U.S. Official Tells Mnangagwa to Implement Reforms, Stop Anti-Sanctions Rhetoric




United States Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairperson, Jim Risch

A high ranking member of the United States Senate Foreign Relations Committee says Zimbabwe should implement tangible reforms and stop conducting anti-sanctions campaigns that won’t bring any social, political and economic transformation in the southern African nation.

In a tweet, Senator Jim Risch of Idaho said, “Another year, another hollow anti-sanctions campaign from the gov’t of #Zimbabwe full of rhetoric instead of change. The U.S. is consistent & clear about the path to better relations. Stop the corruption. Stop the #humanrights abuses. Pursue real political & economic reform.”

In Anti-Sanctions Day message, President Emmerson Mnangagwa said, “Zimbabwe’s considered and firm position is that we are a friend to all and an enemy to none.”

Mnangagwa promised to engage the European Union and countries that imposed targeted sanctions on Zanu PF officials, including United States and Britain in an effort to create fresh relations with them.

Britain recently imposed targeted sanctions on businessman, Kudakwashe Tagwirei, “for profiting from misappropriation of property when his company, Sakunda Holdings, redeemed Government of Zimbabwe Treasury Bills at up to ten times their official value. His actions accelerated the deflation of Zimbabwe’s currency, increasing the price of essentials, such as food, for Zimbabwean citizens.”

Tagwirei is a close ally of President Mnangagwa.

In a report published recently titled “Shadows and Shell Games: Uncovering an Offshore Business Empire in Zimbabwe”, The Sentry revealed key details of Tagwirei’s business dealings, which have been linked to alleged corrupt activities.

The Sentry’s investigation revealed that Tagwirei, who is a presidential advisor, now presides over a sprawling network of more than 40 companies spanning the oil, mining, banking, logistics, transportation, and import/export sectors. The report details how Tagwirei has effectively concealed his control over this empire through an elaborate foreign network, hiding his wealth and ownership through offshore financial structures.

Tagwirei has not yet reacted to the report.

President Joseph Biden’s administration in April this year urged Zimbabwe to implement constitutional reforms and embrace national dialogue for the benefit of citizens, who are striving for peace and development.

In his message to mark Zimbabwe’s independence in April this year, United States Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, said, “As the people of Zimbabwe celebrate their Independence Day, we recognize their continued struggle to secure the rights and freedoms enshrined in their constitution. We encourage the Government of Zimbabwe to support reforms to advance these constitutional rights and embrace an inclusive national dialogue that upholds the universal values Zimbabweans have fought so hard to gain. “To that end, we will join with the Zimbabwean people to strengthen democratic institutions, promote equitable economic growth, boost public health, and improve food security.”

He said the United States supports all Zimbabweans who aspire to a peaceful, democratic, and prosperous future.

United Nations special envoy to Zimbabwe, Elena Douhan, in a statement on Wednesday also urged the Zimbabwean government to engage countries and entities that imposed targeted sanctions on Zanu PF officials. – VOA