Mugabe Launches Investigation Of MDC Ministers
It turns out the recent upsurge in violence against the remaining white farmers has been sanctioned by government in a top secret document that was presented to the cabinet at the end of August this year. That document has now been leaked to the Times of South Africa, sparking an investigation into MDC ministers, who are suspected by ZANU PF of leaking it.
Harare, Zimbabwe, 20 September 2009
Robert "The Solution" Mugabe on Friday ordered an investigation of all MDC ministers in the Inclusive Government after a cabinet paper was leaked to the Times of South Africa.
The paper that was leaked to the South African newspaper is on land invasions and it was presented to cabinet at the end of August by Herbert Murerwa, the ZANU PF Minister in charge of lands and resettlement.
It was supposed to be a secret paper. Added to this, because it was presented to cabinet and deliberated there, it is supposed to be protected by the Official Secrets Act.
Murerwa calls for the intensification of the land grabs in that paper, saying that the removal of white farmers must continue, especially now that there was an Inclusive Government. He argues that not doing this will be seen as a "reversal of the land reform programme."
He even warns about "protests and violence" if the land invasions do not continue.
It is this paper, it is now believed, that is informing the escalation of moves to evict white farmers remaining in Mashonaland West, such as the Campbells in Chegutu and the other farmers from the group that won a court case at the SADC Tribunal.
Mugabe takes leaks from cabinet meetings very seriously and it is extremely rare to see leaks from there. The last time information was leaked from a cabinet meeting, it was to be The Zimbabwe Independent.
The editor of that paper, Vincent Kahiya, as well as one of his senior editors, Constantine Chimakure, were immediately arrested and are now before the courts charged under the Official Secrets Act.
Mugabe wants to know who gave them the information.
This is why the leak this time has been to a South African newspaper. Government can not arrest South African journalists, even though the Sunday Times is widely distributed in Zimbabwe and sells more copies than the local Sunday papers, especially those owned by the government.
The probe into MDC ministers that Mugabe has ordered is being conducted by the the former Minister of Defence, Sydney Sekeramayi.
So angry was Mugabe on Friday that I understand he has now suggested that ZANU PF ministers start holding their own secret cabinet meetings at which real government business will be discussed. He says the MDC is already running a parallel government anyway.
Should he manage to finger the minister or ministers responsible, then ZANU PF would have found another angle from which to try and force the MDC out of the Inclusive Government. Those responsible will almost certainly be arrested and charged, which would throw the MDC and Tsvangirai into a quandary.
Only last week, Mugabe told ZANU PF Youths gathered in Harare that the white farmers remaining on their lands must leave immediately and make way for black farmers who have been given Offer Letters by the government for those farms.
He said: "I am saying 'please, please' now, but that will stop." Clearly, he was informed by that document from Mrerwa and was giving notice that he would soon escalate the fight with the remaining white farmers.