- Southern Africa
- Trade - Finance - Governance
Zimbabwe: Mugabe rejects western assistance
President Robert Mugabe on Thursday shocked his inner circle when he boldly declared that the southern African country does not need Western aid to revive the troubled economy.
The aging Robert Mugabe’s pronouncement, during a speech to his Zanu PF central committee meeting in Harare, flew in the face of the country’s attempts to lobby for the removal of sanctions and the provision of financial assistance.
“Zimbabwe shall recover by her wits and resources. Zimbabwe will not be saved by any country or organisation, least of all Western. Let our partners in the inclusive government get that so we do not waste our efforts on useless initiatives.
“It is our mineral resources — all these helped by the ingenuity and entrepreneurship of our people which will turn this economy and country around!” He thundered, while insisting that the vegetative economy would be revived through agriculture and mineral resources.
Mugabe said Zimbabwe will sell the controversial diamonds, with or without the Kimberley Certification Process as he argued that Zimbabwe has “been put in the dock because these same countries have imposed illegal sanctions on us for our total ruin. Diamonds would thus blunt their sanctions by enabling us to offset and checkmate their disastrous effects on our people and on our economy.”
Mugabe accused the Americans, Canadians and Australians of trying to constrain the country economically and politically by lobbying for the condemnation of Zimbabwean diamonds.
“Our diamonds are not only bright and clean, they are greatly demanded worldwide. We have the technology to polish them. Let no one doubt our resolve to sell them, with or without the KPCS, with or without the blessing of the USA, Canada, Australia or their NGO pawns,” he said.
“We do not need the blessings of anyone, least of all nations with chequered origins, and equally chequered profiles in spilling so much blood to lay their filthy hands on resources of other nations” he added.
Just last week one of Mugabe’s closest lieutenants was at the European Union to discuss lifting travel and financial restrictions on the ZANU-PF Party and some of its companies.
Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa, of the ZANU-PF Party, along with members of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change, and a smaller MDC faction had meetings with European Union officials in Brussels.
Under discussion was an eight-year-old travel and financial restrictions against Mugabe’s ZANU-PF Party and some government institutions judged to have financially supported ZANU-PF. The meeting followed months of negotiations to have the European Union travel ban waived for Chinamasa.
During the past decade, the European Union, the United States and other Western nations have imposed restrictions against Mugabe and his close allies for alleged political repression and human-rights abuses.
However, the International Monetary Fund says the cash-strapped Zimbabwe is to ask for debt forgiveness, which would condemn it to the status of a "poor country".
In its latest report IMF said Zimbabwe was in state of “debt distress’ and was preparing a request for debt relief kin terms of the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries protocol. The move to declare bankruptcy has been a cause for fierce debate in Zimbabwe’s turbulent inclusive government.