"I've Developed Chemistry With Mugabe" - Tsvangirai

To Morgan Tsvangirai, this is all that matters - laughing off the people's suffering with the dictator Robert "The Solution" Mugabe. Everything else is not an issue to him, even as the armed forces continue smuggling loose diamonds from Zimbabwe to fund ZANU PF and lavish lifestyles, even as his MPs face trumped-up charges of abusing farming inputs, even as Mugabe continues to drag his feet on implementing the swearing-in of Roy Bennett, as he raids ministries from the MDC, as he postpones the posting of ambassadors........this all does not matter because Tsvangirai says he has developed some chemistry with the dictator

Harare, Zimbabwe, 20 August 2009

Morgan Tsvangirai has told the Guardian of London that he has developed some chemistry with Mugabe and works well with the dictator, despite mounting evidence that Mugabe still continues to hold him in contempt.

"Over time, you develop some chemistry, you can't just go in and talk about business, you talk about personal issues," he says.

More worrying though, is Tsvangirai's assertion during the interview that he is not worried about the arrests of his MPs designed to reduce his majority in parliament. He says "I will just put up other MPs in their place."

He appears not to recognise that these are elections and that the seats that have been targeted are held in some instances by a margin of only 22 votes.

Asked about evidence of Mugabe's skulduggery, the Prime Minister responded impatiently:

"This is a perpetual suspicion of Mugabe. It is a template. People can't believe that Mugabe has any capacity to change."

He says this perception has nothing to do with "what we are building."

"I have no doubt that he himself is committed to see this through (sic)".

Asked about charges "from within your own party that you are giving too much ground", Tsvangirai responded:

"I am not bending over backwards. This is a shared compromise."

I suppose he should ask Roy Bennett about that. And Jestina Mukoko, and the MPs whom he says, if they are convicted on trumped-up charges, he will simply throw them into the dustbin and appoint others in his place.

It appears even Tsvangirai is choosing to put his head in the sand about this.

This should be worrying because it shows that the MDC and Tsvangirai have no strategy for countering this strategy now adopted by Mugabe.

The dictator holds absolute sway over ZANU PF and it is utter rubbish for the Prime Minister to believe that there are hardliners who would dare defy him if he ordered them specifically to fall in line with the new Inclusive government.

Mugabe continues to plot, to hold clandestine meetings in Helensvale and State House. Retaining all the powers and his network of patronage, he is still the ones egging on the so-called hardliners.

There is no doubt now that Tsvangirai is going the way of Joshua Nkomo, slowly being brought round to the dictator's point of view. The Prime Minister is looking out for himself, egged on by blind loyalists in foreign capitals who have no idea just how terrorised the rural areas remain and just how determined Mugabe is to play for time until he can deliver the killer blow.

The tone in the state media in the last month or so has now become openly hostile to Tsvangirai and the MDC.

Here is a sample of Headlines from the State media:

  • MDC-T Not Serious About Heroes

  • More Action Less Talk Please

  • MDC-T Using Inclusive Government To Further Regime Change Agenda

  • MDC-T Out To Reverse The Gains of Independence

What sort of powerful hardliner is in control of this media that even Mugabe can not order them to tone down or do away with this poisonous "publicity" against the MDC and the Prime Minister?

That is the real question.

Never mind the arrests of MPs. Never mind that MDC supporters who had their homes and property taken from them in the June presidential run-off are being arrested for asking for their homes and property back.

Some within the MDC-T have a point when they say that Tsvangirai is only looking out for his own interests now, that he is no longer working for the ideals for which hundreds of Zimbabweans have given their lives since 1999, when the MDC was formed.

It appears, as long as he sits in the Prime Ministerial office, holding no executive authority, he is content with the empty phrases of respect thrown at him by Mugabe.

As he told the Guardian: "We communicate (with Mugabe), we talk, we discuss."

And that is all they will ever do with Mugabe, because all his actions to date show that his agenda is different to that of the MDC.

Mugabe is living up to the statement he gave to his Central Committee after the signing of the agreement with Tsvangirai:

"We remain firmly in charge and we will not tolerate any nonsense from our new partners in government."

That says it all and should tell Tsvangirai who the real hardliner in all this is.

He just chooses to bury his head in the sand, but we will be proved once again when we are being asked to support him as tried to cover up for this gross negligence of the democratic project when Mugabe lets all hell break loose soon.

We shall refuse.


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