By Nyashadzashe Ndoro
President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s under fire administration on Monday threatened the United States ambassador to Zimbabwe with expulsion, accusing him of “coordinating violence” ahead of anti-government protests scheduled for 31 July 2020.
Zanu PF acting spokesperson Patrick Chinamasa accused Brian Nichols of sponsoring violent demonstrations aimed at overthrowing Mnangagwa and his administration.
When Mnangagwa overthrew the late former president Robert Mugabe via a military coup in November 2017 he pledged a clean break with his predecessor’s hard-line stance towards the West.
He pledged to roll out a reform agenda anchored on a re-engagement drive aimed at bringing Zimbabwe back to the community of nations.
Mnangagwa’s administration has effectively abandoned its international re-engagement agenda as evidenced by public confrontations with the US and other western countries. Chinamasa said the US ambassador was a “thug” sponsoring violent demonstrations in Zimbabwe.
“The US ambassador who I’m told is African American, he must be totally ashamed of himself. He continues to engage in acts of undermining this Republic, mobilising and funding disturbances, coordinating violence and training insurgency.
“Our leadership will not hesitate to give him marching orders. Diplomats should not behave like thugs. Brian Nichols is a thug,” Chinamasa said.
“We remind him that he is not a super diplomat in this country. There are several diplomats that are seconded to this republic from the African Union member countries and the world over. They have never masqueraded and pretended to be our prefects as Mr Nichols is doing,” Chinamasa added.
The accusations by Mnangagwa’s regime are coming a few days before the planned 31 July protests against corruption in government.
The convenor of the protest, opposition Transform Zimbabwe leader Jacob Ngarivhume was arrested Monday last week by the police and charged with inciting violence.
On the same day, investigative journalist Hopewell Chin’ono who recently exposed alleged government corruption involving President Mnangagwa’s son, Collins in the supply of coronavirus supplies, was arrested and charged with inciting citizens to “participate in public violence.”