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Namibia secretary to cabinet said Mugabe had tremendous ego

Namibia’s Secretary to the Cabinet Franz Kapofi told a United States diplomat that President Robert Mugabe was “shrewd” and had tremendous ego, so Movement for Democratic Change leader Morgan Tsvangirai needed to recognise that ego and not fight over every ministry.

He was commenting after the stalemate between Mugabe and Tsvangirai following the signing of the Global Political Agreement that was supposed to pave way for an inclusive government.

Kapofi said Mugabe was not just a problem for Tsvangirai but he was difficult for the whole region.

Tsvangirai had to take what he got to get his foot into the door and then work to erode Mugabe’s power from within.

 

Full cable:

 

Viewing cable 08WINDHOEK336, NAMIBIA: ONE VIEW ON SADC ENGAGEMENT ON ZIMBABWE

If you are new to these pages, please read an introduction on the structure of a cable as well as how to discuss them with others. See also the FAQs

Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

08WINDHOEK336

2008-10-23 15:36

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Windhoek

VZCZCXRO2559

PP RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHRN

DE RUEHWD #0336 2971536

ZNY CCCCC ZZH

P 231536Z OCT 08

FM AMEMBASSY WINDHOEK

TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0127

INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L WINDHOEK 000336

 

SIPDIS

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/23/2018

TAGS: PREL ZI PGOV WA

SUBJECT: NAMIBIA: ONE VIEW ON SADC ENGAGEMENT ON ZIMBABWE

 

REF: STATE 112727

 

Classified By: Charge d’affaires, a.i. Matt Harrington;

reasons 1.4 (b) and (d)

 

1. (C) Charge d’affaires delivered reftel demarche to

Secretary to the Cabinet Franz Kapofi on October 23. Kapofi,

a senior advisor to President Hifikepunye Pohamba, explained

that he was not sure if Namibia would send a representative

to the SADC Politics, Defense and Security Organ Troika

Summit scheduled for October 27 in Harare. Kapofi noted that

President Pohamba will almost certainly not attend as he has

other commitments, and since the Harare meeting is not a

summit of SADC heads of state. (Note: Kapofi is the Namibian

government’s lead negotiator for Millennium Challenge Account

(MCA) program. He and the Charge discussed the status of the

ratification of the MCA Compact. That conversation will be

reported septel. End Note).

 

2. (C) Charge underscored the need for SADC engagement to

restart the Zimbabwe power-sharing talks between Robert

Mugabe and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change

(MDC) leader Morgan Tsvangirai. Charge stressed the need for

an expeditious solution that reflects the will of the

Zimbabwean people, noting the dire humanitarian crisis. He

emphasized to Kapofi the need for SADC members to press

Mugabe to cease unilateral actions that undermine the

September 15 agreement and to work in good faith to fully

implement the agreement.

 

3. (C) Kapofi responded that “President Mugabe is not just

difficult for Mr. Tsvangirai, but difficult for the whole

region.” He noted that Mugabe is “shrewd” and has a

“tremendous ego.” Kapofi remarked that Tsvangirai needs to

recognize Mugabe’s ego and not fight over every ministry. He

added that Tsvangirai should “take what he gets” to get his

foot in the door and then work to erode Mugabe’s power from

the inside.

 

4. (C) Comment: Kapofi was frank about Mugabe’s personal

shortcomings and about the challenges he poses for the entire

region. That said, Kapofi’s views of Mugabe are not widely

shared among ruling party officials. It does not appear

Namibia has been asked to participate in the Harare meeting,

and in any case, would be unlikely to bring pressure on the

Zimbabwean President. End Comment.

HARRINGTON

(32 VIEWS)

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