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Zimbabwe is not a banana republic

18 Aug 2019 at 09:30hrs | Views
Blessed Sunday good people.

How was Friday?

Has the Government changed yet?

Is Nelson Chamisa now president of our teapot-shaped republic? Kikikiki.

Yes, exactly as Bishop Lazi called it last week: all pop, no corn; all sizzle but no steak; all foam, no beer; all bark but no bite; and all machismo but no macho.

Don't be fooled, the streets were never, are never and will never be an arbiter of local politics.

They weren't, wouldn't and can't.

What was elusive in the ballot cannot be captured on the streets.

Friday's planned demonstrations failed a long time ago; in fact, long before they were planned.

What we were meant to see last week was a doughy expression of what ought to have been a violent uprising tentatively scheduled for June under the guise of a reaction to a precipitously worsening economy.

Initially, MDC functionaries camouflaged as ordinary and concerned citizens, working together with some overreaching non-governmental organisations, were supposed to ignite the spark, which was envisaged to spawn a supposedly inexorable people's revolution that would have upended the current Government.

This is why they eventually made last-minute exhortations to their supporters not to wear their party regalia - to mask their deeds as the people's deeds.

How puerile.

To imagine such a denouement, one has to have a fertile imagination, and some people really do have a fertile imagination.

But obviously alert security forces blunted such an effort, which was as fanciful as it was superfluous.

Subsequent efforts to goad people onto the streets came to naught.

But the hawks that now surround the young Nelson Chamisa, who are distinguished by their dubious distinction of failing to outgrow the blaster of student politics, wanted action yesterday.

For them, the time is now. Or is it?

What they initially conceived as a people's revolution has evolved into a parochial political agenda, which contextually doesn't have any meaningful political currency, especially after their electoral defeat last year.

Often the Bishop is accused of driving an unyieldingly anti-MDC agenda.

But let me address this issue once and for all: No! Bishop Lazi doesn't have anything against the MDC, and, yes, he definitely hates the MDC's meddlesome friends.

Yes, those long-eared and long-nosed pale folks who think the black man is fated to forever fail in all his pursuits, and therefore will always need to be hand-held and shepherded by their supreme selves. Argh!

And what was with the frenetic and exasperating tweeting from the US embassy, which was meant to form the backdrop - if not drum roll - to the protests.

There is always a third hand in Zimbabwe's politics.

The real war, they often say, is fought in the shadows.

However, it is perfectly understandable why the MDC is now fretting, especially with Mthuli having successfully moored the economy against incredible odds.

The Zimbabwe dollar has seemingly found its footing and the power supply situation has commendably improved, and with it the heretofore dim - literally - prospects for industry.

In a season that has been buffeted by probably the worst drought in the past four decades and a weather-related calamity described as the worst to ever plague the Southern Hemisphere, the situation could have been horribly dire?

But from a deep fount of the surplus, made possible by a strict regimen of generating more revenues than Government is spending, Mthuli has managed to get the US$10 million for power, $694 million to import grain and more to support the vulnerable, including, most surprisingly, ensuring that roads and dams continue to be built.

And to do all this without borrowing a single dime is outstanding, if not incredible.

Dear reader, if you are at sea as to what is happening in the economy, listen, watch and learn over the next six months as decisive action is taken to deal with market aberrations that have affected us ever since the bearer cheques were introduced in 2003.

Those who are currently building their economic fortunes on arbitrage opportunities presented by cash shortages, be forewarned: your day of reckoning in nigh.

Bankruptcy

Bishop Lazi told you last week about the doomed demonstrations.

As ED sits comfortably in office, now as chair of a regional organ whose remit is to ensure peace and stability, he continues with his agenda, while a hapless Chamisa sits in the poignantly rickety and decrepit Harvest House scheming the next futile move.

What he doesn't realise is that with every failure, his mojo wanes and the vultures that surround him, most of whom claim to have an attentive ear in the West, boldly circle around him.

The hawks are driving him to the edge of the cliff, from where he is likely to perilously fall, Humpty Dumpy like, depending on his next move.

He has to quickly realise that sovereign nations are maintained and secured by a redoubtable security bulwark, which cannot be breached, least of all by street urchins that think they can arbitrate local politics through the streets.

The State has many lives.

