The leader of Zimbabwe's Movement for Democratic Change Morgan
Tsvangirai hailed the successes of the government of national unity. He
however pointed out that there were limitations to what his party could
do towards the democratization of Zimbabwe.
Tsvangirai who became Prime Minister of Zimbabwe earlier this year was
speaking at the opening of his party's two-day annual conference
Saturday. He pointed out that despite the problems inherent in
coalition governments, which he described as a marriage of convenience,
some progress has been made.
"In the 107 days since the
formation of the inclusive government the MDC within the government has
been instrumental in stabilizing our economy and bringing it back from
the brink of truly national disaster. In fact we have been able to
bring our rate of inflation from a world record breaking rate of 500
billion percent to minus three percent at the end of March," he said.
Tsvangirai added that since his party joined, the government schools
and hospitals re-opened and food is widely available in the shops.
Also, he noted, there has been an increase access by local and
international non-governmental aid agencies to the needy.
stressed that while his party is participating in the government, there
are still factions within the government that are not promoting
democratic values. He therefore asked Zimbabweans not to expect change
"The progress that we have made and are intent on
making is being undermined by those that are threatened by the
democratic changes contained in the global political agreement," he
said. "In addition, despite our party being committed to restoring the
rule of law, our members continue to be victims of political
persecution. Our goal of restoring fundamental freedoms and human
rights is not yet achieved but we are moving in the right direction."
Tsvangirai also referred to the outstanding issues regarding what he
calls the unprocedural appointments of Central Bank Governor Gideon
Gono and Attorney General Johannes Tomana. Mr. Mugabe has been accused
of breaching the power-sharing agreement with Mr. Tsvangirai and his
MDC party by making these senior government appointments without their
input. He is demanding the dismissal of both men. Mr. Mugabe, along
with ranking members of his party and the military insist that Gono
will stay. The matter has now been referred to the Southern African
Development Community, the regional body that underwrote the agreement
that brought about the government of national unity.
Tsvangirai also addressed the chaotic and sometimes violent land reform
saying it should empower the majority of Zimbabweans and not be based
on what he called racist persecution that leaves the land fallow and