Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) ambassador to Zimbabwe, Mawampanga Mwana-Nanga has come under attack from the opposition after he was quoted by the State media, arguing that the government of Zimbabwe has granted citizens “too much freedom” to the extent some were now abusing it.
BY RICHARD CHIDZA
Mwana-Nanga said following the November fall of former President Robert Mugabe at the hands of a military intervention, the environment in Zimbabwe “is characterised by too much freedom”.
MDC-T secretary-general Douglas Mwonzora said the freedoms the country was enjoying were enshrined in the Constitution.
“We view this as an attempt to incite the Zimbabwean government into oppression. The comments are uncalled for and unfortunate,” Mwonzora said yesterday.
However, Mwana-Nanga insisted his assessment was spot-on and warned there were malcontents bent on causing havoc ahead of elections set for Monday.
“What I said was that with the new dispensation, the people of Zimbabwe are enjoying a lot of freedom and there are people who want to abuse that. I think that the people of Zimbabwe should stand up and manage this in a wise way so that next week we can all celebrate.
“You abuse this freedom and derail this process, I came from a country that has suffered violence and rebellion, we don’t want that to happen to this beautiful country,” Mwana-Nanga said.
Political analyst Maxwell Saungweme said Mwana-Nanga’s comments betrayed Mnangagwa’s plan in the post-election period.
“Like Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in Egypt, the junta (Mnangagwa’s government) gave us freedoms. But as was the case in Egypt, they will take it back if their rigged victory of July 30 is threatened by civil unrest. Mwana-Nanga is just stating the obvious. They don’t care about democracy in Zimbabwe, but stability,” Saungweme said.
Another analyst Sithembile Mpofu argued that Zimbabweans might find it difficult to appreciate the present because of the past.
“The traumas of the past tend to trigger fear in us that Zanu PF could revert to their old ways. It would not be strategic to revert to old ways because Zanu PF has seen where such behaviour has taken the country both politically and economically,” Mpofu said.