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Meet Dr Pazvakavambwa, Masvingo Provicial Secretary

The new Provincial Secretary shares his vision for Masvingo with The Midweek Watch in a wide ranging interview soon after his assumption of duty

-Drug and substance abuse in youths one of his top priorities

The new Secretary for Masvingo Province and Devolution, Dr Addmore Pazvakavambwa replaced Dr Jefter Sakupwanya who has not been feeling well for a long time.

Dr Pazvakavambwa assumed duty at his Benjamin Burombo Building offices two weeks ago.

Below are excerpts from the interview, Midweek Watch (MW) and Dr Addmore Pazvakavambwa (AP).

MW: Where were you born?

AP: Dr Addmore Pazvakavambwa was born at Chinyika Rural Hospital, Gutu District in Masvingo Province. I am happily married with three (3) children, two (2) girls and one (1) boy.

MW: Where did you go to school.

 I attended Shiriyedenga Primary School in Harare and Mutero Secondary School in Gutu District for my Secondary Education. For tertiary education I attended Nyadire Teachers’ College, University of Zimbabwe and University of South Africa for PHD studies. My area of focus was results management.

MW: Tell us more about yourself

AP: Dr Pazvakavambwa is a results oriented and multi-skilled professional with experience and qualifications in the field of training management, human resources management, research (both quantitative and qualitative), strategic planning and management, performance audit, monitoring and evaluation and results management.

MW: Before your appointment where were you and what was role?

AP: Before my posting to the Post of Secretary of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution for Masvingo Province, I worked at Public Service Commission (Head Office) as Inspector General heading the Performance Audit and Inspectorate Department. As Inspector General, my job purpose was, among others, to audit the performance of the Public Service Commission & Line Ministries Departments and Agencies (MDAs). I was also seized with assessing and validating MDAs programmes and projects in terms of their efficiency, effectiveness and sustainability. Inspecting the utilization of Government human and material resources was also my area of focus. Another critical area of focus was carrying out investigations on complaints raised by the citizenry on issues pertaining to poor service delivery in MDAs and subsequently proffer recommendations as solutions to the challenges raised. My department also monitored MDAs’ compliance with relevant legislation, policy, best practices and other benchmarks. During the course of my work, I made immense contributions towards structuring a workable devolved Government that were adopted by the Public Service Commission. This included the structuring of the monitoring and evaluation at subnational level.

MW: What is your take on climate change considering Masvingo is mainly region 5?

AP: Since Masvingo is located in agro-ecological regions 3, 4 and 5 there is need to intensify climate proofing through, for example, agro-ecological matching (traditional grains for Region 4 and 5), soil and water conservation, mulching, etc. Masvingo is second to none when it comes to inland water bodies and it is a paradox that areas in the Province are vulnerable to droughts, so Irrigation Development is top priority to ensure food security. There is need to widen the scope of the Pfumvudza Programme. It is also imperative to share weather information through upscaling farmer field schools per village concept, digital platforms and online applications.

MW: What do you promise artists from the Province who are struggling to penetrate the mainstream market?

AP: Local upcoming artists need to be promoted through various ways in order to penetrate the mainstream market. For example, they need to be given opportunities to show case their talents at gatherings, facilitate at Business Expos, etc. It is also imperative to capacitate upcoming artists in Entrepreneurship.

MW: The youth are engaging in substance abuse, what do you intend to do to fight the scourge?

AP: To ameliorate the substance abuse scourge, the following strategies will be deployed: –

  • Carry out awareness campaigns
  • Embark on programmes to equip youth with skills for them to utilize their time productively.
  • Facilitate the funding of youth businesses through affordable loans
  • Expose youths to Business Conferences and Expos

MW: What do you promise the people of Masvingo as the new Provincial Secretary?

AP: In line with His Excellency the President’s Key Note Address at the Government High-Level Meeting (14 September 2023), as PS Masvingo Province, among other things, there is need for my office to focus on the following in order to expedite the implementation and completion of programmes/projects to ensure the attainment of Vision 2030 targets before year 2030: –

  • Strengthen the Whole of Government Approach Provincial level. Community participation will be strengthened in order to promote investment and development of enterprises in the province and districts utilizing their comparative advantages. There is urgent need to integrate Government services, eliminate silo mentality and enhance coordination among MDAs in Masvingo Province.
  • It is critical to promote production and productivity by ensuring the participation of the private sector through joint programming. Our programming in the Agricultural, Mining and Manufacturing sectors, for example, should be citizen-centric so that we secure the much needed buy-in and ownership from the citizenry. Focus will be on engendering inclusivity and equity in development (Leaving no one and no place behind). Hence the programming should focus on youths, women, the marginalized and vulnerable groups. Companies/Organisations must enhance and demonstrate Social Corporate Responsibility.
  • It is imperative that Masvingo’s competitiveness is improved by facilitating the Ease of Doing Business and Investment Promotion. In this regard, measurable targets will be developed in the context of the National Development Strategy 1 and validation of results done. Focus in the Province should be on value addition and beneficiation.
  • Enhance the provision of quality, affordable and accessible service delivery. To improve service delivery, focus should be on digitalization. It is imperative that the ICT Infrastructural backbone is strengthened and the availability of ICT equipment and gadgets in MDAs enhanced. It cannot be business as usual, there is room for continuous improvement through systems audits with the aim for reviewing our way of doing things and institutionalize Futures Thinking in Government. MDAs should empower their clients and develop Client Service Charters and institutionalize the provision of feedback from the clients. This can be through suggestion boxes, citizen’s report cards, etc.

To improve service delivery, it is necessary to change the work culture of public servants to inculcate Servant Leadership and citizen-centric values. There should be full compliance with the provisions of the Public Entities and Corporate Governance Act. The tenets of Good Corporate Governance are inter alia, accountability, fairness and transparency, and these should be embedded in leaders of public entities. This can be achieved through robust, comprehensive capacity building in partnership with the Public Service Academy.

Lake Tugwi Mukosi was commissioned in 2017 and 7 years down the line nothing meaningful has taken place except fishing at small scale level. 

Master plans after master plans have been crafted, stakeholders conferences after stakeholders conferences have been held, but no action has been taken for the ordinary person to benefit from the vast water body. What’s your comment on that?

Masvingo Province has the highest number of water bodies (including Tugwi Mukosi) and concerted efforts would be made to ensure that the ordinary person benefits through the development of irrigation infrastructure. Tugwi Mukosi Dam will benefit the ordinary citizen in the shortest possible time since efforts are already underway to finalise the critical issue of the Master Plan.

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