Anger against Mugabe grows

HARARE - There is an unprecedented groundswell of anger across the political and social divides in the country against President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF’s misrule, with analysts saying yesterday that this boded well for keenly-anticipated national elections scheduled for 2018.

Among the prominent political players who have raised their voices against the country’s deteriorating political and economic climate are opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, Zapu president Dumiso Dabengwa, MKD leader Simba Makoni, United MDC leading lights Welshman Ncube and Tendai Biti, outspoken war veteran and former legislator Margaret Dongo, and former Zanu PF stalwarts such as Didymus Mutasa, Rugare Gumbo and ex-war veterans’ leader Jabulani Sibanda.

Analysts told the Daily News on Sunday yesterday that it was good that key opposition figures were increasingly speaking out against undemocratic tendencies in Zanu PF and the country.

However, they added, this did not mean that the opposition was in a position to take Mugabe and Zanu PF head-on at the moment.

Dewa Mavhinga, who is with Human Rights Watch, said while the criticism of the ruling party was good for democracy, the fact still remained that power in Zimbabwe did not reside in political parties per se and was also not secured through normal democratic processes like elections.

“Instead, those who wield political power like President Mugabe and the ruling Zanu PF party rely on State institutions including the highly-partisan and politicised leadership of the security forces.

“Therefore, although Mujuru and company may add to the number of people unhappy with Mugabe’s dictatorship, the key to seriously confronting Mugabe and Zanu PF lies in reforming security forces and other State institutions which are under Mugabe and Zanu PF’s partisan control,” he said.

He added that any grand coalition that could emerge in the country would not necessarily be effective going forward for as long as State institutions like the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission were allegedly in Mugabe’s and Zanu PF’s pocket.

“The only successful political grand coalition against Mugabe and Zanu PF is one that cuts the political umbilical cord that unites Zanu PF and the State and stops Zanu PF from getting its life-blood from the State.

“With genuinely strong, independent and democratic institutions in place, including an independent and non-partisan Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, a political grand coalition would not even be necessary as Zanu PF would naturally be history,” he said.

Mavhinga said Mugabe’s former allies, who were now disgruntled with his misrule, just like the opposition, were hamstrung by the fact that they were long-standing beneficiaries of Mugabe’s patronage and Zanu PF’s corrupt tendencies.

“This might compromise them and prevent them from joining hands with opposition forces to fight Mugabe who can easily have them stripped of all their wealth and social status overnight.

“In order to protect their ill-gotten wealth, many of these Zanu PF rejects may decide to quietly walk away from the political scene without openly challenging Mugabe in a grand coalition,” he said, citing the threats to arrest former Vice President Joice Mujuru and takeover former senior party official Ray Kaukonde’s farm as examples.

Analyst Shephered Mntungwa said it was good for Zimbabwe’s nascent democracy that leading opposition figures were speaking with one voice against Mugabe’s and Zanu PF’s misrule.

“It’s unprecedented that the opposition is speaking with one voice against misrule in the country. Zimbabweans are generally used to hearing a divided and confused opposition that is more adept at sniping against each other than pushing the ruling party.

“To that extent, the opposition can be positive going into the critical 2018 elections, particularly if one takes into account the likelihood that President Mugabe, who is the glue that holds Zanu PF together, will probably not participate in those polls,” he said.

But Kent law lecturer, Alex Magaisa, said an anti-Mugabe approach alone was not enough to unite the ousted Zanu PF cadres and opposition parties.

“This has been the approach for the last 15 years and it has not worked. Besides, everything shows that we are entering a post-Mugabe phase and therefore uniting because you are against Mugabe is by itself not enough.

“Zanu PF is busy reinventing itself but there is no traction in the opposition forces. So I am not very optimistic that there will really be a formidable force against Zanu PF. The opposition elements have to get over their often petty differences first and identify an ideological point that unites them,” Magaisa said.

Criticism of Mugabe and the ruling party has been strident over the past few months, particularly since feisty First Lady Grace Mugabe entered the political fray — amid allegations that there had effectively been a “bedroom coup” at State House, as many of her threats and pronouncements have come to pass.

In addition, Mugabe, who turns 91 in February, has fallen out with most of his trusted former liberation war colleagues, who have since criticised him and the party of liberation, particularly its controversial damp squib “elective” congress that was held in Harare earlier this month.

They have also gone on to accuse Mugabe of subverting the party’s constitution and making unilateral decisions to suit his and Grace’s interests.

Former Zanu PF secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa, for one, has described the congress as a “farce”.

“Even the most impartial observer could not fail to regard the recent Congress of the governing party, Zanu PF, as a farce,” he said.

