25 July 2009: Mugabe Threatens To Boycott Healing Process If Makoni Invited
Robert "The Solution" Mugabe looks sideways at Tsvangirai to see reaction to the joke he had just cracked yesterday at the launch of the so-called "Healing" process at a 5 star hotel in Harare. Mugabe and Tsvangirai gave two widely differing speeches, with Mugabe, who threatened to boycott the event if Dr Makoni was invited, insisting that the process started at Independence and that what he wanted was unity and not really healing or reconciliation or truth
The Solution and his sidekick, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, launched a weekend of "National Healing" yesterday in Harare at their favourite 5 star hotel in Harare.
At the beginning of the occasion, to which Mavambo and Simba Makoni had originally been invited, Mugabe cracked a joke that had Tsvangirai rolling with laughter. As Mugabe cracked the joke, he looked sideways at Tsvangirai to gauge reaction.
He was mighty pleased to see his prime minister responding as he should, rolling with laughter.
Mugabe, who had just arrived and been handed a folder containing his statement, said as the two leaders stood at the podium:
"Ini ndatarisa mikova yese, ndava kutoziva pekutiza napo vakange voita zvekuConstitution." Which means: "I have scanned all the exits and I know which way to bolt if they repeat what they did at the Constitutional Conference."
It also emerged yesterday that Robert "The Solution" Mugabe had threatened not to attend the event yesterday if the invitation that had been sent to Simba Makoni was not withdrawn.
The invitation to Mavambo had been sent to Makoni by the Prime Minister's Office. Mugabe got wind of it on Thursday and made it clear that if the MKD leader attended, he would withdraw.
I understand Mugabe also explained that the presence of "riff-raff" (referring to smaller parties and civil society) was the reason he boycotted the opening of the Constitutional Conference in Harare last week. Mugabe was due to give a keynote speech at the Conference, which was temporarily suspended after it was disrupted by his favourite nephew (his sister's son, Patrick Zhuwao) and others.
The healing event itself yesterday, of course, was a mockery of the continued harassment of MDC MPs, officials and supporters.
Even as the leaders launched this thing, an MDC-T supporter from the Uzumba area was languishing in hospital, barely able to speak, having been beaten thoroughly in her village by ZANU PF supporters.
The ZANU PF supporters who did this are still abroad, walking freely in their area. No arrests, no reprisals, nothing.
Meantime, Roy Bennett, who is awaiting trial for plotting to "overthrow" The Solution (indispensable and irreplaceable, is what Tsvangirai also called Mugabe in an interview with the BBC last month), appled to go to South Africa on business, but was denied permission and the courts refused to give him his passport back.
To Mugabe, this is not about healing at all. What he wants is what he calls unity (think Dr Nkomo and ZAPU). He made this clear when he said the process he and Tsvangirai were launching yesterday started at Independence.
What he would like is for the MDC-T, MDC-M and all the other parties in Zimbabwe to buy into the ZANU PF way of running the country, to "unite" behind him because, as the founding president of Zimbabwe, he is above the law and above eveybody else.
By the way, it is still the case in Zimbabwe today that Mugabe IS the law. Our Constitution still says that Mugabe can "declare anything done legally to be illegal and anything done illegally to be legal."
There is no sincerity at all around this issue. Mugabe is not serious and Tsvangirai continues to indulge him.
Just so you know, as I finished typing the sentence above, electricity went in my area. Nothing has really changed, even as The Solution, The Prime Minister and their government spend more than US$20 million on travel and car hire, services continue to suffer like this.
For the last two weeks, one of the major companies in Zimbabwe, for instance, Datlabs, has had its operation severely disrupted, so much so that they stopped production. The reasons given were that they did not have electricity and had also run out of ingredients.
So much for "Change you can trust" - the platform upon which Tsvangirai campaigned in March 2008, a campaign during which he also said if you voted for Makoni, he would give your votes to Mugabe.
It turns out that it is he, Tsvangirai, who has now sold ALL the votes you gave him to Mugabe and is now the president's Chief Public Relations Officer.
The more things change.........