I won't work with Mugabe: Tsvangirai

HARARE - Amid ongoing talk about the need for another interim governing structure to stem Zimbabwe’s deepening political and economic crises — in the mould of the 2009 to 2013 unity government which brought relative stability to the country — opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai says he has no intentions of ever working with President Robert Mugabe again.

At the same time, the former prime minister in that inclusive government also told the Daily News in an exclusive interview yesterday that the country’s meddlesome security sector was likely to have a major say in who would succeed Mugabe within the nonagenarian’s warring Zanu PF.

“I currently have no real relationship with Mugabe. In fact, I last saw him on the eve of the last elections in 2013. I made a number of attempts to see him but was told that first I had to recognise him as the winner of that sham election. So, I have not met him and he has kept his distance, just as I have kept mine.

“If there are people who are talking about another GNU (government of national unity) of sorts I am not aware of that and given the bad experiences we had in the GNU it will honestly be a hard-sell,” he said.

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Tsvangirai, who appears to be on the road to full recovery after falling ill earlier this year and undergoing chemotherapy treatment in South Africa, said he had little doubt that the country’s military chiefs — who Zanu PF insiders say are supporting Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa in the ruling party’s brutal factional and succession wars — would have a major say on who succeeds Mugabe.

And as the country hurtles towards the crunch 2018 elections, the indefatigable former trade union leader also called upon Zimbabweans to not just brace up for even tougher times ahead, but also actively participate in demanding much-needed electoral reforms in the country if their lot was to improve.

“History has taught us that Zanu PF will not move unless it is cornered. While they did that with the Constitution, we now have a new Constitution. And they didn’t like a GNU but were also forced into it through pressure.

“So, we are saying Nera (the National Electoral Reform Agenda) is a good platform to put pressure on Mugabe to change. If we don’t do this, holding any election with a semblance of credibility is going to be impossible,” Tsvangirai said.

It was in this light that he felt that the role of the military would continue to be important going into the future.

“The military issue is still an important factor as the security establishment is part of the ruling elite. So, they should be made to understand that they are part of the solution and not the problem.

“When you hear them (military) talking about corruption, you will know that indirectly the military will have a say in Zanu PF’s succession wars. It is a fair assessment to say very little takes place in Zanu PF without their involvement,” he said.

On Mnangagwa, Tsvangirai said the Midlands godfather and Mugabe were “birds of the same feather” — adding that even though he appeared to have the support of the military, the odds were against him with regards to succeeding the nonagenarian.

“It is an almost impossible task for Mnangagwa to take over. Even if he did, we would still have more of the same problems, unless if the system is changed fundamentally.

“At the moment, any change would simply be just replacing one individual with another, with the same problems and system characteristics in place. In that sense, it would be foolhardy to think that replacing Mugabe with Emmerson, without fundamental reforms that are needed to transform government, would help anyone.

“In fact, it would be a waste of time because it would be a perpetuation of the same character and evil system,” Tsvangirai said.

“There is an urgent need to change the system and it can be done . . . as was done during the GNU. People are suffering. People are living in dire straits and like they say, when elephants fight it is the grass that suffers. We need to end the current madness.

“As the MDC, we are committed to playing our part in solving the problems, but we are not government. Zanu PF should give in now and pave the way for a proper election to finally take place in the interest of the country,” he added.

Comments (23)

obvious we don't need to work with Mugabe, mujur, mbiti, welshboy, dumiso, simba and or mangoma. this time we are on our own going into 2018. all those above named are traitors who have either delayed the revolution or frustrated it.

josphat mugadzaweta - 16 November 2016

@Josphat, i think you are somehow day dreaming if not from Engutsheni , how can you just reject such a coalition , your rejection will definitely splits the votes something which once affected MDC T . Mliswa won recently just because he was working and being supported by opposition parties , didn't you learn something from that? Why can't you just shutup ?

