Zimbabwe: Country Still in A Rut

FAIR COMMENT – When Zanu PF leader, Robert Mugabe and MDC President Morgan Tsvangirai signed a power-sharing agreement about a fortnight ago, there was happiness and anxiety locally and internationally. The exuberant mood was understandable.

The deal marked a move towards pulling the country out of its economic abyss. But there was also anxiety because few believed Robert Mugabe was genuine.

Indeed, during the signing ceremony, Robert Mugabe did not hide his bitterness at having been led to share power with his erstwhile bitter rival. He elected to rant and rave at the US and Britain, who he sees as twin axis of evil. 

As it now comes to pass, the Cabinet has not been named three weeks into the power-sharing deal. In fact, it is uncertain whether the Cabinet will be named at all.

Simply put, Mugabe’s Zanu-PF is not keen to share the ministerial positions equally with Mr Tsvangirai group as spelt out in the accord. On the contrary, Robert Mugabe wants the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) to join the government as a junior partner. This means that Mr Tsvangirai should not pretend to have any power as anticipated in the power-sharing document.

To use the words of Mr Tendai Biti, MDC’s spokesman, talks on power sharing have hit a deadlock. Unluckily for Zimbabwe, Mr Thabo Mbeki, who pulled the two rivals to the table, has since quit as South Africa’s President, from where he had forced through the deal.

International pressure has subsided and Robert Mugabe feels he can get his way. But this should not be.

The international community must join Zimbabweans in piling pressure on Mugabe to implement the power-sharing deal and, most importantly, push him to leave the scene altogether for the sake of our country’s stability.