Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Zimbabwe News Bulletin: Ndlovu Will Block UN Action; Kenya Officially Opposes Military Solution; Illegal Regime Change Plots Continue, etc.

We’ll block West at UN: Ndlovu

Herald Reporter

GOVERNMENT will block any efforts by Britain and the United States to have Zimbabwe on the agenda of the United Nations Security Council pursuant to aggression.

The two Western countries that have been trying to use the cholera outbreak as a pretext for war on Zimbabwe are expected to push for a discussion on Zimbabwe when the Security Council meets today.

The Minister of Information and Publicity, Cde Sikhanyiso Ndlovu, yesterday said it would be improper for Western countries — led by Britain and her allies — to put Zimbabwe on the agenda.

"You do not convene a UN Security Council meeting for a sovereign state without consulting that country," he said.

Cde Ndlovu said the Security Council only deals with critical threats to international peace and security.

"We are not a threat. If they insist we will work hard to block it with the assistance of our friends," he said.

Cde Ndlovu said though it was unfortunate that Britain was pushing to have Zimbabwe on the Security Council agenda, the attempt will flop.

The Anglo-Saxon moves are out of sync with last Friday’s gazetting of Constitutional Amendment Number 19 Bill that seeks to pave way for the formation of an inclusive Government.

The AU and Sadc have since dismissed British and American calls for a military invasion of Zimbabwe with Sadc calling for the swearing in of Prime Minister-designate Mr Morgan Tsvangirai and his two deputies.

This followed the gazetting of Constitutional Amendment Number 19 Bill.

MDC-T has been dragging its feet over joining the inclusive Government hoping its Western allies would have Zimbabwe on the Security Council agenda to facilitate invasion and illegal
regime change.

The party’s spokesperson, Mr Nelson Chamisa, was quoted as telling Western media that despite the gazetting of the Constitutional Amendment Number 19 Bill, there were still some outstanding issues.

"Gazetting the Bill . . . does not automatically translate into passing it into law. That can only take place if outstanding issues have been addressed. Otherwise we will not support the Bill," he said.

According to reports, the Security Council is set to hold a closed-door meeting on Zimbabwe today.

US State Department spokesman Sean McCormack was quoted over the weekend as saying Washington had been talking to South Africa and other Security Council members about how to "start a process that will bring an end to the tragedy that is unfolding in Zimbabwe".

Last week the US went as far as suggesting that Zimbabwe’s neighbours should close their borders.

Sadc and the AU have, however, shot down the calls for intervention saying President Mugabe remains key to any solution to problems facing Zimbabwe.

In June, Russia and China vetoed a proposed resolution to have Zimbabwe on the Security Council agenda and have the world body endorse the illegal sanctions that Britain, the United States, the European Union and their Western allies have imposed on Zimbabwe.

The resolution was proposed by the US and backed by eight other countries among them Burkina Faso and EU members.

However, South Africa, Libya and Vietnam joined Russia and China in voting against the resolution while Indonesia abstained.

Kenya opposed to military aggression on Zim

Herald Reporter

KENYA remains opposed to Western military aggression against Zimbabwe, the country’s ambassador to Zimbabwe, Mr John Abduba, has said.

In an interview last Friday at a reception to mark Kenya’s 45th independence anniversary, Mr Abduba said although he could not comment on statements made by the country’s opposition leader, Mr Raila Odinga, calling for an invasion of Zimbabwe, Kenya stood by the statement issued by its Foreign Affairs Ministry.

Kenyan Foreign Minister, Mr Moses Wetangula told a Press conference in Nairobi that Odinga’s calls for the deployment of African Union peacekeepers was ‘‘uncalled for’’ as Zimbabwe was not under invasion or armed rebellion. He said Kenya would stand by Sadc’s mediation and that AU statutes do not provide for intervention in sovereign states, adding that the AU did not have the mandate or its own reserve of troops for such intervention and would need to ask member states to "donate" troops.

The AU and Sadc have since dismissed the calls.

Mr Abduba said Kenya also supported Sadc and AU efforts to push for an inclusive government in Zimbabwe.

The ambassador also thanked the AU for helping Kenya overcome the difficulties it faced after last December’s election as the country was now enjoying peace and development.

"We are cognisant that the impasse in Zimbabwe will only be resolved by Zimbabweans with the help of Sadc and the AU. The problems in Zimbabwe do not warrant military intervention. Zimbabwe has cholera and that cannot be resolved by military intervention, but through aid.

