Tsvangirai On Regional Diplomatic Offensive Mission

Mugabe and Tsvangirai have been haggling over full implementation of the GPA for more than a year after the inclusive government was put in place.

Although details of Tsvangirai’s meetings with the two presidents remain a secret, Radio VOP has it on good authority that the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader is losing patience with Mugabe who seemingly agrees to reforms in closed door meetings but ends up failing to meet his obligations.

Tsvangirai’s office on Monday refused to divulge details of the meetings but highly placed sources said he had fully briefed Zuma about the situation in Zimbabwe and expected some sort of action to be done in the next few days.

Tsvangirai travelled to South Africa and Botswana after snubbing Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad who was in the country to officially open the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) at the invitation of Mugabe. The Zimbabwean prime minister instead chose to meet Zuma and Khama.

“The Prime Minister managed to meet SADC (Southern African Development Community) facilitator President Zuma in Pretoria for more than three hours last week and he was among other things discussing progress in the on-going negotiations. He also expressed anger with Mugabe over his failure to fulfill agreements arguing that even if they agree on certain issues, Mugabe would renege whenever he meets his hardliners in Zanu PF.

“The problem with Mugabe is that he deceives people including presidents from the region by appearing to agree to certain things in meetings then dithering when it comes to implementation. Of course he usually makes a u-turn after meeting his hardliners from the army and the politburo.  This was what Tsvangirai was telling President Zuma.

“Right now we are a month away from the World Cup finals yet Mugabe is still trying to create chaos here so that we embarrass our neighbours, South Africa who are hosting one of the biggest sporting events of all time,” said the highly placed official.

Tsvangirai then proceeded to Gaborone where he met Khama, who as expected was reportedly sympathetic to the MDC leader’s concerns. The Zimbabwean prime minister is due to meet other regional leaders. The region is said to be losing patience with the Zimbabwe issue and if the deadlock continues, another SADC summit on Zimbabwe might be convened.

Mugabe is claiming that he will not move on reforms unless sanctions imposed by the West are removed while the MDC wants a number of outstanding issues implemented like the swearing in of provincial governors and deputy minister of agriculture designate Roy Bennett, the completion of the constitutional reforms and media reforms among others.