Mogae said Mnangagwa or Mujuru cannot lead Zimbabwe

Former Botswana President Festus Mogae said one of the ways to improve the situation in Zimbabwe was to secure a safe and comfortable retirement for President Robert Mugabe but neither Vice-President Joice Mujuru nor Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa commanded the “fear or respect that Mugabe relies upon to lead”.

Mogae was speaking to United States ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice about developments in the region.

He also said the election of Jacob Zuma as South African President was just a change in personalities not in African National Congress policies.

 

Full cable:

 

 

Viewing cable 09USUNNEWYORK472, AMB. RICE MEETS WITH FORMER PRESIDENT OF BOTSWANA

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Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

09USUNNEWYORK472

2009-05-07 20:05

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

USUN New York

VZCZCXRO9105

PP RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHRN

DE RUCNDT #0472 1272005

ZNY CCCCC ZZH

P 072005Z MAY 09

FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK

TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 6495

INFO RUCNSAD/SADCC COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY 1387

RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA PRIORITY 3687

C O N F I D E N T I A L USUN NEW YORK 000472

 

SIPDIS

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/07/2019

TAGS: PREL AORC EAID KGHG KDEM US BC ZU UNGA

SUBJECT: AMB. RICE MEETS WITH FORMER PRESIDENT OF BOTSWANA

FESTUS MOGAE

 

Classified By: ECOSOC: M/C Robert Hagen for reasons 1.4(b) and (d)

 

1. (C) Summary - In a May 4 meeting between Ambassador Rice

and the former President of Botswana Festus Mogae, Ambassador

Rice and President Mogae discussed a range of issues

including climate change, recent elections in South Africa,

succession plans in Zimbabwe, and the strain of the financial

crisis in Africa. - End Summary

 

2. (C) Ambassador Rice began by congratulating President

Mogae on his recent appointment as a UN envoy for climate

change, to which President Mogae responded 'it is good to

have you people back in the White House'. President Mogae

then outlined details of a climate change plan for Africa,

stressing the importance of consensus building, mitigation,

and technology transfer. President Mogae said that an

Africa-specific climate change fund might become necessary if

climate change intensifies, and Ambassador Rice concurred,

adding that a small island fund might be equally appropriate.

 

3. (C) On South Africa, President Mogae said that he saw the

emergence of the ANC splinter party COPE as a 'blessing in

disguise', which would produce a more meaningful, robust form

of democratic governance in South Africa. When asked what

the United States might expect from recently elected South

African President Jacob Zuma, President Mogae said that he

foresaw a change in personalities, not in ANC policies.

President Mogae said that he expected a more 'open-minded'

South African government, with Zuma, unlike his predecessor,

set to oppose a number of Mugabe-backed initiatives in SADC.

President Mogae continued, saying that Mbeki's controversial

stance on HIV/AIDS was borne out of 'false pride', and that

Mbeki was deeply suspicious of perceived efforts on the part

of western governments to paint Africans as 'corrupt and

diseased' (as purportedly demonstrated in State Department

travel alerts), all of which led Mbeki's government to

grossly under report violence and AIDS statistics during his

administration.

 

4. (C) On Zimbabwe, President Mogae suggested that one way to

improve the current situation would be to secure a safe and

comfortable retirement for President Robert Mugabe.

Ambassador Rice replied that the U.S. would welcome a

peaceful transition, but was concerned about who might

succeed Mugabe prior to free and fair elections. President

Mogae agreed with this sentiment, saying that neither

Vice-President Joice Mujuru nor Housing Minister Emmerson

Mnangagwa (purported front-runners in the succession race)

command the fear or respect that Mugabe relies upon to lead.

 

 

5. (C) On Botswana, President Mogae said that he doesn't

foresee any short-term changes in policy under President

Khama, and that he expects relations between Botswana and the

U.S. to remain excellent. More broadly, President Mogae said

that Africa had high hopes (perhaps unrealistically high) for

the Obama Administration in Africa, and recommended a

continued and increased focus on PEPFAR, AGOA, and MCC.

Lastly President Mogae said that a strong 'moral imperative'

remains for western governments to dramatically increase ODA

flows to Africa, as Africans were not responsible for the

recent economic downturn, but are bearing a

disproportionately high share of its economic and social

costs.

Rice

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