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Link: Tsvangirai becomes Zimbabwe's PM

It has been a long road for newly appointed Zimbabwean Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai. He has been beaten, charged with treason and denied power after his party, the Movement for Democratic Change, clearly won the election a year ago.

Many of us never thought we'd see this happen in our lifetimes but a government of national unity has been formed in Zimbabwe and Morgan Tsvangirai has been sworn in as prime minister in a power sharing scheme.

Tsvangirai is now chairman of the Council of Ministers and his first action today was to appoint a new finance minister, Tendai Biti.  All cabinet ministers are members of the Council.

As president, Robert Mugabe retains control of the National Security Council which includes the security services chiefs and Morgan Tsvangirai himself.  Negotiations had almost failed because the MDC had accused the leading party, Zanu-PF, of attempting to keep control of the most powerful ministries in the government, particularly the ministry in control of the police service.

Mugabe is chairman and Tsvangirai deputy chairman of the Cabinet now.  The cabinet is comprised of 15 Zanu-PF members and 16 MDC members of which 3 members belong to the Mutambara faction of the MDC

South Africa has been quick to call for targeted sanctions to be lifted saying that this is required for the success of the government of national unity.  The EU, Australia and New Zealand are hesitant though and are advising caution before sanctions are lifted.  In short, they want to see progress and action first.

Some of the issues that are vitally important at this time are the release of political prisoners and taking urgent action on the cholera breakout (denying there is a cholera problem doesn't count, Bob).

Tsvangirai being sworn in as prime minister
Morgan Tsvangirai being sworn in as Prime Minister of Zimbabwe

About Mandy Southgate

Mandy Southgate is an accountant living and working in London. She is passionate about world events such as genocide and apartheid and has a desire to understand how these events continue to occur in the modern world. With a focus on the 20th and 21st centuries, A Passion to Understand reflects her continuing research and reading on these topics.
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