The government’s poor financial position has resulted in its usurpation as the caretaker of people’s welfare by non-governmental and religious organisations during this lockdown period.
A variety of such private institutions have taken it upon themselves to support the vulnerable as the government has been found wanting again.
The $18 billion economic and recovery stimulus package which it launched has been dismissed as a mere fictitious gimmick as time is moving with nothing happening on the ground.
Vulnerable members of the society who were promised RTGS$200 cash injections are yet to get anything with Finance Ministry officials drawing fire by alleging the use of a special algorithm to select beneficiaries.
“We are yet to receive anything and we have also not heard of anyone who has received that money”, is the chorus among the vulnerable.
Private organisations have however simply gone to the ground and utilizing pre-existing structures such as the Social Welfare and the offices of Members of Parliament managed to reach the needy.
(Above-Food donations have been characterised by an influx of able-bodied young people whose informal jobs have been curtailed)
One such organisation is the Uebert Angel Foundation which has been handing out mealie meal in a variety of areas.
Above-Hatfield MP Tapiwa Mashakada and Pastor Felix Angel
Among other places, they have been to Norton and Hatfield where they handed out thousands of kg’s of mealie meal.
Such programmes have revealed the abject state of government’s own readiness to support the vulnerable as thousands have come out to try and get the food despite stipulations that it’s for the vulnerable, the elderly and the disabled.
(Above) Cooking oil donations by Raha in Norton.
In Hatfield the majority of those that came out were middle aged informally employed persons who are still decreed not to go to work under the Level 2 lockdown regulations.
The situation revealed the abject state of things in the country and the need for government to come up with real effective interventions against hunger.
Leaving the responsibility to such institutions such as the Uebert Angel Foundation, Econet or Cangrow isn’t sufficient.