The opposition MDC and civil society organisation in Zimbabwe have confirmed that protests against Zambia’s president Michael Sata are on tomorrow at the Zambian embassy in USA.
The Zimbabwean diaspora leader in the USA Den Moyo called for protests outside Zambian diplomatic premises on 21st June because of President Sata’s support of Zanu PF as part of the sixth round of the Free Zimbabwe Global Protests.
The monthly demonstrations, dubbed the 21st Movement, are organised by the international structures of the MDC led by Morgan Tsvangirai and have been taking place outside Zimbabwean and South African embassies and consulates around the world. The protests for the last five months have been primarily targeting South Africa, as the mediator in the ongoing political stalemate in Zimbabwe, as a way of putting pressure on Jacob Zuma to ensure real change before a fresh election.
But for the sixth round the focus will now shift to Zambia, with the organisers of the demonstrations saying they are “dismayed” by recent comments and actions of Sata’s.
Most recently Sata chanted ZANU PF slogans at a regional summit of Southern African leaders in Angola, while referring to Mugabe as ‘sekuru’ (grandfather). He has also previously denigrated the MDC-T, accusing it of being a ‘puppet’ of the West.
“To our greatest disappointment, Mr. Sata has become a self-appointed spokesman and gatekeeper for not only ZANU PF but those who work daily to crash democratic voices in Zimbabwe,” said Den Moyo, the coordinator of the 21st Movement and the Chairman of the US executive of the MDC-T.
He told SW Radio Africa that Sata should leave Zimbabweans to determine their destiny “without him carelessly supporting a party whose time had expired and trying to remain in power through violent suppression of the democratic aspirations of people.”
“Does he not see any paradox in wishing us a life president when Zambia has changed leaders five times?” Moyo said.
He added that the whole of SADC needs to be pressured and encouraged to champion democracy around the region, and he hopes their protest will drive this message home.
President Michael Sata’s party the PF also recently signed a memorandum of understanding with National Congress Party (NCP) led by Omar al-Bashir who is wanted by the ICC for crimes against humanity. The memorandum involves sending only PF cadres to Sudan’s non-existant International University of Africa in that country.