Opposition leader pledges to revisit Zanu PF ‘mega deals’ if elected president

Makamba Busha
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HARARE – FreeZim Congress leader and presidential candidate Joseph Makamba Busha says, if elected president, he wants to re-open the much-hyped agreements entered between the Zanu PF led government and some foreign companies granted rights over the country’s vast resources under opaque arrangements.

The politician and businessman was speaking at a media briefing in Harare on Thursday as he launched his second successive bid to land the country’s biggest job.

Busha said the current portfolio of so-called mega deals touted as beneficial by the existing government were not beneficial to ordinary citizens.

“Currently, we got the land, but Zimbabweans are not empowered, we have the Chinese, Russians, and Belarusian that are being empowered in the farms while people are being forcibly removed again,” said the South Africa based politician.

Under the present administration, minority groups in remote parts of the country have experienced forced evictions from their ancestral land to pave way for foreign mining operations.

The lithium rush across the country has fuelled forced evictions on vulnerable communities by foreign firms with government approval.

Busha said if elected, he will prioritise the interests of the majority more than those of fortune seeking foreigners.

“We are going to be smart about it,” he said.

“We are not going to say all of a sudden everyone must go but we need to understand and engage those companies to say what is the benefit of the people.

“If you look at the current president of Botswana, he has just renegotiated the agreement between De Beers and the government of Botswana in terms of how they share the revenue.

“So, we possibly are going to follow the same moral where we will sit with those firms and be able to say what is being done and is it fair to us as Zimbabweans.

“Is the revenue sharing fair; we will engage productively and will make sure we reach an amicable decision.”

Busha also slammed the Zanu PF ruling class for living off taxpayers’ money for almost their entire adult lives.

“We have got an extractive system of governance that is not giving to the people, but just extracting from the people. That is going to come to an end.

“Those in Zanu PF in particular the leaders of the liberation struggle have never worked; they have survived on donor money during the liberation struggle.

“After the liberation struggle, they have survived on taxpayers’ money, they have never created anything.”

Busha used the occasion Thursday to unveil his party manifesto and nine national assembly candidates contesting in the August 23 poll. – ZimLive