Sunday, September 14, 2008

Can unity deal turn around Zimbabwe?

from the Tanzania Standard

Zimbabwe's power-sharing deal faces a tough credibility test to determine whether it is enough to kick start the country's emergence from catastrophic economic collapse. President Robert Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai on Thursday agreed to share power in a pact ending a deep political crisis compounded by the veteran leader's disputed and unopposed re-election in June....

"The deal will only survive on a lot of goodwill, commitment and strategic thinking by all the key players because it can easily collapse even on small things and misunderstandings," he said( Eldred Masunungure, a political science professor at the University of Zimbabwe.)....

. Initially the MDC opposition will be anxious to ensure that it has its hands on some levers of power, and that Mugabe is not merely trying use it as cover to win back international approval and vital financial aid to rescue an economy mired in the world's worst inflation - over 11 million per cent.

Key foreign donors, who have promised a massive rescue package if democracy is restored, are likely to take a cautious approach. The European Union on Friday welcomed the deal as a step forward and said it was rethinking plans to extend sanctions against Mugabe's government. But it said it needed to see the detail before making a final decision, as did former colonial power Britain.

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