President Emmerson Mnangagwa arrived in Scotland last night amid pomp and fanfare and protests by some Zimbabweans, accusing him of human rights violations.
In a series of tweets, Information Secretary Nick Mangwana said, “Zim1 safely in Scotland … Tonight there is a massive welcome party held in honour of HE President @edmnangagwa. Glasgow is the place to be as Zimbabweans from all corners of the UK attend this shindig and welcome their President. The party will spill over to the streets tomorrow. In the UK? Join the party.”
Mangwana claimed that many Zimbabweans were on their way to Scotland from various parts of the United Kingdom to welcome the Zimbabwean president.
In a tweet with a photograph featuring three women dressed in Zimbabwean flag colors, Mangwana said, “Comrades and friends are still arriving in Scotland. Here they are seen with Scottish MP, Maggie Chapman, who made raves when she took her oath in Shona to show she still has links with Zimbabwe. Good to see her adorning the beautiful scarf.”
Most Zanu PF officials and supporters are dressed in Zimbabwean colors, including scarfs similar to the one always donned by Mnangagwa.
But some organizations, including the Restoration of Human Rights Zimbabwe, Zapu, and others protested against Mnangagwa’s invitation to the United National Climate Change Conference or COP26, claiming that he has not opened the democratic space in the southern African nation.
Panyika Karimanzira, spokesperson of the Restoration of Human Rights Zimbabwe, said, “The whole point of our demonstration is that we want to tell the world about how evil Mnangagwa is … We will be telling the world about his atrocious human rights record starting from Gukurahundi genocide of the 80s up to today and also all the atrocities that he committed, the murders he committed over the years. We will also tell the world about his corruption and the lack of rule of law in Zimbabwe, his lack of respect of human rights and his cronyism and all his bad policies that have caused the economy to crush and forced the Zimbabwean population to suffer so much. So, we are here to tell the world about the true story of Zimbabwe and how evil Mnangagwa is …”
Mnangagwa has publicly said the late former President Robert Mugabe was accountable for the Gukurahundi atrocities of the 1980s in which an estimated 20,000 people were killed in Matabeleland and the Midlands province by the Fifth Brigade.
At the United Nations Climate Change Conference, Mangwana said Zimbabwe has some specific programs for tackling air pollution.
“Of the countries at #COP26 Zimbabwe has one of the most ambitious targets to reduce carbon emissions by 40% by 2030. This is in spite of being a net carbon sink Nation.”
He said Zimbabwe’s current emission mitigation plans in the energy sector include the reduction of transmission loss from 18% to 11% by 2025, expansion of solar to 300MW by 2025, addition of 4.1MW biogas capacity by 2024, 12% efficiency saving in agriculture by 2030 and 8% efficiency savings in mining.
Mangwana further noted that Zimbabwe’s response to reducing greenhouse gases also include the introduction of carbon tax on all fuel, diesel and petrol imports, to ensure the importation of fuel with ethanol, and the protection of the country’s national parks and wetlands, which act as carbon sinks.
He noted that there is need for financial resources for Zimbabwe and other developing nations to achieve these goals.
“For the Developing Countries to be able to meet the needs of adaptation and mitigation programmes that slow down climate change, they would need to be financed and these should not be loans but grants. This is our world together. We are the smallest emitters yet biggest victims.”