Mutambara not resigning as deputy prime minister

DEPUTY Prime Minister Professor Arthur Mutambara will not be resigning from his government post to open way for new MDC leader Professor Welshman Ncube

The former leader of the MDC was replaced last month by Prof. Ncube during the party’s Congress.

The new leadership of the MDC reolved to reassign Prof Mutambara to a lower level portfolio to make way for Prof Ncube to become deputy PM.

Reports from Harare, Zimbabwe’s capital, say Prof. Mutambara has communicated to President Mugabe that he is not presently thinking about resigning from the inclusive Government.

It also emerged yesterday that MDC was not considering a pull-out from the inclusive Government as reported by some private media houses.

MDC has also not  formally communicated to President Mugabe their recommendation that Prof Ncube replace DPM Mutambara in the executive.

A source close to DPM Mutambara yesterday told state media that the ex-MDC leader had last week communicated to President Mugabe that he did not feel he should take the lesser role of Regional Integration and International Co-operation Minister as asked by Prof Ncube.

The source was quoted as saying: “DPM Mutambara has had a talk with President Mugabe after the latter indicated he would only make the changes that Professor Ncube wants if there was voluntary resignation.

“While I am not at liberty to divulge the full details of the conversation, the gist of it is that DPM Mutambara is not thinking about resigning. He is presently out of the country and will be back (in Zimbabwe) at the weekend or early next week,” he said.

Mugabe has indicated that he will not be in a position to replace Mutambara with Ncube, unless he resigns.

Prof Mutambara’s confidential statement to Mugabe is likely to put him in a collision course with Prof Ncube.

“The feeling of the Committee was that the office of the DPM should be occupied by the party’s most senior official,” said Ncube after an MDC Executive Committe meeting.

“This should not be viewed as a demotion. It’s only that we are new to democracy. It happens in a democracy. If at one time you lead, the next you follow.”