President warns foreign embassies
FOREIGN embassies should stop meddling in local politics by sponsoring dissident groupings to subvert a constitutionally-elected Government, President Mugabe said yesterday.
He also cautioned churches dabbling in politics that Zanu-PF would never tolerate “any nonsense” perpetrated in the name of religion.
Addressing war veterans and party members at the revolutionary party’s headquarters in Harare, President Mugabe said conspiracies to effect regime change would come to naught.
He said he would only leave office at the behest of Zimbabweans not foreigners.
“Foreign embassies in the country that are interfering with our politics, intervening or those doing it clandestinely, I want to warn them to desist from it,” he said.
“The rules that govern them don’t allow them to interfere with our politics, to try to subvert our system of Government and to do things that amount to subverting the present Government and its authority. Please STOP IT!”
Western embassies such as the United States, Britain and France have been implicated as sponsors of demonstrations by shadowy groups such as Tajamuka/Sesijikile in the past weeks.
President Mugabe said Zanu-PF was there to stay and would not be shaken by collusions that had been tested and failed before.
“Journalists, tell those you are representing that Robert Mugabe is still here, well and strong,” he said.
“My people will have me for yet some time. And those outside who don’t like me, I say well that’s your own concerns. I say I don’t mind it. But please don’t interfere with us. We are free people and keep out of our country.”
The President went on: “Yes, they might run around here and there saying President should go. I am created as President by the people of Zimbabwe. I have always and always been, whether acting as President, now as I’m doing or yesterday in the party as secretary general, publicity secretary. If the party, when the moment comes, says we want change, sure we will have that change.
“The party overrides Government and you know our policies override the policies of Government. The policies of Government derive from the policies of the party. Once the party says you rest, yes (I will) or if I ask the party that I think time has come for me to rest I will tell the party that.
“As long as the party still wants me to serve and if I still have the energy, the life and the blessings of God, I will continue. It’s the people all the time, the people’s right, the people’s authority over me and I’m sure that’s the position over all of us in the leadership of the party and the Government.
“We are people-oriented meaning we are governed by the wishes of the people, by their interests. Once we cease to be so we have gone astray. When we ignore the will of the people we would have got lost.”
The President said Pentecostal churches should stick to their mandate of preaching the word of God not to dabble in politics.
His remarks were directed to a clergyman Pastor Evan Mawarire who recently led the #ThisFlag campaign advocating for protests to destabilise the country.
The efforts failed dismally ignored his calls.
Said President Mugabe: “Some rush to these new churches thinking you will get riches quickly. Even the educated, including my Ministers are also going there.
“They now want to interfere in politics and we say to them NO! Do you understand the Bible?
“It will give you the right direction on how to lead. Leave the organisation of the party to us. You now say the party should do this, people are suffering after Zimbabweans they should protest, Government should be changed and what kind of Government (do) you want which surpasses the one that brought you freedom and gave you land?”
He added: “I want to warn them very strongly that Zanu-PF will not tolerate any nonsense that is done in the name of religion. Keep to your religious side and we will respect you. Once you begin to interfere with our politics, you are courting real trouble. We know how to deal with our enemies who have been trying all along to bring about regime change in the country.
“We have the means to defend and protect our hard won freedom. That is crucial to us. We have brought unity to the people and people are united. Please don’t disunite our people.”