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Found: 50,000 dollars

It’s amazing what you can find walking to work in Harare. Just past the sign that says ‘MARS’, a fresh 50,000 Zimbabwean dollar note was just lying in the mud. That about sums things up for the Zimbabwean dollar: pronounced ‘dead’ by the Finance Minister, Tendai Biti, a couple of weeks ago, it is a useless currency in a (US) dollarised economy.

Further along the road, a hundred metres ahead of me, a van pulled over onto the verge next to a small dirty stream caused by a burst water pipe from one of the Embassy Buildings. I saw two people get out, dip cups into the water flow, drink, wash out their cups and get back in the van. There is still cholera in Harare. Drinking from any water source is a dangerous business, especially by the roadside.

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