064_Global12_InFocus_Zimbabwe

Global 13

In FocusZimbabwe “We are pleased that we managed to achieve economic stability and that life for the ordinary Zimbabwean is appreciably better now than it was before the inclusive government” InTervIew Morgan Tsvangirai, Prime Minister and leader of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC making process in terms of the Global Po- What are some of the pluses and minuses party took power as part of a coalition with litical Agreement (GPA). of the inclusive government? Zanu PF – President Robert Mugabe’s SADC Southern African Development When we went into the inclusive govern- party – following disputed elections in Community has recently restated at the ment (IG), we were responding to a politi- 2008. With elections looming once again in Dar-es-Salaam Summit that the road map cal and economic crisis that had engulfed Zimbabwe, Tsvangirai opens up toGlobal towards elections includes the completion the nation, against the background of a about his party’s struggles with Zanu PF of the constitution-making process, which disputed election – the first round of which within the inclusive government (IG), and includes the holding of a referendum. we had won. Ordinary people were going his determination to ensure that the upcom- The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission through a torrid time, courtesy of a severe ing elections are free and fair. He believes (ZEC) – the constitutional body that con- economic environment arising principally that the past four years have brought im- ducts and supervises elections – has ad- from mismanagement by the government. provements and that it is time for the world vised government that it needs at least ten We were driven by the need to restore po- to see that the country’s political and eco- weeks to prepare for the referendum and 90 litical stability, as a precursor to economic nomic reforms are taking shape. Life has days for the elections. There will also be an stabilisation, which we have achieved in improved for Zimbabweans, he insists, but intensive voter registration exercise begin- the IG. If one makes a comparison between with more help from the global community, ning 3 January 2013 for up to three months. the period immediately preceding the IG, and with the lifting of sanctions, it could Given that we are already into the new year, when circumstances were dire, and the pe- be even better. He is optimistic that there this essentially means, if one is optimistic, riod during the IG, the difference is plain. is a brighter future for Zimbabwe, particu- that the referendum would be at the end of Another factor that drove us into the IG larly if an end is brought to the international February or early March and elections will was that we needed to occupy space within isolation it has endured under the reign of be much further away than that. the state and use that space to influence Mugabe. If adopted, the new constitution will need reform from inside. We had spent all the to be implemented – particularly the provi- previous years of the democratic struggle Global: There has been considerable confu- sions that are likely to impact the elections. outside the state structures and we were sion about the timing of the 2013 elections The implementation programme will also aware that our rivals had the advantage of – Zanu PF seems to want an early elec- require time and resources and this cannot incumbency. tion while you prefer a later date. Can you practically be achieved before March. We had a situation where the state was clarify? As prime minister, I have engaged ZEC synonymous with ZANU PF, that is, where Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai: It is on behalf of government to determine their the state was ZANU PF and ZANU PF was practically impossible to hold elections in needs and expectations and to ensure that the state. That situation was untenable and March. Elections are most likely going to the preparations for elections are adequate a serious threat to the achievement of our be held in 2013, but no date has been de- for the purpose of facilitating a free and fair democratic struggle. Our task was to oc- cided yet. Much depends on the pace of the elections that is credible and legitimate. cupy key spaces within the state and break preparatory work at hand. This is because a The timelines that we have from ZEC are ZANU PF’s monopoly and hold on the state number of processes have to be completed understood by all the parties concerned, structures. We have managed to do that to a before elections are held. These processes and it is clear that elections will be further considerable degree. include the conclusion of the constitution- than March. We also had the challenge of breaking 64 lwww.global-briefing.org first quarter 2013global


Global 13
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