Businesspersons and political activists in Matabeleland region have called for the reconstitution of Distressed Industries and Marginalised Areas Fund (DIMAF) initiative to stop the continued closure of firms from Bulawayo to Harare.
Dairiboard Holdings Limited, one of the country’s biggest manufacturer and marketer of food and beverage products, is the latest company to relocate citing viability challenges.
Bulisani Ncube former Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce (ZNCC) member told Radio Dialogue that government should recapitalise sectors which provide these companies with raw materials.
“All the agro-processing companies are so critical to us and we should be able to maintain them, but what is key for government now is to recapitalise farmers who are input providers to these companies,” said Ncube.
He further said government should let go of the textile industries saying they are facing stiff competition from Chinese firms.
Mthwakazi Youth Leaders Joint Resolution spokesperson Mqondisi Moyo said it is unfortunate that DIMAF has been politicised at the expense of the region.
Moyo said: “DIMAF is there on paper but nothing is happening on the ground. Sadly, we have political leaders representing us but they are doing nothing.”
He said they will soon engage political leaders in Matabeleland to force them protect the interest of the region. Busani Sibindi a member of the resolution concurred that the political leadership is failing to promote development in the region.
The DIMAF initiative was established in 2011 by the government as a way of aiding Bulawayo firms which were shutting down operations due to financial challenges.