Saturday, 31 May 2008


Fear is and has always been the corner stone in Robert Mugabe’s rise to power and retaining it.

The fight to end white colonial exploitation and oppression of the blacks was a just cause to which black Zimbabweans right across the nation understood. They lived the injustice of white discrimination and exploitation everyday. Blacks did not fall over themselves to join the various Black Nationalist parties such as Zapu, Zanu, ANC, etc that mushroomed to opposite white rule. Many of those who did, it was with a heavy heart. Because it was blatantly clear the Black Nationalist leaders only paid lip service to common cause of ending white colonial injustice, their real passion was for them to replace the whites as the new masters!

The likes of Robert Mugabe understood well enough that granting the populous their individual human rights and freedoms would serious curtail his ambitious of being the new master and exercise of absolute power. And so, nationally he never ever intended to grant anyone including even those within the leadership of his party, Zanu PF, any fundamental rights or freedoms.

Some people have expressed their surprise and disappointment on how outstanding individuals like the late Bernard Chidzero had let themselves sucked into working for a brutal and ruthless dictator like Mugabe for years and even became a key player in the dictatorship! People like Chidzero have enjoyed commanding positions in society as Ministers, Governors, Mayors, etc. for decades; these are the benefits of the dictatorship but on the negative side they are all as powerless as a old woman when it comes to trying to change the set path of the dictatorship.

It was the promise of a share in the loot that kept political parties like Zanu PF together and the membership blindly loyal to ruthless dictators like Robert Mugabe. As for the general public it was another matter.

The general public had the hopes and aspirations of ending white colonial rule and creating a new political dispensation in which they too enjoy the same freedom, rights, peace and a just share in the nation’s wealth denied them thus far by the white colonial masters. The public were hostile to the Black Nationalists’ selfish agenda of ending oppressive white colonial rule only to have it replaced by an equally repressive new black ruling elite as had happened in so many other African countries after their independence.

Black Nationalists realised they needed wider public support to end white colonial rule. They could get free and unfretted public support if they ditched their self-serving agenda and embraces the common cause. The price of choosing this course was obvious enough; their own hold on power would be tenuous, a far cry from the absolute power they sort. It was a “bridge to far” for a self servicing mercenary like Robert Mugabe who have never cared about the rights, freedoms, sufferings and not even human lives of others – not even of his own fellow Zimbabweans. Mugabe coerced the public into supporting him and his ruling party.

The people’s fear of what Mugabe and Zanu PF would do to them if they are ever found wanting in their support of the dictator is the simple explanation behind Mugabe’s struggle hold on Zimbabwe political power and contradictions his failed leadership throws.

Mugabe has cultivated within the party’s rank and file a ruthless strike of party faithful whose blind devotion to him and his dictatorial rule is comparable to Germany’s SS’s devotion to Adolf Hitler. It is these- the Youth and Woman’s League Members and Fifth Brigade in the 1980s and now the War Veterans and the Green Bombers- Mugabe’s foot soldiers, who are carried the responsibility of mass intimidation, torture and murder of Mugabe’s critics and opponents. They have executed the nationalists demagogue ethos of “Those not with us are against us!” even when their own personal interests are directly harmed by their actions.

To backup the foot-soldiers is multitude low rank Police Officers, Civil Servants and ordinary citizens who have played their part in propping up the Mugabe dictatorship. They understood well enough the injustice of the dictatorship and were acutely aware of the great price the nation has paid in terms of economic melt down and the human suffering and despair it caused. They have directly or otherwise supported the dictatorship for fear they will lose they little they have or worse if they challenged the system.

There are the few, the chosen few; the Ministers, the Augustine Chihuris of this world who can rightly say they had a cut in the loot of the dictatorship. They are defending the status quo because they stand to lose the ministerial car, the former white commercial farm they now occupy, etc.

The Mugabe dictatorship has produced two distinct classes in Zimbabwe: the politically and economically empowered ruling elite with Mugabe as the top dog, his cronies within the party and government and their families, friends and all manner of hangers-on. Soon after independence they numbered in their hundreds of thousands, the country was rich and those at the top were not so greedy so the loot reached far and wide. As the national wealth started to shrink, like a dying camp-fire, many found themselves left out in the cold. Today there are only a few hundred individuals who can be said to be doing well in Zimbabwe. Those who have dropped from the ruling elite class have jointed the “screaming” class.

The “screaming” class has millions of people who have every reason to scream because the ruling elite have always rode rough-shod over them by denying them a political voice. For years they have screamed in pain and anger but no one ever hears them. They live in a glass dome confined there by the Mugabe dictatorship because their economic and/or political condition was contrary harmonious image of Zimbabwe Mugabe want the rest of the world to see.

