US Embassy driver caused Tsvangirai road crash

by Scott A Morgan

Just when one couldn’t expect the relations between the United States and Zimbabwe to get any more interesting, they did. It is no secret that President Obama has stated that the policy towards Zimbabwe is under review but the event that appears to be drawing politicians together may improve relations that have been cold since 2002.

The late Susan Tsvangirai. Picture by The Zim Daily

The late Susan Tsvangirai. Picture by The Zim Daily

The motor vehicle crash that resulted in the death of Susan Tsvangirai earlier this month touched a lot of people. Zimbabwe has a notorious record when it comes to highway safety over the last decade. There are reports that some of the highways are in poor condition along with some of the modes of transportation. But what is the most interesting thing is that the other vehicle that was involved in the crash was registered to the US Embassy in Harare.

Over the past few years relations between US Embassy Staff in Harare and the Zimbabwe Police Force were brutal. On more than one occasion Embassy staff (American and Zimbabwean) have had several encounters which were not considered to be civil. After one encounter President Mugabe actually stated that the US Ambassador could “go to hell.” On another occasion a Zimbabwean Police car grazed another Ambassador. The US Embassy has been active during political crackdowns by monitoring trials.

At the weekly Cabinet meeting a MDC member who was actually close to the late Mrs Tsvangirai suggested that an impartial investigation be made into this fatal crash. To this date there are a lot of suspicions of foul play in this incident. Even though the vehicle was registered to the US Embassy the driver was a Zimbabwean employee and is currently facing charges for this incident.

There are now reports that the CIA will conduct an independent investigation into this crash. This is interesting considering two crucial facts. First of all the CIA was accused by ZANU-PF of financing the MDC. Western support for the Opposition talk of neo-colonialism were hallmarks of previous Zimbabwean electoral cycles. So having the CIA in Zimbabwe may be chafing to the Zimbabwean Security Forces.

The second fact is on why the CIA is investigating this accident. The CIA’s mission should be espionage and other acts to benefit the interests of the United States. Any investigation of accidents should be the job of the FBI. The fact that the MDC has asked the CIA for assistance shows that despite having the portfolio for Internal Security in Zimbabwe’s Government they have some trust issues with the actions of Zimbabwean Police in the past.

Having the US sending a person to conduct an independent investigation in this crash can be seen as a desire for improved relations with the USA. Since the new government took over in Zimbabwe, there has been an increase in farm invasions in the country. Even though the policy is under review at this time, sanctions will remain in place for the foreseeable future.

It appears that the US wants to give this new government a chance to work.

The Author publishes Confused Eagle on the Internet. It can be found at

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