ZIMBABWE'S 47 ambassadors will return home this year after completing their tours of duty amid indications that those posted from MDC formations will not be reappointed because their parties say they do not recognise the new Zanu-PF Government.
Ambassadors are appointed by the President to represent him by serving the country's interests in countries they are posted to.
President Mugabe and Zanu-PF got the mandate to form a new Government after resoundingly winning the July 31 harmonised elections, which the MDC formations claim were stolen.
Out of 47 diplomatic missions worldwide, MDC formations contributed five envoys during the tenure of the inclusive Government.
Foreign Affairs Deputy Minister Ambassador Christopher Mutsvangwa yesterday confirmed that diplomatic processes for the ambassadors to return home had started.
He said while the prerogative to recall or reappoint ambassadors lay with President Mugabe, it was highly unlikely that ambassadors from the MDC formations would be reassigned.
"I got a briefing from the Minister (Simbarashe Mumbengegwi) that the ambassadors are coming for a reshuffle while others will be given other portfolios," he said.
"Appointees from the then Prime Minister's Office are unlikely to be reappointed considering that their party does not recognise President Mugabe as the legitimate leader of the country.
"As you are aware, the ambassadors serve at the will of the President and will be his representative in the country they will be serving so it is up to President Mugabe to consider them fit or not for the reassignment."
MDC-T seconded four envoys -- Ambassadors Hebson Makuvise (Germany), Jacqueline Zwambila (Australia), Mabel Ngulani (Nigeria) and Hilda Mafudze (Sudan).
The Professor Welshman Ncube-led MDC formation has Ambassador Trudy Stevenson, who is stationed in Senegal.
Ambassador Mutsvangwa said the envoys are required to serve a maximum of four years.
"It is the standard worldwide that ambassadors, after a minimum of three years and at most four years come back home to be reassigned," he said.
"This coming back was long overdue for this crop of ambassadors as the existence of the inclusive Government arrested everything. Any changes would have become a bone of contention on who replaces who in that fractured arrangement."
He said the one-party Government existing would see Zimbabwe returning to 'normal.'
"What is being done now is reverting to the normal and there is nothing political about it," Ambassador Mutsvangwa said.
He said it was Government's expectation that the reassignment of the envoys would be completed early next year adding that their reappointment was not an overnight thing.
"If there are no budgetary constraints that will be done by March but the processes to achieve that have now started.
"It will take some time because it is a process that cannot happen overnight as there are diplomatic channels to follow.
"There are diplomatic formalities that need to be followed and the modalities of sorting the air tickets and the transfer of the ambassadors among other issues," he said.
One of the ambassadors, Ms Zwambila hit the headlines for the wrong reasons in 2010 when she was accused of stripping naked in front of three male embassy staff in Canberra.
She denied the allegations.
The ambassador was at it again in November that same year when she made astonishing claims--which are at variance with the State position and the reality on the ground--that there were no economic sanctions on Zimbabwe.
Earlier on, during the Zimbabwe Independence Day celebrations in Australia, Ms Zwambila ensured guests did not sing those verses in the national anthem that extol the liberation struggle.
As if that was not enough, the envoy last year came under fire for attending the Reunions of the Rhodesian Forces commemoration, an event which honours former Rhodesian soldiers.
Ms Zwambila attended the commemorations held at Capitol Hill after reportedly being invited by former Rhodesian soldiers who fled to Australia after independence in 1980.