Mugabe, Mbeki and Obasanjo held a highly secret meeting


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Presidents Robert Mugabe, Thabo Mbeki and Olusegun Obasanjo are reported to have held a highly secret four–hour meeting in Harare at which there were no ministers, high commissioners or note takers.

This was disclosed to United States embassy officials by South Africa’s ambassador to Zimbabwe Jeremiah Ndou who said Mbeki and Mugabe did not look comfortable when they came out to face the press.

Mugabe was in a lighter mood, however, during a luncheon that he hosted for his guests when Home Affairs Minister John Nkomo arrived late but in high spirits after meeting with United Nations Development Programme administrator Mark Malloch-Brown.

Mugabe is reported to have joked about Malloch-Brown being British.

The embassy related the joke to Mugabe’s attack on white farmers, the British and anyone standing in the way of the fast-track land resettlement programme on tree planting day.

“If they are not prepared to be part of us, then we will ask them to leave our country harmoniously,” it quoted Mugabe as saying.

 

Full cable:


Viewing cable 00HARARE6803, SOUTH AFRICAN HIGH COMMISSIONER COMMENTS ON

If you are new to these pages, please read an introduction on the structure of a cable as well as how to discuss them with others. See also the FAQs

Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

00HARARE6803

2000-12-05 06:05

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Harare

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

 

050605Z Dec 00

 

 

CONFIDENTIAL     PTO1650

 

PAGE 01       HARARE 06803 050607Z

ACTION AF-00

 

INFO LOG-00   NP-00   AGRE-00 AID-00   ACQ-00   CEA-01   CIAE-00

COME-00 CTME-00 DINT-00 DODE-00 DOEE-00 DOTE-00 SRPP-00

DS-00   EB-00   EUR-00   EXIM-01 E-00     FAAE-00 VC-00

FRB-00   H-01     TEDE-00 INR-00   ITC-01   LAB-01   L-00

VCE-00   AC-01   NSAE-00 OES-01   OMB-01   OPIC-01 PA-00

PM-00   PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     SP-00   SSO-00   STR-00

TRSE-00 USIE-00 EPAE-00 PMB-00   DSCC-00 DRL-02   G-00

NFAT-00 SAS-00     /011W

——————A78524 050607Z /38

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7770

INFO NSC WASHDC PRIORITY

SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY PRIORITY

AMCONSUL LAGOS PRIORITY

AMEMBASSY ABUJA PRIORITY

AMEMBASSY NAIROBI PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L HARARE 006803

 

SIPDIS

 

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH

 

PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS

 

NAIROBI FOR PFLAUMER

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/04/2010

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 02       HARARE 06803 050607Z

TAGS: PREL EAGR PGOV ECON ENRG ZI

SUBJECT: SOUTH AFRICAN HIGH COMMISSIONER COMMENTS ON

MBEKI/OBASANJO VISIT

 

REF: HARARE 6802 (NOTAL)

 

CLASSIFIED BY AMBASSADOR TOM MCDONALD FOR REASONS 1.5

(B) AND (D).

 

1. (C) SOUTH AFRICAN HIGH COMMISSIONER A.J.D. NDOU TOLD

AMBASSADOR MCDONALD AT LUNCH ON DECEMBER 2 THAT, WHILE HE

HAD WORKED ON THE PREPARATIONS FOR THE MEETING AMONG

PRESIDENTS MBEKI, OBASANJO AND MUGABE, HE HAD NOT BEEN

BRIEFED ON THE SUBSTANCE OF THEIR NOVEMBER 30 MEETING.

ACCORDING TO GODFREY MWEDZI, ZIMBABWEAN MINISTRY OF

FOREIGN AFFAIRS DIRECTOR FOR AFRICA, THE THREE HEADS OF

STATE MET ALONE FOR FOUR HOURS, EXCLUDING MINISTERS,

HIGH COMMISSIONERS AND NOTE TAKERS FROM THEIR

DELIBERATIONS. THEY EMERGED AFTER THEIR MEETING TO FACE

THE PRESS, AT WHICH TIME NEITHER MBEKI NOR MUGABE LOOKED

COMFORTABLE.

