Zim not on Sadc agenda

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The Herald

Herald Reporter
Zimbabwe is not on the agenda of the Sadc summit to be held next Monday, neither is it up for discussion at the African Union (AU), since there is no crisis to warrant its placement on anyone’s agenda, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said yesterday.

The recent visit by three South African envoys was a peer-to-peer engagement between President Cyril Ramaphosa and President Mnangagwa.

Minister Mutsvangwa said there had been false claims from several quarters that there was a crisis in Zimbabwe.

“All said, there is no crisis in Zimbabwe that needs external intervention under established international treaties and conventions. It is important that we refute press claims of a crisis in Zimbabwe. ‘Crisis’ in diplomacy has specific and defined circumstances that go beyond day-to-day banter,” she said.

“It is common knowledge that there is no Zimbabwean issue before the Sadc Organ on Politics, Defence and Security. Neither is there any such issue before the Sadc Summit. Definitely there is no such issue before the continental body, the African Union.”

On Monday, President Mnangagwa held a meeting with three envoys from President Ramaphosa who included former South African Minister of Safety and Security Dr Sydney Mufamadi, who was leading the team, the former Speaker of Parliament Baleka Mbete and former Minister of Public Service and Administration Advocate Ngoako Ramatlhodi.

“This was at the peer-to-peer level of brotherly Heads of State of two sister nations that enjoy excellent diplomatic bilateral relations. The envoys brought in their message, which was duly delivered to the host President. In return they received a briefing from President ED Mnangagwa. The reciprocal messages are the property of the leaders and it is their prerogative as to how they can be handled or disseminated,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.

She said comments from some figures in the ANC, and irate remarks from South African opposition ranks, should not be taken as the basis of creating perceptions or attributions of a crisis in other nations.

She said in Zimbabwe there was an opposition, which lost elections in 2018 but then threatened not to accept elections results that did not declare them as winners.

“The subjective opinions, be they from third party political entities or diplomatic circles, are not the proper guide in the conduct of diplomacy among sovereign and friendly nations,” she said.

Turning to compensation for white former farmers, Minister Mutsvangwa said the decision was not only a fulfilment of aspirations of Zimbabweans

as expressed in the 2013 constitutional referendum, but was on the basis of Zanu PF election manifesto, which it campaigned for and won in 2018 harmonised elections.

“Zanu PF was elected inclusively on the basis of that political undertaking. Let it be also noted that the signing of the Global Compensation Agreement on July 27, 2020, was a fulfilment of the aspirations of the Zimbabwean people as expressed in the referendum of March 16, 2013. In that instance, nearly 95 percent of the population endorsed the new Constitution with the quoted provisions therein,” she said.

She said compensating white former farmers for the improvements that they had put on their farms did not in any way mean that Government was reversing the land reform programme.

“This mischief is purveyed by the loony and extreme right wing circles, just that they camouflage with the mantle of left-wing populism and infantile pan-African radicalism,” she said.

She said Zanu PF was a revolutionary party that fought a non-racial and just struggle for majority rule.

Turning on treatment of prisoners on remand, Minister Mutsvangwa said the country’s justice system was blind to political persuasion, rank, creed, race, social and political networks.

Prisoners had a constitutional right to be protected from public health risks such as Covid-19 and that might include bringing in measures such as stopping or limiting the number of visitors and external items prisoners could have access to.

On the economy, Minister Mutsvangwa said the Second Republic had introduced a raft of measures to stabilise prices that included the foreign exchange auction system, much to the relief of Zimbabweans.

“The opposition and their foreign handlers, with their varying ignorance and mischief, have been trying to create a psychosis of crisis. On the other side President Mnangagwa has been busy on a positive and rewarding trajectory much to the relief of the people of Zimbabwe. He has signed a raft of astute Statutory Instruments that have since tamed a wild west jungle that was hitherto the monetary and foreign exchange markets,” she said.

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