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Mnangagwa appoints new Central Bank Governor amid concerns over high inflation, crumbling Zimbabwe dollar

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President Emmerson Mnangagwa has appointed top-ranked banker, John Mushayavanhu, as the new governor of the central bank, almost a month before the end of John Mangudya’s term of office.

Announcing the appointment in a government gazette on Thursday, Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube said Mnangagwa appointed the new governor in terms of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Act (Chapter 22:15) for a period of five years ending in March, 2029.

Mnangagwa initially announced Mushayavanhu’s appointment in December but could not immediately take over the post due to Mangudya’s delayed departure.

Mushayavanhu, with over 30 years of experience in the banking sector, declined to comment on his appointment and Mangudya was unreachable as he was not responding to calls on his mobile phone.

John Mushayavanhu

The new governor is expected to announce his policy measures to contain rising inflation and depreciating Zimbabwe dollar. A United States dollar was on Thursday fetching up to ZWL$42,000 on the black market and just over half of that amount in the official money market.

High inflation has resulted in serious macro-economic instability in Zimbabwe with spiraling prices of basic commodities and depressed industrial capacity production, negatively affecting millions of people.

Writing on X, formerly Twitter, Deputy Finance Minister Kuda Mnangagwa said a surge in the exchange rate was linked to speculation on the RBZ’s Monetary Policy Statement, expected to be announced within the next few days.

Mnangagwa said, “We have been receiving enquiries about the surge in the exchange rate, which right now can be attributed to the anxiety and anticipation of the upcoming Monetary Statement that is around the corner. If I were to irresponsibly give unsolicited advice, I would urge Zimbabweans with their hard-earned ZWL not to hedge against it. Government is committed to ensuring that there will be no loss of value through the introduction of currency stabilization measures.”

Economic commentator Rejoice Ngwenya of the Common Market for Liberal Solutions said Mushayavanhu is expected to come up with prudent monetary policies that would curb high inflation and a further depreciation of the value of the Zimbabwean dollar.

“He should not follow quasi-fiscal policies being touted by the ruling party because that spells disaster for the country. He is a professional banker who is expected to use his wide experience in stabilizing the inflation rate and crumbling local dollar. Otherwise, he may end up looking like a driver of a vehicle without fuel.”

Business executives are also livid over Mushayavanhu’s appointment with some noting that Zimbabwe needs to fix the country’s economic fundamentals first before thinking of curbing galloping inflation and depreciating local dollar.

“All we need,” said top businessman and Nyamandlovu farmer Japhet Mpofu, “is high production levels supported by availability of electricity.”

Mpofu, a former hotelier, said most businesses need state support in terms of getting adequate electricity and other necessary infrastructure.

“At the moment some of us have ended up installing solar energy in an effort to tackle power issues and in some cases it’s not possible to depend on electricity as power switched off anytime. This is very bad for businesses. We have come up with other ways of surviving under these difficult times. The basic thing we need to do as a country is to produce goods for big national and international markets and this can only be done through government support in providing energy and having good monetary policies.”

Zimbabwe is one of the largest producers of gold, diamonds, platinum and other minerals.

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Mnangagwa commissions Kamativi Spodumene Mine

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Below are some images from Hwange, Kamativi Spodumene mine where President Emmerson Mnangagwa Friday commissioned the company’s 2.3 MT spodumene mining and processing project phase one.

Pictures by the Presidential Communications

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Mozambican national jailed 16 years for rape

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By Tinei Tuhwe

A 23-year old Mozambican will spend the next 16 years in a Zimbabwean prison following his conviction and sentencing for raping a minor.

According to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), the convict, whose name was not given, was convicted by a Chipinge magistrate after a full trial.

Prosecutors proved that the rape took place on March 12 this year.

The complainant, aged 13, was on her way from their homestead to a nearby business center in Chipinge.

“He grabbed her by the shoulders and dragged her to a nearby bush where he threatened her with a knife before raping her,” said the NPA in a statement.

The court heard the victim screamed for help and was heard by a passerby who rushed to the scene and rescued her while the suspect grabbed his clothes and took to his heels.

The matter was reported to the police leading to the arrest of the perpetrator.

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Nigeria recalls ‘toxic’ children’s cough syrup

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NIGERIA’S drug regulator has recalled a batch of Johnson & Johnson children’s cough syrup after tests showed it contained “an unacceptable high level” of a toxic and potentially fatal substance.

The substance, Diethylene glycol, “was found to cause acute oral toxicity in laboratory animals”, Nigeria’s National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) said on Wednesday

It added that human consumption of the Diethylene glycol results in toxic effects, including abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhoea, inability to pass urine, headache, altered mental state, and acute kidney injury which may lead to death.

The substance has been linked to the recent deaths of dozens of children in Cameroon and The Gambia.

Laboratory tests on the recalled Benylin Paediatric syrup also showed that it caused “acute oral toxicity in laboratory animals”, the regulator added.

Neither Johnson & Johnson nor Kenvue – which owns the Benylin brand after becoming independent from Johnson & Johnson last year- have commented on the NAFDAC’s statement.

The syrup was manufactured in South Africa in May 2021 and had an expiry date of April 2024.

The syrup’s packaging says it can be used for relieving cough and congestive symptoms and for treating fever and other allergic conditions among children aged between two and 12 years.

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