NOT even Shakespeare could have written a better plot for South Africa’s President Thabo Mbeki.
The man who on September 11 brokered a Government of National Unity between Zimbabwe’s political rivals, President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister designate Morgan Tsvangirai was forced to resign by his political party the ANC.
This came amid accusations from a judge that Mbeki’s office had a hand in corruption charges levelled against Mbeki’s successor Jacob Zuma.
The leftist governing ANC leadership went after Mbeki, asking him to resign when he had a little over a year to finish his last term. What seems intriguing to most is that Mbeki showed no emotion towards the political guillotine over his head.
He simply said he will step down and go through all formalities.
When Zimbabweans asked Mbeki to cut Mugabe’s dictatorial tendencies by denouncing violence in Zimbabwe he said nothing.
What seemed interesting to me is that Mbeki does not seem to care for humanity. When South Africa was burdened by Zimbabwean refugees, he refused to pointout that, to Mugabe until it was too late.
The xenophobic attacks targeted Zimbabwean workers and a few other African foreigners. What happened during those riots was beyond imagination.
When South Africa was under apartheid rules Zimbabweans opened their homes to their South African neighbours.
We helped them and did not burn them at night as we witnessed early this year.
One would think since Mbeki is business- minded, all that cheap Zimbabwean labour pouring from the north of the Limpopo only helped South Africa’s business interests to grow.
Mbeki used his so-called quiet diplomacy to protect Mugabe for as long as he could because it served his interests.
The West got fed up with the Harare government and cut all business links with Mugabe and his elite Zanu PF cronies. At least this touched the economy where it hurts most and has worked to bring the dictator to talk.
The irony of Mbeki’s exit is that while he respects the will of the ANC and the people of South Africa, he fostered a deal that did not respect the will of the majority of Zimbabweans at home and abroad.
Mbeki did not condemn the June election when Zanu PF released the army units to urban and rural Zimbabwe, cut off food aid to the needy masses and bludgeoned Zimbabweans for their allegiance to the Movement for Democratic Change.
Mbeki did not rebuke Mugabe’s hallucinations of a Western conspiracy, and his disregard of the ballot box.
While the sun is up high in Sub-Saharan Africa, and the people trample upon their own shadows at mid-day, Mbeki’s sun is setting.
I only hope that Southern Africa rests from the political drama of 2008.
I wish Mbeki well in what he embarks on, in any case he still has the Zimbabwean saga hanging.
The plot of Mbeki ends with his emotionless resignation.