HARDLY four months after President Robert Mugabe’s re–election in the July 31 harmonised polls torched wild celebrations within Zanu PF, the man appears to have a herculean task ahead of him.
It is time for serious business as the economy remains in a bind, with no clear–cut indication from Zanu PF on how their manifesto is going to be rolled out in a manner that will inject new life into Zimbabwe’s comatose industries.
Zanu PF promised people that without MDC-T in government they would improve the economy, re-open industry and improve workers welfare.
Yet over 700 firms have collapsed under the watch of Zanu PF.
One can only wonder what new strategies Zanu PF is likely to draft that will see a departure from their “business as usual” approach.
We do not want to believe that the failure by government to bring new impetus into the economy has to do with power struggles within the ruling party.
Thousands of young people who are out of employment expect the new government to create employment.
Yet, thousands others are being churned out of the country’s tertiary institutions every year. Despite all the hype about indigenisation and empowerment, Zanu PF appears to have lost sight of the fact that it is not every person who is cut out to be an entrepreneur.
There is now widespread fear that the economy will soon be in a free-fall, tumbling headlong into the pre -2008 nightmarish experiences.
Zimbabwe’s economy shrank by 45% during a decade-long crisis under Zanu PF, but showed significant potential for a rebound in 2009 after Mugabe was forced to share power with arch-rival Morgan Tsvangirai following a blood–soaked election whose results were fiercely contested the previous year.
But the new Zanu PF government is yet to clearly define how it is going to pull the economy back from the brink of collapse. The new approach they have now taken on indigenisation, where they are now saying they will not use a one–size–fits–all approach, seems to suggest inconsistency in policy although this may be a welcome move.
The question now is –what revision are they going to employ next, and what that will mean to investors?
The Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) says most companies across the country are working at a third of capacity, down from 55% a year ago.
This makes sad reading and the new government should consider adopting a fresh, radical approach if they are to inject confidence to the populace that the economy will be revived. As things stand at the moment, prospects for the country’s future are not good at all.
For a lasting economic resolution, we urge Zanu PF to swallow its pride and re–engage the international community, the MDC-T and other political forces in the country for a workable business model that can take the country forward.
This is the only way they can court foreign investors whose presence will be key for a serious economic rejuvenation as years of isolation have clearly demonstrated that we cannot play solitaire in this regard and expect to win. We await development