Zanu-PF election manifesto, is built around four strategic clusters that were meant to enable Zimbabwe to achieve economic growth and reposition the country as one of the strongest economies in the region and Africa.

The four strategic clusters are: food security and nutrition, social services and poverty eradication, infrastructure and utilities, and value addition and beneficiation.

The climbdown comes at a time most Zimbabweans are reeling under the worsening economic meltdown characterised by a severe cash crisis and uncertainty over the bond notes which evoke sad memories of the traumatic Zimbabwe dollar era.

In its largely unrealistic 2013 election manifesto, Zanu-PF promised to create 2,2 million jobs, but instead the country was hit by massive company closures and retrenchments. In addition, Zanu-PF pledged to unlock economic value of US$1,8 trillion while pledging that the economy would grow by an average 6,6%, but this has proved to be pie in the sky.

The current economic meltdown is reflected by the high unemployment rate, which stands at a staggering 95%, according to the International Labour Organisation.

So far this year, at least 236 companies have shut shop, resulting in the loss of hundreds of jobs, according to the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions.

- the independent

 0

You May Like These Videos

Comments

There are no comments.

Latest stories

Strange condition afflicts Nyanga family

by Staff Reporter | 20 August 2017 | 121 Views

Anti-Grace Mugabe war vets leader granted bail

by Staff Reporter | 20 August 2017 | 74 Views

Grace Mugabe attack, Robert jnr causes miscarriage

by Staff Reporter | 20 August 2017 | 132 Views

ZimJustice in Bulawayo to meet unfairly treated workers

by Tendai Ruben Mbofana | 20 August 2017 | 53 Views

The first lady Grace Mugabe to admit she has a behaviour problem

by Themba Mthethwa | 20 August 2017 | 73 Views

Disgraced First 'Lady'

by ZimVigil UK | 20 August 2017 | 90 Views

Reptiles and Eagles in High Noon

by Dinizulu Mbikokayise Macaphulana | 20 August 2017 | 53 Views

Poem; Tambo yemagetsi

by Nkosilathi Emmanuel Moyo,Snr | 20 August 2017 | 41 Views

Zodwa Wabantu to lead Samba Night party

by Staff Reporter | 20 August 2017 | 50 Views

Outrage over Grace Mugabe's SA episode

by Zodwa Wabantu | 20 August 2017 | 67 Views

Zanu-PF factions fight over Mahofa burial

by Staff Reporter | 20 August 2017 | 61 Views

First Lady should lead by example - Linda Masarira

by Stephen Jakes | 18 August 2017 | 478 Views

Njelele must be protected- Zanu PF youth member

by Stephen Jakes | 18 August 2017 | 244 Views

Gokwe, Gutu youth pledges to uphold peace ahead of the 2018 elections

by Stephen Jakes | 18 August 2017 | 179 Views

Harare mayor, MDC-T leadership clash

by Staff Reporter | 18 August 2017 | 259 Views

Cancer cases on the rise in Zimbabwe

by Staff Reporter | 18 August 2017 | 204 Views

Bosso, DeMbare pull out of tournament

by Staff Reporter | 18 August 2017 | 192 Views

Econet launches new credit scheme for civil servants

by Staff Reporter | 18 August 2017 | 139 Views

85% of Zimbabweans consult prophets, traditional healers

by Staff Reporter | 18 August 2017 | 144 Views

Grace Mugabe's sons were not using drugs - AfriForum

by Staff Reporter | 18 August 2017 | 375 Views

Teacher kidnapped, tied to tree, raped for 5 hrs

by Staff Reporter | 18 August 2017 | 190 Views

Pastor sprays anointed perfume into congregants' mouths

by Staff Reporter | 18 August 2017 | 163 Views

Man (26) thoroughly beats up his mother for not paying his rent

by Staff Reporter | 18 August 2017 | 180 Views

What I Learnt From My Most Outstanding Learner

by Mthokozisi Gwizi | 18 August 2017 | 123 Views

I will not vote for a Zezuru president in 2018 - Mliswa

by New Zimbabwe | 18 August 2017 | 152 Views

No immunity for #GraceMugabe, says Dirco

by Staff Reporter | 18 August 2017 | 224 Views

Zimbabwe invokes Grace Mugabe diplomatic immunity

by Staff reporter | 16 August 2017 | 560 Views

'Zimbabwe most hackable country'

by Staff reporter | 16 August 2017 | 315 Views

Grace Mugabe's victim won't drop charges

by Staff reporter | 16 August 2017 | 539 Views

'I'm not political,' says Mudhara achauya hit maker

by Staff reporter | 16 August 2017 | 400 Views

Woman surrenders goblins

by Staff reporter | 16 August 2017 | 458 Views

Kombi driver barred from driving

by Staff reporter | 16 August 2017 | 218 Views