Failing to face the ugly truth For a long time, sanctions have been blamed for Zimbabwe’s economic troubles. It’s always easier, I guess, to point fingers at the next person rather than to admit failure and take responsibility for any wrong doing. I am one of the people who believe sanctions have had very little impact in hurting the country’s economy. Instead corruption, looting, greed and poor governance are responsible for the downfall of this once economic gem. On Tuesday, scores of people including school children in their uniforms, obviously organized by the government, marched in the streets of various cities and towns to denounce sanctions. In fact, October 25 is a day set aside by SADC as a solidarity day against illegal sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe. But we do know, anyway, that these sanctions are targeted at individuals and entities that are perceived to be aiding human rights violations. According to the regime’s narrative, Zimbabwe could be a better place if it were not for the sanctions imposed by the West. This was the same song sung by the late former President Robert Mugabe, that the United Kingdom, the United States of America and their allies are bent on seeing Zimbabwe and ordinary Zimbos suffer. They don’t talk about the looting that has been taking place for years with the accused people never made to pay back the money or held accountable for their actions. During Mugabe’s time, a record US$15billion from diamond revenue just vanished! However, Mugabe spoke about it as if he was referring to insignificant money that had gone missing. Imagine what those billions could have done had they been put in state coffers and put to good use. Instead, a few individuals pocketed the dough and that was it. And yet they blame sanctions for our troubles. Those in corridors of power lead a soft life. They fly across the world to shop in high end stores, dine in fine restaurants and sleep in expensive, exclusive hotels. While there, they log onto the Wi-Fi and tweet about how sanctions are a stumbling block to the growth of the country – tweets that probably won’t reach home for several hours because most of the country will be plunged into darkness, enduring yet another lengthy power cut! Yet it is known that they finance their lavish lifestyle from corruption. Recently, our Clerk of Parliament was exposed for approving a tender to buy more than 100 laptops for US$9, 000 each. The same man had the audacity to place adverts in the local newspapers this week, denouncing sanctions, saying they are hindering attainment of developmental goals. They can continue with their rhetoric but we do know the root cause of our woes; I am sure they do too but can never confront the ugly truth!