When truth takes a holiday.

Author:Ankomah, Baffour
Position:ZIMBABWE: Sponsored supplement - Movement for Democratic Change

Since 11 March when some Zimbabwean opposition leaders, including Morgan Tsvangirai (leader of one of the two factions of the country's main opposition Movement for Democratic Change--MDC--party), were assaulted by the police, Western media reporting of the country and pronouncements by Western governments have been so shrill that the truth has been lost in the thick envelope of hype.

In the process, despite oft-repeated claims by the Western media of objectivity and balance, the Zimbabwean government's side of the story has been buried, caricatured, or, at best, ignored.

It is in this context that I went looking for the truth in Zimbabwe. And how better to find it than allowing the key figures in the country to speak for themselves. On the following 70 pages, we have Morgan Tsvangirai giving his version of what led to the police assault on him and other party leaders; George Charamba, a government spokesman, putting the government's side of the story; Godwin T. Matanga, deputy commissioner for police, telling the police's side of the story; and a BBC anonymous eyewitness from the MDC side confirming that they fought with the police on 11 March. We also have Prof Arthur Mumtabara, leader of the other faction of the MDC, giving his reactions to the decisions of the SADC summit in Tanzania.

Also on the menu is an eye-opening analysis by David Coltart, the MDC's white member of parliament, telling how violence is endemic in Tsvangirai's faction of the MDC; Trudy Stevenson, another MDC member of parliament, describing how it feels to be on the wrong side of the MDC leadership; the MDC on MDC--quotable quotes by MDC stalwarts talking about MDC violence that the Western media refuses to report; and Welshman Ncube...

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