ZPP’s October monitoring report is now out. It gives us an overview of the economic crisis, inflation and other pertinent human rights issues. Read on for more.
Resist Reject and Report Violence 2023 (#RRRV2023)
This month, the Zimbabwe Peace Project introduces a new feature to refine its campaign; resist, reject and report violence ahead of the 2023 election. The campaign, #RRRV2023 is specifically designed as an early warning system of political violence with the hope that relevant stakeholders can adopt preventive measures. It is also designed to create active citizen participation in resisting, rejecting and reporting acts of political violence.
Economic Crisis In Zimbabwe
When President Emmerson Mnangagwa took over power in Zimbabwe in November 2017, a school teacher employed by the government was earning about US$500.00 a month, an amount that, although not sufficient, could meet the basic needs. At the end of October 2017, the Consumer Council of Zimbabwe (CCZ) estimated the food basket at $146,12 per month, an amount that was not affordable for the generality of Zimbabweans as characterised by the income of teachers. Four years later, an October 2021 teacher’s payslip has a net salary of ZWL16,000, equivalent to just 89 US dollars (based on the parallel market rate). The grocery needs as at September 2021 were at about $16 498,65 (about 87 US dollars), according to the Consumer Council of Zimbabwe (CCZ).
Behind the inflation
Government has continued to deny responsibility for what is happening to the economy, and has instead chosen to blame, as usual, unnamed ‘economic and currency saboteurs. The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, which is responsible for pegging the forex rate, has gone on a spree, arresting businesses using the parallel market rate. This is not a new phenomenon. Faced with a runaway inflation in 2008, the then Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Gideon Gono, blamed sanctions, banks, the stock exchange, parallel currency dealers and insurance companies. As well as firing bankers, he blacklisted more than 20 investment companies and froze their accounts. The script is still the same as the current Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor John Mangudya is still using the same tactics but expecting a different outcome.
The chiefs are above the law?
After telling delegates at the Zanu PF annual conference that chiefs would not leave the ruling party, Chief Fortune Charumbira said he was openly violating the Constitution because chiefs could not be bound by any law as their institution was there before laws were made. “What Constitution? What came first, the Constitution or the chiefs? We came first as chiefs before the Constitution,” he told a local daily newspaper. He said there was nothing amiss about his declaration of support for Zanu PF. Charumbira told delegates at the Zanu PF conference in Bindura that the traditional leaders were the owners of the party. “We come as owners of the party. The reason for the existence of Zanu PF is all about traditional leadership and it is about injustice,” Chapter 15.2 of the Constitution provides that traditional leader are not allowed to bear allegiance to any political party or to participate in partisan politics.
Read the full report here (2MB PDF)
Source: Zimbabwe Peace Project