Expelled former Zanu PF spokesperson  Gumbo described the congress as a circus that could mark the last rites of the former liberation movement.

Gumbo like former war veterans leader Jabulani Sibanda, believed Zanu PF had been hijacked by chancers.

Sibanda, like Gumbo, has since been expelled from the party, and also been incarcerated under controversial circumstances for allegedly undermining Mugabe and coining the widely popular “bedroom coup” saying.

His case is still pending at the Harare Magistrates’ Courts.

Former Home Affairs minister,  Dabengwa has also added his voice on the unsavoury goings-on in Zanu PF, asserting that he is devising a new plan to fight the ruling party.

“As Zapu, we are in discussions with the ousted Zanu PF cadres, the likes of former Vice President Joice Mujuru, Gumbo, Kaukonde, Mutasa and the engagements are on course as we try to put our heads together to prevent dictatorship because we foresee that there is the possibility of it in the party.

“The ousted cadres shouldn’t take their fate lying down,” Dabengwa was quoted in lickspittle State media yesterday.

Even outspoken former Zanu PF party legislator, Margaret Dongo, panned Mugabe and the ruling party for their misrule, alleging that the nonagenarian was in fact being abused by some party officials who harboured sinister motives.

But political analyst Pedzisayi Ruhanya criticised the opposition for not doing enough to push Mugabe and Zanu PF.

“The opposition is in comatose. Where is Tsvangirai? Where is Welshman? Where is Biti?” he asked, adding that Zanu PF could even afford to do what it was doing because there was no vibrant force challenging it.

He told the Daily News on Sunday that the MDC formations were “descending and not ascending”, adding that there was a danger that they might even sink into political oblivion.

“If Zanu PF is having problems, it does not mean Tsvangirai is gaining ground. The critical aspect is to look for long term reforms in the electoral process,” he said.

Comments (19)

When will you people learn that ZPF led by Ngwena will never allow free and fair elections in this country? So people are angry and will vote against ZPF in 2018. So what? That's what they have been doing all along? Ask yourself - who was masterminding the election thefts over the last 15 years? You think ZPF doesn't know they have lost, and will lose every election in Zim? They don't care a hoot about what everyone else thinks - they have perfected the art of rigging and/or killing people with impunity - and they will do so until the cows come home! Everybody seems so naive!

mau mau - 21 December 2014

What is there for the opposition to offer? All these people are total failures. So, Mujuru is now a saint to you because she has been declined by the people? Tell us who she will be representing if she joints hands with all those other failures such as the MDCs and Dabengwa? Come on Daily News, tell us something that will benefit us as a nation, not cheap politicking.

MemaZimbo - 21 December 2014

Mugabe has decided to take Zanu PF and Zimbabwe to be his assets.The end is near.Where are Saddam and Gadhafi? Kamuzu Banda was too busy to die.Where is he?Mwari anoona .

Abaiwa Ngaabude - 21 December 2014

Mugabe has decided to take Zanu PF and Zimbabwe to be his assets.The end is near.Where are Saddam and Gadhafi? Kamuzu Banda was too busy to die.Where is he?Mwari anoona .

Abaiwa Ngaabude - 21 December 2014

“Nascent democracy” in Zimbabwe??? Zimbabwe has never been a democracy and never will be a democracy. Is this analyst just coming from Mars? “Nascent” means just beginning to develop - for the last 35 years this country has been under one-man-with-the-military-and-thug-rule and someone calls it “nascent democracy”? Diabolical. The analyst does not know what he is talking about. It is also not true that “There is an unprecedented groundswell of anger across the political and social divides”. The anger has been there for decades just because a handful of ZanuPF parrots have been kicked out you say its unprecedented. Holding mock elections in 2018 and 2023 is a waste of time and money because ZanuPF will win by hook or by crook. ZanuPF is the permanent government. People are at the mercy of ZanuPF. People who endorsed the stupid Constitution made the situation worse. Different party experts have different interpretations of the Constitution. What we have is a Presidential-Monarch political system which is a recipe fro dictatorship. Unstable Third World countries like Zimbabwe and Africa need a system where there is a ceremonial President with the army and police reporting to him and a prime minister as head of government with fixed ONE term only.

Musona - 21 December 2014

You do not need analysts to tell you that zimbabweans are very angry about Mugabe and his party .Under a situation where there are not jobs bcoz companies are closing on daily bases , Food is scarce bocz farms have been turn into some shunt towns and places of hunting amagundwane , hospitals collapsing ,parents failing to send their children to school bcoz they have no money . Able boded citizens leaving the country to go and work in some foreign countries where they are called kwerekweres . votes are stolen by force .The whole country has been limited to vending nothing else .So this publication sees it fit to to talk to analysts to find out if we are angry with Mugabe under such overwhelming evidence . you are wasting your money in airtime phoning some incapable analysts to tell you nothing.Go to people do not be lazy ask them what they think of Mugabe and will have the true story and please try to bring the news from all corners of the country not harare harare all the times it is becoming boring .

