HomeOpinion & AnalysisColumnistsMugabe’s threats against business unhelpful

Mugabe’s threats against business unhelpful


President Robert Mugabe, on returning, from the United Nations Summit in New York on Monday, warned businesses of unspecified action and accused companies of plotting against his government.

Mugabe’s statements are unhelpful and are likely to further worsen the situation, as business and his government are likely to take polar positions.

In the wake of the economic turbulence that is rocking the country, Mugabe should have chosen to reassure his citizens rather than threaten a key component of the economy.

What Zimbabweans are yearning for is a leadership with focus, rather than one that dabbles in conspiracy theories and paranoia.

It is unbelievable that captains of industry would plot against Mugabe at such a grand scale and it is important that the President introspects before issuing warnings.

Mugabe has been advised that his government and civil service are too big and the country’s shrinking economy cannot sustain them, but he has dismissed such warnings.

Mugabe continues to insist on paying civil servants’ bonuses, when it is clear that the economy cannot afford such largesse.

The President was told that bond notes could not be sustained at the rate of 1:1 with the dollar, but he and his government insisted on the surrogate currency.

The writing has been on the wall for a very long time, but the tragedy is that the authorities have ignored the warning signs.
The collapse of the economy is inevitable under the circumstances, unless Mugabe takes corrective action, which he should have done a long time ago.

There is a desperate need for him to trim the civil service, with the first people to go being the youth officers, whom he ordered reinstated after they had been axed.

Mugabe ought to drastically cut on his trips and delegations to foreign countries, as this provides an avenue for the drainage of scarce foreign currency.

There should be no room for populism, as everyone takes the bitter pill of austerity.

Everybody, not just ordinary Zimbabweans, should tighten their belts, with foreign currency spend monitored carefully, not this environment where people connected to Mugabe and his family are seen shamelessly flaunting wealth.

What led to the depreciation of bond notes and the spike in prices is not business’ fault, but rather the lack of policies that are friendly to the economy.

Mugabe may issue as many threats as possible, but the reality is that without meaningful reforms, things are only going to get worse.

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