via Grace defends Chinese products 05/10/2014
PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe’s wife, Grace, on Saturday defended Chinese-made products which are often the butt of jokes in Zimbabwe.
Grace made the remarks while addressing participants at the official opening of the Danhiko Paralympic Games in Harare on Saturday.
“People have this belief that Chinese products are sub-standard, but the truth is that it is our merchants who go to China and buy goods that are of a low grade,” she said.
Zimbabwe has since 2000 forged closer ties with China as part of its Look-East policy after the West imposed targeted sanctions on Mugabe and his lieutenants for stealing elections and failure to uphold democracy.
Mugabe was recently in China where he is said to have sealed multi-billion dollar deals that the government says will breathe life into the country’s comatose economy.
While the government has been courting the Chinese to invest in the country, the perception of Zimbabweans about Chinese investors remains largely negative.
Cheap- quality Chinese products remain the butt of jokes in Zimbabwe.
On Saturday, Grace Mugabe could not resist a dig at the Chinese telling a crude joke about Chinese products.
“There was this Chinese man who came into the country and married a Zimbabwean woman but after six months their child of mixed race died.
“An aunt to the mother of the child came to the funeral and wailed for hours that she knew the truth.
“Asked on what it is she new, the aunt said she knew Chinese things do not last,” Grace said to rolling laughter.
Chinese businessmen have been accused of flouting Zimbabwe’s labour laws and dumping cheap wares into the country.
Critics say the Chinese have turned Zimbabwe into “one big flea market” following the collapse of industry.