If I were Mnangagwa!


President Emmerson Mnangagwa has been under siege since the 30 July elections with main opposition Movement for Democratic Change Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa claiming he won the elections and violence erupting in the capital leaving six people dead.

Then there was the cholera outbreak which claimed 54 lives exposing how poor and inadequate our infrastructure is.

As if this was not enough, when Mnangagwa was beginning to think he could now sit down and work on reviving the economy things went haywire when the bond note plunged against the United States dollar and prices rocketed.

Now he is facing the problem with the most critical sector, the health sector. Pharmacies are refusing to accept medical aid cards, bond notes, electronic money and are insisting on being paid in US dollars.

I don’t know how this works. If the pharmacies are getting foreign currency from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, buy tablets for 68US cents as one legislator said today, and then sell them for US$12, that is criminal.

A lot of things happening in Zimbabwe at the moment do not make sense. But suffice, a colleague says if he were Mnangagwa, he would just say: “Guys, we have a multiple currency system in this country, you can charge your clients in whatever currency you want, but if you charge clients in US dollars, pay your workers in US dollars, if you charge rands pay them in rands, if you accept bond notes and electronic cash, you also pay your workers in that currency.”

No one would charge in US dollars, my colleague believes, because most businesses that insist on payment in US dollars cannot afford to pay their workers in US dollars.

So instead of waiting for a solution from the government, workers for those companies charging in US dollars can help us by demanding that they be paid in US dollars.


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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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