Zim ‘close to collapse’

ZIMBABWE is "closer than ever to complete collapse" under the weight of a deepening economic crisis that threatens to destabilise southern Africa, according to an independent report released last week.
The International Crisis Group (ICG) called on the Southern African Development Communit

y (SADC) group of nations to overcome internal divisions and focus on ways to persuade President Robert Mugabe to step down.
“SADC must resolve internal differences about how hard to press into retirement Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe’s 83-year-old president and liberation hero, and the wider international community needs to give it full support,” the Brussels-based think tank said in a report.
“Four out of five of the country’s 12 million people live below the poverty line and a quarter have fled, mainly to neighbouring countries.”
“A military-led campaign to slash prices has produced acute food and fuel shortages, and conducting any business is becoming almost impossible.”
“Western sanctions – mainly targeting just over 200 members of the leadership with travel bans and asset freezes – have proven largely symbolic,” said the ICG.
“And general condemnations from the UK and US if anything (are) counterproductive because they help Mugabe claim he is the victim of neo-colonial ambitions.”
“Some SADC leaders remain Mugabe supporters, and there is a risk the organisation will accept cosmetic changes that further entrench the status quo,” the report said. – ZimOnline

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