Zimbabwe: It Takes More Than 100 Days to Turn Economy Around - Says Mnangagwa

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa (file photo).
26 February 2018

President Emmerson Mnangagwa has urged patience, saying turning around the country's tanked economy takes time as Zimbabweans take stock of his first 100 days in office.

Mnangagwa took over power last November after long-time ruler Robert Mugabe was toppled by the military, ending a 37-year reign widely described as politically brutal and economically disastrous.

The country's new ruler, a long-time Mugabe aide, immediately declared that it would no longer be business as usual for government and ordered his ministers to come up with 100-day action plans.

Now with the 100-days nearly up, political rivals are already mocking the lack of any substantive achievements by the new administration.

Defending his government, Mnangagwa said he was aware of public frustration over the pace of change and committed to be a "listening president".

"Let me assure you that, though we have some major achievements, this is just the beginning," the Zanu PF leader said in a Facebook video.

"After 100 days of Action we are on the right path and we will keep working to increase the pace of reform.

"In this spirit, let me report to you on just a few things we have achieved so far, across all areas it has been a time of Action.

"On the economy, we passed a bold responsible budget that cut huge swathes of waste, scaled back the Indigenisation Act to open the economy to investment, facilitated greater use of mobile money to combat cash crisis and cut excise duty on petrol and small bank transfers."

Regarding corruption, Mnangagwa said the 'Zero Tolerance' rhetoric had been backed up by action.

"We instituted three-month amnesty to get back stolen funds, mandated all cabinet ministers to declare their assets, created dedicated anti-corruption courts in all provinces and clamped down on road blocks," he said.

"Internationally, we had been working hard to build our international relation and bring in investment. So far, we have secured $3billion of investment commitment from some of the biggest companies in the world."

He added; "In in terms of human developments we have ensured free health care for vulnerable groups while increasing the health and education budget dramatically.

"After 100 days of action we are on the right path and we will keep working to increase the pace of reform."

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