Greedy CCC MPs threw out their moral campus and fell for honey traps
Citizens of Zimbabwe are urging the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa to recall all his MPs for secretly cutting a deal with the Ministry of Finance which saw them pocketing US$40k under opaque circumstances.
The plundering of the scarce US dollar by members of parliament which sucked in CCC MPs who were voted to the August house on a high moral ticket were exposed recently by the celebrated journalist Hopewell Chin’ono.
Chamisa issued a guarded condemnation of party MPs who have joined the queue to receive government’s US$40,000 windfall issued generously to each legislator in unsolicited loans.
“Chamisa must just recall all his ‘CCC looters’ from parliament. We can’t have characters who are too quick to throw away their moral campus through the window at the slightest opportunity to loot state funds at such a grand scale as citizens starve to their skeletal selves,” fumes Tambanavo Chamanyawi, a Cape Town based Political commentator.
Continues Chamanyawi: “MPs who rode to parliament on the wave of a high moral fibre can’t be allowed to cut secret deals with Zanu PF apparatus and pocket US$40 000 each at a time when the majority of citizens can’t even afford one decent meal a day,”
He added: “These chaps are a mockery of what they stand for and are worse than Zanu PF.”
Another Zimbabwean Chapo Sibanda lamented the easy trap which reduced CCC MPs to the level of outcasts a few months away from parliament.
“CCC MPs failed to resist the seduction of mammon, literally sentencing themselves to outcasts imprisonment which they will never walk out. They have gone down in Zimbabwe history as Saints that betrayed ‘a heavenly mission’ bestowed on them and elected to dine with the devil,” said Sibanda in a statement to Zimbabwe Observer.
The extravagant parcelling out of the funds by Treasury in a country battling massive poverty and a poor health delivery system, among some of the ills, elicited public outrage.
While critics were ready to excuse Zanu PF MPs whose party has long been condemned by opponents as corrupt, opposition CCC legislators came in for some harsh criticism for alleged hypocrisy after the party has cast itself as a people centred outfit.
Among those who have seen everything wrong with MPs accepting the government’s unsolicited gifts was Chamisa who said there was everything wrong with public representatives putting their own aggrandisement ahead of the rest.
“Wrong leaders usually have wrong priorities. The role of a government is to address citizens’ most urgent and pertinent needs,” Chamisa posted Wednesday on his Twitter handle.
“When this is abandoned, such a government merits replacement. Any government that prioritizes ‘chefs’ over citizens is not fit for purpose.
“In any public office, any decision that prioritizes self over the served is morally wrong, especially in a context where poverty pervades with citizens so hard pressed and in circumstances of lack,” said Chamisa.
Cabinet ministers were the biggest beneficiaries of the government loot after they were each awarded a hefty US$500,000 each while their deputies got US$350,000
Analysts believe that the US$40,000 per MP was a masterstroke manoeuvre to silence opposition MPs from speaking out against the massive perks given to ministers and their deputies.
The US$40,000 loans given to the 350 member legislature totalled over US$14 million.
When a social media user asked Chamisa if it was morally right for lawmakers to accept US$40,000 when the public health system was in shambles, he responded, “It’s wrong morally and ethically.”
Only one CCC lawmaker, Rusty Markham, reportedly refused to accept the government loot which sent social media Wednesday buzzing with disgust.
Asked to comment on why he rejected the government windfall, Markham declined to comment, saying he was not yet issuing public statements over that.
Outspoken Norton legislator Temba Mliswa defended fellow MPs who accepted what the public feels is an unsolicited bribe by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.