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Cash Crunch Blights Beggars Plight


Scarcity of cash in the country has resulted in increased uptake of plastic money in the country and this has made life unbearably tough for people who rely on street hand outs for survival, 263Chat can reveal.

By Lemuel Rangarira Chekai

With the economy reportedly heading back to the 2008 hyper inflationary environment and there seemingly being no solid solution to the situation, the visually impaired and street children who used to beg and get enough for a day’s meal are the hardest hit as more and more people are now using a combination of point of sale machines and mobile money services for their day to day expenses leaving no change to handout to those indeed.

In an interview with 263Chat, Gladys Chirabgwa and Limson Mambiyo a visually impaired couple from Harare’s Epworth suburb who operate along Cameron street near Copacabana in the Central Business District (CBD) confirmed that the struggle has also caught up with them just like any other person living in Zimbabwe if on not worse.

Being parents to four children, the twist in the economy has had devastating effects on the family as Mambiyo said.

 “Since people started relying on Ecocash and bank cards the amount of money we receive from well wishers has significantly dropped, before we could roughly get up to $15 a day but now on a day of serious hard work $5 is what we get.” Meaning usually they get less than that.

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“We used to get $20 every month end from the Social Welfare but now whenever we go there they always says there is no money” added Gladys

She also said it stresses her out so much when her kids are forced to stay home  because of lack of funds to pay their school fees.

 Using music as a luring tool Mr Mambayo would be on the guitar and his wife on the vocals  and hosho. The couple says they leave home at 5 am and by 6 am they will already be by their spot to leave at 11 am.

Meanwhile the deteriorating economy effects are also influencing criminal behavior to some of these hand out relying population as there is a rise in street children snatching valuables from people for resale at give away prices.

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263Chat is a Zimbabwean media organisation focused on encouraging & participating in progressive national dialogue

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