Diibulaanyika - 21 December 2014

Too much talking we are fade up of reading these complaints stand up and fight. There will be no democracy in our in our country besides fighting for it. I think we can fight and win the cause.

d.gwitira - 21 December 2014

To include D.Mutasa, R.Gumbo and Jabulani sibanda amongst people oppossed and voicing their concerns and anger at mugabe and Zanu pf misrule is mischivious and undermining democratic and progressing forces. These three are infact serving their skins and fighting internal zanu battles that does not have national population a benefit of any nature. They want to drag everyone to be in their corner by playing cheap politicking. Democratic doors must be closed for these zanu pf rejects.

X-MAN IV - 21 December 2014

Not so long ago these Gumbos, Mutasas etc were a happy people. If Mr Mugabe today unreservedly pardoned them, they'll turn against the people and the private press including the Daily News. The same Daily News that sympathized with them. These guys remain Zanupf to the bone. You can take them out of Zanupf but you can't take it out of them. The Daily News must not give them this relevancy because they do not deserve it. In fact these guys are nothing politically, both inside and outside their evil party or cult. That is why they are tossed around and chased out with no after effects at all. Please don't give them this much credit! Hapana zviripo apa. Simple.

mosquito - 21 December 2014

Daddy inga nyika mwaparadza wani surely to an extent of Grace to be a Minister Mufungeka even a grade one child can easily see that u r only doing it to protect the so called FIRST FAMILY.Remember u dd nt actually fight fr ths country bt u were sitting in Maputo.Gamba Cde Tongo mwakauraya surely hw many zimbabweans have died thru ur hands Kurayi baba Asi chokwadi tese tichafa even u nekakadzi kenyu kekunyenama kahure

Nalsa Pasi - 21 December 2014

“The only successful political grand coalition against Mugabe and Zanu PF is one that cuts the politi-cal umbilical cord that unites Zanu PF and the State and stops Zanu PF from getting its life-blood from the State,” said Dewa Mavhinga. “With genuinely strong, independent and democratic institutions in place, including an independent and non-partisan Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, a political grand coalition would not even be nec-essary as Zanu PF would naturally be history.” Dewa is spot on there; there will never be any meaning democratic change until the democratic reforms that will effectively cut the umbilical cord of state institutions from Zanu PF. This is what MDC was supposed to do during the GNU but failed to get even one reform implemented. The greatest pressure for Zanu PF to accept change is coming from the economic melt-down; many of the opportunistic opposition are jumping on to this bandwagon.

Wilbert Mukori - 22 December 2014

Mugabe must just go! Of all the non performing government he is the worst. As the so called head honcho the buck stops with him. Mugabe must just go! Full stop! End of story!

Righteous Justice - 22 December 2014

This is shocking to say the least. If President Mugabe can fire 16 elected Ministers (these are MPs), is not liked by them and their supporters across the country, is not liked by 9 provincial chairpersons, their councils and their supporters across the country, Zimbabweans who vote the opposition anyway and those who have chosen to migrate; who still supports him? Are these people supporting him for real or its just for food and drink? Something doesn't add up here. We hear of conspiracy theories of 'moles' who want Him out from such critical national functions across the country from the police force, army, war veterans, the academia etc. My question is: Who then still want the President?

Musharuka - 22 December 2014

These quarrels from the leadership does not bring food on the table to the ordinary citizens of Zimbabwe . People are tired,need a change. God help Zimbabwe.

Jackson Munyenyiwa - 22 December 2014

He is taking tha party as his own. Telling those so called ministers what he wants from his wife. We only want him and his Ministertes to go . Be it a baboon or a monkey on the presidential seat we dont care ngatitambure paine dzimwe pfungwa.

Spear - 22 December 2014

Of Degrees in Violence, Degrees of Failure, Fake Phds and senseless tired oratory about the armed struggle. The university of Zimbabwe has long lost its international reputation, it has been indiginized i guess.

tongesai - 22 December 2014

Musharuka, HE himself told us that 73% of voters in 2008 did not like him and that he actually does not like ZPF! On 31 December 2014 I bet the only person that likes HE is himself????

Okech - 22 December 2014

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flixcom solutions - 23 December 2014

Why does Mugabe behaviour like some medieval king? Because he can....... And we are no more than cowardly mediaeval serfs.

Jojo - 26 December 2014

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