Former South African president Thabo Mbeki was expected in Harare late Monday to launch an effort to save the power-sharing agreement he helped
to forge last month - but which to some seemed on the brink of collapse following President
Robert Mugabe's unilateral assignment of ministries to his ZANU-PF party and
the opposition Movement for Democratic Change.
MDC founder and prime minister-designate Morgan Tsvangirai on Sunday threatened to end talks if Mr. Mugabe did not reverse his action, taken late last week.
Instead, however, Mr. Mugabe swore in his two vice presidents
without prior consultation with the MDC leaders who are supposed to
be his partners in governing the country.
Meanwhile, though Mr. Mugabe's ZANU-PF indicated that
the ministry of finance was still up for discussion, the party's chief
parliamentary whip, Joram Gumbo, told reporter Blessing Zulu of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that the MDC is
too inexperienced to handle the portfolio.
Spokesman Nelson Chamisa of the
MDC formation headed by Tsvangirai rejected the proposition that the MDC could not handle the nation's finances.
Edwin Mushoriwa, spokesman for the MDC wing led by Arthur Mutambara, said Mr. Mugabe was insincere in declaring that only the
ministry of finance is still up for discussion.
Offering perspective, Cape Town-based political
analyst Brian Raftopoulos said Mr. Mugabe is taking advantage of Mr. Mbeki's recent ouster from the South African presidency.
More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe.