The only way out

WE all agree that all is not in order in our motherland and we need sacrifices now more than ever before. We have to forget our personal ambitions and do what we must do.

As leaders, we must be able and prepared to lose what we love most for the good of Zimbabwe.

What the contenders in the March 29 elections should know is that Zimbabweans want solutions — real solutions — not politicking.

We have had truckloads of that trash before and if anyone has not learned by now he is a damned fool. The 28 years of school in politicking for Zimbabwe is a long time for anybody not to have grasped the meanings behind all the political rhetoric.

What we must all understand is that the country is being run along the lines of the mafia — all with the omerta “code of silence”. All insiders who oppose the hegemonic oligarchy are seen not as reformers but as enemies of the “people”.

What we must know is that nobody is God here on earth — none is sacrosanct or a deity.

By voting this time Zimbabweans must realise the importance of what they are about to do. First, we have to acknowledge that a problem exists and that we need to have a viable solution.
 
We are voting for all-encompassing solutions, not for politics. If we all want power then we had better announce the victory of the ruling party. Our new leaders must have solutions, not political power and megalomania.
 
There is a danger that history might repeat itself if we let our egocentrism overshadow our reason. We know the problem causers — and they also know themselves and their narrow interests.
 
Oppression is oppression whether it is done by a priest or Ian Smith. In fact, what we have now is worse than during the liberation war — at least then we had a well-defined enemy, not the chameleon we are now countenancing .
 
The economy is in need of problem solvers not those with a track record of looting and causing mayhem with impunity. We need responsible people to govern.

The question is who are these responsible people? We start from what we know. All we know for starters is that all the contenders were Zanu PF at one time or the other.
 
The Zanu PF problem must be set aside and we must focus on the problem, not on smear campaigns on the basis of Zanu PF — a sinking ship. It’s time to abandon ship in a typhoon and we have limited options.

The key issue is that we must recognise both Simba Makoni and Morgan Tsvangirai as true and dedicated politicians who somehow emerged from the same Zanu PF monster.

It is not to be mistaken for the English adage of setting a thief to catch a thief; it is a matter of the proven good guys coming clean out of the morass — and doing their duty according to God’s wish.
 
Tsvangirai deserves a reward, so does Makoni and here we have a dicey situation and little time to solve it. This is the test of the executive mettle of these two guys — for if any majority win is only possible it must be by these guys, not severally but in solidum. Or else we may say goodbye to the presidency.

We have all the tools and what we need is the strategy. Like Garibaldi in Italy, Tsvangirai fought a long battle and deserves a hero’s recognition.

And like Camillo di Cavour, Makoni is a proven strategist and statesman with no villainy directly linked to him. A combination of such forces would have a devastating effect and rigging would be well nigh impossible.
 
Tsvangirai was placed in a pro-Zanu PF trade union in 1980, which was a strategic position for launching a viable opposition.

We can say that the time was ripe for him following developments in Zambia (Frederick Chiluba and the MMD).
 
Makoni on the other hand is a tried and tested reformer who worked from within and knows the strategies of the enemy. Makoni’s history is one of struggle from within — don’t despise him.

Let’s be careful not to throw out the baby with the bathwater.

We know President Robert Mugabe’s methods and why fall into the trap open-eyed? We all know the problem and what must be done — and Makoni and Tsvangirai must do it for our sake if they are genuine.

The complications are naked for all to see. If Makoni and Tsvangirai contest separately it would be hard to get the requisite majority and the confusion would make rigging easier with the rigger claiming that he took advantage of their confusion.

In that case, Makoni and Tsvangirai must know that they will be doomed and our woes will continue to escalate. If they unite with Makoni at the helm, then Tsvangirai will obviously be either vice president or prime minister or any such vital post, rather than running all these years without fruits.

Let us form a united front and push out the tyrant. In fact, this election will be a serious liability increasing post-election tyranny with impunity and retribution.

This will be a betrayal to the people since it shows clearly that both, or the one that opposes a united front, is not for the people because he will simply be aiding and abetting Mugabe on his eternal perch.

It is obvious that after the harmonised elections, Zanu PF will launch its usual vengeance campaign on the population like after the “No” vote in 2000 and Operation Murambatsvina and others we cannot mention.

The secret is now to unite and get all or contest separately and suffer the same fate as the Zimbabwe Unity Movement and other opposition parties before.

Mao Tse Tung, the Chinese Communist strategist, united with his bitter enemy, the Kuomintang, to remove Japanese occupation. Likewise in Kenya that was the only strategy to topple the tyrant Daniel arap Moi from his majestic perch.

We may have so many lessons and yet never learn. That omission or commission will be like a criminal act against the people of Zimbabwe.

So the idea is to settle for slightly less and get to your goal. That is these two guys’ first lesson in diplomacy. They must know that a “winner-takes-all” orientation does not work in this time and place.

You give some and take some. What you give must be dear to you — that’s what we call sacrificing — and the harvest will be good for all.
 
Let’s vote for reason and progress. All the rhetoric about colonialism and imperialism is a façade and a charade which only worsens our lot and it is all lies.

By Joe Makuch

* Joe Makuch is a Zimbabwean based in the UK.