Biti To Embark On Diplomatic Offensive


OPPOSITION People’s Democratic Party (PDP) leader Tendai Biti on Friday said he would soon embark on a diplomatic offensive, targeting African leaders to sensitise them on the Zimbabwean political and economic crisis and solicit for a lasting solution.

Addressing delegates at his party’s inaugural congress in Harare, Biti said he would next week meet with Sadc chairman, Botswana President Ian Khama, in a diplomatic jaunt that would take his leadership to South Africa, Mozambique and Tanzania among other African countries.

We are a Pan-African, social democratic party, hence we will seek to establish ties with opposition and ruling parties in Africa. We will send a delegation to meet with the African National Congress in South Africa next week,” Biti said. The PDP congress was marred by heckling among delegates after the announcement of the national leadership.

Former Water Affairs minister Samuel Sipepa Nkomo was elected deputy president, Lucia Matibenga (national chairperson) and Watchy Sibanda (deputy chairperson).

Former State Enterprises minister Gorden Moyo takes over from Biti as party secretary-general, while Tongai Matutu is the deputy secretary-general), Solomon Madzore (organising secretary) and Reggie Moyo (deputy organising secretary).

Jacob Mafume retained his position as party spokesperson.

But it was the election of Benson Ntini as treasurer-general and his deputy Julius Magarangoma that led to chaotic scenes before Biti took to the podium and ordered party members to accept the new leadership.