Despite President Robert Mugabe’s continued misrule of Zimbabwe, Norway has decided it will resume cash aid to the desperate African nation that it cut off back in 2000. Norway admits that Mugabe has brought little more than “years of misrule, embezzlement and hyperinflation” to Zimbabwe, but the nation is set to receive NOK 58 million from the Norwegian government.
Reuters reports the cash will be distributed to various non-governmental organisations (NGOs), the United Nations, and the World Bank. They, in turn, will use the cash to boost health and education programs in Zimbabwe, as well as try to encourage the fledgling government of national unity currently struggling to survive.
“Zimbabwe has stared down into the abyss, but is determined to climb out of it. If the new government proves capable of functioning, Zimbabwe could become an example of a country that has avoided becoming a failed state,” Norway’s Minister of International Development, Erik Solheim, said.
“It is therefore important to support Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and the new Unity Government to help the country rebuild,” Solheim continued. “If we fail to support those who are fighting for change now, Zimbabwe could become a new Somalia.”
Norway is one of the first nations to resume cash aid to Zimbabwe, and other Western aid is still only just beginning to trickle in. The World Bank recently announced it would be giving a USD 22 million grant to Zimbabwe, its first to the country since 2001. The UK also promised USD 23.9 million in humanitarian aid in April.