South African President Jacob Zuma is making a visit to Zimbabwe to try
to unblock outstanding issues of the political agreement that led to a
power-sharing government between President Robert Mugabe and Prime
Minister Morgan Tsvangirai. He will again join talks with Zimbabwe's leaders.
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change has
several problems it has repeatedly said it wants fixed. Among them is
its accusation that President Robert Mugabe made key senior
civil-service appointments before the formation of a unity government.
Movement for Democratic Change has communicated with the Southern
African Development Community, which mediated the unity government
deal and guarantees the agreement. The Zimbabwe party said it was
concerned by Mr. Mugabe's reappointment of Central Bank Governor Gideon
Gono and choice of Attorney-General Johannes Tomana, a public supporter
of Zanu PF.
Mr. Tsvangirai says he is also concerned about the
arrests of MDC legislators, and the failure of Mr. Mugabe to swear in
MDC provincial governors and Deputy Agriculture Minister Roy Bennett.
senior political scientist at the University of Zimabwbe, Eldred
Masunungure, says he believes Mr. Zuma, as chairman of SADC, has been
late in addressing obstacles to full implementation of the political
He says ongoing arrests of MDC legislators shows the
behavior and attitude of the police has not changed, and because Mr.
Zuma's leadership of SADC is coming to an end this is a "scary" time
But Mr. Tsvangirai says he remains hopeful Mr. Zuma's efforts will bring finality to outstanding issues.
Zuma is not coming here as prosecutor or a judge, but as chairman of
SADC and guarantors of the agreement," he said. "All he wants to see
is the agreement implemented and on that score I am very optimistic."
In parliament in Cape Town, President Zuma confirmed he will be discussing matters of concern raised by Mr. Tsvangirai.
between the principals who signed the Zimbabwe political agreement, Mr.
Mugabe, Mr. Tsvangirai and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara, are
to begin early Friday with President Zuma.