US, Zanu PF relations thaw



The ruling Zanu PF party has claimed that the United States is showing signs of warming up to Harare despite previously frosty relations worsened by the imposition of sanctions on the President Emmerson Mnangagwa administration describing the latest visit to the party headquarters by officials from Washington as a positive move.

Relations between the two countries have been frosty since the agrarian reform that saw Washington imposing sanctions on several government officials and companies linked to the late former President Robert Mugabe’s government in the turn of the millennium.

The renewal of sanctions continued even under the new administration and has seen Harare and Washington engaged in a war of words on several occasions.

Relations between the two countries worsened after the recent inclusion on the sanctions list of Fossil Group owner Obey Chimuka, Mnangagwa’s son Emmerson Jnr, business tycoon Kudakwashe Tagwireyi’s wife Sandra Mupunga and marketing executive Nqobile Magwizi.

However, it was the visit by US officials to the Zanu PF headquarters that the party spokesperson Christopher Mutsvangwa said was indication of positive results to the country’s re-engagement agenda.

“America is an important country when it comes to diplomacy,” Mutsvangwa said.

“They did have a bone to pick with Zanu PF since land reform in 2002 but they now say they will approach all political parties in Zimbabwe, including Zanu PF. The whole discussion was constructive,” he said.

“We cannot be jealous of America. If we get along well with America, it will make our development trajectory much easier because of its capabilities,” he added.

“They came to tell us we have no preferred horses in Zimbabwe. They claimed that we were perceived as being aligned with certain political parties, namely the CCC and MDC, but that we now state that we will treat all political parties equally.

“We want peaceful elections, and whatever the Zimbabweans decide will be carried out,” Mutsvangwa said.

Mutsvangwa, who used to call the US names in the past, had a change of tone adding the message from Washington was refreshing.

“This is a good message and it is very important because we have always suspected that America wanted to use a treachery-prone party, the CCC, who went abroad and asked for sanctions against their own people.”

“MDC and CCC are all the same. They fished and spewed their way through the alphabet, and when they had all 26 letters, they named it CCC, which I’m sure will quadrille, quintuplet C,” he said in apparent reference to multiple splits within the opposition camp.

“The Americans have arrived and included Zanu PF in their views which we welcome because we want to have good relations with America.

“We want to be friends with all and enemies with none, and that’s the spirit of our President and it appears that the message is making headway even in the die-hard western capitals.”

On claims that the visit by Belarusian President, Alexander Lukashenko, last week was to benefit a few instead of the whole nation, Mutsvangwa said: “Belarus provides us with benefits other than agriculture and farming has no political party.”


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