Sunday, 28 December 2008

Zimbabwe a nation starving

The United nations say that 5.5 million Zimbabweans need urgent food aid. Zimbabwe now has the highest inflation rate in the world with a staggering 230 million percent. Zimbabwe is a country full of millionaires but uncomfortably every one seems to be starving.

Lacks of investment over the past decade have resulted in the health system now at breaking point. The recent cholera out break has affected 1100 people resulting in the deaths of scores more. These are the signs of; and a symptomatic of Zimbabwe’s crumbling health system.

Sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe have contributed to the economic imbalance now at pressure cooking point that face that once prosperous country. Mugabe has been a constant thorn in the side of the West; his controversial land reform policy has not won him many friends and this has affected his standing internationally.

Zimbabwe would be better off; if not burdened by sanctions. Mugabe has applied for aid and trade. The country and has been granted some aid, but the IMF and World Bank have refused Mugabe loans. Sanctions imposed on his regime have hurt him and the economy has suffered significantly as a result.

Life in Zimbabwe is hard and challenging for ordinary citizens. Life expectancy is at an all time low. There is no food in the shops and for those who can find food they have no money to spend. Zimbabwe for all intensive purpose is in trouble. Be it because of sanctions, corruption, incompetence or unwillingness for the government to act in the interest of the poor.

Zimbabwe has many problems, recent pressure from the International community targeted at Mugabe, to convince Zimbabweans that Mugabe in not the right person to rule them is a mistake.

Mugabe has been the leader of his Zanu-PF party for a long time, this has lead to calls from the international community; demanding that someone else take over the reigns of power.

Such calls can only resonate a strong-minded Mugabe; who somehow seems to thrive on all the attention and chaos surrounding his spectacle. It is not right for external elements to interfere in political and internal affairs of Zimbabwe. Zimbabweans are mature enough to choose their own leaders. Zimbabweans have the exclusive right to say who should go and who should stay.

Current power sharing talks between Mugabe and Tsvangarai brokered by former South African president Thambo Mbeki must succeed – preventing Zimbabwe from plunging further into the abyss.


Desiree Younge said...

Ayo, I agree that Zimbabweans have to choose their own leader, but the situation has escalated beyond just a political choice. It's a desperate humanitarian issues that the international community (Africans in particularly) need to make a lot more noise about. I know that the voice of civil society is paralyzed. Who is advocating or speaking for ... Read Morethe people of Zimbabwe? The peace talks keep going but is Morgan supported by the people? What can 'we' do? I have friends who live there and hold their breath for cash from the outside which is the only source of income that is keeping them ALIVE.. but they do report.. barely. Hyperinflation and just the simple lack of food is squeezing them to ration and make very difficult choices. Please continue to keep the story alive.

Ayo Johnson said...

Desiree you point is valid -- Great comment all round – Zimbabwe is a country in desperate trouble !!

Nana K. Oppong-Damoah said...

Zimbabwe to me is a test case. It is an examination as to whether the world and its leaders have learnt from events in the past. It is also a case that will test if the world really cares about persons or protocols.
After the rwandan genocide, one will have taught that the world in general and particularly the AU and other such agencies will be more willing to activate interferences in the internal affairs of African countries to ensure the survival of human beings. So much has been said and done about human rights and the right to live as humanely as possible. But are we ready to walk the talk? Will world leaders actually do something to prevent the desires and fears of one man from killing millions of people and incapacitating the futures of thousands? Will Mugabe be toppled because he is gradually turning the country into a failed state and ruining the lives of the very people he swore to protect or the powers that be will become the ghostly gazers who just talk?
Will the nations of the world that can really do something do something or will they just look on with a nonchalant sense because their interest are not threatened?
I believe zimbabwe will answer these questions.

Syl Juxon Smith said...

Zimbabwe is in a Apocalyptic State . We seem to be looking at the surface of the wound rather than the actual cause. As I always trumpet, African leaders have failed the continent period. What we see now is born out of sequences of events leading to decay. The West has a limit they help. Why do we always wait or run to the West to solve an Home Grown situation when we are called Soveriegn States? Where is AU and other regional organisations or African civil and Human Right Activists? Where is Amnesty and other local chapters including NGOs? We need answers to these facilitators of peace and progress. You will eventually see and hear all of them when ZIMBABWE finally explodes. Leaderships in Africa is bankcrupt of ideas and blurr in vision which makes the way forward impotent of solutions. Other crisis started in this same format i.e DARFUR, DRC, SOMALIA, PALESTINE, LEBANON all with similar ingredients with proximity and burden to progress and welfare of the Africa continent

Sean Carter said...

