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African diplomats felt MDC was not qualified to take over

African diplomats felt that the Movement for Democratic Change was not qualified to take over the reins of power in the run-up to the 2002 presidential elections despite the political hankerings of the Zimbabwean people.

The United States embassy, however, said the MDC’s capacity to govern should in democratic terms be the business of Zimbabweans and no one else.

The embassy seemed to be raffled by reports that there was widespread acceptance by African diplomats of the ZANU-PF credo that the land issue -not the rule of law or the principle of popular sovereign will – was at the heart of the election campaign.

 

Full cable:


Viewing cable 02HARARE611, DESPITE BEHIND THE SCENES SCHEMES, A PAN-

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Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

02HARARE611

2002-03-07 15:00

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Harare

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

 

071500Z Mar 02

 

 

CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ3074

 

PAGE 01       HARARE 00611 01 OF 02 071508Z

ACTION AF-00

 

INFO LOG-00   NP-00   ACQ-00   CIAE-00 DODE-00 DOEE-00 WHA-00

SRPP-00 DS-00   EAP-00   VC-00   H-01     TEDE-00 INR-00

L-00     VCE-00   M-00     AC-01   NSAE-00 OMB-01   OPIC-01

PA-00   PC-01   PM-00   PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     SP-00

SSO-00   TRSE-00 USIE-00 R-00     PMB-00   DSCC-00 DRL-02

G-00     NFAT-00 SAS-00   SWCI-00   /007W

——————70EFD8 071508Z /38

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1127

INFO SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY

AMEMBASSY CANBERRA

AMEMBASSY OTTAWA

EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE

AMCONSUL CAPE TOWN

NSC WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 HARARE 000611

 

SIPDIS

 

STATE FOR AF, DAS BELLAMY; AND AF/S

 

CAPETOWN FOR A/S KANSTEINER

 

NSC FOR SENIOR DIRECTOR FRAZER

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 03/08/07

TAGS: PGOV PREL PREL ZI

SUBJECT: DESPITE BEHIND THE SCENES SCHEMES, A PAN-

AFRICAN ELECTION WHITEWASH UNLIKELY

 

REF: A) HARARE 591 B) HARARE 603

 

CLASSIFIED BY DCM REWHITEHEAD DUE TO 1.5 (B) AND (D).

 

1. (C) WE HAVE PICKED UP A NUMBER OF REPORTS THAT THERE

ARE MOVES AFOOT TO LINE UP AFRICAN ELECTION OBSERVATION

DELEGATIONS TO AGREE TO A COMMON POST-ELECTORAL

STATEMENT FAVORABLE TO ROBERT MUGABE. DEPUTY ELECTIONS

SUPERVISION COMMISSIONER’S NYIKAYARAMBA INVITATION TO

AFRICAN CHIEFS OF MISSION AND THE HEAD OF AFRICAN

ELECTION OBSERVATION DELEGATIONS TO A FOLLOW-UP MEETING

TO THE ESC PRE-ELECTION BRIEFING (REFTELS) TURNED OUT TO

BE AN INVITATION TO MEET WITH MDC LEADERSHIP, INCLUDING

MORGAN TSVANGIRAI.

 

2. (C) REPORTS ON THE MEETING FROM CONTACTS WITHIN THE

AFRICAN DIPLOMATIC COMMUNITY REVEAL THAT THERE ARE TWO

UNDERLYING CONCERNS AMONG MANY AFRICAN DELEGATES.

FIRST, THERE IS WIDESPREAD ACCEPTANCE OF THE ZANU-PF

CREDO THAT THE LAND ISSUE — NOT THE RULE OF LAW OR THE

PRINCIPLE OF POPULAR SOVEREIGN WILL — LIES AT THE HEART

OF THE ELECTION CAMPAIGN. SECONDLY, THERE IS A FEELING

THAT THE MDC MAY NOT BE QUALIFIED TO TAKE UP THE REINS

OF POWER, REGARDLESS OF THE POLITICAL HANKERINGS OF THE

ZIMBABWEAN PEOPLE.

 

3. (C) DUKE LEFHOKO, HEAD OF THE SADC-PF DELEGATION AND

THUS FAR THE STRAIGHTEST SHOOTER OF THE AFRICAN MISSION

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 03       HARARE 00611 01 OF 02 071508Z

HEADS, REPORTEDLY WARNED MDC BEFORE THE MEETING NOT TO

AGREE TO ANY CONDITIONS OFFERED BY THE AFRICAN GROUP.

IN FACT, THERE WAS REPORTEDLY A SUBSEQUENT ATTEMPT BY

CERTAIN DELEGATES TO GET TSVANGIRAI TO STATE THAT HE

WOULD ACCEPT THE ANNOUNCED OUTCOME, WHATEVER THIS MIGHT

BE, A POSITION THAT TSVANGIRAI WOULD NOT ACCEPT. TWO

ANC MEMBERS OF THE SOUTH AFRICAN DELEGATION PRESSED

TSVANGIRAI ON EXACTLY THE SAME POINT DURING A PUBLIC MDC

 

SIPDIS

BRIEFING EARLY LAST WEEK.

