Bob, Grace — Perfect match

HARARE - Nobody has actually called them the perfect couple — at least not in my hearing.

They have been married for a while.

The vast difference in age makes it a little wild to paste that monicker on them.

There have been upheavals, but nothing sensational enough to suggest a break-up.

The difference in age is quite sensational — 40 something years. But this is the 21st century.

We should all grow up!

What is at stake is really the political dividend here.

Are Bob and Grace willing to let their marriage be tested on the political arena of a country on the verge of a climax of some sort?

Grace has been more than outspoken in her political speeches. She is by no means a seasoned politician.

The few speeches she has made have alarmed many people — not with their expertise or erudition. Where is the subtlety in her delivery?

Where is the smooth carriage and the last-minute bite?

But above all that is this question: is Zimbabwe ready for Grace Mugabe to become president? Why, for heaven’s sake, would this country, for which perhaps 60 000 lives were sacrificed, be allowed to be led in the name of a woman in her early 50s?

Earlier, I had mentioned in passing that I had compared Grace Marufu with Imelda Marcos, the wife of the former Philippines dictator, Ferdinand Marcos.

He was overthrown by his own people, everybody knows why today.

I met both in Manila, where I was attending a conference of Afro-Asian writers in 1975.

I was a delegate from Zambia, from which country I had become a member of the Afro-Asian writers’ group.

Ferdinand Marcos had no record as a recognised democrat.

He loved to be entirely in charge of a country, as President Robert Mugabe and many other followers of Kwame Nkrumah preferred.

As far as I know, Marcos and Mugabe did not share ideologies, except that, in their overall philosophy of political ideology, they preferred to have the last word.

There have been many African leaders of a similar political lineage since 1957.

Most of them have been overthrown and killed by their soldiers.

Those who have escaped death and fled to foreign countries have eventually died in sickness, not mourned by their people back home.

None of them have returned to reclaim their presidency.

The pattern continues to this day, in the 21st century.

The cause is nothing to wonder about.

Most of our countries have still not accepted completely the concept that democracy must include the participation of all the people.

One of our serious handicaps to a change in the concept of democracy is the 35 years in which one man has run the roost, almost single-handedly.

Let‘s remember that the experiment of a coalition government was a total disaster.

The failure to transform the economy into something as sensationally independent as it was before UDI was a lesson from which we still have to learn seriously.

Corruption has blighted Zimbabwe to the extent that there will be required lessons of the leadership in future on an entirely new concept of true democracy.

The truth is that only lip service has been paid to democracy so far.

Is it true that the president owes one politician $30 million?

Even at the highest level, the fight against corruption has not been tackled with the vigour called for.

Whether Bob and Grace would be part of the new team remains to be seen.

They have to shape up or ship out.

Comments (1)

For how long are we to endure this angry and painful happiness?

brighten muvindi - 29 September 2015

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