Zimbabwe has banned the sale of second-hand underwear. A new law has made it illegal to import or sell used pants, according to the Independent News Day newspaper.

It is now forbidden to import 'second-hand undergarments of any type form or description - whether purchased, donated or procured in any other manner.

The hand-me- down knicker band was introduced by finance minister Tendai Biti, who said he was shocked to discover many Zimbabweans in the poverty-stricken country bought used underwear from flea markets or stalls.

Mr Biti added: 'I am told we are now even importing women's underwear.

How does that happen? If you are a husband and you see your wife buying underwear from the flea market, you would have failed.

The independent News Day newspaper reported that the practise was prohibited under a government clampdown which became effective on December 30.

The bad economy in Zimbabwe had forced many residents into purchasing second hand underwear from markets which have either been supplied with the second hand stock or the underwear has been donated from other developed countries around the world.

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