The government says it is shocked by the uncharacteristic behaviour on the part of President Ian Khama of Botswana of publicly criticising the President Robert Mugabe.
In a statement to ZBC News, the Minister of Information, Media and Broadcasting Services, Dr Chris Mushohwe (pictured) said Mr Khama who until last month was at the helm of SADC should know better that he should not use the media platform to criticise fellow SADC leaders as he has done with President Mugabe.
“It is taboo in African etiquette and diplomacy. Mugabe has at all times cautioned African leaders against attacking each other in public as this would serve to strengthen the hand of western imperialism at the expense of African unity and peace,” said Minister Mushohwe.
Dr Mushohwe said in the case of President Khama it must be pointed out that he should have known better to keep his views about Mugabe’s age and administration to himself.
- Mugabe hits back at bachelor Khama…tells 65 year old to find a wife to marry
Minister Mushohwe also said the two leaders met recently at the AU summit in Kigali, Rwanda, SADC summit in Mbabane, Swaziland and last Tuesday sat side by side at the inauguration of President Edgar Lungu in Lusaka, Zambia where President Mugabe spoke glowingly about his late father, Sir Seretse Khama.
Dr Mushohwe said he wonders why during all these meetings President Khama did not raise his concerns with Cde Mugabe and expressed hope that this will be the last time he opens his mouth to criticise President Mugabe and fellow African leaders in the manner he did.
“All those patting President Khama on the back for a job well done are hypocrites who have sold their souls to the devil and do not mean well neither for Zimbabwe nor for the sub-region,” said Dr Mushohwe.
He also reminded Mr Khama that President Mugabe’s term of office runs until 2018 and anybody suggesting that he should leave office now is an enemy of the people of Zimbabwe who continue to rally behind his popular leadership.-zbc