Patson Dzamara could not hide his disappointed at the small crowd that bothered to attend the “Feedback Rally” called by NERA group on 5 April 2017.
"I am appalled by what I am seeing. I for one was out of the country, attending to some personal business. I was supposed to return to Zimbabwe tomorrow but I had to change my ticket and I came back today in order to attend the rally,” said Dzamara.
"The lack of co-ordination and poor attendance is disappointing. I am totally surprised that it seems as though Zimbabweans are not yet ready to cross over. I wonder what more incentive we need to face Mugabe's morbid regime head on. Elections are around the corner and Zimbabweans are still dilly dallying. At this rate we may not make it through."
Patson Dzamara is the brother of Itai Dzamara, the Africa Square activist who, with a handful of others wrote to President Mugabe demanding that he must go because he has failed to govern. Itai was abducted, for his trouble, over two years ago in broad daylight and has never been seen or heard from ever since. It is tempting to tell Patson to take heart from his brother’s activism; although only a handful of other stood by Itai’s side in Africa Square, the truth of his message was not in anyway diminished! Still, there is need to take stalk here.
Asking the people “to face Mugabe’s morbid regime head on” when there is hope of making a difference is one thing. Asking them to face the regime when there is no hope of changing even one iota is another matter.
The people of Zimbabwe believed Morgan Tsvangirai, Tendai Biti, Welshman Ncube and all the other MDC leaders that the 2013 elections will be free, fair and credible and will bring about meaningful political change. Of course, the whole nation was disappointed and shocked when Zanu PF blatantly rig the elections land the nation in the economic and political mess we see today.
The people were very foolish to believe have MDC leaders the 2013 elections would be free and fair since not even one democratic reforms was implemented in the five years of the GNU. The people should have listened to the SADC leaders who warned against taking part in the elections with no reforms in place. Mr Dzamara will have to agree that the people will be very, very foolish indeed to allow themselves to be dragged into yet another election without demanding the assurance that the necessary reforms have been implemented this time.
After the rigged July 2013 elections all the MDC factions agreed on two things; that Zanu PF rigged the 2013 elections and that they will not contest any future elections without first implementing the reforms. MDC-T, MDC-N and the MDC Renewal (before it too fragmented further) have all boycotted all by-elections in pursuance of their “No reform, no election!” resolutions.
It is common knowledge that not even one democratic reform has been implemented since the July 2013 elections. Douglas Mwonzora, Secretary General of MDC-T and convener of the NERA grouping, has himself admitted that less than 5% of the electoral reforms have been implemented.
So why, oh why are MDC-T, MDC-N and all the other opposition parties, 50 at the last count, all saying they will be contesting next year’s elections?
Senator David Coltart explained why the MDC leaders had all contested the 2013 elections even when it was obvious Zanu PF was going to rig the election.
“The worst aspect for me about the failure to agree a coalition was that both MDCs couldn’t now do the obvious – withdraw from the elections,” explained Senator Coltart in his book The Struggle Continues 50 years of tyranny in Zimbabwe.
“The electoral process was so flawed, so illegal, that the only logical step was to withdraw, which would compel SADC to hold Zanu PF to account. But such was the distrust between the MDC-T and MDC-N that neither could withdraw for fear that the other would remain in the elections, winning seats and giving the process credibility.”
So, when MDC leaders, to the man and woman, maintained their position that the 2013 elections will be free and fair they all knew they were lying!
Today the same opposition claim they are being very courageous in once again contesting the elections and “look the tyrant in the eyes,” as Tendai Biti told Zimeye listeners a week ago. They are all lying again, they are contesting the flawed elections to win the few gravy train seats Zanu PF has since learned to give away as bait.
No Mr Dzamara the people have very good reason to be wary of our corrupt and incompetent politicians, on both sides of the political divide, because they have been lied to, conned, betrayed, harassed, beaten, raped and many even murdered in cold blood and yet the promises of freedom, human rights and economic prosperity continue to be a mirage.
If the people are refusing to attend meaningless NERA Rallies and to be dragged into a flawed election in which Zanu PF and the opposition share the spoils of power then this is the wisest move the ordinary people of Zimbabwe have ever made! With no reforms in place, there is nothing for povo in next year’s elections other than the usual broken promises and another five years of misery and hopelessness.