Chipinge Cen­tral: Five years of ret­ro­gres­sion

The Manica Post - - Constituency Say/Profile - Ray Bande Se­nior Re­porter

WHEN the peo­ple of Chipinge Cen­tral con­stituency went to cast their votes for the har­monised elec­tions of 2013, hopes were high that the even­tual win­ner would come armed with knowl­edge of fostering so­cio-eco­nomic growth in dif­fer­ent sec­tors in the pre­dom­i­nantly agro-based econ­omy of this marginalised com­mu­nity.

Hopes were high that the House of As­sem­bly rep­re­sen­ta­tive would use his or her in­flu­ence to help im­prove the state of roads es­pe­cially in Chipinge town, an in­te­gral part of the con­stituency.

In­deed, hopes were high that in­fras­truc­tural de­vel­op­ment would be wit­nessed in and around the con­stituency that had been side­lined for years by the for­mer po­lit­i­cal ad­min­is­tra­tion.

But their hopes never came to fruition as the in­cum­bent Mem­ber of the House of As­sem­bly, Cde Ray­more Machin­gura (Zanu-PF) re­port­edly went on a sab­bat­i­cal soon after be­ing elected into of­fice.

Con­stituents from Chipinge Cen­tral told this pa­per that Cde Machin­gura did vir­tu­ally noth­ing for the bet­ter­ment of his con­stituency.

De­sire Dube of Gaza E said he only heard of the name but does not even know Cde Machin­gura.

“I have only heard that there is an MP called Cde Machin­gura but I do not know him at all.

I know I am not the only one be­cause I have also heard many peo­ple say­ing the same.

“Per­son­ally, I ex­pected him to be vis­i­ble on the ground and help peo­ple in this con­stituency in ar­eas of de­vel­op­ment but that never hap­pened. I think we made a mis­take as a con­stituency by vot­ing him into of­fice,” said Dube.

Ngo­nidza­she Mun­jokodi of Usanga sub­urb said the Mem­ber of the House of As­sem­bly did noth­ing to im­prove the wa­ter prob­lems that the peo­ple in Chipinge Cen­tral have al­ways been com­plain­ing about.

“We have al­ways been com­plain­ing about wa­ter prob­lems in this area and he (Cde Machin­gura) is well aware of that. He did noth­ing to help the sit­u­a­tion.

We did not hear him speak about the need to im­prove that yet those are the is­sues that I thought as our par­lia­men­tary rep­re­sen­ta­tive he would work hard to solve.

“We will cer­tainly re­mem­ber him as one of the MPs who did noth­ing for us dur­ing his term.

As a per­son we know him for be­ing re­served and that ac­tu­ally went on to be his ap­proach to things even after be­ing elected into of­fice,” said Mun­jokodi.

Chandaida Mutema of W Sec­tion of Gaza high den­sity sub­urb said he ex­pected the Mem­ber of the House of As­sem­bly to help in the im­prove­ment of the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor but that never ma­te­ri­al­ized.

“I thought Cde Machin­gura came into of­fice fully aware of the fact that Chipinge only has one hor­ti­cul­tural col­lege and there is not any other ter­tiary in­sti­tu­tion just like we see in other ar­eas.

This is an area that I thought he would pri­ori­tise but that was not the case.

“I am in the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor and we would have been happy if he had been vo­cal about the mat­ter yet that was never the case.

In fact, I can hardly re­call any is­sue that he was vo­cal about, which was meant to de­velop this area.

I guess he is one of those who slept on duty,” he said.

Richard Mlambo of Chipinge medium den­sity sub­urb said Cde Machin­gura was not vis­i­ble dur­ing the five years he had been the Mem­ber of the House of As­sem­bly for the area.

“We have never seen him car­ry­ing out his par­lia­men­tary du­ties in our area as we ex­pected him to.

I only got to know him at the fu­neral of a lo­cal pop­u­lar fig­ure where he was even­tu­ally barred from mak­ing a speech, as peo­ple were bit­ter about his fail­ure to rep­re­sent the con­stituency ef­fec­tively,” he said.

Es­ther Mh­langa of Dairi­bord Sec­tion of Gaza high den­sity sub­urb said Chipinge Cen­tral was now worse than what it was be­fore Cde Machin­gura be­came Mem­ber of the House of As­sem­bly.“I per­son­ally think Chipinge is worse than what is was be­fore Cde Machin­gura be­came Mem­ber of the House of As­sem­bly.

The roads have de­te­ri­o­rated and wa­ter prob­lems have wors­ened. For some of us who grew up here and used to see un­in­ter­rupted wa­ter sup­ply it is painful to see these peo­ple that we elect into of­fice fail­ing to live up to our ex­pec­ta­tions,” said Mh­langa.

Cde Machin­gura was hugely in­ac­tive dur­ing par­lia­men­tary de­bates and prob­a­bly his only mean­ing­ful con­tri­bu­tion was made dur­ing the Pres­i­den­tial speech de­bate in which he left the house in stitches when he al­luded to the fact that peo­ple who mis­be­haved in Chipinge risk be­ing pelted by fruits, not stones, given the abun­dance of fruits in the area.

“When you come to Chipinge and you mis­be­have; we do not throw stones at you but in­stead, we use fruits such as bananas and guavas.

We be­lieve that if we can have com­pa­nies like Cairns to come to my con­stituency, they will open up can­ning fac­to­ries,” said Cde Machin­gura dur­ing the Pres­i­den­tial speech de­bate.

Re­peated ef­forts to get Cde Machin­gura’s side of the story were fruit­less, as he con­tin­u­ally gave ex­cuses for not be­ing able to grant The Man­ica Post an in­ter­view.

His mo­bile phone con­tin­u­ously went unan­swered and when he even­tu­ally picked it on Wed­nes­day night, he told said that he was busy.“I am busy, call me later.

I can­not talk to you at the mo­ment be­cause I am very busy,” Cde Machin­gura said be­fore hang­ing up.

On Thurs­day morn­ing Cde Machin­gura said he could not field ques­tions as he was driv­ing.

◆ We give Cde Machin­gura a rat­ing of 3⁄10.

Cde Machin­gura

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