Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa belives the decision to ban the use of foreign currency in the country was the only solution to fix the country’s economy.
“It has always been clear that for our economy to truly take off, we need our own currency,” said Mnangagwa in a statement.
After announcing that the RTGS dollar would be the only legal currency used in the country, investors and local business people are worried that the new currency change might severely affect their businesses.
“While the multi-currency regime helped stabilise the economy, it did not give us control of the monetary policy and left us at the mercy of U.S dollar pricing which has been a root cause of inflation,” he added.
If the government did not reverse the new policy, unions were threatening to strike as they did not believe that the government would be able to print their own money and be constant.
President of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) Peter Mutasa said: “If the government does not reverse this ruinous policy immediately and announce U.S dollar salary payments, we will immediately mobilise workers for mass action.”
While other grocery and fast food stores were no longer accepting foreign currency from customers, most informal traders selling clothes, car parts and electronics were still taking foreign currency from customers.
One clothes seller, Thomas said: “If I stop taking U.S dollars, how am I going to replace my stock? I have not seen anyone who got U.S dollars from the bank in a long time.”
Koketso Ramorei is a journalist and news editor of SADC News with years of experience in a number of genres including sports, politics and community reporting. He has worked for a numerous publications including The Citizen Newspaper and is a former editor of a Johannesburg-based off-campus publication called The Waldorfian Times.