Defeated Mugabe refused to take calls from African leaders

mugabe_teamThe latest revelations from the WikiLeaks website show Robert Mugabe (Pictured), smarting from an election defeat to the MDC-T in 2008, was unwilling to take calls from most African leaders saying they are not his age-mates."

A leaked US diplomatic report from June 2008 quotes Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, telling this to U.S. assistant secretary for Africa, Jendayi Frazer.

President Museveni also said that Mugabe was embarrassing African liberation leaders by mismanaging the economy. “Museveni thought Zimbabwe’s faltering economy and Mugabe’s poor understanding of the private sector were at the root of Zimbabwe’s political problems. He said a discussion of the economy would provide an entry point to tell Mugabe that he has failed and is embarrassing liberation leaders, the report said.

The WikiLeaks documents have also shown that former South African President Nelson Mandela was reluctant to intervene in the political crisis engulfing Zimbabwe. Its reported as early as 2000 that the then opposition leader and MDC President, Morgan Tsvangirai, failed to get a firm commitment from Mandela to help resolve the rapidly deteriorating situation.

“Tsvangirai mentioned that on his last visit to South Africa he met with former President Mandela who still exerts great influence in South Africa, he stated and urged the leader to intervene in Zimbabwe. He did not receive a firm commitment from Mandela, however, and did not see (Thabo) Mbeki, the document revealed.

Another set of documents show that in 2007 a group of four exiled Zimbabwean businessmen supported a plan to remove Mugabe from power using a bloodless coup. Under the plan Mugabe would remain President for 3 years with a technocrat Prime Minister running the country. The businessmen felt Mugabes health, age and the dire economic situation offered a good window of opportunity for the plan. The MDC, under Tsvangirai, are alleged to have endorsed the idea.

South African President Thabo Mbekis brother, Moeletsi, is said to have suggested that United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and former Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir, could sell the idea to Mugabe.

To get Mugabe to accept the deal, Mugabe would remain President until 2010 with some power over the security apparatus, but the Prime Minister would run the economy and get the country back on its feet, the leaked US diplomatic report said.

Strangely the plan is similar to the current coalition government, where Mugabe as president appointed his ministers to security portfolios, while Tsvangirai had his way in appointing finance, labour and social welfare ministers.

Another memo talks about MDC plans for mass action to force Mugabe out in 2000. Tsvangirai met Susan Rice, then-president Bill Clinton’s assistant secretary for African affairs, at which he laid down their strategy. “The MDC understands the serious risks associated with mass action, Tsvangirai professed, and recognises that it is in the country’s best interest to avoid bloodshed. Tsvangirai believed the army wouldn’t hesitate to shoot a lot of people, the report revealed. Its thought there are close to 3000 of these US diplomatic cables as they are called, pertaining to Zimbabwe, and with the website releasing them gradually, more revelations are expected.

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