ZimAsset worst policy since 1980, Biti

via ZimAsset worst policy since 1980, Biti 06/05/2014 NewZimbabwe

THE only way Zimbabwe can overcome its current economic and political crises is for all key players to come together and draft a new economic blue-print, former finance minister and opposition leader Tendai Biti has said.

Biti made the remarks Monday at a Sapes Trust Policy Dialogue held under the topic; “Reinforcing Zimbabwe’s Process: A Dialogue to Reinforce Engagement”.

The policy discussion was part of an international conference on Zimbabwe organised by the Sapes Trust and the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and aimed at helping the country’s re-engagement process with the international community.

“ZimAsset (Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation) is a political statement. It is not an economic blueprint and does not offer any solution. Let the people of Zimbabwe write another economic document,” Biti said.

He described the new economic blueprint as the worst since independence adding that if the country was to move both economically and politically it needed “genuine national dialogue”.

“Our disease is that we do not listen to each other. The government thinks it knows it all and we have got a crisis.  We never learn the small words, to listen and to apologise. I believe that we need to resolve the political crisis,” the former finance minister said.

“The present government is unique in that it has wasted energy. The ruling party (Zanu PF) is weak and suffocating in internal fights, is turmoil and chocking under the weight of succession battles.

“The centre (in Zanu PF) is not holding and therefore they seek war in the periphery and unfortunately this civil war is affecting the capacity of the country to move forward.

“The liberation movement has to carry an extra burden in demilitarising itself, in accepting that it has got a national responsibility, which goes beyond protecting the narrow interests of Zanu PF as a political party.”

He added: “We have a dangerous situation of a very weak ruling party.  In 1980, Zanu PF never graduated from a liberation movement into a modern democratic party.”

Biti however, skirted the internecine leadership battles in his own the MDC-T party.

Two weeks ago, the former treasury chief convened a national council meeting that suspended party leader Morgan Tsvangirai plus six other top officials and re-instating then expelled deputy treasurer general Elton Mangoma and three others.

Biti said Zimbabwe was one of the few countries in Africa where there is no difference between the army, Zanu PF and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), in apparent reference to the three institutions’ alleged collaboration “rigging of elections” over the years.

He said the proposed national dialogue would deal with the crises of leadership, President Robert Mugabe’s old age and suspected poor health, legitimacy, the contested elections, governance and moral decadence.

“At the centre of this is the crisis of leadership, lack of a leadership that gives hope that inspires but unfortunately the current leadership it is forcing people to cross crocodile infested Limpopo into South Africa,” he said.

“We need a brand new narrative, respect, inclusivity as Zimbabweans. We need discourse, value systems; the culture of intolerance is so entrenched in the country.

“The world has moved on … you need to compromise. The winner take all mentality is a thing of the past and it belongs to the museums.  We are a long way from understanding each other.

“We can have a new government tomorrow, we already have a new constitution but unless we deal with these fundamental value systems, I submit that we have a crisis.”

Mugabe and Zanu PF should apologise to the people of Zimbabwe, Biti added.

“It is not sufficient to talk about politics without dealing with the economy.  We need a functional economy,” he said.

“The Zanu PF regime must accept failure, must apologise to the people and call for national dialogue inclusive of labour and business.  The current government must engage with everyone including the international community.”

The two-day conference which ended Tuesday is being run under the theme; “Zimbabwe Going Forward: Consolidating the Democratisation Process and Reinforcing Re-engagement with the Global Community.”

Other panellists included; the European Union head of delegation to Zimbabwe, Aldo Dell’Ariccia, Simba Makoni of Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn, Zapu’s Dumiso Dabengwa, Welshman Ncube of the smaller faction of the MDC and Australian Ambassador Matthew Neuhaus.



