Mugabe admits Zanu-PF impotent in face of sanctions

2009-09-17 13:07

President Robert Mugabe has finally conceded publicly that

Zimbabweans, including Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and his party, do not

have the power to remove the restrictive measures imposed on him and his

political inner circle.

Mugabe has long been dangling “sanctions” as one of the “only two

outstanding” issues stifling the Global Political Agreement (GPA), and has

maintained that the onus was on Tsvangirai to “implement” that “outstanding GPA


Yesterday Mugabe told investors attending a two-day mining

conference in Harare that the inclusive government, which he headed together

with Tsvangirai, was powerless in the face of sanctions.

“We are pleading for sanctions to go. Ours is a mere prayer. We

cannot do more than that,” Mugabe is quoted in the state-owned Herald newspapers

as saying.

Mugabe also assured potential investors that his government would

soon change it’s black empowerment legislation to avoid the wholesale seizure of

mines as happened with farms.

Zimbabwe’s inclusive government is teetering on the brink of

collapse because of bickering over issues of the GPA. The agreement was signed

by Mugabe, Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara on September 15 last year.

Mugabe has not appointed provincial governors and has refused to

swear-in Tsvangirai’s candidate for the post of deputy agriculture minister as

directed by the GPA.

The 85-year-old autocrat has violated the agreement by unilaterally

appointing his loyalists to key government offices of attorney general and

central bank governor.

He has continued to fuel violent farm invasions in blatant

disregard of the GPA and, with similar provocative arrogance, allowed the

harassment, including arrest and jailing, of Tsvangirai’s


Last Sunday Tsvangirai said his party could no longer continue to

tolerate Zanu-PF’s arrogance and warned Mugabe that he was misjudging him at his

own peril.

He is reported to have told Mugabe at their meeting on Monday that

his continued participation in the inclusive government was now a matter to be

decided by his party.

“One of the things I have told President Mugabe is that, until

there is a progress report, this matter is out of my hands ... The future of the

government is now with the people,” said Tsvangirai.

The meeting between Mugabe and Tsvangirai on Monday is said to have

been tense and lasted about 10 minutes before ending abruptly.

The nations that have slapped Mugabe and his inner circle with the

targeted sanctions visited Zimbabwe last week and told Mugabe that Tsvangirai

had no power to influence the removal of those sanctions.

It would appear from Mugabe’s admission yesterday that it has

finally dawned on him that Tsvangirai cannot tell sovereign Western nations to

change their policies on Zimbabwe.

“But Mugabe is, however, in full control over the issues that he

remains to do in fulfilment of the GPA,” said Professor Eldred Masunungure, a

renowned Zimbabwean political scientist.

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