HomePolitics‘Zanu PF election rant a pipedream’

‘Zanu PF election rant a pipedream’

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe yesterday said elections will be held next March with or without a new constitution.

BY NQABA MATSHAZI

But this immediately drew the ire of his political foes, who accused him of unilateralism.

Addressing hundreds of Zanu PF delegates at the party’s headquarters yesterday, Mugabe reiterated his disdain for the inclusive government, imploring his supporters to vote “properly” so his party can rule unilaterally again.

“We will go for a referendum, but what I can tell you is that we will go for elections in March with or without a new constitution,” he told the wildly cheering supporters.

But Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s spokesman Luke Tamborinyoka dismissed Mugabe’s statements on the election, saying dates were yet to be agreed.

“Zimbabwe will have new elections at a date yet to be agreed on and with a new constitution,” he insisted.Setting the date for an election is process-driven. we first have to have reforms then conduct an election.”

Mugabe has, for the past two years, been itching for an election, but at every turn, he has been thwarted by the two MDC formations and Sadc, who insist on having political reforms before polls ahead.

Tamborinyoka was dismissive of Mugabe’s latest statements, saying for the past three years Mugabe has been speaking about having an election daily, but this had not happened.

He, however, said the inclusive government cannot go beyond the end of next June.

MDC spokesman Nhlanhla Dube was equally dismissive, saying Mugabe was free to express his hopes and wishes, but this did not translate to national policy.

“He (Mugabe) is free to tell us what he wishes, but that does not mean his wishes are superior to anyone’s. Coming up with a date for an election is a collective decision and Mugabe’s views are contrary to that spirit,” he said.

Dube also insisted on having reforms before any elections were held.
Meanwhile, Mugabe, at the launch of a presidential agriculture input scheme, made an impassioned plea to his Zanu PF party members to desist from violence during the election.

“Let us not embarrass ourselves by spoiling our certain victory by engaging in violence,” he said to loud cheers.Let us be clean. We are mature. let us set an example for the whole African continent by being disciplined. No violence please. elections are not a boxing or wrestling match.”

Mugabe has made several such pleas, often falling on deaf ears, with political foes saying such statements could be insincere.

He also took a swipe at Finance minister Tendai Biti whom he accused of failing to fund the agriculture sector.

He said if need be, Biti should borrow money to fund agriculture, the country’s economic backbone, as all countries borrowed money.

Mugabe said the Marange diamonds could not sustain the country, as America had an embargo on Zimbabwe’s diamonds, hence the non-performance of the sector.

Biti has already revised the country’s 2012 Budget downwards, citing lack of revenue from the diamond sector.

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