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article imageMugabe Surrenders, Swears in Tsvangirai as Prime Minister

By Chris V. Thangham     Feb 16, 2009 in Politics
Zimbabwean President swore in opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai as Prime Minister in a coalition government. Mugabe delayed this ceremony for two months.
The power-sharing deal between Mugabe and Tsvangirai was announced two months ago, but instead Mugabe delayed it to have more control. Because of international pressure, runaway inflation and cholera epidemic, Mugabe had no other choice but to share powers with Tsvangirai, the opposition leader.
Two deputy Prime Ministers were also sworn in: Thokazani Khupe, deputy leader of Tsvangirai’s party Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) and Arthur Mutambara, the leader of the break-away faction of the MDC.
Tsvangirai won the elections last year but Mugabe called for a run-off, which Tsvangirai refused to run for fear of violence against his supporters. The two sides then finally agreed to form a unity government two months ago.
The new unity government now has to face a hyperinflation (231 million percent in July, 2008), a cholera epidemic that has taken 4,000 lives and a 90 percent unemployment rate.
MDC will control the Ministries of Health, Education and Finance and hopefully they will be able to turn it around with international help. Foreign nations will contribute more to Zimbabwe now that Tsvangirai is in power.
More about Mugabe, Tsvangirai, Prime minister
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