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defiance is daft
August 08, 2012
What is it about
diamonds that evokes so much anger, conflict, contradiction
and controversy? And I thought diamonds were a woman-s best
friend! Tales of corruption, death, smuggling, gluttony, transfer
pricing and deceit are now an essential part of our news diet.
Tendai Biti, Zimbabwe-s Minister of Finance present
the mid-term fiscal review; I am left wondering whether he really
understands how ZANU-PF operates. Honestly, 'budgeting-
for money coming from ZANU-PF controlled companies and actually
convincing his boss, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirayi and the nation
that ZANU-PF will deliver. What a nerve he has!
the Southern African Parliamentary Support Trust [SAPST], "revenue
collections to June have totaled US$1.565 billion against a target
of US$1.838 billion implying a variance of US$244.2 million. The
bulk of this variance is accounted for by an under performance in
diamond revenue..." They raise another cruel paradox: "More
so given that diamond revenues are not coming to book, yet mining
sector growth is rather bullish. The issue here is that of corporate
governance in the mining sector". More diamond bad news: "US$600
million which was expected from diamond sales this year, only US$41,
6 million had been received during the first half of the year."
in the diamond sector? Why dilute such a brilliant analysis with
cheap political correctness? Considering the resource hemorrhage
that ZANU-PF has presided over the past 32 years, you could not
possibly summarise that in two words - corporate governance
- without sounding like a rural deep-tank clerk attempting
to invent a new pesticide!
labour of citizens of Marange, Zimbabwe-s heavily subsidized
water and electricity, sub-economic tollgate fees, public defence
forces, the public broadcaster, river pollution, soil degradation,
Chinese Imperialism - these are all the elements not calibrated
in the 93% variance advanced by SAPST. Moreover, of the 73% employment
costs attributable to public service, a good proportion of them
also go to servicing the same defiant militarised diamond sector
that disfigures the national revenue value chain.
Does Minister Biti have the answer to deal with these diamond cheats?
I doubt it, neither can Prime Minister Tsvangirayi. In fact, MDC-T
is now completely exposed. It is a matter of time before the 'party
of excellence-, sinks to its knees in despair in the face
of ZANU-PF diamond chicanery. Mutuso Dhliwayo of Zimbabwe
Environmental Law Association (ZELA) talks of how an "Africa
Mining Vision is an aspiration of the highest political leadership
to move into a new orientation of choices of mining policies and
institutional culture." He continues: "This is in line
with principles of the Africa Mining Vision which calls for an inclusive
mining sector in which all stakeholders have a voice and participate
in policy and decision making processes." This is the typical
NGO academic gibberish that proffers no solution for political thuggery
pervading Zimbabwe-s diamond business.
Like most egocentric,
politically-correct local 'analysts-, Dhliwayo picks
on Professor Welshman Ncube-s 'soft target deal-
- Essar/ZISCO - but fails to 'attack- ZANU-PF
for deliberately defying ethical business practice to stash diamond
revenue in a shadowy parallel government. The answer is found in
a near perfect democracy - like they have in Botswana -
where each and every mineral dime is accounted for in a transparent
market. Short of that, there must be a new struggle to recover our
diamonds from what writer Kamurai Mudzingwa terms 'an oligarchy
that specialises in looting their country-s resources.-
The people now know where their power lays - the Diamond Spring.
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