Out of touch Emmerson Mnangagwa forces banks to pay for ZANU PF Conference Centre in Gweru

Posted: October 25, 2012 in Uncategorized

In a typical extortion case by ZANU PF big wigs, Emmerson Mnangagwa has allegedly forced three Zimbabwean registered banks to pay for construction of a conference centre in Gweru. Mnangagwa has commissioned designs for a new conference centre for the forthcoming ZANU PF conference in Gweru, which will be able to hold the 6,000 delegates expected to attend. He even said that he wants to use the state of the art designs to show off to the people of Zimbabwe and his own Midlands constituents in a statement of wastefulness and arrogance.

Extort the Bank – Pay the Chinese

The contact to build the centre has been awarded to a Chinese company who have already brought in 24 engineers from China to oversee the construction. They are going to be working around the clock to complete the project within 3 months.

The Chinese firm initially quoted over USD 8 million for the project, but accepted a final offer of nearer to USD 5 million. To finance the construction, Mnangagwa summoned the Chief Executives of CBZ, ABC and FBC, telling them that they would all be responsible for USD 1 million for the project and should release the money to the Chinese company via Midlands Development Association.

It has come to light that the bank managers said that the conference centre will not be economically viable as an ongoing concern but were not in a position to refuse Mnangagwa’s demands. Reluctantly, they agreed to supply the money.

Out of touch

By ordering the construction of this expensive conference centre, this expensive move demonstrates how out of touch Mnangagwa is with ordinary Zimbabweans. Despite a desperate economic situation in Zimbabwe, he has decided to go ahead with a project that will cost ordinary Zimbabweans, and will have no visible benefits. Zimbabweans are currently facing massive water shortages and ZANU PF big wigs like Mnangagwa are clearly not interested in solving problems that affect the people. To make matter worse Mnangagwa

“..Arrogant and out of touch”

and other ZANU PF big wigs have not put any of their own considerable wealth to this project, instead, relying on extortion which is further evidence of their greed. The banks are being forced to give money at a time when they cannot raise their capital as required and are not giving loans to ordinary Zimbabweans to grow their own businesses.

Power play and Chinese labour

Also, in what seems to be a show of power against his rivals in ZANU PF, Mnangagwa is building the conference centre in Gweru which is his homeland. Gweru is not a key city in Zimbabwe at the moment, meaning that the conference centre will have no long term future. USD 5 million is being spent on a conference centre that will be used once for party-political purposes and the question Zimbabweans need to ask themselves is what else could the government do with USD 5 million? I am sure there are a lot of community initiatives that can have more impact on improving people’s lives than spending this money on what is likely to become a white elephant.


Like any other Chinese construction projects, the work to build the conference centre will not bring local empowerment, as the Chinese company will be bringing its own labour with it. We have seen this before when the construction of the Zimbabwe National Sports Stadium was also completed using Chinese labour. This again is further proof of hypocrisy in ZANU PF whose leaders by day call for local empowerment and jobs for Zimbabweans while by night they sign deals to import Chinese labour. ZANU PF pressure groups on local empowerment like Upfumi Kuvatiki and the Affirmative Action Group are surprisingly quiet on these developments and many other project that involve the Chinese.

No people at heart

As well as the money required to build the centre, there will be a budget of over USD 2 million to meet expenses of the delegates, such as travel from the regions to the conference centre, accommodation, food and materials to be used at conference. All these expenses, which ZANU PF bigwigs are not paying a cent for, are further evidence that the party is corrupt and selfish in its nature. If at this crucial time where Zimbabweans are in dire need of basic necessities like reliable water and electricity supplies, ZANU PF leadership decides to spend millions on projects that have nothing to do with easing the country’s problems, then Zimbabweans must be prepared for a bigger battle in the upcoming elections. It is these choices that ZANU PF makes which must inform us about what kind of future leadership we want. We have a duty to inform our families, friends, neighbour, colleagues and all citizens we can reach about the things that our leaders do so they can make informed decisions about how to vote next year.

  1. Rejoice Ngwenya says:

    We hope it is not going to be a white elephant. Gweru needs a conference centre – but six million dollars? Diamond money is really working for ZPF!

  2. Ndabalizwe says:

    It will become a white elephant definitely for the can not withstand opposition politics! The end is nigh!

  3. nyasha says:

    or it will bring mcuh needed investment to a city that been ignored for a long time and devolve the hosting of conferences from central harare

  4. Mathula says:

    While I agree it will bring the much needed investment in Gweru, I disagree with the fact that we have to bring the Chinese labor as if we don’t have people who can do the job. What happened to those who need employment in the construction industry…

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