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    A rebel seeking popularity..nxaaa

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      Itayi 9 years ago

      Does Biti take people for fools or what? The other day he was talking of Zpf having a better election message now he is contradicting himself saying ZimAsset is the worst economic programme since 1980. Is a message without a programme supposed to win elections, I wonder? So which is which Mr. Tendai Biti? Does this not only prove that you became a minister of finance by hook or by crook. I think Tendai Biti is just a disaster waiting to happen.

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    Zimbabwe does not need Zim Asset, it needs to lose the thieves that rule at the top.

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    Mseyamwa 9 years ago

    You should be more specific Biti and state which aspects don’t make sense and why. Anyway it’s very difficult to listen to you when you are busy unbundling your own party. Later!

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    Tjingababili 9 years ago


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    Found this hard to read. All I see is the carcass of a Party that once gave me and a lot of other Zimbabweans hope. I thought there might be jobs,decent accomodation,good roads and water and maybe a new state of the art hospital or two for us…..
    how wrong!!

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    Msizeni silwelani 9 years ago

    When did you realise it Biti? This is zanu pf propaganda disguised as criticism. Zanu pf will give you some points to critique so you gain some measure of respect from unsuspecting voters. In any case zanu knew it was a political gimmick hence they are blaming everyone/thing except themselves for the failure of its implementation. Our economy will not be resuscitated on simple economic principles as long as the political status qua remains.

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    Gomogranny 9 years ago

    ZIMASSET – the prime example of the best that ZANU can do…nonsensical rhetoric. Biti a prime example of the best the opposition politics can do…..not much better. Politicians of ZIMBABWE you are worse than useless….leeches on the people.

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    Hezvo 9 years ago

    (M)biti akurwara uyu. Adii hake kungonyarara. Dont understand him anymore. it was only yesterday when he was praising it. Izvi zvakaoma vanhuwe

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    shortly there will be another brain wave from zanupf /mugabe new revised zimasset TNEW zimaset.

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    No economic policy will work as long as the Z

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    Zanu is in charge.

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    munzwa 9 years ago

    get everyone on board and compile the blueprint you want, but it will have to include the unselective(!)rule of law and respect of property rights and recognition of title.

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    mukanya 9 years ago

    Biti is the dirtiest name to hear at the moment. Its difficult to listen to him right or wrong. SAPES why not call Dr Tapiwa Mashakada a holder of a Phd in economics than call this ego bloated lier(lawyer)

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    gorongoza 9 years ago

    Noone understands Biti, Noone has to understand him, Noone will ever understand him. Its better to leave him to his own madness in darkness.

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    Morris 9 years ago

    The former made some critical points (1) dialogue is needed (2) a new government is needed (3) all these have to be all inclusive. Those who are deeply involved in the issues of MDC-T will always fail to see points from opponents.

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    Petal 9 years ago

    Zimbabwe cannot go forward without the inclusion of the MINORITY GROUPs which include the caucasians, mixed race etc. and others why were they not invited??? IT HAS TO BE DIVERSE???!!

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    Mapingu 9 years ago

    Once again allow me to repeat this again and again: It’s not policies that are fundamentally wrong, in the contrary ‘it is the implementers who are dead-wrong’.

    Truth is: ‘give a perfectly crafted policy to zanu Pf to implement and see if you can ever define the kind of animal that will come out of it’. You will be like to be able to give it a name if u are not as good at lying as zanu pf is. If u are equally good then we all know what u will call the animal; obviously u will call it ‘success’ – even if the same is busy devouring the same people it shld be serving.

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    Parangeta 9 years ago

    “Zimbabwe needs a totally NEW, political Opposition Party!
    ZANU and MDC are has beens, Zimbabwe needs a fresh start.

    Mugarbage, Tsvangarai, Biti et al, need to be put out to pasture!

    We need the diaspora to return, take up the reins and work
    for Zimbabwe, all minorities too, not stay away and criticize”.

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    the land reform programme was done more quickly before the government had gathered enough skills to run the economy that worsened the zimbabwe’s economic situation hence white farmers who were productive and owning companies and large farms to come back such that production can resume in our rotten economy