By Margaret Kamba
In a show of embarrassment after a public disclosure by President and First Secretary Cde E.D Mnangagwa that the international money lending institutions had not given Zimbabwe any money for towards the Corona Virus Disease COVID19 pandemic, the World Bank has given US$7 million.
Cde Mnangagwa in his speech on the 1st of May, told the country that several countries were giving bilateral support apart from these institutions.
“While most countries will continue to benefit from financing packages from multilateral lenders like the IMF, World Bank and AfDB, Zimbabwe will unfortunately not benefit,” Cde Mnangagwa said.
“However, we remain grateful for the bilateral support we continue to receive from countries such as the People’s Republic of China, United Kingdom, India, United States of America, the United Arab Emirates, African Union and the European Union, among others. We equally commend the business community, humanitarian organisations and Non-Governmental Organisations who are assisting the country at this time of great need.”
It is less than a week and the World Bank has responded positively although this funding has seemingly attracted green eyes from the US Administration.
Tweeting on his page the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Senator Jim Risch R-Idaho wrote “The $7M @WorldBank grant for #Zimbabwe reported today should come with strict transparency & accountability measures to ensure Zimbabweans receive services & support during #COVID19, and that these funds aren't lost to ongoing mismanagement by the Zimbabwean govt.”
The idea that World Bank funds given to Zimbabwe must come with strict transparency and accountability is absurd.
Zimbabwe has been doing well with very little help from its allies among them the People’s Republic of China PRC which has done very well regarding the pandemic. The country continue to graciously accept grants and support but does not accept being belittled or bullied.
Zimbabwe has been taking the opportunity to boost the local capacity to manufacture COVID19 materials thanks to the education 5.0 model which the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education.
The World Bank said “We recognize this is a global crisis that impacts every country and we cannot leave anyone behind.” How on earth would the World Bank play the good cop and bad cop game on Zimbabwe? Has Zimbabwe not clearly proven its worth through the initiatives by the Minister of Finance Mthuli Ncube who has worked hard to have the country leave within its means?