President fires salvo at NGOs
Fidelis Munyoro Senior Writer
President Mugabe yesterday savaged Western-sponsored non-governmental organisations for their open campaigns to subvert African economies in pursuit of regime change.
The Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces urged African States to unite to resist the machinations of the West.
“There is a vicious and comprehensive national drive as well as regional and continental vicious campaign to subvert our economies, economies of Africa through a proliferation of what I call NGOs,” said President Mugabe.
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“In Africa, this is all over. There is no country without NGOs supported from outside.”
He made the remarks at the National Defence College where he was guest of honour at the presentation of a National Security Policy and Strategy paper by participants in the Course 4-2015.
The participants are drawn from across security institutions here and allied countries including Botswana, Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania, Nigeria, Namibia and Zambia.
The NGOs, said President Mugabe, had become the West’s weapon to subvert African economies.
He said when he was AU chairman, he visited several African countries where he was appraised of the phenomenal proliferation of NGOs with sinister motives of regime change.
“They (NGOs) have become pests on our continent,” said the President.
These agents of external forces, he said, were also visible in the country’s opposition Press, which he said was leading the attack on Government on a daily basis.
“We know it is sponsored from outside and there is a drive and campaign, for a long time, for regime change,” he said.
“This can be handled by the State which has its own (legal) instruments at Government level.”
President Mugabe also said Francophone countries were still reeling under the bondage of their former coloniser who dictates the affairs of their countries.
He cited examples of African countries that were dissuaded by France from coming to officiate at the annual Harare Agricultural Show.
He said they were told not to come to Zimbabwe.
“That is a form of instrument that the West is still using to undermine our independence and socio-economy,” he said.
President Mugabe bemoaned the rush by many students at university level for business subjects while shunning sciences.
He said Bindura University of Science Education was established to cater for Science and Mathematics, but ended up taking students for business studies.
“Science and Mathematics is what it was established for, but the disease of business studies also afflicted them,” he said.
The President queried why the country’s state universities were negating the call to look at the country’s socio-economic challenges.
“Look at the needs of Zimbabwe. Look at our agriculture, we need more engineers. Look at mining, we need more mining engineers, metallurgists. Look at our roads, we need engineers,” he said.
President Mugabe urged professionals to take advantage of the country’s indigenisation and economic empowerment policies to form their own companies instead of seeking greener pastures abroad.
“We are educating experts… but it is true we may not give them higher salaries compared to other countries like South Africa, Namibia or Australia,” he said.
“But they don’t have the initiatives but to work for whites baas so, so, Rio Tinto and so on. But form your own Rio Tintos.”
President Mugabe also warned farmers that are clandestinely partnering former white farmers on their farms. He said that was another way of bringing back expelled white farmers. He said a land audit would soon expose them.
Speaking at the same occasion, Defence Minister Sydney Sekeramayi said the national security policy and strategy was a major exercise on the NDC programme, which required participants to put into practice the theories learnt in phases 1, 2 and 3 of the exercise.
He said the exercise put into perspective the four main pillars of the State—defence, economics, media and politics.
“In that context, the regional security is viewed as the ability of a nation to order internal life without external interference,” he said.
“The exercise is based on the assumption that there is no institutionalised planning process for national security policy in Zimbabwe, hence the roadmap has been made to provide a sustainable format to assist its strategic planners and participants.”
Minister Sekeramayi said in coming out with the format, they had studied various models of the planning process being followed by countries such as China, USA, Pakistan, Kenya and South Africa.
He said the aim of the exercise was for participants to practise broad policy formulation at strategic decision-making levels.
At the end of the exercise, Minister Sekeramayi said, participants should be able to comprehend the national security strategy formulation process.
The exercise, dubbed Course 4/2015, which started last year in September, ends on August 12.
Vice Presidents Emmerson Mnangagwa, Phelekezela Mphoko, Security Minister Kembo Mohadi, Media, Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Christopher Mushohwe, Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services Minister Supa Mandiwanzira, Service Chiefs and other high ranking Government officials attended the event.