Little GPA movement – two years on

bob_morgan_arthurHARARE This week marks the anniversary of the historic 2008 signing of Zimbabwes power-sharing agreement but there is no real sharing of power to talk about two years on.

It is now 24 months after the then South African president Thabo Mbeki flaunted a defective power-sharing agreement between President Robert Mugabes Zanu (PF) party and the two Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) formations as the panacea for Zimbabwes decade-long political crisis.

But still nothing has changed on the countrys political landscape only that Mugabe has perfected his game and has been outwitting his coalition and regional partners at every turn.

Political commentators say Mugabe, who was under pressure to equally share power with arch-rival Morgan Tsvangirai when he was forced to sign the global political agreement (GPA) on September 15, 2008, has clawed back lost ground and his party now looks to be in total control with the MDC on the back foot.

Default mode

From the beginning Mugabe did not want this thing to work, he wanted to buy time and as you can see now he is back to his default mode, said University of Zimbabwe political analyst John Makumbe.

The ageing Zimbabwean leader remains firmly in control of the levers of power.

His strategy has been to drag out the unity government, buying time to

rebuild his faction-riddled Zanu (PF) and his unilateral actions have

left the fragile regime in limbo while his opponents have at best been

able to only give muffled responses.

An analysis of the coalition government by pressure group Sokwanele

shows that at least 8 000 breaches of the GPA have been recorded since

the pact was signed two years ago.

According to the Zimbabwe Inclusive Government Watch published by

Sokwanele, the biggest breaches involved Article XI of the GPA which

deals with the rule of law and the respect of the Constitution and

other laws.

More than 2 000 breaches of this section of the GPA had been recorded

by the end of June this year, followed by more than 1 300 violations

of Article XVIII dealing with the security of persons and prevention

of violence.

Mugabe has openly incited his Zanu (PF) supporters to grab the

remaining farms owned by white farmers whom he accuses of working with

the West to plot his ouster from power.

200 farms raided

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has previously ordered the arrest and

prosecution of illegal farm occupiers but his word has largely been

ignored, with targeted white farmers reporting continuing invasions of

their properties and disruption of farming activities.

The Commercial Farmers Union says invaders have raided at least 200 of

the about 300 remaining white-owned commercial farms since the

formation of the coalition regime last year.

Other violations cited by Sokwanele include breaches of Articles VII

and XIII dealing with the promotion of equality among Zimbabweans, and

the politicisation of state organs and institutions.

Despite denials by Zanu (PF), the state organs such as the police

force and army have been heavily politicised, compromising their role

as non-partisan bodies.

Mugabe has also refused to swear in a top Tsvangirai ally, Roy

Bennett, even after the High Court acquitted him of the treason

charges for which he was arrested. The state has appealed against

Bennetts acquittal.

The 86-year-old Mugabe, who accuses Tsvangirai of campaigning for

imposition by Western countries of visa and financial sanctions

against him and top officials of his Zanu (PF) party, says he will not

change his stance on the growing list of disputes with the Premier

unless the former opposition leader calls for lifting of the punitive


Tsvangirai denies responsibility for calling for lifting of sanctions

and says instead Mugabe should allow democratic reforms in the country

to persuade Western governments to scrap sanctions.

Post published in: Zimbabwe News

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