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This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.

Robert Mugabe & ZANU-PF

Endnote 19 ch 22

Thabo Mbeki and 'quiet diplomacy.'  In the run up to the March 2005 parliamentary elections, the ZAUN –PF government of Robert Mugabe intensified a campaign of intimidation and harassment of supporters of the opposition, the Movement for a Democratic Change (MDC). ZANU youth militias roamed the countryside, the independent media was closed down, and every instrument of state used to dictate the outcome of the election. Observers from the EU and the UK, in particular, were prohibited from observing the elections, widely condemned as being unfree and unfair, except by SA which found otherwise. The SA observer mission was led by Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana said the elections 'reflect the free will of the people of Zimbabwe. The political climate was conducive for elections to take place. The mission wishes to commend the political parties and the people of Zimbabwe for the conduct of these elections in general.'  The United States, Canada, Britain and the EU bluntly rejected any pretense that the elections were free and fair. See Southern African Report 8 April 2005

Post the election, which Mugabe 's party won handily, Mugabe implemented Operation Murambatsvina ( meaning 'clear the rubbish'), which involved the complete demolition of the townships surrounding Harare and other cities and forcing their residents into the countryside, supposedly to find their way back to the rural areas from which they or their forefathers had come. In July 2005, Kofi Annan send a special envoy, Anna Tibaijuka, to Zimbabwe to report on the state of conditions in the country as a result of the operation. After receiving her report in late July he issued a statement: It s a profoundly distressing report [he said], which confirms that Operation Murambatsvina has done a catastrophic injustice to as many as 700,000 of Zimbabwe's poorest citizens, through indiscriminate actions, carried out with disquieting indifference to human suffering. I call on the government to stop these forced evictions and demolitions immediately, and to ensure that those who orchestrated this ill-advised policy are held fully accountable for their actions…  In January 2006, the African Union's (AU's) Africa Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights (ACHPR) issued a report for tabling before the AU's meeting of heads of state. The ACHPR expressed concern about the 'continuing violation and the deterioration of the human rights situation in Zimbabwe, the lack of respect for the rule of law and the growing culture of impunity.'  It also expressed alarm at the 'number of internally displaced persons and the violations of individual and collective rights resulting from forced evictions being carried out by the government.' It found that the Mugabe government was in violation of the AU charter and the UN Declaration of Human Rights.  Business Day 5 January 2006.

In 2003, Mugabe sidestepped a critical report of the AU for enforcing repressive media laws as well as failing to guarantee the independence of the judiciary.

In March 2007 Mugabe unleashed ferocious attacks on his opponents. IN nthe course of one Morgan Tv nBy 2007 the situation in Zimbabwe had deteriorated to the point where

This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. Return to the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory site.