While Zimbabwean parliament ponders the possibility of impeachment for President Robert Mugabe, regional leaders are speaking out.


Botswana president Ian Khama

Amongst those openly calling for Mugabe to step down is Botswana’s President Ian Khama. He has written an open letter to Mugabe in which he calls for him to “be sensitive to the wishes of the people” and do the “honourable thing” by resigning.

Mugabe is under serious pressure after being placed under house arrest by the military last week. The military insists that it is “not a coup” but a “bloodless correction”.

The 93-year old leader was widely expected to announce his resignation in an address to the nation on Sunday night, but did no such thing. Instead, he gave a long, rambling speech which was later alleged to have been swapped.

Zimbabweans have taken to the streets in unprecedented displays of anti-Mugabe sentiment recently. The message is clear: the people have had enough. And didn’t Mugabe always say he will go when the people say he must?

Read Ian Khama’s open letter to Mugabe below

Dear President Mugabe,

I am writing this open letter to you which I am aware is not the normal method of communication between leaders.

Mr. President, I am writing to appeal to you to be sensitive to the wishes of the people of Zimbabwe and to do the honourable thing by voluntarily relinquishing power as the President of Zimbabwe.

My appeal is necessitated by an unprecedented situation currently unfolding in Zimbabwe whereby your own party, ZANU-PF, is calling for your immediate resignation and is in the process of instituting impeachment.

The people of Zimbabwe have for a long time been subjected to untold suffering as a result of poor governance under your leadership. It is therefore my conviction that by vacating the Presidency, this will usher in a new political dispensation that will pave the way for the much needed socio-economic recovery in Zimbabwe.

I therefore reiterate my appeal to you to honourably step aside, if you really care for them, as you profess, and if you cannot find it in you to do so, then as a Christian do so in the spirit of our Lord in order to usher in a new period going forward of unity, peace and prosperity for Zimbabweans and allow your country to be the economic powerhouse it is capable of being.

Yours sincerely,

[Signed]

Lieutenant General Dr Seretse Khama Ian Khama
PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF BOTSWANA

Source: The South African

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