President Emmerson Mnangagwa yesterday challenged Zanu PF and its organs to lead the way in telling the Zimbabwean success stories to counter anti-Zimbabwe sentiments being peddled by the country’s detractors.

Addressing the 344th session of the Zanu PF Politburo meeting at the party headquarters in Harare yesterday, the President set the record straight on the recent visit by an African National Congress delegation from South Africa that came and engaged Zanu PF as sister parties, at an indaba that debunked the crisis narrative which fugitives and opposition functionaries would like to foist on Zimbabwe.

“Our people must be updated and made aware. The trend, whereby our detractors use popular culture and arts to attack and undermine our nation, unity, peace and value systems cannot be allowed to continue.

“Patriotic artists from across the country must be nurtured and appropriately empowered to facilitate the preservation of our national heritage, identity and pride,” he said.

Last week, the ANC sent a delegation led by its secretary-general, Cde Ace Magashule, which met Zanu PF following blatant misrepresentations on social media propagated by criminal G40 elements in South Africa and other parts of the continent.

The ANC delegation’s visit came after South African President Cyril Ramaphosa sent envoys to deliver a message, between Heads of State and Government, to his counterpart President Mnangagwa.

President Mnangagwa said ANC and Zanu PF continue to share experiences and strategies in view of the ongoing onslaught by detractors.

“As you are aware, the party received a delegation from our sister party, the ANC. We continue as former liberation movements to share experiences and other strategies in view of the ongoing onslaught by our detractors and neo-colonialists. Such solidarity and exchanges must be strengthened across all the leagues of our parties,” said President Mnangagwa.

He scoffed at some opposition parties, some churches and civic society organisations coveting to meeting the ANC delegation saying such attempts were futile and mere dreams.

“Presidential envoys remain Presidential envoys from one President to another. Party envoys remain party envoys from one party to another. Those who dream otherwise are allowed in democracy to dream,” said President Mnangagwa.

Zanu PF has said that “the party-to-party meeting” comes against a “backdrop of false claims that Zimbabwe is a nation in crisis”.

After meeting, both ZANU PF and the ANC delegation dismissed as false the reports that there is an economic and political crisis in Zimbabwe.

The Second Republic under President Mnangangwa has created jobs, built houses and commissioned infrastructure developments taking shape around the country as it drives the process towards achieving Vision 2030, making Zimbabwe an upper middle income economy.

“As we propel the development agenda, there cannot be a ‘them and us mentality’. Government is a product of the party. Vision 2030 will only be realised through working together, in peace, and unity,” he said.

President Mnangagwa said so far, the milestones and targets set out in the party manifesto for the 2018 elections are beginning to show throughout the country.

Turning to agriculture which is the cornerstone of the economy, President Mnangagwa said preparations for the forthcoming cropping season are gathering momentum. There had been overwhelming response and implementation of the Presidential Climate-Proofed Inputs Pfumvudza programme.

“I challenge the leadership of the party from the Politburo and Central Committee right down to the cell levels, to be exemplary producers and also lead in promoting and driving the culture of productivity across all sectors,” he said.

Through the direct intervention of Government, the macroeconomic environment continues to stabilise, resulting in reduced volatility in foreign currency exchange rates and in prices of goods and services.

“As a result of the strides we are making, we envision the gradual increase in the number of jobs created. So far, some sectors of the economy are already reporting positive developments with regards to employment levels and opportunities created.

“NSSA has to date reported over 214 000 jobs created, in spite of the prevailing environment characterised by illegal sanctions, persistent droughts and Covid-19,” he said.

Development projects financed through the devolution programme are now visible in the wards, thereby promoting broadbased and equal development.