Foreign Affairs minister Sibusiso Moyo has rebuked the United Kingdom (UK) for allegedly intruding in the internal affairs of Zimbabwe when the House of Lords tabled need to extend sanctions on the country.
On Tuesday, the UK Parliament tabled need to impose more sanctions on Zimbabwe to pressure President Emmerson Mnangagwa to end human rights abuses, gender based violence and corruption.
But in retaliation, Mnangagwa’s government through the foreign affairs ministry on Thursday issued a statement claiming the former colonial power was not well informed of the situation in Zimbabwe.
“We take note of the debate which took place in the British House of Lords on 27 October and, once again, express our surprise at the level of invasive interest in our internal affairs which persists in the hallowed halls of Westminster Palace.
“It is more than 40 years ago that the Union Flag was lowered and yet, it seems, our friends in London still regard Zimbabwe as part of their extended family – requiring constant supervision, correction and even punishment when, in their own assessment, we stray from the path they and others have chosen for us.
“Naturally, we are disappointed at the overally negative tone and tenor of the debate and by the uninformed quality of much of the commentary or observation made by those who spoke,” SB Moyo said.
He added that the “deliberate attempt to besmirch His Excellency the President, by way of innuendo, with the corruption and smuggling case involving Henrietta Rushwaya, is a new low, even for the noble Lords.
“The Government representative in the House echoed London’s now well-known refrain simply dismissing our progress on reform as “inadequate” and dredging-up the usual, invariably unsubstantiated allegations of human-rights abuses and a failure to act on corruption.
“We note, as deeply unfortunate, the implied threat of more sanctions from the UK and the assurance given to the Lords that such measures are currently under active consideration in London.”
On Sunday, the Zanu PF administration conducted a foiled Anti-Sanctions march in which the revolutionary party tried to pressure Western countries to lift sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe.
But the UK government, US and the European Union remained adamant that Mnangagwa had to institute reforms compounded by ending human rights abuses and corruption.