Latest News Editor's Choice

Opinion / Columnist

Mzembi a game changer in Zimbabwe politics

18 Dec 2019 at 19:24hrs | Views
Many people across political divide are asking this critical question, who is Walter Mzembi? Zimbabweans are yearning for change despite the vacuum that has been created by both the ruling party Zanu PF and opposition. Zimbabwe politics has lost its taste and leverage for level playing field resulting in majority of Zimbabweans losing hope on the so-called new dispensation which played a critical role in Mugabe's ouster through a military coup. Within the G40 cabal, many have come to the conclusion that there is only presidential hopeful, and his name is none other than Dr Mzembi who is a bit clean and well respected across political divide.

Mzembi's name has not featured anywhere near the human rights contentious issues, despite being a Government for over ten years. Respected politician and former Tourism and Foreign Affairs Minister Dr Walter Mzembi remains a game changer in Zimbabwe politics. The reflection of the current political dynamics in Zimbabwe clearly indicates that our politics remain toxic, indecisive and entangled around hate and intolerance. Mzembi who was a contender for World tourism body as a Secretary General remains a hope for many Zimbabweans who are anchoring on a third force option. Judging from the current dramatic monologue evolved around Mbeki's surprise appearance over national dialogue has clear political indicators that there is vacuum in our present politics. Mzembi the only official in the previous regime who played smart politics and his hands has never dripped blood. Dr Walter Mzembi is a deferred potential Presidential aspirant who could change the Zimbabwe political landscape if given chance to bounce back in the mainstream politics. Studying from a distance the former Foreign Affairs Minister has clearly calibrated his re-entry into politics and may not be in a hurry to get into the mainstream politics. Mzembi a calculative politician, has avoided responding to media taunts, cheap and personal pot shots at his person which has obviously been a project for deliberate besmirching by his enemies in the current administration.

After a near successful run for the post of United World Tourism Organisation Secretary General for which he received a rare commendation from the then cabinet of Zimbabwe for excellent statesmanship and defence of brand Zimbabwe it was a cold blooded act of malice for the very same Government two months later to withdraw its goodwill and persecute him for his loyalty to the late President Robert Mugabe. The last man standing before a detach military coup, Mzembi's diplomatic skills have been tested to the limit even in his self-imposed political sabbatical but he has responded with an characteristic golden silence, only broken after nearly two years with another of his trade-mark diplomatic epistles urging dialogue between President Emmerson Mnangagwa and Advocate Nelson Chamisa as the closet solution to resolving the current national crisis. It is a fact that Mzembi authored the current diplomatic policy approach he announced on the day current President Mnangagwa was fired from both his Government position as Vice President and party Vice President. His successor , Rtd General Dr Sibusiso Moyo did not see the need to author his own policy approach preferring to adopt the Mzembi one, hook, line and sinker testimony to both men's foresight in international relations.

Mzembi a sober character with presidential qualities have taken a sober stance since his departure from mainstream politics following a military coup leading to Mugabe's ouster. Mzembi commands a huge following from students, politicians across political divide, business community, judiciary and diplomatic relations. Many believe Mzembi's political woes range from his smart politics and as a presidential hopeful and aspirant. The Former Tourism Minister was one of Mugabe's confidante, whose politics and practice was defined as "smart and strategic". This entails why Mzembi is facing a number of trumped up charges from Mnangagwa's regime which defines his potential as a presidential hopeful in Zimbabwe. Amongst the G40 stalwarts, Walter remains the only potential and well accepted guy from across political divide. During Mugabe era, he is one of the few respected ministers who performed well. Mzembi may tactfully be avoiding direct confrontation with Emmerson Mnangagwa preferring to work his way back into mainstream politics through a corporate rebranding route, exactly the same way he entered politics from business two decades ago, and remaining largely  technocratic in his approach to politics throughout his tenure in both government and his party. Mzembi, he altered the political landscape regressively, the gun now leads politics, and it's a curse we have to cure going forward. Within the G40 formation, he looks more strategic and acceptable within political formations.

Mzembi's classical leadership qualities is reproduced into six matrix namely, he represents the young generation, the poor, the rich, less privileged, he carries a fatherly picture and remains a neutral figure in Zimbabwe politics. His name has never been dragged in controversial matters in comparison with other politicians across political divide. Mzembi's name continue dominating on the political scenes, and many people are asking who Walter Mzembi is? There is a clear testimony why Mzembi remains a thorn in Zanu PF flesh, just after the military coup which led to the ouster of former veteran leader Robert Mugabe, Mzembi was ED's target, out of the whole G40 cabal, he is the only one who was on target despite court processions giving him a lifeline of relief, they ensured that he was haunted of the country. Mzembi (55), exuded the hallmarks of personal diplomacy so imperative in leading such an important assignment. He convinced the world to assemble at the mighty Victoria Falls in 2013, organized the biggest match ever in Zimbabwe, the warm up match between our warriors and Brazil in 2010, and conceived the popular Harare International Carnival drawing millions in fans in the streets of Harare. This clearly would irk anyone following his rising star at the time.

The popular Vic Falls Carnival was a child of the Harare edition and draws thousands every year end to this day. Mzembi started threatening the entitlement politicians within his party when he conceived the popular religious tourism policy which the current Government has sought to rubbish by prosecuting him for abuse of office for donating 2010 public viewing screens to the Pentecostal churches, UFI, PHD, ZCC after identifying them as critical mass hosts of tourism pilgrims. Ironically President Mnangagwa himself was the guest of honour at ZCC Mbungo Masvingo designation of this church as a Religious Tourism shrine at which he handed the TV screen he seeks to incarcerate his brother Walter for that effect. Celebration church during this time also was designated a Religious Tourism asset because of its conference facilities. One would dare to ask this simple question, where is Mzembi's mischief, it seems it was Mzembi endearing himself directly with the masses and constituency groups. He was a sought after speaker, an orator by all accounts, at Universities, Ohio University, amongst them. Mzembi has a huge following that is coveted by his political rivals hence the thrust to undermine him persistently.

Tawanda Mhezi is a political Analyst and he can be contacted at

Source - Tawanda Mhezi
All articles and letters published on Bulawayo24 have been independently written by members of Bulawayo24's community. The views of users published on Bulawayo24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Bulawayo24. Bulawayo24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.