BY IRENE MOYO
CONSUMER rights groups and residents associations’ dismissed the Central Banks’ run auction system as elitist, and not serving the ordinary men on the street.
They appealed to the authorities to reconsider and restructure the system to benefit ordinary citizens.
The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) replaced the inter-bank market system with a weekly foreign exchange auction system in June 2020.
At the time, authorities said this was meant to bring transparency and efficiency in foreign currency exchange rate and the economy.
But National Consumers Rights Association (NACORA) campaign and advocacy officer Effie Ncube said “the auction system is not designed for ordinary citizens and small businesses.”
“We want an action system that will enable small businesses to run,” Ncube said.
Consumer Council of Zimbabwe Southern Region Manager Comfort Muchekeza weighed in saying “ in a normal economy ordinary citizens should have access to Forex so as to cater their personal needs.”
The RBZ has said ordinary citizens can buy only US$50 from registered Bureaux de Change.
Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association (BPRA) chairperson Ambrose Sibindi said: “Higher pricing supposedly Black Market rate is the most being used by business which makes it harder for an ordinary citizen to buy forex and benefit from the auction system so this system benefits the elite.”