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The economy falters

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The economy falters
YEARNING FOR CHANGE: MDC supporters at a march on Tuesday

When President Robert Mugabe was booted out last November, many celebrated as they thought his demise would usher in a sound, vibrant economy.

But alas, almost seven months into the new dispensation, the economic situation seems to be going from bad to worse.

Prices of basic commodities have shot up over the last couple of days while fuel prices increase almost every 24 hours.

At the moment, the average price of petrol is $1.45 per litre (P14.50) while diesel costs around $1.33 per litre (P13.30).

And at the rate at which these prices are going up, it won’t come as a surprise when we soon reach the $2 per litre mark, after all we have been billionaires before so anything is possible!

By the way fuel prices increases in Zimbabwe have nothing to do with the world wide trend because even when fuel prices go down, here they go up!

While the new regime is constantly making false promises of fixing the economy and ending cash shortages, it is now evident that with the economy, it clearly won’t be an easy walk in the park.

I am sure, like most people, the powers that be thought Mugabe was the stumbling block to a stable economy and that when they come in, Zimbabwe would in no time become a land of milk and honey.

However, the country seems to be going into the red with each passing day, with sentiment on the streets being that the main problem is Zanu PF as a party and not necessarily who is in charge of it.

It seems the people no longer want Zanu PF, whether led by President Emmerson Mnangagwa or whoever, because this is the same party that presided over the country’s collapse.

So as people prepare to cast their ballots on July 30, it is becoming clear they want change that will bring real change to their lives.

Whether that will be achieved or not is a story for another day, after all they have stolen opposition election victory before and history might repeat itself if word that junta won’t allow opposition leader, Nelson Chamisa to rule is anything to go by.

This longing for change could be the reason why thousands took to the streets of Harare on Tuesday for a march for free and fair elections.

The demonstration, which was organised by the opposition Movement for Democratic Change Alliance, was meant to press the government to be transparent with the process of printing the ballot papers and to allow credible, independent external auditors to audit the voter’s roll.

There have in the past been concerns over the presence of ghost voters (to aid Zanu PF’s false victory) hence the call for the auditing of the voter’s roll.

But, knowing the characters in the ruling party and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, the march, though successful in terms of a large turnout, may well have been a waste of time as the demands put forward are unlikely be taken into consideration.

It would be unfortunate if the opposition boycott the election as that would automatically hand Zanu PF victory on a silver platter.

Mugabe once ran a one-man race and subsequently declared himself the winner when the late Morgan Tsvangirai boycotted elections.

Who knows, Mnangangwa might do the same if the opposition decides not to partake in the elections.