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Election freebies

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Politicians are like salesmen. Once the merchandise is sold and the money’s in the bag, the after sales service is a pain in the back. Elections are the only time you hear a politician plead and swear with the dead ancestors for support. The country is blooming with rainbow colors of election giveaways and something to put on at night to beat the winter chills, and to cover your head when you endure long hours of rhetoric in the blistering sun.

Giveaways come in various forms. Recently I was reading an article in the press about another election freebie announced by the Minister of Local Government. The local authorities are going to write off water debt. Though it could be a welcome gesture, the timing to write off water bills dating back to 2009 raises eyebrows as to whether this is another election gimmick by the revolutionary party. People now know the repercussions with comes with freebies of elections as history has shown that after being voted into power the same Minister will just recommend a hike in utility bills making the situation worse than before. If the Minister is really sincere about the plight of the Zimbabwean masses why didn’t he advise local authorities to relieve residents of the burden of paying for services long ago, when residents were drinking sewage and going for months with dry taps. Water is a human right but in the past five years it has become a luxury to some citizens of this beloved nation. So maybe these free for all gimmicks should not be limited to water only but also to the country’s sole provider of energy – Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority – which has been overcharging and switching off residents for bills inherited during the Zim dollar era.

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