The years of misrule and rampant corruption have precipitated a total economic melt down in which literally everyone in the country has been reduced into abject poverty and despair. There is widespread shortage of the very basic needs to sustain life; no food, shortage of fuel, electricity and water, a collapsed education and health service, etc. The suffering, anger and despair have turned the screaming into a wail of death.

Fear has kept Mugabe in State House for 29 long years. The down side of that has been the misery he has forced upon the screaming class. The glass dome he closed them in can not hold them for much longer; their suffering has become intolerable and their numbers have swelled and collective scream can now be heard through the thick glass. That the lives of millions should be sacrificed to keep a handful in opulent luxury is simply unsustainable. No amount of terror and murder can silence the screaming class!

After the 29 March 2008 election defeat Mugabe wheeled out his fear machine to intimidate and terrorise the Zimbabwe electorate in preparation for the 27 June presidential run-off with MDC’s Morgan Tsvangirai. By the end of May up to fifty innocent lives have been lost to political violence and hundreds of thousands have been beaten and or had their homes torched and many have since fled from their rural homes. No doubt many more crimes will be committed and lives lost before 27 June 2008. Whatever happens, the fact will still remain; no amount of fear will silence the screaming of the despairing majority.

Mugabe can rig the coming run-off, the chances are that he will; still he will find no where to hide so he cannot hear the cries of Zimbabweans for food and the other necessities of life.

Zimbabweans are dying for want of food and all the other things necessary to sustain life. The country’s standard of living has plummeted and with it life expectancy, from 60 years in 1980 to 34 years in 2005. It is this level of despair and helplessness that force people to find their voice.

People still fear Mugabe’s mad dogs the war veterans and the green bombers. But the daily hardships and despair this dictatorship has forced down their throats has given the people the courage to face the war veterans and all the torment with a renewed grit determination not to be silenced. The danger now is the people scream should shutter Mugabe’s glass dome, sweep his dictatorship aside and, unfortunately, a lot more besides.

Sunday, 18 May 2008


Today May 18 2008; there are more chilling tales of political beatings and murders in every story on Zimbabwe. The sorry story of George Nyandoro in the UK Observer, is one such story. These are human beings like you and me with loved ones who share in their pain and feel their loss.

I am as keen as many other Zimbabweans out there to see the back of Robert Mugabe. It is right that it should be done through the ballot and not the bullet; I have never lost my faith in the democratic process and never in my life encourage voter apathy. But when the price of exercising one’s democratic right to vote is human lives, as Mugabe has now done, then situation demands a review.

The best possible outcome of the run-off is that Tsvangirai has a convincing victory over Mugabe. Afterwards the victorious Tsvangirai moves swiftly to dismantle the Mugabe dictatorship by bring all those responsible for serious human rights violation to book and recover what the regime has looted and thus end the mismanagement and corruption. And in its place create a democratic system in which all Zimbabwean are valued and accorded the full rights and freedom. Then the human misery and sacrifice sweeping the country would excusable. Even then, concrete steps must be taken to protect the most helpless in society against the Mugabe onslaught rather than the current MDC position of literary abandoning them.

A Tsvangirai victory which will result in a government of national unity which effectively mean retaining the Zanu PF dictatorship and protecting those responsible for past wrongs and that they get to keep their loot would be a sell out.

A Mugabe victory, which is the most probable out come given the near impossible situation Tsvangirai now finds himself in, and the political and economic consequences of that with made it down right immoral that human lives, 32 so far have been murdered, were gabled like pawns in a game of chess.

Mugabe upped the stakes in the run-off by putting the security and lives of Zimbabweans at risk. He is a ruthless dictator who cares little about the suffering and deaths of anyone; we all know that. He had over 20 000 people murdered in the mid 1980s. Zimbabwe must be spared further blood shed.

What makes the whole run-off even less tolerable is that by taking part Tsvangirai is giving the dictatorship some degree of acceptability. The five weeks of machination by Mugabe following the 29 March, 2008 Election has left Mugabe with not a shred of democratic credential.
Last but not least, there are other ways of ending the Mugabe dictatorship without sacrificing so many innocent lives. Tsvangirai should explore these first and not go for the soft option. Tsvangirai like Mugabe is showing how little he values human life- that is a very, very worry thing indeed!

