Tsvangirai, Mugabe in war of words

HARARE - A war of words between President Robert Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai escalated yesterday, sparking fears of rising tensions as the opposition dusts up poll-rigging and violence allegations against the 50-year-old ruling party.

The main opposition leader reacted angrily to Mugabe’s call on thousands of his Zanu PF supporters to desist from using violence in order to settle political scores.

The veteran Zanu PF leader said his  party’s youths should not attack leaders as happened in the MDC.

Appearing live on State TV at his 90th birthday party in Marondera last Sunday, a vintage Mugabe dismissed prospects of the MDC forming a government, describing his former government allies as “enemies” who are facing extinction.

Tsvangirai yesterday reiterated that Mugabe must stop touting himself as a saint.

This follows the alleged assault on MDC deputy treasurer-general Elton Mangoma recently.

The former prime minister, who shared power with Mugabe for five years until the expiry of a shaky FROM P1

coalition last July, said the 90-year-old has repeatedly stolen elections since 2000.

Tsvangirai is respected internationally for his shepherding of the economy during the GNU era and for stabilising a once chaotic country. Tsvangirai said Mugabe was synonymous with domestic repression.

In Marondera, Mugabe told his supporters that youths should respect their leaders and not copy events in the MDC.

“You have read about violence at the headquarters of (Morgan) Tsvangirai’s party,” Mugabe told thousands of his supporters outside Rudhaka Stadium.

“Mayouths achirova maleaders avo (when youths beat their leaders.)  Fungai, (just think of that). Our youths and their leaders stand in the same analogous manner as children and parents.

“You do not raise your hand to hit your senior. Never, ever. You may quarrel but the best you can do is to go and complain about your senior if your senior is wronging.”

But Tsvangirai, through his press secretary Luke Tamborinyoka, hit back saying Mugabe had installed the architecture of violence in Zimbabwe.

“Mugabe cannot masquerade as a saint. The Zanu PF government killed people during the Gukurahundi era in the 1980s.”

“Gukurahundi” is the Shona name which the Mugabe regime used to describe the massacres in Matabeleland and the Midlands in Zimbabwe between 1982 and 1987.

“It means the early rain which washes away the chaff before the spring rains.

“It describes the onslaught by the 5th Brigade, a North Korean-trained military unit, against a civilian population in which at least 20 000 people lost their lives and thousands more were subjected to unspeakable acts of violence, according to the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) and the Legal Resources Foundation (LRF) in Zimbabwe.

Mugabe, in power since 1980, has never officially apologised for the Gukurahundi atrocities, tepidly describing the atrocities as “a moment of madness”.

“In 2008 Zanu PF killed MDC supporters,” added Tamborinyoka.

“It is unfortunate that he is now trying to use the unfortunate incident that took place at Harvest House to lie to the people.”

Mugabe’s Zanu PF is accused of masterminding some of the 2008 post-election unrest that left at least 200 dead and more than 200 000 homeless, according to rights groups.

Tamborinyoka said Zanu PF should take responsibility for its past actions.

“History is well-known, people in Zanu PF are the worst perpetrators of violence and we are all aware of that,” said Tamborinyoka.

While Tsvangirai insists that his hands are clean, Mugabe seems to believe Mangoma’s account of events, that he was attacked at the instigation of his president.

Recently, Mangoma told the Daily News that he reported the assault to the police after internal processes failed and after Tsvangirai’s spin-doctor Tamborinyoka allegedly distorted the sequence of events.

MDC spokesperson, Douglas Mwonzora, said Mugabe might be surprised by the outcome of the investigations.

“We are surprised when Mugabe, who was leader of Zanu PF during its most murderous moments talks as if his party is clean,” Mwonzora said.

“The MDC has now appointed a committee to fully investigate what happened at Harvest House with a view to establishing the truth. Once this has been established, it will be made public.

“It will be wrong for people to be presumptuous about this matter because the truth may turn out to be truly shocking.”

