The World Health Organization (WHO) has made Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe an official ‘Goodwill Ambassador’ just a month after he vowed that the killers of white farmers in his country would never be prosecuted.
The 93-year-old tyrant has been tasked by the United Nations agency — at least nominally — with helping to tackle non-communicable diseases, the BBC reports.
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus — an Ethiopian national and the agency’s first African leader — told a conference in Uruguay that he was “honoured to be joined by President Mugabe of Zimbabwe, a country that places universal health coverage and health promotion at the centre of its policies to provide healthcare to all.”
The global bureaucrat’s glowing praise drew scorn from Human Rights Watch, with chief executive Kenneth Roth pointing out that “Mugabe’s corruption [and] his utter mismanagement of the economy has devastated health services” in Zimbabwe.
“Indeed, you know, Mugabe himself travels abroad for his health care. He’s been to Singapore three times this year already.”
— Newsweek UK (@NewsweekUK) August 16, 2017
Margot Parker MEP, UKIP Deputy Leader and International Development spokesman, spoke out to criticise the appointment Saturday morning, telling Breitbart London: “This is an appalling choice. Mugabe destroyed his own health services, and his human rights record is abysmal.
“The UN and its agencies make a mockery of their charter — We should put as much pressure to bear upon the UN over these decisions as possible, both diplomatic and, if necessary, financial.”
The move comes just one month after the ageing Marxist vowed that people who murdered white farmers during mass land confiscations in the 2000s would never be prosecuted.
“Yes, we have those who were killed when they resisted. We will never prosecute those who killed them. I ask, why should we arrest them?” he sneered.
Mugabe ascended to power in 1980 amid widespread accusations of voter intimidation in the country’s first elections under universal suffrage.
These elections followed a long terror campaign initiated in 1964 by guerrillas armed, trained, and financed by the Soviet Union and the People’s Republic of China, against the governments of first Rhodesia and then Zimbabwe-Rhodesia, Zimbabwe’s predecessor states.
Unlike South Africa, Rhodesia was not an apartheid state, with the franchise being based on certain education, income, and property qualifications — as was the case the mother country, the United Kingdom, until 1918 for men and 1928 for women.
While most of the country’s wealth and property were concentrated in the hands of the white minority, who made up the vast bulk of the country’s electorate as a result, black Rhodesians were not entirely excluded from the life of the country.
In fact, by 1979 they actually comprised a majority of the soldiers fighting against Mugabe’s Maoist Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army (ZANLA) and rival nationalist Joshua Nkomo’s Marxist-Leninist Zimbabwe People’s Revolutionary Army (ZIPRA).
Pressured to accept a one person, one vote system by Britain and the international community in the 1960s, the Rhodesian government pointed to support from hundreds of tribal chiefs and headmen.
The Tory and Labour governments of the day dismissed these traditional leaders as placemen, leading to angry exchanges in which the chiefs accused the terrorists of winning support among the black youth by taking them to be brainwashed in Marxist training camps abroad, and burning uncooperative black families in their kraals.
The chiefs also challenged Prime Minister Harold Wilson’s foreign secretary to let them “call out our impis” to demonstrate they did have support in the wider black community.
Ultimately, the Rhodesian government issued a Unilateral Declaration of Independence from Britain in order to maintain the old system, but were brought to the negotiating table after 15 years of guerrilla warfare and diplomatic isolation by the international community.
Attempts to seek a compromise in which black representation would be increased as their contribution to the tax take increased were unsuccessful, as were attempts to reconfigure Rhodesia as Zimbabwe-Rhodesia, under black leadership but with Mugabe’s party excluded from elections and the largely white administration left intact.
Mugabe did not immediately target the white minority, which was supposed to be protected by Britain under the Lancaster House Agreement, following the transition — preferring to concentrate on crushing the Ndebele people in Matabeleland instead.
The Ndebeles were seen as rivals to Mugabe’s own Shona tribe, and tens of thousands were killed or herded into re-education camps by his elite Fifth Brigade, which was trained and led by North Korean officers.
When Mugabe did finally move against Zimbabwe’s white farmers, the result the near-total collapse of agricultural production in the country once regarded as the “Breadbasket of Africa” — followed by an economic depression which saw the country’s currency destroyed by hyperinflation, with a single U.S. dollar exchanging for 35 quadrillion Zimbabwe dollars by 2015.
Many white Zimbabweans ended up fleeing to neighbouring South Africa, although the future of that country’s besieged white farmers and impoverished white working class also looks increasingly in doubt.