"We are happy that we are celebrating the 45th anniversary of Kenya’s independence in peace despite the problems that rocked the country earlier in the year. Zimbabwe and the African community helped us achieve the peace and development that we are enjoying now. Kenyans are happy and the government of national unity is working," he said.

Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Cde Reuben Marumahoko said Zimbabwe was not worried by Odinga’s outbursts as they reflected his personal opinion and not the position of the Kenyan government.

"We will always be guided by the official statements from Kenya’s Foreign Affairs Ministry. Mr Odinga is not the head of government and we do not wish Kenya bad," he said."If those statements had come from President Mwai Kibaki, Zimbabwe would have been worried. The Kenyan government supports efforts to bring about a political settlement in the country," he said.

He said Zimbabwe was watching with keen interest the elections in Ghana, as they resembled those that took place in Zimbabwe earlier this year.

Ghana’s opposition won the parliamentary elections but there was no winner in the presidential race, necessitating a run-off set for the end of this month.

Cde Marumahoko said the Second Chimurenga had been greatly influenced by the Mau Mau in Kenya, hence Government would always cherish its relations with Kenya.

‘Botswana’s hands dirty’

By Mabasa Sasa

GOVERNMENT says it now has "compelling evidence" tying Botswana to the training of bandits believed to be linked to an alleged MDC-T plot to unconstitutionally unseat the Government.

The Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, Cde Patrick Chinamasa, yesterday said evidence collected established that Botswana had provided human and material resources for the training of the bandits.

He also warned Botswana’s President Seretse Khama Ian Khama that the route he had chosen would have dire consequences for the entire region.

The turn of events casts a shadow on whether or not an inclusive Government involving Zanu-PF, MDC-T and MDC will be formed following the gazetting of Constitutional Amendment Number 19 Bill on Saturday.

"You are aware that the last time the Sadc Organ on Politics, Defence and Security met in Harare, we lodged a complaint against Botswana. Botswana has availed its territory, material and logistical support to MDC-T for the recruitment and military training of youths for the eventual destabilisation of the country with a view to effecting illegal regime change.

"Compelling evidence has already been proffered and the matter is now in the hands of the (Sadc) Troika and it is not for us to say how the matter will proceed. The Troika is now in charge of the matter and we all await their next move.

"What evidence is there establishes that Botswana has rendered itself a surrogate of Western imperial powers, that it is acting contrary to its past role as a Frontline State, and that it has decided to be a destabilising factor in the region.

"My plea to Khama and his government is to think carefully about the irreversible harm they have been plotting to unleash on the region," Cde Chinamasa said.

He added: "It is for them to realise that they have put themselves on a course that is bound to bring a lot of suffering on Zimbabweans and the region, including the population of Botswana."

Cde Chinamasa would not be drawn into revealing the nature of the evidence gathered.

Botswana and MDC-T have denied the allegations but it appears the Sadc Troika was sufficiently persuaded by the Zimbabwe Government’s presentations to order a full investigation into the matter.

Cde Chinamasa, who is one of the ruling Zanu-PF’s negotiators in the Sadc-mediated inter-party talks, further accused MDC-T of negotiating in bad faith by taking part in the dialogue while "preparing for war".

"As far as we are concerned as Zanu-PF, we have done all we can to ensure peace and stability in the country which are prerequisites for economic recovery. MDC-T, on the other hand, is bent on foisting war on the country and the region.

"It has become evident that MDC-T is negotiating in bad faith and has engaged in dialogue as a ploy to string us along. They lack sincerity.

"We now have evidence that while they were talking peace they have been preparing for war and insurgency, as well as soliciting the West to invade our country on the pretext of things like cholera.

Since the cholera outbreak began in August, Britain and the United States along with several African askaris like Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga have called for an invasion of Zimbabwe, calls that have, however, been dismissed by the AU and Sadc.

"We can look our people in the eye and say ‘enough is enough’. Our backs are now to the wall and a day may soon come when each and every one of us may be called to defend our revolutionary gains and our sovereignty," he said.

Details of the training of bandits in Botswana remain under wraps but The Herald understands that former Zimbabwe Defence Forces personnel recruited for the escapade spilled the beans after gathering sufficient information from inside.

Sources have revealed that the plot was to train groups of bandits who would instigate instability that would give the West a pretext to get the United Nations Security Council leeway to authorise a military invasion of Zimbabwe.

The development has serious implications on the envisaged inclusive Government and Constitutional Amend-ment Number 19 Bill.

The Bill, if passed into law, would pave way for the formation of an inclusive Government bringing together Zanu-PF, MDC-T and the MDC.

