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SADC Summit: What we should know

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WHILE the recent visit by the SADC Preparatory Mission, led by deputy executive secretary corporate affairs Dr Judith Kateera, to Zimbabwe temporarily doused the ‘fresh elections’ campaign by the opposition, there remains disturbing mischief from that part to keep the country in perpetual election mode. 

Zimbabwe will take over chairmanship of the regional bloc from Angola when it hosts the 44th SADC Summit in August. 

But since the August 23 2023 harmonised general elections there have been malicious efforts by the CCC’s former leader, Nelson Chamisa, and one SADC EOM member, Nevers Mumba, to push for Harare to be put on the bloc’s agenda and/or push for fresh elections. 

They frantically ran a campaign to push for an Extraordinary Summit on Zimbabwe in October which duly suffered a stillbirth. 

Even when SADC eventually held the Extraordinary Summit in Luanda, Angola, on November 4 2023, which focused on the security situation in the DRC, they fed their gullible supporters with the false narrative that Harare had been brought up for discussion. 

All this was supposed to be ‘achieved’, against protocol, before Zimbabwe assumed leadership of the bloc. 

Issues to do with elections, peace and security (unless there is a crisis), regional collaboration and trade, among others, are discussed at Ordinary Summits as will be the case in August. 

Mumba’s home country, Zambia, is the current Chair of the Organ on Politics and Security (Troika) — a crucial arm of SADC — and attempts to manipulate that organ also failed as other member-States deftly sifted through the Western-sponsored anti-Zimbabwe shenanigans. 

But the November 4 gathering was crucial in that President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s candid chat with his Zambian counterpart, Hakainde Hichilema, seemed to have culled some of the opposition antics that had been playing out in the political arena during the time. 

With those fresh elections mantra having as good as dead in the water, they tried again to revive the narrative when Dr Kateera and her team arrived in the country on February 21. 

A seemingly ‘innocent’ question from an excitable ‘foreign’ scribe triggered the response that all but put paid to the opposition’s expectations for SADC ‘intervention’ through calling for fresh elections because Chamisa, with tacit support from his regional ‘allies’, have been collaborating behind the scenes to make those hollow noises. 

The scribe in question ‘sought’ clarity on the purpose of Dr Kateera’s visit, innocuously throwing in the fresh elections narrative on behalf of his handlers. 

“We have come to meet with Foreign Affairs officials as they are our hosts. We are going to start working on the preparations for hosting of this summit which will be preceded by a number of meetings like the Council Meeting and Industrialisation Week where we are also set to invite the private sector to be part of the programme,” said Dr Kateera. 

The SADC delegation had come to Zimbabwe to assess its preparedness to host the Summit. No more, no less. 

The preparatory mission is a technical team that will be working with Zimbabwean authorities to put in place modalities for the successful hosting of a regional event of such magnitude. 

On its part, Zimbabwe has laid the groundwork for the successful hosting of the Summit. 

Continuing from its pre-election infrastructural development thrust, more than 40 roads will undergo extensive rehabilitation among several other projects that have already started in earnest. 

While Government is working on this and other issues, information gathered by this publication shows an uncanny plot by the opposition and its cohorts to destabilise the Summit through their usual antics. 

Their plan involves creation of fictitious rifts between the country’s leadership using named media houses and social media activists who are priming themselves for a hefty pay check from their Western handlers. 

A malicious anti-Zimbabwe propaganda campaign will also form a critical chunk of the destabilisation project that is being co-ordinated by known Western media activists operating both within and outside Zimbabwe. 

The project will be capped by the usual abduction and political violence ‘schemes’ by the clueless opposition. 

Over the years, the opposition has become masters at faking abductions and concocting non-existent crises to coincide with major regional or global events in a futile bid to tarnish the country’s image. 

That, too, will fail in August during the Summit. 

“Such misinterpretations, emanating not only from Voice of America but also from perennially unreliable sources like Gambakwe, highlight a concerning trend wherein the intricacies of regional diplomacy are overshadowed by amateurish sensationalism,” observes political analyst, Dereck Goto. 

“The opposition’s complicity in disseminating false information regarding the SADC team’s objectives, despite the conclusiveness of recent elections, serves as a regrettable testament to the divisive tactics employed by a misguided minority.” 

They will continue misleading the nation on issues to do with fresh elections, including their now hollow lies that they are ‘working’ with SADC to achieve the same. 

But as has been the case over the years, it is proving difficult for them to conceal the West’s ever intrusive hand. 

On leaving Zimbabwe, Dr Kateera’s team expressed satisfaction with the country’s readiness to host the Summit which will all but seal the opposition’s already decided fate. 

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