By Sydney Kawadza
President Mnangagwa yesterday assured Zimbabweans that Government was revamping the economy to ensure the country becomes the Jewel of Africa through sheer industry.
Addressing a bumper crowd at Chinhoyi University of Technology (CUT) Sports Grounds yesterday, President Mnangagwa said it was Government’s goal to restore the country’s lost economic glory.
Government, he said, was happy the world had been receptive to the new dispensation’s policies of re-engagement and improving the ease of doing business.
Since assuming office in November last year, the new administration has locked in over US$16 billion in investment commitments in addition to recovering over US$850million out of the US$1,4 billion that was illegally externalised by corporates and individuals over the years.
“The 20 years that we lost while other nations were developing, we would want to leapfrog and jump to catch up with other nations in the region and other African countries and beyond.
President Mnangagwa said the engagement policy meant all nations and international organisations would enjoy mutual friendship with Zimbabwe.
“We must, however, be aware that these relationships would be mutual.”
President Mnangagwa said the re-engagement policy would see Zimbabwe work to restore relationships with its erstwhile friends across the world.
“Those who had severed relationships with us are being asked to restore these, but those who are not interested will not be forced to review these relations,” he said.
He said Zimbabwe had opened its doors to the outside world.
“Zimbabwe is open for business, for you friends to come, all of you to come. Those who do not want, we cannot force friendship upon those who do not want.
“But we are happy that across the board, across the entire world, Zimbabwe is being received, Zimbabwe is being respected, Zimbabwe is being accepted with the policies that we have; that let us relate, let us re-engage, let us be a member of the international community.”
“We are at the dawn of a new Zimbabwe. A new era Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe yevana vakabatana. Zimbabwe yatinoda.
“The Zimbabwe we want is the Zimbabwe we must build. Zimbabwe yevanowirirana, Zimbabwe yevanowirirana. Zimbabwe yevanodanana. Zimbabwe ine runyararo.”
He said Zimbabweans should agree on a new trajectory of moving ahead in unity to create a new Zimbabwe.
“We want a Zimbabwe where everyone will live in peace. Everyone will be happy at home and at work. Where everyone feels is important.
“This is a new dawn. Tinemaziso asi hationesesi. Tinonzwa hatinzwisisi. Wakaropafadzwa iwewe kuona zuva ranhasi tichiti Zimbabwe yavaitsva.
“Zimbabwe ichatanga rwendo rutsva rwokuvaka nyika yatinoda yatinowirirana isina kuzvidzana.”
President Mnangagwa said his Government priorities economics ahead of politics.
“Yes (there is) politics asi taakuti isu economics, economics, the creation of wealth. God has endowed us with abundant resources beneath the earth.
He said Government would make sure that it enhances agricultural production by modernising the sector.
“We must mechanise our agriculture. Tinoda kuti tigadzirise avo vanenge varikuita mabasa ekurima vatsigirwe saka muchiona tiine ma programmes akaita seCommand Agriculture and Presidential Inputs Support Scheme.”
President Mnangagwa said the business community had acknowledged that there could be no development without agriculture, mining and infrastructure development.
“For the months that we have been in the new dispensation, you can see that the situation has changed. The roads are being maintained and constructed.
“Even in Harare where there were potholes, everywhere you go you will see workers maintaining the roads while in the rural areas the DDF and council are working on the roads and building bridges,” he said.
President Mnangagwa has spearheaded projects like the Kariba South Expansion which has boosted electricity generation.
He has also engaged the Chinese government which is funding various projects including the Hwange Thermal Power Station expansion project, Robert Mugabe International Airport Expansion Project, Kunzvi Dam construction, among others.