Zimbabwe needs urgent talks

HARARE - With the grim economic news coming from all directions, it’s easy to get discouraged about our ability to repair the damage of years of Zanu PF’s failed economic policies.

And yet, there are pragmatic solutions to our biggest challenges, including ways to restore healthcare, to create family-supporting jobs, and to make a place for ourselves, even regain a leadership role in the regional economy.

Collaborating with some of the nation’s top progressive thinkers could help in exploring and refining solutions for the economy, currently plagued by a deepening liquidity crunch.

Now, more than ever, Zimbabwe needs a national debate on economic direction.

Morgan Tsvangirai’s call for national dialogue must be taken seriously given the direction the country is going.

At this pivotal and historic time, Zimbabweans are desperately looking for a new direction in economic policy. Beset by job losses, wage stagnation and escalating costs, they are ready for fundamental change to restore security and opportunity for their families — to realise the promise of a better Zimbabwe.

With ZimAsset failing to gain traction as explained by economists elsewhere in this edition, it is high time Zanu PF answers the MDC call for a dialogue.

The ruling elite is showing that they are aware of the challenges, and the unveiling of ZimAsset which proposes a cocktail of measures to revive the economy, including borrowing money from Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, a group of large emerging market nations collectively known as Brics, and setting up a sovereign wealth fund; shows that Zanu PF is alive to the crisis besetting this nation.

The country needs a series of innovative solutions to the most pressing economic problems of the day— from a realistic health care programme to competitive policies that will return Zimbabwe to the position of regional leadership it enjoyed for much of the last three decades. ZimAsset was designed to usher in a new era of economic growth in which all Zimbabweans would share in the gains, but this has not been so.

It’s unlikely Zanu PF will be able to keep the favour of patriotic nationalism alive in a context where Zimbabweans continue to be impoverished and the realities of patronage and self-enrichment amongst the party and the connected few continue to be exposed.

We need lasting solutions to our problems. Tinkering around the edges will not do, and only national dialogue can address this.

Our economy is out of whack, thanks to a generation of mistaken policies that have failed to reward work, encouraged job losses and essentially told people that they are on their own.

    Comments (1)

    Kana Matalks aramba, vanhu ngava taurirane!

    Crispen Chigwanda - 18 July 2014

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