Unfair criticism of Tsvangirai

EDITOR - People are entitled to their views, but I find criticism of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s invitation of Chinese investors during his recent tour a little bit misplaced.


Prime Minister Tsvangirai was very clear in his invitation that investment should be based on a win-win basis, and win-win means that there will be no exploitation of anyone in the process, and everyone should benefit.

I find this statement by commentator Alois Dzvairo: “Tsvangirai is just trying to appease his partners in the coalition government,” in bad taste, and shows his ignorance on how inter-country investor relations work.

It is true that Chinese companies have abused workers, and ministers in government have pointed out some of the negative things that the Chinese companies have been involved in in Zimbabwe, and that is what the Prime Minister Tsvangirai must have been referring to by saying investments should be based on a win-win basis.

The situation deplored by Labour Minister Paurina Gwanyanya is certainly not one of those win-win situations that Zimbabweans need; the situation where the biggest diamond company in Marange Anjin, a Chinese company, is not remitting to Treasury, is one of those situations which does not, certainly, fit Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s description of a win-win situation.

China is a growing economy that cannot be ignored. It is investing in some developed countries, so why should Prime Minister Tsvangirai not show an interest in Chinese investment, as long as caution is taken to ensure that the investment benefits the people of Zimbabwe?

Any serious and law abiding investors must be allowed to invest in Zimbabwe, and the Chinese, as long as they uphold the laws of the country, should be no exception. The situation we find ourselves in where some Chinese companies are either exploiting Zimbabweans or are refusing to remit diamond proceeds to Treasury are an ugly development which needs to be corrected, not by Zanu(PF), but a different government which should be elected to replace the existing regime of Robert Mugabe

While it is good to be skeptical, what skeptical critics should do is to ask questions that will lead to answers. In this case, skeptical critics could have asked if the Prime Minister raised the concerns that have been expressed about Chinese companies in some of the meetings that he held, or if he plans to raise the same issues in future dealings.

If anything, Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s statement in China proves that when he gets into power, he will not mortgage the country for six pence as has been done by Mugabe to the same Chinese. His government will not enter into contract with foreign investors who will exploit Zimbabweans. – BENJAMIN CHITATE, New Zealand

Post published in: Letters to the Editor

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