Carter made the remarks during a meeting – Conversations at the Carter Centre – at his presidential library in Atlanta.
The statesman and his wife, Rosalynn, hosted the function, attended by a number of journalists, including this reporter , who have received fellowships from the Carter Centre for Mental Health Journalism.
During the Conversation at the Carter Centre, Carter and his wife reported back on work they have done during the past few months in the fields of election monitoring and health services provided to disadvantaged communities.
At an event at the Carter Centre last year, also attended by this reporter , Carter disclosed that the closest he had ever come to a fist fight was during a dispute with former SA President Thabo Mbeki.
Carter said Mbeki had refused aid for anti-retroviral drugs for HIV/Aids sufferers, claiming the virus had been a ploy by whites to destroy black people in SA.
Yesterday, Carter said he had been excited when Robert Mugabe was elected in the 1980s to replace the apartheid- style government in Rhodesia.
“But he turned out to have been a horrible and corrupt oppressor.” He said Mugabe had refused to let him and his Carter Centre delegation into Zimbabwe to monitor that country’s elections.
“He (Mugabe) has formed this fragile government with the opposition party. But it would be better for Zimbabwe’s future if it had honest elections and they let him leave … The future of Zimbabwe will be much brighter if they get rid of Mugabe.”