Govt reaches out to Strive Masiyiwa

Govt reaches out to Strive Masiyiwa

Source: Govt reaches out to Strive Masiyiwa | Daily News

HARARE – The times they are a changing.

The Zimbabwe government has finally reached out to its richest and most generous citizen, Strive Masiyiwa, who lives in London, in exile, and is named as a billionaire by Forbes magazine but was seen by former president Robert Mugabe as an enemy.

Masiyiwa previously financed the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), started an opposition newspaper, created a massive mobile phone network, Econet, and lately provides most of Zimbabwe’s cash transactions and a television network company which is challenging MultiChoice.

Masiyiwa’s massive business conglomerate was ignored by Mugabe’s administration since it began more then 30 years ago. Masiyiwa was seen almost as an enemy of the State. But times they really are a changing: Vice President Constantino Chiwenga, a retired general, visited the Econet display stand at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair last week.

Masiyiwa responded warmly, tenderly, on his Facebook site “You cannot imagine how appreciative we were of the gesture as even though we are the largest employer of our fellow citizens, it is the first time we have been publicly accepted by our own government.”

Few know the massive contribution Masiyiwa has made to the disadvantaged in Zimbabwe and he has educated thousands of Zimbabweans since he fought battles in court to establish his Econet mobile network 30 years ago.

Among the political leaders at that time, only opposition leader the late Joshua Nkomo backed him.

Zanu PF supporters believed they should not subscribe to Econet and supported the State’s mobile net work, TelOne. But Econet is by far the most sophisticated, if not the more expensive operator.

Via Econet, Masiyiwa and his associates launched Kwese, a network like MultiChoice, which is attracting many customers from the South African provider.

Econet officials handed Chiwenga a Kwese decoder when he visited the company site at the fair in Bulawayo.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration, which has now cancelled indigenisation legislation except for platinun and diamonds and that would be open to negotiation, says Zimbabwe is “open for business.”

But the country faces massive cash shortages inside the country and has a chronic shortage of foreign currency for importation of goods.


  • comment-avatar
    Sipendu 3 years ago

    Come home Strive and reduce the rip off prices at your company.

  • comment-avatar
    Gongorenda 3 years ago

    This is great news. For decades Mugabe regime thought they could build this country without brainy business gurus like Strive and others like him. Strive and all businesses in Zimbabwe have been at the mercy of a voracious thieving political oligarch that pillaged private sector accounts of cash in 1997 to pay war vets, followed by compulsory liquidations of FCAs, then came Gono’s printing press, Makuvise’s robbing of bank accounts through ‘charges to finance Gushung ho Dairy/Transport/Holdings, and then overnight introduction of multicurrency before placing the icing on the cake with bond note theft of citizens’ forex in nostros.

    They trusted their lazy parastatal cohorts who milked the state dry through party, state sponsored and subtle corruption till they started squizzing Econet to pay more for it’s license than others, with threats to cancel the license.

    Now that it all didn’t work, one hopes that the overtures are genuine. You can’t hope to appease Dangote with his US sponsored Capital and hope that they don’t read the risks bedeviling those already invested in the belly of the beast.