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Will Zimbabwe national army allow a civilian rule

19 Feb 2021 at 09:59hrs | Views
Zanu PF without the army is like a shell.
Our government institutions are heavily militarised from Zimbabwe Electoral Commission which runs elections, government schools, hospitals, universities and district offices.

To cement the grip on state institutions, most intelligent officers are deployed in such areas to sniff out and monitor any malcontents and reporting on those meant to go against state governance policies.

The military in Zimbabwe drives the state machinery as compared to many other democracies around the globe who indirectly participate in running of government affairs and institutions.

We know the biggest democracies such as the USA also have military people in their government but the major difference with Zimbabwe is that in America civilians are also part and parcel of state pillars of democracy and their institutions are marinated by both professionals and fused with a few military touch personnel.

Soldiers pledge their allegiance to the country first rather than to the party which is different in Zimbabwe where allegiance seems to be to be directed to the party first and hence there does not appear to be any difference from the party Zanu PF and the state.

Zimbabwe is a heavily militarised state and only those politically connected to the military will always get the first preference when it comes to doing business with the state.

This is the deterrent reason which is stopping Zimbabwe from attracting investment because for one to do business of course one must first go through the grill.

Is the military ready to give power to the civilians and concentrate on the barracks and defence of the national interests of the country in the event that the opposition wins? This is a million dollar question which needs thinking outside the box.

I vividly recall in 2008 before the harmonised elections when I attended a certain Zanu PF rally in a Harare suburb. The late Robert Mugabe declared that his party was not going to be overthrown by a pen and a paper meaning that in real essence, voting overwhelming against the party was not going to guarantee a victory for the opposition. During that time every police station around Zimbabwe was manned or led by a war veteran or one with war credentials.

One can easily read from the usual Zanu PF script where sometime last year Patrick Chinamasa also declared that the 2023 election is dusted and done yet we were three years away from the harmonised elections. The question which people should ask must be - Where does Zanu PF get all this confidence from?

This week during a politburo meeting President Emmerson Mnangagwa also predicted a victory and that his party was geared to sweeping all urban seats.

The only internal change which was driven by factional fights between the G40 and Team Lacoste was in November 2017 coup which removed Mugabe and his sympathisers. This did not benefit the whole country but only a few individuals and political mongers who wanted to enjoy the gravy train.

This was an indicator that a Zanu PF internal election failed to remove him and then resorted to the army.

What is the position of the opposition in such a very crude environment? Is the opposition waiting for another sham election in 2023 which the army has a grip on?

What can be done to effect that much needed change in the country? Has our democracy come of age that we can easily surrender or give power to the winner? Only time shall tell as we are closely approaching the 2023 plebscite.

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Twitter- @Leokoni
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Source - Leonard Koni
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