ZIMBABWE – Former Finance Minister and opposition PDP leader, Tendai Biti says Zimbabweans should brace for a more turbulent 2016 as government remains clueless on how to reverse the current economic tailspin that has culminated in its continued failure to pay its workforce on time.
However, Economic Planning and Investment Promotion Minister Simon Khaya Moyo has admitted the government faced a challenge but pinned the crisis on fickle weather patterns he says have curtailed the country’s ability to leverage economic recovery through the mainstay agriculture.Speaking in an interview with RadioVop on Monday, Biti said the country’s economic outlook remained constrained under the current Zanu PF administration.“Not with these clowns; not with Mugabe not with Chinamasa,” Biti said.
“Right now it is quite clear that they are failing to pay civil servants; it is going to be worse, there would be no foreign direct investment, there would be more toxicity in government.”Biti insisted the country will again be submerged in endless Zanu PF infighting and “will continue being arrested by this huge envelop of incompetency and recklessness, adding, a political solution was best.
“The only solution is to find a political solution that liquidates Zanu PF and give Zimbabweans a fresh start,” he said.“I can tell you 2016 is going to be an absolute disaster. If you think 2015 was bad, then think again.“We are going to see more destruction, more delegitimisation, more toxicity, more poverty and more suffering of our people.
”President Robert Mugabe’s government banks the country’s recovery prospects on its economic blueprint, ZimAsset which has been dismissed by critics as a wish list that needs billions of scarce US dollars to operationalise.Government is at pains to summon inexhaustible but pricey Chinese investment in efforts to bridge the FDI vacuum created by years of massive deindustrialisation, stringent indigenisation policies and the informalisation of the national economy.Biti says the much-hyped Chinese deals will not yield any immediate benefits as they need up to four years for locals to start enjoying if implemented diligently.
Reached for comment, Minister SK Moyo, who is also Zanu PF spokesperson, distanced his party from the current economic mess which he said was a climate induced calamity.“Government is not in charge of climatic change, the weather is beyond our control. The whole religion is being affected by this,” Moyo said.
Challenged the current economic crisis was not only a result of unpredictable weather, Moyo was adamant all starts with the country’s capabilities to benefit through agriculture.“The bleak economic outlook is climate induced; obviously if there is no rain how do you produce?” he said.“We are doing all we can to face the challenges. That is why we are resuscitating virtually all irrigation schemes and we are also ofcourse making sure that as much food as possible goes to those areas facing severe drought.”