By Wilbert Mukori| “In 2009, the late former president Robert Mugabe was forced into forming a GNU with the MDC’s late and much loved founding father, Morgan Tsvangirai, after the hotly disputed 2008 polls,” reported Daily News.
“The short-lived GNU was credited with stabilising the country’s economy which had imploded in the run-up to those elections.”
This is the kind of foolish narrative that one has often heard from the corrupt and incompetent MDC leaders and their apologists. The primary purpose of the 2008 to 2013 GNU was not, I repeat, was NOT to “stabilise the country’s economy which had imploded in the run-up to the 2008 elections!”
The international community including SADC and AU refused to accept Zimbabwe’s 2008 elections as free and fair and to recognise Zanu PF’s claim as the legitimate government given the blatant cheating and wanton violence by Zanu PF. In the 2008 Global Political Agreement (GPA) signed by Robert Mugabe on behalf Zanu PF, by Morgan Tsvangirai on behalf of MDC-T and Arthur Mutambara on behalf of the smaller MDC faction and by President Thabo Mbeki of SA on behalf of SADC as the guarantor; it was agreed the three Zimbabwean parties would form a Government of National Unity (GNU).
The primary purpose of the 2008 to 2013 GNU was to implement the raft of democratic reforms agreed in the GPA and to draft a new democratic constitution for Zimbabwe and to oversee the holding of fresh free, fair and credible elections. The primary purpose of the GNU was not make sure the next elections will NOT be a repeat of the the 2008 elections.
Indeed, the Daily News reporter agree with the above analysis because he/she agrees the 2008 elections were not free and fair.
“In those polls (2008), Tsvangirai beat Mugabe hands down. However, the results were withheld for six long weeks by stunned authorities – amid widespread allegations of ballot tampering and fraud, which were later revealed by former bigwigs of the ruling Zanu-PF,” continued the Daily News report.
“In the ensuing sham presidential run-off, which authorities claimed was needed to determine the winner, Zanu-PF apparatchiks engaged in an orgy of violence in which hundreds of Tsvangirai’s supporters were killed – forcing the former prime minister to withdraw from the discredited race altogether.
“Mugabe went on to stand in an embarrassing and widely condemned one-man race in which he declared himself the winner.”
Sadly for Zimbabwe, Morgan Tsvangirai and his MDC friends failed to implement even one meaningful democratic reforms in five years of the GNU. Not even one reform!
Mugabe bribed the MDC leaders with the trappings of high office, ministerial limos, very generous salaries, a US$ 4 million mansion for Tsvangirai, etc., etc. With their snouts in the feeding trough, the MDC leaders forgot about the reforms. They did not want to up set Mugabe after all the generosity he had shown them.
“Mazivanhu eMDC adzidza kudya anyerere!” (MDC leaders are enjoying the gravy train good-life, they will not rock the boat!) Zanu PF cronies boasted when asked why MDC were not implementing the reforms.
SADC leaders tried to have the up coming July 2013 Zimbabwe elections postponed until the democratic reforms could be implemented – further proof the GNU was about implementing reforms and not “stabilising the economy”!
“In 2013 the Maputo Summit, in June 2013, before the elections, the Maputo Summit was all about having the elections postponed – the SADC summit. I went there,” Dr Ibbo Mandaza told Journalist Violet Gonda.
“I was there at the Summit and Mugabe pretended to agree to a postponement of the elections. If you recall, the postponement was based on the need to reform at least electoral laws.
“And after that Summit, Morgan Tsvangirai, Tendai Biti, Welshman Ncube, all of them were called to a separate meeting by the Heads of State of SADC in the absence of Mugabe, that same evening. And they were told; I was sitting there outside the room with Mac Maharaj; they were told ‘if you go into elections next month, you are going to lose; the elections are done’.”
Tsvangirai et all ignored the SADC leaders’ advice just as they had ignored the advice to implement the reforms through out the five years of the GNU.
Morgan Tsvangirai, his MDC friends and their apologists have peddled the false narrative that the primary purpose of the 2008 to 2013 GNU was to stabilise the Zimbabwe economy because they did not want to admit they had sold out and failed to implement even one democratic reform.
If MDC leaders had implemented the democratic reforms the 2013 and all elections since would have been free, fair and credible. If Zimbabwe did not have a competent government then at least it would have one that is democratically accountable to the people – a good start. Instead the country is still stuck with the corrupt and tyrannical de facto one-party dictatorship and the vote rigging Zanu PF regime.
The Daily News report’s primary purpose was to promote an new Zanu PF and MDC GNU; “many Zimbabweans have welcomed the push by the MDC to hold talks with Mnangagwa and Zanu-PF, with a view to forming a new GNU, in a bid to end the country’s myriad challenges.”
If the “myriad of challenges” the new GNU is to address are economic then the proposed Zanu PF and MDC GNU is will fit the bill. If the “myriad of challenges” include implementing democratic reforms designed to end the curse of rigged elections then another Zanu PF and MDC GNU is a waste of time. If the two parties failed to implement even one meaningful reform; which, I repeat, was the primary purpose of the 2008 GNU; it is naive to believe they will do so now.
Zanu PF will never ever reform itself out of office. The party must step down to create the political space for the appointment of an interim administration that will implement the reforms and clear the path for the holding of the country’s first free, fair and credible elections.
Zanu PF has rigged elections ever since the 1980 elections. The party rigged the July 2018 elections, the regime is illegitimate and must step down. It is an outrage that Zanu PF has held this nation to ransom for 40 years now and it is insane to allow this to continue for one more day, especially now with the country’s very stability and survival on the line!