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Mnangagwa is changing the game

20 Feb 2022 at 08:50hrs | Views
Within a few days, President Mnangagwa threw serious warning shots.

Some are already calling them silencing shots.

The President gave opposition opportunists a teaser of forthcoming attractions. The opportunists immediately went into mute because they suddenly came face-to-face with the clinical politician and master tactician that some of us have always known President Mnangagwa to be.

When they say ED is the game-changer, they are not trying to flatter him or to fool the electorate. Let me state it boldly and categorically now — President Mnangagwa will shock many.

His masterstroke decisions and actions over the past few days clearly showed that by the time we get to the general elections in 2023, it will be game-over for all the pretenders in the opposition. And what is refreshing is that he does not only dish out juicy policies and decisions that the people want.

As he dishes out the polices and decisions, he has this unique and somewhat casual way of easily connecting with the people. He is a natural charmer.

It all started about a week ago when ministers and heads of public institutions signed performance-based contracts that have been hailed as a confirmation that the President now wants results to speak louder than words.

Performance-based contracts are negotiated performance agreements between the Government, acting as the owner of an agency, and ministers acting as employees.

Performance-based contracts are the in-thing around the world as they ensure effectiveness and efficiency in public institutions, local authorities and State-owned enterprises that have over the years been accused of poor performance, especially in the management of public resources.

The performance-based contracts are a modern strategic management approach designed to achieve desired results with available resources.

Zimbabweans welcomed this noble decision by President Mnangagwa, which will go a long way in promoting the optimum utilisation of the scarce revenue streams that flow into the fiscus.

Through the contracts, the Government will emphasise the achievement of tangible and high-quality results from limited resources. This game-changing trajectory will go a long way in cultivating a culture of accountability and good governance in all public institutions.

As the opposition opportunists were still wondering what had hit them, President Mnangagwa came up with yet another game-changing decision in Epworth.

A few weeks ago, the Government had announced that it would regularise informal settlements in all urban areas, and when President Mnangagwa launched the Zanu-PF campaign for the forthcoming by-elections in Epworth, he walked the talk by announcing that the Government would issue title deeds to residents in the area.

Residents of Epworth, who had been living in the constituency for years without proper documentation, were ecstatic. They couldn't believe that Christmas could actually come in mid-February.

"Once you get hold of your title deed, you have security for your land. It becomes your inheritance. This will ultimately do away with land barons. So, we are in this process of regularising settlements as well as issuing title deeds," he said.

This game-changing decision sent shivers down the spine of opposition opportunists.

Over the years, the opposition has had a stranglehold over most urban constituencies, and so the decision by President Mnangagwa really rattled the opportunists, who have messed up the country's cities and towns.

The decision in Epworth was just the beginning of the campaign by Zanu-PF to wrest control of urban constituencies from the opposition.

The opposition should be very, very worried because it is clear that Zanu-PF is now very serious about winning hearts and minds of the urban electorate by making bold decisions and taking action. It's game-on in the urban areas!

Again, as the opposition opportunists were still grappling to understand the gameplan, President Mnangagwa threw yet another dice.

Even the neutrals were stunned when the President warned Cabinet Ministers to desist from embarking on unnecessary foreign travel and instead focus on developmental programmes in line with Vision 2030.

"I have observed a worrisome trend (of) ministers, you are now prone to foreign travel, along with your senior officials. This unbecoming culture should stop forthwith," President Mnangagwa said in his opening remarks at the first Cabinet meeting of 2022 that was held at State House last Tuesday.

Talk of striking the right cord at the right time!

And the whispers grew even louder, "this man is up to something. With every passing day, he is sounding very genuine in his efforts to revive the economy."

Indeed, the President is showing that he means business. With such bold and game-changing decisions, the economy is set to respond. And when the economy responds, those surviving on protest politics should know that their time is up.

A good example was when last week the opposition opportunists tried to incite civil servants in general and teachers in particular to go on strike.

President Mnangagwa, through his foot-soldier, the Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Professor Mthuli Ncube, responded in emphatic style.

President Mnangagwa awarded civil servants and teachers a lucrative package that includes a 20 percent salary increment backdated to January 1, with the equivalent of US$100 of this in foreign currency from next month, school fees support and 34 000 flats to be built in school grounds over five years. The prophets of doom were deflated by this master-stroke.

As President Mnangagwa continues to turn on the screws and close all avenues of political mischief, the opposition opportunists are at sixes and sevens.

