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next to fall?
Trevor Ncube & Jonathan Moyo, BBC Focus on Africa
media entrepreneur Trevor Ncube argues there are parallels with
What has happened in Tunisia and Egypt is an inspiration
to oppressed people worldwide. Until early January, Tunisians and
Egyptians were viewed from the outside as politically apathetic
and docile. To challenge the president would mean detention and
torture. But all that seemed to change in a matter of days.
And you never know where the tipping point is going
to come from. In Tunisia it came from the high-school graduate who
divided to set himself on fire. Now the question is: what will be
the spark in Zimbabwe? It is obvious that there is anger with lack
of jobs, poor infrastructure and dismal living conditions. Because
of this, I feel that Zimbabwe is ripe for change. But at the moment
the fear to act matches that fear felt on the streets of Cairo up
until January 25, that day the of the first protests. What Zimbabweans
now understand is that it is possible to leap over the psychological
barrier and meet the leaders face on.
Events in Tunisia and Egypt also teach us the opposition
parties are not necessarily important for change to happen. In the
initial stages of the protests in North Africa, opposition parties
were nowhere to be seen. So the fact that the Movement for Democratic
Change is now part of the government is not an impediment to the
people rising up and demanding to be governed fairly.
There is, however, one significant difference which
may ultimately stop the spread of protest. If you look at the role
that the internet, and especially social media, played in Tunisia
and Egypt there can be no parallel with Zimbabwe. The internet infrastructure
is creaky and cannot support the kind of connectivity required to
organise protests. Also many of the disgruntled middle class who
may be in a position to utilize the internet have left. They may
well be campaigning from the diaspora but their direct participation
in this effort is curtailed.
There is something to be said for fighting the battle
on the home front".
Ncube publishes five newspapers in Zimbabwe and South Africa
politician, Jonathan Moyo thinks Trevor Ncube is entirely missing
"Over the last ten or so years Zimbabwean
pessimists and merchants of regime change have developed a tendency
to wish for change without examining the historical context and
relevance of the upheavals. The latest case, which is a classic
example of a poor comparison of oranges and apples, is Trevor Ncube-s
comments which wishfully proposes that Zimbabwe is ripe for the
kind of street protests that recently rocked North Africa.
If Ncube-s proposition is simply that protests
can happen in Zimbabwe then he is stating the obvious because there
is no country that is immune from such action. But if he means that
Zimbabwe is particularly vulnerable to these types of protests recently
witnessed in Tunisia and Egypt then he is hopelessly daydreaming.
Zimbabwe is not like Egypt whose reactionary government
under President Hosni Mubarak was, and still since he was ousted,
an American puppet. And Egypt is not like Zimbabwe whose revolutionary
government under President Robert Mugabe is anti-imperialist, anti-colonialist
and anti-neocolonialists. The protests in Tunisia and Egypt were
notable but not revolutionary.
Ncube is so blinded that he cannot see he is welcoming
the dreadful military coup that has taken place in Cairo. The junta
has suspended the constitution and dissolved parliament to rule
by decree with open support from hypocrites and pseudo-democrats
in the US and Europe. Should Zimbabwe go the same way and also become
a military dictatorship like Egypt?
There is absolutely nothing about the protests in
Tunisia and Egypt to inspire Zimbabweans unless they are Western
puppets and have counter revolutionaries in their ranks.
Government and leadership change or succession in
Zimbabwe, as in other revolutionary countries such as Cuba and China,
is bound to be home-grown and peaceful".
Moyo is on Zanu-PF-s Politburo and a former information minister
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