in Stories

Chamisa said MDC would be finished if it boycotted 2008 elections

Movement for Democratic Change spokesman Nelson Chamisa said the Movement for Democratic Change would be finished as a party if it boycotted the 2008 elections.

He said although the MDC was likely to face an unlevel playing field, the party had no choice but to participate because “sitting out the election would allow ZANU-PF to claim legitimacy. Its perversion of the electoral process would not be exposed-and the MDC would likely be finished as a party”.

He was worried about the rift within the party’s women assembly saying he thought that party leader Morgan Tsvangirai and the leadership had blundered by removing Lucia Matibenga as chair.

Her removal, he argued, was potentially more destabilising than the rupture with the Arthur Mutambara faction.

 

Full cable:

 

Viewing cable 07HARARE1107, SADC TALKS STALL, BUT MDC INTENDS TO CONTEST

If you are new to these pages, please read an introduction on the structure of a cable as well as how to discuss them with others. See also the FAQs

Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

07HARARE1107

2007-12-12 09:42

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Harare

VZCZCXRO9795

RR RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHRN

DE RUEHSB #1107 3460942

ZNY CCCCC ZZH

R 120942Z DEC 07

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2224

INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY

RUEHAR/AMEMBASSY ACCRA 1685

RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 1815

RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 0425

RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 1092

RUEHDK/AMEMBASSY DAKAR 1440

RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 1871

RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 4299

RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC

RUFOADA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK

RHMFISS/EUCOM POLAD VAIHINGEN GE

RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC

RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 0942

RHEHAAA/NSC WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L HARARE 001107

 

SIPDIS

 

SIPDIS

 

AF/S FOR S. HILL,

ADDIS ABABA FOR USAU

ADDIS ABABA FOR ACSS

STATE PASS TO USAID FOR E. LOKEN AND L. DOBBINS

STATE PASS TO NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR B. PITTMAN

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/08/2013

TAGS: PREL PGOV ASEC ZI

SUBJECT: SADC TALKS STALL, BUT MDC INTENDS TO CONTEST

ELECTION

 

REF: HARARE 1004

 

Classified By: Pol/Econ Chief Glenn Warren. Reason: 1.4 (d)

 

1. (C) MDC president Morgan Tsvangirai told the Ambassador

December 11 that MDC negotiators had returned from South

Africa without an agreement. Sticking points are MDC

insistence on:

–implementation of a new constitution before the election;

–reconstitution of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC);

–cleansing of voters’ rolls and delimitation of

parliamentary constituencies under the ZEC;

–an end to intimidation of the opposition and an improved

political atmosphere to allow the MDC to hold meetings and

have access to the media;

–an election date that would give the MDC sufficient time to

prepare for elections;

–international observation of the elections.

 

2. (C) Tsvangirai said negotiations will continue in Harare.

Even if an agreement was not reached, the MDC intended to

contest the elections. Tsvangirai also stated he was

reaching out to the MDC Mutambara faction; he was confident

of a rapprochement that would see the two factions

participating as a coalition in the elections. Finally,

Tsvangirai noted the MDC, despite efforts at fundraising,

 

SIPDIS

still lacked sufficient resources.

 

3. (C) In a follow-up meeting on December 11, MDC

spokesperson Nelson Chamisa told polecon chief that the MDC

executive would meet on December 15 and the national council

on December 16. He expected both bodies to endorse a

decision to participate in elections, even if they occurred

in March. Acknowledging that the MDC could face an unlevel

playing field, Chamisa said the MDC had no choice. Sitting

out the election would allow ZANU-PF to claim legitimacy–its

perversion of the electoral process would not be exposed–and

the MDC would likely be finished as a party.

 

4. (C) While Chamisa was also confident about an accord with

the Mutambara faction, he was less sanguine about the rift

within the MDC’s Women’s Assembly (Ref). He thought

Tsvangirai and the leadership had blundered in removing Lucia

 

SIPDIS

Matibenga as chair–her removal was potentially more

destabilizing than the rupture with the Mutambara faction–

but he was cautiously hopeful the damage could be repaired in

this weekend’s meetings.

 

——-

Comment

——-

 

5. (C) All signs now point to March elections. Despite the

deteriorating economy and wide-spread disenchantment with

ZANU-PF, the MDC faces an uphill struggle. It has not yet

healed its internal divisions and has not yet begun to

seriously campaign. It is under-resourced. And the

political atmosphere remains largely unchanged. Whether or

not there is a SADC agreement, crucial to MDC chances is the

creation of democratic space, a development of which we see

no signs.

MCGEE

(5 VIEWS)

Don't be shellfish... Please SHAREShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail this to someonePrint this page

Write a Comment

Comment