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Madhuku a victim of Stockholme Syndrome

19 May 2016 at 21:47hrs | Views
Professor Lovemore Madhuku made a stunning volte face with regards to the way elections are conducted in the Republic of  Zimbabwe.  "Elections in the country have never been rigged and are held in line with the country's laws".Madhuku said.

Prof Madhuku has been a fierce critic of Zimbabwe Electoral Commission from time immemorial and his latest gaffe that there is no rigging in Zimbabwe is quite shocking.It is professor Madhuku who suggested that it was illegal for ZEC to deny people in the diaspora the right to vote and his latest volte face must not be overlooked. However, it is important to define what rigging is. Rigging is any subtle  attempt to influence the electoral outcome by subterfuge.

Every election in Zimbabwe has been signposted by subtle attempts to influence the electoral outcome by ZANU PF. Its something that is on the wall.In the previous elections, some constituencies recorded more votes for Mugabe than there are citizens in those areas and thats rigging at best.Gerrymandering is a manipulation of the boundaries of an electoral constituency so as to favour one party and one doesnt need a rocket scientist to detect that Chiredzi North Constituency is a gerrymandered constituency deliberately designed to exclude urburn dwellers who are known to be hostile to ZANU PF.That is rigging Professor Madhuku.It is nothing but a cocktail of  rigging shenanigans that engineered  phyrric victory for ZANU PF in the past elections.

In 2008, Mugabe and his ZANU-PF party essentially lost at the ballot box, and remained in power only by pursuing a campaign of political violence that caused his main presidential challenger,Morgan Tsvangirai to withdraw from the runoff vote.The first voter registration drive kicked off in May 2013, focusing mainly on ZANU-PF strongholds in the north, the voter registration days were reduced and the whole voter registration proccess was opaque.Can we not call it rigging when one million voters are disenfranchised by failing to register due to limited registration period.Can we not call it rigging when ZEC took a month to release the Presidential Election Results in March 2008.They called it meticulous verification.

Those who had been at Midlands State University where Prof Madhuku was addressing a public lecture on constitutionalism and rule of law know that you can only address a political public lecture there when you are a ZANU PF apologist.As unpalatable as it is that's the state of affairs at State Universities.

Professor Lovemore Madhuku said in the 2013 elections ZEC perfomed its duties and responsibilities according to the laws of the land. Prof is million miles off the mark because the law of the land does not prescribe the release of the voters roll a day before the election.The law of the land does not prescribe that the voters roll be under the armpit of ZEC and ZEC alone.
It is now common in Zimbabwean politics to see  critics of ZANU PF warming up to ZANU PF and expressing extreme eagerness to work for ZANU PF and the Government.This normally happens when those critics are confronted with an ignominy of political irrelevance. They thus ingratiate themselves with their former nemesis anticipating some political favours.This is common among political charlatans who are pro - power, pro-positions and not pro-people. Such people are purveyors and apostles of politics of prosperity.

This is not the first time to witness dramatic u-turns by former ZANU-PF critics.Raymond Majongwe of the Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe shocked many by making statements praise-singing and eulogising the heartless ZANU PF regime. Qhubani Moyo who once served in Welshman Ncube MDC also made a volte face which resulted in him being appointed a ZEC Commissioner by the President.Its allowed in a democratic society  to change political preferences.

However in some instances the change of political tone can be as a result of Stockholme Syndrome. Stockholme syndrome , or capture-bonding, is a psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and sympathy and have positive feelings toward their captors, sometimes to the point of defending and identifying with the  captors. These feelings are generally considered irrational in light of the danger or risk endured by the victims, who essentially mistake a lack of abuse from their captors for an act of kindness.Stockholm syndrome can be seen as a form of traumatic bonding, which does not necessarily require a hostage scenario, but which describes "strong emotional ties that develop between two persons where one person intermittently harasses, beats, threatens, abuses, or intimidates the other."

Considering the brutality that Professor Madhuku was subjected to by the State machinery vis-à-vis  his latest outbursts, one can conclude that he is a possible victim of Stockholme Syndrome.

Wilton Nyasha Machimbira, a Political Scientist.For comments and feedback can be contacted on

Source - Wilton Nyasha Machimbira
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