You must admire the wisdom and courage of some political leaders in Zimbabwe, who in the midst of an uncompleted Global Political Arrangement and increased levels of intra-party violence come up with a belief that elections are the ultimate cure. This is the solution that was proposed this week by Robert Mugabe, Morgan Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara. I got taken aback because one would have thought that among the pressing matters that these three would have debated in a heated way were the violent clashes that happened on Sunday in Harare. I truly was expecting that the solutions to the Sunday skirmishes would have been the main goal of the “tripartite alliance” but of course, they had other ideas that were so urgent to discuss, providing solutions to the country’s problems… through elections?!
Unless I am mistaken, elections will not solve the current problem the country has. Of late, both MDCs have reported acute levels of violence that have been rocking the country, accompanied by the fact that the police have, once again, taken a partisan position – one that allows discrimination against those known to oppose the incumbent president. The rural citizens now have to watch what they say and respect the tribal authority-led campaigns in favour of Zanu PF. Many people I know are simply saying the country is not ready for a national election, but maybe we have been overtaken by events.
I am not against elections in Zimbabwe but I just think the suggestion is premature. It can lead overzealous party machines like the war veterans and youth militia to beat the drums of violent campaigns. We all know that it is easy to keep these groups busy by talking about elections.
Mugabe, the man who suffers from convenient amnesia
Through the lenses that see what is not supposed to be seen is that view that Mugabe is an old man who probably wants this election to happen before his sight goes for good, probably in the next year or so. It’s funny how he says the police commissioner misled him on the violence that happened on Sunday in Harare. We all know to whose benefit the violence is supposed be. In many of his interactions with other leaders in the coalition arrangement, Mugabe has suffered many of these amnesias which have seen him deny knowledge of things done by senior party of his members. If we were to analyse this in relation to the wiki-leaks, where Mugabe’s betrayal came from the top, one might hear him out but the problem is Mugabe has caused so much suffering in the country to levels where it’s just hard to believe whatever he says in his own defence. So on this one; he has no sympathy from me.
Watch out Zuma, Bob has his horses ready for you!
To me, this election call seems to be a direct attack on the SADC mediation efforts led by Jacob Zuma. True enough that the Coalition government has outlived its time, but its main purpose was to stabilise the country’s political environment. Given that, the question must be asked why the MDC is becoming part of a plan that will come back to bite them again after Zanu PF cheats to win this so‑called election. When that happens they will no doubt seek SADC intervention. It is understandable for Zanu PF because of late Zuma has resumed his interest in Zimbabwean affairs, even suggesting the deployment of a three-member regional team to monitor the full implementation of the GPA. This regional team is an idea that emanated from the June SADC summit held in Pretoria this year. We all know Zanu PF is very much allergic to this move and so their best bet is to befriend MDC and set up elections as the solution to the current problems. The expectation had been that before an election, the emphasis would be on electoral reforms covering matters related to the election code of conduct and amongst other things the very ugly head of violence that was seen in Harare on Sunday?
While we understand Zanu PF’s urge for an early election, I think the question would be to ask what’s in it for the MDC to rush into making such calls when we know what kind of chaos is associated with them at this moment.