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MDC Youths Threaten March Over Distressed Companies Fund

Youths affiliated to Industry Minister Welshman Ncube’s Movement for Democratic Change formation have given the Ministry of Finance a two-week ultimatum to avail the $40 million Distressed and Marginalized Industries Fund to collapsing Bulawayo companies or face street protests.

The youths are also threatening to invade the Central African Building Society charged with disbursing the fund launched amid pomp and fanfare last year.

Khumbulani Malinga, the party’s Bulawayo provincial information secretary said the delay in the disbursement of the rescue package has dimmed hopes of creating employment for thousands of people in the city as more companies continue shutting down due to lack of capital.

The government has contributed only $10 million instead of $20 million for setting up the fund. Old Mutual has already availed $20 million as part of its contribution to the national fund.

Ncube said an inter-ministerial committee charged with reviving Bulawayo industries has proposed that the government should cut links with Old Mutual and set up another fund for distressed companies.