A country in crisis: Biti

Despite the progress made by the government in education and human resource development, Finance Minister Tendai
 Biti recently described Zimbabwe as a country in permanent crisis with
islands of stability here and there.

Biti
Biti

Presenting a report on Human Development
prepared by the United Nations Development Programme last
 Monday, Biti said
 constant conflict made it difficult for a country to develop or
prosper.

“Zimbabwe can be described as a country with a permanent crisis. It is
a country with temporal periods of peace and stability which reverts
back to instability and conflict,” he said.

Biti said Zimbabwe had never known peace as it was always
 involved in some conflict or another.

“If we look back at the history, Zimbabwe has never had more
 than four years of peace and stability. In each period there is always
something raising conflict, if not the Land Apportionment Act, it was
the First Chimurenga, the struggle of workers in the 1940s to 1950s,
the national war liberation 1950s to 1979, the Gukurahundi from1982 to
1987, the violence associated with the Land Reform, Operation 
Murambatsvina, the violence that came with the elections. The fact of
the matter is, Zimbabwe is in a permanent state of crisis and this is
not sustainable or equitable for the country’s development,” he said.

The finance minister said it was important to understand such
discourses because then the country could map its development plan
properly.

He said the report on human development was about learning
 to expand choices that were central to African discourses and would
result in people making the right decisions which lead to freedom.
“We have a long way to go in the pursuit of
happiness. Part of the problem is political instability. We have people
who have become shareholders of destruction and sustainability and
equity is absent, leading to no development,” he said.

Biti noted that instability had led to dwindling mortality rates.

The launch was also attended by ministers, senior government
 officials, United Nations agencies, ambassadors and representatives from
private and public sectors.

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