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Was Nelson Chamisa right after all?

09 Dec 2018 at 21:20hrs | Views
I liked Emmerson Mnangagwa and I cheered him on in-person and through my writings but today I am write in utter despair at what my hero has turned out to be. Could there be some element of truth to Chamisa's allegation that ED did not win the elections?

If ED won the elections, why is he in constant need of supporters, seeking support for 2023 plebiscite before he has concluded his first year in office? Why is ED acquiring support by dispensing patronage (state of the art range rovers for the cabinet) and appealing to "tribal solidarity" from Karanga and Ndebeles? Have you observed how ED is assigning positions in key state institutions and parastatals?

It does not take a rocket scientist to see that appointments into ED's government are based on allegiance to the president, ethnicity, and sycophancy. Professionalism and efficiency has quickly vanished from parastatals, the civil service, the judiciary, the parliament, and the police. Zero productivity, ineptitude, and venality pervade these institutions. The rot has spread into all areas of government. Honestly, can anyone name the minister of Public Service without googling them? Parliament has become a joke. Security forces protect the president and his confidants, not the people.

The introduction of a 2 percent taxation has failed to generate economic growth or deliver basic social services. The performance of state-owned enterprises(SOE) is worse than scandalous. In fact, SOEs do face zero market discipline. They are overstaffed with party functionaries and rack up losses upon losses, which are covered with budgetary subventions, and they are riddled with gross inefficiency, waste, graft, and incompetence.

ED has been sending mixed messages of trying to turn parastatals into privately owned businesses, yet he seeks to create more of these state-controlled albatrosses. Why did ED visit the Reserve Bank before he left for the UN General Assembly? Can you imagine an American President at the Federal Reserve Bank? Are we faced with an imminent threat of nationalization of the entire private banking system in the country?

I had high hopes in ED; that he will create an environment friendly to private sector for the delivery of safe, clean drinking water, electricity, and sanitation, and many market products. From experience, I know the state cannot provide even the most basic services, so I had pinned my hopes on ED creating a friendly private sector environment.

And yet here we are. Despite steep hikes in taxes and import duties, government revenues still cannot cover expenditures—all we see—state of the art cars keep on arriving for the big cats. And the next move will be to order the central bank to cover the deficits by printing new currency, fueling inflation, or changing the currency altogether, thereby robbing people of their life savings. I am truly disgusted at the pious utterances of the ruling elites regarding probity, accountability, unity, hard work, and sacrifice—this is insouciant hypocrisy.

To me, the presidency (except Chiwenga), the parliament, the party, the judiciary, the bank have lost whatever public esteem I had accorded them. Vice President Chiwenga clearly said let us focus on the economy when he was at the Murombedzi rally. I had faint hopes but alas, two weeks later, the media is obsessed with, "ED for 2023, Ed chete chete"

Our bureaucratic institutions have become useless, ineffective and have lost all their technical rationality. No one dares to move an inch because the president keeps his vision close to his heart. If you are found on the wrong side of his vision, you are toast, possible jail term waiting for you. Those deposed are replaced by incompetent, well-connected sycophants. Any competent and honest civil servants who are still holding on to their jobs are demoralized by the corruption, fraud and theft of public property. Honestly, no one can tell me that those fat cats aligned to ED did not participate in graft during Bob's time. How is it that only G40 aligned politicians are facing graft charges?

If ED truly won the elections, why is he finding it hard to control the indiscipline and lassitude that is paralyzing the bureaucratic apparatus? Why are we experiencing a deterioration in administrative capability? Why are the institutionalized bureaucratic norms and practices being flouted? We here all talk about Zimbabwe Open for Business, One Stop Shop for easy of doing business yet simple routine tasks that would normally require a day's work by a civil servant take weeks—if they are ever accomplished. ED touted his Dashboards that gives him insights into operational data about government ministries; where did that go?

Accounting controls are nonexistent, and two departments within the same government ministry do not even know what the other one is doing. The capacity to execute plans, to implement reform, or even to manage the budget collapses. Is there any question as to why the economy is suffering? All the mega deals that made headlines, where did they go? Each rally preceding the election had a promise to open a business in each province (cold storage in Masvingo) that will create thousands of jobs, in which province has this come to be fruition.

Is there need for me to keep on going—NO! My humble message to the people of Zimbabwe is for us to come together for Zimbabwe not for politicians. There are people who were born and died without even ever tasted the freedom of having a job and living independently and enjoying life. Millions of us will go down that road if we continue to stand on the sidelines and allow ourselves to be divided by these selfish politicians. Mnangagwa, Chamisa and all the 100 + politicians who participated in the last elections do not have us at heart; they have no solutions for us; it is only us, the Zimbabwean people who can come together and determine our future.

Let us copy the good things from other countries like America, people do not care who wins the elections—who could imagine Trump as US president? Americans work with anyone who wins but if that president goes sideways, the American people do not shy away from putting the president back in line and on his rightful place. I urge all of us to really think about ourselves and refuse this continued abuse where our government is on a 2023 campaign before even half a year has passed. This we cannot afford!

Source - Wezhira Sam
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