Biti instrumental in Dabengwa removal from EU sanctions

JOHANNESBURG,- The latest disclosures by the whistle-blowing website, Wikileaks say Finance Minister Tendai Biti has been making recommendations to the European Union (EU) on which Zimbabwean politician or business person connected to President Robert Mugabe should remain or removed from the sanctions list.\r\n

The confidential cables of the US embassies abroad reveal that Biti has been working closely with the EU in the maintenance and partial lifting of the sanctions imposed against Zimbabwean government leaders and business people connected to Mugabe.

Wikileaks say despite Biti,s previous statements condemning the continuation of sanctions by the EU, he has been playing a double role on the issue.The cable, which originated from the US embassy in London, in January 2010 says the EU "decided to support … a minimal lifting of sanctions on Zimbabwe by delisting the eight parastatals requested by Biti."

The memo also revealed that Biti was instrumental in having Zapu leader Dumiso Dabengwa removed from the list: "UK ministers agreed to support within the EU the de-listing of (1) the eight parastatals requested by Zimbabwean Foreign Minister Tendai Biti, (2) any persons on the list who have died, (3) a Lebanese national (NFI), and (4) former ZANU-PF supporter Dr. Dumiso Dabengwa."

The confidential diplomatic dispatch put paid to claims that MDC-T has no control over the sanctions policy in Brussels.
It also shows the duplicity of the MDC-T within the inclusive Government.

Ironically, Biti’s MDC-T party has been involved in the EU-Zimbabwe political dialogue team which seeks to normalise relations (including lifting of Art. 96 of the Cotonou Agreement and sanctions) alongside progress in the implementation of the Global Political Agreement.

A separate confidential cable released last week revealed that MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai, who is also the prime minister in the inclusive Government, used a state visit to the US to plot regime change in Zimbabwe.

Last year the MDC-T said it has no control in the matter of sanctions after President Mugabe and his Zanu-PF party charged that the former opposition party had a hand in setting the sanctions and therefore should be held responsible for removing them.

Zanu-PF has maintained that it will not give in to anymore MDC-T demands as it was not playing its role in the lifting of sanctions.