HARARE – ZIMBABWEAN President Robert Mugabe has mocked longtime rival Botswana after its candidate was defeated at the elections for the chairperson of the African Union Commission.
Botswana foreign minister, Dr Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi, lost the recent election that Chad’s Moussa Faki Mahamat eventually won to succeed South Africa’s Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
Kenya’s Amina Mohamed, Abdoulaye Bathily of Senegal and Mba Mokuy of Equatorial Guinea also contested.
In reference to the Botswana politician, Mugabe said “the poor lady” suffered for the “sins” of President Ian Khama, who rarely attends meetings of the AU and the Southern African Development Community (SADC).
Botswana is usually at loggerheads for differing with fellow African nations in a number of topical issues on human rights, which also might have undermined its candidate’s chances.
“We worked hard behind the scenes and the poor lady tried her best,” said Mugabe upon returning to Harare from the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa.
She disclosed why voters at the AU elections snubbed the Botswana candidate.
“Other countries were arguing, ‘you (Venson-Moitoi) are daughter whose father (Khama) never appears at the AU and sometimes takes positions contrary to the SADC region’” said Mugabe.
“So, she had no chance.”
This is the latest in a series of public tiffs between the two former British colonies.
Last year, Khama called on Mugabe to resign claiming his leadership posed a crisis for the region.
– CAJ News