BRITAIN has admitted that Western sanctions on Zimbabwe have adversely affected the youth and the country should be allowed to access credit lines to rebuild its economy, Zanu-PF Politburo member Cde Lewis Matutu said yesterday.
Cde Matutu who is the party’s Youth League deputy secretary said officials from the British Embassy in Zimbabwe sought a meeting with him last week where they had frank discussions about the prevailing economic situation and how it affected youths.
He revealed this yesterday while addressing students at the Lupane State University (LSU) main campus in Lupane stating that it is time for the country to focus on the future.
“Last week I had an opportunity to sit down with officials from the British Embassy. They looked for me I didn’t look for them. But what they were saying is that ‘we want to explain to you the reason why we would like to think that Zimbabwe should be allowed to move forward and get financial support.’
“The second thing that they said is that ‘we think that we are not fair to the young people of Zimbabwe who were not there when a lot of things were happening.’
“That’s what they said to me and I agree with them. That’s why I’m saying let’s not focus on what happened before but let’s look at how best we can correct our situation for our own good,” he said.
Cde Matutu said the engagement with the British Embassy is testimony that President Mnangagwa’s re-engagement policy was starting to bear fruits.
He said while those who imposed sanctions on the country claim that the illegal embargo was targeted on individuals their full effects are being felt by ordinary Zimbabweans.
He said sanctions have to be removed because without credit lines and financial support it would be difficult to resuscitate Zimbabwe’s economy.
“If you don’t have access to financial aid then you have challenges. You cannot thrive as an economy when we are not able to access financial aid. Financial aid that is accessed by our country is only through non-governmental organisations,” he said.
Cde Matutu said a mindset shift was necessary if the country is to prosper in all facets of life.
He said Zimbabweans can learn from China and America who put their countries first in everything they do.
Cde Matutu said while sanctions have caused economic challenges, corruption should be eradicated as it is also worsening the situation.
He said it is everyone’s responsibility to take a stand against corruption.
“Who is going to stop that behaviour? It’s not those who are stealing because they are benefiting from it. It is us, when you look at things you would expect other people to stand up and solve them but I will tell you that no one is comfortable with bad things. It is the rate that we denounce them that will make them disappear,” said Cde Matutu.
During the discussion students spoke about their challenges such as shortage of accommodation, unbalanced diet and water problems among others.
They said the challenges were infringing on their rights to quality education.
Written by Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Reporter