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Zimbabwe President Warns ‘End Is Coming’ for Economic Detractors

Bloomberg logo Bloomberg 6/24/2020 Ray Ndlovu
a man standing in front of a window: Emmerson Mnangagwa © Bloomberg Emmerson Mnangagwa

(Bloomberg) -- Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa warned his government will tackle “malpractices” that have undermined his government’s efforts to end an economic crisis.

The comments echo remarks Mnangagwa made two weeks ago, when he blamed private business for the country’s economic woes.

“We shall not allow a situation where our people live in chronic insecurity, lack and deprivation,” Mnangagwa said Wednesday in a televised speech in the capital, Harare. “It has become apparent that in our midst there are wolves in sheep’s clothing. The end is coming.”

The 77-year-old leader has ruled Zimbabwe since late 2017, after a coup ended former President Robert Mugabe’s rule. He inherited a nation beset by U.S. and European sanctions on its leaders and state companies, $9 billion of debt and an economy decimated by the state’s seizure of commercial farms that accounted for much of its exports.

Mnangagwa’s attempts to stabilize the economy have borne little fruit -- consumer inflation is running at 786%, the country’s recently revived currency has collapsed and the World Bank estimates the economy will shrink as much as 10% this year.

George Charamba, the president’s spokesman, didn’t answer calls to his mobile phone seeking comment.

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