|The ZIMBABWE Situation||Our
thoughts and prayers are with Zimbabwe |
- may peace, truth and justice prevail.
Business Day 1st Edition: Nov 25 2002 07:26:30:000AM Jonathan Katzenellenbogen
International Affairs Editor
BOTSWANA's President Festus Mogae, the only president in the region to criticise Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, has done so forthrightly in the latest issue of the London-based African Business magazine.
In an interview with the magazine, Mogae said the Zimbabwe crisis would be difficult to solve because it amounted to a drought of good governance.
He also displayed frustration about what he said was an inability to bring pressure to bear on the country.
"We try to engage them. We are not the UK, we are not the US, we are not the European Union. We are just their neighbour. There are 14-million of them, there are less than 2-million of us," he told the magazine.
Mogae said his country was paying a growing price because of the Zimbabwean crisis with mounting numbers of illegal immigrants.
His government had put up, "security fences, enclosures to hold the illegal immigrants. Journalists came, photographed them and said there are concentration camps in Botswana," he said.
He went on to say that "these are just waiting places where, while we make arrangements with the authorities on the other side, we can look after them".
"What can we do? This is a humanitarian crisis. We are trying to handle it humanely as possible. But within the limits of our capacity, of our resources. We have no choice," Mogae said.