March 31, 2012

Poll decision by May, says president

Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe has announced that the country would go for a referendum in May, failing which it would revert to the Lancaster House Constitution and hold elections before the end of 2012. The president also challenged Zanu-PF leaders afraid of elections to join the MDC formations that were trying to stall efforts to hold the polls.

Addressing the 88th Ordinary Session of the Central Committee at the party's headquarters in Harare, Mugabe said members of the South African government had no power to interfere in Zimbabwean affairs. He said President Jacob Zuma, in his own capacity, was the only one with the privilege to facilitate dialogue between Zimbabwean parties. "South Africa are not our facilitators, but President Zuma as was President Mbeki. We cannot be facilitated by the whole of South Africa. "We are a sovereign State and we cannot be led by the government of South Africa. Let's not be told that South Africa is our facilitator."

President Mugabe instructed the party's Global Political Agreement (GPA) negotiators to advise their colleagues that the Constitution-making process should be concluded. "Let's conclude the process, whether we agree or disagree. The dance we have had for the past four years is over. Let us have an election and end this animal called inclusive Government." The GPA, he said, was not signed to craft a new Constitution. He said the parties had agreed to go for an election using the Kariba Draft, but changed after civil society complained it was left out. (The Herald/sadocc)

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