Wednesday, 14 May 2008


You can judge the character of a man by how the individual values the sufferings and lives of others. You have the heartless brute like Mugabe who simply does not give a damn at one end. On the other end, the saintly Martin Luther King who would go out of their way to share in the suffering of others and if necessary put their own live on the line to protect the lives of others.

Tsvangirai has FAILED to demonstrate that he cares about the suffering and lives of others on many occasions, the current political crisis being one occasion. He was pursued selfish political interest instead.

Tsvangirai and a few key MDC leaders have been out of the country for the last five weeks because “their feared for their lives”, so we are told. Did Tsvangirai and the rest feared for the lives of all those who had risked their lives on 29 March 2008 by voting for him and MDC? It is not the first time that Zanu PF thugs have turned on opposition supporter so he should have anticipated their deployment a few days after the March vote. Even if Tsvangirai had failed to anticipate the violence; he still has to answer “What did you do when the violence broke out?” Sadly he has done nothing.

He said he would return to Zimbabwe to contest the presidential run-off. He was prepared to risk his life and lives of those close to him for a chance to be elected president but would not lift a finger to save the lives or the millions of ordinary Zimbabweans whose lives have been turned completely up side down by Zanu PF thugs!

Of course by saying he will contest, Tsvangirai will be asking the Zimbabwe electorate to defy what Mugabe thugs have been coercing them to do. That is a red-rag to a bull and not just any bull but a ruthless and brutal one with the means and ways to show to delivery the punishment!

Zimbabwe has already seen what a heartless brute Mugabe is; over 20 000 innocent lives were lost during the mid 1980s alone. Do we really want another Matabeleland type massacre again!

When Mugabe deployed the war veterans, the green bombers, etc. he was clearly upping the stakes. Experience shows that he was not bluffing, he will beat, burn, terrorise, murder- do whatever it will take to ensure an elections victory. Even if an MDC victory was assured; still it is foolish to gamble with other people’s lives- particularly when these people are totally defenceless and helpless!

Many of us should fell some how responsible for having argued people to “go and vote MDC” before the 29 March 2008 vote. It would be totally irresponsible to do so now.

Yes the need to end the Mugabe dictatorship is even more urgent now than it was before 29 March. Still, there MUST be other ways of ending the dictatorship than throwing human lives like meat to a hungry lion. Lets face it, there is no other end and purpose to the suffering and deaths sweeping Zimbabwe today other than Mugabe’s thugs will get sick and tired of the it all and walk away.

Tsvangirai can also call for a mass-stay away. It has never worked in the past because it was badly organised. This time the nation is dying, physically and literally, for a political response to Mugabe’s campaign of violence. A mass-stay away will force Mugabe to focus his attention on something else other than picking off innocent voters one by one in the dead of night.

Tsvangirai, for good or bad, finds himself in a leadership position at this critical point in Zimbabwe’s history. He should grab the nettle and get on with it.

It Tsvangirai had shown some leadership qualities in the first three days after 29 March 2008 when Mugabe was still in a state of shock of the election defeat all this could have been avoided. The presidency was within his grasp and Tsvangirai, unfortunately let Mugabe snatch it away. So having give it away, why does he not do so now by refusing to take part in the run-off and, this time, save Zimbabwean lives?

MDC have made heavy weather of its parliamentary majority following the March election. The political reality in Zimbabwe is that all political power is in the hands of one man- Mugabe. However for all his political power, canning, rhetoric, brutality, etc. one thing has eluded Mugabe- the economy. In fact it was his ruthless desire for absolute power that made him chose blind loyalty to him over competency and merit. He did achieve his ambition of long years in power but at the price of having the most incompetent and corrupt regime in the world presiding over the worst performing economy in the world!

No doubt Mugabe will “win” the presidential run-off and will have to turn his attention immediately to the economy. Zimbabwe’s battered economy will need international help, particularly the West, to get it back on some form of recovery path. Mugabe will have to get Tsvangirai and MDC into some form of unity government to stand a chance of getting the West to step in.

Even if the unthinkable was to happen- a Tsvangirai win, he too will need to appease Mugabe or the thugs will step up their acts of violence. So either way, the government of national unity is on the cards for Zimbabwe. And it will be one in Mugabe’s own image.

In 1989 when Zanu PFand PF Zapu signed their unity accord, after the lose over 20 000 innocent live and all the other human suffering and material damages, what did the nation get in return? Well nothing really; we ended up with the same incompetent, corrupt and repressive Mugabe regime. Yes of course; Joshua Nkomo and his fellow PF Zapu leadership finally had a seat at the nation’s high table and joined in the looting of the people! Alas! It seems that is all we will get again this time!

