Parliamentarians from different political persuasions have called upon President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration to expeditiously deal with the obtaining economic crisis, warning that the situation threatens national security.
Temba Mliswa, an independent MP for Norton, told rural Norton residents last Monday that the government cannot always use security forces to crush protests. Said Mliswa:
If there is anything that will lead the country into ruins, it is uncontrolled price increases. It is a national security threat because the youths are not employed; they cannot afford food and recreation.
We cannot rely on deploying soldiers and the police each time people complain about price increases which are not matched by increased salaries.
Harare East MP, Tendai Biti (MDC Alliance), lamented the over taxation of already burdened citizens, warning of possible civil unrest. Biti is quoted as saying:
The government’s failure is what will lead to unrest. What led to the January 14 protests was Mnangagwa’s ill-advised announcement of fuel price increases.
Why would you increase the tax on citizens who are already shouldering the burden of too high taxes? Why would someone introduce an artificial exchange rate?
Why would someone introduce an artificial currency, the RTGS (dollar) which we all know is no different from the bond notes? This is what will lead to civil unrest.
In January this year citizens across the country took to the streets in protest over the government’s decision to hike the price of fuel, making it the highest in the world at the time.
The protests only came to an end after the government ordered a brutal clampdown and shutting down of the internet.