By Mthulisi Mathuthu:
Reports this week said the former premier remains at the Highlands house purchased for him by the state, while Macheka is now living at the couple’s Borrowdale house in Harare.
The couple’s marital problems have been a subject of speculation since immediately after the July 31st election last year.
At one time Macheka was said to have resumed her romance with former lover Kennedy Ngirazi with the state media publishing purported email exchanges between the two.
A Herald report on New Year’s Day quoted Tsvangirai admitting to ‘problems’ in his marriage but he refused to shed more light.
According to the Herald, after Tsvangirai’s wife did not answer his call he sent a driver for her to share in the same interview with the paper, but she declined.
Macheka later told the Herald that she was not willing to discuss the issue in the media but implied that Tsvangirai as a ‘public figure’ is the one who stands to be ‘damaged’ by the report.
Tsvangirai, who according to the report looked dejected throughout the interview, allayed fears of a divorce adding that he was still married to Macheka. He emphasized his commitment and said that they would discuss their problems as adults.
In 2012 Tsvangirai had another stormy relationship with Lorcadia Karimatsenga which had a costly end as he was forced to pay about $ 200 000 to leave her to wed Macheka.
In both relationships the state secret services are rumored to have been the source of problems with the aim of tarnishing Tsvangirai’s image and diminish his stature on behalf of his rival President Robert Mugabe.
Of late Mugabe has been publicly condemning what he says is promiscuity within the MDC leadership lending credence to beliefs that the intelligence services have a hand in Tsvangirai’s marital woes.
The beliefs are further compounded by both Karimatsenga and Macheka’s strong family links to the ruling ZANU PF party.
Political analyst Itai Dzamara told SW Radio Africa that while the public was ‘bound to be concerned’ about Tsvangirai’s public image there was also ‘widespread sympathy’ for him.
Dzamara said many people believed that there was ‘a hidden hand’ behind Tsvangirai’s problems. He said Mugabe’s persistence on what he terms infidelity within the MDC was an indicator that he had an interest in Tsvangirai’s his marital woes.