Sunday, 11 May 2008

Morgan Tsvangirai has the self-hate strike of John Major

In the dying months of British Prime Minister John Major’s he seemed to make one blunder after another and most of them of his own making. Someone said of him, “If John Major saw a banana skin across the street; he will cross the street, step on it slip and fall!” It seems Morgan Tsvangirai, Zimbabwe’s MDC opposition leader has a similar self-hurt and self-hate disposition.

With Morgan Tsvangirai, his blunders defy common sense. If Tsvangirai is warned of a political landmine buried in the dirty; he will get off the beaten track to step on the mine. He will do it “under protest” of course – as if that should explain it all.

Taking part in the presidential run-off is one minefield Tsvangirai has had to walk through- as usual, he did not have but chose to do so- and so far has stepped on each and every mine Mugabe laid for him without missing one!

Tsvangirai and a few key people within MDC have been out of Zimbabwe since early April, supposedly because they feared for their lives. Tsvangirai and, presumably, the rest of his followers will return to Zimbabwe in the next few days times to take part in the presidential run-off. So in the critical period when Mugabe deployed his thugs and the whole nation waited with abated breathe for guidance from the opposition, MDC’s top leadership were nowhere to be found. And now, when Mugabe has accomplished his campaign of terror, it is suddenly “safe” for Tsvangirai and his fellow MDC leadership to return to Zimbabwe!

Tsvangirai has said he would take part in the run-off on condition that Sadc, AU and UN international election observers and international press presence are allowed back into Zimbabwe. He has also asked for SADC peacekeeper. Here we go again, Tsvangirai and his pathetic demands! As usual, Mugabe will contemptuously disregard these “conditions” and Tsvangirai will conveniently forget he ever made all these conditions and do whatever as he vowed he would not do.

Mugabe’s international statesman image had been tarnished by his acts of desperation of the last five weeks. The logic was simple enough; retaining the presidency was more important than protecting a public image he could do something about later once his tenancy in State House was safely secured. What he wants now is a run-off and the Zanu PF election machinery will deliver a convincing victory for him.

A Tsvangirai boycott now would give him the presidency in a silver platter but with the cursed sword hanging over his head. The whole world saw Mugabe’s frantic political machinations as the worst kind of election fraud, nothing else. Deny Mugabe the run-off will be the equivalent of refusing him the chance to wash the blood of the innocent lives his thugs have murdered in the last five weeks. Worse still, as a fraudulent president Mugabe will not get a penny in international help to rebuild the Zimbabwe economy.

The Zimbabwe economic melt down is the one issue Mugabe can not ignore for a single day. The economic reality of empty shop shelves, water and electricity cuts which last weeks on end, a 200 000% inflation rate, collapsed education and health service, etc. affect everyone including the hoards of thugs he deployed to terrorise and murder. If the melt down continues, and with him in office, it will get even worse; even his thugs will turn on him like a pack of hyenas!

Forget the nonsense about Tsvangirai “betraying” the people of Zimbabwe if he did not take part in the run-off. He betrayed the people when they delivered to him election victory on 29 March 2008 and he foolishly allowed Mugabe to snatch it away from him. And then was nowhere to be seen when Mugabe’s thugs went on a murderous rampage!

Tsvangirai is taking part in the run-off because he has nothing to lose and everything to gain, whatever the outcome! There is a slim possibility that in spite all the intimidation and murders by Mugabe’s thugs, the absence of MDC election agents in some Polling Stations, the absence of credible election observers, the betrayal by Tsvangirai and MDC, etc. the electorate will still deliver “final knock-out” Tsvangirai is seeking. If I was a betting man, I would put my money on Mugabe delivering the knock-out the punch. Whilst Tsvangirai will fight with goose feather padded gloves; Mugabe will be sporting with spiked knuckle gloves one of those medieval metal armour – it is hard to do a double shuffle in one of those for someone fit near impossible for a frail despot like Mugabe.

The result of the run-off is only to determine what roll Mugabe will have but one thing is a given- government of national unity. Mugabe would want it, a sop to the international community in return for the much needed economic assistance. Tsvangirai will want it- a sop to Mugabe to call off the marauding thugs. Which ever route we take the end result with be a Mugabe regime in all but name!

As far as Tsvangirai and his fellow MDC leaders are concerned they will now be entitled the same pecks and privileges that to date have been the exclusive reserve of Mugabe and his cronies only. By taking part in the run-off Tsvangirai is facilitating the formation of the unity government. If he boycotted the run-off it would be impossible for MDC to ever cooperate with Zanu PF.

