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2018 must, first and foremost, deliver free elections - forget ED's dogma saying otherwise

19 May 2018 at 18:22hrs | Views
"Mhembwe rudzi inozvara mwana eneruzhumu!" (Each individual buck species has its own distinct marking!) so goes the Shona adage. Ever since President Mnangagwa took over from Robert Mugabe he has certainly left a distinguishing mark, "ruzhumu", on Zanu PF and the way the party conducts itself.
 
President Mnangagwa and his junta believe "Everything is what THEY say they are because they said so!" It is the regime's dogma and they have followed it doggedly from day one. 

"Firstly, we wish to assure the nation that His Excellency, The President, of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Head of State and Government and Commander in Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, Cde R.G Mugabe and his family are safe and sound and their security is guaranteed. We are only targeting criminals around him who are committing crimes that are causing social and economic suffering in the country in order to bring them to justice. As soon as we have accomplished our mission we expect that the situation will return to normalcy," announced Major General Sibusiso Moyo in the small hours of the historic 15 November 2017. He was the spokesman of the coup plotters. He has since become Minister of Foreign Affairs in the post-coup junta government.
 
"To both our people and the world beyond our borders: We wish to make it abundantly clear that this is not a military takeover of Government. What the Zimbabwe Defence Forces is doing is to pacify a degenerating political, social and economic situation in our country which if not addressed may result in violent conflict," said Maj Gen Moyo.
 
One can only imagine the man-months the coup plotters must have spent before coming to the conclusion that this was not a military coup but a military assisted transition. To everyone else this was a coup in every sense of that word but to the coup plotters it was not a coup for the simple reason - THEY said so! They even got some judges to endorse their position - whether they did so out of selfish greed, at gun point or both, history will tell.
 
"Zimbabwe is open for business!" was the next chant by the regime. President Mnangagwa led from the front on this one and the rest took up the chant with the passion and zeal. In their colourful scarfs, they looked like a family of southern ground hornbill out to proclaim their ownership of every square inch of tuff their voices are heard.
 
Was Zimbabwe open for business? The answer was no, in November 2017 when President Mnangagwa first made the clarion call; the answer is still no today.
 
Whilst President Mnangagwa never uttered any of Mugabe's anti-western rhetoric and scrapped some of Mugabe's obnoxious laws like the Indigenisation Act; still this was not enough. Investors and international financial institutions had shied away from Zimbabwe because the country was seen as a pariah state ruled by corrupt, vote-rigging and ruthless thugs.
 
"It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation, and only one bad one to lose it," said Benjamin Franklin.

Of course, it was a nonsense to think that the simple act of removing Robert Mugabe as President was enough end Zimbabwe's pariah state status! By failing to implement the democratic reforms and thus do something concrete to end Zanu PF's reputation as a party of vote-rigging thugs; the regime has only confirmed that Zimbabwe is indeed still a pariah state.
 
So, "Zimbabwe is open for business!" has become just another Zanu PF dogma; it is so because the "hornbills" say so! Some Zimbabweans have joined the junta in their rancorous proclamation!
 
"The opposition had paddled the propaganda that Mnangagwa is the old wine in the new container. Looking at the short relay Zimbabwe ran from November 2017 when Mnangagwa was inaugurated to date a lot of things have taken place. The achievements which Mnangagwa has presided over are un-believable. The first thing he did he opened the country to business," wrote Dr Masimba Mavaza in Zimeye and Bulawayo 24.
 
"People across the political spectrum, believe that the ‘more of the same' narrative is too simplistic to capture what has really happened in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe is now alive with optimism about the prospects of badly needed economic reforms and re-engagement with western donors after elections that are expected to take place in July. …. And investors, already flocking to the country in search of opportunities at bargain prices, are keen to enter the market; the former enemies have turned into friends and are effectively seeking partnership with Zimbabwe in investing and moving the country upwards."
 
Dr Mavaza talks of investors "flocking" into the country and yet failed to name even one. He has swallowed the Zanu PF junta dogma; hook, line and sinker; investors are flocking into the country because the junta, spin-doctors, apologists, etc., etc. say so!
 
