Oversight to power sharing deal undermined by funding shortage

Johannesburg - An oversight committee - deemed crucial to the success of Zimbabwe's power-sharing deal - is struggling to hold meetings because of a lack of money.

The Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee (JOMIC) was
constituted on 30 January 2009 by the Southern African Development
Community (SADC) Facilitation Team, to ensure that the signatories
abided by the terms of Zimbabwe’s Global Political agreement, signed on
15 September 2008. Ronnie Mamoepa, South Africa’s foreign affairs
spokesman, told IRIN that JOMIC was "up and running". Its guarantors
are the African Union and SADC, and its facilitator is former South
African President Thabo Mbeki. Elton Mangoma, a JOMIC co-chairperson,
painted a different picture. He told IRIN the oversight body was being
stifled by cash shortages, which meant it did not have a permanent
office to hold meetings, and had no administrative staff or travel
expenses.

The function of JOMIC, according to SADC negotiators, was "to ensure
the implementation, in letter and spirit, of the Global Political
Agreement", consider steps to ensure "full implementation", act as a
conduit for complaints, and serve to promote "an atmosphere of mutual
trust and understanding between the parties". JOMIC was established in
the wake of 15 September, when the political rivalries between Robert
Mugabe’s Zanu PF and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC) refused to subside and threatened to scupper the power-sharing
deal. The signatories to the deal – Zanu PF, the MDC led by Morgan
Tsvangirai and a break-away MDC party led by Arthur Mutumbura – each
have four representatives in the 12-person oversight forum. Among each
party’s representatives there is a "co-chairperson", who chairs the
oversight body every three months on a rotating basis.

Mutumbura’s representatives are Welshman Ncube (co-chairperson and
current JOMIC chair), Frank Chamunorwa, Edward Mkhosi and Priscilla
Misihairambi-Mushonga. Tsvangirai’s representatives are Mangoma
(co-chairperson), Elias Mudzuri, Tabita Khumalo and Innocent Changonda.
Zanu PF is represented by Nicholas Goche (co-chairperson) Patrick
Chinamasa, Emmerson Mnangagwa and Oppah Muchinguri. Mangoma said the
"three or four meetings we have had" were held in "good spirits", and
sought resolutions on "flashpoints" such as the continued detention of
MDC activists – including the recent arrest of deputy minister
designate Roy Bennett – fresh evictions of white farmers, and hate
speech in the media. He said apart from the cash shortage making it
difficult for JOMIC to travel to areas to investigate allegations such
as violence, Khumalo and Mkhosi, who live in Bulawayo, had been unable
to attend meetings in Harare because of the travel costs, as was the
case for Muchinguri, who lives in Mutare.

The Associated Press,

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