It has emerged that Mugabe remains the stumbling block in efforts to reach agreement on the outstanding issues in the GPA among the principals.
Mugabe, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and his deputy Arthur Mutambara met last week to discuss a report submitted by the negotiators but failed to agree on the main outstanding issues, which included the appointments of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor and the Attorney General and the swearing in of Roy Bennett.
They also remained streets apart on sanctions and the issue of foreign radio stations.
It is against this background that Mugabe, on his return to Zimbabwe from the official opening of the Fifa World Cup finals in South Africa announced through the state media that the facilitators would arrive in the country on Monday to help in the mediation process.
But one of the facilitators Lindiwe Zulu denied that they were due to travel to Harare saying there were never any such plans.
She said President Jacob Zuma had still not gone through the reports submitted to him by the political leaders in Harare.
She told Radio VOP “As you may be aware, the principals met and had lengthy deliberations. We have received the report and we are going through it. President Zuma will have to go through the report first and then he will decide what step to take next,” said Zulu.
She also mentioned that there was a lot of misinformation on the talks coming from Zimbabwe – a statement viewed as also aimed at Mugabe after his misinformation boob at the airport.
Presidential spokesperson George Charamba rushed to contain the situation and predictably rushed to The Herald to manage Mugabe’s misfiring. Charamba claimed in The Herald that the facilitators had cancelled their trip to Zimbabwe when infact they had never planned to travel to Harare.
“They have written to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs advising that they are no longer coming. The matter is no longer an issue. They have called it off,” claimed Charamba in clear contradiction to Zulu’s remarks in various media outlets on Monday.