Harare (Zimbabwe), Sep 15: Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai on Monday signed a power-sharing deal that will end months of political crisis and violence after bitterly-disputed elections. Mugabe, 84, was greeted with some jeers as he entered the Rainbow Towers hotel in Harare for a ceremony, which was attended by several southern African leaders.
Tsvangirai was applauded by the audience, made up mostly of members of the opposition-dominated parliament. After signing the accord, the two men shook hands to general applause Mugabe keeping a straight face but Tsvangirai doing so with a beaming smile.
The leader of a splinter faction of the Movement for Democratic Change opposition, Arthur Mutambara, also signed the agreement.
Tsvangirai said the agreement provided the best hope for Zimbabwe and called on President Mugabe to work together to implement the deal.
Mugabe said he was committed to national unity and would do "his best".
The agreement was signed in front of some 3,000 invited guests in Harare''s International Conference Centre.
"I''ve signed this agreement because I believe it represents the best opportunity for us to build a peaceful and prosperous democratic Zimbabwe," said Tsvangirai
Under the terms of the agreement, Mugabe will continue as president while Tsvangirai will be the country''s prime minister.
Mugabe said there were 'lots of things' in the deal that neither leader liked but that they would work together to "find our way".
Under the deal, Mugabe will be the president, the commander-in-chief of the country''s armed forces, will chair meetings of the cabinet and his Zanu-PF will have 15 ministers in the cabinet.
Morgan Tsvangirai will be the Prime Minister, will chair meetings of the council of ministers, control the police force and his MDC party will have 16 ministers, three of whom will be from a smaller faction of the MDC
Tsvangirai said the agreement was a "product of painful compromises" and that it did not provide "an instant cure" to the fortunes of Zimbabwe.
Tsvangirai called for the support of the international community and African neighbours in helping to rebuild the country - healthcare, education and economy.
Deputy Prime Minister Mutambara, said the compromise agreement was a victory for Zimbabwe.
The deal opens the way for international donors to help to revive Zimbabwe''s economy, where inflation is at more than 11,000,000 percent.