Tomana a bigger issue than Gono


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President Robert Mugabe could not fire central bank governor Gideon Gono and attorney general Johannes Tomana because Gono still provided Mugabe with funds while Tomana was a useful tool to harass and distract political opponents.

This was said by Gorden Moyo who was Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office at the time.

He told United States embassy officials that the principals were deadlocked on the issue of Gono and Tomana and were referring this to the Southern African Development Community.

When asked why Gono in particular was such a non-negotiable issue with Mugabe, Moyo said it was two-fold: firing Gono would be an indictment on Mugabe’s presidency as everything Gono had done was with his blessing, and Gono was still finding illicit ways to get funds to Mugabe, party leaders, and security chiefs.

Moyo said that while Gono’s central bank authorities had been dramatically cut, he maintained his business interests -obtained illicitly through his tenure at the helm of the Reserve Bank- which generated income that he was distributing to Mugabe and key ZANU-PF players.

He cited gold purchases as an area where he continued to profit.

Moyo said Mugabe was determined to keep Tomana because he had proven to be a useful tool to harass and distract political opponents.

Moyo said that Tomana was actually a bigger issue than Gono, because of the extent to which he could undermine the rule of law.

 

Full cable:


Viewing cable 09HARARE447, GORDON MOYO SHARES INSIGHTS INTO CABINET AND TOP

If you are new to these pages, please read an introduction on the structure of a cable as well as how to discuss them with others. See also the FAQs

Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

09HARARE447

2009-05-29 14:45

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Harare

VZCZCXRO6023

OO RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHRN

DE RUEHSB #0447/01 1491445

ZNY CCCCC ZZH

O 291445Z MAY 09

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4543

INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE

RUEHAR/AMEMBASSY ACCRA 2852

RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 2971

RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 1410

RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 2234

RUEHDK/AMEMBASSY DAKAR 2599

RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 3019

RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 5460

RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC

RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK

RHMFISS/EUCOM POLAD VAIHINGEN GE

RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC

RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 2143

RHEHAAA/NSC WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 HARARE 000447

 

SIPDIS

 

AF/S FOR B. WALCH

DRL FOR N. WILETT

ADDIS ABABA FOR USAU

ADDIS ABABA FOR ACSS

STATE PASS TO USAID FOR J. HARMON AND L. DOBBINS

STATE PASS TO NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR MICHELLE GAVIN

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/29/2019

TAGS: PGOV PREL ASEC PHUM ZI

SUBJECT: GORDON MOYO SHARES INSIGHTS INTO CABINET AND TOP

ISSUES

 

Classified By: Ambassador James D. McGee for reason 1.4 (b) and (d)

 

——-

SUMMARY

——-

 

1. (C) Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s office,

Gordon Moyo, explained President Mugabe’s refusal to fire

Reserve Bank Governor Gideon Gono and Attorney General

Johannes Tomana. Firing Gono would be an indictment on

Mugabe’s presidency and he was still financially useful,

while Tomana was a useful tool for harassing the opposition.

Cabinet this week was dominated by a heated debate over

whether the MDC-T would retain control over donor funds.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Tsvangirai has been traveling to

ZANU-PF strongholds to build support ahead of an eventual

election. END SUMMARY.

 

——————————–

What’s Next for Gono and Tomana?

——————————–

 

2. (C) Minister of State Gordon Moyo met with poloff on May

29 and confirmed that the twin appointment issues of Reserve

Bank Governor Gideon Gono and Attorney General Johannes

Tomana had reached an absolute deadlock between the

principals, with President Mugabe refusing to budge. This

left the MDC-T no option but to refer the issue to SADC via a

letter to South African President Jacob Zuma. Moyo suspected

that SADC would not call an extraordinary summit for solely

this issue, but would instead push the issue to the SADC

Troika organ on politics, defense, and security.

 

3. (C) When asked why Gono in particular was such a

non-negotiable issue with Mugabe, Moyo said it was two-fold:

Firing Gono would be an indictment on Mugabe’s presidency as

everything Gono had done was with his blessing, and Gono was

still finding illicit ways to get funds to Mugabe, party

leaders, and security chiefs. Moyo said that while Gono’s

RBZ authorities had been dramatically cut, he maintained his

business interests –obtained illicitly through his tenure at

the helm of the RBZ– which generated income that he was

distributing to Mugabe and key ZANU-PF players. He cited

gold purchases as an area where he continued to profit.

 

4. (C) Mugabe was determined to keep AG Tomana because he

had proven to be a useful tool to harass and distract

political opponents. Moyo said that Tomana was actually a

bigger issue than Gono, because of the extent to which he

could undermine the rule of law.

 

———————————–

MDTF Big Issue in Cabinet This Week

———————————–

 

5. (C) Moyo told us that discussion of the administration of

the Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) was the primary issue

discussed at the May 27 Cabinet meeting. Moyo presented his

proposal that the prime minister’s office should represent

the government on the MDTF Policy Oversight Committee

–consisting of government, donors, the UNDP head, and a

World Bank representative who will identify projects and

deliver funds– at which the ZANU-PF ministers erupted in

opposition, sparking a three-hour debate. Interestingly, the

Qopposition, sparking a three-hour debate. Interestingly, the

Minister of Regional Integration and International

Co-operation, Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga of the MDC-M,

was ZANU-PF’s preferred choice to represent the government.

 

6. (C) The farm invasion issue has left Cabinet and is now

being addressed at the Council of Ministers which is

 

HARARE 00000447 002 OF 002

 

 

directing the land-audit process. Moyo said that two

Zimbabwean professors, Samuel Moyo and Mandivamba Rukuni,

would direct the audit to determine who held title in farm

disputes and eliminate multiple farm ownership.

 

———————————–

Tsvangirai in Campaign Mode Already

———————————–

 

7. (C) Moyo said that Tsvangirai has been traveling

throughout the country –but focusing on the ZANU-PF

strongholds in Mashonaland– meeting with local officials to

explain his next 100-day plan and field questions. The local

government bureaucrats he had been meeting with consisted of

provincial officials, chiefs, school teachers, and local law

enforcement. Their reaction was overwhelmingly positive to

Tsvangirai’s outreach effort and appeared to indicate that

ZANU-PF’s grip on these regions was weakening. While many in

the audience were ZANU-PF party officials, Moyo said that

they had not benefited from their party ties.

 

——-

COMMENT

——-

 

8. (C) We have little confidence that SADC will have the

appetite to force out Gono and Tomana. SADC has

traditionally chosen the path of least resistance when

dealing with Zimbabwe. While the MDC can make the argument

that their appointments violated the Inter-party Political

Agreement and an MOU between the parties, these are

appointments that Mugabe is constitutionally authorized to

make. While some donors may be able to live with an

emasculated Gono, we stressed that the MDC must represent the

government when proposing uses for donor trust funds to

generate confidence in the international donor community.

END COMMENT.

 

MCGEE

 

(2 VIEWS)

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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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