As Zimbabwe’s historic chairmanship of the African Union is rapidly coming to an end, the influence and respect that President Mugabe and zanu-pf command on our beloved mother continent, makes our former colonial and slave masters sick to their stomach, because their comrades and friends were provided a rather unique opportunity to witness a dynamic play out that is very similar to the Holy Bible’s story of David and Goliath.
The timing of Zimbabwe’s chairmanship provided not only Mother Africa, but the entire planet an opportunity to learn firsthand about the objectives and merits of the 3rd Chimurenga’s land reclamation programme, while at the same time realising that this approach should be the ideological backbone behind a continent-wide approach to the AU’s previous theme of agriculture and food security.
Since US-EU imperialism has spent the first 16 years of the 21st century painting a picture that depicts President Mugabe and zanu-pf as Africa’s worst violators of human rights, the upcoming theme, “Year of Human Rights with particular focus on the rights of women”, will go a long way in providing not only Zimbabweans but Africans who stand shoulder to shoulder with them a platform to set the record straight once and for all.
This process can begin with the Chairperson of the African Union Commission Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma bringing a high level delegation to Zimbabwe, to confirm that 65 percent of the farming in the rural areas is being spearheaded by women, and also call for the AU to launch a special investigation on the impact US-EU sanctions are having on women, children and families in Zimbabwe.
The next step could be the AU doing a documentary on Zimbabwean women’s commitment to excellence in the area of agriculture and food security despite having to confront and overcome the hurdles that US-EU sanctions present to its leadership and every citizen on a daily basis.
The African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights for Africa came into effect on October 21st 1986 in Banjul, Gambia, exactly two days after the mysterious plane crash that took the life of one of Mother Africa’s bravest and brightest sons, Mozambique’s first President Samora Machel at this exact moment Africans at home and abroad were reflecting on the 3rd anniversary of US imperialism’s cowardly invasion of Grenada that resulted in the assassination of the Prime Minister Comrade Maurice Bishop.
For the leadership and people of Zimbabwe, Gambia represents a rather significant turn in US-EU imperialism’s obsession with bringing about a regime change in their country. It was exactly 10 years ago that the former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan informed the world that there was no international crisis in Zimbabwe but an unresolved bilateral dispute between a sovereign nation and its former colonial master.
The first articles that Zimbabweans in particular and Africans as a whole must examine are Article 8, Freedom of Expression, Article 11, Freedom of Movement, Article 12, Freedom to political participation, Article 19, Right to self-determination and Article 20, Freely dispose of their wealth and natural resources.
What has been irritating and outright dishonest is US-EU imperialism’s claim that there is no freedom of the press in Zimbabwe, the time has come to do a comparative analysis of media in Zimbabwe under President Mugabe and zanu-pf to African nations whose leaders had unconditional US-EU support, this would mean Zaire under Mobutu ,Cote D Ivoire under Houphouet Boigny, Central African Republic under Bokassa to name a few.
The end result of this exercise would reveal that Zimbabwe’s leadership and citizens are arguably the most tolerant people on the entire African continent of journalists, who consistently distort the image of its country and reality, especially those whose previous relationships with British-Rhodesian and US intelligence agencies are maintained to this very day.
Any opposition to President Mugabe and zanu-pf, whether its MDC, ZCTU or the 400 civil society groups on the payroll of the Open Society Initiative of Southern Africa or the National Democratic Institute or National Endowment for Democracy, along with new reactionary forces who are their philosophical offspring, has to be examined and analysed from the perspective of the following statutes from Article 29 of the AU’s charter.
The duty to preserve the harmonious development of the family, not to compromise the security of the state, to preserve and strengthen social and national solidarity, to preserve and strengthen national independence and the territorial integrity of one’s country and to contribute to its defence.
This leads us to review the American Convention on Human Rights also known as the pact of San Jose. According to their preamble, the purpose of this convention is “to consolidate in this hemisphere within the framework of democratic institutions a system of personal liberty and social justice based on the respect for the essential rights of man”.
The 15th article of this document states the following; “Any propaganda for war and advocacy for national, social or religious hatred that constitute lawless violence or to any similar action against any person on any grounds including those of race, colour, religion, language or national origin to be considered as offense or punishable by law.”
What the African Union is confronted with is if they consider US-EU sanctions on Zimbabwe diplomatic posturing or a declaration of war, aimed at bringing about regime change in an African nation that they have failed to generate support required to carry an all out bloodthirsty and genocidal military invasion.
We then can peruse the 1st Article of the European Convention of Human Rights which is the intellectual offspring of the English Bill of Rights, US Bill of Rights and the French Declaration of the Rights of Man, which deals with respecting rights, states the following “the obligation to secure convention rights extends to foreign territory such as occupied land which the state exercises effective control”.
This fascist and white supremacist logic overtly suggests that EU imperialism’s inalienable right to unlawfully involve itself in Zimbabwe’s affairs, because President Mugabe and zanu-pf dare to implement policies that will rid the country of the stench of British-Rhodesian colonialism once and for all.
The AU would eventually be forced to revisit the UN General Assembly resolution 260, better known as the Convention on the prevention and punishment of the crime of genocide, Article 2 which focuses on killing members of the group causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group
Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.
What our former colonial and slave masters fear more than anything else is African people’s ability to use documents written in the languages they brutally imposed on our fallen ancestors by force, for the purpose of magnifying their contradictions and exposing their atrocities committed against us past and present.
In the 9th chapter of his epic book, The Miseducation of the Negro, written in 1933, Dr Carter G Woodson reveals how whites ripped the US Bill of Rights and the US Constitution out of the textbooks that were scheduled to be sent to African children during the era of segregation inside US borders.
Because genuine African resistance past and present has always made US-EU imperialism’s worst nightmares come true, may the AU find the courage to declare US-EU sanctions on Zimbabwe a crime against humanity.
The time has come for African leaders to stop commending President Mugabe and zanu-pf for their vision and bravery privately, but at the same time distancing themselves publicly.
- Obi Egbuna Jnr is the US Correspondent to The Herald and the External Relations Officer of ZICUFA(Zimbabwe Cuba Friendship Association). His email is [email protected]