The ZIMBABWE Situation Our thoughts and prayers are with Zimbabwe
- may peace, truth and justice prevail.

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Zim, Std
Trip to France, Asia: waste of resources
By Chido Makunike

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 successful ever."
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!
France 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 problems.
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 Zimbabwe,blah,blah,blah.
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 currency.
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.
Mr 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.
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Zim Std
Mugabe, George W guilty of posturing
americannotes By Ken Mufuka

By the time you read this letter, American bombs will probably be raining down on Iraq like hailstones (zvivhuramabwe). I will write more about this below.

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.
The 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 damage'.
Politicians are made of the same cloth. Some are just far worse than others.
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Zim Std
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 empty-handed.
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.
Patriotic Zimbabweans have long ceased to be fooled by Mugabe's utterances.
Isaac Matongo
National Chairman, MDC
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Zim STd
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 people.

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 of Gushungo.
Chisangapere chinoshura. Uchaenda chete.
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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, Canadian.

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
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Zim Std
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 with?

It might be interesting to compare concrete French contributions to Zimbabwe's needs, with those of other nations.
Just a thought..
Nemo Jederman
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Zim Std
THE worst kind of scenario has emerged in Zimbabwe.

All us 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 state.

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.
Angry citizen
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Zim Std
Grovelling Chinos' bootlicking grin
What's on air By Peter Moyo

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!"
But one-hit 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?
Why do 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 comical.
Mhako should be original. Imitators rarely go far.
Viewers and 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.
The station 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.
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Zim Std
Masamvu captures nation's adversity
By Langton Nyakwenda

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 $75 000.
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 $350 000.
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.
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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 preparedness.
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 food aid.
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.
Back to "Cyclone Japhet".
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 marooned villagers.
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 Zimbabweans.
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.
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Zim Std
Zany police of the 'normal' nation
overthetop By Brian Latham

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 police force.

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.
On this 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 at home.
SoŠ 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.
After all, 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 remained silent.
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.
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