South Africa urged to act on Zimbabwe unrest
South Africa’s northern neighbour is beset by violent protests over the worsening economic crisis.
Stevens Mokgalapa, DA Shadow Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, said the situation in Zimbabwe appears to be the result of a shortage of resources such as food and cash as well as dissatisfaction with the administration of President Robert Mugabe.
“We call on President Zuma – as a leader in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region – and the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoane-Mashabane, to break their silence and condemn the atrocities currently being carried out in Zimbabwe.”
Mokgalapa said the “quiet diplomacy” of the past could not be allowed to repeat lest human rights violations persisted.
South Africa has previously come under criticism for its diplomacy on Zimbabwe.
Mokgalapa said the situation in Zimbabwe should serve as a wakeup call for the South African Government that without sound economic policies and a caring government the people would suffer and their dissatisfaction would boil over.
“Zimbabwe, like many other African nations, helped South Africa in its fight for freedom and democracy. We have a duty to ensure that Zimbabwe finds legitimate freedom and democracy,” added Mokgalapa.
Government had not commented on the protests in Zimbabwe but earlier this week said it was engaging Zimbabwean authorities to prevent disruptions at the Beitbridge border post.
The border has also seen some protests by Zimbabweans after their country restricted imports from South Africa.
“Zimbabwe remains one of our strategic partners in the region. We would continue to engage Zimbabwe in pursuit of an amicable solution, because this does not only affect South Africa but several other countries that use Beitbridge,” Nkoana-Mashabane was quoted as saying.
– CAJ News
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