Give ED a chance, says Masiyiwa

HARARE - One of Zimbabwe’s most successful businesspersons, Strive Masiyiwa, has made a rare public comment on the country’s political and economic situation — describing President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s efforts to turn around the sickly local economy as “sincere”.

Speaking in an interview with continental business television channel CNBC Africa, Masiyiwa also described the political changes taking place in Zimbabwe since Mnangagwa came to power late last year as “real”.

The Econet Wireless founder also called for the removal of economic sanctions that were first imposed on Zimbabwe by the West during the ruinous era of the country’s former leader, Robert Mugabe.

“I have invested in Zimbabwe in the last 10 years US$1,5 billion and I am committed to investing in Zimbabwe as I have always been, come rain come shine.

“Concerning the change that has taken place, I believe it is real. I believe . . . Mnangagwa is sincere in the things he wants to do.

“It is going to be extremely challenging (turning around the local economy). Anyone who understands economics knows that it’s going to be tough going, but I think that Zimbabwe needs to be given a chance,” Masiyiwa said.

He said the current sanctions on Zimbabwe were no longer justified.

“I think the sanctions should be removed because there is no justification for them anymore. I have always been on record to say the sanctions are not justified.

“Now we are almost 20 years into the sanctions. You can’t have one country operating with its hands tied at its back,” Masiyiwa added.

Commenting on these remarks, the ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services said the country required all the support it could get to turn its economic fortunes around.

“Government welcomes statements by @StriveMasiyiwa calling for the removal of sanctions imposed against the country.

“The country requires all the support it can get to create an environment that is conducive for the revitalisation of the economy #TSP #MiddleIncomeEconomy2030,” the ministry said on Twitter.

Since Masiyiwa left Zimbabwe nearly two decades ago, after being targeted by Mugabe’s government, he has grown in stature to become a wealthy and much-respected businessman with considerable influence on the continent and internationally.

He sits on many influential boards involved in philanthropy and development work.

Masiyiwa’s remarks this week come as the US government has been giving Mnangagwa’s administration some encouragement — indicating very strongly recently that it is willing to end more than 15 years of Zimbabwe’s international isolation if the country implements key political and electoral reforms.

Prominent US senators, Jeff Flake and Chris Coons — who are both members of Washington’s influential Senate Foreign Relations Committee — met Mnangagwa in Harare to convey this sentiment ahead of the July 30 elections.

The two men are behind a new sanctions bill that amended Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act (Zidera) — which introduced punitive measures against Mugabe personally, as well as many of his senior officials and State entities.

The successor law, the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Amendment Act of 2018, contains conditions which are specific to Mnangagwa’s new dispensation.

Comments (13)

Someone from somewhere is gradually striped necked and left with no choice but to do what's good for Zimbabweans. Last week Chamisa openly said if Mnangagwa is manipulating transitional government with me recognize him as a legitimate president then he is fooling himself because when he think I would lift when he said lets lift, I will go opposite, I will pull down. It seems most Zimbos now knows that sanction is really a parasite in our economic growth while few are turning a blind eye and put all blame on corrupt elements in the government. Yes, corruption is never be supported or ignored but sanction is an economic weapon of distraction. Who ever support sanction is evil like sanctions itself.

truth - 1 November 2018

There's no truth in what truth is saying. We all nid a prosperous Zw, me, Strive, Chamisa and when u come to think of it even u. But when u denigrate a young man voted for by abt half of zimboz(the better half) then u expose yo colors as smbody singing for his...u know what! If u know the history of this thieving gvt then we can only say u r one of them. If u really hate anything Chamisa says then u r posting yo comments on the wrong platform. there several newspapers who wld love to repeatedly, unshamedly publish yo comments. Leave Nero and all of us alone!

El Nino - 1 November 2018

Chamisa understand shit about economics, knows nothing about ruling a dead country like Zimbabwe. He just wanna be president. Let's not be fooled by this idiotic little dictator. I support baba Masiiwa to give ED a chance.

