Zimbabwe's President Emmerson Mnangagwa has promised to rejuvenate the landlocked African nation's economy, but his topmost priority during the first 100 days in office will be a drive against corruption.
Mnangagwa, a long-time ally of his predecessor Robert Mugabe who was recently overthrown in a military coup, himself faces corruption allegations. The newly inaugurated president said there will no tolerance towards any kind of fraud while he is in power.
During his first national address on Wednesday, 20 December, the 75-year-old Mnangagwa said: "The goal of my government is to build a new Zimbabwe based on the crown values of honesty, transparency, accountability and hard work."
Local and foreign cartels engaged in illegal gold trade will soon face the government's heat, he warned.
"Economic development requires a clean government," the president added. "On individual cases of corruption, every case must be investigated and punished in accordance with the dictates of our laws. There should be no sacred cows."
He promised to take a number of steps to reconnect Zimbabwe with the global community after decades-long isolation. Mnangagwa has already abolished a Mugabe-era stipulation which forced foreign firms to cede 51% of ownership to local companies.
"My government is committed to open Zimbabwe out to investment by building a free and transparent economy which benefits Zimbabweans and is welcoming to outsiders," he told lawmakers during a joint session of both houses of parliament.
Mugabe's 37-year-long rule has left the Zimbabwean economy in dire straits with skyrocketing inflation.
Due to rampant human rights abuses, the southern African nation has been facing strict economic sanctions by the US and Europe.
Mnangagwa took office in late November after a series of dramatic events unfolded in Zimbabwean politics culminating in the removal of Mugabe.