STEPHEN CHADENGA IN GWERU
Opposition Zimbabwe Socio-Economic Democrats (ZSD) president, Nkosikhona Ndlovu (pictured), this week lambasted opposition legislators for accepting the US$40 000 loans from the government.
President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration offered a US$40 000 housing loan to each sitting lawmaker, US$500 000 to ministers and US$350 000 for deputy ministers.
However, Ndlovu said the opposition MPs had joined a bandwagon of self-serving.
In an interview this week, Ndlovu said the money could have been used to improve the health service delivery system that has deteriorated over the years.
“It is well and fine when opposition leaders are lambasting the ruling party (ZANU-PF) for mismanagement of funds and looting but when their palms are greased they find words high and low to justify it all,” Ndlovu said.
He added: “For a nation whose people are living in extreme poverty, the US$14M would have gone a long way in bringing the much needed development in our country but alas our legislators sat down and awarded themselves housing loans to further enrich themselves whilst the ordinary Zimbabwean is struggling to meet health care needs.”
Ndlovu said Zimbabweans continue to be a subject of ridicule in foreign lands where they seek medical treatment whilst politicians give little attention in uplifting the health sector but continue to blame the country’s woes on sanctions and other external factors.
He said it was unfortunate that over the years the taxpayer continued to face the burden of meeting the debt incurred by politicians as they awarded each other some benefits.
“It is only when we vote wisely that we put an end to these shenanigans,” he said.
He added: “2023 elections are around the corner and we urge Zimbabweans to vote out these self-centred and self-serving government officials.”
The move to accept the loans also attracted criticism from the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa labelling MPs from his party who accepted the offer as selfish.
But last Wednesday while addressing a press conference CCC chief whip Prosper Mutseyami dug in and said there was nothing wrong in accepting the loans.
He said lawmakers have been offered such loan schemes before.