New Zimbabwe.com

Speaker bemoans ignoramus MPs, urges minimum qualifications

By Robert Tapfumaneyi


Victoria Falls: Speaker of the national assembly Jacob Mudenda has bemoaned lack of depth and economic literacy among his MPs.

Mudenda was addressing some local and foreign chief executive officers gathered for the 6th edition of the CEO Africa Roundtable conference in Victoria Falls Thursday.

The Zanu PF top official went on to prescribe constitutional amendments that would make it a requirement for one to be a holder of a recognisable academic qualification before becoming an MP.

“With all due respect, economic literacy in my Parliament is low, it’s very low,” Mudenda said.

The Speaker said some of his colleagues did not even know what the words “budget” and “budget deficit” meant and yet they were expected to deliberate and pass the national budget in Parliament.

He said most MPs could not even articulate and interrogate issues.

Mudenda singled out ex-finance minister Tendai Biti and his Public Accounts Committee as among the few who could articulate matters to do with the national budget.

Biti had just given a presentation on the budget.

Mudenda lamented the country’s constitution which only says one must be “21 years and older, registered voter, citizen of Zimbabwe” to become MP.

“…Only three qualifications, that’s all!” he said.

“Intellectual and professional capacity is an issue. Now that’s what you give me to work with!”