Outstanding Issues To Remain Outstanding

Morgan Tsvangirai is seen here wearing his reading glasses as he delivers a speech at the "launch" of yet another 100 days of plans by the MDC-PF regime. Tonight, his office confirmed that there is no announcement on the outstanding issues. The Prime Minister, on this, has now managed to break three promises in one week. Good going, Morgan.

A few minutes ago I was told by the Prime Minister's Office that "there is no announcement on the outstanding issues scheduled."

The main news bulletin on State television is going on at the moment and nothing has been said about the matter, as can be expected. Instead, one of the main news items is the fact that the lawyer for MDC-T activists Gandi Mudzingwa and Chris Dhlamini, has been granted US$100 bail by the courts. He is charged with defeating the course of justice.

I told you earlier this week that Mugabe responded to Biti's "ultimatum" by saying, "No one threatens me." I also told you that he was now determined that no resolution of the outstanding issues is reached before the threatened May 17 MDC-T National Council meeting.

This has come to pass.

The Prime Minister is livid with Tendai Biti, because he believes that, were it not for that stunt of a press conference giving Mugabe an ultimatum, he would have sealed a deal with Mugabe by now. 

He gives both himself and the dictator too much credit.

Tsvangirai now believes that the best way to get anything out of Mugabe is to show him due respect both in private and in public, to avoid confrontation at all cost (and I mean ALL cost). But this strategy was scuttled by members of his own party who are now after his head, believing him to have been "bought" by the dictator.

Still, the situation in Zimbabwe today is that outstanding issues have not been resolved. Governor Fagan, Gideon Gono, and Prosecutor Shylock Tomana, remain at their posts. 

Nelson Chamisa remains Minister of Nothing-in-Particular (at least he has a cossetted Mercedes Benz ML into which he can retreat and sulk).

Permanent Secretaries (null and void) remain very much valid.

Ambassadors, First Secretaries, Provincial Governors and all the other issues that are sticking in the MDC-T's throat remain firmly lodged there tonight.

The MDC-T is proving very bad at agenda setting. They have spent the first 100 days of their MDC-PF regime fighting for space at the feeding trough, paying scant attention to the deplorable issues that are killing Zimbabweans as I speak.

As they squeal at the feeding trough, every time the MDC-T thinks it has elbowed one of the ZANU PF people out of the way, he runs off to complain to Brother Napoleon Mugabe, who, in this classic Animal Farm scenario, immediately takes a ministry away, or rushes to detain an MDC-T legislator or activist.

The dictator himself has spent the time ensuring that the MDC-T gets nothing of substance done. And they have played into his hands time and again.

The Prime Minister's office told me this evening "Zvatova zve next week" - meaning, "Maybe next week."


Maybe not.

As the Herald pointed out this week, Mugabe thinks it the height of absurdity for the MDC-T to be demanding a complete reorganisation of the diplomatic services, the civil service and the entire government when this "arrangement" of a GNU is supposed to be only temporary.

He still, like I keep telling you, insists that the MDC-T must simply ensure that they fix the economy while Mugabe and ZANU PF strengthen their structures, imprison MDC-T activists and basically push to regain the electoral upper hand they are used to.

Whether anything will be announced at the MDC rally to be addressed by Morgan Tsvangirai at the weekend in Masvingo remains to be seen.

The MDC-T has said it will not leave government. And that is the only thing the Prime Minister could do to precipitate a crisis and force Mugabe's hand if he feels very strongly about any of the outstanding issues.

It appears that he does not want to do this.

What he is achieving by staying put is less certain.

Money remains too tight to mention.

Services remain dismal if at all existent.

Instead of hunting down people like myself who are pointing out the futility of this MDC-PF regime, MDC-T supporters would be well advised to tell their PM and their leadership to forget about the struggle for posts and instead concentrate on delivering services for the people, on formulating policies that actually work and are different to the failed ZANU PF policies.

The fight that they have set up for themselves is untenable and the more they issue deadlines and play up "outstanding issues", the more egg they wake up with on their faces every morning.

But, of course, the MDC-T are ordained by God, and Tsvangirai is a Black Jesus. They know it all. They listen to nobody. 

So we will just have to keep pointing out the egg on their faces every morning.


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