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22Sep/21Off

Global Political Agreement 2008

At another level, the emphasis on state power, outside of the party`s organizing work, has increased tensions within each party. In 2010, the MDC-T saw recurring problems of organization and structure within the party, as well as internal party violence, which led to the 2005 division (Raftopoulos, 2006), because the subjects remained largely unattended. As in 2005, reported fighting within the party focused on tensions between the offices of president and secretary-general, with the role of the "kitchen cabinet" coming to the fore (Zimbabwe Independent, 2010). Beyond the modified contexts in which these tensions arose, there are three differences between the fighting in 2010 and the fighting before the 2005 tragedy. First, in the previous period, donors largely supported the removal of the Welshman Ncube, the secretary general of the unified MDC and one of the main protagonists of the 2005 split, believing that he was an obstacle to strengthening the powers of the presidency. Recently, due to its management of the economy, donors have been far behind Tendai Biti (Zimbabwe Independent, 2010). Second, Ncube`s social base was weak within the party in 2005 and the ethnization of divisive politics led to a rapid demonization of his person, not only within the party, but also in the allied civic movement. In the current period, although Tsvangirais` position in the party and in the country is unassailable, Bitis` position is much stronger than that of Ncube in 2005. In another twist of this internal struggle, Mugabe Tsvangirai reportedly warned against Biti`s withdrawal, both because of his effectiveness as a minister (Zimbabwe Independent, 2010) and probably Bitis` role in negotiations for a future normalization of relations between Zimbabwe and the international financial institutions (IFIs). Third, it is highly unlikely that the current tensions within the party will lead to division, as they did in 2005. This is because Biti has neither a sufficient political base nor the political space in the current conjuncture to take such a step, and Tsvangirai, for his part, believes that divisions within party structures can be overcome without compromising his position. Both are aware that a new division within the MDC would be catastrophic. M.

Mbeki also expressed the hope that the elections scheduled for 2008 would "provide a golden and strategic opportunity" to begin "the process leading to the normalization of the situation in Zimbabwe" and the "resumption of the development and reconstruction process aimed at improving the lives of all Zimbabweans on a sustainable basis". [3] In response, both MDCs presented their conditions for free and fair elections, stressing that the existing Constitution was the "main cause of many of the problems" facing the country and that, therefore, new elections "should only take place after the entry into force of a new democratic national Constitution" (MDC, 2007). . . .

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