Mugabe blasts Biti

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe yesterday reiterated that the country will go for elections in March next year with or without a new constitution and also took a swipe at Finance minister Tendai Biti who he accused of not financing agriculture.

Speaking at the launch of the Presidential Well-Wishers Special Agricultural Inputs Scheme at Zanu PF headquarters, Mugabe told scores of his party supporters that the country will go for a watershed election next year even if a new constitution is not adopted as envisaged by Sadc and his political partners in the tenuous unity government.

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai who shares power with Mugabe in a Sadc-brokered coalition has insisted the country will only go for elections after the adoption of a new charter as well as the implementation of a new set of electoral reforms that would ensure a free and fair poll.

“We will have elections in March with or without a new constitution — start preparing,” Mugabe told his supporters.

 “Zanu PF will have primaries, there will be no imposition of candidates, no one should come and say the president installed him as a candidate. No the president wants what the people want.”
 
Although the state media claims that last year Mugabe sourced $27 million under the presidential scheme which went on to benefit 712 400 households countrywide, the country is yet to feel the positive impact of Mugabe’s donations.

Turning to Biti whom Zanu PF accuses of sabotaging the government work plan by failing to adequately finance vital sectors such as agriculture, Mugabe wished Zanu PF was alone in government.

“If only it was Zanu PF alone in power, how can you say the government has no money, where is it? How dare you say you have no money to buy inputs?

“The government should have the capacity to borrow. Even America when they had no money they borrowed, they went to International Monetary Fund (IMF) and asked for money.”  

Mugabe whose Zanu PF wing of the coalition government is accused of secretly stashing money accrued from diamond mining said the rare gems alone cannot sustain the country’s needs.
 
“Chiadzwa does not have the capacity to sustain the whole country. When we auction our diamonds, America goes behind our backs and tells buyers not to buy,” said Mugabe.

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