President Robert Mugabe is too old to lie in the manner he did about the outcome of the just-ended Sadc extraordinary summit, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai said yesterday.
The PM said this while addressing more than 10 000 party supporters who thronged Mkoba Stadium in Gweru.
“The problem is that people like lies and evade the truth. An old man (Mugabe) is lying about what happened in South Africa. President Mugabe was there with his delegation and I was also there with my own delegation and he should not lie to us about what happened,” Tsvangirai said before he explained what he said transpired in South Africa.
“Some lies are self-defeating. The resolution was very clear on Zimbabwe,” the Premier said.
President Mugabe and Zanu PF propagandists through the State media claim the Livingstone Troika resolutions were rejected at last week’s meeting in South Africa.
Tsvangirai attacked army officials and State agents whom he said were intimidating people and threatening not to recognise anyone other than President Mugabe as leader of the country.
He blamed the military men’s behaviour on President Mugabe who he said gives policy direction to the institutions as Commander-in-Chief and was supposed to have control over them.
“I asked President Mugabe that you call yourself Commander-in- Chief who gives policy direction to these is institutions. If they are not sent by you it means they are defying your command or they are not respecting you. I told him they were doing what they were doing in your name so you cannot deny responsibility for what is happening,” Tsvangirai said.
“We will not argue with soldiers and police. They are national organs, but they are individuals with their own attitudes. They say they don’t want Tsvangirai. What is their problem? Did I take your wife?” he said. “If you want politics, remove uniforms and we will show you.”
Tsvangirai said Zanu PF had run out of ideas and were abusing President Mugabe who wanted to retire. The Premier said in one of their meetings with President Mugabe, he had advised him to rest and he was not against that.
Tsvangirai said President Mugabe was clear to him that he wanted to rest, but conceded he was worried about factionalism in his party that would be disastrous if he retired.
“I warned him and he wants out. I don’t know whether it is fear, but he is old. He needs help from young people like me. He is just old.
“President Mugabe was asked to present at the Sadc Summit and said he wanted to thank (former South African President Nelson) Mandela (instead of President Zuma),” said Tsvangirai. “He is just old.”
Tsvangirai told his supporters not to listen to what President Mugabe and Zanu PF were saying about elections asserting his party would never engage in an election without a clear roadmap.
“Never again shall we hold an election that is not legitimate. Zanu PF has run out of ideas and continues to blame the MDC. As a way forward, we need a constitution first, a referendum then we sit down and set a date for elections. He cannot do that alone. Don’t be fooled. If I am not satisfied, he will go it alone. They want to do what they did on June 27. The election must be supported by Sadc, Zimbabweans, African Union and the international community then we go for elections,” Tsvangirai said.