The unity government which the Southern African Development Community and the African Union has been urging was finally sworn in as the new government of Zimbabwe. Within an hour after placing his tough minded hard liners in positions to control the army and police, the Mugabe security forces arrested a chief aide of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai. Roy Bennett, a white farmer who fled Zimbabwe after his farm was taken and he got into an argument with the Minister of Justice, but was asked by Tsvangirai to assume the post of deputy agricultural minister. The arrest is sending a signal to all members of Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) that Mugabe is the real boss and he has the power including the power to arrest close associates of the new prime minister.
The concept of a unity government is an excellent idea but it requires both parties to cooperate and respect one another. Mugabe has no intention of respecting the rights of members of the MDC and the Bennett arrest is the first warning that the real boss remains the man who insists he is boss– Mugabe.