Zuma is wrong to let Mugabe off the hook
The Financial Times carries an editorial today about South African President Jacob Zuma’s visit to the UK next week. The FT says Zuma’s proposal that EU sanctions on the thugs who still share power in Zimbabwe is insufficient. On the contrary, it would be a dangerous mistake, and shows Zuma heading down the same route as his predecessor, Thabo Mbeki.
The FT says that progress has been made in Zimbabwe since the power sharing agreement began, and that’s true – in the cities. But the thuggery and violence continues in rural areas and this week, Farm workers’ union leader Gertrude Hambira has fled into hiding as her unions’ offices have been raided and her staff arrested. Their crime has been to report on the continuing violence and brutality on the formerly white-owned farms – violence and brutality which affects black farm workers most, and leaves them jobless and destitute.
Lifting sanctions at this point would be a slap in the face for ordinary working Zimbabweans and would embolden Mugabe’s thugs to step up the looting of the country’s natural resources which, since the MDC’s dollarisation of the economy stopped the ZANU thug at the top of the country’s central bank printing money, is the only way Mugabe’s cronies can continue to enrich themselves. The least we can do is signal our abhorrence and stop them travelling on foreign shopping sprees with their stolen money!