President Robert Mugabe was Friday set to leave for Swaziland to attend an extraordinary summit of heads of states and government to be held in the tiny kingdom’s Ezulwini town.
The Indaba, to be held at Lozitha Royal Palace on Saturday, is on Industrialisation and Regional Integration.
It would be the third foreign visit by the nomadic 93 year old leader in a space of three weeks.
President Mugabe was in Singapore early this month for what his spokespersons said was for a medical review.
He spent less than 24 hours on his return only to fly out to Ghana to attend the West African country’s 60th Independence Day celebrations.
The Zimbabwean leader has come under fire from the opposition for his endless foreign trips which have come at the expense of a country deep in economic abyss.
His trips often draw huge sums from Treasury in terms of his own allowances and those of his entourage.
Former Finance Minister Tendai Biti once said Mugabe travels with atleast $6 million in cash which he does not return back to Treasury.
Since time immemorial, Mugabe has been reluctant to send his deputies on foreign trips.
His spokesperson George Charamba has defended his often taxing foreign jaunts, saying diplomacy “does not come cheap”.
“…What they (critics) should know is that diplomacy costs,” Charamba said while referring to those who have condemned Mugabe for foreign travels.
“It is legitimate spending that makes nations states. Diplomacy does not come cheap, especially when it comes from a country of such significance as Ghana.” Radio VOP