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ZAPU savages Britain and EU; says sanctions designed to impose preferred Zanu PF leaders

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By Leopold Munhende l Chief Correspondent


OPPOSITION ZAPU president, Sibangilizwe Nkomo has said his party will not take an active role in calling for an end to the sanctions regime as this was a fight between those who founded Zanu PF, Britain, and the leadership of their ‘errant surrogates.’

Nkomo, whose decision to wade into the sanctions discussion came as Zanu PF protested them at the US embassy, said the restrictions had not been put by Britain and the European Union (EU) as a means to removing the ruling party from power but to reform it without it losing its political influence.

He accused Britain of involving itself in succession matters within Zanu PF, arguing it was evident they were not looking to unseat the party as has been alleged.

“Zapu has no doubt that the conflict between the European Union members and its partners are punitive measures imposed after a fallout between the founders and funders of Zanu PF and their errant surrogate,” said Nkomo.

“On the one hand, these ‘sanctions’ seek to ‘reform’, not remove Zanu PF from power as evidenced by their continued bilateral partnerships and involvement of these parties in the internal politics of Zanu PF, where they openly funded a military coup against Robert Mugabe.

“It is evidenced by their complete silence and conspiracy during the Gukurahundi genocide. If Zanu PF deserved any sanctions, they were supposed to be imposed in 1983 before over 20 000 of our people perished,” fumed Nkomo.

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Zimbabwe, under sanctions since the early 2000s, has blamed them for its poor economic performance despite America, Britain and the EU disputing and arguing only a ‘select few individuals’ were on their lists, hence had no impact on national trade.

Most Western countries have been accused by academics and ZAPU of conveniently remaining quiet as late President Robert Mugabe, then a darling, butchered civilians in the south-western part of the country.

Added Nkomo: “The biggest and real sanctions in Zimbabwe is Zanu PF and their corruption, incompetence and intolerance.

“These devastating sanctions regime was imposed on us when the British conspired to impose their Zanu PF surrogates on Zimbabweans in 1980. It is these sanctions the British and their partners should help remove.”

Up until 2008, ZAPU formed part of Zanu PF, having joined the two parties in a Unity Accord in 1987 as a means to stop the Gukurahundi genocide.

The revolutionary party, from whom Zanu PF split in 1963, left the union under the leadership of late, former Cabinet minister and wartime
intelligence supremo, Dumiso Dabengwa.

“By turning rogue, abusing human and property rights, abusing the Constitution and the right to vote, the regime invited these measures on themselves.

“It is lost on everybody that these sanctions are an incentive to reform and if these reforms are implemented, they should be removed,” said Nkomo.

America which has 73 individuals and 37 entities on its sanctions list; and the UK with five individuals and one entity, have argued that their restrictions will only be removed once there is freeing democratic space, respect for basic human rights and a sustained fight against corruption.