….as he pays tribute to the former leader
President Emmerson Mnangagwa, whose government is under economic sanctions imposed by the West over human rights abuses, has called for their removal in honour of the late former president Robert Mugabe.
The European Union and the United States of America in 2002, during Mugabe’s tenure, slapped Zimbabwe with the sanctions, most of which were targeted.
America later extended the embargo after the incoming of the current Mnangagwa led administration for failing to implement reforms.
The Zanu P led government, which blames economic failure on sanctions, has unsuccessfully used every platform at its disposal to call for their lifting.
Addressing mourners during the late former leader’s state funeral service in Harare Saturday, President Mnangagwa appealed for the lifting of the sanctions as a tribute to Mugabe.
Several leaders and their representatives from Africa and beyond were present at the funeral service, held at the giant National Sports Stadium.
“May the world honour the late comrade Gabriel by making sure that the sanctions on Zimbabwe are immediately removed,” said Mnangagwa.
He also paid tribute to Mugabe, saying the country was mourning the loss of a “ great son of the soil, a visionary and champion of our empowerment.”
The president said the troubled Southern African country deserved a new start, adding Zimbabwe remained open to international engagements aimed at improving lives of many suffering Zimbabweans.
Mnangagwa appealed: “Remove sanctions now; we do not deserve them.”
Ironically, nothing has changed much in areas of good governance, rule of law and respect for human rights in Zimbabwe since Mnangagwa came into office nearly two years ago.
Some political analysts have even described Mnangagwa as more ruthless than Mugabe, who was at the helm of Zimbabwe until the military dethroned him in November 2017.
Mnangagwa however said his government was committed to advancing democracy in the country, adding Zimbabwe’s future success built on the foundation laid by Mugabe was inevitable.
“As we mourn our revolutionary icon, we call for the unconditional and immediate lifting of the sanctions on us,” said Mnangagwa.
He paid tribute to the regional bloc, Southern African Development Community (SADC) for setting aside October 25, 2019, as the day for campaigning for the removal of sanctions imposed on the country.