For too long, our country has been held back by the old ways of doing things in our society, our politics, our economy and our culture.
New ideas have been resisted, new developments rejected. The results of this are the economic challenges we see and experience every day.
Recently I asked what I see as my main mission as your President. What I want my legacy to be.
My answer was simple — reform.
Reforming our institutions, reforming our legislation, reforming our mindset.
We must turn our back on the old way of doing things, we must embrace the new.
For the new Zimbabwe to succeed, we must embrace reform in everything we do. And that is exactly what we are doing.
Minister of Finance (Mthuli) Ncube has gone about reforming the very basis of our economy, returning us to a budget surplus and laying the foundations for long-term growth and prosperity.
Yes, today is tough, but tomorrow is looking brighter and brighter.
We are opening Zimbabwe up to investment, building a new and mutually beneficial relationship with nations and businesses of the world.
And we are repealing Posa and Aippa, legislation that have been heavily criticised, symbols of the old Zimbabwe.
The process of reform is not an easy one. It involves sacrifices from us all and brings about short-term upheaval that causes pain and suffering.
There will also always be those who are wedded to the old ways, and who do not want to see change. Those who are threatened by the new, open Zimbabwe we are building.
But we cannot allow those voices to stifle our progress. We cannot allow those who benefited from how things were to stop Zimbabwe from changing. There is only one path. Reform. Reform. Reform.
In my youth, as a solider, I had a clear mission — to establish an independent Zimbabwe.
I fought for this mission with all my heart, whatever the consequences.
Now as your President, I have a new mission, no less important — to reform Zimbabwe so that we build a country in which all have the opportunity to prosper.
I will fight for this goal with all my heart and all my soul, whatever it takes. The process is tough, but I promise you it is worth it.
We will reform Zimbabwe together. We will fulfill our potential. We will build our new Zimbabwe for all.
— President Emmerson Mnangagwa
President Mnangagwa made this speech on Friday at his maiden live radio programme which was broadcast by Harare-based Capitalk 100.4FM. The Head of State and Government, who has proved on many occasions that he is a listening President, took time to answer questions from both the radio station’s co-hosts and listeners.