Zim deal delayed over cabinet posts

Failure to agree on how to divvy up cabinet posts delayed the signing of a deal between Robert Mugabe and Morgan Tsvangirai, a person close to the negotiations said Sunday evening.

On Sunday, the two sides continued to bicker over cabinet posts. ZANU-PF is adamant that the MDC should take over the ministries of finance and trade and the opposition is declining the offer. MDC also wants to take local government,foreign affairs but ZANU PF insists on holding on to those.

The MDC also wants the Central Intelligence Organisation to be reformed before they take office in an all-inclusive government arguing that its structure and operations as they are now will seriously impede the smooth day to day business of the government

The MDC has already conceded on that the security ministries, Defence and State Security are left to ZANU PF after insistence by the Joint Operation Commands but they will be deputized by the MDC. However the MDC will take over home affairs and justice.

JOC members also wanted assurances that the MDC will not take away farms that were distributed by the government in the chaotic land reforms and the MDC had to release a statement affirming that it will not reverse the land grab.

An “MDC government would ask the international community and multilateral lenders to help compensate farmers whose farms were confiscated by Mugabe’s government since 2000?, the MDC said in an e-mailed statement on Friday.

In a related development Metro has established from sources in the Mutambara led MDC faction which controls the crucial 10 seats in Parliament that the party’s secretary general Welshman Ncube will likely take up a single cabinet post offered to them in the government not the leader of the formation Arthur Mutambara.

The faction will have two posts in the inclusive government one in the cabinet and another deputising another key ministry and Bulilima MP Moses Mzila Ndlovu has already been earmarked for it.

There was a flurry of activity at the Rainbow towers where the MOU was signed two weeks ago as Mbeki met Tsvangirai and Mugabe separately.

Meetings were earlier held at state house and at the South African embassy with the expanded mediation team and the principals met Mbeki in the afternoon until this evening.

There are unconfirmed reports that invitations have already been sent out to diplomats and other guests who should attend the ceremony when the power-sharing deal is signed.
Zimbabwe Metro

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