Ibbo Mandaza told you can’t use ANC platform to talk about Zimbabwe elections


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African National Congress secretary-general Fikile Mbalula has stopped a public lecture by Southern African Political Economy Series Trust director Ibbo Mandaza that was scheduled for tomorrow at the OR Tambo School of Leadership.

Mandaza was supposed to present a lecture entitled: State of Democracy in the SADC region- a reflection on the national elections in Zimbabwe.

In a letter to David Masondo, the principal of the school, Mbalula said that while he appreciated the tradition of the OR Tambo School of Leadership in promoting vigorous debate, the school was intricately linked to the ANC. As such use of the school was use of an ANC platform.

“At the moment the leadership of the ANC is engaged in a number of delicate engagements regarding the situation in Zimbabwe. In this context, a public lecture, at this time, on what is clearly an ANC platform, would complicate these initiatives,” Mbalula said.

It was in this context, he said, that he was requesting that the lecture should not proceed.
Mbalula has been under attack over the past few weeks for his open support of ZANU-PF, its leader Emmerson Mnangagwa and Zimbabwe.

Mbalula was in Zimbabwe this week for Mnangagwa’s inauguration and held talks with his ZANU-PF counterpart Obert Mpofu.

He openly stated that the ANC supported ZANU-PF and endorsed Mnangagwa’s victory but added that Zimbabwe issues must be resolved by Zimbabweans.

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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