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Can Ramaphosa force Mnangagwa to step down; that is all that real matter?

10 Aug 2020 at 15:39hrs | Views
In life, one must always make a honest assessment of what one can and cannot do. And proceed accordingly. There is logic in doing otherwise especial when that means repeating the same foolish mistake over and over again!

President Cyril Ramaphosa and his team should have sat down and asked themselves what is it exactly is the problem in Zimbabwe and the honest answer is the country's failure to hold free, fair and credible elections. And the solution is to get the country to implement democratic reforms to stop this curse of rigged elections.

This is old ground, SADC leaders made the same assessment following the 2008 elections and came to the same conclusion. The 2008 to 2013 GNU was tasked to implement the reforms. Sadly, not even one reform saw the light of day; the GNU failed to implement even one token reform in five years! Not one!

It is clearly naive to expect the same Zanu PF and MDC players involved in the 2008 GNU to implement the reforms even if they were given another chance to go so. The more rational course of action is to appoint body, in which both Zanu PF and MDC play no role, to implement the reforms.

The challenge is not can we find competent individuals to implement the democratic reforms; of course, we can. The real challenge is whether we can get Zanu PF to step down to allow the reforms to be implemented - knowing fully well this will mark the end of the regime's strangle hold on power for not just the duration of the interim period but forever.

Since SADC and President Ramaphosa endorsed Mnangagwa and Zanu PF as legitimate following the July 2018 elections, the regional body has no political leverage to force Zanu PF to step down and relinquish power. With no meaningful political leverage, SADC and President Ramaphosa will never get Mnangagwa to step down and so there is really no point in him sending his envoys. None!

Zimbabwe is in exactly the same situation that Lebanon is in:

both countries are in a serious economic and political mess after decades of gross mismanagement, rampant corruption and rank lawlessness

both are stuck with a rotten political system designed to keep the ruling elite in power whilst denying the impoverish majority a meaningful say in the governance of the country.

both need a complete overhaul of the political system a task that cannot be entrusted to the ruling elite as much as they would insist they are the only ones who can do it. The ruling elite will never ever reform themselves out of power.

However, in Lebanon there is international consensus agreeing with the ordinary Lebanese on the need for an independent body to overhaul the country's political system. In Zimbabwe our problem is being compounded by regional leaders who do not have the common sense to see and acknowledge their own serious limitation and thus avoid repeating yesteryear's same foolish mistakes.

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