MehlokaMthwakazi - 16 November 2016

True no need to work with any one, Working with the masses who are suffering is the only clever way . It is dangerous to work with former zanu and sellouts like Biti and Nube . As for Munangagwa yes he will take over zanu leadership and it will end there . We the majority will never allow a murderer to win elections never ever that will not happen . Bcoz we cannot allow a stupid to lead this country after another fool destroyed our economy to beyond repair . We want Morgan to lead us finish and klaa he is the only guy who has stood with us through thick and thin the rest rubbish kuphela just gold diggers and wanting to take over power to safe guard their ill gotten riches .VIVA Morgan sisonke uyinknzi wena

Diibulaanyika - 16 November 2016

Cheap politicking and cheap mind games wont solve our economic problems.For some of us its important ,very important to remain focused on the economic solutions.Elections arent the solution for economic revival mr prime minister.Infact elections will kill the economy much further,it is dead yes bt inroads have been established to resuscitate it.Mr pm yu have been sleepingon the wheel,maybe bcoz of the illness.Its way too late now to make any changes for elections.Yu are going to be trounced,fairly or unfairly ,then yu want sunctions back ,even worse.Pple will be traumatised ,brutalized ,maimed ,nust for yu to loose an election.?Skip this one 2018. Get more organised for 2023.It is us pple s desires that yu must respect ,not you politicians love for action.Yo relationship wth pres mugabe is not the reason pple shuld suffer .Besides he is now too old for relavence,its yu mr pm who loves to drag him back in.Yu prefer working wth him or loosing to him.We want our economy back.Tell us anyway how yu are going to revive the economy if yu loose 2018 ? Nothing.And if yu win, what is the economic plan? Nothing.

viola gwena - 17 November 2016

The only contribution yu made to this country was thru GNU,nothing else.So why shuld we not expect yu to work on that again.Thats where yo strength is.Becoming president seems to be a pipe dream yu love to entertain yoself ,but I know for sure it may never hapen, in yo life time.Too many odds against yu.And I know yo close comrades know this very well.They wuld prefer another dance wth GNU.Lastly im happy yu are on the mend healthwise.Take yo time .Dont rush these elections.A good example of a good plan on roadpath to winning an election was done by yo counterpart, Robert Mugabe .In 1975 he was given the mandate to lead the struggle to independence.Targeted date of achieving this was put at 1990. But Robert Mugabe lead by changing struttegies of the revolution,adding more power an pressure on RF and by 1980 ,10 yrs earlier than the targeted date ,he delivered independence.It was not a forever struggle.Yu sir need checkmating.

viola gwena - 17 November 2016

@mehlo I believe you are writing from ingutsheni yourself. winning elections is about numbers and all those knaves expect morgan have the numbers thus they will no add any value to the coalitions. its about adding value baba and not just claiming to be supported when you are not. if they think they have the numbers, let them go it alone.

mugadzaweta josphat - 17 November 2016

As part of our strategy to rid this country of this monster it definitely does make sense for all the opposition groups to unite in order to form a formidable opposition group capable of challenging the existing corrupt mob in power. Problem is I just do not have even a tiny fraction of confidence in any of them to lead this country and establish a cohesive functional Government. Imagine the in fighting that would go on - so how can it possibly work? This country is in desperate need of someone different - a leader the caliber of the Tanzanian or Namibian President - someone who doesn't continuously break his/her promises, a responsible intelligent leader endowed with courage to make the changes needed to put this country and the economy back on the right track again? Right now I do not see anyone on the horizon.

Mbewa - 17 November 2016

@viola gwena - it's sad, very sad that there are still people who still believe anything positive can come out of Zanu PF, worse still to continue blaming Mr. Tsvangirai for your failures. On winning elections or more correctly rigging elections like Zanu PF has been doing for some time now, if you legitimately won and are fully capable of serving the public, why do you expect Mr. Tsvangirai to work with Mr. Mugabe? After winning the 2008 election which took almost 6 weeks of counting/doctoring/editing/correcting, your Zanu PF went on a limp/arm/hand/palm cutting (which your youths and war vets affectionately named short sleeve, long sleeve or sleeveless depending on the cutting position) and killing spree which resulted in Mr. Tsvangirai withdrawing from the so-called re-run and later joining the GNU to save people from death and suffering. The worst part is your Zanu PF @viola, sees no wrong doing in all this. On the economy, don't ask questions you already know answers to. We are where we are not just because Zanu PF is corrupt but also grossly incompetent. If Mr. Tsvangirai has no plan to revive the economy and offers "nothing" like you say @viola, why the hell would you need or "expect" such a person to work with your Mr. Mugabe again? Anyway, we have got proof that Mr. Tsvangirai and team are the real deal, things became much better when they were involved in the GNU despite Zanu PF efforts to undermine them. Guess what, it took your Zanu PF very little time to destroy their efforts after you stole the 2013 election. Shame indeed!

Diego - 17 November 2016

@viola gwena - on the issue of your continuous pushing for Mr. Mnangagwa to take over from Mr. Mugabe, right now i don't think anything Zanu PF, whether G40 or Lacoste will appeal to me after all the damage and suffering you have caused. Also on war veterans/heroes, from my understanding, a hero/heroin is a person who is admired for their courage, outstanding achievements or noble qualities , in your case the selfless act of delivering freedom to the masses. But i think you turned into Pirates a long time ago, your selfishness and greed took over, personally i have lost all respect for you (sadly there are some noble war vets who have to endure the status the title carries being dragged in the mud). You are now proud owners of multiple farms which were once productive and employed a lot of workers. Your members won't pave way for fresh ideas from the next generation. Imagine a house where it's taboo for a child to dream, what some role models you are!

Diego - 17 November 2016

Tsvangirai is the only leader that the people of Zimbabwe need most,you might have different perceptions or arguments but thats how it is.They might rig the elections by using the gerentocracy tactics,but without MDC in power the economy will stand still

shutto - 17 November 2016

Diego you said it. Mr Tsvangirai did work with Mugabe and things got better. But Zanu pf sabotaged that potential relationship in 2013.

Young Zimbo - 17 November 2016

@ Viola ukhuluma umdidi shame. You are blinded by your desire for Gugurahundi Mnangagwa to rule. What will he do when he was part of umdidi for the past 36 years. Fuseki wena stere sakho shame

#Viola and ZANU pf must fall - 17 November 2016

Diego ,much as I wuld love to respond to yo input ,I find it pointless to do that becoz yu are way off topic.I like to be focused on the topic of coversation .In any case im not advocating only zanupf to be in GNU but MDC too.How Tsvangirai has won elections but still not president is a new topic yu may want this platform to explore seperately, maybe.But at least yu agree wth me what these elections have produced ,murder and chaos as yu say.So what if anything are yu disagreeing wth me?

viola gwena - 17 November 2016

Diego. And by the way insults will never potray yo points any way better than being human.Insults take away the beauty in yo input making yu an undesirable character like one skunk I know.Potay yo thoughts wth good language.That way yu will be understood more.chao.

viola gwena - 17 November 2016

Fellow platformists. ,why is it that contributors of Ndebele names are so vulgar? They dont show any clever input besides insults.I also know of one minister from the region .The a man is full of mouth,wicked mouth,stink .He had to be removed from info ministry bcoz of bad mouth.Everytime he spoke publickly there wuld be a warning to under 18s for fowl language.Only from these my ndebele uncles.Is that the best that can come out of the region?Insults.mdidi,msunu whatever.Umdhala was never this low.Skunks have taken over matebs I think.

viola gwena - 17 November 2016

@viola gwena - i'm truly sorry if you felt insulted but can you be kind enough to point to me exactly where you felt insulted so that i won't make the same mistake in the future. Everything i said was meant to some up my point, hence all of it is relevant in my view. I believe we can't focus on the present and future without referring to the past. That's why during job interviews applicants bring resumes detailing their past so that employees can make wise decisions. I understand why you don't want Zanu PFs resume to be referred to every now and then, because you know it stinks through and through. Anyway, i don't understand which part of my argument you are failing to understand! Yes, we do agree Zanu PF has a record of chaos and murder like you said. I'm not sure though, where exactly i implied Zanu PF to want to be in a GNU "alone", is that even possible? What i am supporting is the refusal by Mr. Tsvangirai to enter such an arrangement again of working with Mr. Mugabe, which is the exact opposite of what you are "advocating" for. And your idea @viola, of not wanting elections despite the horrible things Zanu PF does, its only fair that people be granted their constitutional right to either retain or in my opinion remove the monster that has devoured our once beautiful country.

