I HAVE read that a government “is the system by which a state or community is governed”.
By Tanonoka Joseph Whande
I, of course, am not satisfied with that for the simple reason that, for more than three decades in our country, there has never been a system by which we were governed.
Clearly, it has transpired that what our president and his wife talk or dream about in their bedroom becomes law. It is not acceptable that a president lives outside the confines of the law of which he is the chief custodian and implementer.
His attitude towards upholding the rule of law permeated our parliament and judiciary to the extent that all three branches of the state system take turns to break our laws with none being punished for it.
President Robert Mugabe’s best weapons have remained the same since he got into power 34 years ago; that is patience and using greed as bait.
Mugabe recognised the power that is generated by greed and he tapped into that.
That is why, to this day, he remains the last man standing.
Greed, my compatriots, is more than a cancer. It is as much a controlling entity as force of arms, only worse because greed is a self-centered urge to ignore all else for personal gain. Greedy people grab and amass more than what they need because they are not conditioned with a sense of sharing or fairness.
Their mission is to grab it all. Even if they do not need it, they must still own it. A government more narrowly refers to the particular executive in control of a state at a given time and we have three branches of our government outdoing each other in abuse of the law and the people.
For more than three decades, we have watched in horror as all three branches of our government conspired against the people and delivered the total opposite of the minimums of what citizens expected from their leaders.
A presidential birthday was recently celebrated at a cost of millions of dollars that our nation could not afford.
More million-dollar celebrations are in line to be held around the country for no one’s benefit.
Our hungry citizens were, as usual, forced one way or the other to cough up millions to celebrate a wedding for Grace Mugabe’s daughter, Bona. Why this became a national, let alone international, issue is only for the devils in hell to explain.
Meanwhile, some of our citizens in Masvingo and Tsholotsho still remain stranded after some devastating flooding disaster.
Neither Mugabe, daughter nor wife gave so much as a token concern for our citizens who are now reported to be starving in the make shift camps at which they are currently residing.
Bed bugs bite and they want our blood.
Is it not sad and abominable that Mugabe is sucking more blood out of us than the colonialists did?
Zvimbwasungata ndivanani zvino? (Who then is now the puppet?) Our government, headed by Mugabe, has done everything that nations do not do.
We have removed property rights.
We have taken away human rights.
We have destroyed a healthy economy and abused our own citizens until some countries said enough was enough.
Mugabe, with nothing to lose except shopping sprees in western countries, came up with the “look east” policy in which China was the centre piece. He thumbed his nose at those who had barred him from shopping in their countries.
At the end of 2009, China held US$2,4 trillion worth of foreign exchange, which, at the time, was “the largest amount of foreign exchange owned by any central bank in the world” and this “did not even reflect the reserves held by China’s major commercial banks’’.
And, according to Reuters, in the first six months of 2012, Chinese foreign direct investments in the United States hit US$59,1 billion, making China “the largest recipient of foreign direct investment and topping the United States which had $57,4 billion of FDI”. In 2013, Chinese investment in the United States doubled.
Mugabe, although claiming to have studied economics, has always been completely blind to world economic models and policies.
Even China, Mugabe’s last line of defence, has reversed its alleged pledge from last November to give Zimbabwe US$10 billion in loans and grants.
They fail to even craft laws that encourage investment in our country, always rushing to grab what is not theirs. This, clearly, is voodoo economics, like someone once said.
Zimbabwe is US$11 billion in arrears yet Mugabe can afford to insult possible benefactors by splurging millions on birthday and wedding celebrations at the expense of the nation.
The Chinese are not stupid.
Mugabe is looking east while the Chinese are looking west.
I found it telling that the Chinese, with whom Mugabe has aligned himself, last week refused to give Mugabe financial assistance while the British, against whom Mugabe has been ranting and raving for decades, last month gave Mugabe money for stranded primary school children.
The heart of the matter is that this government must resign. They are incompetent, greedy and have absolutely no clue about what to do. Zimbabwe is in free fall and is virtually stranded without a government. No one seems to be paying attention to what needs to be done as all are busy doing nothing but stealing from the state.
It has never been clearer than now that we effectively do not have a government.
The slowly unfolding corruption drama at all our parastatals is an indication of the government negligence over decades. More rot should be expected even from private companies that struggle to stay alive in Zimbabwe.
But the menace of corruption is a direct product of a misguided government; a government dangerously propped up by patronage not meritocracy and competence.
It is sad that those in government do not seem to know what to do about the rapidly deteriorating situation in the country, making us wonder what will become of our country.
Because of Mugabe and his Zanu PF our country has missed countless opportunities to dig itself out of the mess into which they led us.
We continue on a senseless path of destruction while those around us are quietly working on improving their nations.
Look at Mozambique, Zambia and Rwanda. Yet all our government does is to continue spending on themselves money they do not have and, at the same time, neglecting the people and harassing those who might want to invest in our country.
This government should step down.
No cabinet reshuffle necessary; the government itself must just resign. We cannot be so careless with a nation that hungers to succeed as much as ours yet have those who are supposed to lead doing nothing to save the situation.
What Mugabe and his people have done to Zimbabwe is enough for them to be tried for treason. I have never seen so many people work for so long to destroy a nation.
Sooner or later, the people of Zimbabwe will need to decide what next is to be done because the big crash is approaching fast. Mugabe and his people are doing all this because we let them.
Zimbabwe has too much potential in both human terms and natural riches to be left in the hands of thieves. Zimbabwe deserves better and the people have the answer.
Tanonoka Joseph Hwande is a journalist and he writes in his personal capacity.