Have You Any Idea How Far Mugabe Has Gone?
Robert "The Solution" Mugabe, seen here waiting to swear in Morgan Tsvangirai at State House in February this year, has now lost it completely, threatening Tsvangirai after the SADC meeting and unilaterally rescinding all commitments he had given to the Prime Minister, such as with the Ministry he had stolen from Nelson Chamisa of the MDC, the swearing in of Governors, posting of ambassadors and all the other things that are considered outstanding.Harare, Zimbabwe, 11 September 2009
Robert "The Solution" Mugabe told the SADC leaders gathered in Kinshasa this week that they should "leave Morgan Tsvangirai to me. I will deal with him. We have a government in Zimbabwe now that can address all our concerns."
This is the reason why SADC failed to take any action. This is why the SADC Communique after that Summit said nothing about an Extraordinary Summit to be held in Mozambique as announced by the MDC.
This is why even the SADC Troika will not meet as Tsvangirai seems to have been led to believe by some regional leaders.
Besides, even if they were to meet, the Troika, comprising Angola, Mozambique and South Africa, will come down so heavily on Mugabe's side that the dejection in the MDC ranks (as the Financial Gazette put it on it front page yesterday) will reach alarming proportions.
But, government operations in Zimbabwe remains secretive, even when this is uncalled for. No one is being honest with the people of Zimbabwe. No one is telling you just how bad the situation has now become or how far Mugabe has gone.
So, you really have no idea, for instance, just how perilous this Inclusive Government is. It is hanging by a thread. In fact, it is gone in all but name.
On the day he returned from the DRC, Mugabe spoke to Tsvangirai, threatening him over the issue of sanctions.
Mugabe's exact words, apparently, were that he was now going to instruct Zimbabwe Television to compile footage of all MDC officials who have ever called for sanctions and pressure to be put on Mugabe and his government.
The president further threatened that he would instruct the state television station to play that tape montage every hour, on the hour, from now until Christmas.
Mugabe is livid that Tsvangirai is still being coy especially about calling sanctions "sanctions" and that he refers to them instead as "restrictive measures".
Mugabe told his own circle that he was dead serious about this.
He claimed to someone I subsequently spoke to yesterday that the Prime Minister already knows that not a single one of his outstanding issues will be addressed. According to my source, Mugabe says he told Tsvangirai that he, Mugabe, had done all the giving in and this was now at an end.
The dictator is also said to have asked Tsvangirai what he has done since he got into government. Tsvangirai apparently referred to his trip overseas to drum up support for the Inclusive Government, to which Mugabe claims he retorted that the trip had only managed to bring in money for Tsvangirai's NGOs, whom he now say are also guilty of spiriting any money they get offshore, while people suffer and he, Mugabe is blamed.
The relationship between Mugabe and Tsvangirai has degenerated so far that it is now reminiscent of the old days when Tsvangirai was treated as Public Enemy Number 1.
Of course, Mugabe can not fire Tsvangirai, but he has now decided to make him feel as unwelcome as possible in Government.
Mugabe's Ministers in the government, as Tsvangirai will confirm as of this week, have now been instructed to drop the honorific title when referring to Tsvangirai. So, instead of him being Prime Minister Tsvangirai, he will simply be Tsvangirai or Morgan Tsvangirai.
The strategy is to send the message, according to my source, that "you are not our prime minister, only the prime minister of the MDC-T"
Arthur Mutambara is to have his hand strengthened. Already, there is talk of briefings that the Deputy Prime Minister is getting from very senior police commissioners and armed forces people. When I got wind of this, I phoned the MDC Mutambara and was told by one of their ministers on the phone "Arthur Mutambara is the Deputy Prime Minister of this country and he has a right to have any meetings with any government employee without having to explain himself."
Of course, it could well be that the mentioning of Mutambara is designed to smear him, something I would not put past the MDC Tsvangirai, especially in the position that they are now in.
So, the Inclusive Government exists only on paper at the moment. It has all but broken down, with Mugabe determined to sabotage any more progress because he believes that he has nothing more to lose.
Meantime, the people are none the wiser, even as Mugabe prepares for fresh elections to be held next year, certain that Tsvangirai will throw in the towel before long, considering the onslaught that has now been launched against him and his party.