By Nomusa Garikai- “These power cuts are already piling more costs in some hospitals such as Ingutsheni and Ekusileni Hospital that now have to rely on generators, yet fuel prices have been going up,” complained Bulawayo provincial medical director, Marphios Siamuchembu, in response to the now all familiar ZESA power cuts.
“The hospitals cannot do anything about load shedding and fuel prices but the government should just make sure hospitals are exempt from load shedding, or ensure that they have adequate fuel for back-up if they can’t be exempt.”
ZESA has been forced to switch off customers and ration supply because it is not generating enough to meet demand.
The power generating capacity the nation inherited from the white regime in 1980 is all there is.
Indeed, the power generation capacity has even dropped over the years as many of the generators are either unreliable due to age and or poor maintenance.
The Zanu PF government has failed to invest to meet the growing nation’s electricity power needs; any altogether familiar story.
Money that should have been spend building the country’s power generation capacity and other basic needs was squandered on such luxuries as the Blue Roof and extravagant lifestyles for the ruling elite. Mugabe’s Blue Roof mansion costed US$ 4 billion plus, enough to build, equip and commission Batoka Gorge Hydro – a second Kariba Hydro to the ordinary people.
The white colonial government would have commissioned Batoka Gorge Hydro in the 1970s if it was not for the civil war. The Mugabe regime should have built the Dam by the late 1980s if it was not for the corruption and mismanagement.
Think of the accumulated economic benefits to the whole nation of a second Kariba Dam pumping 600MW plus 24/7 for the last 30 years! Instead, the nation got the Blue Roof mansion which, like the rest Mugabe’s many of selfish projects is itself in any advanced stage of rot and decay.
And the nation is paying dearly for the criminal waste of money and opportunity. The chickens are now home to roost!
Director Siamuchembu is asking for hospitals to be exempt from ZESA load shedding as if hospitals can ever get all their economic needs untouched by the economic meltdown affecting the rest in the country.
No doubt, he is sold body and soul on President Mnangagwa’s Vision 2030, Zimbabwe attaining upper middle-income status.
A mirage since all evidence points to Zimbabwe sinking deeper and deeper into economic despair.
Zimbabwe is a pariah state ruled by corrupt, incompetent and lawless thugs who have rigged elections to stay in power.
It is near impossible to do business in such a corrupt and lawless country. And as long as Zimbabwe remains a pariah state, there will be no hope of meaningful economic recovery. None!
It is sad that intellectual like Dr Siamuchembu to bury their heads in the sand and ignoring the economic meltdown and human tragedy in the country caused by the decades of Zanu PF gross mismanagement, rampant corruption and rank lawless.
The nation has ignored the problem of Zanu PF misrule for decades and the nation has paid dearly for it in cash, lost opportunities and in human suffering and many lives lost unnecessarily. Enough is enough!
Forget asking for hospitals being exempt from ZESA load shedding, it is foolish asking for something that is not even there.
We, all Zimbabweans without exception, must demand democratic reforms and free and fair elections as the only way to end this curse of pariah state.
If anyone was ever going to hold the belligerent, pompous and tyrannical Robert Mugabe to respect the freedoms and rights of the ordinary citizens in independent Zimbabwe, then that could only be intelligentsia.
Fortunately for Zimbabwe, in 1980 the country had a sizeable number of very well-educated blacks. Unfortunately, they failed the nation in the principal task of restraining the arrogant Mugabe to keep him on the narrow and straight path.
Mugabe has never had any problems recruiting professional men and women to do his dirty bidding to establish and retain the de facto one-party Zanu PF dictatorship. Many joined out of the spirit of “if you cannot beat them, join!” Other just went along to get along.
Even those Zimbabwean intellectuals who have join the opposition, they too have not escaped Mugabe’s corrupting influence.
When it came to the critical task of implementing the democratic reforms, for example, even the likes of David Coltart and Tendai Biti failed to submit even one reform proposal in five years of the 2008 to 2013 GNU.
“Mazivanhu eMDC adzidza kudya anyerere!” (MDC people have learned to enjoy the trapping of power; they will never rock the boat!) boasted the Zanu PF intellectuals when asked why MDC were not implementing any reforms.
They were smart enough to know what Mugabe was playing at; they too had fallen for the same honeypot trap and never rocked the boat.
Today, with the country’s economy in total ruins, the political system in paralysis (both Zanu PF and the opposition has corrupt and incompetent thugs with no clue how to get the nation out of this mess), millions living in abject poverty and the whole nation standing at the very edge of the abyss; it is for the intelligentsia to snap out of sloth like slumber and stop the nation walking over the edge.
If anyone can save Zimbabwe from this man-made hell-on-earth we are in, it is the intellectuals, if only they will finally wake up now before it is too late!
“Hospitals must be exempt from ZESA load shedding!” Of course, everyone knows that hospitals provide critical and essential, life and death, service but if you’re not generating enough to meet essential the load then even hospitals will be switched off.
The very fact that even hospitals re being switched off underlines to sorry state of the nation’s power supply industry.
The decay and rot is not just in the power industry, it is everywhere – people like Director Siamuchembu must finally wake up and see the tragic mess we in!