Saturday, September 01, 2007

End game for Mugabe 'could be in sight'

Saturday September 1

The "end game" for Zimbabwe's president Robert Mugabe could be in sight, the African country's opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai said as he wound up a week-long Australian visit.

The leader of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) was also forced on Saturday to defend claims from within the Mugabe regime, that his visit was to encourage further sanctions against his crisis-hit country.

"There have been accusations that I am here to advocate for sanctions against the country. Far from it," Mr Tsvangirai told reporters before flying out of Sydney.

"We would like to engage all democratic progressive governments in the world, to draw their attention to (Zimbabwe's) crisis.

"I'm sure that in engaging some of the progressive democratic nations of the world we are advancing the interests of Zimbabwe rather than undermining Zimbabwe."

Mr Tsvangirai said March next year would see the staging of presidential along with parliamentary and local government elections in Zimbabwe.

South African president Thabo Mbeki has taken on a mediation role ahead of the elections and Mr Tsvangirai said he hoped this would lead to a demilitarisation of the electoral process, international observers and also give Zimbabwe's diaspora the vote.

"If we were to go through a similar exercise we have had over the last three elections it will be a pre-determined outcome," Mr Tsvangirai said.

"But if there are free and fair election conditions, there is no doubt in my mind that the people will win.

"The people in Zimbabwe are very much conscious of their dire straits ... they are also conscious that the end-game is probably near."

Mr Tsvangirai said his country was in the midst of an economic catastrophe with up to six million people dependent on food aid, widespread unemployment and inflation at a run-away 12,000 per cent.

"The nearest country with the next high rate of inflation is Burma only at 37 per cent," Mr Tsvangirai said.

"It is in freefall, this is an economy that has shrunk almost 60 per cent.

"The situation is dangerous because unless the haemorrhage is stopped we may actually have a serious collapse."

1 comment:

Knowledge is Power said...

Random Man saw opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai speak at UNSW on Thurday.

over 10,000 % inflation

He gave the example of buying something for 5 cents in the morning and 2 hours later it would cost $15 ... bit problem because a lot of the population is living on less than a dollar a day.