President Robert Mugabe on Saturday threatened that African countries would pull out of the United Nations (UN) if their demands for two permanent seats on the Security Council were not met.
Source: Charity begins at home Mr President – NewsDay Zimbabwe September 26, 2016
Comment: NewsDay Editor
The demands for permanent seats on the UNSC are quite legitimate and Africa has been campaigning strongly for reforms at the world body.
However, where we do not agree with Mugabe is on the threats to pull out of the UN and we hope this was just political grandstanding and rhetoric from the President, who always postures as the ultra-pan African.
Despite his grandstanding, Africa’s voice at world forums is dumbed-down by leaders like Mugabe, who are failing to lead their countries well and end up having to send the begging bowl to the UN.
What Africa instead needs is to strengthen itself and its structures and be united if they are to achieve anything at the UN.
That means upholding constitutionalism, respect for their respective national institutions and above all respect for their people.
It is, thus, hypocritical, for leaders like Mugabe, who are accused of human rights violations to demand UN reforms.
As it is, Mugabe and his Zanu PF party are stalling key electoral reforms, yet he has the temerity of demanding UN reforms.
As they say, charity begins at home and Mugabe should start by reforming some institutions in the country, failure to which, then he has no moral high ground to demand anything from anyone.
It is disingenuous for Mugabe to threaten that Africa is ready to pull out of the UN, when the continent is unable to look after its own affairs.
For example, the African Union (AU) is in a sorry state and cannot even administer its own affairs nor agree on peace and democracy initiatives on the continent, so the threat of pulling out of the UN is akin to seeing a speck in a neighbour’s eye yet Africa has a log in its collective eye.
Normally, we would have ignored Mugabe’s statements upon his return from UN. However, we fear this is becoming a dangerous trend where the President sulks and threatens to pull out of organisations that do not agree with him.
He unilaterally dragged Zimbabwe out of the Commonwealth organisation and threatened to pull out of Sadc when they censured him for failing to observe a roadmap to free and fair elections.
We hope that Africa ignores Mugabe’s calls, as the world moves towards globalisation, as the continent will be the biggest loser if it develops an attitude of throwing tantrums and its toys out of the pram always when things do not go their way.
Africa must fix its affairs first if it is to be taken seriously on the world stage.