US removes former Zimbabwe Electoral Commission chairman from its sanctions list

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The United States today removed former Zimbabwe Electoral Commission chairman Theophilus Pharaoh Gambe from its sanctions list which at one time had nearly 100 individuals and more than 60 entities.

The sanctions, which have been in force since March 2003, were extended for a year by President Barack Obama before he left office in January.

They prohibit United States companies from doing business with people on the list.

US companies operating in Zimbabwe such as Pioneer and Pannar Seed Companies, Coca Cola and Universal Leaf Tobacco company have to seek permission from the United States treasury department to do business in Zimbabwe.

The United States has been removing individuals and companies from the list either after they are dead or they are no longer associated with the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front.

Gambe left the commission last year when his term of office expired.

The European Union lifted its sanctions on Zimbabwe in 2014 leaving only President Robert Mugabe, his wife Grace and the Zimbabwe Defence Industries.