ZIMBABWEANS living in the United States say they hope the election of Republican Party maverick Donald Trump as president of the world’s sole superpower — which created a cloud of uncertainty around the world — could quicken President Robert Mugabe’s endgame.
Elias Mambo in New York, US
Trump, a right-winger who threw into disarray the predictions of mainstream media and pollsters, was on Tuesday elected into office in a shock election after outpolling Democratic Party hopeful and former secretary of state Hillary Clinton. The Zimbabwean government immediately responded to his election and said it was ready to work with the real estate tycoon.
Trump’s election was greated with uncertainty and mixed reactions in the US and around the world.
Zimbabweans based in the US welcomed the election result despite hardline stances by the Republican leader during his campaign trail where he threatened to deport all illegal immigrants whom he accused of bringing down America.
Political science lecturer Chipo Dendere said Trump’s victory is good for Zimbabwe despite the widespread outrage over the election both in the US and beyond.
“Trump is going to be a tough leader whose foreign policy will aim to deal with despots and dictators who have overstayed (their welcome),” Dendere said in an interview with the Zimbabwe Independent a day after Trump’s victory. “It is clear that he does not have support of those who perpetrate human rights abuses because during his campaign he warned of stern action against such leaders.”
Dendere also said Trump’s victory is also a wake-up call to the opposition in Zimbabwe that if they do not live up to the expectations of the people then new leaders will emerge.
“It is a warning to the opposition leaders that it is time to re-strategise in order to win elections. Trump had a message which resonated with the majority of Americans. His campaign resulted in over a million new voters registering to vote,” she said.
However, Zimbabwe’s opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) US provincial organising secretary, Muzi Ncube, said US foreign policy on Zimbabwe was unlikely to change after Trump’s election.
“He will be guided by the constitution so there is nothing that he (Trump) can do alone,” Ncube said. “If there was a person who could have changed Africa, it is the outgoing President Barack Obama. Obama has links with Africans, but because the constitution did not allow him to do anything, America’s foreign policy never changed.”
Trump made history on Tuesday and sent shockwaves around the world after winning the US presidential election.
Trump stunned the world, including the Americans, after being elected the first non-politically-connected 45th president-elect in a crucial election, defeating favourite Clinton.
In one of the longest election campaigns in the history of American polls, which ran for 600 days, Trump polled 275 votes to win the presidency after he took control of crucial swing states of Florida, North Carolina and Ohio.
However, during his campaign, Trump warned that immigrants were flooding the US. Twice, Trump told audiences at rallies that electing Clinton risked a truly spectacular shift in the composition of the US.
Meanwhile, Information minister Chris Mushohwe has said Harare hopes that the election of Trump to the White House could improve bilateral relations.
“We have never had any issues with the US even though the previous government was backing the United Kingdom on the land issue. The president-elect has promised to work with any government and, as Zimbabwe, we are ready to do so,” Mushohwe said.