The British Government does not pretend to regret Robert Mugabe’s downfall because he is responsible for Zimbabwe’s oppression and economic failure, says British High Commissioner to Zambia Fergus Cochrane.

In a statement today, the British envoy noted that Mugabe’s resignation as Zimbabwe’s President yesterday was a moment of hope for that country, adding that Mugabe had squandered Zimbabwe’s remarkable potential to succeed.

High Commissioner Cochrane stated that he was hopeful that Zimbabweans would now achieve the brighter future that they deserved.

“This is a moment of hope for Zimbabwe. Robert Mugabe squandered the immense potential of a remarkable country. While Britain recognises his role in Zimbabwe’s struggle for independence, he was responsible for [that country’s] oppression and economic failure. The British Government does not pretend to regret Mugabe’s downfall. The UK hopes that Zimbabweans will now achieve the brighter future they deserve,” High Commissioner Cochrane stated.

Meanwhile, High Commissioner Cochrane urged Zimbabweans to prioritize the formation of a legitimate government through the holding of free, fair and credible elections.

“The immediate priority is to ensure that Zimbabwe has a legitimate government [and] the only way to achieve that goal is through free and fair elections, held in accordance with the constitution. To this end, and as Zimbabwe’s oldest friend, Britain stands ready to work alongside the country’s people, the international community and partners in the region such as the Republic of Zambia under the leadership of His Excellency President Edgar Lungu,” stated High Commissioner Cochrane.