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Mthuli Ncube always wanted to be in politics

by Staff reporter
08 Aug 2023 at 06:48hrs | Views
FINANCE and Economic Development Minister, Professor Mthuli Ncube, who is also the Zanu-PF parliamentary candidate for Cowdray Park constituency in Bulawayo says his participation in mainstream politics is not a coincidence as he has always wanted to be in the game.

A distinguished technocrat and an accomplished academic with vast global experience and numerous accolades, Prof Ncube took many by surprise when he joined the Government in 2018 to become the Treasury boss.

Very few had imagined the Mathematical Finance Professor becoming a full-time politician until his appointment as deputy finance secretary in the Zanu-PF Politburo last year in December.

He was also voted into the Central Committee in Bulawayo last October before being endorsed unopposed as the Cowdray Park National Assembly candidate for the ruling party in March.

Despite the criticism and negativity by some opposition elements, Prof Ncube is not turning back on his political journey, which has been well-nurtured under the Second Republic led by President Mnangagwa, whom he enjoys working under.

But what really is the motivation for his joining of politics and what is his endgame? How does someone so accomplished like Prof Ncube leave his global comfort and come back home to compete for a political position under Zanu-PF? These and other several questions are what the doomsayers have been asking.

In an interview Prof Ncube replied to many of these questions and opened up on so many other issues including his upbringing, education and political views.

At the heart of his desire, and in line with President Mnangagwa's vision, is to contribute to the country's economic transformation and utilise his vast experience and knowledge to make Zimbabwe one of the most progressive countries.

"I have always wanted to be in politics and I am a man of the people. It's only now that people understand my intentions. Put me in any constituency and I will deliver. I am a people's person because I have love for the people," said Prof Ncube.

He said what many people do not know is that he has been in the political field for many years and has assisted many communities across the country but not to gain political favour.

"I have drilled boreholes and I have even helped develop young entrepreneurs in making products, car washes and more. When I made my intentions known many people didn't know and after I began working, they then embraced me," said Minister Ncube.

Prof said he regards himself as a disciplinarian, an attribute he exercised more during his stint as a lecturer and when he took over the various administrative roles in his illustrious career. He said managing the economy as head of the Treasury requires more discipline. No wonder when he first became the Minister, he quickly introduced tough austerity measures under the Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP) to straighten up things.

Despite the backlash from many stakeholders, Prof Ncube said he remained steadfast as he knew this was the right thing to do for the economy to flourish and now the positive results are being realised.

"Our economy has been growing even with the instability we have seen. We have recorded significant figures in our growth, we are working on dealing with speculators. So far so good, we are delivering by squeezing liquidity from a fiscal and monetary point of view. We are dealing tough with speculators and we don't hesitate in dealing with deviants. As long as I am in the seat, our economy will grow and it has shown so much growth in the past five years," said Prof Ncube.

Reflecting on his past experiences, Prof Ncube said he was not someone who runs away from problems as long as he is convinced the interventions being taken are proper.

He made reference to the introduction of the two percent tax, which initially attracted a lot of resistance but has been fully embraced and its significance is now being appreciated.

"I don't run away from problems…I am supportive but when people deviate, I am very harsh and I do not take prisoners," said Prof Ncube.

Guided by President Mnangagwa's vision of transforming Zimbabwe into an upper middle-income economy by 2030, Prof Ncube said the Second Republic has achieved numerous milestones on the economic front.

These include the restoration of macro-economic stability, the roll-out of massive infrastructure development projects and growing investments leading to the transformation of the key economic sector such as mining, agriculture, manufacturing and growth in exports, among others.

This has led to the creation of more job opportunities for locals and the desired uplifting of standards of living for many communities.

In his private life, Prof Ncube said he was a reserved individual who has a passion for reading books, and newspapers and watching political and financial economic programmes on local and international television channels. Prof Ncube is a family man and has four children with his wife who is a civil engineer.

"I have three sons and a daughter. One of my sons is a civil engineer. My second son followed my steps while my daughter is into ‘IT' and my other son is still in high school," said Prof Ncube.

"I don't speak politics when I am home. I am a family man and that's that."

Prof Ncube said he has friends whom he keeps in touch with but hardly engages with them because of his usually busy schedule. He also loves sport and has a particular passion for cricket and golf.

Looking into August 23, he said he was ready to deliver victory for the ruling party in Cowdray Park.

"I am ready to be with the people for the people. I know this is the right moment and I will be their man," said Professor.

Source - The Chronicle