Gono in need of everyone's support

HARARE - Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) governor Gideon Gono might have created many enemies during his reign at the height of the hyperinflation period, few would begrudge him for his efforts in trying to bring discipline to the financial sector.

During the time of Gono’s “extra-ordinary measures to deal with extra-ordinary situations” many people cried foul especially those who lost their Zimbabwe dollar savings.

Although some would want to hate him for that, they would for once agree with him for seeking to get errant banks into the straight line of business.

Gono recently increased to $100 million the minimum capital requirements for commercial and merchant banks from the current levels of $12,5 million and $10 million respectively.

He gave the banks until the end of 2014 to meet these new thresholds.

This was received with trepidation by banks and some armchair critics. Some cried foul saying Gono wants banks to do the impossible which will result in closures of indigenous banks.

But most of these so-called indigenous banks have struggled to run their businesses and voluntarily surrendered their licences while some have been looting clients’ funds.

But we cannot agree more with Gono.

Banks have for long taken people for granted, playing Russian roulette with people’s hard-earned deposits.

It has now become a huge possibility to just wake up and be told that a bank has closed due to underhand deals by those who run some of these errant banks.

Gono’s announcement is the much needed master stroke to bring stability to our country’s banking system.

It’s better to have a few strong banks which can give depositors longterm assurances that their money will be in safe hands.

At the moment, many Zimbabweans are happy to keep their monies under the pillows and mattresses because they no longer trust banks.

If it means that we should have few solid banks let it be so. We are tired of these unannounced rob-the- people type of banks.

The decision that cabinet took in endorsing Gono’s plans is the right one.

It is in the best interest of the banking public.

These banks should stop being cry babies.

They have refused to give loans to individual clients and in cases that they do, they charge very unrealistic interest rates and again on this one we would like to laud government for being on the same page with Gono.

So let it be survival of the fittest. We need banks that do not seek to milk individual customers but those that are able to fund our industry, agriculture and manufacturing to help revive our battered economy.

As the acting minister of finance Gorden Moyo said: comply, comply, comply.

Banks must comply and we move on.

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