Diplomats speak on economic independence

By Josephine Mugiyo, Diplomatic Correspondent

WITH barely a week left before the country commemorates Independence Day, fellow African countries have underscored the need for Zimbabwe and the continent to vigorously pursue economic independence.

Zimbabwe is no exception to African countries who fought for freedom from colonial rule to pursue economic emancipation and inclusive development.

While Zimbabwe has navigated various challenges in its quest to grow the economy, the Second Republic has embarked on an intensive drive to woo investors through the engagement and reengagement drive.

Government’s sustained drive to attract investment into the country has drawn the attention of fellow African countries, with the Tanzanian Ambassador to Zimbabwe, His Excellency, Professor Emmanuel Mbennah calling for more economic cooperation with Zimbabwe.

“We have a rich history, Tanzania and Zimbabwe. It dates back to pre-independence. We would like to increase the areas of cooperation in various areas, which include agriculture and mining. The independence in Zimbabwe is to be treasured. We need to ensure economic independence,” he said.

Ambassador Mbennah emphasised the need for unity of purpose, cognisant of the fact that Zimbabweans have the ability to solve their own challenges.

“It is unfortunate when we have people in a country who do not stand with their country. Solutions come from within,” lamented Ambassador Mbennah.

When Zimbabwe secured independence in 1980, Ghana was among the first countries to establish diplomatic ties with Zimbabwe and it is no surprise that the Ghanaian ambassador to Zimbabwe, His Excellency Alexander Ntrakwa confirmed that the West African country stands firm in calling for the removal of illegal sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe for it to attain economic freedom.

“Ghana stands shoulder to shoulder with Zimbabwe in its efforts to fight sanctions. As Africa, let’s work together and pool our resources together,” said Ambassador Ntrakwa.

What is clear is that the Second Republic has hit the right chords in international relations, hence Zimbabweans will head to Bulawayo for this year’s Independence Day commemorations fully aware that the country is on track to achieve economic emancipation which will leave no one and no place behind.