THE Southern African Development Community is marking an anti-sanctions day as the regional bloc ratchets up pressure on the United States to lift the economic sanctions it slapped on Harare.
A march has been organised in Zimbabwe’s capital, Harare, where President Emmerson Mnangagwa is scheduled to deliver a keynote address.
The Secretary-General of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress Ace Magashule is expected to be part of another anti-sanctions march in Beitbridge, a border town south of Zimbabwe.
While Washington argues that the sanctions are targeted, fellow Southern African nations are batting in Harare’s corner.
In a statement, Sadc said the effects of the sanctions are being felt across the board.
“The sanctions have proved to be directly affecting entities beyond the so-called targeted individuals, and have a negative impact on the credibility of Zimbabwe and serious trickle-down effects on the economy and people of Zimbabwe, and by extension, the Sadc Region.”
However, Zimbabwe’s main opposition party, the MDC Alliance, argues that authorities in Harare are using the sanctions narrative to cover up shortcomings.
“Sanctions are not the reason why Zimbabwe is where it is. We need to be honest with each other,” said the party’s Vice-President Tendai Biti.
On the other hand, Sadc said, “The removal of sanctions will benefit Zimbabweans and the Sadc Region as well as enhance cooperation of Sadc with the European Union and the United States of America.”