The question is, are we where we are because of sanctions or corruption? Since the year 2000, Zimbabwe spoke of the crippling sanctions to the economy. This resulted in government adopting a Look East policy.
O Gutu, Our Reader
If sanctions were not in place the time Zimbabwe discovered diamonds, the country would be having first-class infrastructure, but because of sanctions diamonds were sold clandestinely at way below market price and for obvious reasons there was little accountability, if any.
Some would want to call this corruption, but no it was sanctions busting. Those that were calling for our diamonds to be sanctioned even during the Government of National Unity period are today at the forefront pointing at corruption in the diamond industry then, but all right-thinking individuals should be pointing fingers at them.
Today managers in State-owned companies and central government are not making decisions. The elephant in the room is the new stupid narrative of Corruption. So it is the new narrative that is the number one enemy to development, under sanctions.
Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) is over-stepping its mandate and is on a witch hunt. As a new republic, we need to start on a new platform where we put in systems, new ways of doing things and drawing a line against economic crimes.
Old transgressions need to be forgiven. Zimbabwe, including President Emmerson Mnangagwa must be born again like those in the Christian world say. We cannot just talk of political dialogue, engagement and forgiveness for those that wronged or were wronged politically. Forgiveness for economic crimes is equally very important.
In my view, very few if any of those that were in power during the late President Robert Mugabe and today are in the echelons of power are clean. Everyone claims to have a dossier of this one and so and so. So we all need to clean ourselves and start afresh, Mnangagwa included.
A new beginning is important. A new beginning will give the President the much-needed power to fight any transgressions and the much-needed push towards development under sanctions.
The elephant in the room are sanctions and application of law in retrospect in the so-called fight against corruption. There is need for a law that forgives all past economic crimes, but for one to qualify if monies are stashed outside in the form of cash or assets there is need for repatriation of same to be invested locally. Due to sanctions, Zimbabwe needs a machine-like administrative system. It is the system and a new way of doing business first, then consequences of going out of the new sanctions busting systems.