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Over 100 Zimbabwean shop owners arrested for not accepting local currency

The arrested shopkeepers have been charged with breaching a section of the Bank Use Promotion Act.

Zimbabwean flag. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

HARARE - Police in Zimbabwe have arrested more than 100 shop owners and traders for refusing to accept payment in local banknotes.

There is growing opposition to the use of local currency as it continues to lose value on the back of hyperinflation.

Since the launch of the police operation six days ago, 102 people have been arrested, and 28 have already appeared in court.

They’ve been charged with breaching a section of the Bank Use Promotion Act for refusing to accept payment in local bond notes and coins.

With inflation at more than 785% in Zimbabwe, most people now want to be paid in US dollars, even though only a fraction of workers in the country are paid in foreign currency.

Many families do receive small monthly remittances from members working abroad, and local demand for these remittances may well go up as businesses increasingly demand US dollars.

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