Elections now without delay

THERE is no better way to resolve conflict between political parties aspiring to be in government than through elections where a population chooses people freely to represent them. Zimbabwe is ready for elections even before the end of the year. If an election was held in a highly-charged environment in Rhodesia in May 1979 and less than a year later in February 1980 then I don’t see why another election cannot be held in 2011.

The election in 1980 worked wonders because in a matter of days there was peace. There was no need for peacekeepers, electoral or media reforms. The elections were held with the Rhodesian police and army present while Zanu and Zapu externally based members were coming to assembly points.
Even war-ravaged Afghanistan had an election a few months ago and so why can’t we have an election in Zimbabwe?

There is nothing sober about Arthur Mutambara’s stance on elections. His stance is no more than a self-preservation exercise. He dreams of some peacekeeping force and something called national healing –– whatever that is. There will not be any peacekeeping force because Zanu PF will never agree to that. Everyone goes on about national healing –– what animal is that? What exactly is national healing? People have to be real here –– Zimbabwean society is deeply divided into two irreconcilable, disparate camps, the untouchable “comrades” and non-“comrades”. It is like oil and water.

This is why the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act (Zidera) sanctions should remain in force until there are free and fair elections. At the moment we have got a dysfunctional so-called inclusive government which is going nowhere fast.

Let’s get the elections out of the way first and then the victors can concentrate on economic recovery when Zidera sanctions are then lifted.

Time is of the essence here. The longer it takes to have an election the worse the situation will be because Robert Mugabe and his acolytes will continue to institute ruinous economic policies, unilaterally appointing cronies to important posts to serve Zanu PF interests and the only way to stop them is to oust them forthwith in an election. As things stand it doesn’t look like there will be a full economic recovery because all donors are reluctant to pour in money as long as Zanu PF is part of government.