Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Zimbabwe $2

$2 not $200,000, originally uploaded by danny angus.

The BBC report that Zimbabwe is introducing a $200,000 note.

I thought it might be worth posting this picture of a $2 note I brought home with me after visiting a Zimbabwean friend in 1993. It is literally not worth the paper it is printed on.

At that time $2 would cost you £0.20 (20p) and $2.35 would buy you 20 cigarettes, the same cigarettes cost £2.35 in the UK, mainly because of duty.

Now (by which I mean *today* as inflation is running so high in Zimbabwe), if a grain of sugar weighs a milligram, this note would buy you five grains.

Zimbabwe is a lovely country and the people I met were very friendly. The sight of the kids in neat school uniforms coming out of traditional mud hut villages to line up for the school bus filled me with hope. Many people I spoke to then believed that Zimbabwe could be a role model for the whole of Africa, that dream must be well and truly dead now. How much longer are we going to sit around watching this get worse and worse?


Unknown said...

1/ I'm not blaming Mugabe, I'm simply sad to see the problems experienced by the people of Zimbabwe. A beautiful country of good people which I have become very fond of.
2/ I don't think that the fact of the policy of land reform is the whole cause of the current problems, land reform predates them.
3/ I already know that whites are not put on earth to rule black people, but if you can be an American Black man White people can surely be Africans too. I am saddened that whites and blacks in Zimbabwe cannot sort out their country without this chaos, it has so much potential. South Africa has problems too, but they are managing to make progress without destroying their society.

I hope that life in New Orleans is bearable, we were shocked at the devastation.

With respect, d.

Anonymous said...

Danny, thanks for getting back with your comment. I agree that whites can be Africans and I pray that all Zimbabweans will work for the good of the country. I have never stepped foot on African soil, the home of my ancestors. I want to visit Zimbabwe after college and I hope to meet many good people like yourself.
I'll stay positive because I believe that the majority of people in the world want to live in peace and harmony.
I thank you for asking about New Orleans. It will be a long and slow recovery. Over half of the population has not come back. On my block alone, there are three abandon homes. People don't want to return to New Orleans because the corporate jobs have left and law enforcement in the city has not recovered from the devastation. Crime is a huge problem in the city-----but I'm optimistic things will improve. It will take time and brave natives like me to stay the course and rebuild our city. New Orleans still has a lot of assets: The food, music and mardi gras are just a few of the reasons I'll never leave. Again, thanks for responding and God bless you.

Anonymous said...

Hi all

I'm African and did a talk at Shell late last year during the Black History Week and the question I poised was 'how long can we continue to blame the white man for the destruction of Africa?' Okay, in the 1960s, when the white man left Nigeria they 'may' have taken some stuff, but they left us with light and water -now they've gone we've somehow managed to go back to the days before they came round and we don't even have electricity and water running in every home anymore - sad!

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