Mugabe an insensitive ruler

LONDON - President Robert Mugabe reminds me of former England national team manager Steve McClaren.

During one match on a rainy day, McClaren reached out for an umbrella while his players were soaking wet on the field.

McClaren became the object of ridicule ever since, earning himself the nickname Wally with Brolly.

McClaren’s faux paus became a defining moment for the behaviour of soccer managers.

No manager has dared touch a brolly on the touchline, no matter how heavy it rains.

One would have called Mugabe Bob with Brolly. But he is worse; as his people soak in hardships, Mugabe does not even stay in the “stadium”.

He abandons his people altogether. He would rather access exclusive medical treatment in Singapore for even something as minor as a cataract.

Mugabe is one of a number of African rulers who have sought treatment abroad. Some of them still died in foreign hospital beds.

Both the living and the dead claimed to be and still posture as dyed-in-the-wool nationalists. But nationalism that lacks faith in its own national institutions is odiously pretentious.

We lack leaders who are principled, but have rulers who are guided by self-interest.

As opposition officials said recently, Mugabe’s vote of no confidence in the local health system is an indictment on his rule.

Of course, we will be told the same thing — it is sanctions.

It is credit to Zanu PF’s propagandistic flair that it has engendered pervasive and unreflecting mimicry of this as the sole cause of Zimbabwe’s economic troubles.

Anyone in a beer hall, even without the slightest clue of its meaning or international relations dynamics, now parrots the word unthinkingly.

Jabulani Sibanda, having fallen out with Zanu PF, may not be the best reference point.

But he was right in stating that we cannot blame sanctions for some of the inadequacies we have experienced. Jacob Mudenda, very much a Zanu PF official, said the same.

What it comes down to is poor and insensitive rulership.

If it is indeed sanctions, why should an avowed nationalist abandon the “stadium” and let his people to suffer alone?

Mugabe’s spokesperson George Charamba argued Mugabe, as president, does extraordinary work that qualifies him for extraordinary services. Ordinary people also go abroad for treatment, he contended.

For starters, current conditions do not support the idea of a leader performing any extraordinary work. Zimbabwe has been in the doldrums for a long time.

And to argue that other ordinary people also go abroad to seek treatment is only to confirm the deterioration of the health delivery system under Mugabe’s watch.

He has responsibility for domestic welfare, and that includes improving health services.

The notion that Mugabe’s life is somewhat more special because he is president is, forgive the pun, sickening to the core.

This gradation in the value of human life eviscerates the nationalist rhetoric that founds itself on egalitarian equality that Zanu PF has preached.

This is the same party that has also preached about its commitment to ZimAsset, its supposed turnaround strategy.

One of its promises is to construct an ambitious 250 clinics before 2018.

Except for Zanu PF dimwits, not many people believed this would ever be accomplished in the first place.

But such goals become even more chimerical when a leader blows between $10 and $15 million in foreign travel when the country’s coffers are virtually empty.

Mugabe would rather spend the few millions of dollars to serve his personal and family medical needs than those of thousands of rural folks without clinics.

That can only be insensitive rulership.

Comments (10)

its common knowledge that when attacked with a serious sickness one looks for for specialist services for anywhere that includes foreign hospitals. How many people are coming from England to have their sickness healed by Zim prophets. Mugabe is just like any other president and if u compare him with Obama or Cameroon in terms of economic power then u are made. Zim FDI from them, they milked us as our colonizers. if u want to compare Zimbabwe, compare it with countries with the same GDP

Haile - 1 April 2015


Chris Kun - 1 April 2015

mugabe has no heart at all. thiusands of people want clinics

kim - 2 April 2015

@Haile, u r not seriois are u? U compare people who come to prphets to mugabe a president who is ruling?

mbashto - 2 April 2015

sometimes these trips to foreign hospitals dont help kana mwari ada. Honai Dr Amai varikungorwara wani

pedzi - 2 April 2015

Mugabe and his a president from HELL. NO remorse no morals. Asi Mwari vakanaka. He is sitting on the throne and showing Mugabe and his sick whore that no matter the riches you have stolen from Zimbabwe they will not heal you. If they were as patriotic as they would want us to believe why waste the little resources flying in and out of the country for medical treatment in foreign lands. They pretty know that they have destroyed the health delivery system and ordinary people are dying from curable diseases because simple medications cannot be purchased simply because there in no money. Zvino Mwari vakanaka. With all the ill gotten wealth you will never buy or add an extra day to your life. Who said cancer can be cured. Stop wasting resources and repent.

vongai - 3 April 2015

yes the economy has collapsed but some of us still have a place in our hearts for Mugabe. it may be difficult for others to understand how it can be possible but that is the reality of life. we are suffering but we love him. perhaps, one day we will be vindicated for taking such a position that may appear unpopular at the onset and would later emerge worthy in the end. my thinking is that real maturity becomes visible when one is able to see opportunities where everyone else see misery. time will tell.

taurai - 5 April 2015

The end of every struggle is freedom if history tells us the truth. Zim is not an exception and freedom to Its people shall come one day with or without Mugabe approval.

Ziziharinanyanga - 6 April 2015

The end of every struggle is freedom if history tells us the truth. Zim is not an exception and freedom to Its people shall come one day with or without Mugabe approval.

Ziziharinanyanga - 6 April 2015

Mugabe is an accomplice to all deaths in our roads

linient - 7 April 2015

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