People must “not steal” while those who externalised money must take advantage of the ultimatum to bring the loot back into the country before the window closes, first lady, Auxillia Mnangagwa, has said.
The First Lady said this to residents of Mutasa on Wednesday.
Her comments come after President Emmerson Mnangagwa gave individuals and institutions that externalised money three months to bring back their loot without question or face prosecution thereafter.
The ultimatum expires in February and Auxillia warned this window of opportunity should be utilised.
“The President has given them a chance and they should take heed. People must not steal. It affects the weak in society so bring back the money. Women must have access to cash and that will alleviate their plight,” the First Lady said.
She said the externalisation of money had affected women in particular adding that women bear the brunt of corrupt practices by politically connected people.
“Women bear the brunt of our bad economic situation. The failure to access money in banks also affects mostly women and the youths and we have been struggling across the country,” she said.
“Women have to cater for children and when there are financial problems in the home and society in general we suffer most.”
Zimbabwe has been reeling under a debilitating economic crisis that has manifested in the form of crippling cash shortages forcing Zimbabweans into unending queues.
Since Mnangagwa took over, he has vowed to crack down on corruption and laziness. And a number of former cabinet ministers have been arrested on allegations of looting and corruption.
However Mnangagwa has been fingered in shady diamond deals including the looting of the precious gems in the Democratic Republic of Congo by individuals linked to the military.
Former President Robert Mugabe also claimed about $15 billion in diamond revenues from the Marange diamond fields was spirited out of the country in what critics said was a naked accusation of Mnangagwa and his acolytes in the then Team Lacoste faction during the Zanu PF internal power struggle which ended with the military intervention that forced the 93 year old out of power in November last year.
– New Zimbabwe