Latest News Editor's Choice

Opinion / Columnist

Binga, 41 years on but no development

08 Mar 2022 at 05:45hrs | Views
AS by-elections beckon, underdevelopment continues unabated in Binga with very little imprints of positive strides within communities.

By-elections will be held on March 26 and candidates from different political parties are all promising to develop one of the country's poorest districts.

But the promises for a better life are not new.

In the 1950s, thousands of the Tonga people were forcibly removed from their ancestral land in the Zambezi valley for the construction of the Kariba Dam.

They were promised homes, fertile land and a steady supply of electricity, but several decades on, the promises remain unfulfilled.

A by-election will be held for Binga North constituency which fell vacant after the recall of opposition legislator Prince Dubeko Sibanda from Parliament in October 2020.

As elections were suspended from December 2020, Binga was unrepresented in Parliament, a drawback to an already marginalised community.

Binga is home to one of the much sought-after fish industry. The area has a conservative culture, booming tourism industry which includes the hot springs.

Tourism, curio, fishing and basketry, wild fruits vending and cultural displays are some of the major economic activities with potential to drive development.

But villagers have claimed that lack of development is a result of "deliberate" marginalisation.

Some activists have for several years been questioning why there has been no development in Binga despite the district being endowed with natural resources.

Binga is known more for its challenges than potential and opportunities.

Any talk of Binga sees the conversation turn into moaning about under-development, including poor roads and lack of medical facilities among others.

In the past years, Binga has been one of the leading districts in receiving donor support in Matabeleland.

Most households in Binga survive on hand-outs from the donor community.

The hand-outs range from seed, food, bicycles, school fees and community projects. They also fund various activities which have seen many people being active and working for their families and communities.

Despite some villagers not seeing the importance of elections, the former Binga North MP Sibanda says the community should not lose hope.

Source - Citizens Bulletin
All articles and letters published on Bulawayo24 have been independently written by members of Bulawayo24's community. The views of users published on Bulawayo24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Bulawayo24. Bulawayo24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.