According to President Zuma’s advisor quoted in the Press, the December negotiators' report sshowed that were still some outstanding issues to be resolved by the Principals. Two weeks ago the principals met and we received two contradictory reports on what they had agreed on the Police Commissioner Generals tenure of office.
So we do not even know even whether there is any agreement on the other issues that MDC President Morgan Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara reported had been agreed among the principals. We believe these opaque sessions behind closed doors, and the all-night SADC Heads of States meetings that come after them, while Zimbabweans are kept in the dark, are not helping us.
While we are not asking the principal to negotiate in public, we believe that Zimbabwean people have the right to know the positions that are keeping the principals apart, and prolonging their uncertainty and suffering.
We should have a clear statement from President Mugabe as well in a joint press conference about what it is that he objects to in Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s proposals, and he should reconcile his actions with the Zimbabwean constitution as amended by the Global Political Agreement.
What are these outstanding issues in the GPA and on the election roadmap that Ms Lindiwe Zulu thinks can be resolved by President Zuma going to Harare for a meeting, which they could not be resolved in the last four years of negotiations?
A statement from President Mugabe is necessary before President Zuma goes to Zimbabwe so that we, the affected, know what the deliverables of his visit are.
While we appreciate that President Thabo Mbeki, President Monthlante, and now President Zuma, have been seized with our country’s problem, we have seen them all going to Harare and coming out of meetings “success and challenges”, yet and we cannot assess whether or not they succeeded because we did not know what the deliverables were.
For Zimbabweans, now facing a typhoid outbreak, food shortages despite good rains, 95% unemployment, and a daily struggle just to get from one day to the next, nothing has changed.
Despite presidential spokesperson George Charamba being told on previous occasions that he is not a spokesman for the principals who could pronounce on their deliberations, he has apparently done so again, and pronounced contrary to what the principals say they agreed.
He has not been censured in any way. As MDC president Morgan Tsvangirai said last week, maybe he is doing so with the blessings of President Mugabe, while he is continuing to present that he is committed to the transition to democracy.
President Zuma’s impending visit comes as President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu (PF) hardliners are saying one thing and doing the opposite; stepping up violence against the MDC supporters. Youth leader Madzore remains incarcerated and two MDC activists were brutally murdered only last week, by Zanu (PF) activists.
An MDC branch treasurer in Harare was murdered on Friday by known Zanu (PF) youths operating under the notorious Chipangano wing, sponsored by Zanu PF through losing Zanu (PF) MP TendaiSavanhu, Zanu PF Harare provincial chairperson, Amos Midzi, and the MP for Harare South, Hubert Nyanhongo- a retired army colonel.
And in Masvingo MDC activist SharukaiMukwena woke up to discover that his granary on fire. He confronted the ZANU-PF youths who had set it ablaze and they attacked him and chopped off his hands before killing him.
Under the circumstances we demand a categorical statement from President Mugabe about the murders in Zaka and in Mbare this week, before President Zuma even gets on his plane to Harare. Otherwise we would say President Zuma has no respect for human life, if it is the life of MDC supporters.
We are also forced to conclude President Mugabe is making a mockery of the office of the SADC Facilitator and therefore SADC itself, and the AU which gave SADC the mission to resolve the Zimbabwean crisis more than five years ago, in May 2007 when SADC mandated President Mbeki to negotiate a political agreement the Zimbabwean parties.
SADC Troika meetings were held last week to discuss political and economic matters in the region, so why was Zimbabwe not being discussed there? Because President Zuma is still trying to resolve the crisis by himself? Or is he trying to hoodwink Zimbabweans with sugar-coated words that mean nothing?
How deep is his concern about Zimbabwe, in the face of the current assault on freedom of expression and assembly, and a growing crackdown on civil society and members of the political opposition? We now urge President Zuma to invoke his power to call in the African Union and the UN to come and help him to resolve the situation in Zimbabwe.
We demand that President Zuma treat the issue of Zimbabwe with the seriousness it deserves. That is why we are continuing with our mass action on Tuesday February 21 from 12:00 at the Zimbabwean Embassy on the Strand in London, and moving to the South African Embassy at 2:00pm.
Our comrades will be undertaking the same actions in America, mainland Europe, South Africa, and Australia. We hope Zimbabweans from all walks of life, and all friends of Zimbabwe will join us so that we can send a clear message to President Zuma.
Solomon Mashiri – MDC UK and Ireland Midlands North Chairman [email protected]Post published in: Africa News