Bulawayo Agenda’s statement on ZNA recruitment drive

bulawayo_agendaThe Bulawayo Agenda in response to an article entitled ZIMBABWE NATIONAL ARMY IN RECRUITMENT DRIVE IN MATABELELAND which appeared in The Chronicle dated, Wednesday 17 November 2010.

Bulawayo Agenda totally condemns the said selective recruitment drive for Matabeleland in its totality for these reasons:

1. We are not in a war situation. Our understanding of the role of the army is that it exists to defend the territorial integrity of the country and any said recruitment should be to this effect. We do not see any significant security threat to warrant fresh mass recruitment.

2. This is a plot to weaken the Matabeleland electorate through a postal vote mechanism. Voting of the military is highly vulnerable to manipulation and this would have an adverse effect on the political voice of the people of Matabeleland.

3. Why Matabeleland from all the regions in particular. We have seen Matabeleland being used as a political laboratory for all sorts of experiments and we feel this is one such project.

4. Matabeleland youths need to be absorbed by the virtually non-existent industries that now characterize Bulawayo and Matabeleland in particular.

5. Where will the money to pay these youths come from? More than 70% of the treasurys revenue collections are going towards the civil service wage bill which also includes ghost workers and this will add a bigger burden on the fiscus.

6. Matabeleland has more pressing priorities than employing its youth by the military. People of Matabeleland need water not the Army. Employ all these youths in the Matabeleland Zambezi Water Project than make them soldiers. We believe they will be used to perpetuate violence during elections, next year if they join the Army.

We would like to urge the youths to boycott the said recruitment exercise up and until issues raised above are noted. Youths should never be used for political again.

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