Comments (41)

its people like mangoma who make mugabe's day when they think they are doing zimbabweans a favour. its a shame. is tsvangirai doing badly, yes but is it time to be so insensitive no. remember ncube has not won anything by doing what he did and will not at all, until he he thinks anew. i did not say that tsvangirai is right, but it is how you deal with him in the face of mugabe who is the real enemy. mangoma although you are so correct, you will gain nothing out of this i bet you.

sammy - 27 February 2014

If Mr Tsvangirai was clean - all he needed to do was report those thugs to the police since he was the first witness. This is not a Party issue. It is a criminal case. Those people should be simply arrested, tried and if guilty locked up for a time which the judge deems appropriate. Mangoma - you were also wrong to wait for the Party to discipline its youth first before reporting! You should have reported immediately. This is a criminal case. Your life and dignity is more important than the Party. We only hear it in Zanu PF that the Party is above the people or government etc. That's wrong! You do not beat, maim or kill in the name of the party or for the party. Only morons in ZANU PF believe in that.

dick mboko - 27 February 2014

Mangoma musiyeyi ndiye akarohwa gadzirisayi imba yenyu imire zvakanaka

Nyamhangambiri - 27 February 2014

i think this mangoma shld siya our tsvangirai alone hapana munhu asina mamistakes ake vanhu vanoda tsvangirai kwete iye hw cld he define democracy for us,kana achiziva mutemo lets wait for congress kwete kuda kumanopulate law to suit his own selfish needs .instead of buliding the party he is killing wat pple died for to hell with mangoma and his groups

twatwa - 27 February 2014

iwe mangoma kana vaguta nezvemdc buda uende usadecide on behalf of the people we know what we want vanhu vachiri kuda tsvangis usade kufadza vanabobo uchivapa nyaya dzekutaura kana vaguta simuka ufambe kana kutanga kapart kako why not for the congress taneta nezvako iwe mangoma kana ngoma yoririsa yoda kubvaruka

djfaso - 27 February 2014

iwe mangoma kana vaguta nezvemdc buda uende usadecide on behalf of the people we know what we want vanhu vachiri kuda tsvangis usade kufadza vanabobo uchivapa nyaya dzekutaura kana vaguta simuka ufambe kana kutanga kapart kako why not wait for the congress taneta nezvako iwe mangoma kana ngoma yoririsa yoda kubvaruka

djfaso - 27 February 2014

The utterances of these MDC-T Tsvangirai supporters is a throwback to the violent days of ZANU PF when Mugabe declared that ZANU PF had degrees in violence. It seems the MDC T have learnt well ZANU PF. The intolerance to opposing views and the defiant defense of the drunken cowardly thugs who assaulted Mangoma is nauseating.

connie - 27 February 2014

Mayouths eMDC akarova mukuru wavo. VaMugabe kwava kuti kwedu vana havarovi vakuru, munhu obva auyisa zvegukurahundi. Zvapinda papi ipapa. Ndiko kurasika kwekupedzisira. Pese Zanu yairova vavengi not kurwisana pachavo. Kana muchirasika zvakadaro mungatonga nyika here. Ungafananidza kurohwa kwemutungamiriri webato nemayouth ebato racho nekurwisa vavengi venyika. Inga Smith akafa achiti vana President vaiva materrorists wani chero vairwisana nemutemo wehudzvanyiriri.

Timothy Thorton - 27 February 2014

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Jonsor - 27 February 2014

Mr Tsvangirai is a victim of nonsense. His mouth is foul. His pen*s was lengthened recently hence his misguided comments against our Leaders. Tsvangison, watch out, we can easily Mangomarise you before Saturday.

Tsvangirai DOFO!! - 27 February 2014

Morgan Tsvangirai/Job Sikhala split Morgan Tsvangirai/Welshman Ncube split Morgan Tsvangirai/Eliot Mudzuri split Morgan Tsvangirai/Roy Bennet split Morgan Tsvangirai/Elton Mangoma split Who is the common denominator in all this? And who really has the problem? Pafungei ipapo..

