The United Kingdom’s ambassador to Zimbabwe Mrs Melanie Robinson has reiterated that her country did not impose trade restrictions on Zimbabwe amid confusion as to what is really entailed by the sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe.
Her remarks come as Zimbabwe and the Southern African Community Development at large are gearing up for 25 October a day set aside by the regional body to call for the unconditional removal of sanctions.
Mrs Robinson posted on Twitter as the ruling ZANU PF has often cited sanctions as one of the leading factors that have affected its bid to run the country well. She posted:
There’s no UK trade embargo on Zimbabwe: we’ve just welcomed Zimbabwe’s ratification of an EPA which will mean exporters continue to enjoy tariff & quota free access to the UK market. The UK is Zimbabwe’s 19th largest export market # #
The diplomat speaks after the UK’s Minister for Africa had said his country imposed sanctions on a few individuals for violation of human rights.
Sanctions were imposed on the country two decades ago following the controversial fast track land reform programme that left many white farmers landless.
A number of government officials and some senior army officials, as well as some companies they own or control, are on the sanctions list.
ZANU PF says the coercive measures are only meant to champion the regime change agenda in the former British colony.
The party also attributes the country’s deepening economic woes to sanctions but the USA says Zimbabwe’s bad governance is the leading factor in the demise of the economy.
More: Mrs Melanie Robinson