Blessings Chidakwa and Leonard Ncube in Victoria Falls
PRESIDENT Mnangagwa yesterday said local authorities should be economic hubs with a transformative impact on the quality of life in communities as the country seeks to achieve an upper middle income economy by 2030.
He said local authorities have more sources of revenue that are untapped and challenged the rural councils to be more creative.
President Mnangagwa said this while officially opening the third edition of the Rural District Councils (RDC) chairpersons’ indaba in Victoria Falls. He, too, implored the local authorities to deliver as they have the capacity to make Vision 2030 a success or failure.
“We at the national level have interrogated this vision but it cannot succeed without the other tiers of Government, which primarily includes yourselves (RDCs). We must all recognise that every one of us at every level is critical for the success of our vision.
“This platform is thus important as it provides us with the opportunity to interrogate and reflect on issues related to equitable and inclusive growth, harnessing the resource endowments within our respective communities,” he said.
The President said the majority of the country’s citizens live in rural areas and eagerly anticipate socio-economic development to cascade to their areas.
“As leaders who preside over these communities you should be at the forefront of crafting innovative strategies which stimulate production, value addition and beneficiation of resources in the areas under your jurisdiction.
“We need you to focus on the resources available in your districts. As RDCs we speak of devolution, we have you in mind. My Government will continue to support local authorities through policy guidance, financial and non-financial support, capacity building and technical back-up to improve efficiencies within your sector,” he said.
The President reiterated his call for every citizen to participate in building the economy, saying no one should be left behind even at household level.
He challenged Ministers of State in every province to be pro-active in the devolution agenda saying they should be the ones leading in project identification.
President Mnangagwa also said in line with the new culture of dialogue there is need for increased collaboration, coordination and cooperation with internal and external stakeholders.
“It is equally important for RDCs to network and share best practices among themselves and with their counterparts in urban councils. Better service delivery and the speedy improvement in the quality of life of our people will be enhanced by such robust engagement within the sector, coupled with listening to the needs and perspectives of the communities we serve,” he said.
The Head of State and Government also warned those engaging in corrupt activities to stop as he had given “teeth” to the new anti-corruption commissioners that were recently sworn in.
“Please, all citizens be warned that acts of corruption will not be condoned or tolerated. l have created ‘teeth’ for the new team,” he said.
The President assured the nation again that Government will avail food to all communities in need following the drought that hit the country this year.
He also emphasised the need to have modern transport infrastructure as a key enabler in the transformation of the economy.
President Mnangagwa said he would be commissioning another batch of Zupco buses next week.
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