Friday, February 13, 2009

Maybe The Worst Is Over For Zimbabwe (Maybe)

In some of my classes we read about how bad Zimbabwe's economy is doing. But apparently the dictatorial president Robert Mugabe is starting to share power with a man who probably beat him in the election (Tsvangirai). The inflation rate last year was 11 million percent. The unemployment rate is 80%. The national debt as a percentage of GDP is 242%.

Here are some exerpts from the CIA:

"His chaotic land redistribution campaign, which began in 2000, caused an exodus of white farmers, crippled the economy, and ushered in widespread shortages of basic commodities. Ignoring international condemnation, MUGABE rigged the 2002 presidential election to ensure his reelection."

"April 2005, the government embarked on Operation Restore Order, ostensibly an urban rationalization program, which resulted in the destruction of the homes or businesses of 700,000 mostly poor supporters of the opposition. President MUGABE in June 2007 instituted price controls on all basic commodities causing panic buying and leaving store shelves empty for months."

An exerpt from one of the other articles is:

"Tsvangirai has been beaten and jailed by Mugabe's security forces. In 2007, police attacked him after he held an opposition meeting the government had banned. Images shown on news broadcasts around the world of his bruised and bloodied face came to symbolize the challenges his movement faced.

Mugabe, who turns 85 on Feb. 21 and has been in power since independence from Britain in 1980, has in the recent past treated the 56-year-old Tsvangirai as a junior partner at best, often not bothering to hide his contempt.

Tsvangirai won the most votes in the first round of presidential election held almost a year ago, and withdrew from a June runoff only because of attacks on his supporters."

If you want to know more, go to the following links:

CIA World Factbook on Zimbabwe

Morgan Tsvangirai Sworn In as Zimbabwe PM; Pledges Focus on Economy

Mugabe swears in rival as Zimbabwe prime minister

Zimbabwe lifts foreign currency restrictions

What it means Dollarisation formula a sham

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