With inflation at over 4,500 percent and hospitals, water, power and food access close to collapse, Zimbabwe faces its worst crisis since independence from Britain, reports the Associated Press.
In June, the government of President Robert Mugabe accused store owners of fueling the inflation and ordered 50 percent price cuts on commodities such as bread, eggs and milk. Some stores are now refusing to re-order because prices are so low.
Many Zimbabweans are coping with the food shortage by traveling to South Africa for goods, but Mugabe’s government will soon put a stop to that with a new law to limiting the import of food.
Thousands of other Zimbabweans are simply leaving the country, looking for work and housing in South Africa. Often, they are forced to return when they discover there is neither.
Desperate for food, some people have begun to eat dogs. Mugabe’s proposed solution to the crisis is to print more money.
Politically, Zimbabwe’s opposition faces its greatest challenge to date.
Archbishop Pius Ncube, the most vocal and well-known Mugabe critic in the country, is being sued for adultery by a man who insists the cleric slept with his wife.
Government television ran graphic footage allegedly showing Ncube and the woman, and state-run newspapers have attacked the archbishop.
His followers have risen up to support Ncube against what they believe is a state-backed plot to discredit him and his cause.
Reform campaigners and members of the official opposition have faced severe beatings and arrests after staging peaceful demonstrations throughout the country.
Several were hospitalized after a demonstration last week.
Elsewhere, lack of evidence forced police to release 34 opposition activists they had accused of planning a bomb attack after five months in jail.
“Archbishop Ncube ‘not alone'”
Agence France-Presse, July 25, 2007
“Hungry Zimbabweans urged to eat dogs”
South African Press Association, July 26, 2007
“Judge: Zimbabwean police faked evidence”
Associated Press, July 26, 2007
“Hungry Zimbabweans flock to South Africa”
Australian Broadcasting Corporation, July 27, 2007
“Mugabe says will print more money if there isn’t enough”
Associated Press, July 28, 2007