Govt railroads business, diplomats to cry over sanctions

By Nkosana Dlamini

Government has railroaded businesses, ambassadors, women and youth groups to come 25 October and vent their frustrations with sanctions slapped on the country.

The day set was set aside annually to bash the Western embargo.

The SADC Anti-Sanctions Solidarity Day was bought by the regional block at a SADC summit Tanzania 2019 as a day of solidarity with its troubled member against the measures.

This was after government, under President Emmerson Mnangagwa, had represented to its regional allies that the measures were an unnecessary act of aggression against the country, a sovereign territory.

At a post-cabinet media briefing Tuesday, Information Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said President Mnangagwa will headline the activities with a keynote speech while the rest will testify about their troubles under the York of Sanctions.

Added the minister, “The negative impact of the sanctions on ordinary Zimbabweans will be highlighted through testimonies from affected businesses and other population groups, including women, the youth and vulnerable groups across all socio-economic sectors.

“The programmes will be broadcast on all media platforms throughout the month of October, climaxing on 25 October, 2021.

“The activities will also include engagements of the Diaspora, diplomatic corps and SADC missions.

“Media briefings, interviews and webinars by Zimbabwean Ambassadors in their areas of accreditation will be conducted, while statements on the sanctions situation will be delivered during bilateral and multilateral meetings.

“Buoyed by this solidarity towards Zimbabwe’s cause, Cabinet calls upon all Zimbabweans to play their part in highlighting our plight, given that our friends are in full support of our initiatives towards self-emancipation and attainment of our set Vision 2030. Zimbabwe remains committed to engage and re-engage in its relations with the international community.”

The sanctions were imposed 2001 and 2003 by the US and its European allies as a measure to force change of behaviour within the then Robert Mugabe led administration, which came under fire for rights abuses, poll theft, unbridled high level corruption, among other accusations.

The West has set conditions to be followed by Zimbabwean authorities for the measures to be scrapped.