Zimbabwe's main opposition Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC) is denying media speculation that it has reached a power-sharing agreement
with President Robert Mugabe's ruling party. The opposition party says the latest
talks on power sharing with the ruling ZANU-PF that resumed last Friday in
South Africa did not reach an agreement. The
MDC blames the ruling ZANU-PF party for speculating on reaching a power sharing
peace talks are, however expected to continue despite a deadlock on the power
sharing deal. Nelson Chamisa is the spokesman for Zimbabwe's main opposition
MDC. From the capital, Harare he tells reporter Peter Clottey that although the
party is committed to the talks, its stance on the power sharing deal remains
reason why they (the MDC negotiating team) went to South Africa was to have
bilateral consultations with the South African team as instructed by President
Mbeki. At no time did we have a face-to-face meeting with the negotiators of
ZANU-PF. It was basically to try and articulate our position and to check if
there has been any change of circumstances or facts on the ground vis-à-vis the
whole dialogue process. But as it is there hasn't been any change," Chamisa
said the main bone of contention has been the issue of power sharing.
are deadlocked on key issues around the issue of power. We have said it is
unheard of to have a prime minister without powers to execute the business of
government and that was the case, they (ZANU-PF- didn't want Mr. Tsvangirai as
prime minister to have powers, to chair cabinet to have power to discipline
people who do not perform in cabinet. And we have had a situation where Mr.
Mugabe has had bable authoritarian powers compared to Mr. Tsvangirai's flat
file of responsibilities. So, that remains the bone of contention," he said.
denied the MDC is power hungry and entrenched in its position during the
stalled power sharing talks.
objective for us to participate in this negotiation process has been to achieve
three major things. The first one was to have a transitional dispensation and
of course under the circumstance to have a referendum and to have a people
driven constitution. The second item was then to have a situation whereby we a
program of national healing and restorative justice across the whole country.
And the third issue has to do with the professionalization of the institutions
of the state that has been so partisan and biased in a bludgeoned fashion. And
those three things are only possible if we have sufficient and power and
leverage to execute those problems," Chamisa pointed out.
said President Mugabe's ruling party has a history of not being totally
committed to living up to its side of bargains in negotiations.
are dealing with ZANU-PF. ZANU-PF has a legacy of manipulating competitors or
manipulating partners," he said.
said although the opposition MDC won the last presidential election, it is
still committed to finding salting solution to the country's crisis.
know that we won the election on the 29 of March. Ideally, and naturally, the
president is supposed to be Mr. Tsvangirai, but we have said we are prepared in
the spirit of magnanimity to climb down so that we have dialogue with Mr.
Mugabe who lost election so, that we have some soft landing of the crisis… and
we are motivated by our desire to respond to the issues affecting Zimbabweans,
the issue of food, the issue of the humanitarian challenges people are
currently encountering. We wanted to respond to them and this is why we are
still in the dialogue," Chamisa pointed out.
power-sharing negotiations reportedly stalled over how executive power should
be shared by President Mugabe and MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai, who refused to
sign an agreement that would have made him prime minister two weeks ago.
Tsvangirai has protested against the proposed deal, saying it did not give him
enough executive powers in government.