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Mutambara said Mugabe gave Tsvangirai crumbs

Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara told a visiting United States congressional delegation led by Donald Payne that he felt betrayed because he had encouraged Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai to join the inclusive government because he thought President Robert Mugabe would stick to the commitments he made in the Global Political Agreement.

Mugabe had, however, only given Tsvangirai crumbs in the GPA, and now Tsvangirai was holding on to those crumbs.

He implored the delegation to “help us help ourselves” by helping the inclusive government succeed and prepare for free and fair elections saying the success of the inclusive government would shame ZANU-PF.

 

Full cable:


Viewing cable 09HARARE477, CODEL PAYNE: GOZ AND CIVICS PLEAD FOR HEALTH,

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Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

09HARARE477

2009-06-09 08:56

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Harare

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INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE

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RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC

RUZEJAA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK

RHMFISS/EUCOM POLAD VAIHINGEN GE

RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC

RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 2166

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C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 04 HARARE 000477

 

SIPDIS

 

AF/S FOR B. WALCH

DRL FOR N. WILETT

ADDIS ABABA FOR USAU

ADDIS ABABA FOR ACSS

STATE PASS TO NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 06/09/2019

TAGS: ASEC KDEM PGOV PHUM PREL ZI

SUBJECT: CODEL PAYNE: GOZ AND CIVICS PLEAD FOR HEALTH,

EDUCATION ASSISTANCE

 

REF: HARARE 456

 

Classified By: Ambassador James D. McGEE for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d).

 

——-

SUMMARY

——-

 

1. (SBU) During his May 29-31 visit to Zimbabwe, Congressman

Donald Payne (D-NJ) and three congressional staffers met with

senior government officials including President Robert Mugabe

(ref), Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, Deputy Prime

Minister Arthur Mutambara, Health Minister Dr. Henry

Madzorera (MDC-T), Agriculture Minister Joseph Made (ZANU-PF)

(septel), a wide variety of civil society leaders, the Mayor

of Harare, business leaders (septel) and diplomats. The

delegation met with numerous senior-level officials who

stressed the need to re-engage. Civil society leaders

implored for social-sector assistance and debated how to best

engage with the inclusive government. Violence victims, in

contrast, bemoaned the lack of progress towards improving

human rights and described ZANU-PF’s foot-dragging as a delay

tactic to rebuild violence and torture structures in rural

areas. In addition, the range of contacts presented the

visitors with a window into the frustrations of Zimbabweans

with the lack of progress and the perceived need for donor

assistance to help the inclusive government succeed even

while security chiefs and hard-liners seek to frustrate

progress. END SUMMARY.

 

——————————————— ——-

Tsvangirai: “We Can’t Keep Focusing On The Negative”

——————————————— ——-

 

2. (SBU) Congressman Payne, his delegation, and the

Ambassador called on Prime Minister Tsvangirai at his

residence on the morning of May 30. Tsvangirai briefed the

group on the current state of affairs and laid out the needs

of the inclusive government to succeed. Tsvangirai said that

if he had chosen to stay out of the government following the

flawed June 2008 presidential run-off election, Zimbabwe

would be “heading to Somalia.” Despite his initial

skepticism about how long the inclusive government would

last, Tsvangirai boasted that the arrangement has worked

“beyond our expectations.” Nonetheless, he conceded, all is

not rosy.

 

3. (SBU) Tsvangirai acknowledged continued resistance from

the military, Reserve Bank, and former ZANU-PF members who

now seek to undermine the inclusive government’s success.

Regarding the spate of politically-motivated arrests,

Tsvangirai remarked that we “have to keep moving forward

while putting out fires” as he sidestepped the issue. The PM

described free and fair elections as the ultimate prize, and

the inclusive government as a process to produce the enabling

environment and constitution that will make that possible.

“We can’t keep focusing on the negative.”

 

4. (SBU) He implored Payne and the Ambassador to give the

inclusive government a chance. Tsvangirai asked for help

with agricultural inputs and credit, even while acknowledging

that financing will be difficult as long as the land tenure

Qthat financing will be difficult as long as the land tenure

issue remains unresolved. He described the civil service as

“demotivated” as the government has made little investment in

social sectors–education and health in particular–in the

last ten years. Tsvangirai declared that the success of the

inclusive government in correcting these problems will be the

demise of those who have created “problems” and are seeking

to undermine the current arrangement.

