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Chingonzo Seeks White House Meeting to Discuss Zimbabwe Sanctions

Zimbabwean Entrepreneur Takunda Chingonzo.

Zimbabwean Entrepreneur Takunda Chingonzo.

A young Zimbabwean entrepreneur, Takunda Chingonzo, who was thrust into the limelight Tuesday when he shared the platform with United States President Barack Obama at the U.S.-Africa Business Forum, says he’s now seeking a meeting to discuss sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe by the United States in 2002.

He says the sanctions are hampering Zimbabweans from doing business with American companies.

Chingonzo asked President Obama to clarify his country’s sanctions targeting President Robert Mugabe and members of his inner circle.

The 21-year old National University of Science and Technology Student and co-founder of Saisai Wireless in Zimbabwe, said his efforts to work with American firms had been affected by the sanctions that the U.S. says target only Mr. Mugabe and members of his inner circle.

Mr. Obama said the situation in Zimbabwe was unique, adding the challenge has been to balance "our desire to help the people of Zimbabwe with what frankly has been a repeated violation of basic democratic practices and human rights inside of Zimbabwe."

Pressed further by Chingonzo, who said the targeted measures should not hurt business, Mr. Obama suggested a meeting with young Zimbabwean business people to discuss the issue further to ensure the sanctions do not hamper their efforts to do business with Americans.

Chingonzo told VOA Studio 7’s Marvellous Mhlanga-Nyahuye Wednesday that he’s now seeking a meeting with White House on the issue to ensure Zimbabwean business people and ordinary people do not continue to get affected by the so-called targeted measures.