PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe says as much as he was “surprised” by Donald Trump’s victory in the last election, he feels that the new US leader should be “given time” as he “may re-look the sanctions on Zimbabwe”.
This is according to an interview Mugabe had with the state TV to mark his 93rd birthday. The interview will be aired on Monday and Tuesday, the state media said.
“I don’t know. Give him (Trump) time,” said President Mugabe. “Trump may even re-look the sanctions on Zimbabwe.”
Mugabe said he had not wanted loser Hillary Clinton to win the polls because of her anti-Zimbabwe stance.
“I was surprised by his election, but I did not like Madam Clinton to win either,” said Mugabe.
He added, “You see, I knew she could slap sanctions on us as a legacy. Indeed (former US president Barack) Obama did that just before he left. Why did he have to do it? …Why didn’t he leave it to the incoming president to make his own decision? We’re just now under sanctions imposed not by Donald Trump but by Obama. What arrogance is that?”
In the interview, Mugabe said he had no problem with Trump’s idea of American nationalism.
“But anyway, when it comes to Donald Trump, on the one hand talking of American nationalism, well America for America, America for Americans — on that we agree. Zimbabwe for Zimbabweans,” said Mugabe.
Mugabe added that he was ready to work with Trump’s Republican administration. Trump is in the middle of a storm as he is criticised by all and sundry for his controversial statements and accusations against the media whom he accusses of spreading “fake news”.
Relations between Harare and Washington have not been good since the turn of the century largely due the human rights violations which characterised the land grab exercise as well as “electoral fraud”.
Clinton was one of the promoters of the laws that slapped Harare with sanctions. The sanctions, however, appear to have come in handy for Harare who routinely blame all their failures on the measures.