Zanu PF backtracks on inclusive government

The Zanu PF caretaker government has begun to backtrack on the inclusive government by dithering to discuss contentious issues in line with the SADC resolutions.

Last week, a full SADC summit resolved that the negotiators of the three major parties meet "immediately" to consider the National Security Council Bill and the modalities and formula for the distribution of governors.

Today, the Zanu PF negotiators said they could not talk about the issue because they have no mandate from their leader who is attending the AU summit in Ethiopia.

We in the MDC are convinced that there is no intention on the part of Zanu PF to put all these issues to rest. There is no wish to consummate an inclusive government in line with SADC resolutions.

There is no wish to alleviate the suffering of the people of Zimbabwe through a negotiated political process. In short, there is no wish to tackle the outstanding issues as directed by the SADC Heads of State.

Zanu PF is panicking. It has been caught flat-footed. Zanu PF never budgeted that the MDC would agree to be part of the inclusive government and now they are in sixes and sevens while trying desperately to scuttle the deal.

For the record, the contentious issue of governors was supposed to be dealt with last Tuesday in South Africa. But the Zanu PF negotiators said their tickets did not allow them to stay a day longer and they returned with their principal to Zimbabwe. On Wednesday, nothing happened as they said they were preparing for the budget.

On Thursday, preliminary but inconclusive discussions took place before the Zanu PF negotiators said discussions should break to enable them to attend the budget, which Zanu PF again unilaterally presented against the spirit of the inclusive government.

The Zanu PF negotiators then suggested that discussions on the matter be deferred to today ahead of the passage of Constitutional Ammendment number 19 on Thursday, but true to culture and tradition; they have shifted goal posts and are now saying they have no mandate.

Zanu PF is spoiling to scuttle the inclusive government which SADC directed should be in place by 13 February 2009. We are ready to clear all outstanding issues so that we collectively confront the challenges facing the people of Zimbabwe. Zanu PF is not. We are ready to tackle cholera, unemployment and the collapse of basic services such as education and health. Zanu PF is not.

We are ready to sort out the working conditions of civil servants so that our children go back to school. We are ready to save lives. Zanu PF is not. We are ready to recover this economy and to bring back confidence in our institutions. Zanu PF is not. We are ready to give the people hope and faith. Zanu PF is not.

We are a party of excellence. We are celebrating a decade of commitment, courage and leadership. We are committed to the Global Political Agreement but Zanu PF's acts of commission and omission risk derailing the smooth passage of Constitutional Ammendment 19.

The acts of insincerity also risk dislocating the swearing-in of the Prime Minister and his deputies and the formation of an inclusive government thereafter.

We derive our comfort from the unbridled support and loyalty of the working people of Zimbabwe, the poor and the downtrodden, our parents in the rural areas, our brothers and sisters in the urban areas, the students, and the church and minority groups.

Our wishes are anchored on the wishes and aspirations of the people of Zimbabwe who spoke unequivocally on 29 March 2009. The people are our compass.

MDC Information and Publicity Department