GPA still not fulfilled after three years

September 16, 2011 at 7:01 am 1 comment

By Tererai Karimakwenda

This week marks the third anniversary of the signing of the Global Political 
Agreement (GPA) that created Zimbabwe’s unity government, and the majority 
of the issues that were agreed to by the political parties have still not 
been implemented.

The agreement was facilitated by the Southern Africa Development Community 
(SADC), with the hope of ending political violence, stabilising the country’s 
battered economy and creating a roadmap to credible elections.

Yet three years later, negotiations are still moving at a snail’s pace and 
it has become clear that ZANU PF is blocking progress. Their campaign of 
arrests, violence and intimidation of MDC loyalists and civic groups has 
Media and electoral reforms mandated by the GPA have not been made. And 
oppressive legislation, such as the Public Order and Security Act (POSA) and 
the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (AIPPA) have not 
been repealed.

Elections are expected in the country in 2012, as announced by Robert Mugabe 
recently, without consultation of the MDC formations. This was a 
continuation of unilateral decision making by Mugabe, which has 
characterised the unity government for three years.

SADC leaders, acknowledging that progress has been too slow, resolved to 
appoint a three –member team months ago, to assist the Joint Monitoring and 
Implementation Committee (JOMIC) in moving the process forward. That team 
has yet to be appointed and there appears to be no urgency.

McDonald Lewanika, director of the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, told SW 
Radio Africa that the GPA was meant to be a transitional mechanism, and 
three years ago it was “inconceivable” the arrangement would last so long.

“It’s disappointing but we Zimbabweans are to blame. As long as we act as 
though everything is fine and we do not protest or register our discontent 
with the status quo, the world will not assist us,” Lewanika explained.

He pointed to the recent hikes in power charges from the Zimbabwe Electric 
Supply Authority (ZESA), the lack of running water, poor service delivery 
and high unemployment that ordinary Zimbabweans struggle with daily, as 
incentives to speak out.

Asked why there are no protests in Zimbabwe similar to those that toppled 
dictatorships in North Africa, Lewanika said people are suffering and sooner 
or later they will say enough is enough.

“Catalytic events are not predictable. It can still happen in Zimbabwe,” he 

Innocent Gonese, the MDC-T parliamentary chief whip, said they expected some 
problems at the outset but did not expect so much resistance to change from 
their partners in the unity government.

“We have had lots of problems and at times it seemed on the brink of 
collapse,” Gonese explained.

He added that the country is moving in the right direction and significant 
progress has been made towards the drafting of a new constitution. But he 
admitted the environment for peaceful, free and fair elections does not 

The MDC-T legislator referred to a recent attack by ZANU PF thugs, who 
terrorised people outside parliament while Robert Mugabe called for an end 
to violence during the opening ceremonies.

The Mugabe regime has remained in control of the security sector, whose 
chiefs continue to publicly declare their support for ZANU PF and refuse to 
acknowledge Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and his party.

“That is a grave concern. There seems to be no genuine intention to change 
that,” Gonese said. He insisted that SADC, as guarantors of the GPA, need to 
ensure that it is respected and fully implemented ahead of elections.

“It is the only way that the outcome will be respected and reflect the will 
of the people of Zimbabwe,” Gonese insisted.

You can hear more on the third anniversary of the signing of the GPA on the 
programme Crisis Analysis.


Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Richard Wedlock  |  September 16, 2011 at 3:56 pm

    Ha, I appreciate that is a grave concern but still worried not any change their in GPA. Hope the political parties are not agreeing to development in this issue. Thanks mate!


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