ZANU PF is headed for a showdown with Sadc over the party’s refusal to implement a Global Political Agreement (GPA) resolution to effect security sector, media and other reforms before the holding of the next election.
Report by Moses Matenga
The party has, through its senior officials, publicly declared a total shut out of any further negotiations on the issues despite insistence by Sadc that all reforms must be implemented as agreed in the electoral roadmap and the GPA.
Zanu PF chief negotiator Patrick Chinamasa, the party’s security secretary Sydney Sekeramayi, who is also Zimbabwe’s National Security minister, and Zanu PF legal secretary and Defence minister Emmerson Mnangagwa have openly declared no security sector reforms would take place, describing the suggestion as “nonsensical”.
The defiance by Zanu PF has irked the Sadc facilitation team led by South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma which yesterday declared that its role was to make sure the agreed reforms were implemented ahead of elections expected later this year.
Spokesperson of the facilitation team Lindiwe Zulu yesterday told NewsDay that they would engage Zanu PF and other political parties over the recent remarks by Zanu PF officials. Zulu said nothing in the GPA was a closed chapter.
Chinamasa said on Monday that the role of Sadc was merely to facilitate.
He said the regional body had no right to impose anything on Zimbabwe, adding that the security sector realignment issue and media reforms were a closed chapter.
But Zulu said: “The purpose of the facilitation team is to make sure what is in the GPA is implemented and to make sure all the necessary institutions and frameworks for free and fair elections are in place. That is the responsibility of Sadc.”
She added: “Nothing in the GPA is a closed chapter until it’s completed. I cannot, however, respond to the statements (by the Zanu PF officials) outside our meetings and the only reason I am commenting on this is to set the record straight as the matter is already in the public domain.
“We can only advise them (Zanu PF) in the meeting not through newspapers,” she said.
Some hardliners in Zanu PF are reportedly attempting to elbow Sadc out of Zimbabwe politics to stop the body from pushing for the implementation of agreed
reforms. The party claims security sector reforms were a product of regime change agenda financed by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Sekeramayi said at the weekend: “That (security reforms) is nonsense . . . We are saying that to all intents and purposes it’s a lot of nonsense — we will not accept it. Nobody should tell us to do security sector reforms, security sector alignment and that type of rubbish. That will not be done.”
Defence minister Mnangagwa also said the same recently, arguing that security sector reforms were not part of the GPA deal and that the only outstanding issues were the closure of pirate radios and the removal of sanctions.
Last week Chinamasa told diplomats that their push for security sector realignment would not succeed and was “a closed chapter”.
Article 13 (b) of the GPA, however, clearly reads: “. . . all State organs and institutions strictly observe the principles of the rule of law and remain non-partisan and impartial. Laws and regulations governing State organs and institutions are strictly adhered to and those violating them be penalised without fear or favour and recruitment of policies and practices be conducted in a manner that ensures that no political or other form of favouritism is practiced.”
Zimbabwe’s military and police commanders have openly declared their allegiance to Zanu PF — going as far as saying they would not accept any other leader outside Zanu PF to lead this country even were they to win elections.