BULAWAYO - Reserve Bank Governor Gideon Gono has said he is not opposed to a drive to transfer ownership of foreign firms to locals but said it must be done properly.
He spoke after President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF, buoyed by a devastating election victory, threatened to forge ahead with indigenisation of the economy saying it was the mandate it had obtained from the people on July 31 as outlined in the party manifesto.
Gono clarified that he was not against the indigenisation policy.
“We will be insane, we will be out of our minds and un-Zimbabwean not to want to see the economy being in the hands of the majority of our people who yesterday were disadvantaged,” Gono said.
“That is as far as our political masters would say but where we come in is to say, yes, it’s a goal, but let’s do it properly.”
He said he was confident that the whole process, if effected, would be done properly and in an orderly fashion.
“I speak without fear of contradiction or anything when I say they would not be any unstructured or chaotic or forced interventions in the banking sector outside the technical agreement and legal ways of doing things that we will agree to as chief advisors to government,” he declared.
Gono said nothing will take place without the blessing of the RBZ as required by the law.
The RBZ chief was in Bulawayo to allay growing fears here about the immediate return of the worthless Zimbabwean currency.
The RBZ governor flew into Bulawayo yesterday accompanied by a five-member team comprising of George Guvamatanga and Sam Malaba, the president and deputy president of the Bankers Association of Zimbabwe (BAZ) respectively, as well as staff from the central bank to calm jittery depositors who were making cash withdrawals in the wake of president Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF’s landslide victory last week.
The second largest city was thrown into panic, prompting an SOS call to the apex bank to come and help instil some confidence.
Gono was supported by Eric Bloch, the Bulawayo business community, Calistus Ndhlovu, the chairman of Zanu PF in Bulawayo and the local banking community.
Persistent fears of the return of the local currency has gripped the country in response to election promises by Mugabe.
Just like most cities in the country, there has been a bank run by depositors eager to withdraw
their savings from financial institutions.
Representatives of BAZ said their major worry was the return of the Zimbabwean dollar and the effect of the threats to indigenise the banking sector which they said had spawned severe uncertainty in the sector.