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Zimbabwe govt workers march against sanctions

by Staff reporter
25 Oct 2023 at 12:59hrs | Views
On Wednesday, civil servants in Harare are set to participate in a march protesting against the sanctions imposed by the United States and Europe on various leaders and associates of the Zanu-PF party. These sanctions are based on allegations of human rights abuses.

Zimbabwe is observing SADC Anti-Sanctions Day on this Wednesday, following the decision by the regional bloc to advocate for the removal of these measures, which have been criticized as being unfairly targeted.

Information Minister Jenfan Muswere emphasized the focus of this year's commemorations on acknowledging the resilience of the youth in the face of these sanctions and harnessing their involvement in the fight against these measures. He underscored the responsibility of the Zimbabwean people, especially the youth, to work towards ending these sanctions.

Minister Muswere also appealed to the media to highlight the challenges brought about by these sanctions.

Since 2019, regional leaders have been commemorating October 25 as Anti-Sanctions Day to voice their opposition to the enduring trade and commerce restrictions imposed by the United States, United Kingdom, European Union, and their allies on Zimbabwe. This initiative was started by the Southern African Development Community (SADC), a coalition of 16 regional nations, and has since been embraced by the broader African Union.

Minister Muswere urged all media outlets to make use of the government's initiative to expand communication channels, allowing the public to freely advocate for the unconditional removal of sanctions and to actively reveal how these illegal measures negatively affect the national interest.

The Zimbabwean government contends that these sanctions are essentially retribution for its fast-track land reform program, which aimed to rectify a colonial legacy by redistributing land from 4,500 white commercial farmers to 300,000 black farmers.

Civil servants will march in the city center, with Vice President Constantine Chiwenga expected to address them. He outlined various measures taken to address the issue and impact of sanctions on the country.

"In order to counteract the detrimental effects of sanctions as a means to undermine our national democracy and economic sovereignty, His Excellency President Cde Dr. E.D. Mnangagwa initiated the engagement and re-engagement policy. In doing so, the President repositioned Zimbabwe's diplomatic approach to attract increased investment to our country," Minister Muswere stated.

Apart from the march, the government plans to host a gala in Dotito featuring several entertaining artists as part of the day's commemorations.

In contrast to the government's narrative, it's worth noting that Zimbabwe's economy was already deteriorating before the imposition of these sanctions. For example, in 1997, the government made significant, unbudgeted payouts to disgruntled veterans from the 1970s war for independence, leading to a 71.5% devaluation of the Zimbabwean dollar against the US dollar and a 46% drop in the stock market, a day referred to as Black Friday.

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