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'Zanu PF has dismembered MDC A, will not need to rig to win 2023' - only counter, demand reforms before 2023

10 Apr 2021 at 05:44hrs | Views
Dear Tony Reeler,

Thank you very much for your thought-provoking article 'Zanu PF won't concede electoral defeat' in New Zimbabwe and Bulawayo24. The root cause of Zimbabwe economic meltdown and political paralysis - we are stuck with a corrupt, incompetent and tyrannical ruling party and an equally corrupt, incompetent and utterly useless opposition - is the country's failure to remove Zanu PF from office. You have never given up hope of finding a solution to end the de facto one-party dictatorship.

On behalf of the millions of ordinary Zimbabweans, the victims of the economic ruins and tyrannical oppression, thank you for never giving up the fight for a just, free and democratic Zimbabwe.

"Zanu PF cannot afford to lose political power for two reasons; It fears being held accountable for all the gross human rights violations committed over the past 40 years. It fears accountability for the massive corruption that has increased under the new dispensation," you wrote.

"The first strategy of the ruling party is, therefore, to continue to dismember all opposition forces, political and civic, to ensure that it will be the only major political force able to contest an election in 2023.

"The recall of all the genuinely elected MPs of the MDC Alliance (most recently Tendai Biti) and their replacement by unelected appointees of minority proxy political parties, is central to this strategy.

"Through the demolition of the MDC Alliance cutting it off from financial support and creating multiple contestants for its political base Zanu PF has a forlorn hope that it will need neither coercion nor rigging to win the election in 2023."

Chamisa's seizure of MDC-T leadership after Morgan Tsvangirai's death was unconstitutional and Biti failed to handle the transition of PDP to MDC A. The two gentlemen shot themselves in the foot big time and not for the first time, one might add.   

Mnangagwa's "Zimbabwe is open for business!" initiative is dead in the water, he has failed to stamp out corruption and mismanagement and has long run out of ideas what else to do to revive the comatose economy. Going into the 2023 elections with the economy is such a sorry state was Mnangagwa's worst nightmare.

MDC A's implosion is therefore a God-send life-line as far as Mnangagwa is concerned. To blame him for MDC A's implosion is not only give him undue credit but, most important of all, is to fail to identify the real culprits - the MDC A leaders themselves. As stated above, Nelson Chamisa and Tendai Biti shot themselves in the foot and this is not the first time they have done this.

Zimbabwe had its greatest opportunity ever to implement the democratic reforms and dismantle the de facto one-party dictatorship once and once for all during the 2008 to 2013 GNU. Nelson Chamisa and Tendai Biti were MDC-T ministers in the GNU and it was incumbent on them and their colleagues in the MDC-Ncube faction to implement the democratic reforms. They failed to implement even one reform in five years!

Ever since the GNU debacle, MDC leaders have participating in elections, knowing fully well that, with no reforms implemented, Zanu PF will rig the elections. They participated, regardless of the rigging, out of greed. They have known all along that by participating they will be giving the flawed process "credibility", as David Coltart, MDC A Treasurer General (MDC-Ncube minister of education in the GNU) readily admitted.

"The worst aspect for me about the failure to agree a coalition was that both MDCs couldn't now do the obvious - withdraw from the (2013) elections," wrote Coltart in his book The Struggle Continues 50 years of Tyranny in Zimbabwe.

"The electoral process was so flawed, so illegal, that the only logical step was to withdraw, which would compel SADC to hold Zanu PF to account. But such was the distrust between the MDC-T and MDC-N that neither could withdraw for fear that the other would remain in the elections, winning seats and giving the process credibility."

By participating in the flawed and illegal elections the MDC leaders are giving credibility to the process and, by extension, giving legitimacy to the vote rigging Zanu PF.

41 years and counting of Zanu PF tyrannical rule has left the ordinary Zimbabwean convinced they are totally helpless without the politicians leading the way.

 Many Zimbabweans regarded Robert Mugabe and his Zanu PF cronies as liberation heroes and refused to see them as anything less even in the face of the mountain of evidence of corruption and the Gukurahundi massacre. It took many of them 20 years before they finally admitted Zanu PF leaders were incompetent, corrupt and murderous tyrants and to actively seek regime change by demanding democratic change leading to the holding of free, fair and credible elections.

Zimbabweans have risked life and limb in the fight for democratic change. The people elected MDC leaders on the understanding the party will deliver the democratic changes the nation has been dying for.

We cannot deny that Zanu PF is still in power today because MDC leaders like Nelson Chamisa and Tendai Biti are corrupt and breathtakingly incompetent. They have failed to implement even one reform when they had the chance to do so and they would not boycott elections, to push for reforms, even thou this was and still is the obvious thing to do.

Zanu PF will never implement any reforms as long as the party is assured of the opposition's participation in the elections regardless how flawed the process. We all know that nothing anyone of us say or do will stop Chamisa, Biti, Mwonzora, Mahere and the rest of the MDC leaders and the usual suspects in the opposition camp participating in the next elections. Absolutely nothing!

Blaming Nelson Chamisa and Tendai Biti for MDC A's implosion is vital in that it is the truth but, more significantly, in forcing those who prefer to bury their heads in the sand to see MDC leaders for who they really are - corrupt, incompetent and utterly useless individuals who cannot be trusted to do the obvious thing of boycotting the elections until reforms are implemented.   

The most foolish thing Zimbabweans can do right now is to participate in the next elections with no reforms in place and will give vote rigging Mnangagwa and his Zanu PF cronies legitimacy. MDC leaders will participate out of greed, we cannot stop them. What we can do is denounce the elections as a farce and all opposition politicians who participate as sell-outs.

"Demanding dialogue requires there be an intention, an end goal. It is not open ended, but has to have a rationale accepted by the people as a whole. For example, the single most important demand in the late 1970s was one person, one vote: without this, nothing could have changed in Rhodesia," argued Tony Reeler.

"One person, one vote!" is still a valid rallying call today as it was in the 1970s. Zimbabweans are still hungering for the country's first ever free, fair and credible elections. Both Zanu PF and MDC have all had many golden opportunities to deliver justice, liberty and human rights to all Zimbabweans but have failed because greed got the better of them.

The ordinary Zimbabweans must demand the implementation of the democratic reforms to guarantee "One person, one vote!" If "One person, one vote!" is not guaranteed then the election is a waste of time and resources. If the people can hold stand up and be counted on this, then it would be the most important self-empowering stance in Zimbabwe's history!

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