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SA is paying off debt to Bob

PERHAPS Cassandra can tell us just why exactly South Africa and President Thabo Mbeki owe us “big time” (“SA owes us”, Independent, June 18).

Helvetica, sans-serif”>The response will most likely be that South Africa owes us because we contributed to their democracy by slapping sanctions on apartheid South Africa. They owe us, we will most likely be told, because we stood up to the South Africa of old.

Since Cassandra is being emotional and not thinking logically, I will answer by stating that South Africa is paying off its debt of gratitude to Zimbabwe.

Here’s how: the man who was prime minister and then president through all the years of apartheid, the man who presided over Zimbabwe’s efforts to support black South Africa was none other than Robert Mugabe, the” “ogre” of Zimbabwe.

South Africa, quite logically, is paying Mugabe back for his support of their struggle.

The decision to support SA, even as our economy depended on apartheid’s infrastructure, was taken by Mugabe.

It was Mugabe and the same men running this country today who decided that.

When, and if it is payback time, SA will logically pay its dues to Mugabe. Simple, really.

In fact, we can even further point out the fact that South Africans went about the business of sorting out their mess, organising themselves through Cosatu. They got themselves onto the streets to face bullets from apartheid guns. They defied all petty racial laws until the National Party saw that it was fighting a losing battle.

South Africans appealed to the world to help them while they also made their own efforts.

Suppose Mbeki answers Morgan Tsvangirai’s call and switches off our electricity, what then?

The cowardly Zimbabweans will simply sit in darkness in their houses (if they have not fled to the UK like Cassandra) and will not come out onto the streets to topple Mugabe. They will sit in their homes and whinge. And what will Mugabe do?

Will he say: “Ah well, no electricity, no fuel! I had better resign!” Of course not!

He will switch on his generator. Then what? We sit in darkness for a year while Mugabe arranges some sort of deal with Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi or with Equatorial Guinea to get some fuel to Zimbabwe. What would we have achieved? Nothing.

Zimbabweans, as things stand, are like toothless bulldogs – all bark and no bite.

They write to the editor and shout at Mugabe: “Go now, resign”, but they are not willing to back their words with deeds.

Denford Magora,


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