By Nomusa Garikai-
Kwapera makore mangani, takamira zvakavhimbisa?
Maiti kurima hakunetsi.
Maiti mombe munadzo.
Muchiti ngenjo munaro.
Mharidzo yenyu zviroto kanhi?
(How many more years must we have waited for what you promised?
You said you are master farmers.
You said you had the cattle.
And you said you had the plough.
Are your promises just day-dreaming?)
Thomas “Mukanya” Mapfumo in his song Maiti kurima hamubvire
Zimbabwe’s music maestro, Thomas “Mukanya” Mapfumo asked these pertinent question decades after Zimbabwe’s independent. After decades of Robert Mugabe and his Zanu PF cronies kept promising the nation mass prosperity, “Gutsa ruzhinj!” as the called it in Shona; and yet the reality on the ground was mass poverty.
It is now 41 years of Zanu PF empty promises and the economic situation is even worse; Basic services such as education and health care have all but collapsed and 49% of our people now live in abject poverty. Mukanya’s pertinent questions are more relevant and urgent now than ever!
The root cause of Zimbabwe’s economic ruin and political paralysis (the country has clearly failed to produce political leaders, either from the ruling party or the opposition, with the competence and vision to get the nation out of the man-made hell-hole the nation is stuck in) is the failure to hold free, fair and credible elections. The nation has been stuck with a corrupt, incompetent and tyrannical Zanu PF dictatorship for four decades and counting and it shows.
Instead of these Zanu PF thugs acknowledging they have failed to deliver the promised mass prosperity and therefore must now allow the nation to move on, to implement the democratic reforms necessary for free, fair and credible elections. The regime is digging in and is even more determined to hang on to power than ever before.
Zanu PF is holding its district and then provincial elections in preparation for the national elections next year. It is a dog-eat-dog for position at the top table especially now when those who get a seat feast whilst those who fail to get one starve. Of course, it is all about getting into power to feather one’s nest!
“You should not be elected to get riches, you should be elected to serve the people, and you must seek office to produce results for the best of the land, Our President Emmerson Mnangagwa has always been saying that we should work for our nation,” noted Zanu-PF secretary for external relations and former Minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi, commenting on fight for position in Manicaland Province.
“Yes, we liberated our country in 1980, but the war is still on as we also need to liberate our economy.”
Zanu PF has become a party of corrupt, incompetent vote rigging and murderous hypocrites who speak with a forked tongue, saying one thing but meaning the exact opposite.
“You should not be elected to get riches but to serve the people!” he said. Corruption is rampant in Zimbabwe and presiding over it are the Zanu PF leaders; each is lord and master of his or her own patch but always on the lookout to extent their influence and power by taking over someone else’s patch by hook or by crook whilst being fearful not to be swallowed up in turn.
Even Robert Mugabe, the party’s top dog for 37 years was not safe as the November 2017 military coup showed.
Zanu PF ended white colonial oppression but only to impose themselves as the nation’s new oppressors.
As for the economy, four decades of gross mismanagement and rampant corruption have left the nation’s once upon a time robust and booming economy in ruins!
Zimbabwe is a Banana Republic, a pariah state, ruled by corrupt, incompetent, murderous and vote rigging thugs. And as long as the nation remains a pariah state there will be no meaningful economic recovery.
Zimbabwe used to grow enough food to feed her own people with plenty left over to be the breadbasket of the region. The country is blessed with fertile land and excellent weather; and, for all intents and purposes, it is the Biblical Garden of Eden.
Yet 20 years after independence, Zanu PF seized the farms and gave them to party loyalists mostly. Zimbabwe lost its cherished breadbasket of the region laurels and today the nation is starving – a damning testimonial to Zanu PF leaders’s corruption and breathtaking incompetence.
“We have noted with concern that we have party members when it comes to (party) elections,” continued former Minister Mumbengegwi, turning to the up coming 2023 national elections.
“So far we have 3,6 million registered voters, we are targeting five million votes, so we are urging party leaders to go out there and mop up for more people to join our party. But I am very sure we are going to win the elections resoundingly, come 2023.”
There are reports of Zanu PF members buying votes or using some such vote rigging dirty tricks to win the party elections. These are nothing compared to the blatant cheating and, if need be, wanton violence the party will resort to secure election victory.
The nation had the golden opportunity during the 2008 to 2013 GNU to implement the democratic reforms designed to take away Zanu PF’s carte blanche powers to rig elections. The important task of implementing the reforms was entrusted to Morgan Tsvangirai and his MDC friends. They failed to get even one reform implemented in five years.
Mugabe bribed the MDC leaders with the trappings of high office and the rest is history, as one would say.
With not even one token reform implemented Zanu PF will rig the 2023 elections just as readily as the party has rigged all the other elections in the past. And by participating in these flawed and illegal elections the opposition are giving credibility to the flawed process and, by extension, giving the vote rigging Zanu PF regime legitimacy.
After 41 years and counting of rigged elections it is high time the nation demanded the implementation of the reforms before the elections. It is insane to allow this madness of participating in flawed elections to give Zanu PF legitimacy continue.
It is too late to stop the 2023 elections going ahead, both Zanu PF and MDC are determined to participate in the flawed elections. What we can do is make sure the election process is seen for what it is – a farce – and condemned. Zanu PF must not get legitimacy from holding another flawed and illegal election process.
“We liberated our country and now need to liberate our economy!” How ironic, since it is both the nation and the economy that need liberating from the corrupt, incompetent and tyrannical Zanu PF rule.
“Mharidzo yeZanu PF yerushungunuko zviroto!” Zanu PF’s promises of liberation and liberty are day-dreams!)