ZAPU president, Dumiso Dabengwa (pictured) on Tuesday launched his party’s election manifesto, with devolution of power and fight against corruption topping the list of priorities.
By NQOBANI NDLOVU
Dabengwa argued economic turnaround efforts can only be successful if there was zero tolerance to corruption, adding devolution of power was also necessary in ensuring equitable development across the nation.
“A Zapu government pledges to develop and implement a comprehensive and effective strategy to fight corruption, which will include inculcating a culture of zero tolerance to corruption at all levels of society.
“We will put in place measures to prevent, detect, investigate and prosecute perpetrators of corruption. We will also strengthen the powers of the [Zimbabwe] Anti-Corruption Commission by decentralising it to provinces so as to make it more accessible to a wider cross-section of the population,” he told journalists on Tuesday at the Bulawayo Media Centre.
Dabengwa said under a Zapu government, each province will have provincial assemblies responsible for provincial revenue raising systems and economic, social and cultural development.
“The current provisions of the Constitution (Chapter 14) on the devolution of governmental powers and responsibilities, although limited, provide a stepping stone towards a Zapu concept of devolution of power and should be implemented without delay,” he said
“Zapu, as a party, will fight against any constitutional Bill to kill the devolution provision because of lack of resources. It is common knowledge that available resources have been abused.”
Dabengwa said if elected into power, his government will reduce the number of provinces from the current 10 to five. Manicaland, Masvingo and Midlands provinces will remain unchanged while all Matabeleland and Mashonaland provinces will be respectively combined into one.
On land, Dabengwa said his government will audit the land reform programme with a view of curbing multiple farm ownership.
“Zanu PF captured the land reform programme and the classical examples are multiple farm ownership by Zanu PF bigwigs and the Mazowe saga where communities were forcibly removed from State land to pave way for the former first lady Grace Mugabe.
“Zapu’s land policy includes the equitable distribution of land, taking into account the agro-ecological endowment of the respective regions. We are going to put a limit on the size of land and number of farms owned by private individuals or companies,” he said.