Motivated by his ability to rig elections in Zambia with impunity, Zambian ruler Edgar Lungu is currently playing African regional blocks, SADC, ECOWAS and the East African Community on the elections of the new African Union commissioner chairperson.
Last week, Lungu was in Tanzania where he assured that country’s president John Pombe Magufuli that Zambia will back the East African Community candidate Amina Mohamed of Kenya.
But typical of Lungu, during that same visit, he held a private meeting with Chadian President Idriss Deby and assured him that Zambia will back the Chadian candidate Moussa Faki Mahamat, according to Lungu’s aides. President Idriss Deby is the current chairperson of the AU and he was in Tanzania to campaign for his compatriot.
Despite making these pledges, Lungu knows very well that the Southern African Development Community is backing the candidate from Botswana Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi. During the last round, Zambia and the entire SADC voted for Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi.
“South Africa is bound by the decision of the countries of the south who have endorsed the candidature of Dr Pelonomi Venson- Motoi, the Foreign Minister of Botswana to succeed Dr Dlamini-Zuma. In this regard, the region is campaigning for her and South Africa is fully behind our SADC candidate for the position of the chairperson,” said South Africa’ Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane. on Monday 4 July 2016.
Even though Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi of Botswana got more votes than other candidates during the AU summit in Kigali, Rwanda, in July 2016, she did not get two-thirds of the votes as required by AU regulations so that election was called off. The new election will be held at the end of January 2017 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi is recontesting. SADC position has not changed, even though other regions are accusing SADC of selfishness by trying to impose another AU commission chairperson when the current chair Dlamini-Zuma is from the same region.
But Lungu’s treachery has not gone unnoticed.
South African president Jacob Zuma is not happy and has reportedly ‘summoned’ Lungu to explain while he is engaging himself in such monkey tricks and embarrassing the entire region.
Obviously Zuma’a summoning of Lungu is concealed as ‘state visit’ to sign agreements on agriculture and raising rabbits’ blah! Blah!
Lungu is expected to go to South Africa this Wednesday 7 December 2016.
But Lungu’s treachery is much more complicated.
The King of Morrocco is scheduled to visit Lungu soon.
Contrary to lies being told, the main reason the Moroccan king will visit Lungu is to convince him to support Abdoulaye Bathily of Senegal as AU commission chairperson.
Morocco quit the AU in 1984 when it was still called the Organization of African Unity, to protest its admission of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, also known as Western Sahara, as a member. Morocco still lays claim to Western Sahara. Now Morocco has applied to rejoin the African Union, and Senegal is one of the allies of Morrocco and is spearheading the campaign to readmit Morocco.
Zambia, under Lungu has already betrayed Western Sahara, the only African country colonized by another African country – Morocco.
In July 2016, Zambia revoked its recognition of Western Sahara, a country Zambia had fully recognized during the Kenneth Kaunda, Fredrick Chiluba and Levy Mwanawasa eras. Rupiah Banda’s treatment was flip flopping depending on which country gave his family more money.
Thus Lungu is playing all the four candidates by lying to each of them.
But Lungu’s treachery might impact negatively on the two Zambians who are vying for junior positions at the AU. Austin Sichinga and Albert Muchanga both Rupiah Banda’s boys are vying to be elected as Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development and Commissioner for Trade and Industry respectively. Another Rupiah Banda cadre Dora Siliya is currently in West Africa to campaign for these two using tax payers’ money. But once Lungu’s gimmicks are discovered, other countries may not vote for the Zambian candidates.