Nigerian students protest Zim sanctions

Review & Mail Writer

African Students in Nigeria, under the aegis of the All-Africa Students Union (AASU), have pleaded with the United States, European Union, United Nations  and others to urgently review the protracted sanctions against Zimbabwe. 

Nigerian media report that on Friday, AASU president, Osisiogu Osikenyi Enyinnaya convened a press conference in the capital Abuja, and made the call.

According to the students body sanctions have affected the state of Zimbabwe’s economy over the past years, with periods of hyperinflation rendering the local currency worthless, leading to high levels of inflation as well as severe shortages of fuel, power and water. 

The students expressed solidarity with Zimbabwe  and called for the lifting of the two-decade sanctions and other punitive measures imposed on  Zimbabwe  in preparation for observance of the  Anti-Sanctions Day against Zimbabwe on  October 25, 2023 in Harare. 

Enyinnaya said the call to lift sanctions became imperative given the protracted sanctions that have adversely impacted “Our Generation of Zimbabweans”, the country’s thriving economy and indeed, the entire Southern Africa nation in the past 20 years.

The students argue that sanctions are counterproductive.

He stated that the sanctions were slowing down progress, inhibiting economic recovery and punishing the most vulnerable people in Zimbabwe. 

“An attempt to perpetuate the already devastating sanction may be tantamount to an attempt to kill a snake in a precious earthen pot; and inadvertently breaking the precious pot to pieces,” Enyinnaya said.

He explained that Zimbabwe had undertaken reforms that needed to be recognised through loosening sanctions.

“Having paid keen attention to the 4-Key Reform Pillars for Zimbabwe’s implementation programme which includes governance reforms, land reforms, compensation of former farm and the resolution of bilateral investment protection agreements; that the President Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa-led administration is sufficiently  committed to a sanction-free Zimbabwe.”

Said Enyinnaya: “Evidence abound in history and contemporary case studies that have proven that Imposed sanctions often fail in achieving their intended goals; often inadvertently proving to be counterproductive in advancing human rights, democracy, and press freedom; and having adverse socio-economic and political effects of sanctions on the vulnerable segments such as women, children and minorities of target populations as may the case in Zimbabwe.”

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