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If Mnangagwa 'developing Zimbabwe with or without sanctions' doesn't it expose ZANU PF at fault not the West?

20 Oct 2022 at 18:04hrs | Views
Having blamed supposed 'sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe by the West' for everything that has gone wrong, is going wrong, and can possibly go wrong in the country - today, nonetheless, the government never tires telling us how 'projects and programs' that have been lying idle for decades have suddenly been brought back to life by the so-called 'Second Republic'.

President Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa has never wasted any time informing all who care to listen how his administration had resorted to using our own resources in developing the country - leaving no one or no place behind, and building the country brick by brick.

In fact, he has hardly stayed at State House, as he officiates at each and every thing that needs to be opened or commissioned - including, boreholes, clinics, dams, shopping malls, empty ground (set aside for one project or another), and several companies that have decided to set up shop in Zimbabwe.

Mnangagwa has also made it his mission in life boasting of meeting with multi-billionaires largely from the Western hemisphere, thereby striking 'mega multi-billion dollar investment deals' - whilst, numerous others have expressed interest.

With the country promised an 'upper middle-income economy by 2030' - again, sanctions or not - the question arises...

If these restrictive measures - only those by the US still remaining, imposed under ZIDERA [the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act] - are not able to stop this claimed 'development', why have both the government and ruling ZANU PF party been blaming them for the economy meltdown experienced for the better part of the past two decades?

If Zimbabwe can grow its economy 'using its own resources' - abundantly blessed with exceeding natural resources, agricultural prowess, tourism, and a manufacturing sector still trying to find its feet - what has been stopping us for the past twenty years, whilst the economy screamed, and millions of Zimbabweans wallowed in deplorable destitution?

Why were we not 'looking inside, and using our own resources' - as if it was only last year that we finally realized the fact that we had nearly 60 identified precious minerals?

In other words, whose fault was it for Zimbabwe not 'developing with or without sanctions'?

If we are to believe the alleged 'development and economic growth' in Zimbabwe over the past few years - yet, sanctions by the US still in place - can we then not place the blame for our intolerable poverty and suffering squarely on the ZANU PF regime for sleeping on the wheel for twenty or so years, and not doing what they were expected to do?

Is it not clear that, sanctions are in fact, not the real cause of our economic hardships - but, a government that dismally failed to perform its duties, and fulfil its deliverables?

It has become undeniable - based on the ruling establishment's own proclamations - that, the problem over the past two decades was never about so-called sanctions, but ZANU PF itself.

Which now explains why no one has adequately managed to articulate how travel bans, asset freezes and transaction restrictions on a mere 73 individuals and 37 entities have authored the world record-breaking misery and impoverishment of millions of Zimbabweans.

Surely, why - if we have a nation that earned US$1.7 billion from legal gold exports, US$700 million (diamonds), US$186 million (platinum), with total US$5 billion from all minerals in 2021 alone - should be crying over sanctions, leading to our seemingly unending tribulations?

As such, the question becomes - where has all the money from our God-given abundant natural resources been going?

If all of the US$25 billion that was accrued over the past 15 years from diamonds had been submitted to the national treasury - instead of the pathetic and shocking one percent that actually found its way into the coffers - why would nearly half the population be still living in extreme poverty, earning less than US$1.90 a day?

Why would bridges swept by long forgotten cyclones and floods have remained unrepaired for years, or new schools equipped with state-of-the-art learning equipment not been constructed, or water challenges faced in urban areas resolved - if those in power had done their job?

Yet, they opted to loot these resources - with an estimated US$1.5 billion of annual gold revenue being lost to smuggling, usually at the hands of those closely linked to power, who are regarded untouchable and left to plunder with impunity.

Mnangagwa has already made it clear that Zimbabwe can rise again, regardless of the continued existence of these restrictions on a handful of individuals and entities - in so doing, exposing the fallacy that our unbearable pain and suffering was ever the result of these measures.

The economic hardships faced by millions of ordinary Zimbabweans over the past two decades have been at the orchestration of those in authority - who chose to steal what was supposed to be equitably shared amongst all the citizens - and, hide the subsequent economic fallout on sanctions.

- Tendai Ruben Mbofana is a social justice activist, writer, researcher, and social commentator. Please feel free to contact him on WhatsApp or Call: +263715667700 | +263782283975, or Calls Only: +263788897936, or email:

Source - Tendai Ruben Mbofana
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