Early Xmas gift for chiefs

Levi Mukarati in Bulawayo
Government has secured all-terrain Isuzu vehicles for chiefs and will hand them over in two weeks, a Cabinet minister has said.

At the Annual National Council of Chiefs Conference here yesterday, Local Government, Public Works and National Housing Minister Saviour Kasukuwere said, “We had fruitful deliberations during the Conference. We agreed with various economic ministers who responded to issues affecting the chiefs. “We acknowledge that the chiefs had no transport; we will give them Isuzu trucks in the next two weeks. They should come to Harare to get their vehicles.”

Minister Kasukuwere said his ministry would engage the Provincial Assembly of Chiefs over their welfare and powers of their courts.

Chiefs Council President, Chief Fortune Charumbira, said traditional leaders and Zanu-PF were inseparable.

“Zanu-PF fought for the land of which we are the custodians, so how then can anyone expect us not to support the party that made sure the land we preside over is returned to us?

“I am not ashamed to say we support Zanu-PF because chiefs and the ruling party are inseparable. We know that the 2014 Congress elected President Mugabe as the Presidential candidate. So, we are saying come 2018, we are supporting President Mugabe through and through, and we are assuring the President of overwhelming victory.”

Chief Charumbira said chiefs would not engage in factional fights.

He also said, “We want to thank you, Your Excellency, for your commitment and dedication to working with chiefs. You have given our courts judicial powers that have given us authority and you have ensured that we remain the custodians of the land. The recognition has seen us getting a salary while recently, our headmen got an allowance.”

The two-day conference was themed “Promoting traditional leadership practices that safeguard culture and heritage for sustainable rural development in line with the Zim-Asset blueprint”.

Vice-Presidents Emmerson Mnangagwa and Phelekezela Mphoko also attended, as did other senior Government officials.

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