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Does the MDC have the audacity to ward off terror?
July 05, 2010
ZANU PF as led by Robert
Mugabe has not the slightest intention to allow Zimbabweans to freely
express their political will especially if it has the potential
to eventuate in a change of government.
Their culture of violence
has sabotaged every election since 2002. It is now being shamelessly
brought to bear on the current constitutional outreach programme
even with the unity government in place.
The simple reality is
that Mugabe is not interested in any process whose outcome might
result in Morgan Tsvangirai succeeding him as President. He will,
therefore, stop at nothing in his quest to stay in power. He believes
not in the democratic process but in tyranny as the tried and tested
and, therefore, the only means to attaining and staying in power.
He does not believe in free and fair elections let alone their results.
Consequently, to believe
that, simply by virtue of the institution of the inclusive government
and his denunciations of violence, Mugabe has become more disposed
to democracy than dictatorship is to be fooled by him.
Our country has been
brutalised at the expense of satisfying Mugabe and a handful of
evil, self-interested, murderous, parasitic and dictatorial sycophants
who have neither the desire nor the conscience to reflect on the
extent of their unbelievable destructiveness.
Reports so far compiled
across the country about the three-month long constitutional outreach
programme paint an extremely sad and disturbing picture. They are
a reflection not just of the breathtaking level of shamelessness
and willingness on the part of ZANU PF to intimidate, torture and
even kill innocent citizens but also of their frightening determination
to do anything and everything, however unthinkable it may be, simply
in order to confirm Mugabe as President for life.
That soldiers whose duty
should be to safeguard the nation against any threat to the safety
and security of its civilian citizens are ordered to march on that
very civilian population with arms of war is outright terrorism.
That they do so chanting the slogans of a specific party and, therefore,
declaring their allegiance not to the nation in keeping with their
oath but to that party, speaks to the character of Zimbabwe as a
Instead of promoting
peace and security they sow terror and strife. Across the nation,
whatever sense of security was engendered by the advent of the inclusive
government, is fast giving way to considerable apprehension and
Newly established military
camps in the Manicaland and Masvingo provinces are an ominous presence.
In Karoi, for instance, soldiers have become a menacing and disturbingly
common sight. In Bindura residents have been told that if they fail
to support the Kariba draft which guarantees Mugabe-s excessive
powers they do so at their own peril.
Sadly, there is absolutely
nothing new in this behaviour. It has happened too often before
to come as a surprise to anyone. If anything, it has come to be
regarded more as normal than abnormal in Zimbabwe. The onus is not
on Mugabe but on Tsvangirai to show it in a different light.
Thus far, he has not
succeeded in doing so and the inevitable danger is that a lot more
innocent lives will be lost, whatever progress has been achieved
so far derailed, and the country will plummet further into the depths
of dictatorship from which it may never emerge.
Any honest analysis of
the MDC post September 15, 2008 would indicate that apart from unsuccessfully
declaring unilateral appointments by Mugabe as 'null and void-
the MDC as we have known it over the years: courageous, confrontational,
uncompromising and proactive has become alarmingly ineffective and
compromised. Indeed, there might just well be some justification
for the view that many in the MDC have become 'comfortable-
in government and are more focused on enjoying the privileges of
office than on challenging Mugabe and ZANU PF.
How many people had limbs
chopped off, relatives tortured and or killed in the fight for democracy
during the infamous 2008 presidential election? They endured their
sufferings because they were filled with hope and, while they did
not expect direct assistance from the MDC at the time, many now
rightly expect Tsvangirai and the MDC, as partners in the inclusive
government with a say in controlling the police force, to do more
to protect not just its supporters but all peace loving Zimbabweans
who continue to be terrorised by ZANU PF thugs.
There is a looming danger
that, if the MDC does not have the audacity to ward off the terror,
victory will go to those intent on having things their way as more
and more Zimbabweans give in to their demands.
Whenever reports of calculated
and deliberate violence have surfaced, this writer has given voice
to the legitimate expectation of the people of Zimbabwe that Tsvangirai
and the MDC should do more than just deplore the violence and actually
take some decisive action. Zimbabwe relies on Tsvangirai, not Mugabe,
to save innocent lives.
camps across the country must be closed immediately and troops returned
to barracks. That will not happen if all Tsvangirai does is to wring
his hands. Tsvangirai must physically go to those camps to ensure
that they are closed down.
Maziwisa is Interim President of the Union for Sustainable Democracy
(USD) and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
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