Zimbabwe’s ousted president Robert Mugabe is of the view that the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and South Africa in particular let him down when the army forced him into retirement in November last year.
Speaking to journalists for the first time since his removal in Harare on Thursday‚ Mugabe said a bad precedent has been set.
“In a way I feel betrayed‚ but you also have to look at their (neighboring countries’) conditions. Besides South Africa‚ most of them did not have the capacity to intervene. South Africa could have done more‚ but it didn’t. They set a bad precedent‚” Mugabe said.
When Mugabe was holed at his private residence during the military operation‚ he spoke telephonically with then president Jacob Zuma who later sent a team of negotiators led by Minister of Defence and Military Veterans‚ Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula‚ and the Minister of State Security‚ Advocate Bongani Bongo.
At the time Emmerson Mnangagwa had fled to South Africa. He returned when Mugabe had been forced to resign.
But before returning home‚ Mnangagwa separately met with Zuma and his then deputy Cyril Ramaphosa.
Meanwhile‚ responding to interviews granted to international media houses by Mugabe‚ President Emmerson Mnangagwa said his former boss is free to do as he pleases since he resigned from office constitutionally.
“On 21 November 2017‚ former president Robert Mugabe tendered his resignation in terms of Section 96‚ subsection 1 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe. He is entitled to express himself freely‚ as in the case of any private citizen‚” Mnangagwa said.