p;- not to improve the situation, but to make things worse.
The once vibrant agricultural industry has been destroyed – to a point where the country now cannot feed itself even with good rains. The manufacturing sector has been severely damaged to a point where it cannot sustain a workforce of a few hundred thousand people. Nearly a million people were rendered homeless by brutal government action a year ago, and most of them are still living in the open despite much-touted construction exercises. Recent government interference in the lucrative mining industry has resulted in Zimbabwe being listed as the worst possible destination on earth for mining investment. Now the destroyers have turned their attention to the private health sector, which had managed to stagger on (despite near-impossible conditions) because of the dedication of health care staff, private medical insurance and a wealthy clientele. The comparison between this sector and the collapse of government’s health facilities throughout the country was obviously too much for health minister David Parirenyatwa to stomach.
He has now frozen all admission and consultation fees charged by private health operators. With inflation nudging 1000% such a freeze is the kiss of death. A similar move, earlier this year, saw the freezing of private school fees while government fees were increased by up to 1000% – leading to massive drop-out rates and continuing disturbances by university students throughout the country. When will this government learn to leave well alone? If it works – don’t ‘fix’ it.
Death threats for Morgan
The leaders of Zanu (PF) have threatened to kill opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai if he continues with his programme of mass resistance. In most civilised countries, such a threat is a criminal offence. But not in Zimbabwe where the ruling elite are above the law. Tsvangirai has refused to be intimidated by the threats and vowed to continue. We salute him.