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Tsvangirai Wants to Engage Mugabe on Political Issues, Pension

Former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai addressing journalists in Harare Wednesday, September 18, 2013. - VOA
Former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai says he is ready to engage President Robert Mugabe on political issues affecting Zimbabwe and his pension.

Mr. Tsvangirai is quoted by the Zimbabwe Independent newspaper as saying any engagement with President Mugabe will be done for the benefit of Zimbabweans.

He is quoted as saying that he will also discuss his pension with the new government following the July 31st elections which were won resoundingly by Mr. Mugabe and his Zanu-PF party.

The former prime minister, who still insists that Zanu-PF rigged the polls, says he has not yet discussed possibilities of acquiring a multi-million dollar Harare mansion he occupied while he was in the unity government.

Efforts to contact his spokesman Luke Tamborinyoka were in vain as he was not answering his mobile phone.

Most Western nations say the elections were a big farce as the voters roll was in a shambles and thousands of people were turned away at polling stations.

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission has already said that nearly 305,000 voters were turned away on July 31st and that 207,000 voters were "assisted" to cast their ballots.

The MDC claimed soon after the polls that it found 838,000 entries on the voters roll with the same name, address and date of birth but different identity document numbers, 350,000 people who are more than 85 years old and 109,000 people aged over 100.

Reacting to Mr. Tsvangirai’s remarks on engaging President Mugabe, political analyst Nkululeko Sibanda of Huddersfield University in London told VOA Studio 7 that Tsvangirai will damage his reputation if he engages President Mugabe in any political platform.
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At the same time, indications are that former Movement for Democratic
Change ministers have not yet started negotiating for their pensions amid reports that the government has spent over $20 million purchasing new vehicles for cabinet members in the new Zanu-PF government.