HARARE (Zimbabwe Investor) – Former Zimbabwe’s Finance Minister and leader of the Mavambo Kusile Dawn (MKD) party Dr Simba Makoni has lashed at claims by the Movement for Democratic Change led by Morgan Tsvangirai that their involvement in the inclusive government led stabilization of the economy.
Makoni, who is also a former Southern African Development Community (SADC) 1984 to 1993 executive secretary, attributed the economic stabilization to the people of Zimbabwe who he says rejected the Zimbabwe dollar.
“The people of Zimbabwe dollarised this economy in October 2007 long before Chinamasa made his announcement on January 2009 that the country was abandoning the Zimbabwe dollar. That is when dollarisation took place. That’s the only factor that brought some modicum of relief to Zimbabwean economy,” Makoni said.
Makoni described the performance of the inclusive government as “dismal and pathetic.” The MKD’s top man said the Prime Minister can not brag that he filled empty supermarket shelves when all the products in those shelves are imported.
“They also promised to stabilize the economy, well, as far as I know the economy continues to decline. I know that Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai will want to boast that the shops are full of goods it is true shops are full of goods, but whose product?
“I know that if you walked in to a Zimbabwean Supermarket in 2006 90 percent of the goods on the shelves there were made in Zimbabwe and the 10 percent that was imported were luxuries not basic commodities,” Makoni said.
Zimbabwe has struggled over the life of the inclusive government to deliver the expected economic recovery and growth due mainly to infighting between the parties in government.
The productive sector in Zimbabwe has continued to face severe operational constraints hindering production capacity increase. Finance Minister Tendai Biti recently reported that first quarter exports in 2013 raked in a paltry US$ 689 million against a import bill of US$1 739 billion.
Biti said the Zimbabwean economy needed to enhance its production capacity. Exports for the first three months of the year declined by 10.3 percent while imports increased by 14 percent compared to the same period last year.
The country is scheduled to hold a watershed general election expected to define the future of the country.