Opinion / Columnist
Zimbabwe Is at a Tipping Point: a Close Anatomy of Zimbabwe Politics
18 Sep 2016 at 20:54hrs | Views
From whichever way you look at it, Zimbabwe is at a tipping point. The level of discontent with the political class has reached a crisis point thanks to the betrayal of the people by Zanu Pf and its government .Notwithstanding the fact that the opposition has largely been inept – failing to capitalise on the failures and weaknesses of Zanu PF. This state of affairs has rendered the country a laughing stock among other countries. It is indeed painful and depressing when casting back one's mind to the fact that Zimbabwe was once considered the bread basket of Africa .Now by any standard of economic measurement, Zimbabwe is considered by many as a basket case of Africa. For average Zimbabweans, the impact of this reality is unavoidable and hard-hitting; it affects their welfare and their dignity .Many Zimbabweans are slowly beginning to take matters into their own hands to find solutions to their predicaments hence we see a wave of political and consequently social unrests sweeping across the country nearly rendering the country ungovernable.
Zanu PF is disintegrating and imploding. The factions within Zanu PF are tearing each other to pieces. This is a governing party or by the way a party meant to be governing. The problems facing Zanu PF internally as an organisation have consequences on the whole country by virtue of it being a governing party. Zanu PF is largely the source of problems the country is currently facing; arguably some will determine that Zanu PF is the problem originates from the "evil Western countries". Far from it. Zanu PF has been in power since 1980 therefore it is largely responsible for the status quo in Zimbabwe. Zanu PF will never change but all the signs are that change will be brought to Zanu PF or forced upon Zanu PF either by natural causes or through an internal revolution within its rank and file. Many in Zanu PF will bleat and grunt denying the problems within Zanu PF because they live in a parallel universe. The facts on the ground and within the organisation speak for themselves. Zanu Pf's act of political self-harm is at its peak and increasingly the race is towards a spectacular grand finale which will be messy and bloody. Zanu PF has grown and nurtured a culture of corruption both in the economic and political sense .The corruption has become endemic and cancerous. Unfortunately, the opposition political parties have in public vocalised strongly against corruption but many of them in private are the beneficiaries of corruption they purport fight against.
The opposition political parties remain largely divided hence slow to organise themselves sufficient enough to inflict any lasting and deadly blow to Zanu PF. The objective by opposition parties must be to obliterate Zanu PF and not to be advocate for change within Zanu PF. That is a matter for Zanu PF pure and simple. The opposition or those who profess to be on the opposition side - many lack the grit and determination to challenge the Zanu PF government. There are too many chancers who jump into the bandwagon of leading opposition political parties when shamefully their sole interest is to exploit the people. Some may think that this is too simplistic a point to make but look at how many mickey mouse political parties are there in Zimbabwe and many of them don't even know what they stand for. These political parties are ideologically bankrupt. Many of these political parties are competing to emulate the ill-fated ZanuPF ideology. However, in all fairness, MDC in its early years stepped up to the plate and nearly delivered. However the internal squabbles within the organisation broke the spirit and determination of the movement. The movement is barely recognisable – only the carcass of the movement is left but there are too many vultures circling above to finish it off. Then there is a Mujuru ill-fitting outfit which is a Zanu PF offshoot fronted by Zanu PF rejects. Surely these Zanu PF graduates want to be trusted and entrusted as people's custodians? It beggars belief. Are Zimbabweans that gullible? Can they be hoodwinked into believing these political turncoats? All these factors and all these political entities are not strong enough to safeguard the political stability of Zimbabwe. I know I have not mentioned other political parties like Zapu , PDP ,MKD and many more others . The truth of the matter is that these political parties are largely a one man show.
Now then that the political landscape is so directionless, what then for Zimbabwe? The lack of robust political parties has been filled in by vociferous and brave pressure groups, for example Tajamuka/Sesijikile, This Flag ,WOZA and ZEFF to name just a few . These groups have been formed through the inspiration of disgruntled citizens, for disgruntled citizens against disgraceful political class. The government has been shaken to the core by the activities of these groups. Within a short period of time these groups have put enormous pressure on the government and the government is on the defensive. This has exposed the weaknesses in the government's often feared machinery of brutality. These groups have shown that people power can work. What is needed to achieve people power is co-ordination, bravery and luck. Zimbabwe is at a tipping point – a small incident will have the potential to set the whole country alight and those in government know it and they are nervous. Why shouldn't people take matters into their own hands to peacefully demand good governance? It is the people's democratic right to demand that the government be accountable , it is the people's democratic right to express their political opinion and demand better public services .
The looming economic collapse will put the government to test. People will be forced to take to the streets to demand food for the hungry, medicines for the sick, jobs for the jobless , justice for the poor and downtrodden . All this will precipitate a wave of social and political unrest. It is scary to think about how the government with a track record of brutality against its own citizens will respond. It is possible that any amateurish handling of the situation by the government will spell the doom and gloom for the country.
The responsibility is largely on the government of Zimbabwe to ensure that the country doesn't descend into chaos. Simply, the government needs to address people's concerns. It will not help the government at all if it buries its head in the sand and sing "hallelujah hosanna" without paying a sober approach to the people's concerns. That would be tantamount to abdication of government's core duty towards its citizens. The government needs to address the core issues of the economy , the health and social provisions for the people , law and order issues and issues of democratic deficits .To ignore all the above would be playing a dangerous game in which in the end of that dangerous game there will be more casualties and sadly no winners . The writing is on the wall. The government must take heed and listen to the citizens.
Sipho Phani Sibanda: I am a political amateur who takes pride in exercising my constitutional right of freedom of speech. I am driven by the unflinching love for my country. I can be contacted via firstname.lastname@example.org
Source - Sipho Phani Sibanda
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