Zimbabweans free to study in US: Envoy

THE United States says Zimbabweans are free to study in the western country, including children of those on the sanctions list.

American ambassador to Zimbabwe Harry Thomas, said his government supported Zimbabwean children’s education ambitions, regardless of their background.

“Children (of individuals on the sanctions’ list) who would like to go and study are free to apply,” Thomas said.

“It’s open to anyone. Obviously, you would have to qualify and that’s never been a problem. They have to take SATs (admissions test), like I did many many years ago, and scholastic aptitude test, A’s and O’ Levels are another important factor,” he said.

“Maybe two or three weeks ago I had breakfast, first time ever with Patrick Mavros and he told me that there was a (army) general who had been on the SDN (Specially Designated Nationals or sanctions list) and his son had gotten into Harvard, and Patrick went to talk to an ambassador, one of my predecessors, about this kid and this kid went on to graduate from Harvard,” Thomas added.

Thomas said the United States ran several educational programmes for Zimbabweans who would want to pursue their education in the country.

“As you know, we have granted $7 million in scholarships this year alone. And these are Zimbabweans who are outstanding students, outstanding athletes and musicians. We also have the Mandela fellows 60 of whom are in the United States for a short course,” he said. His remarks come on the back of some Zimbabweans petitioning the United Kingdom to deport Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere’s son Takudzwa, who is studying at Swansea University.

Over 1 000 people have signed the petition created by Elliot Pfebve to have Takudzwa Kasukuwere ejected from Swansea University.

The petition blames Kasukuwere for the death of opposition activists, and destruction of Zimbabwe through unfavourable policies.

“Kasukuwere is minister of Local Government in Zimbabwe who has been targeting and arresting democratically-elected opposition mayors. Kasukuwere was instrumental in crafting the Indigenisation Bill which led to closure... of many foreign companies rendering thousands of workers in Zimbabwe jobless. Kasukuwere, MP for Mt Darwin South, was spearheading 2008 violence . . . He has been advocating for violence against the West in favour of the look East policy,” read the petition.

Comments (1)

Sanctions or travel restrictions only work where the people have a say in who governs them. Given that Zimbabwe is a dictatorship run with the propping of a military junta it means pressure needs to be put on those who govern and not on the citizens, the best way to do that is to affect those nearest and dearest to them i.e. their children. As it is these ministers & their president live in a bubble in total denial of the sea of poverty they have created and they can insulate themselves from the rot around them physically and or mentally because their children don't live in the country.

Galore - 2 August 2016

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