Pfeee Mazinyo.Com - 1 November 2018

Yes sure. Give ED a chance to loot more. The past 38 years are not enough. So says Masiyiwa!

Royal Mthwakazi - 1 November 2018


Kambiri - 1 November 2018

while itz true that Chamisa may also want a prosperous zimbabwe,however it appears clear he wants our presidency more than he wants our nation's prosperity hence he conspires with our local manufacturers,wholesalers,retailers & other influential economic players to pin the people zim only for the purpose pressuring them to give him their presidency;last year he also with a corteori of others went to America & conspired with the American govt to uplift the so called Zidera law to punish the zimbabwean people who then seemed not willing to give him the presidency

addmore gudo - 1 November 2018

Don't expect anything new in Zimbabwe until you have free and fair elections, Presidential candidates are nominated through an open primary within their parties, and party leaders stop firing elected MPS, Mayors, and other so forth. Too much dictatorship and patronage. There is no hope here. Strive Masiiwa is so intangled in the system so he has to say nice things to whoever is in power. Very sad!

Wezhira - 1 November 2018

Wakaona wasvika pastage yekunotsvaga mushonga unokurapa from muroyi wacho akakurwarisa the in zm we say zvadhakwa! ED was part of the syndicate that ran this country into the mire...indeed from 1980. If he hs the foresight to get zw be a middle income economy by 2030 surely he shld hv foreseen the catastrophe we fell into in 08 and now. Trusting his predictions now wld be naive and suicidal. Mazimbo tinoshoreka chokwadi kutruster smone who was part of the cabal that has stolen our future, ruined our economy using the most ruthless means thinkable with your future and that of your children. Why Zanu PF ? Why shld we submit to the whims of so barbaric a grouping of creatures who call themselves a political part. We shld recognise the devil by his signature mhani even if his looks change a thousand times, wch devils characteristically do! If u follow such leadership and call yourself a zimbabwean then i am ashamed to call myself one!

El Nino - 1 November 2018

Zambia , Kenya , Nigeria have no sanctions and RSA too but millions of their people live in slums , Hello Commonwealth. Munochema chema nekuti munotaurisa.....dai makadzidza muchiziva kuvatamba. Kana musina power yemari kana tekinorojishandisai shona kana ndebele. Nyika dzisingashandise chirungu mu EU dzakasununguka uye dzinemufaro....ngochani ishoma. Zvimwe zvirema zvinowonekwa zvakashama zvichihura nemazitumbu.....varungu vakangwara vachiseka zvavo.....kwanzi tirikutonga. :-) , kutonga chii munhu asingazive zvirikuitika mu Lusaka kana Maputo ?.

Zunguzenge - 1 November 2018

Here we again! Masiyiwa just singing for his supper, possibly eyeing some licence of some sort from ED, just like Trevor Ncube. ED should have given democracy a chance in the first place and give looting a break.

Inyika - 1 November 2018

Strange that he feels that way yet majority in the diaspora were even denied their right to vote. The Junta and ZEC and Presiding Judges who could have ruled fairly have them self to blame . ZANU PF will never win a fair election and for same reason aren't addressing political reforms.

Eddy - 2 November 2018

What have you now smoked Strive ? Are you now insane ? How can ED be sincere when he is the godfather of corruption and rigging ? ED is milking the state via command agric, fuel, chrome, gold projects using his fronts like Tagwirei, Mushayavanhu, etc. How is ED sincere when he says USD and bond are 1:1 ?

Chihombori - 2 November 2018

truth,pfee and kambiri if you know better how sanctions are being imposed you wouldn't talk that insane US and the West they don't just work up and say let's impose sanctions to a certain country they give them warning to stop what could have cause to be imposed with sanctions kana maomesa makotsi moti havatiudze zvekuita nenyika yedu they will be no choice now the sanctions which are there is blocking investors because of corrupt government if they stop looting things will be fine and never hate Nero about sanctions zanu and government brought this for themselves not Nero and he is not even in the position of begging them or asking for them to be removed so live the small boy alone we all know who to blame

Innocent - 2 November 2018

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