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Zambian Minister goes after Chinamasa and Matinyarare

by Staff reporter
14 Sep 2023 at 06:28hrs | Views
The Zambian Provincial Minister for Copperbelt, Elisha Matamba, has pledged to inform the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the African Union (AU), and the United Nations (UN) about alleged threats to President Hakainde Hichilema's life by Patrick Chinamasa of Zanu-PF.

Matamba has also committed to taking action regarding statements made by Chinamasa and Zanu-PF supporter Rutendo Matinyarare, who reportedly confessed to involvement in the death of former Zambian President Levy Mwanawasa. Mwanawasa, a key figure in Zimbabwe's 2008-2013 Government of National Unity (GNU), passed away due to a stroke in August 2008 in a French hospital.

Addressing protestors who presented him with a petition to deliver to Zambia's Foreign Ministry, Matamba emphasized that allegations of Chinamasa and Matinyarare's involvement in Mwanawasa's death could not be ignored. While highlighting the historically peaceful relations between Zambia and Zimbabwe, Matamba issued a warning to the Zanu-PF Politburo member, cautioning him against harming Hichilema and asserting that Zambia would take action.

"I acknowledge the petition concerning threats to President Hichilema's life. I've also learned that Chinamasa and Rutendo have admitted their involvement in Mwanawasa's death. I want to assure you that I will present this petition to the Foreign Affairs Minister, who will utilize diplomatic channels to address this matter with SADC, the AU, and ultimately the UN. If someone confesses to assassinating a foreign president and is now plotting against another, we cannot stand idly by and wait for another life to be lost. To Chinamasa and Matinyarare, Zimbabwe and Zambia are like siblings; we have coexisted peacefully for many years. Some of those in their government used to reside in Zambia. We have lived as neighbors in harmony. Before you take any action, before you harm Hichilema, we will hold you accountable. We will take action."

Matinyarare has denied the allegations, while Chinamasa has not yet responded. After years of peaceful cooperation dating back to the liberation war, Zambia and Zimbabwe may face uncertain times if these claims are substantiated.

Tensions between the two nations escalated on August 25 when Zambian national Nevers Mumba, appointed by Hichilema to lead SADC's Election Observer Mission (EOM) to Zimbabwe's polls, delivered a critical report on their observations. Zanu-PF accused Mumba and the Zambian President of being influenced by Western powers, sparking a war of words. Mumba urged Zanu-PF to address their concerns through proper channels, while Zanu-PF contended that Hichilema deliberately sought to discredit their elections. Zimbabwe's recent elections have faced widespread criticism, including preliminary reports from SADC, concerns from the European Union (EU) about their fairness, and assessments from the Carter Center and The Commonwealth.

Source - NewZimbabwe