Well, barely 24hours after Senator Shehu Sani claimed that African Presidents are afraid of President Donald Trump, except for the late Robert Mugabe, President Mnangagwa of Zimbabwe, seems to have taken up the challenge, as he took a swipe at Trump and the U.S Democracy. He did this when he was reacting to the attack on U.S Capitol building by Pro-Trump rioters, saying the United States no longer have the moral right to punish nations with sanction in the guise of upholding Democracy.
“Last year, President Trump extended painful economic sanctions placed on Zimbabwe, citing concerns about Zimbabwe’s democracy. Yesterday’s events showed that the U.S. has no moral right to punish another nation under the guise of upholding democracy. These sanctions must end,” the Zimbabwean President had said on Thursday.
While the likes of Senator Shehu Sani and others might say that the statement from President Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa, of Zimbabwe, is coming a little too late, since Trump is already counting days before he leaves the White House as President, it is good to note that at least, he seems to be the only African President as at the time of this report, that has spoken up against Trump and the incident at the Capitol Hill.
President Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa continued in his tweet on Thursday 7th January 2021, by congratulating President-elect Joe Biden on his confirmation by the US Congress as the winner of the Presidential election. He said:
“I’d like to again congratulate President-elect Joe Biden on his confirmation as the 46th President of the United States. Zimbabwe is, as it always has been, ready to work together as friends and partners with the U.S for the benefit of both our peoples,” he added.
The outgoing U.S President, Trump a few months ago ( in 2020), extended by one-year sanction against Zimbabwe, where he had said that the new government’s policies continue to pose an “unusual and extraordinary” threat to U.S. foreign policy.
“The actions and policies of these persons continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the foreign policy of the United States,” Trump said in a notice announcing the extension, adding: “I am continuing for (one) year the national emergency declared in Executive Order 13288.”
According to the report by Reuters then, the Trump administration officials had said the sanctions will remain until the government of President Emmerson Mnangagwa changes Zimbabwe’s laws restricting media freedom and allowing protests.
According to U.S. officials, there are 141 entities and individuals in Zimbabwe, including Mnangagwa and late Robert Mugabe, currently under U.S. sanction.
Mnangagwa has called for the sanctions to be lifted against the ZANU-PF ruling party, top military figures and some government-owned firms, which were imposed during Mugabe’s rule over what the United States said were human rights violations and undermining of the democratic process.