Even though it is not total freedom, welcome back home Hopewell Chin’ono and Jacob Ngarivhume. This a matter of freedom of expression and freedom after expression, it really boggles the mind to see fellow media organization celebrating the muzzling of free expression.
Well, some were attaching the release of these two to the coming of the ANC delegation to Zimbabwe, like it is a goodwill gesture for show off to the visitors.
Cyril Ramaphosa has been under a lot of internal and external pressure to act on the crisis in the neighboring country.
Recently the South African President said his government will be sending a delegation to Zimbabwe.
“It was also agreed that the ANC must speak to all parties and stakeholders as well, and the NEC agreed that the International Relations Committee of the ANC must provide detailed reports on these two (Zimbabwe and Mozambique) matters at its next meeting, he said.
The fact that he said, the delegation will meet all parties and stakeholders likely brings a smile to the face of objectivity and neutrality. One would imagine a scenario where opposition political parties, civic society, and rights groups are given a chance to dialogue with this delegation.
Ramaphosa expressed the importance of getting a broad view of what is happening in Zimbabwe and his sentiment were as appealing as when he also announced the coming of the first delegation which ‘snubbed’ other actors in the country and only met President Mnangagwa and the ruling party who rubbished the existence of any crisis in Zimbabwe.
However, the soon expected ANC delegation to Zimbabwe is only likely to meet ZanuPF and its politburo as a party to party dialogue between the sisterly revolutionary parties.
“We have decided that we should also have party to party discussions. The secretary-general spoke about this and we now reinforced the need, the secretary-general will be finalizing the delegation that will be going to Zimbabwe in a few days to go and meet with Zimbabwe governing party ZanuPF,” Ramaphosa added.
This is crystal clear, an indication that the coming delegation will meet with ZanuPF for deliberations, and maybe ‘other stakeholders’ may have to hold their pen to paper.
Commenting on the issue, ZanuPF secretary for administration Dr.ObertMpofu said, “ZanuPF is optimistic that the visit will provide an opportunity for their ANC counterparts to be better acquainted with the genuine state of affairs in the country beyond the sinister propaganda being pushed by the country’s detractors.”
It will be judicious to have a neutral delegation, objective, and meets all stakeholders in the country to gather a clear understanding of the issues on the ground in Zimbabwe. Dialogue with actors must be extended over Polad to other political parties and civic society organizations in the country.
As what happened during the first visit, we hope the South African government is not making a meal of the diplomatic visit out of excitement. In a binocular vision, however, Zimbabwe should be strong enough to solve her problems. Thinking foreign intervention will bring too much of a difference is a far-fetched idea. The neighboring country is here to protect its interests too, which are being directly affected by the crisis in Zimbabwe.