On Tuesday, ICT minister Jenfan Muswere joined delegates at the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation Ministerial Alliance for Digital Nations 2023 summit being hosted by the United Kingdom.
Writing on Twitter, Muswere said:
The platform is meant to facilitate collaboration between governments and the ICT industry in addressing ICT issues for economic development.
It is the first time Zimbabwe has been invited to attend the conference and authorities in the southern African nation view the invite as a positive signal in its quest to be readmitted to the Commonwealth.
The late former president Robert Mugabe pulled Zimbabwe out of the Commonwealth in 2003.
His successor, President Emmerson Mnangagwa, is actively seeking re-admission to end Zimbabwe’s international isolation and claim a seat on the world stage.
Zimbabwe submitted a readmission application in 2018, but Commonwealth claims that the country’s chances of being accepted have been diminished by ongoing violations of human rights and official corruption.
Following an evaluation mission, however, a top official of the group of 56, primarily former British colonies, stated in November last year that Zimbabwe has made good progress for readmission.
The organisation’s Assistant Secretary-General Luis Franceschi, who headed the assessment team said:
Zimbabwe should be part of the Commonwealth. We are travelling the same road, hand in hand.
This was despite claims by the opposition and other groups that the human rights situation is fast deteriorating.
The UK summit currently underway is sponsored by the United Kingdom government and META, among others.
Raphael Mushanawani, CEO of the state-owned NetOne, travelled as a representative of mobile telecom companies in Zimbabwe.