Pafungei - 27 February 2014

thanks for survey

Chidembo Hardwork - 27 February 2014

Tsvangirai is the most confused person ,he is the major problem in the opposition that resulted in formation of several MDCs.Becoz of his selfish behaviour all these formations including his MDC T they have not won presidential elections,as it is now they will never win in the next elections,Mayi wati beta ayende!

Hapaz Hapanyengwi - 27 February 2014

Haiwawo Mt akaona kuti Mangioma haana kurohwa sala akamusiya tarisayi kuendesa van ku remand just for assault, inga daily kumabhawa vanhu vanongorohwa munhu obhadhara 20 usd oenda kumba i politics chete idzi, Mangoma zvawaida zvaitika wapwanya musangano chienda undopihwa mari yako asi usaite sa Judas iscariot akazozvisungurira.

Maita Manyuka - 27 February 2014

Ndiri kunokumusha kwaRusape. but ndirikuda kumboshare a secrete nemi boys dze MDC. Handisi weparty yenyu. kkkkk. This time Mapindwa mukati menyu vafana maparara. Makapindwa paManegotiations eGNU chaiwo. Manegotiators enyu akakabira propaganda yaanaChinamasa wakanagwara vaiti Hamuna mumwe leader here asiri Morgan? Ivo vakafunga kuti varikupiwa advice nanacde wedu vari experienced nepolitics ndokufunga nezveEgo dzavo neAcademic credentials avo. Ndopavakatanga kuplotter against poor Morgan. Bt ana cde Ptrick naJonso vanoreader politics vaiziva havo pillar yeopposition politics. Ndopavaka zocapitalise on accademic naivity dzaanaMangoma and club. vadaro vakazivakuti vazoigana MDC. vanaziva kuti Tsvangirai ane vanhu kwete zvekutamba ukuvo vanaMangoma vaneElitist and Ego politics, Saka vakavapinda pakati vaiparadza party. Ukuwo machinery yeIntelligence yaiiita overtime kutsvagira poor Morgan tunyaya twekumunyadzisa. aitoteverwa nekunze kwenyika chaiko kkkkk, but boys dzeInteligence dzakaoma dzakagadzirira Morgen size zviripachena. But boys dzeMDC dzacho dzinoti dzakafunda hadzina kumbozviketa dzakafa focus kkkk.. Aaah anaMangoma nevamwe vake kungoziva law yemuexam chete? Svinura vafana, muzive politics dzemuAfrica. Bvunzaiwo vana Bob, Chinamasa, Jonso etc. Mapedzwa vakomana kkkkk

VISION 2020 - 27 February 2014

Mangoma is a ZANU PF agent. Chasara kungomudzinga mumu sangano !!

Changamire Dombo - 27 February 2014

Kuvhunduka chati kwatara hunge une katurikwa. Ko kumhanya kutaura kuti musarove vakuru, asi mavakutya kumukirwa nema youth enyu here nhai vakuru! Everything has its time. I believe its a matter of time before the rented crowds grow impatient and start beating up their so called "Vakuru" / leaders. Infact the "zimbabwean revolution" will begin within ZANU Pf orchestrated by its disgruntled youths.

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Irrrigation Vs Climate change - 27 February 2014

What a stupid peace of reporting, how can you saying open zip is internationally respected, yes of cause for being a puppet and to sustain the white supremacy in Zimbabwe, his so called "international" and yet they are slave masters respect him. Don't report of the GNU as if it happened outside Zimbabwe, we were here and the idiot never did anything except to sleep around with a lot of women. That is why the electorate kicked him out. As for the gukurahundi, if those terrorist come back again we will hit the even harder.

reason - 27 February 2014

Mnagoma is mentally cripled he is being misled by the media Daily News included and he thinks he is indispensable but politics is not that simple.

