Mugabe gave away US$100,000 to former ambassador, Brigadier Hashim Mbita of Tanzania, as a thank-you for his contribution to the liberation war effort. Mugabe’s gesture is extravagant, for a president whose country faces a humanitarian crisis in Chingwizi and Matebeleland, where many depend on donor assistance.
If Mugabe genuinely felt Brigadier Mbita deserved payment then one wonders why the president took all of 34 years to offer compensation. Furthermore, Mbita assisted several other countries and none of them chipped in on Mugabe’s lavish gift. With the entire continent watching the Sadc opening, it was the perfect opportunity for Mugabe to buy popularity with his hundred thousand dollar thank-you.
Forever grandstanding, Mugabe spoke against Sadc’s dependency on external funding. ‘Our continued over-reliance on the generosity and goodwill of our cooperating partners tends to compromise our ownership and sustainability of our Sadc programs. How can we proudly claim Sadc to be our own organisation when close to 60% of our programmes are externally funded?’
The reason Mugabe wants sanctions lifted is so he can receive foreign financial assistance. Furthermore, Mugabe’s finance minister has routinely flown to China with a begging bowl and a pair of kneepads. Patrick Chinamasa is believed to have initially requested $27Billion (8 times the national budget).
Recently, there was news of a likely $10 billion package (2,5times our national budget as compared to Sadc’s 60% external funding) from China. This begs the question – if Zimbabwe relies on foreign aid, some of which is from our so-called ‘detractors’, why should Mugabe expect Sadc to be self reliant?Post published in: Analysis