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Zimbabwe Bans Secondhand Underwear

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Zimbabwe may have an 80% unemployment rate, but one thing the country absolutely won't stand for is its impoverished citizens wearing used undergarments.

According to the Zimbabwe Mail, the country's finance minister Tendai Biti recently announced a total ban on the importation and sale of secondhand underwear.

"If you are a husband and you see your wife buying underwear from the flea market, you would have failed. If I was your in-law, I would take my daughter and urge you to first put your house in order if you still want her back," Biti told the paper.

The law went into effect on Dec. 30, 2011 calling for the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority to charge 40 percent duty, 15 percent value added tax and a $3 penalty for every kilogram (2.2 lbs) of imported underwear, according to The Guardian.

It is believed the ban will help address health concerns as well as work to protect the country's domestic textile industry.

Zimbabwe ranks among the poorest countries in the world, according to International Monetary Fund data.

The Daily Mail explains that Zimbabwe is not the first African country to outlaw the sale of pre-owned underwear. In 1994, Ghana also took a similar measure.

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