I will never work with Tsvangirai: Biti

via I will never work with Tsvangirai: Biti – DailyNews Live Mugove Tafirenyika • 18 February 2016

HARARE – Opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) president Tendai Biti has ruled out the possibility of reuniting with MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

This followed recent reports that Tsvangirai had sent emissaries to the former MDC secretary-general to initiate talks that could lead to the formation of a grand coalition of opposition parties ahead of the 2018 polls.

The development also comes at a time former vice president Joice Mujuru officially registered her Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) party and is reportedly keen on working with both Biti and Tsvangirai.

But in what could be a pointer to the mooted coalition suffering a stillbirth, Biti confirmed to the Daily News yesterday that while he was in talks with Mujuru, he would never countenance an alliance with the former prime minister.

“We differed in principles and values and now the situation has worsened, the chasm has widened, it has been exacerbated,” Biti said.

“It is about a fundamental of principle. We are in contact with genuinely progressive forces that are democratic, including People First.”

The former Finance minister said reports suggesting that there were talks going on between him and Tsvangirai were a media creation.

Tsvangirai’s spokesperson Luke Tamborinyoka said it was too early to talk about a coalition.

“We can talk about coalitions later. For now, we as political parties, are agreed on the need for electoral reforms, the need to have the Constitution operationalised, the need to end abuses, to pressure government to find (Itai) Dzamara among other things. Coalition is good in principle but we are still a long way from elections, so we cannot be putting the cart before the horse.”

ZPF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo said while his party was prepared to work with Tsvangirai and all opposition forces, the time was not yet ripe for coalition talks.

“We will cross the bridge when we get to it,” he said.

“At the moment, all parties are busy consolidating their structures and when the time comes, we will always find ways to find each other. We will work with all who believe that the task at hand is to remove this abusive and manipulative regime from power and that includes Tsvangirai. We will not choose who we work with as long as we share the same goals.”