By Audience Mutema
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration has abandoned veterans of the country’s liberation struggle and needs to copy from other countries that have social safety nets to carters for those that sacrificed their lives for their nations, Zanu PF Buhera South lawmaker Joseph Chinotimba has said.
Contributing to debate of Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube’s mid-year fiscal policy review and supplementary budget, Chinotimba demanded that Treasury issues a blanket order allowing war veterans to import vehicles duty free.
“Nothing has been done to improve the lives of the war veterans,” said Chinotimba.
Former President Robert Mugabe’s run-in with the former fighters signaled the beginning of the end of his rule and Mnangagwa might be treading on thin ice.
Chinotimba gave examples of countries in Africa and beyond that have standing social safety nets to cater for the welfare of veterans of different wars.
“I want the Finance Minister to include it in his mid-year budget that the war veterans should be allowed to buy vehicles duty free, even in America, Namibia and South Africa war veterans are a priorities and are allowed certain benefits. Our war veterans are suffering,” he said.
He added: “I want to thank Minister of Finance for reinstating the duty free for those people with disabilities but we also have war veterans who are disabled they must be allowed to import cars duty free.”
The Zanu PF lawmaker said the former fighter sacrificed everything for Ncube and others to be able to work in a free society.
“For you to be there, it is because of the war veterans. Some of them are blind while others lost life as well as limbs to liberate us. We should take a leaf from America which has the war veterans association for World War ll and in Namibia where they have a war veteran’s social service.
“As Members of Parliament, we represent people and this is what our war veterans have told us they want from government,” he said.