Mugabe on Friday lashed out at gay rights activists, hostile European countries, and a defiant opposition as the country celebrated independence for Britain in 1980.
Mugabe, a revolutionary-turned-administrator who is in his 90s, delivered the hour-long speech to tens of thousands of supporters who showed up at the sprawling National Sports Stadium at the capital Harare’s west suburbs.
As in the past, the Zimbabwean leader did not least try to hide his disgust of the enemies.
He hit out at European countries that did not recognize the landslide victories he and his Zanu-PF’s scored at last year’s presidential and parliamentary polls.
“Europe is full of lies. Europe of yesterday is gone that Europe of today has no principles,” said Mugabe, who and his wife remain on the EU’s sanction list since 2002. “Europe will never ever accept a Zanu-PF government in this country.”
He also accused the West of promoting gay rights in Africa and in particular cutting short aid to Uganda over the country’s passage of an anti-gay law.
“Let Europe keep their homosexual nonsense there and live with it. We will never have it here. The act (homosexuality) is not humane,” Mugabe said. “Any diplomat who talks about homosexuality (in Zimbabwe) will be kicked out. There is no excuse and we won’t listen to them.”
He warned the local gay rights group, Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe, of recruiting followers from the country’s colleges and universities, calling the legally-registered group a secret organization that he was not aware of until recently.
On opposition, Mugabe said his government will not sit and watch while opposition members, with the backing of some nongovernmental organizations, try to destabilize the country.
The warning came as the main opposition party MDC-T, which has its stronghold in trade unions, threatened to stage nationwide demonstrations this week against the government for failing to create jobs.
The MDC-T’s national youth assembly spokesperson Clifford Hlatywayo was quoted in the media as saying that the party’s youths were prepared to take to the streets to display their anger.
“But I want to say we shall never tolerate acts of violence. If people go out to create violence because they are being instigated, I will unleash the security forces to deal with you,” Mugabe said. “The security forces are my weapon.”
He also castigated violence in the opposition party which has lately been riddled with internal fighting which is threatening to tear the party apart.