Illegal regime change a messy job

By Dambudzo Mapuranga

THE thing about stupidity is that it is not discriminating.

It comes in all sizes, colours and shapes. In Shona there is a very interesting saying that puts into perspective several developments that have occurred this past week.

They say in Shona: "Mukasekerera benzi parufu rinotiza nechitunha."

Loosely translated, this means that entertaining a fool can have dire consequences, and in this case he will steal the corpse at a funeral.

Dire consequences are what Zimbabweans will get if certain fools keep on being entertained.

"Foreign troops should be prepared to intervene in Zimbabwe. If no troops are available, then the AU must allow the UN to send its forces into Harare with immediate effect to take over control of the country and ensure humanitarian assistance to the people dying of cholera."

This was Raila Odinga on December 7, 2008.

Odinga has all but removed the corpse from the coffin and he needs a huge dose of reality because he has lost the plot.

In fact, his actions highlight the problem with regime change puppets. A puppet has no original thought and will regurgitate whatever is fed to him.

I am sure there are people in Kenya who were pinching themselves in shock that they actually voted for this silly man.

Odinga seems to have an unhealthy attachment to violence.

His ascent to power came through a bloodbath that saw some 2 000 Kenyans butchered in cold blood as followers ravaged the country at his behest.

What is surreal is that suddenly, to the international media, he has become the voice of reason on the African continent.

How does Odinga, a man who has no say in Kenya’s foreign policy formulation, get to make such statements and receive widespread coverage when it’s apparent he speaks as leader of the Orange Democratic Movement?

This explains why Kenya’s Foreign Minister Moses Wetangula came out guns blazing the day after Odinga opened his mouth and inserted his foot into it and yet only regional media were present to listen to his sharp rebuke of Odinga.

It became clear from Wetangula’s statement that Odinga had misrepresented facts when claiming that Kenya wanted Zimbabwe to be invaded.

Instead, Odinga should have said: "The British, whom I owe this position of Prime Minister, want me to tell the world that I think Zimbabwe should be invaded and President Mugabe removed undemocratically, and I speak not as prime minister but leader of the ODM."

Not surprisingly, Wetangula’s statement did not make it on BBC or CNN because that would have left egg streaming down the American and British governments’ faces as the two have been claiming that African governments wanted military intervention in Zimbabwe. Three blind mice, see how they run!

Archbishops Ncube, Tutu and Sentamu have a lot in common. For one thing, in their respective churches they have been the first blacks to hold positions of power.

The first black Catholic Archbishop of Bulawayo, the first black Archbishop in the Church of England and the first black Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town sure have come a long way.

Unfortunately, these men have developed some complex that has seen them turn their back on their roots.

It seems that the not so pious ex-Archbishop Pius Ncube has emerged from the woodwork to the chagrin of the Vatican, which was quick to silence him.

How does one address an ex-archbishop?

Father Ncube, Mr Ncube, or Mr ex-Archbishop? Well, whatever he is calling himself these days, there is one thing that remains constant in relation to Zimbabwe when it comes to Ncube: his loathing of himself.

Asked in an interview with the London Times how he felt about the gag order the Vatican had placed on him, Ncube said: "I am very upset about it. I believe in speaking out for the people at a time of distress."

I will go with the Vatican on this one: it would be suicidal for the Holy Church to allow this disgraced pretender to be allowed to take any public moral stands.

This is a man who once told the entire world that he prayed for God to kill President Mugabe.

Who knows what will roll out of his mouth if he is given his one second of fame by the media?

The former archbishop’s sex-capades at church residences with women of various marital statuses is hardly the stuff that makes one a moral authority.

Hot on impious ex-Archbishop Ncube’s heels are Archbishops John Sentamu and Desmond Tutu who have joined Odinga and the West in calling for an invasion of Zimbabwe.

What is it with these so-called men of the cloth and violence?

Was Tutu pretending to be a rational man when he chaired the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission?

Did he present a façade that called for tolerance and respect for nature’s laws in order to influence the passion of the black South African who at that time was demanding justice for years of abuse at the hands of whites under apartheid?

If this is the case, then there is one question that must be answered.

Who is the real Tutu?

The man who talked of peace, tolerance and reconciliation has morphed into terminator. Was it all a façade? Did he preach reconciliation to his South African brothers and sisters in order to save the hides of white apartheid regime functionaries?

How does Tutu sleep at night?

He has no qualms calling for military intervention in Zimbabwe yet he is a Noble Peace prize winner. Tutu has failed to bring meaningful change to the Israeli-Palestinian question where he claims to be a mediator and yet he wants to remove an imagined speck in President Mugabe’s eye.

