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Tuesday, 30 September 2014 13:39

Russia and China Backing for Zimbabwe Scares West

HARARE, Zimbabwe, Sept 30, 2014, (New Zimbabwe) -- ZANU PF chairman and senior cabinet minister, Simon Khaya Moyo, has claimed that Chinese and Russian backing for Zimbabwe has left the West shaking in its boots as its agenda to force regime change in Harare collapses.

Khaya Moyo made the boast while addressing a press conference in Havana after concluding week-long visit to Cuba last week.

"We understand their (West) fear when China and Russia are pouring in billions of dollars to partner with Zimbabwe in infrastructure, mining and beneficiation of minerals within Zimbabwe," Khaya Moyo said.

President Robert Mugabe and a handful of cabinet ministers visited China in September and managed to commit Beijing to funding various infrastructure development projects which are expected to help fire the country's faltering economy as well as create thousands of jobs.

The veteran leader returned to Harare to host a Russian delegation headed by foreign minister Sergey Lavrov and sealing a $3 billion deal to develop what is expected to be the country's largest platinum mine.

Zimbabwe's economy has been struggling for years, a problem Mugabe blames on sanctions imposed by the European Union and the United States between 2002 and 2003 to punish alleged rights abuses and vote fraud.

Harare denies the allegations, insisting the country was being punished for its land reforms which saw about 4,000 commercial white farmers being forced off their land to make way for more than half a million landless blacks.

Explained Khaya Moyo: "Zimbabwe undertook the land reform programme which took more than 12 million hectares of land owned by about 4,000 British settlers and corporations and gave it back to millions of Zimbabweans after almost 100 years of being dispossessed.

"So we were slapped with trade sanctions, unilaterally. It is because our political clarity is too dangerous for their selfish interests and others should be encouraged not to follow suit by demonstrating that if they dare follow, their economies will be wrecked by unilateral economic sanctions."

Although agricultural production collapsed following the violent and poorly-planned land reforms, helping trigger a decade-long economic crisis, the resettled farmers have turned the corner with tobacco output now close to the pre-2002 levels.

This, Khaya Moyo said, had left former coloniser Britain red in the face with embarrassment.

"We now see their embarrassment when our own Zimbabwean new farmers are on a trajectory back to, and beyond what the British settlers were producing," he said.

Ordinary Zimbabweans had also awakened to the regime change machinations of the West and gave them a perfect riposte by handing Zanu PF an emphatic new mandate in the 2013 elections.

"We see their nervousness when the regime change agenda is in tatters when the people of Zimbabwe on 31 July 2013 voted for the end of a dysfunctional unity government with western puppets," Khaya Moyo said.

"This is the mandate that we got from the people and we are pursuing it sanctions or no sanctions. Not negotiable ... I am glad to note that the tool of sanctions is now blunt and losing its effectiveness every day."

Opposition parties claim Mugabe and his Zanu PF party cheated their way to victory in last year's elections and have vowed not to participate in the next ballot scheduled for 2018 unless key reforms are implemented to make the contest fairer.

But Khaya Moyo said rivals know that they cannot win against a newly energised Zanu PF.

"Things are moving very well (with regard to the economy) and although the opposition got a few seats in the last elections, we will give them no chance in 2018 because people know who is who," he said. "Our party is guided by the sanctity of the peoples' desires... our policies and programmes are people centred and people like the policies and programmes."



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