Remember the lyrics of the song "Nowhere to Run" by Stegosaurus Rex: "Out of ideas, nowhere to run! Looking right down, barrel of a gun . . . You are gonna die, I'm gonna kill you!"

The opposition opportunists must be stewing in paralysing fear.

But these little pawns in the opposition should have known from November 2017 that they were up against perspicacious and sagacious strategists who with time were bound to obliterate them into smithereens.

Some of us saw this coming and we knew it was only a matter of time.

A critical look at how the November 2017 transition was executed is enough to show that President Mnangagwa is an astute politician.

Events happened as if this was a script from a Hollywood movie, and even the gullible opposition leaders cheered as President Mnangagwa came to power.

After getting into power, the President, a veteran from the liberation struggle, knew that politics is about structures and strategies.

Those who think the policies that he is implementing now are by accident should take time to read his inaugural speech delivered at the National Sports Stadium on November 24, 2017.

In that historic speech, he laid his cards on the table and I vividly remember him saying: "We have an economy to recover, a people to serve. Each and every one of us must now earn their hour, day, week and month at work. Gone are the days of absenteeism and desultory application, days of unduly delaying and forestalling decisions and services in the hope of extorting dirty rewards. That will have to stop. A new culture must now inform and animate our daily conduct."

He went on to speak about re-engagement with the international community, about Zimbabwe having no malice towards any nation and letting bygones be bygones. He emphasised that under his leadership, Zimbabwe would embrace the principle of mutual respect and common humanity.

"In acknowledging the honour you have bestowed upon me, I recognise that the urgent tasks that beckon will not be accomplished through speeches, necessary as these may be," said President Mnangagwa.

From then on, he set the ball rolling when he appointed a Cabinet that silenced many of his critics. On September 8, 2018, even the NewsDay, a privately-owned newspaper, was stunned by the decision by President Mnangagwa.

In an article titled, "Mnangagwa in Cabinet shocker," the newspaper wrote: "President Emmerson Mnangagwa yesterday pulled a shocker when he dropped several Zanu-PF party big-wigs, some who have served as Cabinet Ministers for several years, and appointed three technocrats — former banker Mthuli Ncube as Finance Minister, Winston Chitando and Amon Murwira (who both bounced back as Mines and Higher Education Ministers respectively) – at the helm of his Government's plans to rescue the country's battered economy."

Indeed, this bold decision by President Mnangagwa signalled his commitment to serve the people and revive the economy.

After appointing a Cabinet comprising technocrats and sharp-shooters, President Mnangagwa came up with Vision 2030, which resonates with the aspirations of many Zimbabweans.

The vision seeks to turn Zimbabwe into "a prosperous and empowered upper middle-income society by 2030."

There are three bedrocks for the attainment of Vision 2030 — the Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP) (2018-2020); the First National Development Plan (2021-2025) and the Second National Development Plan (2026-2030).

In line with Vision 2030, Zimbabwe has recorded a number of successes that include, stabilising the economy, taming inflation, rehabilitating and upgrading infrastructure, dam construction, boosting national food security and production, improving livestock production, devolution, dealing with corruption, restoring sanity in the financial sector, boosting mineral production in the mining sector and revamping the country's education system.

As the country marches towards achieving Vision 2030, President Mnangagwa has made it clear that "nyika inovakwa nevene vayo" and "we shall build Zimbabwe brick-by-brick".

In his 41st Independence Day Speech on April 18, 2021, President Mnangagwa said: "With bolts and bars, brick upon brick and stone upon stone, we are rebuilding our great country. We are harnessing and effectively deploying our local resources and human capital to upgrade and modernise the country's infrastructure."

And whenever he speaks, he always makes it clear that the road to attaining a prosperous and empowered upper middle-income society by 2030 will not be easy.

"Through hard honest work and our trust in God Almighty, there is no limit to what our country can achieve, as we build the Zimbabwe we all want," said the President as he concluded his 41st Independence Day speech.

If within a few days President Mnangagwa's pronouncements and actions have thrown the opposition into a state of paralysis, what else could be in store for these opportunists as we march towards 2023?

The late Jamaican reggae superstar Bob Marley in the song Iron, Lion, Zion" sings, "I am on the rock and then I check a stock. I have to run like a fugitive to save the life I live!"

The opposition opportunists better "run like fugitives" because the game-changer is getting busy changing the game!

Source - The Sunday Mail
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