HARARE (Reuters) – Zimbabwe’s parliament on Monday backed down from its demand for former president Robert Mugabe to answer questions related to diamond mining operations during his time in office.
Mugabe had twice failed to appear before the mines committee of parliament and was given a final chance to do so on Monday, but the committee said in a statement it had now recused the 94-year-old former leader after consultations with the Speaker.
The committee did not give any more details.
A parliament official privy to the issue had told Reuters in May that it was unlikely Mugabe would appear before the committee because this was opposed by influential politicians in President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s ruling ZANU-PF party.
Mugabe said in March 2016 the country was robbed of wealth by diamond companies including joint ventures between Chinese companies and the army, police and intelligence services. He later expelled those firms last year and replaced them with a state-owned diamond company.