Nduduzo Tshuma in Gwanda
PRESIDENT Mugabe yesterday said Zimbabwe remains in cordial relations with South African President Jacob Zuma and the African National Congress despite recent efforts by the opposition in the neighbouring country to oust him.
The South African leader survived a plot to overthrow him by the opposition through a no confidence motion. In a secret ballot poll conducted in the South African parliament, which has 400 seats, 198 members voted against the motion while 177 voted in favour with nine abstentions.
Addressing the sixth Presidential Youth Interface Rally at Pelandaba Stadium in Gwanda, Matabeleland South, President Mugabe said the ruling Zanu-PF remains close with fellow revolutionary parties with whom they fought side by side to dislodge colonialism.
Speaking about the historical richness of Matabeleland South, President Mugabe said Matobo District was home to the grave of the first Ndebele Kingdom’s ruler, King Mzilikazi whom he described as a pioneer of independence.
“And these are our pioneers of our Independence but the independence of course which gave us the opportunity of using it now as an instrument to help South Africa, Namibia before South Africa to help them gain their Independence. Lakhathesi we still relate to the South Africans. ANC and President Zuma, whatever the South Africans or some of them might say about him or against him, we just relate to him in a proper way,” said President Mugabe.
“He is the current President of the ANC and its with the ANC that we have for a long time had a partnership with and it is that which we continue to relate to with those we fought with and were with either in Zambia, Angola, South Africa remain our comrades in arms because we were in the same trenches with them so we our friendship doesn’t end because we have all won our Independence.”
President Mugabe said the friendship formed by revolutionary parties during the struggle for liberation continued in the post-independence era through sharing of ideas and the formation of bodies like the Sadc. Turning to the domestic political field, President Mugabe scoffed at efforts by opposition parties to form a coalition saying they would not match the strength of Zanu-PF.
He blasted the meddlesome politics of the United States, Britain and their Western allies who imposed illegal sanctions on Zimbabwe as part of their regime change agenda. President Mugabe praised Zanu-PF Youth Affairs Secretary, Cde Kudzanai Chipanga and the youths for organising the youth interface rallies which he said shows unity of purpose within the organ.
He said with his visionary leadership, Cde Chipanga and the Youth League had, through the oversubscribed youth interface rallies, achieved what the previous youth wings had managed to do.