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MPS: check your greed

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I’m feeling rather ragged this morning after a night of tossing and turning.

I guess reading The Economist’s Book of Obituaries at 10pm didn’t help, but nor did the 4 gunshots at 11:23 or a suspected attack from a tick or other associated pet vermin between the sheets at 12:01. After shining my mobile phone torch between my legs and other interesting places and getting the all clear on the vermin front my mind settled back on Zimbabwe. I started thinking of Tom Soper, a young man recently severely injured in a car accident. It seems like, at this stage, he’s paralysed from the neck down. He’s 37, a husband and father of two. I don’t know the full circumstances of the accident but what I do know is that the traffic lights at the intersection where the collison occured had not been working for some months. Of course working traffic lights don’t mean no accidents but they certainly help make our roads safer. Over the last several years we’ve experienced a devastating failure of infrastructure and service provision and delivery in Zimbabwe. Non-working and malfunctioning traffic lights might seem a low priority on our long list of Things To Get Working Again but when you give a moments thought to Tom Soper and the many other people who have been injured or killed on our roads, traffic lights become a much more serious issue.

I get more than uptight when I think of Zimbabwean MPs demanding US$30 000 car loans when in the majority of cases a US$10 000 car would do the trick except perhaps for Mr MP in Binga. Because in order for us to get things working again in Zimbabwe we all need to be watching our behaviour, monitoring our greed, and instilling fiscal responsiblity in our lives – MPs included. How about some of the money for these oversized car loans going to getting our roads safer?

And of course those of us living in Harare realise that there is ONE traffic light that absolutely never malfunctions. It’s the one on the corner of 7th Street and Tongogara Avenue. I mean what would the guards at State House do if that particular intersection became congested and mayhem ensued like at numerous other spots in the capital city – they wouldn’t know which way to point their bayonets.

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