24 January 2018
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Mnangagwa off to Davos empty handed

Mozambique and Namibia next for Mnangagwa

13/01/2018 00:00:00
by Gilbert Nyambabvu (gilbert@newzimbabwe.com)
Regional diplomacy ... President Emmerson Mnangagwa with Angola's President Joao Lourenco on Friday
- says Mugabe safety, welfare guaranteed

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa will next visit Mozambique and Namibia as he continues a diplomatic offensive which appears aimed at sealing international endorsement of the power transfer in Harare.

Again, with his presidency derided by some as arising from a coup and therefore illegitimate, the regional shuttling could also be trained at ensuring ease-of-way for Mnangagwa at the African Union (AU) summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia beginning January 22.

The AU is sworn to act against unconstitutional power grabs in member states, but the continental group has not obliged ardent invitations by Mnangagwa critics to desigante his takeover a military coup.

And with principal 'coup' victim Robert Mugabe silent since his resignation after last November’s military revolt, the AU, the regional SADC group and essentially the rest of the international community have endorsed Mnangagwa’s succession.

The development has outraged loyalists of the fallen leader, chief among them former higher education minister professor Jonathan Moyo who retorted in a BBC interview this week that it’s not the international community which chooses Zimbabwe’s leaders.

Even so Mnangagwa has however not rested on his laurels, especially with the likes of Prof Moyo snipping from exile repeatedly about the illegitimacy of his government.

The new Zimbabwean leader has been engaged in a diplomatic charm offensive which started with regional power house South Africa where he spent two weeks in exile after being fired by Magabe as the Zanu PF succession war came to a head.

And on Friday he was in Angola, meeting President Joao Lourenco, who also recently replaced that country’s long-serving leader Eduardo dos Santos who had been in power since 1979.

From there the new Zimbabwean leader is scheduled to travel to Namibia on Monday and after that head east to Mozambique on Wednesday.

Namibian President Hage Geingob's office confirmed he would meet Mnangagwa on Monday.

"The visit is being conducted in the interest of further strengthening existing excellent bilateral relations between Namibia and Zimbabwe and considering new possible areas of cooperation," Geingob's office said.

Meanwhile, the Zimbabwean embassy in Mozambique also confirmed that Mnangagwa would be in Maputo on the 17th of January.


While in Angola, Mnangagwa said he briefed his counterpart about developments in Harare.

“It was an excellent meeting. I came to Luanda to brief my senior, President Lourenco, about the transition that has taken place in Zimbabwe,” he said.

“As you are aware, I first went to South Africa to brief the chairman of Sadc, President Jacob Zuma. President Lourenco is the chairman of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security, so he is the second person I wanted to brief about the transition in Zimbabwe.

“From here, we go to other Sadc countries to do the same.”

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