 

4. (C) THE NDI’S DENNIS KADEMA (PROTECT), WHO IS

ADVISING THE SADC-PF DELEGATION, INFORMED DCM ON MARCH 7

THAT THE AU IS TAKING A VERY STRONG PRO-MUGABE STANCE.

A WOMAN FROM THE AU DELEGATION MET WITH SADC-PF SYG

MUTUKWA AND LEFHOKO EARLY THIS WEEK AND STRONGLY PRESSED

THEM TO AGREE TO SIGNING ON TO A JOINT, ALL-AFRICAN POST

ELECTORAL STATEMENT FAVORABLE TO MUGABE. THEY REFUSED,

AND OTHER DELEGATIONS HAVE REPORTEDLY ALSO BALKED AT THE

NOTION.

 

5. (C) AFRICAN CONCERNS ABOUT LAND AND THE MDC’S

ABILITY TO GOVERN DO NOT APPEAR TO REFLECT AN ACCEPTANCE

OF ZANU-PF’S SLASH AND BURN APPROACH TO ELECTIONEERING.

THE NIGERIANS AND SOUTH AFRICANS HAVE BOTH TOLD US THAT

ZANU-PF VIOLENCE AND BLATANT DISREGARD FOR THE RULES IS

APPALLING. OTHER DELEGATIONS HAVE EXPRESSED SIMILAR

SENTIMENTS. THREE DELEGATES FROM GHANA — TWO MPS WHO

FORMERLY WERE IN OPPOSITION AND A WELL QUALIFIED

ELECTION COMMISSIONER — DESCRIBED TO THE AMBASSADOR

THEIR REPULSION AT THE WIDESPREAD VIOLENCE, PROCEDURAL

WEAKNESSES, AND GOZ MEDIA DISTORTION. HOWEVER, THEY

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 04       HARARE 00611 01 OF 02 071508Z

INSISTED THAT THEY ARE BOUND BY THE TERMS OF THEIR

INVITATION AND ARE UNABLE TO SPEAK OUT UNTIL AFTER THE

ELECTION IS DONE.

 

6. (C) COMMENT. WE DO NOT THINK THAT ATTEMPTS TO FORGE

A PAN-AFRICAN, PRO-MUGABE POSITION WILL PREVAIL DESPITE

QUESTIONS BY SOME DELEGATIONS ABOUT THE LAND ISSUE AND

THE MDC’S CAPACITY TO GOVERN (WHICH, WE NOTE, SHOULD IN

DEMOCRATIC TERMS BE THE BUSINESS OF THE ZIMBABWEANS AND

NO ONE ELSE). AS NOTED IN EARLIER REPORTS, A NUMBER OF

AFRICAN BILATERAL DELEGATIONS — AND CLEARLY THE AU —

HAVE NOT COME HERE TO FIND FAULT WITH A MUGABE VICTORY,

HOWEVER THIS MAY BE OBTAINED. HOWEVER, OUR

CONVERSATIONS WITH MEMBERS OF OTHER AFRICAN DELEGATIONS,

AND THE EXCELLENT PERFORMANCE OF SOME OF THEIR OBSERVERS

IN THE FIELD AS REPORTED BY OUR OBSERVER TEAMS, LEAD US

TO CONCLUDE THAT THERE WILL BE OTHER, MORE BALANCED

VOICES. IN THE EVENT OF AN ANNOUNCED MUGABE VICTORY,

THE FINAL PUBLIC POSITIONS OF THE NIGERIANS AND THE

SOUTH AFRICANS WILL BE CRUCIAL TO WHETHER OR NOT THE

AFRICANS AT LARGE RETREAT TO THE UNFORTUNATE “QUIET

DIPLOMACY” OF AFRICAN SOLIDARITY THAT HAS TOO FREQUENTLY

PREVAILED IN THE PAST. END COMMENT.

 

CONFIDENTIAL

 

CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ3075

 

PAGE 01       HARARE 00611 02 OF 02 071508Z

ACTION AF-00

 

INFO LOG-00   NP-00   ACQ-00   CIAE-00 DODE-00 DOEE-00 WHA-00

SRPP-00 DS-00   EAP-00   VC-00   H-01     TEDE-00 INR-00

L-00     VCE-00   M-00     AC-01   NSAE-00 OMB-01   OPIC-01

PA-00   PC-01   PM-00   PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     SP-00

SSO-00   TRSE-00 USIE-00 PMB-00  DSCC-00 DRL-02   G-00

NFAT-00 SAS-00   SWCI-00   /007W

——————70EFDC 071508Z /38

O 071500Z MAR 02

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1128

INFO SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY

AMEMBASSY CANBERRA

AMEMBASSY OTTAWA

EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE

AMCONSUL CAPE TOWN

NSC WASHDC

 

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 02 OF 02 HARARE 000611

 

SIPDIS

 

STATE FOR AF, DAS BELLAMY; AND AF/S

 

CAPETOWN FOR A/S KANSTEINER

 

NSC FOR SENIOR DIRECTOR FRAZER

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 03/08/07

TAGS: PGOV PREL PREL ZI

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 02       HARARE 00611 02 OF 02 071508Z

SUBJECT: DESPITE BEHIND THE SCENES SCHEMES, A PAN-

AFRICAN ELECTION WHITEWASH UNLIKELY

 

SULLIVAN

 

CONFIDENTIAL

 

>

(15 VIEWS)

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