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'Mnangagwa fails to honour promises'

06 Jul 2020 at 18:00hrs | Views
ZIMBABWE is currently going through political and economic crises that have caused untold suffering to citizens. At the same time, factionalism appears to be devouring both the ruling Zanu-PF and opposition MDC.

Recently, the Supreme Court stripped Nelson Chamisa of the leadership of the MDC, triggering a fierce fight over the presidency of the country's main opposition party between him and Thokozani Khupe.

The Daily News' Eddie Zvinonzwa recently spoke to Transform Zimbabwe president Jacob Ngarivhume, a founding member of the MDC Alliance, on a number of issues. Below are excerpts of the interview.

Q: The majority of Zimbabweans - including politicians - celebrated the removal of the late former president Robert Mugabe in November 2017, giving way to the new dispensation led by President Emmerson Mnangagwa, following the military intervention. Is the excitement in the population as shown by the mass protest against Mugabe still there in the people?

A: Any excitement that existed dissipated a long time ago. We never celebrated Mnangagwa's rise to power. We simply gave him the benefit of the doubt. He promised investors and also promised us a properly run market economy as well as free and fair elections, but has dismally failed on all counts.

The shooting of civilians on August 1, 2018 and again in January 2019 and the subsequent crackdowns revealed Mnangagwa's true nature: A mere continuation of where the late Mugabe had left off.

Q: Zimbabwe is going through perhaps one of its toughest times economically - the ever-rising exchange rate as the Zimbabwe dollar continues to plunge. Do you see any light at the end of the tunnel?

A: There is nothing but darkness. We are doing all our things wrongly.  As long as the government takes foreign currency from those who earn it and waste it on themselves and their defunct State-owned enterprises, there is no hope of stabilising the exchange rate and controlling inflation.

Q: Yourself and other colleagues in the then National Electoral Reform Agenda (Nera) staged demonstrations against the introduction of bond notes. Many felt, as Nera, you were jumping the gun, asking you to give the leadership a chance with their experiment. What comment do you have now that the bond note seems to have failed?

A: The protest march against the introduction of the bond notes was in 2016, well before Mnangagwa toppled Mugabe. This government, like Mugabe's, turned a deaf ear to our pleas and those of the people.

How many chances do you give a leadership that has failed, time and time again, and still has no coherent understanding of how an economy works and grows?

Q: What do you think the Mnangagwa administration must do to get Zimbabwe back on track?

A: He has to carry out all the reforms that he himself promised the people of Zimbabwe and the world, to the investors when he flew to Davos in January 2018, as well as all the promises of political and economic reforms that he made to the IMF when Finance minister Mthuli Ncube published Zimbabwe's Economic Stabilisation Strategy document (2018-2020).

Q: It has long been said that the problem with our economy lies in the politics of the country? What do you say to this assertion?

A: That is obvious. When you have a party that believes in its right to rule, and uses all means possible to stay in power.

They not only selectively use the law to violently suppress any opposition or dissent, but help themselves to our national assets and financial resources and distribute them to their supporters without any expectation of repayment.

Q: You were part of the MDC Alliance for some time and at one point was its spokesperson. How do you view the goings-on in the political formation today and what do you think is the best way forward?

A: It's disappointing to see what's happening and hope they can figure something out. The party leaders and members will develop a resolution.

Q: As Transform Zimbabwe (TZ), what is your next move given that you pulled out of the MDC Alliance? What comment do you have on the goings-on in the MDC Alliance?

A: We'll continue doing what we do best: Speaking truth, developing leaders, and helping people in need right now. We hope the challenges in the MDC end soon so that they focus on real matters facing the people of Zimbabwe.

Q: What other comment do you have on Zimbabwean politics?

A: We're back to a pre-November 2017 moment where Zimbabweans - all citizens  must once again stand together to push for a new citizen-driven dispensation.

Source - dailynews
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