We won’t respond to Mugabe's jibe about President Khama - Botswana govt

2017-10-07 11:00
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe. (Themba Hadebe, AP)

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe. (Themba Hadebe, AP)

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Gaborone – Botswana has said it would not respond to President Robert Mugabe, due to his advanced age, after the veteran leader attacked President Ian Khama, accusing him of failing to support his country’s foreign affairs minister for the African Union Commission post, says a report

The southern African country’s foreign minister, Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi, was up against the current AUC chairperson Moussa Faki and two other contenders -Senegal’s Bathily Abdoulaye, special UN envoy for Central Africa, and Kenyan Foreign Minister Amina Mohamed.

Speaking at the South Africa-Zimbabwe Bi-National Commission this week, Mugabe said that Khama had failed to support Venson-Moitoi for the post, creating a negative impression among other leaders, reports NewsDay.

"We worked hard. They worked hard, sweated, they sweated, you sweated, we sweated, (but) one man didn’t sweat. He stayed at home and expected that wonders would happen, and they didn’t happen.

"We were very sorry, everybody just said: 'Aah, you. We have not seen your president here. He doesn’t attend our meetings and what would happen if we placed our organisation in your hands, in his hands? So sorry, lady'.

"She worked hard. She was very sorry to lose, we were sorry also, but we knew in advance that we were trying a very impossible one," Mugabe was quoted as saying. 

But, in a statement this week, according to the Voice of America, Botswana’s government said it had "taken note of the comments and regrets these inaccurate and unfortunate remarks".

It further insinuated that Mugabe’s advanced age was taking a toll on him, "as such, understands that allowances need to be made".

The two leaders have had frosty relations for some time now.

Among SADC leaders, the Botswana leader and the late Zambian leader Levy Mwanawasa have been, over the past few years, the only loud critics of their Zimbabwean counterpart. 

Read more on:    au  |  robert mugabe  |  levy mwanawasa  |  ian khama  |  botswana  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa

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