 

———————————–

 

HARARE 00000477 002 OF 004

 

 

Ministers: “Help Us Help Ourselves”

———————————–

 

5. (SBU) In a separate meeting with Deputy Prime Minister

Arthur Mutambara, Deputy Minister of Agriculture-designate

Roy Bennett (MDC-T), and Health Minister Dr. Henry Madzorera

(MDC-T), the three stressed the need to help the inclusive

government succeed — preferably through immediate assistance

to health and education.

 

6. (SBU) While asking for help, Mutambara acknowledged the

recent farm invasions, numerous court cases against

journalists and abductees, and the continued delay in

appointing Bennett to the Ministry of Agriculture as examples

of ZANU-PF hard-liners’ resistance to fully engaging in and

committing to the inclusive government. Mutambara explained

that by referring some of the remaining “sticking issues” to

SADC, the MDC hopes that “even Mugabe” can’t win. Mutambara

said he feels betrayed because he encouraged Tsvangirai to

join the inclusive government because he thought Mugabe would

stick to the commitments he made in the Global Political

Agreement (GPA). However, now he sees that Mugabe only gave

Tsvangirai crumbs in the GPA, and now he’s even holding on to

those crumbs. He implored the delegation to “help us help

ourselves” by helping the inclusive government succeed and

prepare for free and fair elections. Mutambara told us that

the success of the inclusive government would shame ZANU-PF.

 

7. (SBU) Bennett began by thanking the U.S. for its continued

support of the Zimbabwean people before explaining the

continued problems the military poses. Senior security

officials, Bennett told us, are bolstering the “dead wood” in

ZANU-PF and continue to avoid saluting the Prime Minister in

public. Nevertheless, Bennett noted the changes across

Zimbabwe as MDC rallies draw large numbers — evidence of the

continued support for Tsvangirai and the MDC. Bennett went

on to explain that villagers across Zimbabwe consistently

speak of two main issues that should be resolved: the

continued tenure of Reserve Bank Gvernor Gideon Gono and the

need for some form of justice. All agreed that without

justice for the perpetrators of violence, the country will

not be able to heal and move forward. Bennett also told us

that Attorney General Johannes Tomana and other senior level

ZANU-PF officials continue to use their positions to take

land and houses, and threaten those magistrates who would

rule against land seizures.

 

8. (SBU) Dr. Madzorera described health as the most important

social service and claimed the Zimbabwean public will judge

the inclusive government’s success on how well it delivers

health services. He repeated Mutambara’s and Bennett’s

assertions that the failure of the inclusive government will

be the failure of the MDC. Dr. Madzorera thanked the U.S.

for its health-related assistance, citing the cholera

response, HIV/AIDS funding, and the significant U.S.

contributions to the Global Fund for AIDS, TB, and Malaria.

Qcontributions to the Global Fund for AIDS, TB, and Malaria.

He went on to describe four areas that need attention: (1)

human resources, particularly retention and recruitment of

workers who are in the diaspora, (2) better supplies of drugs

and medicine, (3) equipment (NOTE: much of the hospital

equipment currently in use is old and/or in disrepair. END

NOTE.), and (4) communication and transport, including

ambulances to move patients from rural clinics to district

hospitals and long-range radios for rural areas. Dr.

Madzorera implored Payne and the Ambassador for more

assistance, asserting that it can be provided in the form of

material support such as supplies that never have to go

through the central government.

 

———————————–

Civics Ask for Education Assistance

 

HARARE 00000477 003 OF 004

 

 

———————————–

 

9. (SBU) The Ambassador later hosted a lunch for Congressman

Payne and his delegation and representatives of leading civil

society organizations (CSOs) including Otto Saki and Irene

Petras from Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR), Jenni

Williams and Magodonga Mahlangu from Women of Zimbabwe Arise

(WOZA), Raymond Majongwe from the Progressive Teachers’ Union

of Zimbabwe (PTUZ), Takura Zhangazha from the Media Institute

of Southern Africa (MISA), and MacDonald Lewanika from the

Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition. Lewanika and Saki explained

civil society’s efforts to monitor the global political

agreement (GPA) and engagement in the constitutional process.

