|Clinton under fire over Zim Constitution utterances|
|Thursday, 09 August 2012 00:00|
coerce political parties to blindly endorse the draft Constitution.
This followed remarks by US Secretary of State Mrs Hillary Clinton in Cape Town yesterday that Washington would reward Zimbabwe if it held a “credible” referendum for the draft Constitution.
In a speech at Cape Town University, Mrs Clinton said the US would reward Zimbabwean leaders to pave the way toward free elections.
“Here in Africa, the international community has made it clear that the people of Zimbabwe deserve the right to have their voices and votes counted in a free and fair election,” she said.
She urged regional leaders, including Sadc mediator South African President Jacob Zuma to push for a recently “approved draft Constitution” to go to the vote that would allow new polls five years after the 2008 election.
“Now the same leaders can help accelerate progress for finalising and adopting that Constitution through a credible referendum and holding a free and fair election monitored by the international community,” said Mrs Clinton.
The US and its European Union allies renewed sanctions against President Mugabe some government officials from Zanu-PF and some companies.
In her sixth leg of a marathon African tour, Mrs Clinton called on South Africa to lead efforts at the United Nations human rights council to protect global human rights.
University of Zimbabwe International Relations lecturer, Dr Charity Manyeruke, said the US was trying to influence political processes in Zimbabwe.
“We are a sovereign country. When a country embarks on an exercise like a constitution making process, they are doing it for the benefit of their people and not for outsiders.”
Another analyst who preferred anonymity said it was wrong for the US to set conditions for Zimbabwe.
He said the US had realised that its continued support of the MDC-T was futile hence its shift.
“ Its Saul now on the road to Damascus,” said Cde Mutsvangwa who is former Zimbabwe Ambassador to China.