MDC say negotiators still discussing cabinet deadlock

The MDC led by founding president Morgan Tsvangirai has denied press reports that a deadlock over the sharing of cabinet portfolios has been referred back to party leaders by the negotiators.

Last week ZANU PF chief negotiator Patrick Chinamasa said a meeting between Mugabe, Mutambara and Tsvangirai took place but, the principals found the task too laborious, and referred it to their negotiators.’ The negotiators then met Thursday last week to try and break the deadlock. Weekend reports quoted Mutambara MDC Secretary General Welshman Ncube saying they too had failed to reach agreement and referred the matter back to their leaders.


But on Wednesday Tsvangirai MDC spokesman Nelson Chamisa said this was not true and that the negotiators were still dealing with the issue. The mandate to negotiate does not rest with the principals but the negotiating teams,’ Chamisa said. That deadlock can only be broken by the intervention of the facilitator upon the request being made by one of the parties,’ he added. Asked when this would be done he said they still felt the negotiators had not yet exhausted, all the domestic remedies.’ He said the SADC group and the African Union had acted as guarantors to the deal and should the impasse fail to be resolved they would be called upon to intervene.


Chamisa bemoaned the deadlock saying, people are suffering, people are anxious in terms of food, jobs, shelter and the challenge is supposed to be responded to by an all inclusive government.’ He said the MDC was willing to engage in a give and take approach to the cabinet division but that ZANU PF was adopting, a grab and take all mentality.’


Confusing matters on the deadlock are allegations that Mutambara MDC negotiators Welshman Ncube and Priscilla Misihairambwi Mushonga boycotted last Thursday’s meeting of negotiators. Sources told Newsreel the meeting was attended by Emerson Mnangagwa and Chinamasa representing ZANU PF while Tendai Biti and Elton Mangoma represented the Tsvangirai MDC.


In an interview with Newsreel on Wednesday Misihairambwi-Mushonga said they knew nothing about the meeting and could not have been expected to attend it. She said if it was a bilateral meeting between Tsvangirai’s party and ZANU PF, there was nothing wrong because, sometimes it makes sense to have a bilateral meeting.’ She also explained that it was those two parties who were failing to agree on the issue of the remaining 4 cabinet portfolios and if the meeting helped move the process forward, all the better. – SW Radio Africa News Stories 

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