By Nompumelelo Sibanda
FORMER Ministers Saviour Kasukuwere, Walter Mzembi and Kudakwashe Bhasikiti have all praised the appointment of experienced diplomat Frederick Musiiwa Shava to the post of Foreign Affairs Minister.
Shava, whose appointment will be confirmed after he is sworn in as Midlands Senator, replaces the late Sibusiso Busi Moyo who succumbed to COVID-19 early last month.
Shava, a former Cabinet Minister in the 1980s, served in Beijing as Zimbabwe’s Ambassador to China from 2007 before being redeployed to United Nations, where he became President of ECOSOC, a key wing of UN in charge of social and economic rights.
Walter Mzembi, who served for long as Tourism Minister and later on as Foreign Affairs Minister, has described Shava as an experienced diplomat who is well versed with Cabinet matters and should hit the ground running
“This is an appropriate appointment. He (Shava) is an experienced diplomat with multilateral U.N. and Sino geopolitical experience. Cabinet is not new to him; should hit the ground running.’
“Congratulations to Ambassador Shava and ED Mnangagwa,” said Mzembi, who is in exile.
Mzembi urged the opposition to not oppose just for the sake of it.
“Opposition politics is a wilderness journey and ineffective for a variety of reasons, one of them is failing to interpret issues. In Shava’s deployment, I don’t see what many are critiquing. Please, see the bigger picture of setbacks for military power-sharing deals,” added Mzembi.
Another exiled former Minister, Kasukuwere, said Shava has the appropriate credentials for his new role.
“I agree (that) Dr Shava is a balanced and experienced diplomat. He has the appropriate credentials to go with his new assignment and a matured approach to issues. All the best Dr Shava,” said the former Local Government Minister.
Regarding Shava’s involvement in the infamous Willowgate scandal, Kasukuwere said that was no issue to embellish Shava’s appointment into Cabinet.
“He was punished and pardoned. He spent quite a longtime as a back bencher and I will not judge him harshly seeing that he did show remorse and exercised extreme discipline over the years. He made a mistake and acknowledged his failings.
“No one is forgiving him, but he already is our top diplomat at the UN. The law took its course and he was pardoned. How many times should be face the music for a matter settled?
“I submit that he has the character to handle the nations external relations at this point in time. Some of the new faces have also failed dismally, unfortunately,” Kasukuwere added.
He reckoned that President Mnangagwa’s administration could benefit immensely from Shava’s credentials if the Presidency gives him enough legroom to operate.
“If the powers listened to him, they probably will benefit from his experience especially at the UN. He is a political senior and undoubtedly has the gravitas to push through reasoned positions. I doubt he will support some of the barbaric tendencies that are costing the nation,” said Kasukuwere.
Former Masvingo Minister of State Kudakwashe Bhasikiti, who is also no longer in Zanu-PF, said Shava’s appointment was one of the good things done by the Mnangagwa administration.
“I agree with Walter (Mzembi. Dr. Ambassador Shava is well grounded for the new post. He is one of the few with right credentials for the job. Zvagara munhu haanakiri tose.
“For starters, look at how the American Cabinet is made up of OLD TIMERS. Congratulations once more to my neighbour,” said Bhasikiti. – Zimbabwe Voice 🔺