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Tsvangirai: SADC Prevented Mugabe Disgraceful Exit

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai
Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai says the Southern African Development Community (SADC) influenced the formation of the unity government so that President Robert Mugabe may have a dignified exit in democratic polls.

Mr. Tsvangirai said this in Mashonaland Central Province where he addressed three election rallies Tuesday.

Addressing his supporters at Chipadze Stadium, Bindura, to wind-up Tuesday meetings with his followers, Mr. Tsvangirai said President Mugabe, who has ruled the country since independence in 1980, was saved the humiliation of leaving office in an undignified manner after losing the March 2008 elections.

Mr. Tsvangirai, who won the first round of voting, pulled out of the presidential run-off vote citing increasing violence targeting his supporters.

Despite difficulties faced by many people to register as voters, especially in urban areas, in an exercise that ended Tuesday midnight, Mr. Tsvangirai said he is confident of winning the hearts of Zimbabweans come July 31.

He encouraged his supporters not to be swayed by violence that he says may be introduced by Zanu PF ahead of the polls. Several of his supporters in Mashonaland Province were victimized in the run-up to the presidential run-off of June 2008.

Turning to issues that affect the lives of ordinary Zimbabweans, Mr. Tsvangirai said if elected into State House, his priority would be to reduce poverty amongst the country’s citizens.

For the country’s economy to grow, the prime minister said the rule of law has to be restored.

He claimed that Mr. Mugabe is clinging to power because the veteran leader departure will create a power vacuum in his fragmented Zanu PF party.

The Movement for Democratic Change founding leader, who also held other meetings with his supporters in Rushinga and Mt. Darwin on Tuesday, is expected to wind up his campaign in Mashonaland Central Province on Wednesday where he is expected to address rallies in Mvurwi and Glendale before taking his campaign trail to Mashonaland West Province on Thursday.