MDC founding president Morgan Tsvangirai launched a scathing attack on his main rival in Wednseday’s election, President Robert Mugabe, calling him a puppet of the military that he says is in control of the country.
President Mugabe regularly calls Tsvangirai a puppet of the West saying his MDC party was sponsored by western nations, chief among them Britain and the United States, seeking to topple him following his controversial land reforms.
Addressing thousands of supporters at Chibuku Stadium in Harare's satellite town of Chitungwiza Sunday, Tsvangirai said his partner in the coalition government for the past four years was not in charge of the country.
“Mugabe himself knows that he’s not his man. He’s a beholden. He’s a puppet of the military,” said Tsvangirai. “Now we have a challenge of the military that says it does not want Mai Mujuru to take over because she’s a woman and they do not want Tsvangirai to rule either. But we want to tell them that the will of the people will prevail.”
Tsvangirai also told a rally in Chegutu Saturday that the military had stopped President Mugabe from relinquishing power in 2008 when he lost to the premier in the first round of voting.
Mugabe now wants to retire, Tsvangirai said, adding the veteran Zanu PF leader is now an appendage of the military.
“We are two days left before achieving real change” said Tsvangirai thousands of ululating supporters.
Meanwhile, Tsvangirai said he’s aware the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission is planning to move ballot papers to a central place after voting before counting is done in violation of the Electoral Act.
He also criticized Sunday’s arrest of his party's deputy national chairman Morgan Komichi. The deputy transport minister was arrested over a ballot paper used in the early or special vote for members of the uniformed forces.
Tsvangirai warned that all those who looted the country's resources, especially diamonds, will face the full wrath of the law if he is elected into office in Wednesday's watershed elections.
"Zanu PF has all along condoned corruption within its rank and file, but we in the MDC have a Zero tolerance on corruption. We fired all corrupt councillors of Chitungwiza but who retained them? It was Chombo of Zanu PF,” he said.
Tsvangirai met election observers to brief them on what he said were problems affecting Wednesday's election, chief among them, his failure to access the voters roll ahead of the polls, the independence of the electoral commission and cases of violence being reported in some parts of the country.
The prime minister addresses his final campaign rally dubbed "The cross over" at open grounds near the Harare International Conference Center Monday. The MDC-T has named the grounds the Freedom Square.