Story by Tambaoga Gora
The Second Republic has pledged to provide safe working spaces for micro, small to medium enterprises as part of government efforts to ensure no one and no place is left behind in the development matrix.
in this regard, the Chinhoyi municipality has taken heed of the government’s call to provide a conducive working environment for entrepreneurs after availing a 3 522 square metre piece of land in Rujeko suburb for the establishment of a safe market.
The market, which will accommodate micro, small to medium enterprises, financial institutions and legal firms under one roof, comes in the aftermath of community engagements which highlighted the need for proper infrastructure.
“Selling our wares in undesignated places creates an acrimonious relationship with authorities so this is a welcome development,” noted one of the beneficiaries.
“This is going to transform our lives. We have been given a fishing rod and not fish,” noted another beneficiary.
“Workspaces were a challenge for us. We were renting from others and it was very expensive to do business here,” another said.
The Deputy Minister of Women Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development, Honourable Jennifer Mhlanga says the initiative reflects the government’s concern over micro, small to medium enterprises and women empowerment.
“We are here because the government is concerned with micro, small to medium enterprises, we are here because the government has concern over women, and the president always says you are the mainstay of the economy,” she said.
Mashonaland West Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Honourable Mary Mliswa called for equal opportunities and warned space barons that their days are numbered.
“Workspace provision relieves local authorities and the MSMEs from a cat-and-mouse relationship. We all know that there are people called space barons, let us make a declaration that we are not going to accept that here,” stated Hon Mliswa.
Government is seized with the welfare of Micro, Small to Medium Enterprises which contribute 60 per cent to the National Gross Domestic Product, with President Mnangagwa calling for the establishment of Provincial Task Forces to investigate the issue of workspaces for the critical sector.