The MDC applauds today’s statement by the SADC chairman and South African President Jacob Zuma which made it clear that all parties forming the inclusive government should be committed to fulfilling the letter and spirit of the Global Political Agreement.
The statement by the SADC chairman is refreshing. President Zuma has made an unequivocal statement that African nations should commit themselves to human rights, good governance and democracy if our continent is to extricate itself from the bad-boy image.
We in the MDC have always been consistent in our commitment to fulfilling the GPA, to which we all appended our signatures. Our commitment as a tripartite government to what we have agreed between ourselves will have a domino effect that will unlock the much needed foreign aid and investment that are necessary to kick-start our economy. This is what all progressive forces have been saying; that we must not renege on agreed positions and that we should abide by the dictates and the full meaning of our signature on the GPA. We must urgently resolve the outstanding issues such as the issue of provincial governors, permanent secretaries, ambassadors, the issue of Attorney General Johannes Tomana, central bank governor Gideon Gono and the swearing in of deputy minister designate, Hon Roy Bennett.
We in the MDC agree with President Zuma that our unbridled commitment to good governance and democratic reforms will show the world that we are ready to move forward and that implementation of the GPA is not a mirage but a political reality that will give our nation a chance to start afresh so that we give hope and confidence to our people, to Africa and the broader international community. We agree with President Zuma that implementing the GPA is the panacea to the rest of the attendant problems dogging the inclusive government
The MDC is a party of excellence. We believe in the truth; in forthright statements that make it imperative for our country to begin anew; to chart a new way driven by basic democratic tenets of respect for human rights, good governance and simply abiding by the dictates of documents and agreements we have signed with neither pressure nor coercion. We must all simply abide by the GPA and agree to resolve the outstanding issues so that the inclusive government can begin to bring full confidence, hope and prosperity to the people of Zimbabwe.
We hope that SADC and the AU will take it upon themselves to make sure that all the parties fully implement the GPA so that “African solutions to African problems” is not simply a slogan, but a value that we all hold and cherish. We also hope that the SADC review of the GPA in the next few weeks will reflect and correct some of the problems dogging the full implementation of the political agreement.
Together to the end, marching to a new Zimbabwe.
PLEASE KINDLY VISIT THE HEATED DEBATES AT http://dearprestsvangirai.blogspot.com/2009/10/debate-on-mdc-statement-dont-blame-west.html
Dear Prime Minister
On the eve of the past two presidential elections, the military and security generals publicly vowed never to salute you even if you won the poll. Yet on Tuesday, in a packed stadium to mark Defence Forces Day, you finally got the salute from these generals. Of course you would have eventually been saluted by either them or their successors. Anyone could have predicted that soon or later there was no other way to go for them besides doing what any sane military leader in a democratic state is expected to do which is to salute the democratically elected Prime Minister or President of the country. We were not at all surprised when finally the generals got to do what is right in the eyes of God, the people of Zimbabwe, and the law. And by saluting you they acknowledged that military and security institutions should be immune from party politics. These institutions belong to the state that is the people of Zimbabwe and not ZanuPF nor the MDC.
But you know what really surprised us? The conditions under which you are said to have finally achieved that. Sir, if what is said by the private and international media is anything to go by then we the Zimbabwean people need divine intervention. How can you let a mere salute blind you that much? Even if they were never going to salute you, you were still going to remain the Prime Minister of Zimbabwe. A salute says more about the person saluting than the person being saluted. Saluting means one knows and respects the laws of the country, its hierarchies, and one’s place in a given hierarchy. But of course in Zimbabwe (or Africa in general) we have massively exaggerated personal egos leading to abuse of office and power.
As we see it, the salute is your prize for turning a blind eye to the generals’ professional conduct, or lack of it. If that be case then the change you promised remains just a dream.
If the salute means that the plans to reform the defence and police forces may be reversed then we say NO to the salute. If the salute means that the proposed overhaul by a board with independent and qualified members to be appointed to help bring professionalism and sanity to our forces is abandoned then we say NO to the salute. If the salute means none of the generals are held accountable for the abuse of power that saw many innocent Zimbabweans arrested, tortured, maimed, and killed then we say NO to the salute. If the salute means plans to ensure the forces serve the interests of the nation rather than those of political parties are discarded then we say NO to the salute. If the salute means justice for victims of last year's election-related violence will never be realised then we say NO to the salute. If the salute means that names of senior police and army officials responsible for the death of more than 200 MDC supporters are never revealed then we say NO to the salute. If the salute means past crimes by police and army officials are ignored and the culprits left free to continue abuse of office then we say NO to the salute. If the salute means that the Government turns a blind eye to Gono’s and Thomana’s sins present and past are forgiven and they remain in office then we say NO to the salute.
Sir, what you or your advisors might be failing to see is the fact that unless there is a complete overhaul of the country’s military and security leadership innocent people will continue to be abused and suffer. The starting point of restring law and order in Zimbabwe is by changing the heads at the military, security, and justice establishments. In the same way, if the Reserve Bank Governor’s and the Attorney General’s offices continue to be occupied by elements deeply tied to ZanuPF then real change is still a long way off. For that reason we feel you should not allow a mere salute ruin your vision. You can manage without the salute. Real change is what Zimbabwe need. And the best way to go about achieving that is not through tolerating misguided elements at the helm of the countries military, security, justice, and financial institutions. Please don’t let the salute fool you. These guys are dangerous and they need to be stopped before the country can start moving in the right direction. Please don’t become part of the rotten and corrupt leadership that has ruined the once beautiful Republic of Zimbabwe.
Fanuel Jasi. (UK).