[Marxism] : Zimbabwe socialists: `Mobilise against the Mugabe regime!' ; ZANU-PF promises free-market onslaught

noah tucker csoc21 at btinternet.com
Mon Jul 21 17:53:01 MDT 2008

glparramatta <glparramatta at greenleft.org.au> wrote: 

"Reflecting its massive shift to the right, as well as the domination of capitalists, the ZANU-PF manifesto for the presidential runoff election openly and unashamedly called for the massive escalation of neoliberal free-market polices after the election. This policy is no different from the free-market neoliberal policies promised by the MDC -- thus making a government of national unity between these two parties of the bosses most likely.
Full articles at http://links.org.au/node/531"

I followed the link to the Links articles, and found that the claim that "This [Zanu-PF] policy is no different from the free-market neoliberal policies promised by the MDC" was unsupported by the evidence produced. Here are the excerpts from the Zanu-PF document as reproduced by Links from Socialist Worker (I have deleted the 'translations' inserted after each paragraph in the Links article, which were clearly not part of the Zanu-PF document and appear to have been added by a commentator for Socialist Worker):

``Reason 77 Most recently, as a direct response to representation from the business community and in the interest of harnessing scarce foreign currency, the ZANU-PF Government has liberalised the country's trade, financial services and foreign exchange market systems so as to allow free enterprise for growth and development in the interest of all Zimbabweans...

``Reason 80 Against the backdrop of the recent ZANU-PF Government-initiative to improve the availability of foreign currency led by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, ZANU-PF will promote the urgent formulation and implementation of fiscal and other economic measures to complement the liberalisation of the foreign exchange market. 

``Reason 81 In line with the ongoing liberalisation of the foreign exchange market, the ZANU-PF Government will remove price controls and distortions to allow the pricing of goods and services to reflect the full production and distribution costs and a reasonable return that is consistent with movements on the foreign and other source markets. 

``Reason 83 ZANU-PF will implement a cost-reflective tariff through the automatic trigger mechanism which has already been approved by the ruling party's government as a response to the nationwide concerns on the unreliable and obviously poor service delivery by public utilities... as well as telecommunication providers and local authorities. 

``Reason 89 ZANU-PF will through its government promote investment in the country by Zimbabweans in the diaspora, on the back of the liberalisation of the foreign exchange market, by allowing remittance of 100% profit or dividends to non-resident Zimbabweans with investments in the country.

Now, these paragraphs do indicate existing and further concessions to market liberalism on the matters of foreign exchange, prices, and profit remittances to Zimbabwe nationals living abroad. However, in comparison to the MDC manifesto, which includes, eg, the full privatisation & liberalisation of manufacturing, mining, electricity etc, and the unfettered repatriation of dividends to all foreign investors, the Zanu-PF proposals are very modest.

 On the evidence produced, the claim that the Zanu-PF policy on the neo-liberal free market is identical to that of the MDC is false.

Louis Proyect remarked that Robert Mugabe is not the reincarnation of Mao Zedong. With this I agree- except that it should be pointed out that Mao Zedong also had his faults. But in any case, that does not mean that it should be permissible to distort the facts in order to advance the argument against the Zimbabwe government.

Further. Distorting the facts in this way helps to obscure the motives of Britain, the USA & the rest of the G7 in their anti-Zimbabwe campaign. 


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