Tsvangirai Meets Zuma As Mugabe Backpedals on Bennett Swearing-In
Ever masters at fooling themselves and relying on outsiders to do what their party can not do, MDC-T apologists and supporters were telling us all last year and even into this year that when Jacob Zuma, when he took over as president of South Africa, would read the riot act to Mugabe. Here are the two men warmly greeting each other last month in South Africa. Tsvangirai is in South Africa this week to meet Zuma and ask him to do something about the outstanding issues. Tsvangirai has gone quiet on Bennett and the Governors as his majority in parliament evaporates before his very eyes.
Morgan Tsvangirai, who I told you last week had been informed by the dictator Robert Mugabe that Roy Bennett would not be sworn in as Deputy Minister of Agriculture after all because the basis for dishing out ministerial posts in the Inclusive Government (the MDC-T majority in parliament), had now ceased to exist, betrayed the fact that this is indeed the case when he met with Zimbabweans in South Africa yesterday.
Tsvangirai told exiled Zimbabweans that he "would meet President Zuma" to ask him to intervene as SADC Chairman on the "outstanding issues."
Tsvangirai, as a result of Mugabe's position on the erosion of the MDC-T majority in parliament, is now mum on the issue of Governors and Roy Bennett.
Instead, the Prime Minister is now seeking to simply use his position as PM to get Mugabe to agree to reconsider the positions of Gideon Gono (Reserve Bank Governor) and Johannes Tomana (Attorney-General).
He is quiet on the other issues which his party still insists must be addressed, including Roy Bennett, Governors and Ambassadors.
Mugabe, I am told by diplomatic sources, told King Mswati by phone that his position is that if he were to swear in the governors "it would be because I want to, not because of the GPA, because Tsvangirai no longer has the majority in parliament to demand this."
He did not mention Bennett at all in his conversation with Mswati, suggesting that to him at least, Bennett is no longer an issue and will not be sworn in.
Only this past week, Zuma told the South African parliament that the government in Zimbabwe was working well and that there were no problems. He did say that "we are ready to intervene if the tenets of democracy are threatened."
Just what this means exactly is open to question but it is likely that the issue of "jobs for the boys" will not be seen by the South Africans and SADC as threatening democracy.
Although the MDC-T has written to SADC, (which letter was forwarded by President Zuma to King Mswati as head of the Organ on Defence and Politics), SADC itself says they have "not received official communication" that there is a problem in Zimbabwe.
The problem is this: SADC's position is that with the Inclusive Government in place now, there is JOMIC (the Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee) to oversee the Global Political Agreement.
SADC would only officially act on the matter if JOMIC, as the overseer of the Inclusive Government, writes to SADC to say there are issues that they as a body have failed to solve with regards to the GPA.
JOMIC has not written to SADC, with Mugabe saying the body can only write to SADC if all parties agree that there is a stalemate.
This has not happened, with Mutambara as well as Mugabe saying a stalemate has not been reached.
Tsvangirai shot himself in the foot by agreeing to the half-hearted promises to swear in Bennett and Governors sometime this August. He also capitulated on Permanent Secretaries, leaving Mugabe's partisan appointments in place.
Besides this, he has also capitulated on ambassadors, leaving all of Mugabe's appointments in place and only being given a few posts that had been vacant for some time because the countries they cover are not considered strategically important to ZANU PF and to Zimbabwe.