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IFP said Mbeki would never resolve the Zimbabwe crisis

South African President Thabo Mbeki was not likely to resolve the Zimbabwean crisis because President Robert Mugabe viewed him as his junior and would therefore not take any instructions from him, a member of the Inkatha Freedom party Moleeane Skosana told United States diplomats.

He saide said that the only possible solution for Zimbabwe was for the US to become involved in the matter and hoped that President-elect Obama would intervene.

Mbeki found the solution which resulted in the formation of the inclusive government that has been running the country since February 2009.

 

Full cable:


Viewing cable 08CAPETOWN227, CG DISCUSSES FOREIGN AFFAIRS WITH SAG MP SKOSANA

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Reference ID

Created

Classification

Origin

08CAPETOWN227

2008-11-14 14:03

UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY

Consulate Cape Town

VZCZCXRO1194

PP RUEHDU RUEHJO

DE RUEHTN #0227 3191403

ZNR UUUUU ZZH

P 141403Z NOV 08

FM AMCONSUL CAPE TOWN

TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 2875

INFO RUEHSA/AMEMBASSY PRETORIA 6234

RUEHJO/AMCONSUL JOHANNESBURG 2052

RUEHDU/AMCONSUL DURBAN 3189

UNCLAS CAPE TOWN 000227

 

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

 

E.O. 12958: N/A

TAGS: PGOV KDEM SF

SUBJECT: CG DISCUSSES FOREIGN AFFAIRS WITH SAG MP SKOSANA

 

1. (SBU) On November 12, 2008 the CG, PolOff and PolAsst met with

Moleeane Skosana, a member of the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP), and

one of three House Chairpersons of the National Assembly as well as

a member of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Foreign

Affairs. Mr. Skosana has had a long parliamentary career and has

been a member of parliament since 1994. In 1998 he was appointed

Minister of Correctional Services by President Mandela and continued

to serve in President Mbeki’s Cabinet until 2004. In 2007, Skosana

was appointed one of three House Chairpersons of the National

Assembly supporting the Speaker of Parliament.

 

 

2. (SBU) As a member of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on

Foreign Affairs, Skosana discussed some of the topics dealt with by

the Committee. Although Zimbabwe is a key issue that is discussed

within individual political parties, Skosana said it is not widely

discussed within the national government. He indicated that the SAG

is primarily concerned with upholding the international principles

of non-interference and sovereignty. He feels that one of the

reasons the SAG is soft on Zimbabwe is because it fears any

intervention will be opening the door for other African nations to

act in a similar manner against South Africa in the future should

the need arise. He continued by saying the only solution to the

Zimbabwe crises is to involve civil society in the matter.

 

3. (SBU) Mr. Skosana was also critical of the Southern African

Development Communities (SADC) appointment of Thabo Mbeki as sole

mediator in the Zimbabwe crisis. He felt mediation efforts should

have been undertaken by all SADC countries with a joint plan to deal

with Zimbabwe. He also stated that Mbeki was never going to be

successful in resolving the Zimbabwe crisis since Mugabe, the elder

statesman, views Mbeki as his junior and would, therefore, not take

instructions from him. One of the most important matters confronting

SADC is devising an acceptable exit strategy for Robert Mugabe and

his cabinet, but Skosana also felt that the only possible solution

for Zimbabwe is for the U.S. to become involved in the matter and

hopes that President-elect Obama will intervene in Zimbabwe. Mr.

Skosana also indicated that the SAG will not give aid to Zimbabwe

without stringent conditions being met.

 

4. (SBU) Skosana indicated that South Africa was working closely

with SADC to deploy more troops to the Democratic Republic of Congo.

He said the SAG feels a particular responsibility towards the DRC as

it initially brokered the peace deal in the region. Skosana also

mentioned that South Africa was relying on the African Union and the

United Nations to help resolve the situation in Sudan.

 

5. (SBU) When questioned about U.S.-SA relations, Skosana said he

feels relations with the U.S. will strengthen following the election

of President-elect Obama. He found it encouraging that Senator Obama

expressed a desire to engage leaders in Cuba, other Latin American

countries and the Middle East. Skosana said in the past SA-U.S.

relations on an international political level were shaped more by

the U.S. attitude to and treatment of other countries especially the

Middle East, than by its treatment of SA. The Portfolio Committee

on Foreign Affairs feels that the Bush Administration has done well

with regards to aid for Africa, in fact far better than the Clinton

Administration, but still feels that U.S. relations with the rest of

the world is the most important factor in furthering SA-U.S.

relations. Skosana hopes that President-elect Obama will have a

Qrelations. Skosana hopes that President-elect Obama will have a

greater willingness to listen to the opinions of and engage with

other nations on a more open level.

 

6. (SBU) Skosana said his party, the IFP, did not foresee any major

loss in membership as a result of the new political party, which has

broken away from the ruling ANC party. IFP members are mostly Zulu

and based in the Kwa-Zulu/Natal province, a traditional Inkhata

stronghold, and would, in all likelihood, remain that way. He said

the IFP would not form any coalition before the elections, but did

not rule out the possibility of a coalition with the new party after

the election.

 

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