An outgoing member of parliament for Zimbabwe’s ruling Zanu-PF party has reportedly claimed that the southern African country cannot prosper “without the involvement of whites” in its “affairs”.
According to New Zimbabwe.com, Joseph Tshuma who was the MP for Mpopoma Pelandaba said this while speaking at a political parties discussion forum in Bulawayo over the weekend.
“We are coming from the era of Robert Mugabe. An era which closed us out from the rest of the world. We began to live in a vacuum. That was the most dangerous thing that was ever experienced by this country other than the bombings during the liberation struggle,” Tshuma was quoted as saying.
Tshuma said that Mugabe made a mistake when he told Tony Blair to “keep your England and I’ll keep my Zimbabwe”.
“Yes, we kept our Zimbabwe but what kind of Zimbabwe did we keep? One thing that I have been made to understand and agree strongly whether painful or not, we cannot do away with that person called umkhiwa (white).”
Isolation from the International world
At the height of land seizures in Zimbabwe in 2002, Mugabe denounced the then British prime minister Tony Blair, telling him: “Let me keep my Zimbabwe”.
A report by The Guardian said at the time that Mugabe made these utterances as he defended the seizures of white-owned farms during an earth summit in Johannesburg.
To a round of applause from the conference hall, the Zimbabwean leader declared: “So Blair, keep your England and let me keep my Zimbabwe,” said the Guardian.
Meanwhile, Mugabe’s successor, President Emmerson Mnangagwa, has promised to work towards ending Zimbabwe’s isolation from the international world.
Al Jazeera reported in January that Mnangagwa had vowed to introduce new policies to re-engage with the world community and attract foreign investment after decades of isolation under Mugabe.
Mnangagwa indicated that his priorities were to revive the southern African nation’s ailing economy and fight corruption.
“My government is committed to open Zimbabwe out to investment by building a free and transparent economy which benefits Zimbabweans and is welcoming to outsiders,” Mnangagwa was quoted as saying during his first state of the nation address.