Botswana blasts Zanu PF for sabotaging Unity Government

GABORONE – Botswana has warned that the international community might withdraw pledges to help the reconstruction of Zimbabwe if President Robert Mugabe and his Zanu-PF do not stop violating the power sharing agreement.\r\n

Through a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Botswana blamed Zanu-PF for the woes afflicting the power-sharing agreement signed last September.

The statement said that the recent failure to release human rights activists does not augur well for Zimbabwe.

Invasion of farms

Botswana also expressed concern about the delay in making key appointments in the coalition government.

The statement condemned what Botswana termed illegal invasion of farms, which are still going on despite the formation of the coalition government.

Botswana said the invasions by Zanu-PF loyalists and operatives undermine the power-sharing agreement.

Botswana has been one of the most vocal critics of President Mugabe and Zanu-PF in Africa.

Postponed

Meanwhile Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai postponed a speech to parliament which was to review the work of the new power-sharing government in its first three months, a spokesman said Tuesday.

"It’s now next week," Tsvangirai’s spokesman James Maridadi told AFP without saying why the speech had been deferred. "We don’t have the date yet but it’s next week."

Government sources said Robert Mugabe is refusing to meet demands made by the MDC.

Tsvangirai and long-ruling President Robert Mugabe formed a unity government in February to ease tensions and tackle an economic crisis which saw inflation at one point peak to a conservatively estimated 231 million percent.

Analysts say the unity government has yet to make key reforms guaranteeing political and media freedoms, highlighted by the arrest Monday of two newspaper editors.

Three months after the formation of the new government the political parties have yet to resolve outstanding issues including the appointment of provincial governors.

Violence on white-owned farms continues, while activists from Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change have been detained on charges of seeking to topple Mugabe.

The fledgling government has declared itself broke and is unable to pay workers salaries, only managing a US$100 monthly allowance.

Schools and public hospitals re-opened after nearly year-long strikes by workers, but hospitals still have few drugs while teachers have renewed a threat to strike over their meager wages