HomeEditorial CommentGovt must prioritise food, water

Govt must prioritise food, water

Political analysts generally believe that a new government sets the tone of its rule in the first hundred days in office.

The Standard Editorial

Zimbabweans too have adopted a similar stance, where they scrutinise their government very closely in that short period.

Unfortunately for Zimbabwe, the first 50 days have not given any hint as to what the new government’s priorities are. It is important to note that the country went 40 days without a government, meaning the new ministers really have to hit the ground running.

Zanu PF won the elections on the back of the pro-people policies it spelt out in its election manifesto; it must therefore follow through the promises it made.

There are two areas that need urgent attention and by which it will be judged on the hundredth day. About 2,2 million people are facing a food crisis and there is a water problem in urban areas, particularly in Harare and Bulawayo.

The food crisis has hit hard four provinces namely, Masvingo, Matabeleland North and South, and parts of the Midlands. The drier parts of Manicaland have not been spared either.

Government should move fast to import the staple maize and ensure it is equitably distributed in these areas. Since Zanu PF swept these provinces in the elections, it is hoped the distribution would be done in a non-partisan manner.

Government should also address the question of a permanent solution to the perennial food shortages in these areas.

The same should be said for cities and towns that have been hit by the shortage of water.

In the capital, Harare, the water shortage is mainly caused by old infrastructure and the lack of funding for water-treatment chemicals.

A huge amount of treated water is lost through leakages. Harare should address this problem quickly because, by simply plugging all the leakages, the supply of water improves significantly.

In its five-year life, the government must be seen to have come up with long-lasting solutions to the water crisis.

Dams that have been mooted ages ago should be constructed. In the Matabeleland provinces the Matabeleland Zambezi water project should now become a reality.

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