Home Uncategorized Zimbabwe auctions $1m worth of cattle to raise money for AU

Zimbabwe auctions $1m worth of cattle to raise money for AU

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Mugabe presents cheque to AU leaders.
Photo: BBC
Zimbabwe has auctioned cattle worth $1m
(£770,000) to raise money for the African Union (AU) Foundation to help end the
“donor dependency syndrome”, President Robert Mugabe has said.
He added that he had donated 300 cattle from
his herd, and other Zimbabweans doubled the number as they wanted to contribute
towards a “noble cause”.

Mr Mugabe handed the $1m cheque to the AU at its
leaders’ summit in Ethiopia, BBC said.
The donation comes amid a severe cash and food
crisis in Zimbabwe.
Last year, more than four million people were
in need of food aid in the southern African state after rains failed.
However, there has been a bumper harvest this
year, with the country expected to be self-sufficient for the first time in
years.
The opposition blames the government for food
shortages, saying its controversial land reform programme has ruined the
farming sector.
Zimbabwe has also been forced to introduce
so-called bond notes after running out of the US dollar, the main currency
people use.
Hyperinflation forced the government to
abandon the Zimbabwe dollar in 2009.
Foreign Minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi said
the cattle had been donated mostly by farmers who had benefited from the land
reform programme, the state-run Herald newspaper reported.
Their donation was an “expansion” of
a 2015 pledge by Mr Mugabe to donate 300 cattle, he added.
Speaking at the summit, Mr Mugabe said it was
a “modest contribution” and a “symbolic step” towards
helping to end the “donor dependency syndrome” in Africa.
On its website, the AU Foundation says it
focuses on development programmes for youth and women, and promoting gender
equality.
Mr Mumbengegwi said the donation was
significant as it showed that the AU could find innovative ways to raise money
for its projects.
Mr Mugabe, during his term as AU chairman in
2015 and 2016, campaigned for the AU to be self-financed as about 60% of its
budget came from foreign donors, the Herald reported.
Cows are a prized asset in many rural parts of
Africa, where families measure their wealth by the size of their herd.

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