MUGABE 1: TSVANGIRAI 0 – Soon after Morgan Tsvangirai "nullified" the appointment of Permanent Secretaries, I told you on this very blog of the meeting between Mugabe and Tsvangirai at which the dictator informed the Prime Minister that he was not going to fire Gono or the Attorney General, that Tomana guy.\r\n
I was right, my detractors were wrong.
On Wednesday, Morgan Tsvangirai and Tendai Biti ate humble pie.
Because, Tendai Biti was forced to hold a press conference at which he declared that he was best friends with the Reserve Bank governor.
Online newspapers, Tendai Biti said, were "awash with falsehoods about my relationship with the Central Bank Governor".
The truth of the matter is what I told you on this blog. You will recall that I did inform you that Mugabe had told Tsvangirai that there was no reason for the government to fire Gideon Gono. I also informed you that Mugabe had said the two men must first work together and, if Gono was found to be insubordinate, then, and only then, would Mugabe think about firing the RBZ governor.
The press conference was evidence of the truth of that story I gave you here. The two men are now "starting on a clean slate". Gideon Gono is not going anywhere.
Mugabe wins again, is what this means.
In the same story I am talking about, I also informed you that the Attorney General was not gonna go anywhere. Sure enough, a couple of days later, the AG was sworn in on the same day as the Prime Minister was sworn in as a non-constituency member of Parliament.
Effectively, then, the issue of Gideon Gono and Johannes Tomana is dead. Mugabe has triumphed. All the complaints we have been hearing from Morgan Tsvangirai about the need to "revisit" the appointments of the two men have now come to exactly nought.
At the press conference, Gideon Gono was careful to say that Tendai Biti was his boss. Which falls in line with Mugabe’s position to Tsvangirai that the only grounds on which the Governor could be fired would be if he proved insubordinate.
So he signalled that he would not go down that route and give Biti and Tsvangirai reason to demand his head from Mugabe.
It is important here to note that Biti and Tsvangirai objected to Gono on the basis of his past actions. Biti publicly called for Gono to be "put before a firing squad" during the election campaign of March 2008.
The MDC-T have always said that Gono used public funds to tilt the playing field in favour of ZANU PF, that he funded the horrific violence that surrounded the ill-fated presidential run-off election from which Tsvangirai eventually withdrew.
Of course, we don’t need to be reminded that, from day one, Morgan Tsvangirai has said that the "outstanding issues" in this government included the appointments of Gideon Gono and Tomana, the Attorney General. He was demanding that these appointments, made by Mugabe before Tsvangirai was sworn in, should be withdrawn.
Nothing of the sort is about to happen.
In other words, the scoreboard in that stand-off at the moment reads:
Mugabe: 1, Tsvangirai:0.
Soon, we will get public confirmation of the fact the Attorney General is also not going anywhere and that Mugabe’s "unilateral" appointment of him stands and that the MDC has also climbed down on that one.
So, for those western countries that met last week and demanded that a "credible team" be put at the Reserve Bank, they got their answer yesterday, the team that is at the RBZ stays and the donors and the MDC will have to live with that.
The MDC, through the presence of Biti at that press conference, has signalled that it will indeed live with this.
Which is, I guess, a slap in the face for the MDC’s supposed allies in the west.
The true impact of this is yet to be realised. But it is quite clear that the aid and donor money that Tsvangirai’s government is looking for will certainly not be coming.
Tsvangirai has signalled to the donors that he stands with Mugabe. Now it is up to the donors to announce whether they are happy with this and will help their man, Morgan Tsvangirai, who claimed during the March 2008 elections that he holds the keys to the unlocking of aid to Zimbabwe.
Where are those keys now?
Or have his western landlords changed the locks on him?