Govt lies to AU court

BY OWN CORRESPONDENT BANJUL, Gambia  Zimbabwe is a democratic state, which upholds the rule of law and all fundamental freedoms; its Parliament, Executive and Judiciary compliment each others efforts in a beautiful manner for the good governance of the people. Evidence from Robert Mugabe's offic

ials to the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights meeting in Banjul Nov. 26 – Dec. 5 got even better. Land seized since 2000 has been “equitably” distributed among the landless black majority, ending a situation where a few white farmers owned vast tracts of “under-utilised and derelict prime land”. African NGOs, civil society organisations, human rights lawyers, and media watchdogs in Zimbabwe and South Africa, submitted a string of statements to the Commission deploring Zimbabwe’s authoritarian regime, the stifling of freedom of the press and of assembly, the collapse of the rule of law – and all the rest. In response, Mugabe’s officials pressed on ever deeper into Alices Wonderland. Oh yes, there was Operation Murambatsvina, condemned around the globe, including by a United Nations special envoy who saw the plight and suffering of some 700 000 people forcibly removed, many dumped to live in the open. Oh no. The operation, according to the submission from Harare, was embarked upon in the interest and welfare of the affected persons who at the time were leading a sub-human form of life. The international condemnation? Well, that was because the exercise “was hijacked by the country’s detractors.” But it’s all OK now. Thanks to Operation Garikai, many Zimbabweans with little, or indeed, no income are “proud owners” of houses which their government had constructed for them. The only hint in the state evidence that there could a slight problem came with a reference to Zimbabwe having “a number of challenges” which she is grappling with. These are all the fault of, guess who? Right first time. But Britain and its Western allies have failed miserably. And that’s not all. In due course, Zimbabwe will be right there to help any sister state threatened by the “ignominious appetite of the West.”. All Harare’s submission lacked was a postscript, perhaps starting, “If you believe this”

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