Mukudzei Chingwere Herald Reporter
The agreement signed between the Government and white former commercial farmers for compensation for improvements has helped Zimbabwe’s re-engagement efforts with the national investment promotion drive anchored on mending and improving relations with other countries.
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Dr Sibusiso Moyo yesterday said the root cause of the conflict between Zimbabwe and Western countries was the land question.
Speaking after yesterday’s Cabinet meeting in Harare, he said: “Indeed, it has helped us re-engage, which is part of the thrust being pushed by President Mnangagwa. The original cause of sanctions which were imposed on this country was primarily the land question. The land question was the original cause of the conflict whose museum is about to be built.
“That conflict is the liberation struggle, and you do not solve a conflict unless you solve the cause of the conflict. Therefore, this is one of the measures which the Government found prudent,” said Dr Moyo.
“I think it is common cause that the Global Compensation Agreement is a result of a conflictual position which emanates from the desire to be compliant to the Constitution of Zimbabwe which is constitutionalism.”
The agreement which the Government and the former farmers came up with was a clear testimony that the two could actually reach a deal.
Minister Moyo said compensation was settling the last nail on the issue of the land reform, which had led to countries like the United States taking note of the strides travelled by Zimbabwe.
“Now, how does it affect re-engagement? It is now easier. In fact, it has now been recognised by those countries — the US. (United States Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs) Tiboy Nagy himself actually tweeted over that particular issue. Even Europe has also done that. We have heard the British also saying that.
“The issue is we are now talking of this matter being past us. It has been resolved by Zimbabweans and white former farmers,” said Minister Moyo.
In a virtual conversation with Minister Moyo recently, Ambassador Nagy said Harare made a number of political and economic reforms to improve the operating environment, conceding that the US was willing to work with Zimbabwe.
He bemoaned uninformed criticism of Zimbabwe’s successful land reforms and praised the efforts now being made to compensate former farmers for improvements.
Speaking at the same post-Cabinet media briefing, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said the engagements would continue until sanctions were lifted.
“The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade reported that he had held and delivered lectures, held diplomatic briefings and conducted interviews, which had significantly boosted the country’s image internationally.
“The re-engagement programme had continued slowly due to travel constraints occasioned by the Covid-19 outbreak. Engagements with the US and EU will continue until sanctions are lifted. On a positive note, consumer services continue to be enhanced with use of virtual platforms,” she said.
Minister Mutsvangwa said the Cabinet received update reports on progress made in the implementation of the Sixth 100-Day Cycle Projects from ministries.
Health and Child Care Minister, Vice President Constantino Chiwenga, outlined the projects being undertaken by his ministry as part of Zimbabwe’s response to Covid-19.
Minister Mutsvangwa said the Mbuya Nehanda memorial statue was now 70 percent complete and the decentralisation of passport services to Chitungwiza District was 28 percent complete.
On the economy she said: “The country’s finances and revenues continued to improve due to enhanced revenue collection and administration. Government managed to pay salaries on due dates and was able to increase salaries in June and September.”