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Don’t legitimise Zanu PF rule

I READ with utter disbelief that the MDC is set to contest the March 2005 parliamentary poll (“MDC to contest 2005 poll”, the Financial Gazette, December 31)

-serif”>I do not understand the rationale behind the MDC going to the poll with repressive laws such as Aippa, Posa, the Broadcasting Services Act and a partisan Electoral Supervisory Commission still in place.

Our daily access to information is now restricted to the Herald and the ZBH while the opposition is denied democratic space to campaign.

Beleaguered Information minister Jonathan Moyo has made life so difficult that we cannot even meet friends at any social gathering under the watchful eye of Posa.

Such selective application of the law is not uncommon in our society where unconstitutional laws are passed in retrospect just to deal with specific individuals or perceived critics of the establishment so as to perpetuate the rule of Zanu PF.

It is common knowledge that Zanu PF cannot win a democratic election and the prospect of a free and fair election in March is inconceivable given President Mugabe’s reign of terror and the chaotic scheme of things today.

In fact, it would be suicidal for the MDC to legitimise Zanu PF rule by participating in the forthcoming election.

Our political and socio-economic Tsunami is so complex that we cannot resolve it without assistance from the global community.

The African Union and European Union member states could, for instance, sanction Zimbabwe for her hypocritical approach to the Sadc protocol and guidleines on elections and failure to uphold universal tenets of democracy which are enshrined in our constitution.

Civic orgnisations such as the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) ought to publicise the Zimbabwe crisis and conscientise the populace on its human dignity.

When people are oppressed, but sufficiently conscientised on their human rights, they naturally get angry and will do anything to free themselves.

We all marvelled at the peace-loving people of Ukraine as they sprang into a spontaneous mass protest for a re-run of a rigged general election and ousted Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych.

But President Mugabe is as shrewd as a serpent in dealing with the long-suffering people of Zimbabwe.

Zanu PF has passed the NGO Bill which will severely compromise civil society and outlaw charitable organisations critical of government policies and promoting democracy.

A Swiss voluntary organisation which was feeding thousands of impoverished school children has already been banned, even before the Bill is signed into law. Unemployed school-leavers are sent to the notorious National Youth Service Camps where they are brainwashed and converted to Zanu PF.

I am not surprised that Zimbabwe, once the jewel of Africa, was recently described as “the worst part of the world” by an international research institute.

With the highest rate of inflation in the world, hundreds of companies closing shop, high unemployment rate, a critical shortage of food and forex, a crumbling education sector, poor health service delivery, political violence and gross violation of human rights, Zimbabwe is surely mired in an unprecedented crisis.

What makes our catastrophe even more frightening is that the regime does not accept responsibility when things go wrong, let alone reverse its disastrous policies.

In a nutshell, the problems engulfing Zimbabwe today largely emanate from the rigged parliamentary and presidential elections of 2000 and 2002 respectively. The regime is using brutal force to cow the populace into submission in futile efforts to protect its vested interests in the status quo.

Government repression of the media, harassment of the opposition and disastrous economic policies fit logically well in the context of a regime that lost the mandate to rule in 2000.

Brian Gata,


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