HomePoliticsTalks Deadline Lapses Without any Progress

Talks Deadline Lapses Without any Progress

THE 15-day deadline set by the Sadc organ on politics, defence and security to kick-start negotiations to end the impasse over the outstanding issues of the global political agreement (GPA) lapses today with no indications as to when the talks will commence.

A mini-summit of the Sadc troika on November 5 in Maputo, Mozambique, resolved that Zanu PF and the two MDC formations’ negotiators should open talks within 15 days and find a solution to the sticking points within 30 days.

President Robert Mugabe, Prime Minister  Morgan Tsvangirai and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara — principals of the GPA — met last Friday and set the agenda of the negotiations but the talks failed to take place because negotiators from the MDC-M, ministers Welshman Ncube and Priscillah Misihairabwi-Mushonga, were attending an investment conference in South Africa.

A meeting on Monday between Tsvangirai and Zanu PF negotiators, Patrick Chinamasa and Nicholas Goche, and MDC-T’s Tendai Biti did not last long because of the absence of Ncube and Misihairabwi-Mushonga. Economic Development minister Elton Mangoma — a negotiator from the MDC-T — was also out of the country. Biti last night said a date for the negotiations to commence was yet to be set because of the absence of the MDC-M negotiators.

“I don’t know when the negotiations will take place,” Biti said. “Ncube and Priscillah are not in the country and the talks cannot go on without them.”

Tsvangirai yesterday said the negotiators would meet soon.

“The whole urgency of the matter is to try and rescue the credibility of the inclusive government,” he said before he left the country for Morocco and Libya, the current African Union chair, where he said he will brief Muammar Gadaffi on the unity government.

Tsvangirai and Mugabe have disagreed on the appointment of key government officials such as the central bank governor and the attorney-general and provincial governors.

“I am taking the opportunity of being in the [North Africa] region to meet the chairman of the AU about the developments in the country and what progress we are making,” Tsvangirai told reporters at Harare International Airport before his departure. — Staff Writer.

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