Two faces of ZANU-PF

Co-Home Affairs Minister Kembo Mohadi walked out of a meeting with then United States ambassador to Zimbabwe James McGee saying he did not want to be lectured on how Zimbabwe could succeed because he had fought throughout his life against the British, Americans and Australians.

McGee had told Mohadi and his partner Giles Mutsekwa at a meeting on 23 April 2009, barely two months after the formation of the inclusive government, that the West wanted to help Zimbabwe but Zimbabwe had to do more like stopping the continuing farm invasions.

Mohadi said Zimbabwe had embarked on the unfulfilled task of economic independence based on land and had subsequently been subjected to economic strangulation, including ZDERA.

He said in Zimbabwe, ownership of the land resided in the State. “If it was a sin for the State to decide the disposition of land, then ‘let us die’”, he said.

McGee said Mohadi’s stance was completely the opposite of Tourism Minister Walter Mzembi’s. Mzembi had acknowledged that Zimbabwe's "brand" had suffered and believed that most ZANU-PF ministers recognized the need for change though there were some hardliners who were resisting change. He proclaimed Mugabe a "change agent."

McGee said unfortunately, Mohadi was more representative of ZANU-PF in government than Mzembi.

“This will make progress more difficult. But it is significant that Mzembi has Mugabe's ear, and that there are a significant number of reformers in ZANU-PF. We continue to believe there will be fitful advances; we should not expect too much too soon."

 

Full cable:

 

Viewing cable 09HARARE340, TWO FACES OF ZANU-PF

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

09HARARE340

2009-04-23 16:00

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Harare

VZCZCXRO7518

OO RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHRN

DE RUEHSB #0340/01 1131600

ZNY CCCCC ZZH

O 231600Z APR 09

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4414

INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE

RUEHAR/AMEMBASSY ACCRA 2791

RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 2910

RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 1355

RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 2175

RUEHDK/AMEMBASSY DAKAR 2540

RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 2958

RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 5399

RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC

RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK

RHMFISS/EUCOM POLAD VAIHINGEN GE

RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC

RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 2084

RHEHAAA/NSC WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 HARARE 000340

 

SIPDIS

 

AF/S FOR B.WALCH

DRL FOR N. WILETT

ADDIS ABABA FOR USAU

ADDIS ABABA FOR ACSS

STATE PASS TO USAID FOR J. HARMON AND L. DOBBINS

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR MICHELLE GAVIN

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/23/2019

TAGS: PGOV PREL ASEC PHUM ZI

SUBJECT: TWO FACES OF ZANU-PF

 

Classified By: Ambassador James D. McGee for reason 1.4 (d)

 

-------

SUMMARY

-------

 

1. (C) A courtesy call by the Ambassador on Co-Ministers of

Home Affairs Giles Mutsekwa (MDC-T) and Kembo Mohadi

(ZANU-PF) on April 23 devolved into an anti-U.S. diatribe by

Mohadi who walked out of the meeting. This followed remarks

by the Ambassador that the U.S. wanted to help Zimbabwe, but

non-humanitarian assistance would be dependent on GOZ

progress; continuing violent farm invasions were not helpful.

Mutsekwa subsequently apologized on behalf of the Ministry

and expressed his desire for GOZ-U.S. cooperation. In an

earlier -- and pleasant -- meeting with Minister of Tourism

and Hospitality Walter Mzembi (ZANU-PF), Mzembi took on board

the Ambassador's points, pledged cooperation, and appealed

for technical assistance.     END SUMMARY.

 

-----------------------

Mutsekwa-Mohadi Meeting

-----------------------

 

2. (C) Mutsekwa and Mohadi were joined by the Permanent

Secretary, two other officials of the Ministry, and Ministry

of Foreign Affairs (MFA) U.S. desk officer. (NOTE: We

continue to schedule meetings with MDC ministers directly; if

they are accompanied by a permanent secretary or other aide,

it is by their choice. With the exception of Mzembi, ZANU-PF

ministers are routinely joined by a representative of the

MFA. END NOTE.)

 

3. (C) The Ambassador began by stating U.S. desire to help

Zimbabwe and its new government. This would require efforts

by the government to help itself, particularly in how it is

perceived in Washington and elsewhere. He noted that the

government had made progress, but the world was seeing

violent farm invasions as the face of Zimbabwe. He pointed

out that Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara, accompanied

by the two Home Affairs ministers and others, had visited a

farm on Saturday, possession of which was contested by Edna

Madzongwe (president of the Senate) and the Etheridge family.

