- Last Updated on 29 December 2011
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Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition strongly condemns African National Congress (ANC) secretary general Gwede Mantashe's offer on behalf of his party to assist Zanu PF with election strategies and messaging during the next elections. South Africa's president, Jacob Zuma, who is also the head of the ANC, is the SADC appointed facilitator of political negotiations between Zanu PF and the two Movement for Democratic Change formations under the Global Political Agreement framework; Mantashe's statement clearly undermines the critical neutrality and objectivity that South Africa should have in its mediation role in Zimbabwe.
We expect the ANC and government leadership in South Africa to support the people of Zimbabwe objectively without taking sides with Zanu PF, a party that has repeatedly used violence and intimidation to win elections while ignoring the fundamental principles of democracy including freedom of political choice. If the ANC wishes to support democratic elections in Zimbabwe then it should play that role within the Southern African Development Community (SADC) context by ensuring a close and long term monitoring and observation of Zimbabwe's elections by SADC representatives. South Africa should actively support the deployment of SADC peacekeepers to Zimbabwe to help prevent violence and keep the peace before, during and after elections.
We reiterate that Zimbabwe is not ready to hold credible, free and fair elections and that 2012 must not be a year of elections, but of critical democratic and electoral reforms. The ANC should not soil its otherwise good image by pledging friendship to Zanu PF, a party that is frustrating democratic reforms and is pushing for premature elections in the absence of reforms. We call upon the ANC to pledge its support to the people of Zimbabwe, and not to Zanu PF. The ANC must make it clear to Zimbabwe and the wider international community whether it has chosen to be an ally of democracy, good governance and human rights respect or has chosen to be on the side of dictatorship, repression, violence and Zanu PF.
Issued by: Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition
1. Thabani Nyoni, Spokesperson, Mobile: +263 772 779 880
2. Okay Machisa, Chairperson, Mobile: +263 772 903 386
3. McDonald Lewanika, Director, Mobile: +263 772127398
The Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition is a broad based civil society network of over 72 active members comprising churches, women's groups, social movements, residents associations, labour unions, human rights lawyers, and health professionals. It was formed in August of 2001; to focus on democracy, human rights, good governance and sustainable development issues - working locally, regionally and internationally.