Sunday, January 18, 2009

Zimbabwe's Mugabe stopped making sense long ago

We already know that Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has no intention of giving up any power to the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, even though his party lost last March's election. So, the ultimatum Mugabe issued Sunday, reported in state-controlled media, is meaningless and will neither deflect worldwide pressure for him to resign nor stop opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai from demanding power. Mugabe's rhetoric about setting a deadline is likewise unbelievable, unless he is planning to throw the opposition party in jail. "This is the occasion when it's either they accept or it's a break," Mugabe was quoted as saying in the weekly Sunday Mail, referring to an interim agreement reached in September, according to the Reuters international news service. "After all, this is an interim agreement. If they have any issues they deem outstanding, they can raise them after they come into the inclusive government." But it is Mugabe who has breached the agreement by refusing to hand over control of key ministries. Mugabe and MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai plan to meet with the presidents of South Africa and Mozambique and with mediator Thabo Mbeki on Monday. MDC spokesman Nelson Chamisa told Reuters that the party agreed not to join any unity government without equitable sharing of cabinet posts. The international community wants the two sides to settle their differences and turn their attention to a growing humanitarian crisis in Zimbabwe, which has seen its economy collapse and is now suffering from a cholera epidemic.

No comments: