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#ThisFlag pastor is nothing but only seeking political relevance

24 May 2016 at 13:24hrs | Views
The economic problems that are currently a talk in every Zimbabwean`s lips have driven people into believing and applauding any Tom and Dick who comes over saying that he/she can come up with solutions to how the economic problems of this country can be solved. For that reason "#ThisFlag campaign" by one cleric known as Evan Mawarire has the opposition media jumping over it and getting excited for the coming into the political sphere of that cleric-turned-political activist who has exchanged some bible verses for political activism.

Cleric Mawarire has decided to follow under the footsteps of the late Bishop Abel Muzorewa who in the 1970s decided to get seriously into politics while the church congregation stood precariously waiting for his stewardship in the church. Bishop Muzorewa went on to become the Prime Minister of the short-lived Zimbabwe-Rhodesia in 1979 and Evan Mawarire thinks that with his #ThisFlag campaign that could catapult him into that position which the late Bishop attained. This his history Mawarire and this writer cannot see it repeating itself here. Stand guided by this one cleric Mawarire.

For those in the dark over this campaign, Cleric Evan Mawarire who heads a-yet-to be named church with seventy congregants in all around the country, has "#ThisFlag campaign" which he is urging Zimbabweans to come out in their numbers confronting the government to force it to fix well the deteriorating economic situation in the country. Mawarire has recorded his videos and posted in various social media communication channels like WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter etc. making it possible for his followers to get to watch and listen to his videos.  This has taken the private media by storm and got an opportunity to make him appear as if he is superhuman being. This is seen in how they have jumped into writing about his #ThisFlag campaign as something which has never happened in the country.

Reports in the private media coming some few days ago have pointed to the fact that Evan Mawarire`s #ThisFlag campaign has taken Zimbabweans by surprise to the extent that everyone needs to be associated with it. The private media brings a picture which shows that every Zimbabwean is now for Mawarire`s $ThisFlag campaign. They want to make those who have not yet seen the videos to believe that it is necessary to hunt for it. The private media have thrown away good ethical journalism which call for true reporting with well researched information in the process writing out a story without facts.

Headlines in the private media like "Zimbabweans join the flag protest, #ThisFlag protest rattles---------Mugabe henchmen, ZANU PF panics over #ThisFlag campaign", and a host of others not mentioned here picture a situation standing as if this  #ThisFlag campaign is everywhere in the country. Such a type of reporting is sending a wrong message to the readers and it is meant to make people believe that Mawarire has just turned to be someone important on space of some few days. It signals unethical way of informing people about a situation. Such reportage without tangible evidence to support those facts is wrong and uncalled for.

In one of those newspapers reports, the readers are told that Mawarire`s #ThisFlag campaign has accumulated about eleven thousand followers in his Facebook page making him a hero of the opposition`s spin-doctors. Surprisingly the same newspapers are failing to inform their readers that eleven thousand followers are just like a drop in the ocean in a country with about fourteen million people. Why is it that the so called eleven thousand followers of Mawarire are turned to be rattling ZANU PF failing to compare that number with more than thirteen million in the country who have not bothered to notice Mawarire`s political mischief.  What makes the private media to believe that Mawarire`s #ThisFlag campaign would change the situation in the country by making people to revolt against the only government which brought peace to the once downtrodden citizens.

The private media should not forget that the #ThisFlag campaign by Mawarire is not the first euphoria to hit the social media with people showing enthusiasms over it. Before the 2013 harmonized elections the social media was awash with Baba Jukwa, a faceless Facebook page which used to post sensitive information about ZANU PF becoming a favourite to those who were in the opposition politics. Baba Jukwa made quite a large number of some followers as it campaigned vigorously for the opposition using that Facebook page. That Facebook was a favourite with the opposition political groups as it daily posted messages that were damaging to the ruling party ZANU PF

Those who followed baba Jukwa thought that ZANU PF was going to be finished as damaging posts against the revolutionary party were posted on daily basis with some sensitive information which could have been discussed in the Politburo meetings finding its ways into that baba Jukwa Facebook page. Baba Jukwa even went on to claim that he was going to announce the 2013 harmonized elections so that people were not going to be disadvantaged like what allegedly happened in the 2008 elections which took almost a month with elections results unannounced. Surprisingly when the 2013 harmonized elections were held baba Jukwa disappeared in the social media without notice and failing to announce elections results as promised. This happened after baba Jukwa has discovered that the opposition political parties had been whitewashed by the ruling party in both the presidential and parliamentary elections.

So the #ThisFlag campaign by Mawarire is nothing to celebrate about as it would suffer the same fate as the faceless Facebook page known as baba Jukwa. The same private media which has now taken upon itself to spread the word of #ThisFlag campaign would be ashamed in the near future as Mawarire is not going to sustain his campaign the same way as what baba Jukwa encountered. It would be a matter of time before the same opposition media houses to write positive things about the ruling party as #ThisFlag campaign would not be able incite the peace loving Zimbabweans to turn violently against government.

Well it is a fact that Zimbabwe is under some economic difficulties which have of late left the country facing some liquidity problems but could that make people like Mawarire to proffer economic solutions through revolting against the government. Why is it that the same newspapers are not asking Mawarire to come up with a host of solutions to the economic problems if he thinks that he has more? What makes him believe that if ZANU PF is revolted against then economic problems in the country would be solved?

Zimbabweans should guard against such people like Mawarire who only come up with issues that draw attention of the international community with no solutions to the economic problems of country. The Arab springs that caused the overthrow of some governments in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya some few years ago did not come with economic solutions in those countries. Today in those countries there is no peace as violence and wars are happening on daily basis.

Libya today is run by warlords with no government in place but when people like Mawarire`s calibre were celebrating the demise of the Libyan government headed by Murmur Gadhafi, they thought they would get their own Canaan where they would feed themselves with honey and milk but alas things are bad.

So the private media should guard against that and stop fuelling violence through coverage of such people like Mawarire because the security forces would not just let people disturb the prevailing peace in the country for the sake of selfish gains by certain unruly individuals without them fighting back. Let the private media know that Zimbabweans want this peace and tranquillity to remain in place. It should be known that economic problems cannot be solved by demonstrations and revolting against the government but through peaceful negotiations for possible peaceful solutions.

John Mukumbo <

Source - John Mukumbo
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