Pleading Poverty, Zimbabwe Plans A US$120 Million Parliament Building This Year

This is the current Zimbabwe parliament, a place filled with history and a perfectly acceptable home for our legislature. But no, Mugabe and Tsvangirai now want to build a US$120 million brothel somewhere in the Kopje area, motel and everything, to house an even larger contingent of MPs. The word "priorities" seems to mean nothing to these people, both MDC and ZANU PF. One is like the other and they are now cheering each other on in their glutton. Instead of tightening their belts, they are having their stomachs surgically expanded in order to gorge themselves

Harare, Zimbabwe, 10 January 2010

While teachers threaten to go on strike because they are being paid poverty wages, while nurses and doctors moonlight because government pays them slave wages, the Inclusive Government of Morgan Tsvangirai and Robert Mugabe has announced that it will build a new "state of the art" Parliament Building in Harare this year.

Finance Minister Tendai "Kiya Kiya" Biti confirmed yesterday that his supposedly broke government will indeed build the new parliament, which will also act as a brothel of sorts, since it will house within it a "motel" for out-of-town legislators when parliament is in session.

This Castle in the air is a Mugabe brainchild, which has been on the cards for nearly a decade now and the rush by the new members of MDC in government to fulfill one of Mugabe's long-standing wishes of having a state-of-the-art parliament is really misplaced.

Talk about wrong priorities.

If the government can not find money to pay civil servants proper wages and salaries, where are they going to find US$120 million for a new parliament building? And what message does that send to struggling civil servants who are doing their best for slave wages? The insensitivity and lack of clear thought is frightening.

How many drugs can US$120 million buy for Zimbabwe's hospitals? How many school classrooms can be built for that much? How many potholed roads can be repaired with that sum of money?

This obscenity is being justified on the grounds that Mugabe and Tsvangirai have agreed to bloat government. We now have 210 MPs and more than 90 senators, we are told. And this means we must now build a bigger and lavish parliament.

Perhaps the solution is to reduce the size of government. Reduce the number of MPs. But of course that is not going to happen. Instead, the new parliament building is being designed to house 400 legislators, meaning that these politicians have every intention of spreading their infestation, polluting our collective.

Tsvangirai, should he ever become president, will also almost certainly expand the number of seats just as Mugabe has done with the MDC's concurrence.

The reason is that, with more seats available in their respective "strongholds", these "gentlemen" will be able to spread their patronage wider, attract even more sycophants to sing their praises in exchange for room at the national feeding trough.

Apart from less than ten MPs from either side of the political divide, the people of Zimbabwe would not feel any difference should parliament be banned tomorrow. The MPs do nothing but hang around at beerhalls buying liquor for their supporters. That is if they even deign to so much as visit their constituencies outside of the election periods.

They deliver nothing. They watch their constituents suffer and gloat that they live better than the people they are supposed to be representing.

The greed and avarice permeates ZANU PF and MDC. There is no distinction. And we must now find money to build them a brothel in the Kopje area of Zimbabwe?

I would expect this level of selfishness from ZANU PF, but the announcement is being made by none other than Tendai Biti - the Great Black Hope of the MDC. Go figure.



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