HomeCommentGumbo fallout: Case of giving a dog bad name

Gumbo fallout: Case of giving a dog bad name

“Gumbo is a murderous pathological liar,” the Sunday Mail declared last weekend.

Twitter: @MuckrakerZim

Expelled Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo was branded a “coup plotter” by the state-controlled Sunday Mail after his hard-hitting interview with this newspaper.

The story, which was not well-source but clearly crafted as a reaction to our interview, was obviously defamatory nonsense tailored for Zanu PF’s less discerning followers, a case of giving a dog a bad name and beating it.

What we in the media should be concerned with is not simply the ugly campaign the party has embarked on to maintain existing power structures, but the way in which the state has wheeled out its crude and naive propagandists to lay down an increasingly stale line to combat critics of President Robert Mugabe’s regime .

We see here our television screens invaded by ignorant and at times plain silly commentators who think they can set the agenda with their daft opinions. These are the real weevils in public opinion.

And it is actually possible to feel sorry for some of these bootlickers as they do their best to please their masters.

This doesn’t bode well for Zimbabwe’s future. “If you want a vision of the future (in Zimbabwe), imagine a boot stamping on a human face,” George Orwell would say. Truth is Gumbo is a liberation struggle veteran and a brave politician. That’s why Mugabe and his puppets hate him.


Imagine poor old Didymus Mutasa, with a lifetime of servility behind him, being linked to an obviously fictitious plot to end Mugabe’s endless grip on power through an assassination.

Meanwhile, Joice Mujuru is, we are told, linked to a plot to topple Mugabe’s moth-eaten rule via witch doctors and political execution.

Really? Does Mugabe seriously believe these dim-witted cock and bull stories? The problem with these conspiracies is that they discredit their owners. And have you noticed the wave of indifference that has swept across the nation in response to these kindergarten claims, not to mention First Lady Grace Mugabe’s underwhelming contribution to our national struggle.

Gumbo, it seems, knows what he is doing. After all, he got in to Mozambique while Mugabe was cooling his heels hanging around looking for an invitation. Edgar Tekere’s book, A Llifetime of Struggle, documents this rather interesting episode.

It is said of Gumbo (by the Sunday Mail) that he had “a tempestuous relationship with leading lights of the liberation struggle”.

Few were “murderous” unless you buy the Chitepo report? But “nearly derailing the struggle” as a false opinion or accusation is hardly a capital offence

But anyway should newspapers attack their handlers’ rivals with venom but without thought or responsibility as the Sunday Mail has been doing? And it must be asked, can they not think for themselves? Do they always need the intervention of a government minister to get by?

Gushungo syndrome

Now that bootlickers in Zanu PF, obviously doing everything to perpetuate their looting spree, have decide to name a road after Grace. Why can’t they just extend the honour to Mugabe kith and kin to fully cement and prolong his grip on power?

From Gushungo jingles to Gushungo Victory Cup, won’t it be more interesting within Zanu PF’s hierarchy for the likes of Information minister Jonathan Moyo, Patrick Zhuwao (Mugabe’s nephew and agent of dynastic politics), Environment minister Saviour Kasukuwere and Gender minister Oppah Muchinguri to work tirelessly and come up with other names to reinforce the political dynasty such as “Bona Mugabe’s Academy of Economics”, “Robert Jnr’s Higher Institute of Tyranny” and “Chatunga College of Rigging”.

That sums up the real Mugabe regime, whose dictatorship is being cheered by power-hungry but cowardly opportunists. His legacy of misrule and poverty will last generations. This “Gushungo Syndrome” is just sickening.

Superior brand

It is shocking that a nonentity in the history of Zimbabwe such as Grace Ntombizodwa Mugabe has become a superior brand, surpassing those who deserve recognition — the real liberators of this country.

She has become worth more than the president himself after reaping where she did not sow.

Her success is simply derived from the fact that she is Mugabe’s wife, and nothing else. Even those propelling her to those scaring heights are dishonest — they are doing it out of fear, greed and selfishness. Let the emerging “iron lady” sail, but will she survive the violent storms associated with Zimbabwean politics?


Heavyweights aligned to Mujuru continue to fall by the wayside, all being accused of plotting to kill Mugabe.

One wonders who really was loyal to Mugabe considering that all those sacked appeared to be his close lieutenants.

Zanu PF chairperson Khaya Moyo and Sydney Sekeramayi are other top officials demanded by war vets to be axed.

While Mugabe is being influenced to carry out this mass exorcism, he should be reminded that he is being surrounded by cowards who are failing to openly tell him to step down while they are in fact not loyal to his rule at all.

Mugabe seems to have forgotten that these are the same architects of the Tsholotsho Declaration.

Let the purges continue — the collapse of Zanu PF was long overdue considering it has been the source of people’s suffering. If opposition parties resurrect from their political graves, the long suffering citizens can begin to expect change.

Same old trick

Opposing Mugabe’s regime is equally matched with baton sticks, imprisonment and torture, history has always shown.

The same fate has befallen former war veterans’ leader Jabulani Sibanda who described Grace’s antics against Vice-President Joice Mujuru during her “meet-the-people” rallies last month as a “bedroom coup”.

Mugabe uses the same trick when his throne is under threat and it’s not shocking if Sibanda is charged with treason. Mujuru, Sibanda and others must learn from this. But why is the Zanu PF government not arresting all those accused of plotting to topple Mugabe instead of one person?

We should be seeing political prisoners surging in numbers if Sibanda’s call to block Grace’s ascendency to become the party’s Women’s League secretary was a criminal offence.

Remember the former war veterans’ leader addressed a gathering of Zanu PF officials; shouldn’t they as well be incarcerated for attending an illegal meeting?

It’s only Mugabe’s desperate attempt to thwart the succession debate — that much is clear.

His regime focuses on trivial issues while Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa in his budget presentation last week indicated that 4 610 firms had closed, while 55 440 jobs were lost since 2011.

That must inform Mugabe to accept calls for him to step down than to continuously run down the already battered economy.

Mujuru must seriously consider forging an alliance with opposition parties

President Robert Mugabe finally disclosed he was aware of Vice-President Joice Mujuru’s plans to dislodge him from the presidency. He told service chiefs and war veterans leaders and the Zanu PF central committee that Mujuru was not even interested in having elections held last year, claiming there was a sinister plot to forge an alliance with the MDC-T to take over the reins of leadership.

Wasn’t Mujuru, Tsvangirai and their allies correct in wanting to maintain the Government of National Unity (GNU) that brought relief to suffering citizens who had gone for so long without bread, sugar, mealie-meal, among other basic commodities? Is it not because of the GNU that the economy was stabilised and government managed to contain the crippling effects of hyperinflation that had eroded the value of the local currency?

And is it not because of the Zanu PF-MDC alliance that schools re-opened and lessons resumed to the benefit of many children who were being despised their basic right — education? It is only just over a year after Zanu-PF’s resounding victory that the nation is back again in an economic mess, characterised by factional fighting in the ruling party, which serves no purpose except casting a dark cloud over the nation’s future.

The so-called war veterans are failing to realise some of their cadres have decided to ship out after realising Mugabe only wants them when he needs to consolidate his power against perceived enemies.

Mujuru should be fearless and fulfil Mugabe’s dream. She must consider forging an alliance with the opposition to form a formidable force to challenge his rule in 2018.

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