Aluta continua - 27 February 2014

I dont see the difference between MDC and Zanu. Mugabe has actually schooled Tsangirayi on violence. These two must go!

fatso - 27 February 2014

Iwe Timothy Thorton unoti Zanu yairova vavengi, kwete kurwisana pachavo, are you saying Ndebeles who were killed during Gukurahundi were enemies? Uzvibate.

Professor - 27 February 2014

Why blame Mangoma? He was beaten by thugs and he reported to the police. Let the investigations be completed and the thugs brought to book! No credible leader should shield thugs, please!

Methodologyies - 27 February 2014

iwe reason are yu really sua of wat u are saying, do u mean kut MT contributed nothing during his tym in the GNU?, pafunge mushe ipapo

mzukuru wako - 27 February 2014

As an individual who was actively involved in the grassroots formation of MDC from Trade Union collaborations with Student Unions early in the days I would like to express some thoughts around the current situation and how it makes me feel. Violence should be deplored in all its forms whether by ruling parties, opposition or whether it was committed in the past. MDC as an opposition party in its infancy had direction, political ethics built on a strong academically acquired political values as well as experience of different political eras under Zanu Pf as well as the then Rhodesians. That sense of direction is what led to the massive shift of power and what appealed to the young democratically thirsty Zimbabwean electorate who have been yearning to see something better than what Ndonga, Dongo , Tekere and Muzorewa had been offering for two decades. The political ethos that we then believed in were the ones that led to the victory in the referendum and a closely fought elections that was robbed by Zanu Pf 2000. However having said that there were weaknesses that were implanted in the original DNA of MDC, I remember sitting with Tendai Biti in his house one day preparing to go to a Rally in Mbare , Biti mentioned in passing that 'we need to desist from making this a one person party'. A strong statement that stuck to my mind and I knew exactly what he meant. This was a few months after we had turned from a trade unions and Student Unions coalition to a political party. That statement and that conversation sticks to my mind and reminds me what Tendai was worried about then.

Grassroots - 27 February 2014

MDC has unintentionally walked straight in the slip streams of the same party that it loathed. As a matter of analysis, in principle, theory, and philosophy and in practice it has become very difficult to distinguish between MDC and Zanu Pf. Refute it we might try, however as a bona-fide MDC Cadre and I say MDC without a T and without a Welshman or a Wiwa (Sikhala) I relive the dreams that I then had of MDC and those dreams are since gone and all I can see is a country with two sets of identical political parties run by self centred, power hungry egocentric who have no interest in serving the citizens of Zimbabwe other than lining their own pockets. There is a same set of politicians in Zimbabwe who will purport to have the mandate of people when in actual fact what they have is deplorable coercive and bullying tactics that they use to brainwash people into submission. Any political party followers are allowed to hold their leaders high and to be proud of them; however care, checks and balances have to be agreed and set from the onset. The moment we started to over eulogize these so called leaders, they forget who they are, they lose their values and what they stand for. Its not them having a say they are just the representative of the mass followers to make it possible for our political views to be heard as we cannot all sit in parliament. There is nothing wrong with Zimbabweans trusting their leaders, the fault is with these leaders themselves thinking that they are mightier than God. If in 1999 in Rufaro Stadium we talked about Mugabe being in power for too long and delivering nothing, what can we say about Tsvangirai now? If we talked about Zanu Pf using thuggish non democratic political and electoral tactics what can we say about MDC when in the first place we had a fight about Primary elections. No sitting MP should be challenged etc, where is the D' in democracy, is that not dictatorship.

