National dialogue to continue: President
Tendai Mugabe, Harare Bureau
ZIMBABWE will continue on the path of national dialogue with progressive stakeholders and will not be swayed by negative forces working against the national spirit, President Mnangagwa has said.
Further, President Mnangagwa drew an analogy saying even in Heaven God had problems with the devil but He still remained the Creator.
President Mnangagwa made these remarks while fielding questions from journalists during a press conference held at the conclusion of the third session of the Zimbabwe-South Africa Bi-National Commission Summit in Harare yesterday.
The President was asked on the progress made on the issue of national dialogue and how inclusive the process was.
“With regards to the issue of dialogue, from the time of the inception of the current dispensation, we have talked about peace, unity and dialogue. That we have not left, we will continue to do so,” said President Mnangagwa.
“However, in a democracy, it is not a crime to move away from progress for those who are not willing to come to the table with the rest of the parties and organisations in the country. We are determined to work on a way forward to the betterment of our country and vision of our country to better the lives of our people.
“We cannot compel everybody to come to the table. People have their democratic right to walk away from progress but those who have the need and desire and who are patriotic to their country, they will always come together and contribute their constructive ideas to moving forward.”
President Mnangagwa continued: “As a result of this endeavour I have created the Presidential Advisory Council which puts together the top brains of our people in Zimbabwe as well as top brains outside Zimbabwe in Sadc, on the continent and beyond who have agreed to come and participate in that area so that we tap into the wisdom of those who have gone before us in developing and modernising their countries.
“It is our view that we don’t need to commit the mistakes of those who have gone ahead of us. We need to leap frog in terms of our development to catch up with other developing countries but to do so, we need their hands like what South Africa is doing – holding our hand, moving with us and then other countries. That’s what we are doing. We will not be swayed by negative forces because even the lord upstairs was not able to keep his house in order — he had satan. So, these things happen but He still remains there as the Creator.”
The remarks by President Mnangagwa followed a national dialogue process that he initiated recently involving all political parties that participated in the July 30 2018 harmonised elections.
MDC-Alliance and a few parties chose not to participate in the national dialogue process.
In their absence, significant progress had been registered with political parties agreeing on the framework of the dialogue and setting up committees to focus on various issues that will be covered by the dialogue.