Mugabe belongs to an Old People’s Home, not State House

Posted: November 22, 2012 in Uncategorized

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe’s ZANU-PF is heartless to say the least. All the ten ZANU-PF political provinces have been gang-pressed and whipped into emphatically endorsing the octogenarian as the party’s presidential candidate in the upcoming elections set for 2013. In the forthcoming polls he wants held in March 2013, Mugabe faces his nemesis Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai of the MDC T, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), Professor Welshman Ncube and other presidential aspirants that have the penchant of popping up on the eve of every presidential race. In 2008 polls, PM Tsvangirai thumped Mugabe in the initial presidential race before the discredited Zimbabwe Electoral Commission declared that the MDC-T leader had not garnered enough votes to be declared the next president of the republic, forcing a bloody presidential election in which more than 500 supporters of Tsvangirai were killed in state-sponsored violence. Tsvangirai subsequently boycotted the one-man run-off but Mugabe’s victory was declared a sham, leading to the formation of the present acrimonious coalition government. The rest is history.

But it is the endorsement of Mugabe to contest another presidential election which shows that indeed ZANU-PF people are heartless and do not have the interest of Zimbabwe at heart. Given his advanced age – Mugabe is 88 – any reasonable and sane ZANU-PF supporter knows that the old man of Zimbabwe’s politics needs a deserved rest. This is purely an abuse of an old man by opportunists and greedy politicians in ZANU-PF who want to ride on the tired back of an octogenarian as they try to protect ill-gotten wealth. It would seem Mugabe himself has no qualms about his latest endorsement to stand in an election against people nearly 30-years his

All dead for challenging Mugabe…

juniors. But it does not as a surprise to some of us. Mugabe wants to become the country’s life president if by a miracle he wins the next elections, something which I think would be a mockery to our country as the man is too old to cope with daily challenges of Zimbabwe.

The country is in economic turmoil and there is so much disunity which obviously threatens political reforms that we had hoped will help Zimbabwe recover from its current ills. Recent figures released by Transparency International’s 2011 corruption index indicate that Zimbabwe, under Mugabe and the ZANU-PF leadership is a highly corrupt country. The index draws on assessments and opinion surveys carried out by independent and reputable institutions. These surveys and assessments include questions related to the bribery of public officials, kickbacks in public procurement, embezzlement of public funds, and the effectiveness of public sector anti-corruption efforts. Zimbabwe scored 2.2 which is a clear sign that the country is in trouble and suggestions we have are that it would be difficult to root out corruption in a government led by Mugabe where, for 32 years in his rule, it has become clear to us that he is not the right man to clean up Zimbabwe’s politics.

Why Mugabe?

After last week’s endorsement of Mugabe by his party structures, questions abound why people in ZANU PF appear so heartless and desperate to choose someone whom they know is very weak and selfish. One reason could be that people in ZANU-PF realise that as long as he is alive, he remains in charge of things in the party to such an extent that every member of that party is terrified to go against his will. ZANU-PF people are afraid of what might happen to them if they were to suggest that Mugabe must go. Remember what happened to Dzikamai Mavhaire in the late 1990s when he famously said Mugabe Must Go. He was thrown into political wildness for nearly a decade only to be forgiven before 2008 polls as ZANU-PF faced annihilation in Masvingo from PM Tsvangirai’s formation. Six ZANU-PF provincial chairpersons were in 2006 suspended for five years after plotting to effect regime change in ZANU-PF. The Dinyane Debacle also claimed the scalpe of former ZANU-PF spin-doctor Jonathan Moyo who was only re-admitted into the party on the eve of the bloody 2010 albeit after apologising profusely to Mugabe and his inner circle for participating in the political machinations to ring changes in ZANU-PF. Patrick Chinamasa, another Mugabe apologist, cried uncontrolled for being “misled by the Devil” in his involvement in the Dinyane Debacle.  This is the price people in ZANU-PF are afraid to pay for advocating for leadership renewal in the party which is known for using deadly violence when pushed to the wall.

It has to be remembered that election times are very dangerous times in ZANU-PF and history has told us that internal party squabbles that threaten the status quo have always been meet with deadly prices, for instance the mysterious deaths of former youth Ministers Border Gezi and Elliot Manyika. Both died as they prepared to restructure ZANU-PF provinces ahead of crucial elections. Others in the party have paid by different ways – through violence, intimidation, threats and isolation. Given this background, one would find it easy to conclude that no one in their right senses would dare challenge Mugabe. So his endorsement was expected.

Mugabe is a master of the art of the politics of patronage. The current case in point is the use of diamonds from the Marange fields to oil the patronage system. It borders to bribery. Look at the so called US$20 million Presidential Farm Inputs Scheme. The scheme is meant to benefit ZANU-PF supporters who are doled out farm inputs, including maize seed. While sources of the funds remain anonymous, what is certain is that Mugabe is using these resources to garner support for his presidential bid, which somehow explains why he got a nod from most branches. Bribing people is not new to ZANU-PF and most of the time it is always accompanied with threats and intimidation whereby starvation is forcing people to accept the bribes in exchange for their support for Mugabe.

Hate him or love him, Mugabe is also a master of the divide and rule tactics. For long now, Mugabe has kept his party members guessing on who might succeed him and that environment creates an opportunity for Mugabe to have the upper regarding ZANU-PF’s

The man could be better off at an old people’s home

succession politics. This situation creates a political vacuum where Mugabe remains on top of things with enough information to send wrong signals to warring factions who then spend time focusing on each other rather than Mugabe. We all know that the Joice Mujuru and Emmerson Mnangagwa factions are already at each other’s throats and none of these  factions would dare take the war to Mugabe while he is still alive, especially after what happened to the late General Solomon Mujuru.

Implications for Zimbabwe

The main worry about Mugabe’s re-election to lead ZANU-PF as mentioned earlier is that at his age, he will be a national disaster if he wins next year’s elections. Natural factors tell us that people of his age cannot concentrate or remember everything that they are told. Running a country is serious business that needs alert and energetic people and Mugabe is not one. As already stated above, corruption has spiralled out of control and Mugabe is certainly not capable of stopping it. Political unity of the country is unmanageable and one wonders where Mugabe will get the strength to solve issues of dispute at the same time thinking about jobs for the young people. I agree with Welshman Ncube, MDC President when he says “President Robert Mugabe has robbed the elderly of their past and now he wants to rob young people of their future”. Seeing ZANU-PF people have once again betrayed the nation by selecting Mugabe, it is left to us to fight tooth and nail to make sure Mugabe goes to an old people’s home instead of state house.

  1. Rejoice Ngwenya says:

    Old Pople Home? No way, modern history museum!

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