The power-sharing deal this week between Zimbabwe’s main political rivals vindicates South African President Thabo Mbeki who was criticised for his “quiet diplomacy,” a state daily said Saturday.

“It is providential that today, President Mbeki stands vindicated and all those who opposed and badmouthed him over Zimbabwe should hang their heads in shame,” The Herald newspaper said in an editorial.

“The power-sharing deal he brokered between ZANU-PF and the MDC is as much a personal tribute as it is a triumph for Zimbabwe, Africa and the entire developing world,” it said, referring to the agreement between the party of President Robert Mugabe and the Movement for Democratic Change of opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

Mbeki was tasked by the Southern African Development Community (SADC) with mediating talks between Zimbabwe’s three main political rivals aimed at resolving a long-simmering political crisis.

On Thursday Mugabe, Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara who heads an MDC splinter faction endorsed an agreement to forge an all-inclusive government.

They are to officially sign the deal Monday at a ceremony in Harare to be attended by regional leaders.

Mbeki came under attack mostly from western countries for what they termed his “quiet diplomacy,” in refusing to openly criticise Mugabe for his policies.