Source: A reflection of the national pulse – NewsDay Zimbabwe November 22, 2017
The participation of the MDC-T and other opposition formations in the November 18 march resonated with public sentiment.
By WILTON MACHIMBIRA
In the field of politics, you need to understand public opinion and the mood of the people. Politicians need not be out of touch with reality as the result can spell doom for their political careers.
Dear reader, the reality is that every Tom and Jerry wanted former President Robert Mugabe gone. That’s the national pulse at the moment. Being labelled out of touch implies that someone is removed from what’s going on, they’re not informed or aware or they lack connections.
In the political context, to be out of touch is to be disconnected from what is happening outside of Parliament House and the rarefied bubble of politics.
With regards to the November 18 march, it has to be appreciated that the removal of Mugabe has always been an agenda of the opposition, so it is now Zanu PF championing the MDC agenda.
By vociferously calling for the ouster of Mugabe from the party and government, Zanu PF has vindicated the opposition. Underestimate the opposition at your own peril . . . they are being cautious with every wording, every statement and every action.
Let the gluttonous Patrick Chinamasa and Themba Mliswa expose themselves by their intransigence.
Let them share the so-called “Zanu PF cake”. The so-called transitional authority is no brainer . . . it will give life to a dying vulture.
Let their incoming President Emmerson Mnangagwa face MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai in the next watershed election and the former VP, who lost a parliamentary seat two times to Blessing Chebundo of MDC-T, will be history.
If he lost to little known Chebundo can he then win against Tsvangirai? Talk of Mnangagwa campaigning in Matabeleland, that’s a non-starter.
Mnangagwa doesn’t have a record of competence in as far as execution of government duties and responsibilities is concerned.
People are celebrating the fall of the strongman and not the elevation of Mnangagwa.
If you mistakenly assumed that it’s about Mnangagwa, then you need to brace for a rude awakening.
The march was rather a combination of spontaneity and planning, but at the end of the day no-one can claim credit for mobilisation.
The masses merely “rallied around their flag” which was under siege.
November 18 will be remembered as the day when Mugabe was caught on the receiving end of diplomacy.
The day when people across the political divide spoke with one voice against Mugabe’s rule that was bench-marked by corruption, mismanagement, patronage system and bigotry.
Divisions are a reality in any country, but there are also forces that unite countries and strengthen the populace because of a strong love of and loyalty to their country.
There exist centrifugal forces that pull people apart and centripetal forces that bring people together.
These forces can limit interaction, producing regionalism and creating dissimilarity among people of a country.
A country must have centripetal forces of greater magnitude than the centrifugal forces. Countries are susceptible to forces that divide or unite them.
Centripetal forces unite a country where centrifugal forces tend to divide. When the centripetal forces dominate a country, it will stand firm in the face of global challenges and struggles, as well as conflicts within their borders.
When internal centrifugal forces threaten to divide the country, the central government may break down and fail.
A strong and charismatic leader can mitigate this division. National institutions and symbols can also rally a country together in spite of division.
Nationalism, or the strong love of and loyalty to one’s country, is also a powerful centripetal force and can create solidarity among the populace.
Thus, the November 18 march should be viewed as a reflection of the national pulse but at this juncture we want our dignity, our decency, integrity and our credibility back as a people.
Our person-hood was at stake as plutocracy and oligarchy had become the order of the day, the hallmark of Mugabe-led government.
If we are to make a biblical reference Isaiah 10:5 God Himself declared that Assyria was the rod in His Hand that He used to punish hypocritical Israel. But Assyria did not know this.
They were lifted up in pride and thought they had accomplished their victory through their own power, saying “By the strength of my hand I have done it, and by my wisdom” (Isa 10:13).
The Assyrians thought they were invincible after defeating Israel and so felt confident to set their sights on the Southern Kingdom of Judah.
Rather than waste their strength and treasure in battle, Sennacherib, the King of Assyria, sent Rabshakeh as a messenger to secure Judah’s surrender. It is here they showed their “deliberate defiance of the living God”:
The bigger task lies ahead dear reader
Iwe neni tine basa/We all have a role to play.
Mutsa Murenje writes in his personal capacity