ZiG is yet another infernal nuisance

Your Excellency, my conscience affirms that the Zimbabwe Gold (ZiG) is yet another infernal nuisance. As I see it, it is deficient, devoid of the core fundamentals of a propitious currency. Truly, ZiG is not an economic eureka.

GOOD day, President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Your Excellency, my conscience affirms that the Zimbabwe Gold (ZiG) is yet another infernal nuisance. As I see it, it is deficient, devoid of the core fundamentals of a propitious currency. Truly, ZiG is not an economic eureka.

It is burdened by a credibility crisis. Like the buffalo soldier Bob Marley sang about, who fought for survival on arrival, ZiG was never destined to have it easy. Henceforth its introduction was shrouded in mistrust due to Zimbabwe being a commonly loathed black sheep regionally and far beyond.

Hence, your 2018 application to rejoin the Commonwealth is still pending.

Your Excellency, Zimbabwe has accumulated massive negative returns because of its propensity to hold harmonised elections that fail the credibility test. Notwithstanding the punitive sanctions that were recently imposed on you by the United States government, indeed, your government has an onerous credibility deficit.

There is a cost to a government in the hands of a ruling elite of low reputation. It cannot evade censure for attaining power illegitimately and for not being respectful of human rights.

The fact that ZiG is backed by gold and other precious minerals, however, does not suffice to build confidence. It failed to set forth sighs of relief that are ordinarily expected as a welcome to a currency that is billed as being backed by gold and other precious minerals.

It is a verity that Zimbabwe is bequeathed with an abundance of minerals, ranging from gold, diamonds to many others. It actually takes a geologist, of which I am not one, to roll call the deposits of mineral treasures which, all things being equal, could sufficiently back the ZiG.

Yet, besides the abundance, citizenry is not convinced that the said reserves of natural resources are available in requisite quantities to back ZiG. Given that there were grey areas with regards to the quantities of gold that were in the vaults at the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ), during your recent inspection visit, a dearth of trust was pronounced.

Consequently, ZiG is yet another infernal nuisance.

It is apparent that citizenry regards the notion of ZiG being backed by gold and other precious minerals with not only suspicion, but also askance and disdain.

Your Excellency, citizenry remembers well the gold corruption exposé investigative documentary, Gold Mafia. It was an antithesis of accountability and transparency that government retaliated by unleashing tirades on the news channel that compiled the document.

And, government went on to renege on its promise to investigate the corruption allegations that were raised in the documentary. Prior to that, the late former President Robert Mugabe alleged that US$15 billion worth of diamonds had fallen into corrupt hands in Chiyadzwa. Yet again, no investigations were carried out.

With ZiG coming as it does on the backdrop of apprehensions due to previous collapsed currencies and corruption, it is inevitably struggling for acceptance. Indeed, citizenry is sceptical about ZiG, through and through.

Your Excellency, Zimbabwe has an unsavoury reputation for introducing new currencies now and then. Since independence, failed currencies have been your government’s Achilles heel.

All successive currencies failed to hold their own. Now, as ZiG replaces the Zimdollar that progressively lost value henceforth your reintroducing it in 2019, from where I stand, ZiG is not an economic eureka.

I reckon the vendor who said she would rather lose a sale than accept ZiG stated with exactitude the magnitude of the disapproval rating of the new currency. Its a yawning deficit of confidence and credibility which is commensurate with the reputation of your government.

Verily, the introduction of ZiG ought to have set alight a flaming euphoria that could have generated anticipation and acceptance of the currency if the fundamentals were correct. Yet, that has not been the case as the ZiG’s launch was as a dull as the recitation of platitudes.

Your Excellency, ZiG is shrouded in a plethora of credibility and legitimacy crisis. Methinks citizenry is of the conviction that ZiG is by no means the long anticipated economic eureka. Given the magnitude of mistrust in government, duly, ZiG inevitably suffers a likewise fate.

It, therefore, needed skilful communicators to execute its launch. Yet, with all due respect, it is the irony of a national launch of the new currency that the crew that is spearheading the ZiG introduction does not exhibit a thing or two about public relations.

They have hardly shown themselves as congenial and credible. With all due respect, they are not given to persuasion. It is small wonder that their wooden approach can be attributed to ZiG being overtly regarded as yet another infernal nuisance.

There is a gulf of credibility deficit that yearns to be bridged. Consequently, the engagement of articulate communicators ought not have been foregone. As I see it, the failure of ZiG to excite citizenry could have been minimised had the launch been planned diligently.

It is my studied evaluation that the RBZ governor John Mushayavanhu ought to gather and bundle himself neatly. He has to add communication mastery to his remarkable professional faculties.

Otherwise, the inevitable history of failed currencies will be perpetuated under his watch. His contradictory statements are detrimental to building of confidence and acceptance of ZiG.

Considering that he sits at the pole of the apex bank, truly, probity warrants him to invest in acquiring communication proficiencies. He must be an accomplished communicator whose concise statements are ethical and renowned for clarity of thought and credibility. It is of paramount importance that he be admirably conclusive, coherent and convincing in his communication.

His backtracking on the conceptualisation of ZiG after the World Bank clarification of the bounds of its consultancy role, is detrimental to his reputation as the incumbent RBZ governor.

Your Excellency, be that as it may, forsooth, ZiG is yet another infernal nuisance.

  • Cyprian Muketiwa Ndawana is a public-speaking coach, motivational speaker, speechwriter and newspaper columnist.

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