The Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) Chairperson, Hage Geingob remained mum on the regional body’s position on events unfolding in Zimbabwe when he convened the SADC double Troika this week.
Geingob called the SADC Double Troika Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on Thursday to discuss matters related to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), where the results of the polls are being disputed in the courts by the runner up, Martin Fayulu, after Felix Tshisekedi was declared the provisional winner by the country’s electoral commission.
The Troika also reviewed and assessed the political situation in that country following its recently held elections, with Geingob voicing his concern over loss, but staying clear of the Zimbabwe situation, where three people were killed, including a police officer.
“The Democratic Republic of Congo is at the crossroads. The announcement on 10 January 2019 by the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) has raised hope, especially among the people of DRC. As in any election, it has also raised fears among some quarters of the Congolese people, fear that they might be left out, hence the challenge in the Constitutional Court of the DRC. Our task therefore is to assist our brothers and sister in the DRC to manage and reconcile those fears and aspirations. All of us have been inundated with expressions of interests, by other global players. The people of DRC are waiting and the world is watching,” he said.
Zimbabwean nationals in Namibia are expected to hold a peaceful demonstration today (Friday) from Maruea Mall to the Zimbabwean embassy situated at the corner of Independence Avenue and Grimm Street.
When contacted for comment, the embassy refused to share information regarding the match today, saying the deputy ambassador was out of the office.
Despite SADC and AU silence on Zimbabwe crisis, some international human rights organizations this week appealed to the SADC and African Union (AU) to intervene in Zimbabwe, where state security agents are using excessive force to stop public protests over the country’s economic challenges.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Amnesty International (AI) say the situation in Zimbabwe is worsening as armed soldiers and policemen are invading homes, beating up and shooting some innocent civilians following protests on Monday that left scores of people nursing severe injuries.
Human Rights Watch Southern Africa Director, Dewa Mavhinga said the organization hope SADC and the AU would take immediate action to stop the violence.
“This might not go away because it is a message from the people to the government. We, at Human Rights Watch, together with Amnesty International have contacted the South African government, SADC and the African Union and encouraged them to intervene at this stage to avoid further bloodshed,” he said.
“It’s worrying that President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who played a key role in the removal of Robert Mugabe from office, is brutalizing Zimbabweans the same way the former ruler terrorized citizens for more than 37 years.”