Zimbabwe Churches Call for Mugabe’s Resignation

mugabe-1Church leaders in Zimbabwe are calling for veteran leader Robert Mugabe to step down, to give the country an opportunity to revive its fortunes.

Mugabe is one of Africa’s longest-serving leaders, having been in power since 1980.  Despite his age, he is still a compelling speaker and recently announced he will stand for election again in 2018.

In a statement published on Tuesday, churches in Zimbabwe [as represented by the Evangelical Fellowship of Zimbabwe (EFZ) and the influential Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops Conference (ZCBC) among others], said the country deserved leaders who had the interests of the people at heart.

“As the church, we represent the voice of the people, especially the poor and the marginalized. We therefore feel that we should periodically convey some of the people’s feelings to assist our leaders in government in decision-making,” the statement said.

Over two thousand Zimbabwean opposition supporters have rallied last month in the capital Harare to call Mugabe to step down.

Zimbabwe’s economy has struggled since a government program seized most white-owned farms in 2000, causing exports to tumble.

Unemployment and poverty are endemic and political repression commonplace. Many Zimbabweans have left the country in search of work in South Africa.

Opposition leader Tsvangirai and his movement say Mugabe’s policies are responsible for Zimbabwe’s long-running economic problems and food shortages. Tsvangirai has lost the last three elections to Mugabe and has been charged in the past with plotting to topple the president.