OPPOSITION politicians and residents have bemoaned the slow pace taken by government in relocating the Matabeleland North provincial government from Bulawayo to Lupane.
by LUYANDUHLOBO MAKWATI in Lupane
A tour by Southern Eye established that the multi-million dollar government complex, which was now complete with all the required facilities in place, was gathering dust and turning into a white elephant, as there has not been any progress for some time now.
MDC-T organising secretary, Abednico Bhebhe said President Robert Mugabe had alienated “everything that was against him, including projects in Matabeleland North”.
The new Lupane government complex
“Matabeleland North is lagging behind due to Mugabe’s insincerity,” he said.
“He is not interested in Matabeleland and its people, so what more of projects?”
Lupane was declared the provincial capital in 2000 when it was granted town status and government launched a number of infrastructure development projects, but a majority of them have been neglected over the years.
A resident, Zibusiso Ncube, said locals were hopeful the completion of several government projects and the relocation of the provincial government to Lupane would create jobs for them.
“Our jobs are being done by people in Bulawayo, while we remain loafers. We demand the government completes these structures,” he said.
Another resident, Nkosibisa Ncube, said: “We have confronted our local leadership and the same song is sung every day that the Treasury has not allocated funds.”
Vezigama Ndlovu noted that the Chinese embassy, which only started the construction of Kusile Primary School last year, had already completed the project.
Incomplete projects include the water purification plant, whose construction started 10 years ago, but is still to be commissioned, as it is not connected to the electricity grid.
The government complex is only left with a few final touches, while the Resident Minister’s office is almost complete.
However, there was little progress on government staff houses that were constructed by the public works department.
Matabeleland North Provincial Affairs minister Cain Mathema refused to speak to Southern Eye.
He accused the newspaper of misquoting him.
Provincial Administrator, Latiso Dlamini was unavailable for comment.