So far, Tsvangirai has done everything that Mugabe wanted him to do and right on cue. Tsvangirai has become Donald Duck cartoon character of Zimbabwe politics running through a minefield and stepping on everyone of Mugabe’s landmines. Comical, if only it was him who paid the price of his folly; it is the ordinary people of Zimbabwe who have paid dearly for his mind bogging blunders.

When Mugabe fails to hold free and fair elections it is not just Tsvangirai and MDC who are being cheated, the whole nation too is cheated too.

What the people of Zimbabwe are dying for, physically and literally, is meaningful change. Change that will deliver the freedom and human rights and dignity denied them by this Mugabe dictatorship and by the white settler regime before him. The nation must have leaders with the humility to accept that they are fallible and therefore establish a political system in which leaders are accountable to the people. And the vision to see the benefit of a free and democratic system as contrast to Mugabe’s stifling autocracy.

The government of national unity will at best bring about some economic recovery, nothing much. For example, Mugabe’s cronies will not give up any of the commercial farmers they seized, ostensibly in the name of the landless peasants; and yet increased agricultural production will be a key to Zimbabwe’s economic recovery. The new regime will never deliver any meaningful political reforms; neither Zanu PF nor MDC would want to give up their privileged status. A white-washed dictatorship will never drag Zimbabwe out of the economic and political abyss Mugabe’s 28 years of dictatorial rule has landed this nation into!

At this critical juncture in our history, with a deeply entrenched dictator in State House it is rotten luck that Zimbabwe should have a blundering John Major character as the alternative! Rotten luck!

Monday, 5 May 2008

More innocent deaths whilst Tsvangirai dither!

Mugabe has to work on the assumption that Tsvangirai will participate in the run-off and therefore his thugs will continue in their drive to ensure that few people this time round will dare vote for Tsvangiai. So the beatings, murders, etc. will continue. As for Tsvangirai, may be he is waiting for a magical figure of those hospitalised and / or murdered to decide- 1000s hospitalised and 21 murdered is not high enough. The bottom line is the madness that is sweeping Zimbabwe today is set to continue and get even worse.

Saturday, 3 May 2008


There is one thing we can count on MDC’s do: i.e. to do the wrong thing!

Whatever reason(s) can proffer to justify why MDC should NOT take part in the run-off the fact of the matter is all of those reason(s) have existed on the ground for weeks. Mugabe deployed the war veterans, the green bombers, etc. within a day or two of knowing the results of the 29 March vote, for example. His intention for deploying the party thugs was self evident and so was the reason ZEC delayed announcing the results of the presidential race. There was absolutely nothing new Mugabe has done in the last four weeks none of us we did not already know or had guessed.

Tsvangirai for his part, he too has done nothing new in the four weeks to all Mugabe’s machinations. True to form he has do what he has always done: the wrong thing. He should have made it abundantly clear that he would NOT take part in the run-off in the atmosphere of wide spread intimidation and murder Mugabe’s thugs had created, for example. Boycotting the run-off now begs the question: did it take hundreds of thousands of beating and torture victims and twenty murdered to finally convince him the political atmosphere was not conducive to free and fair run-off?

Of course refusing to take part in the run-off would be the most logical and sensible thing to do. Tsvangirai himself has been out of Zimbabwe for weeks now “because he feared for his life!” How can he then be expected to have any meaningful campaign programme when he does not feel safe to return back to Zimbabwe?

The 29 March 2008 elections are the closest to free and fair elections Zimbabwe has ever come in its 28 year history. A fact that nearly costed Mugabe the presidency! He was forced to run that risk for one reason; he desperately needed international acceptance and credibility of the election results. The shocking defeat has forced him to take a number of measures he had disregarded as the last five weeks have shown. He nonetheless needs the international acceptance and credibility now even more than ever.

The Zimbabwe economy has hit rock bottom. The people have had to do without the most basic essentials of life for a long, long time. Mugabe knows he simply has do something to get the economy back of track because the people’s anger can not be contained for much longer. The cup is now full and overflowing. And this is why he has been courting international community; the Zimbabwe economic recovery is a pipedream without their financial help. The international community will not lift a finger to help unless they are satisfied the election/ run-off result is a true reflection of the free political will of the people of Zimbabwe.

If MDC does not take part in the run-off Mugabe can claim victory but the international community will not be fooled. And without economic recovery Mugabe’s rule will end soon with a violent outburst of the people’s long bottled anger and despair.

MDC should have done the right thing a long time ago; still it would be great for the party to do the right thing, better late than never! Do not hold your breathe, MDC has a great knack for doing the wrong thing.