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Misinformation: government detractors' new weapon

08 Mar 2020 at 09:05hrs | Views
THE most perceptive Zimbabweans must by now have taken note of an avalanche of media messages insinuating that the Second Republic might be short lived owing to a brewing coup.

As it turns out these are but ponderings of idle minds which are grasping at straws, with the hopes that the misinformation will be a fertile ground for change of Government. Talk of desperate need for reality check. Self-exiled former Cabinet Minister, Professor Jonathan Moyo, is one chief proponent of such rhetoric and considering revelations that he funded MDC 2018 election campaign, he has convinced that gullible party that his musings can become reality if repeated often enough.  

Moyo recently stuck his neck out predicting that the Government of His Excellency President Emmerson Mnangagwa would fall by February 2020. Well, it is now March and nothing of that sort has materialised, proving his alleged "sources" in the army are just a figment of his fervid imagination.

Propagandists the world over are known to sprinkle big fat lies with doses of truth to make them believable and Moyo has once again donned his hullabaloo hat trying to achieve the impossible. Yes, it is true that the economic downturn bedevilling the country has seen Zimbabweans, members of the armed forces included, facing hardships. However, that does not mean there is disgruntlement in the Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF).

To begin with ZDF members constitute a significant percentage of adult Zimbabweans who understand more than anyone else that the economic downturn bedevilling the country has been exacerbated by the illegal sanctions imposed on the country by The United States of America (USA).

Such an educated lot are well-versed with the underlining reasons Zimbabwe is where it is and would never, even for a second, think removing a President who is fighting to have the punitive measures removed would better Zimbabwe's situation. They understand that USA is the enemy and not President Mnangagwa.

Secondly, the Government of Zimbabwe has been spearheading numerous projects meant to cushion all civil servants, ZDF members included. These measures ensure that serving man and women have a peace of mind and give their all in defence of the motherland.

Another fib doing the rounds is that Army Generals, aware of the possibility of a military coup by middle and junior ranks, have resorted to piling pressure on President Mnangagwa to persuade him "to go peacefully or risk being removed violently". The problem with such rhetoric is that it disregards the fact that Army Generals serve at the pleasure of the President. So, is it feasible that the Generals would go and tell their boss that they have failed to maintain discipline in the military without risking being dismissed? Food for thought.

Closely related to the above are claims that President Mnangagwa has been warming to a deal of stepping down to avoid a coup since his chat with then Acting President, Vice-President Constantino Chiwenga, at his Pricabe Farm in Sherwood, Kwekwe in January. This is one of many stories being thrown around to create an impression that there in bad blood between the President and the VP. On the contrary, the two are long-time friends who spent that day chatting and touring the President's farm and fabrications of an estranged relationship is only being manufactured and propagated on social media and believing such fake news will not make it true.

Not to be outdone, the opposition MDC once sensationally claimed that it was working with some disgruntled Zanu-PF legislators to impeach President Mnangagwa over the alleged country's worsening economic environment and the alleged killings of innocent civilians by security forces. However, Zanu-PF dismissed the claims as "wishful thinking" on the part of the MDC to think that the country's main opposition could sway its legislators to turn against its leader, "no matter the circumstances".

To add to that, if the MDC was truly working with "disgruntled" Zanu-PF legislators, would they disclose such information before their intentions are fulfilled? Lastly, there are also claims that the other possibility which has been simmering in the body politic for some time now, is a popular revolution through which the people would take to the streets and demand change. Problem is — proponents of such musings have failed to make people go into the streets for the past 20 years and harping on about the issue won't make it a reality.

Deep down Zimbabweans understand that their Government is doing all is humanly possible to turn around the country's fortunes in the face of sanctions.  The President is on record warning citizens that austerity measures were not going to be a walk in the park but necessary for posterity. In a nutshell, when propaganda and "alternative facts" grip the world, the truth is dead! But for what reason — if one may ask?

The likes of Professor Moyo are spent political forces, who are aware that defeating Zanu-PF through the ballot is an insurmountable task as the revolutionary party still commands support and respect across the country, hence the need to insight people, hence the need to advocate for unconstitutional means of changing Government.  

Prof Moyo and company should stop cooking up fictitious coups in the comfort of their homes, which is all but a figment of their imagination. Zimbabwe continues being guarded by the constitution and the next elections are due 2023, where the ruling party is tipped for a routine win.

Source - sundaynews
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