Trip to France, Asia: waste of resources
PRESIDENT Mugabe is very self-conscious about his many foreign
trips, for several reasons. People make fun of them because there are so many
problems at home that he has failed to solve.
Many think it is
irresponsible to globe-trot when foreign currency for essentials cannot be
found. He is also aware that there are many people who believe a major reason
for his finding the flimsiest pretext to go on a junket, is so that his youngish
wife can go on shopping excursions.
His propagandists now go out of their
way to try to reduce the rude remarks that are made when he embarks on yet
another trip. His recent holiday junket to far-east Asia was carefully described
as a "working holiday." On his return from an Addis Ababa summit of the African
Union, an organisation of nothing but hot air, he described it as "the most
Most recently, Mr and Mrs. Mugabe and their entourage
basked in the glow of being smiled on by French president Jacques Chirac during
a 'business trip' to Paris. In reading all the papers and commentators who never
tire of reminding us of their strong patriotism, pan-Africanist and
anti-imperialist credentials, I was amused to find that French neo-colonialism
is considered somehow less odious than the British variety!
slaughtered hundreds of thousands of Algerians for doing no more than seeking
independence. Mugabe's pal Chirac, served in the French army in Algeria to help
suppress the colony. When the Algerians won their long, bloody, bitter war for
independence, France did not graciously accept 'the winds of anti-colonial
change' that were blowing all over the world.
France's dishonourable legacy
in post-colonial Africa is a matter of record. At the recent meeting of African
leaders invited to Paris by Chirac, he grandly, imperialistically expressed his
relative approval of the gathered natives on the basis of whether he greeted
them with a kiss on the cheeks or not, and how many times! The good boys in his
opinion, were pecked on both cheeks. The naughty ones were kissed lightly on one
cheek to show how they must pull up their socks to qualify for Monsieur Chirac's
approval. The bad guys had to contend with an aloof handshake, but still they
beamed with pleasure, just happy to be in Chirac's presence!
The irony of it
is perplexing and shocking. The France that has committed ten-fold, all the sins
against its ex-colonies that President Mugabe accuses Britain of having
committed against Zimbabwe, is now billed as our new international chaperone!
So-called anti-colonialist Mugabe dutifully, delightedly, embarrassingly gushed
words of adulation about Chirac for inviting him to Paris. The mind boggles to
see how being invited under such conditions, and by such a man as Chirac, could
be considered a diplomatic coup for Zimbabwe.
Except for having defied
British efforts to have Mugabe excluded from the meeting, what was achieved? If,
as Mugabe claims, Chirac wants to intercede between Blair and Mugabe, it would
no doubt make Mugabe feel very important, but is it reasonable to expect that
the British would accept the idea of arch-rival France serving as broker between
it and Zimbabwe? Is this not a naive reading of British-French relations over
the centuries by Mr Mugabe? What are we saying about ourselves when we consider
it an achievement for it to be proposed that two ex-colonial powers should sit
down to discuss getting us out of our own rut?
Mr Mugabe proudly declared
that Obasanjo and Mbeki had asked for Chirac's assistance in solving Zimbabwe's
crisis. If true, what happened to seeking "African solutions to African
problems?" Must we go to a European capital to appeal to a neo-colonial power to
clean up our mess? And this just weeks after the "most successful ever" AU talk
shop! Is this all about seeking the approval of a European power, as long as
it's not Britain?
Fresh from the euphoria of being allowed into France, the
Mugabe entourage went to Malaysia. Absolutely in his element at the non-aligned
summit, Mugabe slammed/lambasted/attacked/condemned the imperialists, apparently
not realising he had just been slam-dunked by one in France! No number of
supportive statements from NAM will make the least bit of difference to our
After that, it was off to south east Asia, where he goes at least
once a year, and reads the same old speech every time. Trade between us and them
"is set to increase," Zimbabwe businesspeople are not proactive, the West is
interfering with South-South cooperation, Asians please come and invest in
Yet with each passing year that he misrules
Zimbabwe, it becomes less economically competitive and attractive for investors
from anywhere. Our ability to produce many of the goods Mugabe proudly puts on
display all over Asia is greatly reduced. Our industrial capacity and foreign
currency earning potential is declining while that of Asia is going up. The
dwindling number of exporters get a fraction of the value of their goods because
Mugabe's regime doesn't want to own up to the true worthlessness of our
Foreign currency shortages, a high inflation rate and fuel
shortages all conspire to turn more and more of us into traders and dealers,
fast-buck artists rather than producers thus reducing our chances of long-term
economic viability even more. With the combination of the unrealistic official
exchange rate and price controls, it makes far more sense for a Zimbabwean
businessperson to speculate and trade in foreign currency, than to try to use it
to begin a factory or expand his operations.
