EU legislator comments on lifting of restrictive measures

Geoffrey Van Orden, a British member of the European Parliament

By Nomalanga Moyo
SW Radio Africa
20 February 2014

A Member of the European Parliament has voiced concern over the decision by western powers to ease restrictive measures against Robert Mugabe’s key allies.

Geoffrey Van Orden, a prominent campaigner for freedom and democratic change in Zimbabwe within the European Parliament, commented on the EU measures and said: “There has been some movement in the right direction over the past year and this needs to be reinforced. However, there are still hundreds of incidents of human rights abuse each year and political freedom is constrained.

“The most recent elections were widely recognised as having been neither wholly democratic nor credible – despite being conducted in a relatively peaceful manner,” Van Orden said in a statement.

The MEP, who is banned from entering Zimbabwe, also criticised the EU’s decision to invite Mugabe to Brussels for the EU-Africa Summit in April.

He indicated that Mugabe should remain isolated, saying “real progress in Zimbabwe will not be made until Mugabe and those that hold on to his coat-tails have left power”.

Political analyst Joy Mabenge said the western bloc should use Mugabe’s present in Brussels to push him for more reforms.

“Like many Zimbabweans I believe the lifting of the targeted sanctions has more to do with the western powers’ economic interests rather than a belief that the ZANU PF government has improved anything on the ground,” Mabenge said.

On Thursday, rights campaigners the Zim Human Rights NGO Forum, said they were concerned about the EU’s plans to start channelling development aid directly through the ZANU PF government, from November 1st.

The group said there were worries within civil society organisations that the Zim government may use this to begin recriminations against the CSOs.

Mabenge said there was also the danger that millions of suffering Zimbabweans, who are currently reliant on donors for their survival, will be affected.

“The Zimbabwe government has proved to everyone that it cannot manage public finances let alone donor funding.

“The current corruption scandals prove the economy has collapsed, and there are absolutely no guarantees or measures in place to suggest that development aid will benefit deserving Zimbabweans,” Mabenge said.



7 Responsesto “EU legislator comments on lifting of restrictive measures”

  1. Chimbwido Warvet says:

    This is an issue that has been discussed at length and is very straightforward. It is either Mugabe attends the summit in his capacity as the Vice Chairman of the African Union or the European Union will go it alone. It is as simple as that.

    Well, the European Union had dithered or was nervously irresolute in inviting Mugabe but it soon discovered that without him, no summit could be convened in Brussels. A decision and invitation for Mugabe to attend the summit had to be arrived at and has since been extended to him by the European Union. It is too little too late to reverse the decision to serve the interests of a British member of the European Parliament, Geoffrey Van Orden, who is not very well known in the British circles and is not even a member of Parliament in the United Kingdom.

    • THE BLACK ARISTOCRAT says:

      Geoffrey Van Orden is very well know in British and European circles for sticking up for the interests of the Zimbabwean people, forced to live under the appalling yoke of Mugabe’s tyranny for the last 34 years!

      How do Zimbabweans know when Mugabe is lying ? His mouth is open !
      How do Zimbabweans know when Mugabe will next unleash his CIO and Police hit squads on the Zimbabwean people ? He will be speaking at a UN peace and security conference!

      How do Zimbabweans know Mugabe is looting the Marange diamond mines ? He very reluctantly and through clenched teeth passes on 2% of the total proceeds to treasury, telling everyone what a god given gift these diamonds have been to the saviour of our Nation !

      How do Zimbabweans know Mugabe will never allow an audit of his ‘one man one farm’ land reform policy? Because Mugabe took 14 farms for himself and six for his hated and despised wife !

      How do Zimbabweans know Zanu PF operates an apartheid health and education service ? Because the Zanu elite would not dream of using the services at home alongside their fellow citizens – they fly abroad at taxpayers expense for medical services and educate their children in expensive private schools in the West and East, while Zimbabweans are left to take their chances at the appallingly under-resourced Zimbabwean third world services.

      How do the mostly dirt poor unemployed Zimbabweans know that Zanu PF’s economic polices are bringing the country undreamt of wealth and prosperity? They can point up to the sky in awe as the Zanu elites $20m private jets fly over and say ” we may be in one of the poorest countries in the world, standing here in rags with a life expectancy of 35, starving, watching our children die of preventible diseases, regularly get beaten to a pulp by Mugabe’s secret CIO and Police hit squads, , BUT, ‘liberation’ has brought us the god given and enviable privilege of being able to watch our new masters in their expensive designer clothes fly around in these beautiful machines at our expense”!

      • Chimbwido Warvet says:

        The country is awash with the mineral wealth which is the envy of everyone abroad. If people enjoy their country’s wealth without invading other sovereign states as often happens in the west when they are hungry, and are able to buy expensive cars and aircraft for their enjoyment, the sky should be the limit. Bill Gates of the United States Richard Branson of the Virgin Trains in the United Kingdom do it everyday. Nobody asks them where they should direct their abundant wealth. If anything, they decide on their own as to where they should direct their financial resources without any influence from anybody. Zimbabweans have the same latitude to decide what to do with the abundant wealth they derive from their mines and farms.

        The late Cecil John Rhodes and Tiny Rowland to name just a few, who were British citizens, were billionaires in Zimbabwe by working our people to death. Why should Zimbabweans who are hard working on their farms, mines, industry and commerce not be millionaires when foreigners were billionaires in their country? Ndiwo unonzi udofo kuti mabvakure ndivovanonakirwa munyika yenyu imi musina chinhu. Unonzi uduzvi blaz

        • THE BLACK ARISTOCRAT says:

          If that’s the best you could come up with, i’d give up and resign your CIO position with immediate effect.

          Fact – Zimabawe is a failed bankrupt state and now the second poorest country in the world !

          Fact – nearly all of the wealth these criminals have obtained has not come from hard work but, from looting of the state’s assets

          • Chimbwido Warvet says:

            A country that was looted for close to two centuries of its natural and human labour but still have abundant resources can never be defined as the poorest country in the world. Of course, we are not so stupid to understand the philosophies of the western world. They regard the African continent as the poorest only because they loot and pillage raw materials to build their industries at our expense without transferring technology to the African states. That is a very tired story you are telling us, you monkey. We know the games you guys at that pirate radio station play and you can not fool anyone.
            The African continent is the only continent that has the wealth that makes merry go round and which has made the western world to be what it is today. They have nothing in terms of raw materials to sustain their industries. You can not be a serious hedge fund manager who is so foolish and idiotic to suggest that Zimbabwe is the poorest country in the world. By whose standard and which yardstick is Zimbabwe being measured, you monkey?

          • Zim 1 says:

            I f anyone is a monkey, it is you! back to your tree now and keep quiet.

          • Chimbwido Warvet says:

            All that I want to read are your arguments. The so-called black aristocrat brings to fore his philosophies that are obviously racist, illogical and irrational which can not influence the well read and informed Zimbabweans. You are ill-informed and educated. This explains why you can not write sense in making sound arguments. You need to shut the fck up if you do not want to face embarrassment.

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