Social movements’ joint press statement on Crisis in Zimbabwe

Tuesday 02 May 2017 Statement of Crisis in Zimbabwe By Citizens of the Republic of Zimbabwe
We come together today in solidarity as citizens of the nation of Zimbabwe, to condemn in the strongest possible terms the shambolic and embarrassing state of our nation, 37 years after attaining independence.
As the citizens of Zimbabwe, we do this exercising our full rights as stated in section 67 of P. 2 in Chapter 4 of the constitution of Zimbabwe, “To participate, individually or collectively in gatherings or groups or in any other manner, in peaceful activities to influence, challenge or support the policies of the Government or any political or whatever cause.”
A year after we Zimbabweans young and old began publicly and fearlessly holding the Government to account on the misrule of our nation and mismanagement of resources, we find the Government still refusing to hear us. The situation is becoming worse by the day and we the ordinary people will not accept this any longer. We are standing together yet again to say NO! Enough is Enough!
Our economy has collapsed because of failing policies that are not conducive for investment and growth. We find ourselves at the mercy of a cash crisis which has already locked us out of our own hard carved cash and has made business a nightmare to conduct. There is no doubt that Bond notes have failed spectacularly because;

A. They are certainly not at par with the US dollars that we all originally banked,

B. They have served only to take away all the US dollars from the system,

C. They are not the ‘incentive only’ that the governor said they would be,

D. They are not even accessible.

In essence, the Government has once again succeeded in illegally taking our money as citizens. The honourable Governor of the Reserve bank is on record committing to us at a citizens meeting, that he would resign if the Bond notes failed. Bond notes have completely failed. We challenge the governor of the reserve bank to honour his word and resign as he promised to do in the event of failure. Corruption is still un-checked, as we still have no answer to the missing billions yet senior government and political officials live lavish lifestyles in the face of suffering masses. Not a single person has been questioned nor has a single report been made public in connection with the missing 15 billion dollars from diamond mining revenue. We challenge Government on clear answers and decisive action on the matter of the stolen USS15
Over the years and notably over the last 12 months, Government has intentionally trampled our rights as citizens. We have been brutally handled and harassed using the justice system simply because we exercised our constitutional right `to freedom of assembly and association, and freedom to demonstrate, protest and present petitions.’ Our citizens are right now being harassed at alarming levels by our Police who behave rabidly as they throw spikes with no regard for safety or preservation of precious human life. Everyday we are being tormented by the ridiculous Police roadblocks that are designed to do nothing else but siphon money out of us. We challenge Government to stop the abuse of justice and to stop police harassment on the citizens of Zimbabwe.
Today in the sad history of a free Zimbabwe, more of our citizens are living in abject poverty. This Government has failed in all its promises on job creation and poverty alleviation. More people are out of work, more families are going to bed hungry and millions of our citizens are leaving the country to escape poverty. Sadly some are even committing suicide. We cannot sit by and watch, something must urgently be done to save lives. We call on Government to radically change key policies and prioritise the lives of the suffering masses and not the political elite.
We have almost completely lost our critical infrastructures that deliver social services. Our health system is on its knees, our education system is weak and our welfare activity is now delivering nothing to the most underprivileged of our nation. Our hard working civil servants are working in the most deplorable facilities and with meagre earnings which govemment refuses to review whilst yet again our top govemment officials never go a single month without pay or a single year without new cars. As citizens we call for the urgent restoration of critical social services and the restoration of confidence in our civil service.
Every community in Zimbabwe matters. No one is more important than others. We condemn and reject the systematic marginalisation and exclusion of other Zimbabwean regions. We refuse to be divided and we most certainly refuse to be classed for whatever reason. We put the Government on notice that we will no longer accept marginalisation, division and being treated as second-rate citizens.
One of the most shameful occurrences in Zimbabwe is how our Government has treated our elderly. After they came back from the war they worked hard to develop our nation and just as they retired to enjoy their savings, they lost everything. In 2007-2008 our nation’s poor policies aided by corruption robbed them in broad daylight. But our determined parents and grand parents went back to work to rebuild and just as they wiped the sweat off their brow, our Government came again and in 2016 -2017 we are watching them helplessly get pillaged again. They sleep for days in bank queues, they faithfully come with their tobacco only to be ‘surprise taxed’ and still spend weeks trying to get their money out whilst their families starve yet Govemment is paid cash for that tobacco. We challenge Government to resolve the cash crisis and restore confidence in the banking sector.
The biggest losers in all this are the youth. The young people of our nation are amongst the brightest in the region yet we are being cheated out of our chance to grow and raise our families in a decent society. We are graduating in our thousands every year and ending up on the streets doing nothing. We are not permitted to lead, we are not permitted to flourish with ideas and we are not permitted to speak our minds. We are used for political mileage, we are used for violence and we are used as cheap disposable labour. Today we are drawing a line in the sand as we start to find each other and stand in solidarity for what we want for our future.
To our fellow citizens in every part of the world, we know the Zimbabwe we want and this is not it. The Zimbabwe we want:

  1. Respects the rule of law and in particular the constitution of our land.
  2. Respects the original ideals of the liberation struggle.
  3. Works zealously to protect our women, the disabled, the elderly and children.
  4. Promotes the youth and sets them up to be successors of a better nation.
  5. Puts the interests of the country before those of self or political affiliation.

This Zimbabwe we want is within reach. But it is only within reach if we come together, stand together, speak together and act together. Today as we challenge our Govemment, we invite you on a journey of finding each other for that one common goal — CREATING THE ZIMBABWE WE WANT. Across tribal lines, racial divides, political affiliations and generational lines let’s find each other and save this country. Soon we will make a call for you fellow citizen to find your place with us. Boldly answer the call. The unprecedented mobilisation of Zimbabweans everywhere has begun.
We thank you
#ThisFlag BUYA (Bulawayo Youth Arise) #SheVotes2018 #Tajamuka/Sesjikile #ThisGown #OccupyAfricaUnitySquare #Zimbabwe Yadzoka/Mayibe, ZINASU (Zimbabwe National Students Union) ZWIPA (Zimbabwe Women In Politics Alliance) CitizensZW #MyZimbabwe #LeaveNoYouthBehind Smile Africa The Zimbabwe We Want Youth Movement NAVUZ (National Vendors Union of Zimbabwe)


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