 

2. (C) PRESIDENT MBEKI HOPED TO HAVE A CANDID

CONVERSATION WITH MUGABE ABOUT ZIMBABWE’S POLITICAL AND

ECONOMIC QUAGMIRE, BECAUSE HE DOES NOT UNDERSTAND WHAT

IS HAPPENING HERE, ACCORDING TO THE SOUTH AFRICAN HIGH

COMMISSIONER. THE SOUTH AFRICAN HEAD OF STATE REASONS

THAT IF THE ZIMBABWEAN GOVERNMENT ONLY FOLLOWED ITS OWN

LAW WITH RESPECT TO LAND REFORM THE PROBLEMS IT IS

ENCOUNTERING COULD BE RESOLVED. THE ZIMBABWEAN

PRESIDENT SHOULD BE USING THE POLICE IN A NON-PARTISAN

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 03       HARARE 06803 050607Z

MANNER AND RESPECTING COURT ORDERS. AS IT WAS, THE LAND

ISSUE IS BECOMING A BIGGER REGIONAL PROBLEM, AFFECTING

NOT ONLY SOUTH AFRICA BUT OTHERS. MBEKI WAS MEASURED IN

WHAT HE SAID, HOWEVER, SINCE HE DID NOT WANT THE DOOR TO

CONTINUING ENGAGEMENT SHUT ON HIM, NDOU TOLD THE

AMBASSADOR. RATHER, THE SOUTH AFRICAN CHIEF EXECUTIVE

LOOKED TO HIS NIGERIAN COUNTERPART TO COME ON STRONGER.

ON AT LEAST THREE PREVIOUS OCCASIONS MBEKI HAD DELIVERED

A SIMILAR MESSAGE, BUT HAD CONCLUDED THAT HE COULD NOT

FORCE MUGABE TO DO SOMETHING THAT HE DID NOT WANT TO DO,

THE SOUTH AFRICAN DIPLOMAT AVERRED. NDOU ALSO TOLD US

THAT THE TWO KEY SOUTH AFRICAN PARASTATALS, ESKOM AND

SASOL, WILL CONTINUE SUPPLYING ZIMBABWE LIMITED AMOUNTS

OF ELECTRICITY AND FUEL ON AN OPEN ACCOUNT BASIS, EVEN

THOUGH THESE ORGANIZATIONS IN THE PAST HAVE ADVOCATED

BUSINESSLIKE DECISIONS BEING TAKEN REGARDING ZIMBABWE.

 

3. (C) DURING THE LUNCHEON THAT MUGABE HOSTED FOR HIS

GUESTS (THAT NDOU ATTENDED), HOME AFFAIRS MINISTER JOHN

NKOMO ARRIVED LATE AND IN GOOD SPIRITS DIRECTLY FROM HIS

MEETING WITH UNDP ADMINISTRATOR MARK MALLOCH-BROWN.

NDOU SAID THAT AFTER NKOMO REPORTED HOW PRODUCTIVE HIS

CONVERSATION HAD BEEN, MUGABE RESPONDED WITH A JOKE

ABOUT MALLOCH-BROWN BEING BRITISH. (COMMENT: ON

DECEMBER 2 AT A NATIONAL TREE PLANTING DAY CEREMONY,

PRESIDENT MUGABE DEPARTED FROM HIS PREPARED REMARKS AND

REVERTED TO HIS INCREASINGLY TRADEMARK, VITUPERATIVE

ATTACK AGAINST THE WHITE FARMERS, THE COURTS, THE

BRITISH AND ANY AND ALL STANDING IN THE WAY OF THE FAST-

TRACK LAND RESETTLEMENT PROGRAM. “IF THEY ARE NOT

PREPARED TO BE PART OF US, THEN WE WILL ASK THEM TO

CONFIDENTIAL

 

PAGE 04       HARARE 06803 050607Z

LEAVE OUR COUNTRY HARMONIOUSLY,” SAID MUGABE. END

COMMENT.)

 

MCDONALD

 

CONFIDENTIAL

 

>

 

(42 VIEWS)

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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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