Illegal gold panners may be causing untold damage to the country’s rivers but illegal buyers are cashing in on these desperate villagers who are now selling the precious metal at ridiculously low prices just to afford a bucket or a packet of mealie meal.
The immediate image associated with democracy in Africa is of men dressed in tatters, pleading to remain alive.
Faced with the bitter realisation that gains expected from the economic structural adjustment programme and trade liberalisation like increased investment and employment creation are not forthcoming, the government seems to have been forced to move faster to recognise the informal sector – a sector long advocated by the World Bank, one of the major architects and sponsors of ESAPS.
The proliferation of political which kicked off with a national character but have degenerated into regional, tribal and other small cliques has solidified the fragile unity within the ruling ZANU-PF making it difficult for any existing parties to pose a formidable challenge to unseat it unless they change their present outlook.
The present monetary measures which resulted in building societies suspending lending money for new projects coupled with the current drought could be a blessing in disguise to the individual home developer who has ready cash.
In a typical example of how the government could be losing thousands of dollars through tax evasion, the High Court in Bulawayo, recently heard the case of a company that intended to purchase a property in Binga for $450 000 but would reflect a purchase price of $300 000 while the remainder was to be paid in cash “under the table.” The deal backfired when the seller was offered $500 00 cash by another buyer, but he was still taken to court to show cause why he should not sell to the company which engineered the deal and had entered into an agreement of sale first.