Mugabe caught offside

HARARE - Yet again, President Robert Mugabe has been caught offside, as his pronunciations two weeks ago that the country will hear a proclamation for poll dates last week have come to nought.

It is indeed high time that Mugabe should walk-the-talk or stop threatening what he can not deliver.

We cannot continue being fed a diet of dubious dates. And this has been happening since 2009.

At 89, and having been in power since 1980, Mugabe of all people should know that he is sharing power in an inclusive government and needs to secure consensus from his partners.

He needs a major paradigm shift and to pursue a united common vision under a stable democratic political dispensation. The long and short of it is that Zimbabwe desperately needs a graduation from the current status.

It is unclear whether this is grandstanding or part of Mugabe’s political skulduggery.

But business is taking a toll from his sabre-rattling on poll dates.

Business is pensive as the political landscape gets murkier and murkier, clouded by uncertainty.

While Mugabe says elections would be held by June 29 after the expiry of the current Parliament, his government partners are reading from an entirely different script.

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and Industry and Commerce minister Welshman Ncube, who are in a wobbly power sharing government with Mugabe, have dismissed a June 29 harmonised election, arguing the earliest that the country could have polls is August.

Such discord affects how people plan. Again we ask, when exactly are the elections, Mr President Sir?
And what about the outstanding issues from an agreement that he inked on September 15, 2008 including the media and security sector reforms?

When are we getting these issues implemented before we start talking of unilaterally declaring poll dates?

As the first citizen, Mugabe should abide by the laws of the land and respect the Global Political Agreement (GPA) which is the basis of the current unity government.

Politicking with important national events such as election dates has no place in a country enjoying relative stability for the first time after a decade of turmoil.

Mugabe’s relentless declarations on the election date risk heightening emotions unnecessarily.

Such rhetoric destabilises this country and we should liquidate our cyclical politics and embark on virtuous politics of inclusivity.

We call upon Mugabe, Tsvangirai and Ncube to agree on a date and make an appropriate announcement.

Zimbabwe is not anyone’s fiefdom. This is a country with important stakeholders and requires to be respected by those entrusted with power. - Staff Writer

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