Zimbabwe ruling, opposition parties sign power-sharing deal

September 15th, 2008 - 5:09 pm ICT by IANS  

Harare, Sep 15 (Xinhua) Zimbabwe’s ruling party and the opposition formally signed here Monday a power-sharing deal which is aimed at solving the political and economic crisis in the country. The deal was signed by President Robert Mugabe who headed the ruling ZANU-PF party and opposition leaders in the Zimbabwean capital.

Mugabe and the main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) led by Morgan Tsvangirai reached the power-sharing deal last Thursday.

Under the deal, the new Zimbabwean cabinet will comprise 31 members, 16 of them drawn from the opposition.

The deal at the end of long-drawn on-again, off-again talks came after Mugabe issued an ultimatum earlier that he would go ahead unilaterally with naming cabinet ministers if Tsvangirai did not sign the power-sharing agreement by last Thursday.

Zimbabwe held presidential and parliamentary elections on March 29, in which presidential candidate Tsvangirai received a leading number of votes but failed to win outright.

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