Southern Africa: Chamisa Pleads With SADC to Help Troubled Zimbabwe

MDC leader Nelson Chamisa (file photo).
29 September 2019

MDC leader Nelson Chamisa has appealed to SADC to help Zimbabwe emerge out of a recurrent political and economic crisis under the Zanu PF led government.

He was addressing thousands of party faithful who thronged Rufaro Stadium in Harare for Saturday's MDC 20th anniversary celebrations.

"SADC, you must listen because if you do not resolve this issue, it will haunt you.

"The likes of South Africa and Botswana, correct the Zimbabwean issues; help us help ourselves," said the country's main opposition chief.

Zimbabwe is in the throes of a deepening economic and political crisis that is threatening to take the country back to the 2008 hyper-inflationary situation.

In the midst of the 2008 crisis and political tensions between late former President Robert Mugabe and bitter rival, Morgan Tsvangirai (also late) of MDC, South Africa was tasked by SADC to mediate between the rivals in what led to the formation of the now defunct unity government of 2009-13.

Nothing seems to have changed under the new Emmerson Mnangagwa administration as prices of goods and services keep spiralling while the cornered leader has unleashed violence on critics amid growing uncertainty over the country's security situation.

In the midst of the crisis, Chamisa called on the region to exercise its neighbourly obligations to help troubled Zimbabwe emerge from its myriad problems.

Said the MDC leader, "Support us, we don't want anything. We want solidarity and I want to thank those who stood with us through and supported us with solidarity across the world.

"Thank you the International community, European Union, United States of America, Africa, SADC for standing with the nation of Zimbabwe.

"You must know that if you don't address this ill Zimbabwe, you will catch flu very soon. There will be illness in SADC, if SADC continues with an unstable Zimbabwe. It is a burden. So that issue must be resolved."

Unlike his predecessor, Tsvangirai, Chamisa has found it difficult to flag down SADC leaders who have stood by Mnangagwa while condemning Zimbabwe's opposition for allegedly inviting western imposed sanctions against their own country.

However, apart from the moral support they show to the Zanu PF led administration, SADC countries have not been too keen to render material support to their troubled neighbour.

Last week, prominent Harare businessman and preacher Shingi Munyeza said SADC has given up on Zimbabwe, saying the country should soon stand up and find its feet in the wake of the crisis.

"... The region and the world have given up on us. The region, including those we call our friends, have thrown in the towel," Munyeza told delegates at a Harare conference that was convened by a local NGO.

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