Tsvangirai to attend Cabinet meeting

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Harare - Zimbabwean Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has confirmed that he will attend the Cabinet meeting due to take place on Wednesday following his party's decision to end its boycott of the meetings.

Tsvangirai told journalists on Tuesday that he was committed to the success of the inclusive government, stressing the importance of resolving all outstanding issues in the Global Political Agreement (GPA).

"I will be attending in line with the decision we took, which allows this process to move forward," he said.

The larger of the two MDC factions led by Tsvangirai, which had been boycotting Cabinet and council of ministers meetings since 16 October, citing unfulfilled promises by President Robert Mugabe and his Zanu-PF party, announced at the end of a SADC troika summit in Maputo last week, that it would call off the boycott.

The Cabinet meetings, usually held on Tuesdays and chaired by Mugabe, could not be held on Tuesday because Mugabe was not available after attending the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation summit that ended in Egypt on Monday.

Tsvangirai said the inclusive government he formed with Mugabe and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara of the smaller MDC was an important step in efforts to reconstruct the country.

"What we want to ensure is that this process is not reversed. We don't want the country to slide back to the days of acrimony and we have to clear all the obstacles we faced to make progress," he said.

Tsvangirai said he and his party would give President Mugabe one month to fully implement the power-sharing deal signed by the major political parties of Zimbabwe in September 2008.

On Tuesday, South Africa's International Relations and Cooperation Director General, Ayanda Ntsaluba, said government was satisfied with the agreement reached between ZANU-PF and the MDC.

Ntsaluba said he hoped that despite their differences, the two parties would be able to engage in a meaningful and constructive way.

"We are indeed very happy that the MDC has gone back to the inclusive government and encouraged by the fact that all parties in Zimbabwe, regardless of the differences, communicated very clearly to the heads of the region that the inclusive government is the only game in town and that everything should be done to make sure that the inclusive government becomes successful.

"We are very happy, particularly about the decisions that have been taken regarding the timeline to attend to all outstanding matters within about 15 days, maximum 30 days after which we would expect that there would be verification by the organ Troika to see that indeed that the decisions that would have been taken have been taken," said the Director General.