Who will end the tension?

HARARE - It could be said without contradiction that we have witnessed our own violence: 20 000 killed in one incident alone.

There had been no official war declared between the combatants — just stupid, unaccountable fury.

In other countries, it had occurred in Parliament.

MPs, dressed in their something-hundred-dollar suits, would pull out their guns from their coat pockets and start shooting at their opponents.

Their opponents would shoot back, with equivalent accuracy.

But recently, we have been shouting at each other at conferences, calling each other nasty names, daring them to be as vulgar as we were.

What would be at stake here?

It would be the heart and soul of the ruling party, Zanu PF, seemingly ripping itself apart as its new combatants, fighting to control the party, tried to control everything in the country — the wealth, the Parliament and the resources.

The man in the middle of it all — Robert Gabriel Mugabe — is now 91 years old. He has run this country for 35 years.

So far, not even he can claim to have brought peace and quiet to the country, the majority of whose population are Catholics, as Mugabe himself.

His wife, now 50 years, has recently entered the political ring, although her language still needs some polishing.

She can be as vulgar as some of her opponents — male and female.

Many critics predict that Zimbabwe, as Catholic as it has always been — will remain as Catholic as it has always been.  

There will be doubts, though, about Mugabe’s reign.

His 35-year rule has lost some of its glamour.

Some people believe he is now less circumspect than he has been in the last 35 years.

His language is cruder and some of his supporters believe he may never be the eloquent, though, circumspect, intellect that he has always tried to be.

His rule too has become less reflective of his time than it has been in the past.

One colleague with whom he has shared many years in the trenches with Ndabaningi Sithole those many decades ago, now speaks as if he could challenge him for the leadership of their party, which Mugabe has led since ousting Sithole.

Mugabe has made a great play of being the leader of all-time.

But he must know that the years are catching up with him and there are people waiting in the wings to take over from him.

What is still uncertain here is the future of Zanu PF as the leading political light in Zimbabwe.

Since his wife, Grace entered the scene a year ago, things have gone from bad to worse for him.

He has been challenged for the leadership of the party by people who had virtually let him run the party alone, until his wife came on the political scene.

The party is now divided. In a contest for control of the party between Mugabe and a number of other leading but less brilliant lights, there is no doubt that Mugabe would face a real challenge for his leadership.

His major challenge is his age.

At 91 years of age, there is no other leader in his party who can compete with him in age.

He himself probably relies on this to virtually shut out any other challenge.

There will always be the reality that, among the young leaders, he could rely on their support, as long as they were certain of his support in their campaigns.

That would only be if he was still on his feet and could draw the support of the party the way he has done — before he turned 91.

    Comments (3)

    mugabe is willing to resign but becoz of the and kit its hard for him to resign, imagine his age and his education status he is supose to resign and go to old age home and celebrate his age its beyond grave at our generation. thanks

    moises - 21 December 2015

    mugabe is willing to resign but becoz of the and kit its hard for him to resign, imagine his age and his education status he is supose to resign and go to old age home and celebrate his age its beyond grave at our generation. thanks

    moises - 21 December 2015

    Mugabe does not want to resign He wants to die in office. meanwhile he last exercised reasonable policies a decade ago. he has had a sleeping brain since then, He expects Zw to watch his blunders and still praise his failures. a demented person

    Grace Jones - 22 December 2015

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