It seems evident that South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma, has decided it’s time to rein in on Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe. Zuma has just announced that he will visit Zimbabwe to assess the progress that has been made in the unity government. In an official statement his office said “President Jacob Zuma will travel to Zimbabwe on the 16-18 March to meet with political parties that are signatories of the Global Political Agreement.
Credit must be given to British Prime Minister, Gordon Brown who recently rebuffed a call by Zuma to end European Union sanctions on Mugabe and his allies. Prime Minister Brown’s no-nonsense response to calls for a premature end of sanctions may have put pressure on Zuma to rethink his position on Mugabe. From the response he got in Britain Zuma may have come to the realisation that the west is adamant about any removal of sanctions and are determined to see through the sanctions regime until Mugabe allows the full implementation of the GNU agreement.
Zuma had hoped to use his recent state visit to Britain to try and influence authorities to remove sanctions targeting the Zimbabwe regime. The South African President had said he disagreed with the view expressed in the west that more pressure in the form of sanctions was the way forward. But this latest attempt by him to shuttle to his neighbour may be the result of mounting pressure by Gordon Brown and the west on him to intervene and end the impasse that has threatened the fragile unity government since its formation.
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