CABINET yesterday approved a litany of measures meant to strengthen under-performing parastatals such as Air Zimbabwe, the Grain Marketing Board and Zesa Holdings.
Addressing journalists soon after the Cabinet meeting, Information minister Monica Mutsvangwa said emphasis was put on parastatal reforms to make them more viable and self-sustainable.
“Following a presentation by the Minister of Transport and Infrastructure Development (Joel Biggie Matiza) and cognisant of the urgent imperative to rebuild the national airline, Air Zimbabwe, Cabinet resolved as follows: to proceed poste-haste with the acquisition of the four Boeing 777 aircraft from Malaysia and to work on the expeditious delivery of the Embraer aircraft purchased in the United States of America,” she said.
Matiza dismissed reports that some of the planes acquired from Malaysia were sold off after Air Zimbabwe failed to pay the balance.
As for Zesa Holdings, Cabinet approved the move to merge all the different units into a single vertically integrated company, with the subsidiary companies becoming divisions of the new enterprise.
The Electricity Act will be amended to cater for the changes, while a reputable human resources consultant would be hired to help in the restructuring exercise. Powertel will be moved from Zesa Holdings and merged with Zarnet and Africom.
As for GMB, it will be split into two entities; an arm responsible for the strategic grain reserves and the second arm would be a commercial business unit, operating as Silo Food Industries.
Government also assured that it has adequate food reserves to mitigate against hunger.
Also, Cabinet undertook to assist businesses which lost stock during the recent violent protests, which later turned into an orgy of looting and arson.
Mutsvangwa said an ad-hoc Cabinet committee to deal with the matter was set up and tasked to expeditiously work out the finer details and modalities of the fund.
The committee will present its findings at the next Cabinet meeting.
The government also approved the urgent disbursement of $2 million towards the repair of damaged infrastructure due to a fire that gutted the Mbuya Nehanda Maternity Wing at Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals.