Economy in bad shape, Grace admits

HARARE - First Lady Grace Mugabe unwittingly admitted that the economy was in bad shape leading to thousands of educated youths finding themselves on the streets.

During a tour of the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) stands on Thursday, Grace said Zimbabwean companies need to do more to satisfy the local market with the surplus being exported.

“This is the way forward, this is the key to the development, the key to employment generation because we are talking about the youths who after having been educated are finding themselves on the streets,” the Zanu PF’s women’s secretary said.

Her statements also coincided with government spin-doctor Jonathan Moyo’s sentiments that government lacked a strategy to create wealth, adding that Zimbabwe was celebrating Workers Day in a nation with no work.

“This May Day our triple challenge is we’ve workers without work, we’ve lost the sense of labour value & we lack a strategy to create wealth!” Jonathan Moyo wrote on his Twitter page on Friday, which was Workers’ Day.

Grace and Moyo’s admission that all is not well in government resonates well with MDC President Morgan Tsvangirai  who is on record saying although Zanu PF had “rigged the July 31, 2013 election, it will not be able to rig the economy”.

“Despite the fact that the economy is not performing well, I can see enthusiasm amongst our people, that they would want to showcase what they are producing, you know and what they are manufacturing, I can say I am very much impressed with what I am seeing this year,” said Grace.

“I know times are hard, but we are a resilient people and that’s why we are here and showcasing what we are producing so that people from other countries can see that Zimbabwe is a hard working nation,” she said.

While Zanu PF promised to create two million jobs in its election manifesto, company closures have become an everyday occurence, with the unemployment rate growing every day. And Grace admits that while people are being trained, there are no industries to absorb them.

“And what I have always said is that we have so many institutions, educational institutions and these other facilities where people are getting skills training, you are giving them the fishing rod but haven’t got the lake where they are going to do the fishing but with all that is happening here we are saying now there is the lake where you can go and fish,” she said.

The two admissions by senior Zanu PF officials also come in the wake of  xenophobic attacks in South Africa where locals brutally attacked  foreigners for “stealing their jobs”, with the country’s president Jacob Zuma blaming his fellow African leaders of failing to fix their economic problems.

Renowned economist John Robertson earlier told our sister publication, the Daily News that government remained “incompetent” to revive the moribund economy as the majority of the country’s leadership was more interested in political expediency rather than pragmatic bread and butter issues.

“Unless government implements austerity measures and addresses policy discord, uncertainty will continue to haunt the economy.

“To restore Zimbabwe’s position on a positive economic growth path, investment is needed and this calls first for investor confidence and security,” Robertson said.

In a move that was meant to lessen government’s wage bill, minister of Finance Patrick Chinamasa had suspended bonuses for civil servants for two years to create fiscal space, but President Robert Mugabe, reversed that decision.

Chinamasa’s reasons had been that government no longer had the capacity to support the wage bill, which gobbles 82 percent of the fiscus monthly, as the economy had transitioned from the formal sector to informal.

Economic experts who spoke to the Daily News earlier this week said it was becoming increasingly evident that the country’s Zanu PF-led government was clueless about turning around the fortunes of the economy, projected by the International Monetary Fund to decline further this year due to declining metal prices and poor policies.

Comments (10)

grace should stop commenting about the economy, she knows absolutely nothing about reviving the economy. The best thing she could do would be to advise her apparently very old husband to retire. By the end of 2017 only the cabinet ministers would still be employed, the rest would have lost their jobs in government.

redemption - 4 May 2015

I am going to state something very clearly here. prophetically! Grace and ZPF must realise that there is a judgment upon ZPF's disastrous and ungodly rule of Zimbabwe. After the 2013 elections I KNOW what the Lord showed me! After much grace and patience He was going to judge ZPF financially: pull the financial rug so to speak!! Get it! Any one of us only gets away with our sin for only so long. Are we stupid enough to think that the Lord has NOT seen all including rigged elections???

Righteous Justice - 4 May 2015

Grace can only advise on how to fih for old senile men as husbands. Thats all she has experience in. The rest...kutinhuwirw muromo!

Jojo - 4 May 2015

I remember Ian Douglas Smith say "Mugabe is blowing money like its running out of a tape and yet not looking into restoring the reserves. All the cash reserves are going to run dry" Because of bitterness we all had against Ian Smith, we scorned him. 30 years latter all he prophesied has come to pass. Strange. He summed it all in sentence. Zanu-PF has taken over all the farming industry. Nothing is coming out those farms. Zanu-PF has taken over all parastatal industries and now they are all broken and non-productive. Zanu-PF has taken over all the mining and have shifted all the capital out of the country. And can not do hard down pipe kimberlite mining. The private banking sector has been intimidated by unreasonable indigenousation. Banks will not risk importing cash which will be impounded by Zanu-PF at a drop of a hat. It happened to me in 2009. When we dropped the Zim dollar, my company US dollar account was raided and I lost all the cash to RG Mugabe and Gono. I safely say that these two are thieves. I am a Zimbabwean through and through, and I lost my cash to Zanu-PF, what of foreigners? Now the country is stuck. Nobody is keen to put their money here for us to use. Can you blame them? Zanu-PF is not an organisation for productivity but ZimAsset Stripping. Show me one Zanu-PF chef who gets up at 05:00 to do industrial production. All these men and women get up at 05:00 to plan ZimAsset Stripping. I am still bitter with Ian Douglas Smith for telling one cold truth that, we blacks only how to blow cash and do not know how to accumulate the wealth. By the way, the president, commander in chief will be blowing another $10 million in the next 2 months on his travels. The cabinet will be buying new Jeep Cherokes all terrain vehicles and then Mercedes for their wives.

Mbareboy - 4 May 2015

Brethren, we must come together as a nation and confess our sins and repent as a nation.The church must lead in prayer, fasting and sack cloth for restoration of our country spiritually,economically,politically and socially (Joel 1 v14, Joel 2v25,2 Chronicles 7v14).

Restoration - 5 May 2015

@ Restoration, I agree with you 100%. I would like to add that the church itself has to start by making some self introspection because i believe they are not playing the role they are supposed to.

Tahir Iqbal - 5 May 2015

Why Does Grace still employ that “handsome virile stud Joseph “Mtakwese” Made as her garden boy on one of many farms. Because he grows the size of cucumbers that she loves to simulate the presence of that whizkid genie James 'longprong' Makamba.

Breezy Nuts - 5 May 2015

Restoration. I agree with you. 2 Chronicles 7 vs 14 is the only solution to Zim crisis

Born 1953 - 5 May 2015

Please Daily News don't publish such nonsense. After all what does Grace know of the economy? Let's hear this from those Ministers who are responsible not some upstart!

saundy - 6 May 2015

@mbareboy, i like your comment. Nice one ,sando dzako. These Zanupf thugs have ruined our country and have been passing blame .

Big Meech Larry Hoover - 6 May 2015

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