It is like a Leviathan.

For pastor Chamisa, Bishop Lazi would recommend Job 41: 1-34.

It reads in part: "Can you pull in Leviathan with a fish hook or tie down its tongue with a rope? Can you put a cord through its nose or pierce its jaw with a hook?

"Will it keep begging you for mercy? Will it speak to you with gentle words?

"Will it make an agreement with you for you to take it as your slave for life? Can you make a pet of it like a bird or put it on a leash for the young women in your house?

"Will traders barter for it? Will they divide it up among the merchants?

"Can you fill its hide with harpoons or its head with fishing spears?

"If you lay a hand on it, you will remember the struggle and never do it again!

"Any hope of subduing it is false; the mere sight of it is overpowering.

"No one is fierce enough to rouse it. Who then is able to stand against me?"

Food for thought.

But the problems for young Chamisa run deep.

Despite being out-balloted last year, he continues to be out-thought, outflanked and out-turfed.

Not only is the party that he presides financially bankrupt - fatigued erstwhile generous donors, who are facing a myriad of challenges in their own Western capitals, are now demanding results - but it is ideologically bankrupt as well.

What does the MDC stand for now in contemporary politics?

Politically, Zanu-PF now seems to occupy both the left, centre and the centre-left, which has an intimate connection with ordinary people, while MDC non-descriptively is on the centre-left moving to the right.

This is why we have an MDC legislator who doesn't find the irony of casting aspersions on rural folk who are learning how to bake their own bread using wooden ovens but would happily gorge pizza prepared in the same wooden ovens at exclusive eateries.

And surely, you cannot push for a return of the encumbering US dollar and lurch on the expired Zanu-PF-must-go refrain as a viable manifesto.

But this is currently the situation we find ourselves in.

The Bulldozer

But perhaps even more ominous for the MDC, especially after Friday's stillborn charade, are the regional dynamics.

As Bishop Lazi types this, Tanzanian President Dr John Magufuli and ED are presently assuming the chair of powerful organs meant to guarantee peace and stability in a region that has remained relatively peaceful.

If Friday's foiled stunt, which was fortuitously choreographed for the Sadc Summit in Dar es Salaam, was meant to embarrass or capture the attention of Sadc, then the MDC is ill-advised.

Magufuli, who is known as the Bulldozer, doesn't suffer fools, nor does he mollycoddle spoiled political brats.

He is fiercely resolute and decisive for a short man.

But he, like ED, knows full well the poisonous designs of the West.

Ever since his anti-corruption crusade exposed avaricious multinational companies that were salting and secreting away Tanzania's mineral wealth, particularly gold, he has been in the cross hairs of the West.

Through overreaching sponsored media, which masquerade as reputable international media, and a phalanx of meddling NGOs, Magufuli's name is being dragged in the mud.

President Lungu is suffering the same fate in Zambia after crossing swords with Vedanta, a copper-mining giant.

ED knows this too well.

Did you see the international news headlines this past week from supposed media gurus such as The Financial Times, which were determinedly chipping away at his image for the ongoing reforms, albeit supported by their favoured IMF.

And all these negative headlines before Friday's demonstrations?

But it will fizzle out as it always does.

It couldn't have been a coincidence, unless, of course, if you believe in coincidences.

You have to read "Two Weeks in November" by Douglas Rogers to understand how this media underworld - closely connected to the MDC - operates, mafia-like, to assassinate the character of African leaders and besmirch State institutions.

But nothing will turn on this.

There is a saying in our culture: "nhamo inhamo hayo asi amai havaroodzwe", which in English means no matter how challenging the circumstances and how grinding the poverty, you cannot marry off your own mother for relief.

In any case, states have inherent capacities to deal with both contemporary internal and external threats, however they mutate and present themselves.

And of course, Zimbabwe is not a banana republic.

So, the MDC will definitely need strong legs.

If they want to continue taking selfies in Africa Unity Square in the name of "Government-changing protests", as the thoroughly naive and myopic Mduduzi Mathuthu - Jonathan Moyo's certified acolyte - would want to call it, they might as well knock themselves out.

2023 is a long way out: the more we reach toward it, the more the reforms take effect, the weaker the MDC becomes.

Bishop will always tell it like it is, however unpalatable it might be.

Bishop out!

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