British Parliament Ups Ante On ED

The United Kingdom Member of Parliament for Vauxhall Katey Hoey has pleaded with her government and the international community to suspend any initiatives that seek to re-engage with Zimbabwe until the President Emmerson Mnangagwa administration halts human rights abuses.

Since assuming power following a military coup in November 2017, Mnangagwa has been on a global offensive seeking support and partnership under his ‘Zimbabwe Is Open for Business’ mantra.

Early this month, Mnangagwa went on a four-nation visit that took him to Russia, Belarus, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan and reported signing a number of trade agreements.

Speaking in the British parliament yesterday, Hoey said it was unacceptable to be talking about private sector investment when innocent civilians were being assaulted and killed in Zimbabwe.

“I think we have to be very clear and the United Kingdom government has to be very clear that the international community should completely suspend any initiatives relating to reengaging with Zimbabwe government.  It is unacceptable in my view, to be even talking about debt restructuring, and private sector investment while so many Zimbabwean civilians are being assaulted and killed,” she said.

The Vauxhall parliamentarian condemned the Zimbabwe government’s recent expenditure, in particular  President Mnangagwa’s luxurious plane to Eurasia which she said was inconsiderate given that public hospitals lack adequate medication.

Hoey further expressed concern on the continuation of military deployment on the streets which is in violation of the rule of law at international level.

“I think we have to be very clear in calling for the end of the deployment of the military, they have to go back into their barracks.  We have to get the UN to say that and to make a very strong statement on the rule of law,” she said.

Hoey described the recent disturbances in Zimbabwe as deplorable and that an independent investigation commission be instituted to establish what transpired mid-January during the unrest.

“We got to get a complete, absolute condemnation of the way the citizens’ internet access was closed down. I think we need to be calling for an independent investigation of the human rights violations to be led by the African Union or the United Nations and we have to get to who gave the orders. This is the same with the people who were killed just after elections.  We never real got to the bottom of who real gave the orders.”

Britain’s voice on the situation in Zimbabwe comes at a time South African opposition parties have hit at the Zanu PF government over its recent crackdown on opposition supporters.

Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane has since written to Mnangagwa requesting a meeting to discuss about the obtaining situation.

On the other hand, Economic Freedom Fighter leader, Julias Malema has also spoke strongly against brutalization of citizens by soldiers saying it was ‘foolish’ of Mnangagwa.

Reached for comment on the Hoey’s remarks Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said she was not in office.

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