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  • Politicians doing injustice to the people of Zimbabwe
    Youth Forum
    March 17, 2010

    The deadlock by the three political parties who are party to the inclusive government over how to fully implement the Global Political Agreement (GPA) is a great injustice to the people of Zimbabwe. This continued failure by the two MDC formations and Zanu PF to be sincere enough to own up to the letter and spirit of the document that they all willingly appended their signatures to is proving costly for the inclusive government as they are now failing to reach some of their set priority targets in facilitating for full recovery and stability in Zimbabwe. SADC, led by President Jacob Zuma of South Africa has not helped matters by their continued handling of this apparent deadlock without the alacrity and astuteness it deserves. The reluctance or failure by SADC to put pressure and give proper guidance on the three political parties to resolve all outstanding issues according to the GPA exposes what many Zimbabweans have known of politicians for long; that once they are in government, personal and party interests come first at the expense of the people.

    We have already noted signs that the socio-economic and political situation in Zimbabwe is slowly degenerating to the pre-GPA period, characterized by extreme polarization, poverty, intolerance and open hostility. The recent upsurge in cases of politically-motivated violence in some rural and urban parts of Zimbabwe is only one setback on an endless list of impediments that are hindering efforts by the government to collectively address the myriad of crises that have taken root in the country. The manner in which the negotiators from the three parties would adjourn endless times or fail to form a quorum for negotiations raises more questions than answers over the real intentions of politicians and their seriousness in addressing the plight of the people over personal and party interests. Surely if our politicians can fail to hold a meeting to resolve the plight of Zimbabweans because one negotiator has to travel overseas clearly betrays a situation where the people have become second priority in a scenario overtaken by a fight for power and control.

    It is this same show of insincerity by politicians in the inclusive government that is threatening to derail the constitutional reform process. There is no way that we can surely expect to obtain a people-driven constitution in the ensuing violence that is resurfacing in the urban and rural areas. It is now apparent that the national healing, reconciliation and integration agenda by the government is a far-cry from reality on the ground given the continued hostilities, arguments and open show of disunity by the parties in government over partisan political battles at the expense of the people's livelihoods and welfare which they all agree had reached catastrophic levels. This is the main reason why they met at the negotiating table and eventually appended their signatures to the GPA. It is apparent that Zanu PF is opposed to genuine democratic reform given the manner in which they are trying to resuscitate their violence machinery (mainly youth from the national youth training service) ahead of the elections which are imminent at the conclusion of the inclusive government. The MDC led by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has not helped matters by the manner in which they have handled the issue of sanctions. This is the same reason why Zanu PF politicians are quick to blame their slightest misdeeds, and justify their refusal to cede on key demand for democratic reforms on failure by the MDC to call for the removal of sanctions.

    What is most evident in all these political games however is that the people of Zimbabwe are the biggest losers at the end of it all. Civil servants continue to yearn for better pay and working conditions which may never come because there are still outstanding issues. A lot of young children and youth are out of school because they cannot access decent and affordable education promised to them by these same politicians. Social service delivery continues to be deplorable in most urban areas where poverty and disease continue to wreck havoc, all because the politicians of the day cannot agree over how to implement an agreement that they appended their signatures to in the first place. Our hospitals are still understaffed, ill-equipped and without adequate medicines and drugs.

    We urge the MDC formations and Zanu PF not to take the people of Zimbabwe for granted through such irresponsible behavior. Clearly if they cannot agree for the sake of the people, they do not deserve to be the people's choice of government. As the Youth Forum we will actively urge the people of Zimbabwe to be clear with the government and demand that they serve the interests of the people first and as an uppermost priority. For as long as they continue to sacrifice the people in pursuit of power and personal gain, the people will always judge them accordingly, as a cabal only interested in personal aggrandizement. This is the same culture of politics that we have seen flourish under Zanu PF and is clearly spreading across the political divide. They are in government because of the people and it is high time they started serving the people, with genuineness, openness, and sincerity. This also serves as a call to SADC and President Zuma not to be taken on a ride by the feuding parties in the inclusive government. If talks cannot end this impasse or give room for genuine progress, then SADC should follow the agreed channels and let the world know that the inclusive government in Zimbabwe is not working.

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