We must remain optimistic, full of hope — President
We publish here the full text of the New Year message delivered by the President and Commander-in-chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, His Excellency President E.D Mnangagwa
Good evening fellow Zimbabweans;
My warmest greetings to all Zimbabweans at home and abroad.
As 2021 draws to a close, I want to take this opportunity to wish you and your families good health, peace and happiness.
Notwithstanding the new normal brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, you have all risen to the occasion, which has seen us weathering the storm and moving our economy forward towards achieving our vision of a prosperous and empowered upper middle income society.
For this, my Government and myself are sincerely grateful.
Our collective action and resolve has seen us scoring various milestones on the socio-economic front, including projected economic growth of 7,4 percent, which is one of the highest on the continent.
This was underpinned by a successful agricultural season characterised by higher production output, increased investments and capacity utilisation in mining, as well as Government backed infrastructure development projects in roads, dam construction and housing, among others.
Under the devolution and decentralisation agenda, various projects have also significantly benefited our people through the construction of schools, clinics as well as water and sanitation infrastructure.
These will vault the development of rural industry systems and increase the gross domestic product (GDP) and quality of life in our rural communities.
Our institutions of higher learning, using the Education 5.0 philosophy, are also playing their part through the construction of innovation hubs and industrial parks.
This has seen the development of many scientific inventions, nurturing of various start-up companies, as well as the registration of numerous patents and the production of new products.
Through unity of purpose, we are developing a Zimbabwe that leaves no one and no place behind, which is in line with the aspirations of the Zimbabwe we all want.
I also want to take this opportunity to thank all our front-line workers, including physicians, nurses and other health personnel, for going the extra mile to ensure that our people remain safe from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Special mention also goes to all the friendly nations who availed vaccines and consumables to complement our efforts.
Together with your positive response to the health measures, we have been able to contain the pandemic and limit the loss of lives.
It is, however, disheartening to note that there are some amongst us who have now begun to lower their guard, especially during this festive season.
I, therefore, urge you to continue abiding by the health measures instituted by my Government from time to time, masking up, sanitising and maintaining social distance.
To those who have not yet been vaccinated, please go out in your numbers and get vaccinated. You can only be safe when we are all safe.
Our education sector personnel and parents also did a splendid job, which made sure that school children continue getting the education they so desperately deserve.
My Government is committed to guaranteeing access to reading materials and online learning platforms so that education is accessible to all.
I also commend Zimbabweans who are living abroad for continuing to send remittances to their loved ones, given that they are confronted with difficulties of their own.
Women and the youth in both the formal and informal sectors were instrumental in the achievement of the phenomenal socio-economic growth projected for the year 2021.
As we move into 2022, my Government will avail additional resources and facilities that enhance the participation of Women and the youth in the development of Zimbabwe.
I commend the security services sector for their patriotism and bravery in tackling crime and ensuring that our communities remain safe. For those isolated incidences of crime, the perpetrators are being accounted for.
In order to flush out bad apples, I exhort communities to increase their cooperation with our law enforcement agencies in the fight against crime.
With regards to the scourge of corruption, I exhort everyone to be upstanding citizens who are full of integrity, for it is only through hard-honest work that we can all prosper.
As you may be aware, by-elections will be conducted in 2022.
These will also serve as a reminder to all that elections are the only route that people can take to elect representatives of their choice.
You should, therefore, vote peacefully, and I urge candidates to conduct themselves in an honourable manner that deepens the maturity of our democracy.
Going forward, we must remain optimistic and full of hope.
As Zimbabweans, we are a nation gifted with the warrior spirit, always fighting for the good.
Let us, therefore, remain united as we safeguard the gains we made in 2021 through working together.
This will enable us to set a solid foundation for future generations. 2022 must be a year in which we focus on efficiencies through moving away from recovery to growth.
On its part, my Government will continue to work tirelessly to create a peaceful and stable political and socio-economic environment that guarantees the realisation of our full potential. With these remarks, I wish you all a prosperous, peaceful, joyful and healthy 2022.
God bless you all. God bless Zimbabwe.
I thank you.