BY MIRIAM MANGWAYA
PRESIDENTIAL spokesperson George Charamba yesterday lashed out at outgoing United States ambassador to Zimbabwe Brian Nichols, saying his recent pledge to facilitate US investments into Zimbabwe were unbelievable.
Charamba’s utterances followed recent comments by Nichols during the Post Reconstruction Trade Mission to Mozambique and Zimbabwe meeting which was held virtually on Monday last week, where the envoy promised to mobilise US investors to invest in the southern African country.
The Presidential spokesperson told NewsDay that Nichols, who is set to leave Zimbabwe soon to assume a new post in his country later this month, mentioned American investments into Zimbabwe as a trick to entice government to give him a dignified
“Here is a diplomat living throughout the twilight of his stint in Zimbabwe,” Charamba said.
“He is suddenly gushing hoodwinks just a few days before his farewell. What good does he expect to do for Zimbabwe in the remaining few days which he failed to do for all those years he has been staying in the country? His stay was dominated with hostility towards Zimbabwe. In Nichols’ case, it is easier for him to count the number of days he stayed in Zimbabwe than the good things he did for the country.”
Efforts to get a comment from Nichols yesterday were in vain.
But during the virtual meeting, Nichols said he was working with the US embassy in Mozambique to bring companies from the US to invest in Zimbabwe.
“Together with @USEmbassyMaputo and @TradeGov, we are bringing US companies together with potential local partners and the government in the first official US Trade Mission to Zimbabwe. American companies are world leaders that can positively influence Zimbabwe’s economy. Political and economic reforms are vital to attracting more of them,” Nichols said, in a speech that was also posted on the US embassy Twitter handle.
Charamba dismissed Nichols’ pledges, saying government would continue progressing despite the existence of “illegal” sanctions imposed on the country by the US government.
“Before media get too excited: The current US ambassador, Brian Nichols, is set to leave the country for a new posting in a few weeks’ time,” Charamba tweeted.
“He seeks to look and sound good on eve of his departure, hoping to overwrite the stupendous bad he did us over his serving years. We should not get too excited by his statements of fawned goodwill. Zimbabwe must press on with her programmes under conditions of illegal American sanctions so she secures her growth IN SPITE OF, not BECAUSE OF, so-called American benevolence. We were, are, continue to be wronged.
“There is no benevolence or olive branch that can be shown to us, as claimed by some sections in the media. America can only right-set her needlessly hostile policies towards Zimbabwe.”