The Movement for Democratic Change party led by former prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai (MDC-T) on Tuesday put its weight behind political parties and other individuals who are challenging the introduction of bond notes through the courts.
Former vice president Joice Mujuru, who now fronts the opposition Zimbabwe People First, is challenging the introduction of the bond notes at the constitutional court, where her case will be heard this Wednesday.
Harare businessman Fredrick Mutanda, who owns FCM Motors, has also filed a high court application challenging the bond notes, arguing that they are unconstitutional and also in violation of the Reserve Bank Act and other fiscal legislation.
Ordinary Zimbabweans, with the memories of the 2008 hyperinflation still lingering, are skeptical about the introduction of the paper currency, which the government hopes will tackle the liquidity crisis that has troubled the country.
In a statement, MDC-T national spokesperson Obert Gutu said the party was extremely saddened by the Zanu PF government’s insistence on the introduction of the notes despite broad disapproval from Zimbabweans.
“The position of the MDC regarding the introduction of bond notes is very clear and unambiguous. We are deeply opposed to the introduction of this worthless currency that is, in fact, the much discredited Zimbabwe dollar by another name.
In this respect, therefore, the MDC is in full support of the various political parties and other Zimbabwean business people who have decided to take legal action against the introduction of bond notes,” Gutu said.
He said the bond notes were likely to inflict further suffering for embattled citizens, adding the Zanu PF government should reverse its decision.
Gutu said the move would lead to a shortage of basic commodities, like what happened in the 2008 era as most importers would not have access to hard currency.
“Against all financial and economic logic, the Zanu PF regime has decided to introduce bond notes into the financial system. No rocket science is needed to appreciate the fact that the introduction of bond notes will wreak havoc with our economy,” he said.
He said Zimbabwe was importing more than 75% of its requirements, making it a net importer of goods, including the staple food maize.
“In order for the country to import food and other essential goods, we badly need hard currency. Bond notes are not hard currency,” he said.
Gutu said if the government was sincere that the bond notes were backed by a $200 million facility provided by Afrixim Bank, it should release that money into the market instead of printing the “worthless” bond notes.