The "confounding indifference
from businesspeople" in Asia and locally to his pleas for action which he,
Mugabe, perennially whines about has very good reasons. While he talks the talk
of business, his actions are economically naive and ill-informed. They have
resulted in one of Africa's most promising economies, not so long ago on par
with much of the Asia that he now grovels to, sinking to its present shameful
level. All his 'economic revival plans' have come to naught, and while he is
hosted politely in parts of Asia, no one takes him seriously, hence the total
lack of any meaningful links in all the years he has been trekking there.
The cheap satisfaction of having blown off a lot of hot, empty rhetoric does
not in any way help Zimbabwe get out of the mess it is in. To bill as a
diplomatic success the opportunity to do so and get applause from people who
don't care about Zimbabwe's situation, or are perhaps even pleased to see its
decline as they cheer, is to set our standards of achievement very low.
Mugabe burned up national resources flying thousands of kilometres to visit two
continents, and came back absolutely empty-handed. Unlike her husband, who is
quite content to just hear the sweet sound of his own voice, uttering invectives
while his audiences marvel at, and are entertained by a bravado not backed up by
a successful economy, Mrs Mugabe is very practical-minded. She braved the rude,
intrusive photographers in Paris, and the shocked outrage at home at a mindless
materialism at a time of real hardship, to burn some foreign currency shopping.
On a scale of one to a 100, I give Mr Mugabe zero for his failure to achieve
anything on this latest junket. I give Mrs Mugabe one and a half points for
coldly setting her priorities, and then aggressively seeking to achieve them,
appearances and public opinion be damned.
Mugabe, George W guilty of posturing
americannotes By Ken
By the time you read this letter, American bombs will probably be
raining down on Iraq like hailstones (zvivhuramabwe). I will write more about
I could not help noticing that while our respected Leader was
making a great speech in Kuala Lumpur and before that in France, Britain was
announcing that it was spending £67 million on food aid (U$150 million) to save
Zimbabwe from starvation. Earlier, the US had announced food aid worth US$500
million for Zimbabwe and the surrounding countries. Therefore, the speech by our
president, in which he condemned these two countries as wicked imperialists,
while extending a begging bowl behind his back, is called posturing.
Posturing is defined as adopting an "attitude, or assuming an artificially
affected attitude." I used to think Africans were masters of 'posturing' but I
have been proved wrong. Posturing is a political disease and is very common
among US politicians as well. The greatest practitioner of this 'attitude' must
be Alabama's politicians.
Governor Bob Riley is probably the undefeated
champion of this game. Governor Riley comes to his office daily at 8.00am and
starts his business with prayer and Bible study. The whole point of posturing is
to divert attention from real problems. This gives a false impression that the
state of Alabama is a 'Christian state'. Nothing can be further from the truth.
Alabama is still prosecuting Ku Klux Klan members who murdered black civil
rights leaders over 30 years ago. Alabama is perhaps the third poorest state
from the bottom, among the 50 states which make up the union. The reason given
is that it was slow in adopting an environment conducive to economic development
because it preferred to hold on to its racist policies even though they stood in
the way of progress.
The chief judge of Alabama who has, by his own efforts,
raised US$2 million dollars for a stone monument at the state Supreme Court, of
the 10 Commandments, has joined Governor Riley in this hypocritical posturing
exercise. If these two sinners would just love their neighbours as they do
themselves, there would be no need to erect stone monuments in the courthouse.
Posturing is a very dangerous exercise. It diverts attention and efforts
from actual needs and focuses them on symbolic acts which postpone the problem.
It fulfils the sinner's great spiritual emptiness-the lack of backing up
righteous deeds with symbolic actions.
This story carries me to the Bush for
Oil War in Iraq. Iraq which has less than one inch of rainfall per year, will
receive a lot of rain this year, except that it will be made up of bombs. The
plan is to rain 3 000 bombs in the first three hours of battle and to saturate
the country with more bombs than were used in Vietnam.
President George Bush
has, by and large, made his point that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein is an evil
man and that he must be ousted. But with typical American bravado, he adds that
the US will free Iraq from oppression. The whole point of posturing is to divert
attention from the real issues.
