EXILED former cabinet minister Walter Mzembi has predicted dialogue and the formation of a government of national unity (GNU) after this year’s general elections.
The last GNU was formed in 2009 between the opposition MDCs and the ruling Zanu PF. It was led by late former President Robert Mugabe and his nemesis, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai until 2013 when the arrangement ended.
Negotiated with the help of Zimbabwe’s neighbours, the GNU became Zimbabwe’s only viable governance option following disputed elections, politically motivated violence and the abuse of state security agencies to thwart opposition electoral activities.
Now President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who is likely to run against main contender, Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa has been accused of the same electoral outrages as his predecessor.
CCC rallies and meetings have been stopped unceremoniously, a number of its activists kept in remand over protracted periods while some have been killed in cold blood.
Mzembi, has been holed up in South Africa since the 2017 coup which hounded him and other members of Zanu PF’s G40 faction out of the country.
“… what I see coming (is a) constitutional stalemate which may be predicated by a defaulted Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) delimitation report if challenged. It will usher us to the next stage of political engagement and inclusive dialogue,” said Mzembi.
“These are not my feelings I am expressing, I am just analysing what is going on and what can possibly happen.”
Dialogue and formation of a GNU have been said to be a likely solution to Zimbabwe’s faltering economy as was the case with the last coalition administration.
Mugabe and Tsvangirai’s GNU paused a decade-long economic crisis that had eroded salaries and destroyed livelihoods across the country.
For five years Zimbabwe’s economy stabilised with some sectors of industry finally getting a breath of fresh air after 10 years of struggling.
Civil servants salaries, which have been a challenge since 2016, during the GNU were set in US dollars.
The then dollarised economy eased the burden on communities that had been surviving on help from those with families in the diaspora.