Zim: President Mnangagwa’s first 50 days in office after disputed vote

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa has had a mixed bag of positives and negatives in his first 50 days in office, a report says.

Mnangagwa who was inaugurated in August after a disputed election in July finished his first 50 days in office this week.

According to the Zimbabwe Independent newspaper, analysts have described Mnangagwa’s first 50 days in office as a “mixed bag” of positives and negatives.

Economist Prosper Chitambara believed that Mnangagwa had come up with a number of positive policy changes which included the Transitional Stabilisation Programme that, however, has had some unintended consequences over the past few weeks.

Chitambara said the president’s failure to consult widely before the introduction of the policy led to key stakeholder not taking ownership of it.

He also said that although the president had commendably appointed a smaller cabinet, he should not have appointed deputy ministers.

Business consultant Simon Kayereka, on the other hand, said the major weakness during Mnangagwa’s reign so far had been the failure to unpeg the bond note and combat corruption.

Reports indicated that negatives were far outweighing the positives, as Mnangagwa was facing a herculean task in his bid to revive the country’s economy.

Shaky economy

Mnangagwa has promised a number of reforms since his inauguration, an AFP report said.

He pledged to revive the shaky economy, re-engage the international community and bring Zimbabwe out of international isolation, as part of a new dispensation which has promised to respect constitutionalism, human rights and open the country for business, said the report.

Mnangagwa’s biggest challenge so far has been the ongoing shortage of essential goods after the country’s finance minister Mthuli Ncube introduced a number of reforms aimed at kick starting the economy.

According to AP since the new finance minister announced a “stabilisation programme”, long lines for fuel, sometimes stretching for several kilometres have reappeared.

As the country’s economy continued to deteriorate, experts urged Mnangagwa and his government to “make the requisite changes needed to turn around the untenable situation” said a Daily News report.

Both businesses and economists warned that the country could be sinking to “dire levels that were seen in 2008 when record hyperinflation decimated the Zimbabwe dollar and left millions of citizens impoverished”, the report said.

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