The log is in your eye, Tutu.

As for Sentamu, maybe someone will be kind enough to pour bleach on him and then maybe he can be truly British enough.

The problem with Uncle Toms is that they are like addicts; they have no idea that they have problems.

They suffer from a variation of the Stockholm Syndrome where they think they are on the same boat with their captors and yet they are just being used. The three archbishops have one master and he is the one that has given them the opportunity to be "powerful" religious leaders.

Why would three seemingly educated religious men continue to support a system that champions the abuse of people of colour for the benefit of a few white men?

A week before his enthronement, Sentamu spoke against multiculturalism saying that English people should reclaim their national identity.

He said that multiculturalism made it impossible for English people to showcase their rich history and its glories.

He also said that the British Empire and the English teachers and missionaries who worked in Africa made it possible for him to be where he is today.

Stockholm Syndrome indeed!

The brother needs to break the chains shackling him. The British Empire was evil and non-white people were treated like animals.

The legacy of the British Empire is not anything to write home about or wish for.

Zimbabweans are suffering today because they righted a British colonial wrong and are being punished by the West through, among other things, illegal sanctions.

Is this what Sentamu says the British should celebrate — the violation of black people’s rights?

And then comes Botswana

Botswana’s Foreign Affairs Minister, one Phandu Skelemani, was paraded in front of audiences across the globe by CNN and his vapid statements ended up being thrown back at him.

I saw something interesting on the CNN website a few days after his November 26, 2008 Hard Talk interview. It seems people who watched the interview did not buy into the whole "Botswana cares about the people of Zimbabwe and want to help them" nonsense Skelemani was selling.

One viewer pointed out that the Botswana government has no respect for human rights and was, in fact, violating the rights of the Basarwa (San) people whose land they stole and gave to a diamond mining company without due process.

Another viewer pointed out that Skelemani was not fit to be a minister because no leader would call for other countries to close their borders to Zimbabwe thereby ensuring that the people of Zimbabwe would have no access to goods that include medicines and food.

The Botswana government’s logic is just like that of the West that thinks that by saying sanctions are targeted on specific individuals in Zimbabwe, they can force Zimbabweans to forcibly remove the Government.

The term for this would, of course, be "regime change".

Still on Bostwana, it seems the opposition in that country is not happy with the way the unelected bachelor president Ian Khama is running things.

The Botswana Congress Party has stated that Khama is undermining Parliament and Cabinet by running the country through presidential directives.

Now is that democracy?

The BCP says Botswana is slowly turning into a military state were views critical of the president are considered sacrilegious.

The poor Batswana are in for it; with half of the top posts in government being occupied by former military men, it is only a matter of time before the government introduces drills that include early morning jogs, lights out, and lashings.

Remember the attempt to ban drinking alcohol on Sundays? And then we see that fellow called Morgan Richard Tsvangirai spending a lot of time in that "democracy" called Botswana.

What can he possibly discuss with such a junta?

Maybe he and Khama will be placing bets to see who between Tendai Biti and Skelemani will come up with the most ludicrous statement regarding Zimbabwe?

But, thankfully, voices of reason are plentiful.

The African Union dismissed as illogical the calls for military intervention in Zimbabwe. That means that with the exception of Botswana, Africa does not want military intervention in Zimbabwe.

The current Sadc chairman, Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete, issued a statement condemning the calls for military intervention made by Odinga and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

"Only dialogue between the Zimbabwean parties, supported by the AU and other regional actors, can restore peace and stability. We have a serious humanitarian situation in Zimbabwe. We have cholera. Do they (those leaders calling for intervention) think that we can eradicate cholera with guns?" he asked. South Africa’s Department of Foreign Affairs on December 9, 2008 held a media briefing on Zimbabwe where it stated that its position on Zimbabwe was quite clear.

Foreign Affairs Director General Dr Ntsaluda said: "With respect to Zimbabwe, two things, of course, occupy the minds of South Africa and Sadc — the first being the conclusion of the political negotiations to usher in the inclusive government; and the second is to deal with the humanitarian situation." So while Tsvangirai’s friends and advisors are calling for military intervention, the true friends of Zimbabwe are calling for the formation of the inclusive government

Negotiations will bring a peaceful, viable solution to Zimbabwe, and not violence. Unfortunately, Tsvangirai has chosen to live in Botswana and not be with his own people in Zimbabwe.

How can he know what the people want when he is not there to hear what they say?

Regime change looks good on paper, but in reality it is one hell of a messy job.

No comments: