Wednesday, April 23, 2008

State propaganda calls for Mugabe-led unity govt

A Zimbabwean state newspaper called today for a transitional government of national unity under Robert Mugabe.The Herald, which is seen not just as a mouthpiece for President Mugabe's Zanu (PF) party but also as a barometer of its mood, said that political tensions in Zimbabwe made it impossible to hold a run-off vote.

In an editorial, the newspaper said that a transitional government should seek the help of the South African Development Community (SADC) and beyond to write a new constitution adopted after a national referendum, and to organise new elections.

“It stands to reason that, the transitional government of national unity, negotiated by the two leading contending parties, under the mediation of SADC, supported by the international community, should be led by the incumbent President,” it said.

The opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has already rejected suggestions of a second-round of voting because it claims that its leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, won the March 29 presidential contest.The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission has yet to release any results from the presidential election, and has for some days been engaged in a recount of the parliamentary ballot, after initially announcing that the MDC had dislodged Zanu (PF) from power.

Mr Tsvangirai - who was today visiting Mozambique - has accused Mr Mugabe of trying to rig the election to cling on to power after 28 years.There are signs of growing regional impatience with Mr Mugabe from neighbours, who have until now refused to take a hard line with the former liberation hero despite an economic crisis that has brought unemployment and hunger to millions of Zimbabweans.

In an unprecedented action, southern African states refused to allow a Chinese ship carrying arms to landlocked Zimbabwe to unload.In his toughest comments yet, Jacob Zuma, leader of South Africa's ruling party leader and widely expected to be the country's next president, said: “It’s not acceptable. It’s not helping the Zimbabwean people who have gone out to ... elect the kind of party and presidential candidate they want, exercising their constitutional right.”

Source: Times Online

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