Residents demand more funding for devolution

Residents demand more funding for devolution

Finance Minister, Mthuli Ncube

By Letwin Mubonesi

Bulawayo residents have called on Finance Minister, Mthuli Ncube to allocate more resources towards devolution during a 2022 national budget consultative meeting held by the Mthuli Ncube to ensure its full implementation in line with the constitution.

Devolution is provided for under chapter 12 of the constitution, with section 268 of the charter providing for the establishment of provincial councils. However, there is no enabling Act yet, to operationalise devolution despite government approving principles of the Provincial Councils and Administration (Amendment) Bill.

In 2021, Ncube allocated $19, 5 billion towards devolution, to be shared among the country’s 10 provinces but Bulawayo residents ask for more funding.

Devolution should be the top priority of the national budget to enable its implementation.

There is only one thing holding the country back from progress, and that is non-implementation of devolution; even the electoral reforms will be useless without implementing devolution.

Zimbabwe Coalition on Debt and Development (ZIMCODD) representative Yollander Millin said the budget was not enough to cater for Bulawayo’s budget.

“The 2022 budget should provide more money for devolution. The budget allocated to devolution is not enough to cover Bulawayo’s budget which requires $27, 4 billion. Local people should benefit more from these devolution funds. People opted for devolution and that stance must be adopted through adequate budgetary allocations,” Millin said. 

Residents said there was need to allocate more money towards health, education and infrastructure development for they are crucial in day to day running of the people’s lives.

Moreover, underfunding of the country’s social services has led to the collapse of the country’s infrastructure, especially the health sector which has been hit by staff shortages as well as drug shortages.

Nyari Mashayamombe

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