Legislators’ cars cost taxpayers $16m

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HARARE – Zimbabwe’s free spending government is splashing $16 million on top-of-the-range off-road vehicles at a time when many people are facing starvation.

The tender, floated yesterday by the State Procurement Board, is inviting bids for Isuzu trucks and Toyota Prados.

The Central Mechanical Engineering Department  specifies in the tender that it is looking to buy 20 Toyota Prado VXL vehicles and 250 Isuzu double cab vehicles.

The 250 Isuzus are for legislators while the 20 Toyota  Prado VXL  vehicles are for Cabinet ministers.
Just last month, government invited bids for 100 Ford Rangers.

In a bid to support the local automotive industry, government was looking at sourcing the 100 Ford Rangers from the ailing government-owned Wilowvale Mazda Motor Industries.

The parliamentary committee on Industry and Commerce has been seized with the matter, with chairperson of the committee Ray Kaukonde confirming that his committee was advocating that Willowvale gets the Ford Ranger deal.

Willowvale has said it has the capacity to procure the vehicles from South Africa’s General Motors.

Next week,  Industry and Commerce minister Mike Bimha  is expected to tour Willowvale to assess the plant and capacity of the company.

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