23 July 2009: "Mugabe Should Not Be In Government At All" - Simba Makoni
Dr Simba Makoni has just finished an interview with SAFM, the Talk Radio station of South Africa.
During the interview, Dr Makoni told listeners, "The people of Zimbabwe did not elect Robert Mugabe on March 29 2008 and it would have been appropriate that he be not in government at all."
He said he was disappointed that the African Union endorsed Mugabe's presidency, saying they should instead have listened to what the people of Zimbabwe had said in March 2008 and not take into account the June "run-off" in which, "Mugabe beat his way back into the presidency."
While acknowledging that through mistakes made in negotiating with him, Mugabe is now part of government, the Mavambo leader said what was needed was for a truly democratic constitution to be put in place, "so that we can have free and fair elections that will produce a credible winner. I am certain that winner will not be Robert Mugabe."
Listeners also called in and asked Dr Makoni questions, one of which had to do with the return of Zimbabweans in the diaspora.
Dr Makoni told the caller: "When we normalise things and people enjoy their full freedoms, can express themselves without looking over their shoulders for a state security agent, then that will be time for people to come home. That time has not come yet."
He also demanded that a stop be put to all disruptions on "not just farms, but also mines (which have been invaded recently) and other sectors of the economy" that are disrupted in various way including inconsistent and unclear policies, some of which, surprisingly, are coming from this new Inclusive Government.
On ZAPU, the former Finance Minister said he welcomed the formation of the party, that "it is led by a man I respect very much, Dumiso Dabengwa and I am sure that there will be opportunities for us to work together in the future."
In reference to the national healing process that he campaigned on in the March 2008 Harmonised Elections, he said he still believes that this process is necessary but that it should be a process based on "full disclosure. It is appropriate that wrongs be restituted."
Dr Makoni also stated his vision for Zimbabwe during the interview, saying this country has to become "a 21st Century state and nation, a leading light in the region and on the continent."
The interview comes on the back of a meeting of the M.K.D. National Steering Committee, held on Monday 20 July 2009 at which the process of rolling out grassroots structures was launched.
By the end of August, there will be substantive leadership teams all over the country "right down to the village level".
Once this is done, the inaugural conference of the party will be launched, at which the substantive national leadership of the party will be elected.