An agreement had been reached for both parties to share

possession until the GOZ decided the issue. The Ambassador

related that on Monday, as the Etheridges tried to reenter

the farm, a confrontation had occurred and police shot three

farm workers, one of whom lost part of his leg. Further, one

of the Etheridge sons was under arrest. The Ambassador also

lamented that Congressional staff member Pearl-Alice Marsh,

who recently visited Zimbabwe after receiving a visa at the

airport, had been unable to obtain a visa at the Zimbabwean

Embassy in Washington.

 

4. (C) Mohadi preempted Mutsekwa, who was about to respond,

and began lecturing the Ambassador. Zimbabwe wanted the

international community to help it succeed, he said, but not

tell it how to succeed. Zimbabwe resented the bullying

tendency of the West. He continued that he had left Zimbabwe

at a young age to fight in the liberation struggle and had

received training in the USSR. His life was devoted to the

Qreceived training in the USSR. His life was devoted to the

continuing liberation struggle and he had lost his youth

fighting the British, U.S. and Australians. (COMMENT: We

have no idea where he might have fought Americans or

Australians, and did not have an opportunity to ask. END

COMMENT.)   In 1999, Zimbabwe had embarked on the

unfulfilled task of economic independence based on land (a

reference to the beginning of farm invasions). Zimbabwe was

subsequently subjected to economic strangulation, including

ZDERA. Mohadi added that in Zimbabwe, ownership of the land

resided in the State; if it was a sin for the State to decide

 

HARARE 00000340 002 OF 002

 

 

the disposition of land, then "let us die."

 

5. (C) Turning to the Etheridge case, Mohadi said he and

Mutsekwa had talked with the Commissioner General of Police

(Augustine Chihuri). Their understanding was that police had

fired in the air. It was unclear if and how injuries had

occurred. An investigation was continuing. The U.S. was not

there and it was presumptuous of us to assume that police

acted illegally.

 

6. (C) On the issue of visas, Mohadi said issuance would be

based on reciprocity. If the U.S. was not forthcoming with

visas for Zimbabweans, we could expect no assistance in

Washington.

 

7. (C) Having said his piece, Mohadi left the room.

 

8. (C) Mutsekwa apologized to the Ambassador on behalf of

the Ministry. He said Mohadi had expressed personal feelings

which did not represent the government. The policy of the

government was to open up and look ahead. He noted that

during the negotiations leading to the formation of the

government, there had been extremists on both sides (implying

this was also true of the current government) and it was

necessary to persevere. Since the formation of the

government, Mutsekwa emphasized, he and Mohadi had been able

to work collaboratively. He reiterated that Mohadi's remarks

were "unfortunate" and "uncalled for."

 

9. (C) Mutsekwa concurred with Mohadi that they had called

the Commissioner General of Police about the Etheridge

situation. The Commissioner General had promised to send an

investigative team. Mutsekwa was not aware one of the sons

was in detention. He promised to establish the truth.

 

10. (C) Mutsekwa concluded by stating that his ministry did

not have a sufficient budget to professionalize, equip, and

pay police. He understood that assistance was dependent in

part on demonstrating law and order; he pledged to work for

this.

 

--------------

Mzembi Meeting

--------------

 

11. (C) The Ambassador made essentially the same points with

Mzembi as he did with Mutsekwa and Mohadi. In contrast to

Mohadi, Mzembi acknowledged that Zimbabwe's "brand" had

suffered. He believed that most ZANU-PF ministers recognized

the need for change; acknowledging there were hardliners who

were resisting change, he proclaimed Mugabe a "change agent."

But despite the majority desiring progress, ZANU-PF

collectively, Mzembi argued, tended to be retrogressive. All

in all, he believed significant change would come.

 

12. (C) As with other ministers, Mzembi said his ministry

lacked capacity. He appealed for help.

 

-------

COMMENT

-------

 

13. (C) Unfortunately, Mohadi is more representative of

ZANU-PF in government than Mzembi. This will make progress

more difficult. But it is significant that Mzembi has

Mugabe's ear, and that there are a significant number of

reformers in ZANU-PF. We continue to believe there will be

fitful advances; we should not expect too much too soon. END

COMMENT.

 

MCGEE

Submit to FacebookSubmit to Google PlusSubmit to TwitterSubmit to LinkedIn

Add comment


Security code
Refresh