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Mnangagwa slowly morphing into a Mugabe

10 Nov 2021 at 05:36hrs | Views
DEAR President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Your Excellency, it was typical of Zanu-PF banality that its 19th National Annual People's Conference, held in Bindura last week, rubber-stamped your candidacy. It was given on a silver platter that you were endorsed as the presidential candidate for the 2023 harmonised elections.

Essentially, the conference adhered to party culture of leader worship. It was a formality that you were endorsed unanimously, by herd instinct. Notwithstanding that you will be 82 years old by then, the party, in its wisdom, if not folly, nonetheless endorsed your candidacy.

Be that as it may, it behoves me to congratulate you, in spite of my misgivings for flippant deliberations. As I see it, Zanu-PF was as trite as it was wilful in its endorsement. It was blatantly prodigal to settle for a candidate who will be in his dotage years, come elections.

Ideally, you ought have ruled yourself out of contestation. It could have been opportune for you to announce your retirement. That was your God assigned moment of aptness.

Your Excellency, methinks you owe it first and foremost to yourself,  and secondarily, to the citizenry, to retire with a semblance of honour at the expiration of the current term. It would have been stately for you to spruce up your image in particular,  and that of Zanu-PF in general.

Although the youth league spoke about tampering with the Constitution so as to extend your tenure, your ego ought not be inflated by imbecility. Methinks conceptual thinking is a taxing mental activity. It is a big ask to expect the aged to be imaginative and thoroughly versatile.

It warrants to be viewed with askance that the demands of leading the country was thrust on a veteran whose sunset duly dawned. It is not feasible at your age, to be an imaginative guru like Shakespeare who could intuit moods, thoughts and motives of an array of characters.

Your Excellency, premonition swarmed me ever since your ascendancy to the Presidency in 2017. It shadowed me as if I were an escapee convict. Truly, your succession was disconcerting. It nauseated me through and through.

Misgivings over your coronation overwhelmed me. They crudely jolted me as an ominous repeat of the deposed late former President Robert Mugabe. Surely, I had been extremely disgusted by the obstinacy of Mugabe. His defiance rubbed me the wrong way. Yet, your choice as his successor nonetheless haunted me with biting severity. I wrestled on end with the imperative of engaging into a concerted exercise of minds for  the selection of an ideal successor. However, that was not an inference that his shoes were too big to fill.

Far from it. Actually, I was cognisant that he was mortal like us all. He wore his trousers one leg at a time as all men do. His endowments were truly common as in other men. He might have outwardly appeared stern, yet, inwardly he also concealed fears in his heart.

Your Excellency, my concern was that it was imperative for the successor to be of a different mindset from him. Granted, all who shared the chalice with him ought not have qualified for succession. Their culpability for dark chapters of the country is of the same measure as that of Mugabe.

It was my fervent prayer that the party would elect a youthful successor. Following his ouster, the coup plotters ought to have redefined leadership fundamentals. They could have essentially bypassed the old guard whose thrust was in tandem with that of Mugabe.

It was time vitality was injected. All gyratics at Jongwe House should have been retired also. Their worldview is now obsolete. Their fossil human capital no longer suffices. As I see it, Apostle Paul must have been of their age group when he stated that he fought a good fight.

Methinks attributing attendance at the United Nations world climate change meeting to the success of the engagement and re-egagement policy is an apt case in point of waning faculties. Apparently, the occasion was by no means a diplomatic breakthrough.

All who partook communion with Mugabe forfeited the credibility to succeed him. If they were to search their hearts, they would find themselves deficient. They are as liable as him  for the misgovernance that cost the country her breadbasket of the region status. His mullish zeal to have his own way could have been stopped had they had the conviction to restrain him. Yet, they bolstered his ego as he unleashed the Gukurahundi massacre. And, they chanted his name as he unilaterally withdrew the country from the  Commonwealth.

It was political suicide to pitch him as the single centre of power. He was backed, even when it was evident that his policies were futile. His chaotic commercial farm expropriation resulted in the citizenry saddled with US$3,5 billion in compensation to settle.

Hence, your succeeding Mugabe did not enthuse me. I never looked forward to the dawn of a new era. I was not stimulated into gazing at the clouds in anticipation of the silver lining. As I see it, just as slouching does not change the essence of a reptile, so was your succession.

Your Excellency, as you recited your inaugural vows, Job's doleful speech came to mind. "What I feared has come upon me; what I dreaded has happened to me.  I have no peace, no quietness; but only turmoil," anguished Job. It is woeful for me now as it was for job then.

I believe with certitude that Mugabe bequeathed you with  conceit and uppity. Hence, it was presumptuous of you that your succeeding him would emanate in the creation of a new dispensation whose benefit could be a close approximation of a land of milk and honey.

Your Excellency, methinks your succession did not signal the dawn of a new era. Given your profound mutuality with Mugabe, it would have been a reckless bet for the citizenry to stake hopes for the second republic to culminate from your succeeding him.

Ancient wisdom has it that a man whose only tool is a hammer sees every challenge as a nail. His approach to problem solving is by all means that of hammering. Truly, you were raised on a culture of subjugation. Basically, it is second nature for you to domineer.

Verily, the Mugabe eloquence ceased. But, not his heavy-handness. His ironclad inclination is treasured inheritance he bequeathed to you. Little wonder, the prevailing atmonsphere of apprehension. His wrathful modus operandi is under new hands.

Your Excellency, with the proposed introduction of the Patriotic Bill,  whose essence is to criminalise the opposition by curtailing freedom of speech, the Mugabe legacy is well and truly being perpetuated. Indeed,  vindication for my fears of a false start is self-evident.

As we countdown to your fourth anniversary, sadly, even the age-old principle of judicial independence was debauched. As I see it, you should have followed the Kgalema Motlanthe blueprint. He stood down after bridging the gap following the fall of President Thabo Mbeki.

Source - NewsDay Zimbabwe
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