President Mnangagwa last night said he did not rig the August harmonised elections, but won on merit after working hard in the last five years. He was speaking during a congratulatory business dinner organised by business leaders after his victory during the August harmonised general elections.
The President said like business leaders, the Government is in place on merit. “I am addressing people who are aware they are there by merit, not by election. You congratulate me — we were elected — but you never interrogate whether we rigged. I can assure you whoever has that inkling, we did not rig. We are where we are by merit, total merit, like yourselves,” said the President.
Turning to his plans going forward, President Mnangagwa said the Second Republic will continue to roll out pro-business policies to ensure a conducive environment for increased production while also further reducing the cost of doing business. The Head of State and Government said his administration would continue to bring sector-specific initiatives to ensure the current rise in production is sustained.
Already, policies spearheaded by the Second Republic have improved the country’s business environment, with locally manufactured goods now occupying over 85 percent of the space in supermarkets, while foreign companies continue to be attracted to Zimbabwe.
Consequently, export earnings between January and August this year grew by 6,1 percent to US$4,48 billion compared to US$4,42 billion realised during the same period last year. President Mnangagwa said his administration was well on course to meet Zimbabweans’ aspirations of improved living conditions and development, which leaves no one and no place behind.
“My administration will continue to provide sector-specific incentives to improve production levels and capacity as well as the overall competitiveness of our local industries,” he said. “This continues to be reflected through the Second Republic’s pro-business policies and the continuous improved ease of doing business environment.
“I am pleased to note the positive trajectory being recorded across all sectors of the economy, with growth in production and productivity, capacity utilisation as well as exports.” President Mnangagwa commended Zimbabweans for embracing the “Nyika inovakwa nevene vayo/Ilizwe lakhiwa ngabanikazi balo” mantra, given the appetite by many locals to participate in national development.
On that note, the President urged businesses that have not regularised their operations to do so for them to contribute to national development. He said he has already charged relevant departments with ensuring that the regularisation process is seamless.
Efforts to streamline small and medium enterprises into the mainstream economy are underway, added President Mnangagwa.
“In addition, support for many more micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to transition into the mainstream economy is being increased.
“All our small businesses must be registered and the relevant Government departments have been directed to provide comprehensive facilitation to ease the cost and simplify processes associated with registration. The increased participation of locals in other sectors such as agriculture, mining and tourism is applauded,” said the President. Programmes are also underway to revamp other key economic enablers such as power supply, he said.
The Second Republic, added President Mnangagwa, will continue championing private sector-led growth to cement Zimbabwe’s sustained prosperity. He also said the modernisation of key infrastructure such as the Beitbridge Border Post had removed bottlenecks and improved the ease of doing business in the country. The upgrading of requisite infrastructure remains a priority for the Second Republic, said the President, while applauding the private sector for partnering Government in infrastructure projects.