Grassroots - 27 February 2014

Lets look at people changing political leadership, whether we can say Tsvangirai has been robbed victory for the past number of elections or not the question is; is that post that he has an absolute right?. Who gives them the right to say (whether its him or Mugabe) that people cannot ask questions about their leadership? If you cannot be questioned you are a dictator then , and what is Mugabe? Whether he sanctioned the beatings of Mangoma or not the point remains, its not going to go away all of you bona- fide MDC supporters the question of leadership needs to be asked and democratic answers are needed not sanctioning violence. There is a high risk of MDC just being “another party” just a another thorn in Zanu Pf 's backside offering nothing in return to people of Zimbabwe. Zanu Pf are better at what they do, they beat us to submission and take all the power, and what do we do we beat each other and just split and ad an additional prefix to the MDC from A-Z very soon it will be numbers MDC 1 to a millions while Zanu Pf share the wealth of the country and continue to suppress our people. Forget about this MDC-T MDC – W MDC Sikhala business get back to your thinking pads and think about what made us form this party. Private companies football teams and corporate change leadership to bring new blood new ideas and approach not just keeping the same CEO just because he was there at the beginning. Look at Microsoft, BMW Toyota the evidence is there, But what do we do, we thrive on dividing ourselves using MDC T, W etc. Any political party that idolise a certain individual to the extent they will attack to protect the reign of that person is not different to Zanu Pf and it is a shame and a disappointment that this is what Biti was afraid of them a few months after we formed the party. He saw into the future and here we are now.

Grassroots - 27 February 2014

I know some of you will not be happy with my utterances here however I will remind you that we have followed the same shadows of Zanu Pf and doing worse than them at least they are in power! Lets focus, lets change our approach and our philosophy, get the dictionary and look again at the whole meaning of democratic party, take the nonsensical act of putting people's personal names on Pary names and start working on progressive political strategies that are based on true democratic political values and ethos that aim to bring equality , openness and preserve the liberties and freedoms that people of Zimbabwe died for. Im a shamed a regret the time I wasted pursuing the formation of the party, I could have earned a First degree instead of going to night rallies and creating another Zanu Pf and another Mugabe only different names!

Grassroots - 27 February 2014

Mugabe ngatibvira apa, vanhu vangani vakafa pa Gukurahundi ko 2008? mhondi dziri mu zanu pf nxa

baba Va Chatunga - 27 February 2014

tsavangirai ari nani anorova kuratidza kuti watadza...manje mugabe anokusekerera,,asi uchibva ipapo wairasa. dai zvaibvira taibvunza 3/4 yakavigwa pa heroes acre kuti chii chakaitika kwavari.

idi amin - 28 February 2014

Pa door pe Harvest House pane mufananidzo wembama. That should have warned Mangoma kuti achakwaturwa nemambama. Zviri pachena. Ini handichapfuuri nepo.

machakachaka - 28 February 2014

In politics, you fight to get up there and its all bloodshed because along the way up munema sellouts nema informas who compromise maobjectives. Now whichever part the world over must put up with that. Kana wabudirira then you revert back rationality ndiyo reality. Tsvangirwa has to exterminate his own and others to get there so at the end of the day politics gets dirt as a game. Dont remind us about the past, tell us about today ndipo panenyaya. Isu we choose our future. Rigging or not, choice suffices. Tsvangirai, wake up to reality. Kana wakundikana hang up your gloves, jaba jaba and gibberish doesn't carry your day.

Patriot - 28 February 2014

WHO ON SEVERAL OCCASIONS BOASTED ABOUT NUMEROUS DEGREES IN VIOLENCE?

mqhafi - 28 February 2014

TWO WRONGS DO NOT MAKE A RIGHT. MDC MUST REMAIN CLEAN AT ALL COST AND NEVER TO REFER TO GUKURAHUNDI PLEASE OUR LEADERS BE SERIOUS WITH THIS NATION

Furatidzai Chisingaitwi Bhobho Mtisi - 28 February 2014

Huhuhuhu musatinyangdza MaZanu inga ivo vaMugabe vakaDashurwa namunangagwa wani Ngwena vakazopiswa havo nemaCIO. zvirinani ndezvipi apa, Mangoma dai akatoutraiwa haidi kutongwa nemapurisa iyi . Tsangison by ginde