My fellow Zimbabweans; in the real world there are empirical laws, the laws of thermodynamics, which govern us all and everything. Those who have taken the trouble to understand these laws have lived and thrived and those who have not, who have chosen instead to follow some dogmatic nonsense, have suffered and died unnecessarily.
 
Zimbabwe is in this political mess; with an incompetent, corrupt and totally dysfunctional ruling party complete with an entourage of 129 equally corrupt and incompetent 129 opposition parties; Zanu PF has corrupted the country's state institutions to create this de facto one-party, Zanu PF, dictatorship which has ridden roughshod over our people's freedoms, human rights, hopes and dreams. 
 
By the same token; Zimbabwe is in this economic mess; with 90% out of work, ¾ of our people living on US$1.00 a day; because for the last 38 years the nation has been stuck with an incompetent and corrupt Zanu PF regime that systematically rigged elections to stay in power against the democratic wishes of a free people.
 
The linkage between economic prosperity and the people's political power to have a meaningful say in the governance of the country is not a figment of the imagination or is it theoretical it is real. Zimbabwe's economic mess is a result of mismanagement and corruption in the first instance, but these problems have remained from year to year for decades growing and spreading to the killer cancerous tumours they are today because Zanu PF would not do anything to end these problems and we, the people, had no political power to remove the regime from power.
 
It was not until the 1990s that many people finally acknowledge the link between the country's economic situation and the lack of a meaningful vote. When they did, the demand for democratic change grew louder and louder.
 
When Morgan Tsvangirai and his friends formed their political party in 1999, they called it the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), capturing the growing public cry for democratic change. Sadly, they had no clue what these changes should be or else they were too corrupt and incompetent to bring these changes about, as they showed during the GNU.
 
President Mnangagwa's claim that the November coup has satisfied the nation's desire for democratic change is even more outrageous than his "Zimbabwe is open for business!" hornbill call! He has stubbornly refused to implement any of the democratic reforms identified at the onset of the GNU as necessary to restore the people's freedoms and human rights.
 
He has promised free, fair and credible elections. And when he is told this is impossible with no free public media, no verified voters' roll, grossly unfair party funding in which Zanu PF has billions of dollars of looted national wealth to bankroll its vote-rigging schemes whilst the opposition are stone broke, etc.; he has ignored the protests.
 
We have a "new Zimbabwe" and a "new dispensation"; we are told and must believe it because the junta says so. The same thugs are ruling the country and they are, as we speak, carrying out their usual devilish schemes to rig the elections and we are instructed to ignore all that reality and go along with the junta dogma!
 
This year's elections are about democratic change, restoring the people's freedoms and human rights including the right to a meaningful say on who governs the nation, first and foremost. After 38 years of being stuck with a corrupt and tyrannical regime our first task is to ensure the carte blanche powers that allowed Zanu PF to rig elections are finally dismantled and we are free to remove whatever government emerge out of these elections like every other nation with a healthy and functioning democracy. 
 
"Zimbabweans from across the political divide - even long-time Zanu-PF antagonists – indicated their willingness to give the new president a chance to turn the country's economic fortunes around," Dr Mavaza claims.
 
This is just the usual dogmatic nonsense; if the junta is so cocksure of winning these elections then why has it refused to implement the reforms and guarantee the elections will be free, fair and credible! Zanu PF is rigging these elections and then claim it has the people's democratic mandate because the junta says so.
 
If President Mnangagwa cannot deliver free, fair and credible elections, it is clear this is a bridge too far for the seasoned thug; then he must step aside. These elections must and will be declared null and void to create spare for an interim administration that will tasked to implement the reforms and get this nation out of this quagmire of rigged elections it has been stuck in for the last 38 years.

These elections are first and foremost about restoring the people's freedoms and rights including the right to free and fair elections; we must reject all the Zanu PF junta dogma telling us democratic changes are not important because they say so!

All articles and letters published on Bulawayo24 have been independently written by members of Bulawayo24's community. The views of users published on Bulawayo24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Bulawayo24. Bulawayo24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

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