13 June 2019

Zimbabwe: Envoy Urges Zim to Pursue Dialogue

Abuja — Zimbabwe should emulate Nigeria whose citizens managed to find each other and resolve their domestic problems through dialogue for the country to focus on economic development, Harare's Ambassador to Abuja Mr Lovemore Mazemo has said.

He said there was need to take heed of President Mnangagwa's call to rise above parochial political differences and focus on addressing challenges collectively that would inevitably turn around the fortunes of the country.

Mr Mazemo said this at Eagle Square in Abuja, on the sidelines of Nigeria's Democracy Day which marked the beginning of civilian rule in 1999 in the West African country after decades of successive military governments.

Zimbabwe was represented by Vice President Kembo Mohadi at the function, who joined several Heads of State and Government and representatives, to be with Nigerians led by President Muhammadu Buhari.

President Buhari delivered a keynote address where he called Nigerians to remain united, as unity consolidated nation-building efforts underpinned by economic development.

"We see here an example of a country addressing their own domestic issues, understanding one another, engaging in dialogue in terms of governance to achieve political cohesion," said Mr Mazemo.

"Above all, the unity manifests itself in a way they are now addressing economic issues.

"It underlines what our leader, His Excellency President Mnangagwa has said about the importance of dialogue, that it is pertinent to consider national issues regardless of political or other inclinations or allegiance."

Mr Mazemo said Nigeria picked up the pieces arising from the procrastinated turmoil brought about as a result of military rule and found common ground when it eventually attained civilian rule in 1999.

"So, there is a good example to learn here, we are able to address our own issues separating political issues ahead of national issues," he said.

President Mnangagwa has since engaged presidential election candidates that participated in the July 31, 2018 harmonised elections, but MDC-Alliance leader Mr Nelson Chamisa has refused to come to the table, claiming that the polls were not free and fair.

This is despite the fact that several national and international organisations such as Sadc, African Union, Comesa and other countries gave the elections a clean bill of health.

In his speech yesterday, President Buhari proposed to name Abuja Stadium after the late Chief Abiola in honour of his fight for democracy.

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