Chipoko - 28 February 2014

people should live in peace,whoever wants a higher position in any organisation must form their own

e emupfeka - 28 February 2014

Mangoma, Zimbabweans might want to also know how you got into the MDC Standing Committee (SC) since the party's constitution did not have a post of the Deputy Treasurer. Roy Bennett and Tendai Mbiti/Biti rigged your entry into the SC. We know you are not yourself and we know whose interests you are serving. My advice to you is the MDC congress constitutionally comes after 5 years, that is in 2016. Why do you want to rush to a congress. You and Mbiti masquarading as our negotiators in the GNU rushed us to an election which the victory you surrendered to Zanu PF for a few pieces of silver. What happens after, you blame President MT for that. Who do you think you are fooling? My advice to u is Elton, Morgan ane vanhu muMDC and outside saka siyai nehudofo hwake atitonge isu mamwe madofo. Go back to your own party and business. Mbiti is good as a lawyer not a politician. He failed Zimbabweans as a Finance Minister and even corruptly got/stole money from NSSA through his friend (Patterson Timba)'s Rennaisance bank. You even failed to pay MPs there salaries, even if your party enjoyed a majority in parliament then. As for that self-exiled politrickician Roy Bennett, the man in terms of Zim politics is finished except for a lot of money that he steals from donations to the MDC. He has more white friends abroad than supporters in the MDC/Zim. Its unfortunate i had to raise these points through a public platform since you enjoy publicity yourself. I called you long back and gave you free advice which you did not consider. Anyway, good luck to you guys ve Team Renewal at the 2016 MDC People's Congress. MMSK

Zvakanaka Hove - 1 March 2014

Bennett you better join the Democratic Alliance (DA) ikoko kuSouth Africa since you stay there, work with other whites there and stop fooling us Zimbabweans.

Zvakanaka Hove - 1 March 2014

I do not see MT losing at the next congress in the near future, even if held tomorrow unless there is a very drastic change in the state of events. I don't see a strong need for him to go around canvassing for support either. He appears to be the only better choice, where there is an acute shortage of real options. I also do not foresee any of these other guys getting enough support to un sit him at least for now. They do not seem to make the grade required to prosecute this struggle. Most of the other guys appear more like revised editions of Zanu. MT to me is one of few who genuinely are into it not for selfish reasons. He may not be the ideal person, but he is the better option. These learned guys are clueless in basic politics and whenever there is a challenging situation, their reactions show them as very immature, shallow and suspicious.They depict the same mentality of student activists of the mid 90s. I wish they had gone through life's hardships, joblesness, hunger etc like most of us did,before going into politics. Unfortunately most of them just went from college to politics and then to being ministers. Its like a Grade 4 pupil going straight to Form 3. The real thorn in Zanu's backside is not the MDC. There are many MDCs now but why is Mr Mugabe not attacking them as he does MT. They say they defeated him and his party but why keep attacking him. He is giving them sleepless nights. Remove MT and MDC T is finished. While there is a need for leadership change which definitely is democracy, it is not the right time. Politics sometimes includes breaking the law, the constitutions of both party and country and the accepted norms. Mugabe and Nkomo had to break the law severally by waging the war, bombing national installations etc. Insistence on playing by the book is folly . No one listens when you speak softly but if you shout even those who do not want to listen will hear .

mosquito - 2 March 2014

You have to break the rules and norms in order to achieve the goals of a revolution. In any case all revolutions begin as unlawful acts. Libyan revolution, Our own war of independence, South African struggle, USA , Egypt etc. If these people had stuck by the book De Klerk would have ruled South Africa for life. Gaddafi would still be alive and ruling Libya. Indeed we should desist from creating another Mugabe in Tsvangirai, but we have to get into real politics. Tsvangirai as such should lead the struggle until its fulfilment and then hand over to the next man. That is a meaningful approach. Political decisions are like a chess game. You don't move your pieces willy nilly, but each move is a calculated well thought of action. Most times your move is determined by your opponent's last move. A haphazard approach is a sure way to failure. And failure in this case is another day, month, year and decade for Mr Mugabe.

mosquito - 2 March 2014

Aka kamhetamakumbo kakaremara zvese nepfungwa. Donate him to Zanu PF.

Kachembere kekwaChivi - 4 March 2014

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