By Fay Chung, Former Minister of Education (1988-1993)
A NEW Zimbabwe is struggling to be born. Up till now, Zimbabwe has still been living with the visions of the 1950s and 1960s, tempered by the visions of the liberation struggle of the mid-1960s and 1970s.
The introduction of Economic Structural Adjustment Programme (Esap) ideology in the 1990s and its re-introduction in 2018, have seen a marked deterioration of the economy, of national values as well as of political stability.
The Zanu PF political hegemony began to be seriously threatened by Esap and, although it revived resoundingly after the 2013 elections, the weaknesses and failures of the economy continue to bedevil the situation.
The most critical failure over the past 20 years has been the economic failure, caused by a combination of Esap and the US-imposed Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Revival Act (Zidera) on the one hand, and the populist and technically unsound responses of the government and of the opposition on the other hand.
The rising and destructive corruption has exacerbated both the political and economic situations. It has also seriously affected social welfare.
It can be said that Zimbabwe is in a dire state. It is essential for Zimbabwe to examine its political values and systems to define its strengths, how Zimbabwe has been weakened, and how it can recover and rehabilitate itself. Reactions to date have been highly emotional, but lacking technical perspectives and inputs.
Zimbabwe began Independence in 1980 with people expecting to get everything that Europeans had had. Europeans enjoyed a lot of privileges free of charge, and naturally many believed that Africans would be able to have the same.