VP Mphoko sends out SOS…Appeals for private sector support in industry revival

Phelekezela Mphoko

Phelekezela Mphoko

Pamela Shumba Senior Reporter—
THE government is working with businesses to revive industries in Bulawayo in an initiative aimed at restoring the city’s status as the country’s industrial hub, Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko has said. In a speech read on his behalf by Industry and Commerce Deputy Minister, Chiratidzo Mabuwa, at the official opening of the Chicken Inn Drive Through at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) in Bulawayo on Friday, VP Mphoko said he was working with companies to craft strategies to resuscitate businesses in Bulawayo.

The Chicken Inn Drive Through is the first to be opened in the southern region of the country. “I’ve been working with the business community of Bulawayo to craft strategies of resuscitating businesses in Bulawayo so that Bulawayo can become the business hub of Zimbabwe once again.

“I call upon the private sector to respond positively to the government’s initiatives of improving the economic and investment environment in the country. “The private sector should come on board and work with the government to alleviate the serious effects of drought by taking their social responsibilities seriously,” said VP Mphoko.

He said the drought that has slowed down the government’s thrust towards economic recovery through Zim-Asset must be tackled by all: the government, the private sector and the United Nations (UN) agencies in the country.

“I’m pleased to point out that the Zimbabwe United Nations Development Assistance Framework (ZUNDAF) is in place and the government, UN agencies and other stakeholders are working very well together to address the effects of drought and other Zim-Asset targets.

“The drought mitigation measures have to target the most vulnerable of our society. Companies, especially those in the retail sector, should strive to ensure that food commodities are affordable and accessible,” said VP Mphoko.

He congratulated Simbisa Brands for opening the new Chicken Inn Drive Through in response to the 10 point plan for economic growth outlined by President Mugabe last year to buttress Zim-Asset.

“I’ve been informed that the first Chicken Inn outlet was opened in Harare in 1987 and now Simbisa Brands has 200 stores in Zimbabwe, employing 2,500 workers, with 754 employed in 64 stores in the southern region.

“I’ve been further informed that the company pays out close to $15 million per year to its workers. It’s therefore gratifying when companies like Simbisa are forging ahead and expanding their operations’,” said VP Mphoko.

The official opening ceremony was attended by senior officials from the government, Bulawayo City Council and Simbisa Brands.

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  • Mpisi

    Senior government officials opening a drive through? Amazing!
    This man is not so bright, daft is the word.
    Most industries that were in Bulawayo were into manufacturing. Experience everywhere in the world has shown that once you lose your manufacturing industry base you never get it back. The customers whom you have been supplying your goods move on either to alternatives, substitutes etc. Even in highly developed economies this holds true. The US has watched helplessly the loss of the manufacturing base to China. Once you lose your business to China there is no way you can get it back. Zimbabwe today is flooded with cheap Chinese products. If one were to attempt to resuscitate the manufacturing industries , that means the prices must be far lower than the cost of the alternative , and that in its self is a tough cookie.
    Now this bull crap that Bulawayo Indunstries will be restored to their former glory is just horse manure. Mpoko can you stop this rubbish !

    • Doctor Do little

      This is typical Zanu. When the try to build a house they start with the roof. Those that made Bulawayo the industrial Capital had reason to do that. They were residing in Harare but identified the strategic position to access Central Africa and the rest of Africa as this region. Politics and industry don’t mix. Now these people after 36 years have an awakening to realize all this after the destruction and mayhem they have caused? Hard to believe. Bulawayos destiny depends on the change of politics in this country. It is hard to see this happening. We will see more chicken Inn type projects where peopl will be employed to “MANUFACTURE” meals.Pity you cannot export FRIED CHICKEN.

      • vusumuzi

        Tell them madoda. Me thinks that the only way to rescucitate Bulawayo is to embark on the following ; get strategic industries that supply neccessities established by Bulawayans . Things like Mealie-mealing , Flour milling , dairy farming , chicken and beef , then we emabrk on a Buy-Bulawayo campaign. We can tap in resources from our industroius children outside. We cut ties with those Headquatered in Harare because they have shown disdain toward this region. Simple. Also to boycott Harare -controlled restaurants including drive inns . Limangaliswa yini?? They have shown us disrespect by closing down our employment centre;Belmont , so sibancengelani? Let us buy and support local , and to those who embark on the businesses please maintain standards or even better them , its possible . Advertise your business and proudly tell us ngeka Mthwakazi we will campaign to get everyone to buy from you. Wake up YOUNG PEOPLE of the region.

        • Doctor Do little

          Well spoken. If you really think of it we have been alone for the past 30 some odd years and we are still standing. We need to start walking. Forget about the wheeling and dealing in Harare. Concentrate as you say on these projects that we can do.Support local is a good idea. Most of all get our young people trained, skilled and working. All this from Mphoko might be well intentioned from him but will his colleagues let what he suggests happen? I doubt it.

      • Mixed Race

        Well said my friend.It is a disgrace to have such a company claiming to be improving what used to be a regional industrial centre destroyed by these illiterate cheap politicians.The VP should note that retail shops including his own are exploiting the masses here in Byo eg long life milk produced locally is sometimes more expensive than imported brands.I have challenged his local managers in Byo to explain why the low fat milk is more expensive than the full cream type.The excuse was that because the process used to remove the cream is long and expensive,which I replied with these facts-Where do you send the removed cream which could be used for butter and other items to cover for the extra process? I then asked them to tell their suppliers that their excuse was null and void because they make more money from cheese,butter and other products from the cream..I am happy that a week latter the two brands charges were the same,however to pay $1.25 for locally processed milk is still too expensive.
        The few ramaining big companies in Byo are struggling without real assistance from the central government .Visit these companies and see that they are running at about 30-40% of their full capacity.Why operating at that level? They have no revenue and their equipment is old and Zesa charges and ZIMRA are burdening them financially. Most of them have reduced their workers’ salaries by 30% and never got bonuses as opposed to government workers who do not generate funds but just spend it.

  • Nkunzemnyama

    Mboko is just talking hot air.

    • Top S’gelekeqe

      Izithutha zikithi kwaMthwakazi lezi ezingo Nkunzemnyama, osomlandela kuphela – selize likopa amaShona ukuthi “Mboko”? Yini yonaleyo? What language is that?

      • Nkunzemnyama

        Isithutha ngunyoko nja.

        • Top S’gelekeqe

          Kubuhlungu ukubanguwe. Yini I “Mboko”, mfowethu? Lulimi bani lolu? Lafa elikaMthwakazi. Akuze la eMzansi – uzohlala umnyaka oyi one nje kuphele. Ngiyakutshela, uzobugeza bonke ubuShona. Buyophela du du du. Uzoba right!!

          • Nkunzemnyama

            Udakiwe msunukanyoko, kutshoni ukuthi ‘I izithutha zikithi’,,,,,,, Kwa Kwa Kwa. Trying hard to be a Ndebele) spokesman wena swina-ndini.

          • Top S’gelekeqe

            Bonke nje vele osomlandela yizithutha; iziphukuphuku; ngempela izibhanxa futhi.

            Maar; Ga re tlapeng bo Shona ganyane? O re ng? sithi ukugeza ubuShona kancane phela? uthi kanjani mfowethu?

  • Obert

    If the speach was read on his behalf, then he did not say it. The matter was so unimportant that he could not be bothered to come in person. We do not need to be bothered with something he does not even believe in. SHAME on them.

  • Umajodo aliwambisa

    he is just blowing his trumpet and yet he cannot move from the hotel where he is lodging Shame on him