Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe donates 300 cattle to AU: report
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, 92, has donated 300 cows to the recently launched African Union (AU) foundation, according to a report.
The state-owned Herald newspaper said on Friday that Mugabe, whose tenure as the AU chair ended last month, reportedly made the pledge last year. The AU foundation was meant to dissuade the African continent from over reliance on external partners, whose donations came with strings attached, the report said.
AU Deputy Chairperson Erastus Mwencha, who was in Harare to receive the donation, praised Mugabe for sticking to his promise and showing "commitment".
Mwencha said the donation would help in capacitating the foundation, particularly in areas of health and education.
Mugabe, who is regarded as a staunch proponent of the continental bloc's independence was quoted as saying: … It just struck me that no one has ever thought of a gift by way of cattle to the AU and since we are cattle people why shouldn't we make a gift to the AU in cattle form? So we are very happy to make such a contribution. It (AU) is our organisation. And we hope the cattle, as will be decide now by the AU, will play some part in establishing the foundation, making the foundation keep going."
Mugabe's donation came at the back of a severe drought that has affected most parts in the southern African country.
According to reports, at least 19,300 have died due to shortages of water and pastures.
Furthermore, the country has asked for at least $1.5 billion from donors to help relieve nearly a quarter of the country's people from the brink of starvation.