This is no way to run a country

HARARE - There was an assassination at the Kremlin in Moscow the other day.

The victim was a prominent critic of Vladimir Putin, the former KGB boss, now running the Russian federation.

Nobody came out to announce publicly who had committed the dastardly deed.

Incidentally, the Kremlin murder occurred around the same time that a young Zimbabwean critic of the current Communist-leaning regime was being kidnapped from a barber shop in a high-density suburb of Harare.

At the time of writing, Itai Dzamara, a Zimbabwean critic of the government, had not been found.

It was generally assumed that the kidnappers were agents of the present government of President Robert Mugabe, himself a self-proclaimed Marxist-Leninist from way back.

At the time of writing, his government had vowed to search everywhere for the missing man.

His “crime” was apparently to stage a series of public demonstrations at a public place in the centre of Harare, in protest at the manner in which Mugabe has run the country for the last 35 years.

The immediate speculation by all observers and analysts was that nobody would find him — alive, anyway.

In the past, people kidnapped in this manner and during times of elections or other such events had never been found alive.

It has thus been assumed that critics of the government who have made no secret of their anti-government sentiments have invariably disappeared without trace.

Mugabe’s general political style has been fashioned along the Marxist-Leninist line, with very little sympathy for any opposition parties.

It was only in 2000 that a new party founded by a trade unionist, Morgan Tsvangirai, came within a whisker of unseating Zanu PF, which has run the country since independence from the British in 1980.

It was a humiliation for Mugabe to agree to a coalition with Tsvangirai’s party, which had enough seats to deserve such a privilege.

Mugabe’s party had paid the price of a complacent kind of governance, in which the majority of the population were left with little for which to thank Mugabe’s party.

Then there was the deep-rooted extent of corruption that most people just felt “someone else” might offer them a better life.

Today, Mugabe’s party is almost in tatters, riven with factionalism, corruption and a tendency to side with any group that offers people an opportunity to make a fortune.

There is now such a depth and widespread disenchantment with Zanu PF that most voters will pin their hopes in any election on the opposition — which is making attempts to unite its disparate factions into one solid block.

One cause of disapproval for Mugabe’s party must relate to the recent entry into politics of his young wife, Grace, whose campaign to purge the leadership has led to disastrous desertions from the party.

But above all else is the person of Mugabe himself.

At the age of 91, he is hardly in a position to lead a party into an election in which its chances of winning a majority have been reduced by splits and an economic policy that has nearly bankrupted the country. 

Tsvangirai’s MDC sees an opportunity to repeat its remarkable performance in the 2000 parliamentary polls, where it won 57 seats in its maiden run in the polls.

With Zanu PF hardly united as a party, the MDC’s chances seem extremely bright.

What might improve the chances for the entire opposition brigade is a party united in some tangible way, able to isolate Zanu PF.

    Comments (4)


    fire links - 20 March 2015


    fire links - 20 March 2015

    Zanu PF is now unelectable it was only because Tsvangirai and his fellow MDC village idiots failed to get even one of the raft of reforms agreed in the GPA implemented that Mugabe was able to blatantly rig the elections to stay in power. Implement the reforms and Zanu PF will not win the elections. The economic meltdown is piling the pressure on Mugabe to accept reforms. The pressure will be maintained until he does accept reforms!

    wilbert Mukori - 23 March 2015

    You don't get it right Wilbert. There is no easy walk to freedom my friend. Do you know that power corrupts. Remember fighting a corrupt system is no easy task. lf we had a 100 ltai Dzamaras hopefully you being one of them, the reforms you talk about will not only be for Tsvangirai and his lot bt for the oppressed. Take it easy bro and read between the lines

    wonder - 25 March 2015

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