MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai yesterday predicted that another coalition government was in the offing as President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF government was likely to re-engage the opposition party to rescue the free-falling economy.
Addressing party supporters in Mabvuku, Harare, Tsvangirai said Mugabe had “no option than to call me to the negotiating table” for a new Government of National Unity as the MDC-T had a proven record of turning around the comatose economy.
The former Prime Minister, during the inclusive government which ended last July, however, said this time round, he would force Mugabe to implement the agreed items in the new power-sharing pact.
“They (Mugabe and Zanu PF) will come, there is nowhere to go,” Tsvangirai told about 2 000 supporters at a rally in Mabvuku yesterday.
“They will say to us, ‘come and let us have dialogue and find solutions to our problems’. We will tell them to swallow their pride. We had another Government of National Unity in which Mugabe refused to implement agreed items and this time, we will demand full implementation of agreed items.”
Tsvangirai said the MDC-T had an emergency economic revival plan which they will release once Mugabe, “who has already admitted failure”, approached them for a power-sharing deal.
“They stole the elections, and now they are stranded. They don’t know how to proceed. Companies are closing, people have no money, they are losing jobs and the economy is collapsing,” he said.
He added: “If it will happen that way for the purpose of finding a national solution, this time we will demand that we have to return to legitimacy. Mugabe’s government came from a stolen election and therefore, after the economy is revived, we will hold a free and fair election.
“It seems they have given everyone an instruction to loot wherever they are as reflected by the salarygate. If Mugabe is serious about dealing with corruption, he should look into himself. If a fish is rotting, it starts from the head.”
But Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo dismissed Tsvangirai’s prediction as fallacious and “preposterous”.
“They (MDC-T) were in the government for the past five years and they did not bring dramatic changes to the economy,” Gumbo said.
“We have a blueprint and in six months’ time, things will start shaping up. I don’t think that one can dispute the challenges the country is facing. Yes, companies are closing and people are losing jobs, but we believe things will be sorted out soon. The people of Zimbabwe gave us the mandate because they have confidence in us.”
Turning to the infighting in the MDC-T, Tsvangirai lashed out at “party rebels” describing those calling on him to step down as “opportunists”.
In an apparent jibe at MDC-T secretary-general Tendai Biti and suspended deputy treasurer-general Elton Mangoma, Tsvangirai said party officials opposed to his administration were free to leave instead of pushing him “to leave so that they take over”.
At the rally, senior MDC-T members chanted slogans denouncing both Mangoma and Biti, describing them as traitors.