The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Union (ZCTU) has called for protests to take place in major urban centers - including the capital Harare and the cities of Chinhoyi, Gweru, Bulawayo, Masvingo, and Mutare - on Thursday, October 11. Protesters intend to denounce a new controversial 2 percent tax on electronic money transfers. Furthermore, the union is calling on the government to take measures to address a sharp increase in the prices of consumer goods. Clashes between protesters and police cannot be ruled out. Further related protests are possible in the coming weeks.
Authorities have reportedly implemented the tax in a bid to address a major cash shortage affecting the country.
Zimbabwe has been experiencing a deteriorating economic situation for over a year, due in part to a lack of liquidity. As of October 2018, inflation rates continue to increase as the government prints bond notes in response to cash shortages linked to foreign currency shortages. The government had hoped that the July 30 elections would lead to increased and much-needed foreign investment, but this has not yet materialized.
Individuals in Zimbabwe are advised to avoid all protests due to the risk of violence and closely monitor developments to the situation.
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