Harare (New Ziana) – President Emerson Mnangagwa on Thursday said government will accelerate implementation of economic development programmes next year to make up for lost time in 2020 which was plagued by the COVID-19 pandemic.
In his New Year’s message to the nation, President Mnangagwa said government had laid the foundations for economic growth, including by stabilising the foreign currency exchange rate and setting up the Zimbabwe Investment Development Authority.
“Now is the time to press our foot on the pedal and confidently move forward undeterred to modernise and industrialise our country towards vision 2030,” he said.
“As outlined in our national budget and National Development Strategy 1, our ambitions for 2021 are bold and to realise them we must be united. With the optimism of plentiful rainfall and promising news of vaccines against the pandemic, 2021 must be a year of progress, development and making up for lost time. As a result of our collective, hard honest work and unshakeable loyalty to our national interest there is abundant evidence that we are indeed masters of our destiny.”
President Mnangagwa added: “Our industries are steadily increasing their capacity utilisation, leading to more locally produced goods in or shops.”
The President commended the country’s health workers and Zimbabweans for their perseverance in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“As we mark the end of a different and yet successful and productive year, as your President and on behalf of the government of Zimbabwe I salute the people of our great country both at home and abroad for their resilience, perseverance focus unity of purpose and adaptiveness in the face of the prevailing COVID-19 new normal.
“I further applaud all stakeholders including traditional and religious leaders, community based organisations local authorities and political parties for mobilising their communities to positively participate in national programmes such as the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, national prayer and fasting and pvumvudza/intwasa ,” he said.
“To our fellow citizens in the diaspora, we are grateful to you for the continued support rendered to your families here back home even under the difficult and constrained circumstances of the year, we are also thankful to various governments, development partners and the international community who stood in solidarity with us.”
He added: “Let me take this opportunity to yet again commend our health service personnel, the security sector as well as other frontline workers for their dedication to duty under the unsettling conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic. Throughout the year, I was proud of the Zimbabwean people in the face of adversity you were disciplined, you were responsible, you were peaceful and united and through your actions thousands of lives were saved. It is my profound hope that we carry with us this spirit of commitment and unity into the New Year and beyond. Equally may the events of the year 2020 remind us that we are all bonded together as diverse, but one people, united by one flag and one national anthem.”
President Mnangagwa highlighted some of the achievements scored by government in 2020 ranging from infrastructure development, media reforms and the re-engagement agenda.
“Several irrigation schemes were rehabilitated in line with our small holder irrigation scheme development and expansion programme,” he said.