Diego - 17 November 2016

Yes Diego.we may pick on a variety of clumsy issues to support inputs bt at the end of the day ,we need the economy to move forward.I dont see us Zimbos ,in our current state ,holding free ,fare,peacefull and decent elections in a year.It will be very corrupted and wont represent pples choices.It will be costly for nothing but deaths of innocent lives.After that punitive sanctions.Is that something I must look up to?No.Yu have yo disappointments wth zanu,fine ,but history is never made thru a straight line.There is bending and mending along the way to history.Zanu is changing,for the better.I have that confidence.The struggle now is for us to show the good character in us,the good fight for a better Zim.And I hope yo party is doing the same,coming up wth good ideas to turn this economy around,not always fight n critics.No party is run to suit critics bt card carrying members and the populace.On insults my apologies to yu.its the other fellow ,the msunu thing .Anyway be blessed on yo party endeavours

viola gwena - 17 November 2016

@viola gwena - from your admission things are pretty bad and the cause of the above problems is quite obvious. If i didn't know any better, i would say you truly want Zimbabwe to be better and don't agree with the bad governance by Zanu PF but somehow you stay put in such a party which represents everything anti-human. Why the blind loyalty @viola when there is no light at the end of the Zanu PF tunnel? Given we have heard the same story a million times and no "change" has happened to or within Zanu PF. On what basis do you suggest i put my confidence and trust in such a system, your words or the words of your leaders? I believe a better Zimbabwe lies elsewhere not within the same architects of its demise. Kudya uroyi nekunyara (or kutya) ndaramba.

Diego - 18 November 2016

@viola gwena - by the way, are you calling the death of people clumsy issues? Some people now have to be fed like babies for the rest of their lives because they no longer have arms they were born with to feed, bath or work for themselves. Can you seriously call that clumsy issues? I thought you were decent and human enough to have heart.

Diego - 18 November 2016

@Diego u nailed it in the head, this Viola thing still sees no evil in ZANU and still thinks there are good people in the form of Mnangagwa . That's why l refer to her as Mdidi because that's what she is. We have suffered enough wena Viola ZANU pf Gugurahundi idiot . As long as u still vouch for murderers to me ungumdidi into yokubhotsha. Don't try to comourflage your hatred for Ndebeles l know u do and l hate gugurahundists and u Viola lomdidi ongumnangagwa.

#anti Viola and Zanumustfall - 18 November 2016

i will expect a lot of backlash but this guy once said that but he shocked everyone and did a GNU. i personally think he has lost his relevance in this struggle , its my opinion

ricardo - 18 November 2016

Thank yu Diego.Well,well,well ,im not the one who is sayi g those words,its yu.Check on my input,there is nothing of that story " dead pple being clumzy". When yu check and do not see where I said so ,then its yu my dear.I dnt need to know why yu believe in that.Any shallow politicking aside, yu ask me one pertinent question,why im still in Zanu.Its called hope ,faith all moulded together.Like christians hope n faith, its kind of similar.My party will change leadership for the 1st time since 1974 ,that gives me hope.This hope is better hope than elsewhr for me.I love Bhuti Tsvangi bt I dont have hope in him anymore.Pres Mugabe n Pm Tsvangi dont offer me nor my grandchildren any hope bt dreams,unattainable dreams ofcourse.Thats why Khaba ,and its choices yu know,the right to a choice.

viola gwena - 18 November 2016

My appologies its Diego ,by the way.We have diferent views ,I respect yu for that.And I will respect yo choice if yu may kindly expose yo reasns,maybe I culd move over bt not based on blind promises and secret economic blue prints.I differ a lot wth my other brother Truth,but I respect his choices.And I like the yungmans style.He is educated, talks sence ,a child of revolutionaries, what a kid.But he knows im his Tete.When g40 looked like they were crushing us ,I asked this yungman to protect me from his friends.He did.Bt we differ on politics.Thats mature politics that can take yu somewhr ,not profenity.Yu want to represent my uncles who are Ndebeles ,using fowl language,profenity the devils language,No.

viola gwena - 18 November 2016

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