HomeOpinion & AnalysisColumnistsSadc Summit – a tale of tails between legs

Sadc Summit – a tale of tails between legs


Whatever Zanu PF sought to celebrate in the outcome of the Sandton weekend summit is, unless the communiqué issued at the end of the meeting left out certain items, not visible in the document everybody else has received.

All essential elements covered by the Livingstone Troika Summit of March 31 have found their way into the Sunday night full summit communiqué and, if anything, political analysts says the Sandton resolutions were even more biting — if Zanu PF found the Livingstone meeting unfavourable of their position.

Livingstone expressed concern and “noted with disappointment insufficient progress thereof and expressed its impatience in the delay of the implementation of the GPA”.

Upon their return from Zambia, huffing and puffing, Zanu PF leaders spin doctors scoffed at the “alleged disappointment and impatience”, claiming progress in implementing the GPA was good.

Now, come Sunday evening, after seven Heads of State and another seven officials representing their countries issued another communiqué and made mention of the same GPA issue.

They not only pushed for speedy implementation, but called on the Troika to appoint people “as soon as possible” to work with Zimbabwe’s Jomic in the implementation of the GPA, and goes further to “mandate” the Sadc Secretariat to mobilise resources for Jomic!

The issue of elections, perhaps the hottest property on the Zanu PF portfolio, was also dealt with in South Africa in much the same manner, if not more firmly, as the Troika did in Livingstone.

While Livingstone talked about increasing polarisation of the political environment, seen through a resurgence of violence, arrests and intimidation, the South African meeting urged the creation of a conducive environment to the holding of “elections that will be free and fair, under conditions of a level political field”.

The Extraordinary Summit also urged President Robert Mugabe, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and leader of the smaller MDC formation, Welshman Ncube, to “finalise the roadmap with time lines as a matter of urgency”.

But there we were on Monday morning, Zanu PF doctors of spin were all over the State media claiming victory and stating, as a matter of fact, that the Livingstone Summit resolutions had been trashed!

The same spin doctors had been telling Zimbabweans there was nothing called a roadmap that was being drawn and that the only roadmap they were aware of was the existing GPA which, according to them, was as good as fulfilled and hence elections could be held within the next five months!

The tragedy of telling such plain lies is that technology has not evaded Zimbabwe and more than half of Zimbabwe’s literate population had the facts in their hands even as they read the ludicrous spin in the State media.

But come to think of it, Zanu PF, on account of its history and the respect that its leader, a Sadc founding father, could have received less battering and a more dignified nudge towards reason had its very same spin doctors who later expected what they ended up dreaming up, behaved themselves after the Livingstone Summit.

The fact is these guys, professors of politics or not, dealt President Mugabe a heavy and dirty blow.

They went, unprovoked, to lash out in insane language, at President Jacob Zuma, the facilitator of the Zimbabwean crisis, and later asked President Mugabe to go do some miracle, convince Sadc leaders and Zuma they are good boys that must be supported.

To make matters worse, the same Nutties took it upon themselves to be the advance party at the Sandton Summit whose outcome they want to pretend is in their favour, and they expect President Mugabe, Zanu PF and Zimbabweans to believe them!

Zanu PF should not continue allowing itself to be led into such mess by men that may have ideas other than they pretend to present.

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