The national political parties’ dialogue which currently involves 17 political parties that participated in last year’s presidential elections is to be officially launched on Friday next week.
Twenty-three parties fielded presidential candidates but the Movement for Democratic Change led by Nelson Chamisa had refused to join the dialogue which was initially organised by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The dialogue is now being jointly convened by the chair of the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission Selo Nare and the chair of the Zimbabwe Gender Commission Margaret Mukahanana-Sangarwe.
Some of the parties that have pulled out of the dialogue are the United Democratic Alliance, the Build Zimbabwe Alliance and the People’s Progressive Party.
The MDC argues that any dialogue without it is futile and also says the dialogue must be convened by someone from outside Zimbabwe.
Party leader, Chamisa, seems to be flip-flopping, however, at one time saying he is ready to talk with Mnangagwa to spare Zimbabweans from the hardships that they are facing and then setting pre-conditions for dialogue to take place.
He has also complained that he has made several attempts to arrange a meeting with Mnangagwa but this has all been in vain.
The Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front insists that Mnangagwa can only meet Chamisa if he first recognises him as the country’s legitimate President.
Chamisa insists that he won last year’s elections but was robbed by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission.
He maintains that position despite losing the case at the Constitutional Court, the country’s highest court.
According to the Ministry of Information, the parties to the national dialogue today met and agreed on a code of conduct that will promote conditions conducive for dialogue.
These include political tolerance, mutual respect, consensus, information dissemination and commitment to dialogue.
The launch is on 17 May.