US extends Zim sanctions ahead of elections

iStock
iStock

Harare - The US senate and congress have passed a bill meant to extend the sanctions the world superpower imposed on Zimbabwe back in 2001.

The Bill, titled the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Amendment Act (S. 2779) was passed on Wednesday, ahead of the southern African country's elections on Monday July 30, 2018.

Zimbabwe has been under US sanctions since 2001, after the government, then led by former president Robert Mugabe, embarked on a land reform programme that saw white commercial farmers displaced from their farms.

The bill details the steps Zimbabwe must take for US sanctions to be lifted, namely the holding of free and fair elections.

The US also accuses the Mugabe-led government of driving the economy into the ground and violently suppressing any opposition to their power.

"This bill makes important changes to update the 2001 Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act. It lays out our expectations for a free and fair election, as well as actions needed to achieve key economic reforms.

"The expectations of the 2001 legislation hold true today – Zimbabwe must make credible progress towards holding free and fair elections, restore the rule of law and ensure military subordination to the civilian government, among other desperately needed reforms," said the US, in a presser released by its Foreign Affairs Committee.

The US said the upcoming elections would be an opportunity to chart a dramatic new course for Zimbabwe, and the next president must take bold and immediate action to address key governance and economic issues.

Following its passing, in both the senate and congress, the Bill now heads to president Donald Trump's desk for his signature.

* Sign up to Fin24's top news in your inbox: SUBSCRIBE TO FIN24 NEWSLETTER

ZAR/USD
16.74
(+0.33)
ZAR/GBP
21.12
(+0.43)
ZAR/EUR
18.98
(+0.13)
ZAR/AUD
11.68
(+0.00)
ZAR/JPY
0.16
(+0.65)
Gold
1812.29
(+0.69)
Silver
19.25
(+2.66)
Platinum
848.00
(+2.97)
Brent Crude
43.02
(0.00)
Palladium
2025.50
(+3.31)
All Share
56132.57
(+1.29)
Top 40
51800.24
(+1.26)
Financial 15
10683.83
(+2.02)
Industrial 25
76435.13
(+0.39)
Resource 10
53616.16
(+2.16)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo
Company Snapshot
Voting Booth
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
I'm not really directly affected
18% - 1991 votes
I am taking a hit, but should be able to recover in the next year
23% - 2603 votes
My finances have been devastated
35% - 3890 votes
It's still too early to know what the full effect will be
25% - 2791 votes
Vote