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Ear to the Ground

A New Day in Zimbabwe

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Posted on Feb 11, 2009
Oath!
guardian.co.uk

Morgan Tsvangirai, left, is sworn in as Zimbabwe’s new prime minister by his bitter rival Robert Mugabe on Wednesday.

With a dearth of smiles in Zimbabwe on Wednesday, Morgan Tsvangirai was sworn in as prime minister by his political nemesis president Robert Mugabe. The long fight to this moment, which included Tsvangirai’s exile and the death of many of his political supporters, has culminated in a power-sharing agreement between the two men and their parties.

The Guardian:

Morgan Tsvangirai was sworn in as Zimbabwe’s new prime minister today, but was prevented from addressing the nation on television in a sign of the power struggles likely to come in the powersharing government with the president, Robert Mugabe.

Mugabe administered the oath of office to his bitter rival just a few months after saying he would never talk to the leader of the Movement for Democratic Change, let alone share power with him.

Tsvangirai stepped up to the podium and shook Mugabe’s hand. The new prime minister raised his right hand and promised to be faithful to Zimbabwe, observe its laws and serve it well. The rival leaders signed papers and shook hands again. There were no smiles.

Under the coalition agreement, Mugabe remains president with Tsvangirai overseeing the daily administration of government as prime minister. Cabinet seats are almost equally divided, with a small breakaway MDC faction also represented.

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