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Zimbabweans in UK protest at Zambian President’s visit – 6th June 2012 PDF Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 06 June 2012 19:43

Zimbabweans exiled in the UK staged two demonstrations on Wednesday against the visit to London of President Michael Sata of Zambia who is a guest at Jubilee celebrations for the Queen.

 

Zimbabwe Vigil Co-ordinator Dumi Tutani said ‘Sata is an unashamed supporter of Mugabe. His parroting “Pamberi ne Zanu PF (Forward with Zanu PF)” at last week’s SADC meeting was disgraceful.’

 

He was referring to a meeting of the Southern African Development Community in the Angolan capital Luanda which rejected Mugabe’s demand for early elections before reforms are made in accordance with the political agreement with the former opposition MDC in 2008.

 

The first demonstration took place at Marlborough House where the Queen attended a lunch for Commonwealth leaders. The demonstrators carried posters reading: ‘Zimbabweans protest at Zambian President’s support for Mugabe’, ‘Broom or bust’, ‘Sata loves Mugabe’, Sata – no interference in Zimbabwe’, ‘No to Mugabe, No to Sata’ and ‘No Satasfaction’.

 

The demonstrators then went on the Zambian High Commission to deliver the following letter for President Sata:

 

‘Dear President Sata

 

The Zimbabwe Vigil deplores your interference in the internal affairs of Zimbabwe.

 

Your repeated expression of support for Zanu PF and your slanderous denigration of the MDC make us wonder whether you are in the pocket of Robert Mugabe.

 

We hear that your parroting of “Pamberi ne Zanu PF (Forward with Zanu PF)” at last week’s SADC meeting even embarrassed Zanu PF (see: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/jun3a_2012.html - Fireworks at Angola Summit).

 

We are confident that your opinions do not reflect those of the vast majority of our brothers and sisters in Zambia for whom we have great respect.

 

We are surprised that you have seen fit to come to London considering the negative comments you have made about this country which gave you sanctuary as a platform sweeper at Victoria Station.  We have presented the High Commission with a new broom to hand on to you so that you can resume a profession for which you seem better equipped than your current one.

 

The Zimbabwe Vigil has been protesting outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London for the past 10 years in protest at human rights abuses at home which have forced us into exile (see: www.zimvigil.co.uk).’

 

Zambian diplomats refused to accept the letter which was attached to our gift of a broom and a bag of gems. So we posted the letter in a letterbox outside.

 

The Zambians asked why we were demonstrating outside their High Commission and they were asked in return why their President was supporting Mugabe.

 

Josephine Zhuga said ‘How many presidents have you had since 1980? We have only had Mugabe’.

 

Another demonstrator, Cephas Maswoswa, who performed an impromptu dance with the broom while sweeping the High Commission steps, said ‘Why are we in exile? Why are there no human rights in Zimbabwe?’

 

Others who engaged the Zambians, apart from Vigil co-ordinators Dumi and Rose Benton, included Louisa Musaerenge, Ellen Gonyora and Kelvin Kamupira.

 

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