The US hates evil dictators only if these
evil dictators are not on its side. Saddam Hussein was himself their darling
once and was on the US side in the war against Iran, a neighbour which had
provoked neither the US nor Iraq. I am sure American people will understand the
real issues in this war.
These two are that Saddam Hussein outfoxed Daddy
George Bush-the former US president-in the 1991 Iraqi war. Daddy Bush assumed
that by throwing US$100 million here and there to the Iraqi opposition parties,
Saddam would be overthrown by an internal coup. When US economic sanctions
failed, Vice President Dick Cheney's Halliburton Oil Company cashed in by
selling US$78 million dollars of equipment to Iraq in 1999. Bush has tried to
make all sorts of connections between Iraq and the Al Qaeda terrorist
organisation, which does not hold water for the simple reason that Al Qaeda is a
religious organisation while Iraqi President Saddam Hussein is an infidel. The
twain is not one flesh.
By hiding the real problems behind some outrageous
posturing, the politicians confuse themselves. The US populace is beginning to
wake up to the possibility that this war is really about restoring the family
honour injured by Saddam Hussein in 1991 and about blood for oil.
politician fools nobody but himself. George W Bush could have made a stronger
case by simply stating the fact that Saddam Hussein has outfoxed the US and UN
for 12 years and that a great country like the US will not tolerate being played
a number by a tin-pot dictator. It must punish him in order to redeem its honour
as a great power. By assuming a posture instead of facing the real issue-whether
the US should destroy a small country, kill millions of women, children, and
innocent people in order to redeem its honour, has been avoided. Another
favourite form of posturing is to refer to dead civilians as 'collateral
Politicians are made of the same cloth. Some are just far worse
Mugabe's degrees, useless
GOOD governance, democracy and
patriotism require commitment to the cause of the people and their welfare, not
paper qualifications, as Robert Mugabe believes.
At the slightest
opportunity, Mugabe brags, rants and raves about his so-called academic
achievements. Zimbabweans have long seen through this irrational posturing as
the evidence is there for all to see: economic collapse, starvation and death.
In the case of Robert Mugabe in particular, claims to academic excellence
have turned out to be an embarrassment to the institutions associated with his
so-called academic successes. His record in public office speaks for itself. He
has single handedly destroyed a promising economy; ruptured well-settled
communities; slaughtered hundreds and driven millions into exile, all this in a
self-serving quest to retain power while Zimbabwe burns.
In the run-up to
the presidential election last year, Tsvangirai challenged Mugabe to a public
debate on the state of the economy and the declining standards of living of the
majority of the people. Mugabe was scared and he cowardly ignored the call.
It is therefore not surprising that on arrival from his recent shopping trip
abroad, Mugabe launched an inarticulate tirade against the MDC leader in a
desperate attempt to deflect the attention of his immediate audience from the
grim reality that he has engineered for the past 23 years. It was evident that
despite howls of plastic support from fellow dictators, Mugabe came home
With nothing tangible to offer for the myriad of problems he
created at home, he sought refuge in a violent attack on Tsvangirai, calling him
a ghost. This is quite revealing. How does he propose to transform Tsvangirai
from a living human being to a ghost?
By far the largest creator of ghosts
in Zimbabwe has been none other than Mugabe himself. It will be recalled that in
the past three years, this dictator has presided over a plethora of tyranny,
murder and rape of thousands of innocent Zimbabweans.
Mugabe has now
admitted and announced to Zimbabweans that he is seeing ghosts. The only ghosts
that have now come to haunt him are the lamenting souls of the hundreds of
innocent Zimbabweans that he has butchered for the past 23 years. With a number
of paper qualifications under his arm, Mugabe has been a terrible example of a
heartless leader. He has stuck to power despite abundant evidence that he has
lost the moral authority and legitimacy to remain in office.
Zimbabweans have long ceased to be fooled by Mugabe's utterances.
National Chairman, MDC
Mugabe is short of vision
We are being ruled by a man with
no vision at all. He spends most of his time on trips to Asia where he attacks
George Bush and Tony Blair. But these two are not killing their own
Politically, we have lost a lot of our friends and economically,
we are losing many talented professionals to other nations. No wonder Thabo
Mbeki does not want this Mugabe regime to go because his country is benefiting
from the exodus.
Shame on you Mbeki. Children have no future at all because
Chisangapere chinoshura. Uchaenda chete.
