Monday, June 03, 2013

(NEWZIMBABWE) I won’t be removed by Britain: Mugabe
02/06/2013 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe has said he won't step down because of pressure from Britain and other countries for a change in government.

“You want me to retire? You do not talk of retirement when elections are coming, do you?” the 89-year-old president told Kyodo News in an interview in the Japanese city of Yokohama where he was attending and a thre- day summit on African development.

Mugabe will lead his Zanu PF party in elections to choose a substantive government this year, replacing the coalition administration he formed with rival Morgan Tsvangirai after disputed polls in 2008.

The Constitutional Court ruled Friday that the elections must be held by July 31.

“Retirement will come when the occasion demands it. But just now we are going to fight to beat the sanctions and to disgrace the Europeans and the Americans who thought we will collapse,” Mugabe added.

"I've thought about retirement, but not when the British are saying we want regime change. I won't be changed by the British. My people will change me.

“I do not retire from their government (Europeans), I am a Zimbabwean serving Zimbabwean people. If my people say I must retire, I retire. But they still want me to go on.

“So, who is saying I must retire? The same enemies who imposed sanctions on me? That’s the more reason why I will not retire and will not die also.”

The veteran leader again lashed at Europe for imposing sanctions against Zimbabwe.

“People of Europe are surprised why we are still alive,” he said. “They thought we were going to die, all of us, and this ‘monster’ called Robert Mugabe, they announced how many deaths of me? I don’t know now.

“I have ceased to count how many times they have said he has died, but here you are seeing me. I am not a ghost after dying so many times. A ghost of a ghost, of a ghost.”

He dismissed suggestions the sanctions under which he is banned from travelling to most Western countries had isolated him and his regime.

“The world’s two biggest countries China and India, over a billion people each, and the whole of Asia I can visit any country and so it’s not isolation,” he said.

“What do I have to do with those robbers of Europe? They lived on our natural resources, depended on our gold. Now they have exhausted their natural resources.

“Africa still has plenty of natural resources and my country still has plenty of natural resources.”

He also rejected allegations of electoral fraud and human rights abuses insisting the West had vilified his government for re-distributing land to the country’s majority blacks.

“They say I am a dictator because we took land from the Europeans. But we had an agreement with the British government that there would be land reform and acquisition,” said the Zanu PF leader.

“So, how does one become a dictator when one says we take our land because you do not want to pay compensation? We stand for people’s rights and don’t forget the people fought for the land and died for it.

“We had thousands of people killed in massive bombings; one incident claiming as many as 700 lives. We used to bury them in mass graves in Mozambique and Zambia.”

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