Gideon Gono's ZANU PF Appointment Reversed
Gideon Gono's appointment as Finance Secretary for ZANU PF's Manicaland Province has been reversed on orders from above, making it certain that he will now not be leaving the Reserve Bank as most of us had read. Mugabe would have lost a lot of face if this had happened because he takes little things like these as demonstrations of his power. If he says "Gono is not going anywhere. He has done no wrong, I said show me the wrong he has done", he does not expect to have to go back on that publicly. Hopes dashed, then.
Harare, Zimbabwe, 25 November 2009
Embattled Reserve Bank Governor Gideon Gono has had his appointment to the ZANU PF Manicaland Provincial Executive reversed on the order of the "national office" of ZANU PF.
Some in Zimbabwe and elsewhere will be disappointed. The appointment (Gono had been "co-opted, not elected, to the post of Secretary of Finance) had raised hopes that the Governor will now have to go, since his being a ZANU PF official would make it impossible for him to continue pretending being apolitical, which is required (nominally) for civil servants.
Basil Nyabadza, the ZANU PF Manicaland Province Chairman, issued a statement last night saying:
"We have since been advised that the governor is not available at this juncture to serve us as a province due to his enormous commitments at the national level.
This is in addition to the advice that the governor of the country's central bank ought to and shall remain apolitical in the manner he carries out his duties to the nation."
But the cat is already out of the bag.
Gono himself has said nothing. He has not disowned membership of ZANU PF, which has been exposed by his co-option in to the structures of that party.
Nyabadza himself says as a province they believed that Gono's services would have been more "impactful" if delivered from "a party angle."
It is a frank admission that they want to leverage any so-called success the Governor may have and use it to the advantage of the party. They would also have liked to continue enjoying the patronage that Gono dished out to the party during the heydays of the Reserve Bank, when it was more powerful than the Ministry of Finance.
But Nyabadza and his people fail to understand that Gono is no longer in that position, his wings having been clipped by Tendai Biti.
The MDC could still use the announcement of the appointment to ZANU PF to press ahead with the call for Gono to go. He has now been identified as a party functionary and we need professional objectivity at that Bank, which should serve all people, even those who support the MDCs, MKD etc.
By rescinding the decision, however, ZANU PF has signalled to Zimbabwe that news of the departure of Gono is premature. The action reinforces Mugabe's stance that Gono will not go anywhere because "he has done no wrong."
Mugabe objected publicly to the calls for the resignation or firing of the RBZ Governor by saying that his only crime was "to support Mugabe and ZANU PF."
Considering that Mugabe is all about "saving face", it would have been very difficult for him to backtrack on that stance.
Significantly, the Manicaland Province does not say who "advised" them against appointing Gono, only saying that the advice came from the "National Office." But we can be certain that it is Mugabe himself who has stepped in to save himself embarrassment.
So, for now at least, Gono stays. Just as Mugabe has insisted all along.
There are campaigns after all, to be funded, as ZANU PF wreaks havoc in the rural areas.
Gono, although he does not have a revenue stream anymore, has now resorted to taking funds put in his custody by Zimbabwe banks as part of Statutory Requirements and reserves required from them.
He claims he has taken this money to pay salaries and the like because he has no income anymore.
But we know that there really is no accountability at that institution and the people of Zimbabwe are being hoodwinked.
There is a reason why the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Act as ammended and passed last week also removed the requirement for the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Finance to sit on the new RBZ Board.
ZANU PF insisted on this only because they do not want oversight, proper oversight, at the Central Bank. Gono could still use banks' monies to fund the next ZANU PF "campaign" and no one will know a thing about it!!
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