Lewanika described the predominant attitude as one of

reluctant acknowledgment of the necessity of civic engagement

with what most recognize as a flawed process. Those groups

advocating non-participation, with Lovemore Madhuku and the

National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) as the most outspoken

player in that group, are in a minority. (NOTE: In a

subsequent conversation with poloff on June 4, Williams told

poloff that WOZA conducted a survey of members and determined

that their position is not far from the NCA’s. Williams

lamented that most CSO leaders have developed their opinions

without consulting their members. END NOTE.)

 

10. (SBU) Williams pleaded for assistance for public

education, such as chalk, school books, and supplies,

asserting that if efforts are not made to revive the

educational system there will be a lost generation of

uneducated children and that history “would judge us harshly

if we did so.” Majongwe reinforced Williams’ appeal and

suggested that assistance could be provided directly to

Zimbabwe’s teachers and channeled directly to schools,

bypassing corrupt elements in the ministry. He provided a

concept paper which he sent to the Congressman describing

potential strategies for education sector assistance.

 

—————————-

Visit to Decrepit Waterworks

—————————-

 

11. (SBU) On Sunday May 31, Congressman Payne and his

delegation visited the Morton Jaffray waterworks where they

were escorted by Harare Mayor Much Masunda and Town Clerk Dr.

Tendai Malachi along with the USAID Mission Director and

USAID/OFDA Humanitarian Program Specialist. Morton Jaffray

supplies the majority of water to the greater Harare area and

needs rehabilitation costing roughly US$135 million to

operate at full capacity. The Senior Operations Officer for

the World Bank in Harare, who joined the tour, explained the

US$15 million project that the World Bank plans to implement

nationwide, with US$10-12 million designated for Harare.

Emphasizing the extended time frame and high cost of repairs,

the USAID Mission Director highlighted that the limited

levels of current USAID/OFDA funding to address water and

sanitation challenges was best focused on ongoing

Qsanitation challenges was best focused on ongoing

cholera-prevention at a community level. USAID/OFDA

currently focuses on public health and hygiene promotion and

the distribution of basic hygiene items (soap, buckets,

tablets for household water treatment) to prevent and

mitigate outbreaks of diarrheal disease. (COMMENT: In our

view, future USG investments should complement the World

Bank’s large scale investments in central water systems by

working with communities on small, community-managed

projects. END COMMENT.)

 

———————————

Victims Seek Justice, Not Amnesty

———————————

 

12. (C) Congressman Payne and the delegation also met with

 

HARARE 00000477 004 OF 004

 

 

victims of the ZANU-PF regime who lamented the continued

politicization of the courts and police. Chris Dhlamini, the

MDC Chief of Security who was abducted in November, tortured

by state security officers, and now faces charges of bombing

police stations, described his abduction and torture to the

group. Human Rights lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa emphasized the

need for significant reform to ensure police, courts, and the

attorney general act fairly and impartially. In addition,

she said that perpetrators must face justice. Fidelis

Mudimu, the Program Officer with the Counselling Services

Unit, reported that ZANU-PF bases and war veterans are

already starting to meet again, particularly in Mashonaland

East, and are using the current period of calm to reorganize

to use violence once again against citizens. President of

the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions Lovemore Matombo echoed

the sentiment that ZANU-PF has not been “rehabilitated” and

cannot be trusted. Mtetwa believes that ZANU-PF is

deliberately moving slowly towards implementing the GPA in

order to rebuild its structures for a future campaign of

violence and intimidation.

 

——-

COMMENT

——-

 

13. (C) Congressman Payne’s visit to Zimbabwe was the first

CODEL we have had in recent memory and provided an excellent

forum for increased engagement on the way forward with

government and civil society leadership. While government

leaders continue to push for assistance, particularly with

the social sector, Zimbabweans in and out of the government

have grave concerns about the security forces and the

continued lack of justice and democratic space. Although the

Prime Minister and senior MDC leadership tend to paint these

concerns as mere distractions, they have the potential to

undermine the inclusive government’s success with or without

increased foreign assistance. These pleas for help and

financing are being made even while human rights abusers

continue to walk free and the leaders of the 2008 election

violence rebuild their bases and threaten citizens. END

COMMENT.

 

14. (U) NOTE: This cable has not been cleared by

Congressman Payne. END NOTE.

 

MCGEE

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