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Rules for political office very clear

POLITICAL developments in the world and in my country in the last couple of years had driven me to the brink of accepting the notion that politics is a dirty game. Now I know that that notion is

only a convenient excuse to give up the fight. Politics is an indispensable evil.

But could you blame me for that feeling against politics? US President Bill Clinton did it and got away with it. Tell me it’s not a manipulation of the public’s faith in the institution of the presidency.

Recently President George Bush had the highest job approval rating in US history. He scaled the ladder courtesy of Americans’ fear of “clear and present danger” to their beautiful country. Tell me it’s not a manipulation of collective public vulnerability.

In California recently, a movie star easily “terminated” a career politician. Exactly whose game is it if someone can just walk out of a movie set and march into a political office without a drop of sweat? Again, our obsession with pop culture and celebrity gets raped in broad daylight for political profit.

Give me a break, for I didn’t invent the phrase “democratic right”. If Peter Ndlovu decides that he has the muscle for State House and we instantly forget that his greatest aptitude lies with soccer, then for heaven’s sake, let us vote him in. Everyone has the democratic right to seek political office as we’ve every democratic right to elect the worst out of the best.

Zimbabwe gives the best answer to what kind of game politics really is. The rules of engagement in our case are simple – cheat, lie, kill, steal and quarrel with the Tony Blairs of this world, anything in violation of the acceptable rules.

Do Zimbabweans really feel their political power? Can they touch it, see it, take it for a stroll in the Harare Gardens? I doubt it.

Politics is a game entirely detached from the universe of the man on the street. Politicians are gladiators motivated mostly by personal quest and an insatiable desire for the history books. In the early 60s, Fidel Catro declared that history would eventually recognise him. Mugabe seems determined to chart the same course.

Pity that we can’t stop politicians shaping our history, but we should already be wary of the history future generations will inherit, thanks to Mugabe.

Good old Mugabe is only attached to Zimbabwe in the physical sense. In the real sense, he’s floating in a far away galaxy wrestling with the enemies of Zimbabwe, supposedly for our sake. Of course the international community can only think of sanctions in response. In the final analysis, we’re caught in between; we pay the ultimate price!

What is ridiculous is the fact that through a universally accepted conspiracy named elections, we collectively and willingly sign politicians’ employment contracts.

Honest politicians in Zimbabwe can forgive me but their number is too small to intimidate me into retraction. Mind you, I haven’t forgotten that time when they walked out of parliament and left the thugs to pass their draconian laws.

There are also times when they chose not to take a stand when I expected them to. Pardon my wrath, but the invisible conditions on my vote requires them to make sacrifices at any cost.

Lord of mercy, you couldn’t have envisioned this chaos during creation! And what the hell did JF Kennedy mean by a government of the people, for the people, by the people? Put it to a referendum today and Zimbabweans will choose to eliminate these creatures named politicians and rule themselves. Whatever that means!

Politics is indeed a complicated, evil, eternal feast. In Zimbabwe, the starter course has been served. Let us all – writers, students, peasants, professionals, vendors, Tom, Dick and Chiedza hurry to the table for the main course.

Obert Ronald Madondo,

Toronto, Canada.

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