“Masisi was called by ZANU PF as another mouth piece”
Zimbabwean opposition parties have slammed President Mokgweetsi Masisi for allegedly encouraging and participating in partisan politics during his solidarity visit to the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union –Patriotic Front (ZANU- PF) last week.
Welcomed for the country’s Agricultural Show, by well-wishers dressed mostly in ZANU PF regalia, Masisi said, “Botswana continues to call for the removal of sanctions against Zimbabwe. We just came from our elective congress and ZANU PF was represented well. The two parties have relations, we are friends.”
However, Masisi’s remarks have drawn criticism from the country’s opposition parties.
In an interview with The Botswana Gazette, Citizen Coalition Change (CCC) spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere said that it is “regrettable”and “undiplomatic” for Masisi to make a state visit so brazenly partisan while, “closing one’s eyes to the lives of ordinary Zimbabweans.”
“We find it odd that at a time when ZANU PF is consumed with bad governance, violating human rights and victimizing the alternative, a head of State would stand in solidarity with such conduct. Any solidarity with persecution of citizens, weaponizing the law against the opponent and causing mass suffering is not good solidarity. Solidarity must be with the citizens who are flooding neighbouring countries on account of bad governance, injustice and bad governance. The region must come together to ensure there is electoral reform in Zimbabwe so we do not have another disputed election next year,” Mahere said.
“Masisi was called by ZANU PF as another mouth piece for its call for the removal of targeted sanctions. He missed the point on migration challenges in Botswana as well as the golden opportunity to call ZANU PF to order. The oppression of citizens and the arrest of opposition members should have been the topic of discussion. This was indeed a wasted opportunity to bring the Zimbabwean issues to the fore not for peer reviewing each other,” said Transform Zimbabwe President, Jacob Ngarivhume.
At the time of going to press the Minister of International Affairs and Cooperation Dr Lemogang Kwape was yet to respond to The Botswana Gazette’s enquiries.