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Diaspora should press for Mugabe to accept change

THABO Mbeki has for too long vaccilated on Zimbabwe’s crisis. In fact, his party’s spokespersons have given Zanu PF sufficient ammunition to continue being intransigent.

-serif”>This has not helped the millions of Zimbabweans who face tremendous hardships under the most savage conditions forced on us by President Robert Mugabe who has alone mismanaged our country to unprecedented levels. Zimbabweans deserve better than this.

Mbeki’s regime seems to be playing down the seriousness of the current situation which gets worse every day. Does he not remember his own country’s history, or is he merely deluding himself? Has he forgotten that it was external pressure that forced the apartheid regime to change its course?

The South African nationalist movement in which Mbeki featured most prominently had the good fortune of not having to deal with a type of leadership like the one we have in Zimbabwe.

They had the much-detested National Party to deal with, but fortunately for them that party’s initial intransigence gave way to external pressures, a rigid system which FW de Klerk foresaw as suicidal.

He acted quickly to defuse a potentially dangerous situation. Despite the many obstacles, given the nature of the racist politics, he abruptly reversed that country’s inhumane system of apartheid. At least the South African blacks were dealing with a man of vision who saw the writing on the wall.

Is Mbeki too blind or naive to realise that the person he is dealing with in Zimbabwe does not have the moral qualities or calibre of De Klerk?

After so many years of his so-called silent diplomacy, there is no realisation of any change of heart in Mugabe. This modern dictator still presides over our lives, forcing himself on us and causing pain and a lot of hardships.

I personally do not hold much hope that Sadc – or for that matter the African Union – will come to our rescue. Most of the continent’s leadership we know are inherently corrupt.

We Zimbabweans, I am afraid to say, find ourselves in a very precarious situation at home. We are not even allowed to express our opinions as we are not free yet. We have never been free, our destiny has been taken away first by the whites and now by Zanu PF.

Many a Zimbabwean is now living in exile while hundreds of thousands of our educated compatriots are being deprived of a meaningful contribution to the long-term good of our country.

Certain critics back home may have contrary views and question our loyalty but deep in our hearts we know exactly who we are. I for example, although I live in more conducive conditions in the USA, I nevertheless wish that my country would change for the good of all our people.

Zimbabweans living in the West can play a useful role. We can get our host governments to put increased pressure on South Africa and Sadc to act more decisively on getting Robert Mugabe to accept legitimate democratic change which restores basic human rights which every Zimbabwean yearns for, but to this day remains a mere mirage.

Zimbabwean Exile,

California, USA.

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