Zimbabwe’s condition continues to fall as the country grips the worst crisis since its independence from Britian in 1980. In an effort to curb the continued despair of the country, President Robert Mugabe has pledged to print more money. This strategy is not likely to help the economic condition given that printing money is a “recipe for inflation”. Economists estimate the inflation rate will likely be twice as high as the current rate of 4,500 percent.
Thousands left their jobs when the government ordered companies to operate at a loss by reducing the price of goods and services by half. Unemployment is presently at 80 percent. Along with food and oil shortages, hospitals are losing kidney patients due to the lack dialysis machines. Furthermore, pharmacies are advising AIDS patients to stock up on their drugs. Roughly 20 percent of Zimbabweans have AIDS and raw materials will soon run out. Another serious problem lies in the breakdowns of water pumps.
An estimated 4,000 Zimbabweans have headed south to South Africa. The Central Methodist Church in downtown Johannesburg has become a virtual refugee camp for 800-900 fleeing Zimbabweans. South African President Thabo Mbeki warns that next years election in Zimbabwe must be free and fair. Political unrest continues to rise and President Mugabe’s opposition, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), gets stronger as the country falls. President Mbeki, who continues to play mediator between President Mugabe and the MDC, adds that he is confident an agreement would be met.
In the meantime, Arthur Mutambara, the leader of the MDC has decided to intensify the campaign against President Mugabe with the joint coalition of political and social organizations. Mutambara said that the country cannot rely on foreigners to emancipate and liberate it, it must have an alternate plan.
For more information please see:
Yahoo – Mbeki Says Zimbabwe’s Vote Must Be ‘Free and Fair’ – 29 July 2007
Yahoo – South African Church Shelters Desperate Zimbabweans – 29 July, 2007
Yahoo – Mugabe Says He Will Print More Money – 28 July 2007
Yahoo – We Cannot Rely on South African Leader Alone: Zimbabwe Opposition – 28 July 2007