Zim Std letters
Real Canadians not like Menashe
AT the outset, no one in Canada
is like this guy. No one in Canada is sure that he is in fact,
He is allowed to expound his treachery simply because our weak
government is spineless and leaderless. It is too easy for politicians to climb
under a protective shell with the coward's age-old plea .. "but we didn't know".
The solution is simple-you must do more and quickly, on your own, to bring
your plight to the ordinary people of the world.
Lorne Hardy Langley
What have the French done for us?
IN connection with The
Mirror's recent hailing of France as a "superpower," does anyone know how much
food assistance or HIV/Aids assistance the French have provided Zimbabwe
It might be interesting to compare concrete French contributions to
Zimbabwe's needs, with those of other nations.
Just a thought..
THE worst kind of scenario has emerged in Zimbabwe.
citizens of Zimbabwe believed in the country's future until Mugabe started his
second term. Ian Smith left this country in a reasonable per capita
Mugabe is a useless dictator who has lost his brains and the
country is now characterised by violence, corruption, injustice, dictatorship,
inflation, rigging of elections, and political instability.
Popular anger at
the nation's rotten political system has continued to escalate in the face of
economic hardships. There is soaring unemployment, a currency free-fall and the
drying up of foreign currency reserves .
Mr. President, you must lie awake
anxiously thinking about the possibility of a social explosion. This is what you
should be thinking about Mr President, if you are carefully reading the reality
around you. The time when you would have manipulated the system may have gone.
We are dealing with reality now. All Zimbabweans were freedom fighters once and
now they are economic fighters.
I am reminding you Robert Mugabe that Moi
had to resort to farming at his communal home.
Grovelling Chinos' bootlicking grin
What's on air By Peter
SHOULD Chinos, the Taliban PF candidate for the vacant Highfield
parliamentary seat, miraculously win the forthcoming by-election, parliament
will complete its transformation into a circus. If Dead BC then screen live
parliamentary sessions whenever Chinos proposes a motion, viewers can look
forward to one of the greatest comedies ever.
Anyone who watched Monday's
Newshour as Chinos was at the airport being introduced to the Guvnor who had
just returned from one of his "major breakthrough" trips-as the Taliban PF
candidate for Highfield seat-will agree that the man looked every bit the
grovelling bootlicker he is. Fortunately for him, the false teeth he acquired to
fill the gaps caused by his missing ones lessened the impact as he grinned as
widely as he could for his master, the Guvnor.
But it was strange to imagine
that the servile Chinos, who just stood motionless, speechless and rather out of
place, preferring to let his grin do the talking, was the same man who once
boldly declared: "When you see Chinos, you have seen Mugabe!"
wonder, Elliot Manyika, obviously holds Chinos in high regard. He was shown
virtually pushing aside poor David Mutasa, The Taliban candidate for Kuwadzana
seat, to introduce Chinos before Mutasa had even finished his sloganeering.
Every time the Guvnor returns from one of his countless foreign-currency
squandering escapades abroad, rented crowds are bussed to the airport to welcome
him in a futile attempt to prove he is still 'popular' among his subjects.
At at time when the country's population is experiencing appalling poverty,
renting a crowd is no mean task as there are are many hungry people prepared to
do anything for a single decent meal, even chanting slogans in support of the
aging Guvnor as was recently the case.
So, while the Guvnor can loudly blow
his own trumpet and claim hollow-sounding, incredible diplomatic victories
against the West, especially the likes of Tony Blair, the fact remains: the
people are starving. Dead BC reporters can sing as loudly as they can about the
Guvnor's major diplomatic breakthroughs but what the people want is victory
against fuel and food queues and widespread poverty.
The 'Ibboring' Mandaza,
the only analyst from whom Dead BC cared to seek confirmation of the success of
the Guvnor's trip to France, described it like almost all his other foreign
trips, as a major breakthrough. Was Mandaza speaking on behalf of the other
'analysts' Dead BC reported as having hailed the Guvnor's success?
all the so-called analysts always give glowing, pro-government views on all
issues? Are there no people who disagree with government policy? Dead BC should
also grow up and stop labelling everyone who disagrees with government a member
of the opposition or an enemy.
Regis Mhako should go for reorientation
because his reporting antics are comical and absurd.
Last Tuesday, he
reported on the Bindura council's failure to repair roads. While the idea was
quite good, we suspect Regis tries to imitate some broadcasting idol, with the
tragic result that his fake, funny and loud voice makes his reporting appear
Mhako should be original. Imitators rarely go far.
listeners must have been greatly relieved to learn that the Chave Chimurenga
adverts are gone. They were taken off the air at the end of last month.
