EDITOR— THE call by SADC for the unconditional and immediate lifting of sanctions imposed on the country is fully appreciated. It is time every patriotic Zimbabwean adds his/her voice to the call to have the illegal economic sanctions removed in their totality.
The claim by Britain and the US that the sanctions are restrictive measures, targeting a few people and not all Zimbabweans is a lie that can no longer hold.
Felix Antoine Tshisekedi Tshilombo, President of the DRC, and chairperson of SADC, could not have put it any better when he said the regional body is deeply concerned over claims that the sanctions are of a ‘targeted nature’ and are aimed at unilaterally punishing a few individuals.
“The reality is that there is a spill-over and contagion effect on the rest of the country, in particular by imposing a blanket negative perception about Zimbabwe across the world, in particular in the sensitive global financial markets. This perception results in the country being unable to attract much-needed foreign direct investment, lines of credit, and other financial services that are essential to the socio-economic development of the country,” said President Tshisekedi.
“This is more concerning given the need for rapid global recovery from at least two years of the socially and economically crippling COVID-19 pandemic which has now been compounded by a general rise in inflation across the world. Zimbabwe, like most developing countries, is particularly vulnerable to these trends and the unilateral sanctions worsen the plight of her economy.”
He said: “Zimbabwe is expected to hold regular national elections in mid-2023. In this context, SADC appeals to those who have imposed sanctions on Zimbabwe to give space to the citizens of the country to exercise their democratic rights and not use sanctions as a covert mechanism to effect regime change.
“SADC is also committed to the spirit of multilateralism, and in this regard, notes that sanctions imposed against a fellow nation in the family of humanity must be made in accordance with international law. In this context SADC welcomes the Report of the Special Rapporteur on the negative impact of unilateral coercive measures on the enjoyment of human rights. Alena Douhan, on her visit to Zimbabwe recommended lifting unilateral sanctions in line with the principles of international law.”
President Tshisekedi noted that SADC fully supports the conclusion of the Special Rapporteur that sanctions, including secondary sanctions, and different forms of over-compliance by foreign banks and companies have had a “…significant impact on the population and the government, exacerbating pre-existing economic and humanitarian challenges.”
And how then can we have our own calling for continued sanctions, doing so for a few pieces of silver.