Chamisa calls for talks but who will kick them off?


Movement for Democratic Change leader Nelson Chamisa, whose party has repeatedly said it is not seeking a government of national unity, yesterday said his party and the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front should talk to steer the country out of its present crisis.

His counterpart, Emmerson Mnangagwa, said though his party was willing to talk this should not be about a government of national unity and the MDC must recognise that Mnangagwa is the President of Zimbabwe.

The attitude of the two leaders already puts spanners into the works of the talks, making one wonder who will kick off the talks which they both seem to agree are necessary.

According to Newsday, Chamisa told journalists yesterday: “We are not doing this for the love of power, but we are being pushed by the power of love.

“What we are going through as a country is nothing if we are to have dialogue as a people, and I hope our colleagues in ZANU-PF would find wisdom in this issue. We have stated five things which we believe should be the cornerstone for dialogue.

“The problems we are seeing are all temporary, we can solve them within weeks, the issues of cash, the issue of queues and job creation, can be solved through dialogue and confidence-building as a State. It is unfortunate that there is no talking, but we have talked about the need to talk.  But we have not seen any movement. It takes two to tango and (ZANU-PF) should show willingness.”

The five things that the MDC is demanding, however, kill the talks before they have even began.

The demands are:

  1. Immediately resolving and returning to legitimacy and the will of the people
  2. Undertaking comprehensive economic, political and electoral reforms
  3. Prioritising nation building and peace building
  4. End international isolation through collective engagement on the back of reforms
  5. Resolving the emergency economic and humanitarian situation

ZANU-PF is not likely to agree with the first condition because as far as it is concerned the legitimacy issued was resolved by the elections.

Mnangagwa clearly pointed this out yesterday when he addressed his party’s central committee in Harare.

“We had our peaceful and non-violent elections, and we won with a two-thirds majority,” he said.

“If you think we will form a GNU, then you should be dreaming.  You have to wake up as soon as possible because it is a nightmare. We will run the country for the next five years as provided for by the Constitution, and in the meantime, we are preoccupied with fixing the economy.”

His deputy Kembo Mohadi also set the record straight.

“We want them (MDC) to recognise that he is the President of Zimbabwe. They can treat him differently as the leader of ZANU-PF, but not when it comes to the country and we will not allow that,” Mohadi said.



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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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