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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Police to look into Tsvangirai's accident

It's never good to be a rumuor monger or to speculate. Let the police do their work. If you missed it, here is the news article according to The Guardian (UK)

Morgan Tsvangirai is expected to return to Zimbabwe today after undergoing medical tests in neighbouring Botswana following the car accident on Friday that killed his wife, Susan.

The prime minister, who was flown to Botswana on Saturday, was recovering physically but remained in a state of "enormous shock" after being told of his wife's death, said a spokesman for his party, the Movement for Democratic Change.

Condolences flooded in from MDC supporters and governments all over the world. The finance minister, Tendai Biti, said Mrs Tsvangirai, who had been married to the MDC leader for 31 years and was the mother of his six children, would be "irreplaceable".

The deputy prime minister, Thokozani Khuphe, is expected to handle day-to-day affairs until at least Wednesday when Mrs Tsvangirai will be buried in the couple's home town, Buhera.

She was fatally injured when the Toyota Land Cruiser the couple were travelling in overturned after it left the road about 50 miles south of Harare on Friday afternoon. The couple were on their way to a weekend rally in Buhera. Tsvangirai, who will be 57 tomorrow, had given his maiden speech in parliament two days earlier.

The speech outlined an ambitious programme of reconstruction for Zimbabwe, and the prime minister called for an end to the culture of "impunity and entitlement" among groups that wished his unity government to fail.

Yesterday, Biti stressed the government would continue its work. "This is a body blow to the party but in our history we have suffered many of them. We have learnt to take blows on the chin and move forward. We shall do that again. It is certainly what the prime minister wants."

Amid speculation that the car accident was an attempt on Tsvangirai's life, the MDC said it would carry out its own investigation in parallel with that of the police. Previously, there have been up to four attempts on Tsvangirai's life in the MDC's 10-year history.

Mr and Mrs Tsvangirai, as well as the prime minister's head of security, Benson Okolo, were in the middle car of a three-vehicle convoy when the crash happened on a two-way tar road about 20 miles south of Beatrice. Tsvangirai's driver, known as Simba, remains in hospital in Harare. Okolo was not seriously injured.

It is understood an oncoming single-cab lorry belonging to the John Snow International medical charity may have swerved into the path of the Land Cruiser, which may have taken abortive action or been shunted by the lorry.

Cattle farmer Deon Theron, who rushed to the scene on Friday afternoon, said the lorry may have swerved to avoid a "really bad, long bump" in the road. Theron said: "I climbed on top of the vehicle to examine its underside. Everything looked normal ... I checked the brake pipes and steering, and they were all fine."

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