By Anna Chibamu
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has failed to turn around the country’s economic as well as political fortunes and this calls for his resignation, former Finance Minister Tendai Biti has said.
Biti, who is MDC vice president, was responding to Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor John Mangudya’s announcement that the country will have the first notes and coins of the re-designated Zimbabwe Dollar in the next two weeks.
Mnangagwa’s administration in June announced the discontinuation of the multi-currency system adopted in 2009 and dominated by the US dollar.
Using Statutory Instrument 142/19, authorities also effectively returned the local currency as sole medium of exchange but had not produced the notes and coins to go with the decision.
Writing on his twitter handle, on Wednesday, the Harare East MP said Mnangagwa and his government have become a threat to Zimbabwe’s sovereignty.
“The currency confusion, power shortages, inflation, the doctors’ strike and massive corruption have proven beyond doubt that Emmerson Mnangagwa has failed.
“He must step down or constitutional process must remove him,” said Biti.
Mnangagwa seized power in a military coup in November 2017 before calling for elections that he went on to win with a slim margin amid claims of rigging by the opposition.
Biti argued that the decision to print the new currency was recipe for disaster given the fundamentals required in an economy to introduce a currency are not yet in place.
“The illegitimate government has gone nuts. How does a government change currency three times in a year? A fresh talk of adopting the Rand. Fact is they can adopt any currency they want but without the right macroeconomic conditions prevailing, it is a total waste of time,” said Biti.
Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube in the past few days seemed to have indicated Zimbabwe was considering adopting the South African Rand as its anchor currency.
Biti added: “They went through the original Zimbabwe Dollar, then they brought, then the bearer cheques which they again bastardised. Then they went through the USD, the bond note and the RTGS$.
“They can bring 100 other currencies but it will not help. There is no confidence in them and no one trusts them.”
Biti reiterated that economics is a science of logic and planning, “not a kick and hope nor kick and rush; nor a prophecy.”
“That a country can introduce three currencies in a year is criminal economics. The consequences from a planning, accounting and economic view point are catastrophic,” said Biti.
President Mnangagwa has however attributed the current situation to sanctions imposed by the US and its Western allies.