Before I comment on Magabe I first would like to say research the peace agreement negotiated by Magabe and the colonists along with the UK and the U.S. The U.S. and UK did virtually nothing of what they agreed to. And they never had any intentions to do so. But having said expect the Devil to do anything other than what a Devil does is to be nieve and makes you unworthy of leadership. European Superpowers don't make deals with revolutionary leaders it ever intends to keep. The name of the game is NEO-COLONIALISM! That means I expliot your land, resourses and people with out me having to necessarily occupy your land. Although Magabe did a great thing in liberating Zimbabwe. That liberation does not give him the unmittigated right to govern. Time and time again he makes moves from bribery to threats of death to maintain power. And when the people get restless he decides to redistribute land to pacify the people. He doesn't however get them the help they need to work the land.

Magabe was one of my heroes. Unfortunately he has become the thing he revolted against. whether he was forced into tyrany or chose it of his own free will. A choice was made. And at the same time I question whether the opposition candidate represent the peoples interests or international interests. I agree with you Ayo. Let whatever solution may come be an African one and support African interests first.

Bonecrkr said...

The international community absolutely should not help zimbabwe in any manner whatsoever.

The cause of their famine and of the cholera and anthrax outbreaks is a direct result of the genocide they committed against their white population. Almost all the workers who ran the health care system, kept the water clean and grew the food, were white. Now they are dead and these problems are a direct result.

The people of zimbabwe DESERVE their fate and hate the west with a passion.

Znaika said...

Big part of Zimbabweans that now live in extreme poverty and die from cholera willingly supported Mugabes terrorists in 70ies, cheered white emigration in 80ies and actively participated in eviction of white farmers in 2000-now. They elected Mugabe and most of them supported him. And up till now there is no repentance and there is no remorse among Zimbabweans for what has been done. Many still sincerely believe that it is not them, but USA, UK and others, who are guilty for their plight.

Syl Juxon Smith said...

With Hindsight - The Way Forward 2009

The Future of Business-Trade and Aid in Africa. Case Study Sierra Leone

The world financial institutions, banks, housing mortgage businesses, car industries, the oil and petro chemical industry, labour workforce experiencing major job cut across board, and other miscellaneous industries continue to witness a sporadic negative effect taking a down trend sending the globe major players into virtual economic recession. This is not a good sign for the African continent and its governance machinery especially Sierra Leone whose budget is donor and Aid driven. In the coming days a positive approach, optimism and moderation is very essential, a crucial tool for every Sierra Leonean both local and in the diasporas if the country is to make progress and evolve from the 2008 UN (HDI), positioning Sierra Leone last in the world which no citizens and even friends are happy or pleased about. This is not only a political indictment but a national condemnation as well, a predicament which must be squarely apportioned and accepted by all.

Both citizenry and the media focus on the past conflict, poverty and the behaviour of politicians and the governmental machinery in the handling – of debt, aid, poverty and service of infrastructural assets influenced the way Sierra Leone is discussed externally, reinforcing perceptions of a country of numerous problems affecting investor’s confidence doing business in the country.
Sierra Leone was and still appears to be seen as a risky country with little understanding of its diversity and internal dynamics to do business. The Income Electric (energy provider from Nigeria) saga with the government has buttressed this view in many minds which must not be taken lightly or brushed under the political carpet. Image or character of a country is dented and affected more so by perceptions garner from a single event which can take a long time to control, repair or recover from.

If you are branded a thief or corrupt will be a stigma making it very difficult to find genuine partners anywhere both local and international to work with period. But despite the presence of these obvious problems, the country deserves to be seen as a country of opportunities. Business leaders, and mostly investors in and out of Africa, feel this growing sense of confidence in the future of Sierra Leone, but playing the wait and see strategy in the unfolding scenarios pertaining to the new government’s ability and capacity to handle situations both seen and unforeseen is the main issue at present. As the saying goes, all hands on deck! Yes but what part of the deck?

Anonymous said...

as others have said these "people" deserve all the suffering that is coming there way. They rape, murder and torture white farmers and now they have famine? good! karma is a bitch

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