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Mutambara embarrassed

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MDC members supporting Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) Arthur Mutambara were yesterday thrown out of a meeting of the three governing parties to address political violence.

The officials led by former MDC chairman Jourbert Mudzumwe tried to sneak into the Harare International Conference Centre (HICC) where national councils of the two MDC factions and Zanu PF’s central committee were meeting.

But they were barred by State security agents manning the entry points.

Mudzumwe tried to force his way in, but was blocked by the State agents who at one time had to empty the HICC to flush out Mutambara’s group.

The spectacle attracted various people including journalists and politicians from other parties who had come for the indaba.

There was no place for the DPM at the podium for the principals in the unity government as his successor Welshman Ncube took his place for the first time alongside President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.

Ncube ousted Mutambara as MDC party leader at a congress in January, but despite initially accepting defeat the DPM made a U-turn and refused to make way for the Industry and Commerce minister.

At the meeting, the new MDC secretary-general Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga sat alongside her counterparts, Zanu PF’s Didymus Mutasa and Tendai Biti of MDC-T. Contacted for comment Mutambara, who did not show up at the HICC, said he was in a meeting.

His spokesperson Maxwell Zimuto was also not immediately available for comment as his phone went unanswered. The High Court will next week hear a case where MDC wants Mutambara barred from “masquerading” as the party leader.

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