PM, Ncube deny alleged polls deal

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe’s coalition partners have rejected the Zanu PF leader’s March 2013 poll plan, with Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai remonstrating against reports he has entered into a poll deal with the veteran leader.

Tsvangirai and Welshman Ncube, leader of the smaller MDC party, yesterday said in as much as elections were overdue, Mugabe could not announce poll dates in an affidavit as it is unconstitutional.

Luke Tamborinyoka, Tsvangirai’s spokesperson told the Daily News the next elections’ date is process-driven, and there must be consensus from all parties in the troubled coalition after agreed reforms are implemented.

“Mugabe cannot announce an election date in an affidavit, in as much as he was the respondent to the court case, the date for the next election will be determined after consulting other principals in government,” said Tamborinyoka.

“The people of Zimbabwe cannot be told the date of an election in a court process, this is serious mischief that would have happened.

“As far as the Prime Minister is concerned, President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai will sit down and agree on an election date not this thing being claimed in some media,” added Tamborinyoka.

This week George Charamba, Mugabe’s spokesperson, claimed all principals in the inclusive government had agreed to the March election timetable.

But Tamborinyoka says Charamba was “off mark and lying” when he included his boss in the poll deal.

The state media also claimed the principals have resolved to take over the management of the constitutional-making process, a development which would make the Copac management committee useless.

However, Tamborinyoka claimed his boss will not be part to such an agreement as he believes in “honouring people’s views” and will not participate in a process that seeks to rewrite the Global Political Agreement.

Also joining Tamborinyoka in dismissing Charamba’s claims was Ncube, who said the court order sought by Mugabe was not about the poll date but a day for the proclamation of elections.

“We were not involved on the March dates but we were only consulted when we were asked whether it makes sense to hold by-elections,” said Ncube.

He further said Mugabe’s wish to have elections in March was impossible.

“It is impossible to have elections by March because there is a lot of work that needs to be done.

“All parties must work in good faith to ensure that we come up with an election roadmap and implement it,” said Ncube.

According to Mugabe in his urgent court application filed last week, he said he planned to call for elections in March next year. The court duly granted his wish.

The court application was meant to delay by-elections for three Matabeleland constituencies, but Mugabe said he wanted to have harmonised elections.

His argument was based on claims that government is broke and could not afford to hold elections this year. - Xolisani Ncube

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