Ever 2002 when the West imposed targeted sanction against President Mugabe and a select few in his inner circle the regime’s propaganda machine and spin doctors have used the sanctions as the excuse for the regime’s failure to deliver economic prosperity. However, in the last few years the excuse has lost its plausible appeal even amongst the most naïve and gullible members; especially in the light of the confirmed stories of looting and plunder involving mouth-watering sums of money. The regime’s allocated its self-proclaimed propaganda guru, Professor Moyo, money to spruce up the sanctions excuse.
“A department under Professor Jonathan Moyo's ministry, the Zimbabwe Manpower Development Fund (ZIMDEF) is planning to carry out a 12-month in-depth study on the impact of sanctions imposed by the West,” reported Bulawayo 24.
“A total of $150 000 00 has been set aside.”
“A total of $150 000 00 has been set aside.”
This is a sick regime it has truckloads of money to waste whilst millions of people suffer and hundreds die every month of simple and preventable diseases.
For decades the regime has denied that corruption and mismanagement were not problems in Zimbabwe and has blamed everything going and everyone else it could for the country’s crippling economic woes including drought and “the illegal sanctions imposed by the British Imperialists and their wicked Western Allies,” President Mugabe has often said.
In February this year President Mugabe admitted government had been “swindled” out $15 billion of diamond revenue.
“Lots of smuggling and swindling has taken place and the companies that have been mining, I want to say, robbed us of our wealth,” Mugabe said, justifying proposed nationalisation of diamond firms.
The nationalization has not work because lost week Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa told the nation the industry had produced nearly one million carats of diamonds in the last six months against the expected six million carats. So the smuggling and swindling has not stopped!
So why is the regime spending good money studying the effect of sanctions at a time when the nation continues to lose billions of dollars every month because the looting and plunder in Marange has not been dealt with. Stopping the looting in Marange makes sense also because this is something within our power to put right as contrast the sanctions which only the West will decide whether or not to cancel.
But to come back to the sanctions, why is the regime spending $150 000 to study “the impact of sanctions” on the economy fourteen years after the sanctions were first imposed? Over the years the regime has come up with all manner of policy adjustments to mitigate the impact of the sanctions including its well-known “Look East” policy. For a while the nation told its policies were working but given the reality on the ground of continued economic collapse, the regime would soon revert back to blaming sanctions again.
The regime followed several strategies to force the West to end the sanctions including mounting a legal challenge of the EU sanction which the regime lost. President Mugabe has kept up his strategy of denouncing the West at every opportune moment, telling the British “to keep your England and I will keep my Zimbabwe”! And yet a few weeks later he would be the one begging the West for one thing or another.
One can guess as to the purpose of this new study; the regime is feeling the heat caused by the worsening economic meltdown the regime needs a new and fresh impetus to its story line of blaming sanctions for the country’s economic woes. The study must show that sanctions have costed a hell lot more than $15 billion looted from the country in six years! That is a tall order, given the country has lost most of its industries and agricultural sector is now importing everything even something as basic as fresh milk!
The irony is the country is in this economic mess because Zanu PF would not admit there was mismanagement and corruption and thus nip the problems in the bud. By denying the regime has allowed the problems to grow and spread and now they have become so big they are overwhelming the national economy.
Yes corruption and wastage exist in every human system but no system on earth can withstand much less prosper whilst losing $15 billion plus every few years when its GDP is a mere $14 billion! Professor Moyo’s challenge is to cook up a story to show Zimbabwe has lost more than $15 billion in lost revenue because of sanctions which would explain why Zanu PF continues to do nothing to end corruption – a very tall order even for an experience and shameless liar like him!