Resistance to Zim bond notes introduction
From MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare, Zimbabwe
HARARE, (CAJ News) – THE introduction of the so-called bond notes is set to aggravate tensions between the Zimbabwean government and the public already outraged by worsening economic crisis and extensive corruption.
Without giving a specific date, Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ), Governor John Mangudya, has announced the new currency will be in circulation before end of October.
Mangudya said the value of the notes would be at par with the US dollar.
By the end of the year, it is anticipated $75 million (about R1,125 billion) of the notes will be in circulation.
The notes, whose introduction the public, economists, opposition parties, human rights groups and private companies have resisted, will replace the multi-currency system mainly the US dollar and South
Critics of the bond notes believe the currency is a ploy to revive the defunct Zimbabwe dollar, which the country stopped using in 2008 at the height of the economic crisis with inflation running over 230 million percent.
“The government never consulted with anybody. We see this as actions of irresponsible and less caring government,” said Kudakwashe Urombo, a Harare economic commentator.
Renowned Zimbabwean economist, John Robertson, said the introduction of bond notes would destroy “trust” in the economy.
“The trust is not there and the value of the bond notes will not be sustained,” said Robertson.
The introduction of the bonds is to mitigate a cash crunch that has seen government occasionally fail to pay civil servants.
This, and widespread corruption by the administration of President Robert Mugabe, has culminated in the most sustained protests against the government since independence in 1980.
The planned introduction of the bond notes was among issues protesters raised this past weekend as pressure mounted on the government.
Police again reacted viciously to the protests.
The chaos happened as Mugabe was overseas attending the Non-Aligned Movement and United Nations summits in Venezuela and US respectively.
– CAJ News
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