Gugulethu Moyo: Yes, Tsvangirai was right to pull out

Too many lives have been lost in run-up to election

Share
Related Topics

Morgan Tsvangirai's decision to pull out of the presidential run-off comes as no surprise.

At least 86 of his supporters have been killed and thousands have been beaten, driven from their homes or both. When more than a thousand of his polling agents were detained days before the election and armed Zanu-PF gangsters occupied and blocked access to the venue of his final rally yesterday, he decided to end the charade.

Mr Tsvangirai's impulse, which is to prevent further pointless bloodshed, especially of frontline electoral staff such as polling agents is understandable. After all, President Robert Mugabe has said he will not cede power to the MDC, even if by some miracle, the result shows that he has lost.

There is little evidence that Mr Mugabe's campaign to obliterate the MDC will end just because there is no election. Instead, Mr Mugabe is likely to seize the opportunity handed to him to kick out foreign election observers, who for the moment are the witnesses of the world on Mr Mugabe's crimes. When they leave, Mr Tsvangirai and his supporters will be in even greater danger.

Still, the problem of the dangerous regime in Harare is now for world leaders to solve, not for Mr Tsvangirai. For far too long, defenders of the ineffectual policies of Mr Mugabe's neighbours have argued they have been walking a fine line, trying to cajole the President, who only cares about staying in power, into cooperating. That hasn't worked, and more lives are lost every day. They now have an obligation to move swiftly and finally resolve the problem. To save lives.

For starters, the African Union should immediately deploy credible human rights monitors to Zimbabwe. These monitors should not be limited to the cities – they should also venture into rural areas, where murders, torture and rape are most prevalent.

In his cynical, bloody bid to cling on to power, Mr Mugabe, has bet on the unwillingness of regional and international institutions to take effective measures to stop his reign of terror. It is now time for world leaders to prove him wrong.

The author is a Zimbabwean lawyer and member of the International Bar Association.

React Now

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey/ South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Recruitment Consultant / Account Manager - Surrey / SW London

£40000 per annum + realistic targets: Ashdown Group: A thriving recruitment co...

Ashdown Group: Part-time Payroll Officer - Yorkshire - Professional Services

£25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful professional services firm is lo...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Nicola Sturgeon could have considerable influence over David Cameron in a hung parliament  

General Election 2015: What if Cameron were to end up in hock to the SNP?

Steve Richards
Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before