President Mugabe has expressed his concern over negative reporting on African issues, saying journalists on the continent should be at the forefront of promoting positivity.
The President was speaking to journalists at State House in Harare yesterday after meeting his Equatorial Guinea counterpart Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, who arrived in the country last Friday on a three-day official visit.
During the lengthy meeting, the leaders shared notes on several issues, particularly the 26th African Union Heads of State and Government Summit that will take place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia next weekend.
To journalists, President Mugabe – who is the AU Chair – said journalists were stuck in the rut of reporting negatively on Africa while ignoring progressive accounts.
“And of course we also feel that our journalists should report us better than they have been doing all along, including yourselves. Report the good things that Africa is doing,” he said, adding: “There are many (positives), including football.”
President Mugabe said a major issue discussed during talks with President Mbasogo was the reform of the United Nations Security Council in addition to matters relating to the forthcoming AU Summit.
“So, on the eve of the meeting of the Africa Union, we saw it fit to discuss what our positions would be in regards to various matters: The issue of the reform of the Security Council and what our position as Africa should be; and that is what we would want to discuss also with others at the African Union meeting in Addis Ababa.”
President Mugabe said there were ongoing consultations to ensure consensus reforms to the Security Council.
“Consensus is always a matter we should fight for when an issue of great importance to Africa is under discussion. We are some 54 members, don’t forget, and to get the views of everyone needs a lot of discussion, a lot of consultation and that is what we are going to do. That is why we are the African Union.”
President Mugabe said the leaders had also discussed African peace and security.
“Then we looked at the issue of peace and security in Africa, terrorism, you know that
it has affected various countries and we were looking at how, together, we can manage to defeat this threat of terrorism on our continent…
“In a nutshell, what we have been discussing is when we have a panoramic view of African continent politically, we believe that all African countries should be in unison.
“Concerning the reforms of the United Nations Security Council seat, which actually Africa is gunning for, we are asking for two permanent seats on the Security Council of the United Nations. But if we cannot get two, at least we can be given one with full recognition as permanent members with the right to veto.
“With regards to economic situation, most of the situations are caused by the world crisis, we believe also …that at this stage, its such a manner that the western powers with economic power are the ones disguising this situation and crises of African nations are at a level where they can be destabilised.
“It’s true, we recognise that there are factions in the AU, there are divisions in the AU, therefore we have to invite our leaders to come together as one body,” he said.
President Mbasogo hailed the AU Chair as a man of “sound knowledge”
“Whenever I come here to visit my brother, I actually come to nourish myself mentally. He has very good and sound knowledge, he is one of the last real Pan Africanist we have left in the continent and these are the type of people we need to.”
Both leaders said they had also deliberated on ways to enhance the strong Zimbabwe-Equatorial Guinea bilateral relations.
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