“What has he suddenly envisioned now at his palatial Blue Roof mansion when he spent 37 years deeply immersed in archaic policies that derailed the country’s opportunities and fortunes?”
A man’s position in history is not sealed until he is buried. This ancient Chinese saying has found resonance in recent days as former president Robert Mugabe springs out of the woodwork to rattle President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s cage.
MUCKRAKER Twitter: @MuckrakerZim
Mnangagwa has sought to market himself as a listening leader and a people’s servant. However, the pomp and fanfare that heralded his inauguration on the back of a military coup in November last year is fast wearing thin, thanks in part to his increasingly problematic foot-in-mouth inclinations.
In an interview with The Economist last week, Mnangagwa scandalously remarked that the 2008 general elections — which left more tha 200 opposition supporters dead — were “very fair”.
“It was fair, very fair. Where is the evidence for violence? Not a single case was taken to the police,” he claimed incredibly.
His remarks have unsurprisingly sparked shock and outrage. His denial has only served to reopen the wounds of the dark past when many were either maimed or killed.
The MDC-T estimates that more than 200 of its members were killed during the 2008 presidential run-off election, which was globally condemned as a sham.
After walking on corpses to “victory”, Mugabe was forced into a power-sharing government with the late MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai.
To call an election that was even criticised by the United Nations “very fair” shows not only Mnangagwa’s lack of strategic thinking, but also brings about serious questions over his definition of a free and fair election. His views on the 2008 election are pertinent given that he has repeatedly promised elections that this year’s poll will be free and fair.
It is almost as if Mnangagwa takes a perverse enjoyment in shooting himself in the foot. More than 200 innocent souls are extinguished through extrajudicial killings — and he describes the election as “very fair”.
With those utterances Mnangagwa has buttressed his critics’ argument that a leopard never changes its spots.
Behaving like a boxer who refuses to accept that he is way past his prime and basking in long-lost glory, Mugabe is allegedly the brains behind the formation of the National Patriotic Front (NPF), a new opposition party believed to be an offshoot of Zanu PF’s disgruntled G40 cabal.
Though led by former Zipra stalwart Ambrose Mutinhiri, the former first family and disgruntled ex-Zanu PF bigwigs are seemingly clawing their way back into the political fray after Mugabe’s dramatic ouster in November last year.
At 94, the old dictator mistakenly believes he can derail Mnangagwa’s ambition to legitimise himself via an election set for July this year. While Mugabe and his wife Grace have a democratic right to form an opposition political party, their sheer greed and hunger for political power is astounding.
Mugabe’s is still power drunk, even after vandalising the economy and pauperising ordinary Zimbabweans, especially during his last two decades in power.
Although he may have been unconstitutionally overthrown, the mind boggles how he seriously hopes to achieve as an opposition figure what he failed as a 37-year dictator.
After all, under his inept leadership the Zimbabwe dollar became worthless due to astronomical levels of inflation. Thanks to the doddering nonagenarian, it could take the country 25 years before the country has its own currency, according to financial experts.
What has he suddenly envisioned now at his palatial Blue Roof mansion when he spent 37 years deeply immersed in archaic policies that derailed the country’s opportunities and fortunes?
Mugabe will be remembered not too fondly as a president who spent most of time outside the country receiving treatment and dozing at trivial summits that only served to gobble up taxpayers’ money without transforming the livelihoods of the majority of citizens who live in squalor, including graduates who have been reduced to taking up menial jobs in foreign lands.
The NPF, of course, relishes the role of spoiler to ensure Mnangagwa loses to the MDC Alliance. Interestingly, Mugabe is calling for democracy and non-involvement of the army in electoral campaigns and Muckraker believes he is realising how difficult it is to be an opposition figure in this country.
He can dream of reforms that will never be implemented the same way he prevented Tsvangirai from getting into power. Mugabe can be best summarised as an author who disowns his own propaganda script after it has been stolen by competitors.
Would it not be ironic to invite Mugabe to present a paper on how to uphold democracy and hold free and fair elections?
In his time in power, he violated the tenets of democracy with impunity, impoverishing an entire nation and championing the massacre of opposition supporters. In short, Zanu PF, whether led by the military or whichever faction, has failed the people of Zimbabwe.
The factional violence bedeviling the MDC-T, which has echoes of Zanu PF’s internecine wars, casts a dark shadow on the opposition’s ability to end the ruining party’s 38-year stay in power.
MDC-T president Nelson Chamisa and vice-president Thokozani Khupe are expending their energies on intra-party strife, forgetting there is critical electoral business to tackle.
What kind of democrats are these who uphold violence as the best way of settling internal political differences? The hypocrisy is that in public they claim to respect constitutional democracy but what we see in public is the opposite.
It was Nietzsche who famously said: “He who fights with monsters should be careful lest he thereby become a monster. And if thou gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will also gaze into thee.”
Does the MDC-T embody the same traits as the monster it is wrestling? If so, then the citizens have a lot to ponder. Does it mean that if the opposition gets into power, the country risks sliding back into despotism?
Do opposition leaders understand that in a democracy there should be room for dissent? When “democrats” behave like thugs, they are emulating Zanu PF in a very dangerous manner. Unfortunately it’s a pity that those in control of the party see no evil in these barbaric acts. If the MDC-T does not return to its founding principles, this mayhem will annihilate the opposition movement.
Auxillia the celeb
Keeping up with the Kardashians is an American reality television series. The show focusses on the personal and professional lives of the Kardashian–Jenner celebrity blended family.
State broadcaster Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation has come up with its own version of the popular American series featuring First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa. Hilarious! You couldn’t make it up!
From covering “surprise” hospital visits to buying mangoes and tomatoes from roadside vendors, the ZBC coverage of Auxillia borders on voyeurism.
Former first lady Grace Mugabe aka Gucci Grace, who enjoyed widespread coverage from the captured state broadcaster during her whirlwind tours, where she should rail against real and imagined enemies, must be turning green with envy!
Is Mary the new Zim Gucci curse?
Enter Marry Chiwenga who this week showed that she also craves the limelight being hogged by Auxillia. To this end, she has now also gone on a donation spree and branded herself the Second Lady of Zimbabwe.
She has even gone on to put this ridiculous title on the letterhead of her “official” correspondence. She becomes the first wife of a vice-president to use this title, showing signs of desperate attention seeking.
Quite what vice-president Kembo Mohadi’s wife Tambudzai makes of it is anyone’s guess. Will she follow in the footsteps of Marry and call herself co-second lady of Zimbabwe? Such a mind-numbing attempt at attention seeking would be comical if it were not so tragic.