We demand answers

EDITOR - I am utterly depressed by the growing tendency among those in high positions, especially government officials’ failure to answer critical questions raised by journalists in time.

More often than not, when queried about critical issues, the officials are either evasive, arrogant or they send the journalist from pillar to post, until s/he gives up as nothing materialises. I have also realised, most hide behind the finger by asking for questions in writing via email, after which they sit on them, hence, more often than not, we get, “…had not responded to questions by the time of going to print”.

As a nation, we need answers from the authorities. These critical issues should be clarified, as they, not only inform the public of what’s going on, but create a transparent system where, for example, taxpayers know how much of their money is spent and on what.

In addition, a culture of transparency and accountability inspires trust and confidence by the public, stakeholders and potential investors in both private sector and state institutions.

Sweeping critical issues under the carpet simply further reinforces the scourge of corruption that has paralysed our nation and dampened public trust in national institutions.

Some critics and perpetrators are quick to point to bureaucracy and try to hide behind its facade in order to cover up their dirty tracks and gross incompetence. But bureaucracy is not the problem. Rather it’s a question of human attitudes and aptitudes that determine and underpin its efficiency. Our greatest problem lies in Zanu (PF)’s entrenched patronage system where people are hired on the strength of their connections, rather than their abilities. This then gives birth to arrogant, sacred cows.

For instance, the Registrar General Tobaiwa Mudede says he does not discuss issues in the newspapers, when quizzed on the alleged payment to Nikuv by his office to effect electoral fraud. We still need to know why and where did all those millions of dollars came from, when government claims its coffers are dry regarding funding of farmers and a third of our population who go to bed on an empty stomach.

It’s only those who have skeletons in their closets who are evasive or arrogant. – Tich, by email

Post published in: Letters to the Editor

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