BY SYDNEY KAWADZA
A multitude of Zanu PF supporters yesterday thronged the Robert Mugabe International Airport to welcome President Mnangagwa while breaking government’s Covid-19 restrictions which bar more than 100 people from meeting for any reason.
Government in July this year imposed a strict Level 4 Covid-19 national lockdown reactivating exemption mechanisms which were used during the first lockdown in 2020.
The lockdown was, however, later reviewed to Level 2 but restricted gatherings to a maximum of 100 people in an open space although the ruling Zanu PF yesterday bused thousands of supporters to welcome Mnangagwa who was attending the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Scotland.
Vice President Constantino Chiwenga, who is also the Health and Child Care minister and was also part of the welcoming party, has been reviewing and renewing the lockdown measures after every fortnight.
An excited Mnangagwa, the first Zimbabwean leader to visit the United Kingdom in more than two decades, told his supporters of his “diplomatic coup” while interacting with various world leaders.
Mnangagwa was welcomed in Scotland by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson who was receiving various Heads of State and Government as per tradition that included a photoshoot.
The President also had a chat with US President Joe Biden during a dinner gala claiming that the world’s most powerful leader had promised to discuss sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe for gross human rights violations.
Mnangagwa told his supporters about meeting Prince Charles, Prince Williams, the European Union president Charles Michael, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Secretary of State for the Holy See, Cardinal Pietro Parolin.
He said Zimbabwe would also benefit from billions of US dollars pledged by countries in the First World to help developing countries move from fossil energy to clean sources of energy.
“We were united as nations from the developing world, that is, Africa, Latin America and Asia, agreeing that the developed world used electricity from coal and produced gasses that are now affecting the atmosphere.
“The climate change, including the cyclones, is a result of the gases emitted during the industrial revolution and we agreed as Africa, Latin America and Asia, that the developed world – USA, Britain, France, German and others – should pay us so that we can build renewable energy sources.
“These countries from the developed world agreed to raise billions of United States dollars to help us move from using coal generators for electricity generation and move to hydro-electricity, solar and others.”
Mnangagwa also dismissed reports that there were demonstrations against his visit to the United Kingdom but instead parroted a low-key business conference held virtually with British investors in front of his officials.