PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa recently dispatched a high-powered Affirmative Action Group (AAG) to Binga district, in Matebeleland North province, on a mission to ensure what it would take to modernise the area, with most necessary infrastructure firm in place.
The AAG was formed in 1994 with the purpose to promote the lot of the indigenous people of Zimbabwe.
According to Clifford Hlupeko, secretary general of the AAG, instructions by Mnangagwa took them to Binga, with the view to sample out the opportunities available in the area.
Initially, the group was disappointed to realise that most investment opportunities in the area had been taken up by the enterprising Zambians.
“The AAG descended in Binga on May 15 (Saturday) and was led by the organisation’s president, Mike Chimombe.
“We were disappointed to realise that most investment opportunities had been taken up by Zambians.
“Accompanying the president were three of his deputies, namely Passion Java, Anastencia Ndhovu and Mabhuto Moyo.
“I, Hlupeko, completed the delegation,” he said.
“We went to Binga at the behest of (H.E Emmerson) Mnangagwa who, after our meeting with him, wanted to know our findings, including why Binga was still legging behind.
“President Mnangagwa’s desire is to see Binga transformed into a tourism and industrial hub.
“Binga is pregnant with resources and has the capacity to leap frog many established towns and cities.
“People in Binga need to be empowered,” Hlupeko said.
“Some of the challenges that confront Binga today are its poor road networks which deter easy accessibility to the area by investors, who stand ready to ‘invade’ the area as soon as things are in place,” added the secretary general.
AAG also deplored the lack of financial support for the people of Binga by the local banking community.
Upon the delegation’s return from Matebeleland North, Mnangagwa also stressed on the need for Empower Bank to generously rally behind the youth and women in the province.
The delegation also discovered that
permits for fisheries were too expensive and that the local authority should ensure prices went down.
“Fees for fisheries are simply too high.
“There is also a serious lack of commercial accommodation in Binga.
“Youth and women should be empowered so that they can produce whatever they deemed fit along the Zambezi escapement,” Hlupeko added.
The AAG leadership then pledged six fishing rigs to the people of Binga.
“All challenges faced by the people of Binga were compiled and presented to Mnangagwa.
Before the delegates left, about 10 school-going kids were awarded scholarships by Java, one of the organisation’s vice presidents.