Thieves Blow Up Zimbabwe Supermarket


With unemployment in Zimbabwe still standing at above 90%, the Inclusive Government failing to formulate any policies that can create jobs and no opportunities for "doing deals", more and more people are turning to crime. An OK Supermarket was blown up last week by thieves who were after its safe. This is something that we knew only to happen in South Africa, not Zimbabwe and is testimony to the failure of the this government to give people hope, let alone jobs.

Harare, Zimbabwe, 19 October 2009


It is a sign of just how superficial the so-called "recovery and improvement" in Zimbabwe. It is a contradiction of the chest-beating and crowing from the MDC Tsvangirai especially, which has been claiming that it and ZANU PF have together brought relief to the people of Zimbabwe by improving their economic fortunes.


Last week, a group of thieves went to Chinhoyi and blew up an OK supermarket in the town, in a bid to get to the safe, where they thought money was being kept overnight (thieves are not the brightest of people, even at the best of times and it never occurred to them that no store keeps money overnight on-site).


The thieves managed to dislodge the safe from the wall at the back of the Supermarket with dynamite, but, of course, the rapid response alarm system immediately went off, prompting the thieves to high-tail it. The safe was still intact when the police and guards from the private security company engaged by OK Supermarkets arrived on the scene.


They had also left sticks of dynamite behind.


No one has been arrested yet, apparently.


This signals the descent of Zimbabwe into a chaotic society. Previously, this sort of thing was heard of in Zimbabwe when "tall tales" were told about South Africa, where it is known that thieves routinely blow up ATM machines in order to get to the cash inside.


Now we have the same here in Zimbabwe. Our banks still refuse to stock their ATMs with US dollars to any significant extent and we now know why. Unemployment in Zimbabwe is still running at over 90% despite what the Inclusive Government says. There are no opportunities for doing deals anymore, with foodstuffs and goods freely available in the shops now.


With most people out of employment and with no means to buy the goods that are now full in the shops, more and more are turning to crime.


The police in Zimbabwe (they have not arrested anyone in this case), appear more concerned with political matters than police matters, so Zimbabwe is ill-prepared for this new trend. Shops are now closing earlier than they did when dollarisation started and they wanted to maximise their profits. They are afraid of being raided, as happened in Harare City Center three months ago.


Meantime, in companies, because of the meagre wages being offered by employers who are taking their cue from a government that is paying civil servants slave wages of US$150 per month, employees are turning more and more to crime. Just last week, yet another employee was before the courts for defrauding his employer of US$24 000.


Despite what Tsvangirai and Mugabe say, this is not an improvement, Zimbabwe has simply exchanged one set of problems for another, just as bad and just as pervasive. The only the solution is to make sure that there is a new government with a new culture and a no-nonsense approach to policy formulation and holding public servants to account, not focused on gaining jobs for its party officials at the expense of a struggling nation.


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