Exiled businessman Strive Masiyiwa told United States ambassador to Zimbabwe James McGee that at least 25 ZANU-PF MPs were prepared to cross the floor to join the Movement for Democratic Change once the House of Assembly was convened.
He also told the ambassador that Arthur Mutambara and Welshman Ncube, leaders of the smaller faction of the MDC, had met Morgan Tsvangirai and had agreed on a coalition government that would provide the Mutambara faction with government positions and ambassadorships.
The comments came amid an election stalemate as the government withheld the results of the presidential elections leading to speculation that ZANU-PF leader Robert Mugabe had been trounced and the party was working at ways to rig the results.
Viewing cable 08HARARE295, SITUATION REPORT: STILL NO RESULTS
OO RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHRN
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O 081646Z APR 08
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 2740
INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY
RUEHAR/AMEMBASSY ACCRA 1898
RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 2021
RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 0589
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 1298
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RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 2077
RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 4508
RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK
RHMFISS/EUCOM POLAD VAIHINGEN GE
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 1153
C O N F I D E N T I A L HARARE 000295
AF/S FOR S. HILL
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ADDIS ABABA FOR ACSS
STATE PASS TO USAID FOR E. LOKEN AND L. DOBBINS
STATE PASS TO NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR B. PITTMAN
E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/08/2018
SUBJECT: SITUATION REPORT: STILL NO RESULTS
REF: HARARE 278 AND PREVIOUS
Classified By: Ambassador James D. McGee for reason 1.4 (d)
¶1. (C) The High Court Judge hearing the MDC’s application to
force the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to announce
electoral results ruled today that the matter was “urgent”
and began hearing the merits of the case. A decision is
expected as early as tomorrow; attorneys for the MDC are not
optimistic, given the highly-charged political nature of the
case and ZANU-PF’s influence over the courts.
¶2. (SBU) Rumors abound about the delay, although reliable
information is hard to come by.
–Some believe the delay in announcing results is due to the
fact that Tsvangirai has over 50 percent of the vote and
ZANU-PF is attempting to fudge the numbers to require a
–The Herald reported that five ZEC polling station
supervisors were arrested in connection with alleged voter
fraud, and there are reports that ZANU-PF is alleging fraud
in 16 constituencies and will seek a reelection as opposed to
–There are also rumors that Mugabe has taken the position
that a runoff would legally be required 21 days from the day
of the election rather than the date of the announcement of
results, that the ZEC is not prepared for a runoff election,
and that he intends to delay the announcement until the 21
days has expired and then announce the date for a runoff.
–We have heard that military units have been deployed to
rural areas to distribute food and to prepare voters to vote
¶3. (C) In a phone conversation April 8, Strive Masiyiwa told
the Ambassador that Arthur Mutambara and Welshman Ncube had
met with Morgan Tsvangirai and other MDC officials last
weekend and had agreed to a coaltion government that would
provide the MDC Mutambara faction with government positions
and ambassadorships. Mutambara and his people would back
Tsvangirai in a runoff election.
¶4. (C) Masiyiwa also told the Ambassador that at least 25
ZANU-PF parliamentarians-elect were prepared to cross the
aisle once the House of Assembly is convened and support the
MDC. Under Zimbabwe’s Westminister system, they would be
expelled from the party and then would presumably stand as
MDC candidates in by-elections.
¶5. (U) Harare remains calm and business proceeds as usual,
although people are anxiously awaiting election results.