Home Affairs minister Ignatius Chombo has threatened to take unspecified action against some white and foreign-owned business that closed shop on Wednesday after heeding a call for a national stay away.
Addressing journalists on Wednesday, Chombo singled out some fast food outlets, among other businesses, and accused them of working to enforce a “regime change agenda” in the country.
He said the closure of business in support of the national shutdown, vindicated government’s claims the protests were being supported by foreign governments, including France and United States.
“The closure of white-owned businesses vindicates the intelligence, which we gathered pointing to the fact that a third force supported by Western governments was behind these protests,” he said.
Despite the businesses being privately-owned, Chombo said they were supposed to open because of the promise they made to their customers.
“When you go to the front door of these shops, it is written that we are open Monday to Friday from 8am to 8pm, so when at nine you are not opening, and you are telling your workers that go home. To us, it means you are supporting this stay away,” Chombo said.
“You better surrender your licence because we have so many people, who are willing to do that business. We want genuine businesspersons, who are interested in building our country. It is in our interest to make sure communities are served by these businesses, which are closing and supporting something illegal.”
On Wednesday, Zimbabweans through #ThisFlag movement, Tajamuka/Sesijikile and Occupy Africa Unity Square called for a national stay-away to push the government to lift the ban on the importation of certain goods, reverse its decision to introduce bond notes and stop corruption.
Asked what action government will take against the concerned entities, Chombo said: “We will deal with them. I can’t tell you what we are going to do, but we will definitely act if they continue.”