Let's hope that we never see or hear them again but I wouldn't count on it.
The Talibans might have something more sinister up their sleeves. It would be
interesting to know how much money was spent airing the offensive adverts, and
what they achieved.
Dead BC are already repeating the mini series, A Dance
With The Lions. We watched it quite recently, just like the other programmes
which they get as a token of thanks for buying certain programme packages. Does
Dead BC want to be a golden oldies channel like the Series Channel of Mnet?
It's back to basics with Channel O. Social Awareness is the station's theme
for March, whose programmes aim to remind Channel O viewers to take stock of the
good things in life and also lend a helping hand where possible.
has also put its weight behind the fight against Aids. It was scheduled to
screen the Staying Alive Concert on 7 March from 8 to 9:00pm. South African
mussos, Mandoza, Danny K, Zola and DJ Ready D were to join international stars
'P Diddy' Combs, Usher and Alicia Keys at the Green Point Stadium in Cape Town
to raise awareness about the spread of Aids.
Masamvu captures nation's adversity
THE pervasive despair and gloom that followed the controversial
2002 presidential elections is the focus of Misheck Masamvu's paintings which
are being exhibited at Gallery Delta.
The exhibition, titled Naked Mind,
opened on Tuesday and runs until the end of March. It showcases a wide range of
thought provoking paintings that highlight the plight of Zimbabweans who are
faced with a crippled economy and starvation. The serious political and economic
crisis which has resulted in uncertainty and hopelessness, with the attendant
shortages of food and fuel and hyper-inflation, are portrayed in Masamvu's
paintings which consist of oil being placed on canvas and then on a board.
One outstanding painting which aptly sums up the hopelessness of Zimbabweans
is called The buried And The living. It depicts the current scenario in which
Zimbabweans are leaving for greener pastures abroad while those staying behind
are "hooked in a situation from which they cannot escape". It is selling for $75
However, 22-year-old Masamvu castigated those leaving for countries
such as the UK and United States as being weak. "These people should be brave;
they should stay in the country and help find solutions to the country's
problems," he said.
Enough Against Want is another painting which will
capture the imagination. It depicts a situation whereby people no longer have a
choice but simply accept what they are given. The painting is going for $350
Punishing Elements encourages people to take risks in order to end the
adversities they are facing. "One must suffer and endure pain in the pursuit of
freedom, be it economical or political," Masamvu explained.
Masamvu was born
in Penhalonga and started painting professionally in 2002, after training under
the tutelage of Helen Lieros. He encourages other youths to take up painting as
a form of cultural expression.
Zim, Std - Comment
People's patience has run out
THE rains that
have pounded parts of Zimbabwe have once again exposed how this country is
ill-prepared to deal with any natural disaster.
"Cyclone Japhet" has
caused havoc in many areas including Muzarabani, parts of Masvingo and
Manicaland, but people and their livestock have largely been left to fend for
themselves, with little or no help at all from the authorities.
There is the
heart-rending story of two people who were marooned for two days on an island in
one of the swollen rivers in Masvingo, only to be swept away on the third day
because there was no help in sight.
The official explanation was that it was
too dangerous to try to rescue them because the river was too swollen and there
was lack of adequate equipment.
There was a time when the Zimbabwe Republic
Police, the army and air force could easily deal with such disasters as people
marooned on quickly dwindling islands.
But, as everything else in Zimbabwe,
standards have fallen very badly and authorities choose to watch helpless
villagers get ready to be swallowed by angry rivers because they themselves are
afraid of trying to render any help.
It is not only the issue of "Cyclone
Japhet" that has exposed once again the shortfalls of our national disaster
The government, like everyone else, knew that there was going
to be a devastating drought in the 2002/2003 season, but what preparations were
done to import food and distribute it? Zero.
It is the non-governmental
organisations-whom our ungrateful government berate almost daily-who have
instead set up quick reaction teams to stem the impending mass starvation.
While the government boasts that it is giving free food to millions of
starving villagers, the truth of the matter is that it is the NGOs who are doing
the actual distribution, who have done the calculations of where the food is
needed most and who have gone begging to the international community for more
What the government has done is to try to muddy the waters by
accusing some of the NGOs of playing politics, and allowing its own supporters
to try to take over the food distribution in some districts.
