Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has
dismissed as nonsensical a pronouncement by the United States that a power
sharing deal with the opposition wouldn’t work while Mugabe remains the
president. He said he would not stoop to international pressure to step down,
adding he would go to his political death to see the opposition rule Zimbabwe.
The president’s comments followed a statement by Washington that it had lost
confidence in the success of the power sharing deal with Mugabe as president.
Some political observers say Washington’s new stance would put pressure on the
Southern African region to take a stronger position against President Mugabe.
Glen Mpani is a Zimbabwe political analyst. He tells reporter Peter Clottey
that Washington is playing into Mugabe’s propaganda.
statement coming from Robert Mugabe is consistent with the stance that he has
taken that he is going to be rebutting everything that comes from the West that
he is the president of Zimbabwe; that he is going to seek a process to
legitimize the so-called victory that they got on the 27th of June,”
Mpani pointed out.
said Washington’s pronouncement would give Mugabe an excuse not to focus on the
problems facing ordinary Zimbabweans.
I think on the side of the comment that have come on the side of the American
government, while they have said in a previous statement that they don’t
recognize the Mugabe government, what they are also doing is they are providing
a side show for Mugabe to change the attention from the real issues within the
country and start responding to external issues. Rather than focusing on the
problems that he has created within Zimbabwe,” he said.
said there is reason to believe that President Mugabe is unwilling to equally
share power with opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai.
indicators within the country show fully well that he is not prepared to share
power. Going ahead to appoint the attorney general, the governor of the reserve
bank, the outright condemnation or the hate speech that comes out of his
speeches, is sign of a man who does not believe that they are in a power
sharing agreement. In fact for him, this is all about accommodating the MDC
rather than sharing power with the MDC,” Mpani noted.
disagreed that Washington’s new stance on President Mugabe would put pressure
on members of the Southern African development Community (SADC), especially
South Africa to be tough on Harare.
don’t think it would do that because what the South African government would
not want to be seen doing is that it doesn’t want to be seen as yielding to
external pressure. Remember the argument that Mugabe has been putting across is
that African countries that are independent are under external pressure. So,
for the South African government to be seen capitulating to that, that in
itself would alienate one, from the Zimbabwe government and two, it would be
regarded as not being Africa,” he said.
said Zimbabwe’s powerful neighbor seems to be ready to thwart any effort at
undermining Mugabe’s grip on power.
what the South African government is going to do is to continue to protect
Mugabe. Just like what they have been doing at the UN Security Council,
blocking any initiative to put more weight on the Zimbabwe government. So, I
think in a way it is retrogressive in that way that it emboldens the African
position that it was slowly peeling out of the African leaders,” Mpani noted.
described as a grave error Pretoria’s pronouncement that Mugabe as President
and Tsvangirai as Zimbabwe’s Prime Minister is the only way forward.
them to say that is the only solution I think is based on the option that is on
the table. But I think while they are saying that is the only option available
and both parties have said that they are willing to go into agreement they
should go beyond that and say what are the problems that have caused this
agreement not to work? And how should they address them? For them to be simply
saying they would want Mugabe to be the president and Tsvangirai to be the
prime minister does not resolve the problem. The problem is the way the ZANU-PF
government has arrogated itself the position of being the sole end of
leadership in the country. Those are the real problems,” he said.
talks between the ruling ZANU-PF party and main opposition MDC have stalled over implementing a power-sharing deal, which would
have left Mugabe as president and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai as the
Mugabe threatened early this
month to hold new elections in the next one-and-a-half to two years if the
power-sharing deal with the opposition arrangement failed.