‘African leaders will not heed Mugabe call’

AFRICAN leaders are unlikely to heed President Robert Mugabe’s planned pullout of the United Nations as that would spell doom to their fragile economies, local opposition parties and analysts have warned.

Addressing the 26th ordinary summit of the AU in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on Saturday, Mugabe threatened to lobby African countries to pull out of the UN in protest over the continent’s lack of representation in the UN Security Council (UNSC).

But opposition parties described Mugabe’s proposal as ill-advised and likely to attract few takers on the continent.

Currently only Britain, China, France, Russia and the US were UNSC permanent members where Mugabe was demanding at least two permanent seats for Africa.

Gutu added: “Of, course the UN Security Council must be reformed, but this can never be achieved by pulling out of this world body. Africa should simply ignore and laugh off Mugabe’s bizarre proposal of moving out of UN.”

People’s Democratic Party spokesperson Jacob Mafume said Mugabe’s proposal was laughable, while National Constitutional Assembly spokesperson Madock Chivasa argued pulling out of the UNSC would be disastrous as it would isolate Africa.

“This is a misguided position coming from someone who has isolated Zimbabwe from the international community and is now seeking to isolate the whole continent from the international community. Mugabe destroyed Zimbabwe’s economy and brought unprecedented misery and cannot claim what is good for the whole continent,” Chivasa said.

Renewal Democrats of Zimbabwe spokesperson Pishai Muchauraya also said: “Zimbabwe needs UN more than UN needs Zimbabwe. It is foolish and nonsensical that the dictator cries about reforming UN security structures yet he has been turning a deaf ear to similar calls for our security sector reforms. Pulling out of UN would be tragic as it would further isolate our fragile country whose economy is in the intensive care unit.”

MDC’s Kurauone Chihwayi said the suggestion was meant to intimidate the UNSC and protect African dictators.

Political analyst Takura Zhangazha added: “It might bring greater attention to the matter of UN Security Council reform, albeit temporarily, but no one African country would ever actually say they are no longer part of the United Nations,” Zhangazha said.

 

Another analyst Eldred Masunungure described the threat as an empty, naive and unrealistic one which would never find any takers.

NewsDay