While in other countries citizens are assured of their
government's concern by the public show of ministers and senior army officials
flying into disaster areas, we have not heard of any government minister or
governor, for that matter, who has been seen flying or dropping off supplies to
There has also been deafening silence from President
Robert Mugabe, who obviously is very preoccupied with globe-trotting and
non-issues such as imperialism and neo-colonialism.
Of course Zimbabweans
cannot expect the aging Mugabe to be flying over swollen rivers, but they expect
leadership in such times of crisis.
The President should by now have
declared some sort of state of emergency, directed his armed forces to rescue
marooned villagers or at least send them food supplies.
He should be on
national radio and television consoling the victims, the marooned, their
families and relatives and assuring them that the state is doing everything
possible to rescue them or give them comfort such as food and warm clothing.
But of course we are talking as if we were in a civilised and normal state.
Sadly, we live in an absurd and abnormal environment.
Our national police,
instead of being used to genuinely help in relief efforts such as the
distribution of food and the rescue of marooned villagers, are deployed to
brutally assault women who are only demonstrating to commemorate the
International Women's Day.
The same police and army is used to attack
unarmed and helpless clergymen and women who are only asking the state to do
what it was elected to do: to respect the human rights of all Zimbabweans
regardless of political affiliation.
So while villagers are drowning and
their cries of help are ignored, and elderly women and mothers with children on
their backs are being brutally attacked, our President remains ensconced in his
Munhumutapa offices and State House content that he is doing the best for
But the President and the entire Zanu PF leadership should be
warned: the people's patience is wearing thin and has in fact run out.
Zany police of the 'normal' nation
overthetop By Brian
AFTER a traumatic Cricket World Cup, citizens of a troubled
central African country woke up to the fact that the biggest threat to the sport
was not from excitable members of the opposition, but from the country's Zany
And proving South African cricket guru, Dr Ali Baba and his
40 thieves incontrovertibly wrong, the Zany police showed the public that "low
profile policing" didn't preclude unlawful arrests, torture, assault and the
arrest of minors.
Still, citizens of the troubled central African nation
were permitted moments of deep pride. While their team's performance may have
done little for the country, the brave defiance of two players made everyone
unconnected with the ruling Zany party feel warm inside.
Not that the two
were treated well by their own bosses.
Still, the World Cup fixtures became
the farce Over The Top predicted they would. On the periphery of the matches,
Zany police raided churches, arrested spectators, beat people senseless,
tortured ordinary citizens and interrogated men of the cloth.
particular point, OTT has come to the conclusion that perhaps two prominent
would-be African dictators are right when they say life in the troubled central
African dictatorship is "normal".
The assertion, increasingly backed by Zany
disinformation minister, JoMo, is indeed true: the troubled central African
country is "normal".
Given events over the last three years, unlawful
arrests, police inaction, torture, unrelenting bizarre propaganda, the
suppression of democratic activism, police brutality, the passing of
unconstitutional laws and starvation are all "normal".
What would be
abnormal in the troubled central African nation would be a return to the rule of
law, the enactment of a progressive constitution and a head of state who shops
So Messrs Mbeki and Obasanjo, both of whom would love to be able
to behave in the manner of the most equal of all comrades, are perhaps correct
in claiming that normality has returned to the troubled central African country.
Still, it would be more accurate to say that Zany excesses and the abandonment
of any pretence at guaranteeing human rights has become normal.
it is now normal to be locked in a lice-infested cell without access to a
lawyer. It's also normal to have one's tongue and genitals wired to the national
grid before admitting you're an enemy of the state. And it's even normal to be
arrested for the crime of distributing roses in the street.
Nice, then, that
the cricket progressed so normally.
While the promised safety and security
surrounding players and officials was undoubtedly met, no promise of safety was
extended to fans-and predictably they were arrested, manhandled and mistreated
in their droves.
And well done to the ICC, the world governing body of the
sport. From the outset they said with conviction that the safety of spectators
wasn't their concern-and when spectators were arrested and tortured they
Not their business, after all. If the ICC did nothing else,
it told the world that money comes before morality in this game once played and
administered by gentlemen.
Still, it's all but over now and citizens of the
troubled central African dictatorship can sit back to a little more normality
until the next international event brings visitors to their uneasy nation. That
may be sooner than expected.
An arts festival in the More Drink Coming
controlled capital is planned in the near future. Anxious residents have told
OTT that they only hope that organisers and artists alike don't display the same
Yellow Streak as others they could mention.