DA challenges Zuma plans to grant Mugabe asylum

SOUTH Africa’s opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) has rejected President Jacob Zuma government’s plans to offer political asylum to cornered leader President Robert Mugabe, warning that any attempts to accommodate the Zanu PF leader in their country would be met with resistance.

By NQOBANI NDLOVU

This came amid reports that Mugabe, put under house arrest by the military last week, had offered to step down and warmed up to the idea of seeking refuge in South Africa.

DA, on Friday, said: “The DA firmly rejects the prospect of the South African government granting President Robert Mugabe access into the country on so-called ‘political asylum’. We are of the view that this would be a violation of South Africa law, and as such President Jacob Zuma must make a public statement rejecting such an outcome.”

“We are of the view that allowing Robert Mugabe into South Africa on political asylum, or ‘refugee status’ would be in contravention of the Refugees Act (130 of 1998) – the empowering legislation,” DA said in a statement.

The DA argued Mugabe should be made to face prosecution for human rights abuses in Zimbabwe.

“Robert Mugabe has, like many other leaders on the continent, turned from liberator to dictator, with human rights abuses and crimes against peace being committed under his watch. As such, he ought to be denied refugee status as per the law. As long as Mugabe would not face torture or death penalty in Zimbabwe, the South African government must exclude him from asylum,” DA said.

“It cannot be that under Jacob Zuma’s ANC, our nation’s borders are opened up to human rights violators like Robert Mugabe. This opposes the very spirit of our Constitution, and is an assault on the dignity of the millions of fellow Africans who have suffered under the reign of Robert Mugabe. South Africa’s role must be to stabilise the transitional government, ensure prosecution of those who have broken the law, and ensure that free and fair elections take place.

“We maintain that the only way forward for Zimbabwe is for fresh elections to be held immediately, and for Robert Mugabe to step down as President of Zimbabwe.”

On Saturday, tens of thousands of Zimbabweans across the political divide marched on the streets demanding Mugabe’s immediate resignation with the ruling Zanu PF party also joining the push for his ouster.

5 Comments

  1. So why have SA not prosecuted F.W. De Klerk and P.W. Botha not charged with crimes against humanity in SA. One is still alive De Klerk and Botha died in 2006 but never charged with the murders of thousands of SA. Yes Mugabe has done is dirt. But it seems to me all the former white leaders have all gotten a past. That slave mentality. Eat your own children but let your oppressors free.

    1. Blame that to the Truth and Reconciliations that allowed most of the criminals to be free. The Truth and Reconciliation is the one to be blamed not all SA. We have different views to that matter and moving forward is the key..Mugabe will be either coming to SA or staying in Zimbabwe its all up to him what he wants and for the safety of his family he will make the right decision for his family than himself..

  2. DA please shup up. Mugabe is our liberator noone denies that and he did some wrongs in the past but its not your business to tell us what to do with him. Ian Smith, Bortha and the likes of DE Clerk commited various murders and we never heard you saying anything

  3. DA is not asking anyone in Zim to do anything about RGM. They don’t want RGM to be granted refugee status in RSA if he does not stand trial in Zim. Why should he run away from the country his TV & Radio Stations always reported to be wonderful and bountiful. Ngavagare muno tione nhamo (yavakavaka) tese. If RGM is so great why does he need immunity? Yei?

  4. Zimbabwe used to be a prosperous country with tremendous potential, especially with its highly educated population. But what is the value of a degree if there are no jobs? Yes, Mugabe was one of the independence fighters but not the only one. But does that give him the right to plunder, torture, kill and violate the constitution? One good deed does not excuse the hundreds of ill deeds. Everyone agrees that under Mugabe, the economy has been destroyed to be one of the worst performers in the world. Sincerely hope that Zimbabwe can have freedom and be able to fulfil its potential to become a regional economic powerhouse.

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