Impunity on your doorstep

HARARE - There are countries where, on occasions of impending crisis, one citizen, with the perceptive capacity of a true prophet, proposes a solution the leadership immediately grasp as the ideal panacea.

These are rare occasions. In any case, unless the leaders themselves are amenable to debate, there may be no opportunity for compromise.

The die is cast and tragedy overtakes the country like a whirlwind.

Zimbabwe may be facing this dire prospect. At the time of writing, Joice Mujuru, still officially Vice-President, was still free.

There were people eager to have her locked up. Others were anxious to know if justice could be available to her, under any circumstances.

The situation pointed to the beginning of the era of impunity, threatened for quite a while by the rulers.

Joice is the widow of Solomon Mujuru, aka Rex Nhongo, a man unlikely to be forgotten by the country in connection with the war of liberation.

This hero of the struggle died a horrific death in an inferno at his farm outside Harare. Few citizens believed  he had committed suicide.

That would amount to the same as suggesting that Josiah Magama Tongogara, Mujuru’s immediate superior during the war of liberation, had done himself in too.

Few people have remained free once their names had been linked publicly to a plot to assassinate a head of state.

Most people in Zimbabwe are keenly aware that there is something darkly odd about the public accusation against Joice, that she plotted to assassinate Mugabe. At the time of writing, there had been speculation that her arrest seemed imminent — as it had been for days previously.

It had been imminent for a while, mostly as reported in the state media, whose hacks are not famous for regarding the facts of a story as sacred.

Mujuru insisted she would not give up her job in the government or in Zanu PF, as was being demanded by her detractors, including the war veterans’ movement, whose leader, Jabulani  Sibanda, was recently removed for publicly backing Joyce Mujuru’s position.

Even people who remain neutral in this seamy saga of political intrigue in Zanu PF insist Joice ought to be accorded the benefit of the doubt.

What most people find heavily intriguing is that she has not been the object of a vote of no confidence in her party. Most of her allies have suffered humiliation in this exact manner.

It is clear that nothing of the sort is likely to be engineered against her, for the logical reason that she is no small fry. Even Mugabe must be aware that such a gambit might backfire.

There is also the reality that Rex Nhongo was no nonentity. In the ranks of the Zanla forces during the war, only Magama outranked him.

Zanu PF is now in deep crisis. There are those, though, who like to believe this is no more serious than any other internal squabble they have confronted in the past.

What may be missing is an understanding of the crisis among some leaders.

Zimbabwe is sliding fast into deeper political and economic squalor. The Mugabe regime has run out of money to run the country.

The policy of impunity could strike the final nail into Zanu PF’s coffin. Some neutrals would say the party hugely deserved this punishment.

The world has watched Mugabe challenge it to stop him from whatever he wished, responding to them with his notorious “You can go to hell!” rejoinder.

This time, he might find the heat in hell unbearable.

    Comments (1)

    This old man Bill SAIDI, of Malawian ancestry has lost touch with reality, probably because you spent most of your time trying to prop up the now defunct chematama and mdct. Since 2000 YOU HAVE BEEN HALLUCINATING ABOUT THE DEATH OF zanu pf, and yet nothing has happened, but instead your horse chematama awaits the tombstone now. Surprisingly, you are now describing Solomon Mujuru as a hero of the struggle and yet its only a few years down the line, you were demonising everything about ZANU PF. nO MR said, why don't you go and start fishing in lake Malawi, maybe your family may getting something of value. Irrelevance is your totem now.

    reason - 21 November 2014

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