Violent Mugabe set to hand over power to Military Men?

Posted: January 30, 2012 in Uncategorized

Can the African Union help us?

Personally, I have little hope in the African Union when it comes to the Zimbabwe questions. They have failed to stop people getting massacred in the DRC, Rwanda, Somalia and other parts of the continent. As for Zimbabweans, I think our case is just not yet ripe to be taken seriously. African Heads of State are meeting in Ethiopia this week while for Zimbabwe news we are told Mugabe is lobbying for early elections and at the same time seeking AU protection. It’s not clear against whom he wants protection though – probably the “West” that resides in Mugabe’s imagination threatening attacks along the lines of what happened to Gadhafi.  The reports from South African’s Sunday Times also suggest that Mugabe is preparing a retirement plan which is most likely going to see Emerson Mnangagwa as his successor. We have heard such reports before and they have never materialised but I believe this time people should take these rumours seriously and start preparing for life after Mugabe.

Signalling the army powers after Mugabe

It’s hard to predict what life after Mugabe will be like but I think there are signs that the country would go deeper into the hands of military chiefs who, of late, have been positioning themselves in almost all key spheres of Zimbabwean society including business and politics. In my previous articles, I have written about how the military is controlling key industrial sectors like the diamonds industry and how the army boss, Constantine Chiwenga, is heavily interfering with the day-to-day political running of the country. Several

Our AU Rep is not well..

reports have told us how Chiwenga is using Mugabe’s spokesperson, George Charamba to influence Mugabe’s political life by editing his speeches to reflect the army’s views on things. Last week, Chiwenga apparently summoned the Zanu PF co-chair of the constitution-making process to provide him with a briefing. This is further confirmation of the military’s interests in grabbing power in Zimbabwe. Another significant signal of state militarisation is in the figure of Emerson Mnangagwa – currently the Minister of Defence– who is also close to Chiwenga. The death of Solomon Mujuru has cleared way for him as the likely successor to Mugabe and he fits this profile particularly well because of his role in the killings in Midlands and Matabeleland. Like other army bosses, Mnangagwa is heavily involved in the diamonds industry underworld where at one point he made himself US$4 million in a single deal by acting as middleman in the sale of the precious stones to shady characters in South Africa. As the Minister of Defence, Mnangagwa is well placed to sustain military activity in politics. As to the succession debate, Mugabe will be comfortable to leave power in the hands of people like Mnangagwa and Chiwenga, who are currently his top partners in crime dating back to days before Independence.

What of us, the people?

While the African Union is seen as having little influence on what could happen in Zimbabwe, all hope must not be lost in Africa. Zimbabweans ought to devise better strategies on how to engage other bodies like SADC and their neighbouring countries in general. Efforts must be made to help these countries become friends of Zimbabwe rather than friends of Mugabe. By this, I refer to the progress that the SADC team on Zimbabwe has made to help smooth things in Zimbabwe by way of forging a coalition government. They appointed a facilitator, South Africa, who I believe has been doing a good job in facilitating the process of implementing GPA agreements. South Africa has done so based on their own economic considerations in that a better Zimbabwe will mean fewer refugees in their country. It’s normal for them to behave this way and they would certainly find it strange for Zimbabweans to demonstrate against their position in the GPA facilitation – as was done through the recent protests at RSA Embassies across the world. It would be much better instead for Zimbabweans to realise that power lies in Zimbabwe. It is up to Zimbabweans to implement the GPA not South Africans. All parties sit in this process and none of their leadership has gone to bed hungry and the question must be asked why they should go to bed at all without agreeing on better reforms for the country. It should be people’s power that asks why MPs would get an increased per diem of US$200 a day while workers go home with US$300 a month.

As Thabo Mbeki was famous for saying, the solution lies with the people of Zimbabwe and I see more sense in this than in seeking others to do our politics!

  1. Rejoice Ngwenya says:

    You right, we wouldn’t want to waste more time ‘looking to’ AU. This is a good-for-nothing outfit for snoozing dictators.

  2. Usha Mcnee says:

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