Tag Archives: COPE

Should Robert Mugabe Be Placed On Trial?

The decision by the International Criminal Court to issue a warrant for the arrest of Sudan President al-Bashir raises interesting questions as to whether Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe should also be placed on trial for crimes against the humanity of the people of Zimbabwe. South African presidential candidate, Mvume Dandala running on the Congress of the People (COPE) demanded the question of Mugabe’s crimes should be investigated. “Given the tragic situation in Zimbabwe I personally feel that if President Mugabe was taken to the International Court… he would be given a chance to actually explain himself.” There have been over 4000 deaths from cholera and at least 90,000 are infected due to the disastrous policies of Mugabe. Over three million have fled the land and the unemployment rate is over 80%, and this in a land, that once was among the richest on the African continent.

A major reason Mugabe was able to survive for so long was failure on the part of South African leaders to fight for the people of Zimbabwe. Instead they defended their old comrade. It is wonderful that finally South African leaders are beginning to think about the people of Zimbabwe and not about old friendships.

Finally-South Africa Has Political Competition!

A tragedy of the fight to end colonialism in Africa was causing those who led the anti-colonial movement to become the dominant power in politics and stifle the free exchange of ideas and power. Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe is the most vivid example of the fighter who opposed colonialism only once in power to display all the qualities of what he had opposed. The African National Congress(ANC) has split into two rival groups which means for the first time in South African politics there will be genuine political campaigns, the formation of alliances, compromise, and the emergence of diverse ideas on how to develop the nation. The Congress of the People(COPE) is composed of former ANC members and is now mounting a vigorous political campaign in order to obtain control of the government.

Opponents of COPE charge it seeks to end affirmative action programs, but COPE has responded it wishes to maintain the program but seeks changes to make it more effective. Unless a nation has an opposition party that is meaningful, there is no opportunity to make changes or offer alternatives to those in power. COPE is arguing the current affirmative action program contains evidence of nepotism and cronyism in selecting individuals for positions.

Hopefully, the presence of two parties vying for black votes will encourage coalitions containing parties which contain people of Asian or European backgrounds.