THIS week, the nation was delighted to learn that one can simply walk into our military facilities and emerge with combat gear.
Making the announcement at a press conference, the police and the army spokespersons Charity Charamba and Overson Mugwisi respectively told the nation that all those people that we are seeing in army uniforms on the streets are mere civilians who somehow managed to relieve our great army of its uniforms.
“Some of these uniforms worn by criminals were seized by rogue elements during the recent riots in Epworth and Chegutu,” police spokesperson Charamba said. Unsurprisingly, they did not entertain any questions from pesky journalists after revealing this pearl of wisdom.
We have always known that we have many fake things in the country, from counterfeit CDs to even counterfeit election results. But we had no idea that piracy is so bad that we now even have counterfeit soldiers.
Clearly, these Epworth criminals are something else. They have graduated from breaking into houses to a whole new level. All those helicopters that we all saw buzzing over Harare last week were being piloted by these random chaps from Domboramwari and Overspill in Epworth.
Zimbabweans were this week pleasantly surprised to discover that the country’s justice system can actually arrest, convict and sentence looters and thieves in a very short space of time.
Up to this week, we had always been told that the wheels of justice turn very slowly, especially in cases of theft. In fact, some people arrested for theft in 2017 are still to stand trial. When the povo asked why, we were scolded for our ignorance of the intricacies of the justice system. One does not get arrested, get tried, and get sent to jail overnight, we were lectured. These things take time.
Well, lo and behold, the povo this week witnessed our prosecutors and magistrates in fine form, professionally executing their duties, sending thieves away. This came as a relief to the public, who had lost faith in the justice system.
We are happy to see looters of salt and bread being arrested and swiftly jailed. Now we await to see those who looted diamonds and public funds getting similarly swift justice. We wont though take the risk of holding our breath.
Speaking of our justice system, Muckraker wishes to congratulate Kumbirai Hodzi for his appointment this week as the new Prosecutor-General (PG). It is an important job.
In his role, Hodzi will be in charge of sending all criminals to jail, which would make him a busy man if he does even half his job. Until this week, President Mnangagwa seemed unsure as to who to appoint to the post. In fact, it was reported that he had rejected an initial list of potential candidates, and demanded a new list. He was obviously unhappy with everyone on the short list.
But then, this week, Hodzi did something that won him the job. Asked to comment on the army shooting people, he declared: “I know no such case of a law-abiding citizen being killed, that is as far as I know.”
It is at that point, one assumes, that our new owners erased all doubts and made-up their minds as to who to appoint as the PG. Anyone that is ready to turn a blind eye to state abuses, even without investigating it first, is just the right man for the job.
In a country short of genuine entertainment, one can always turn to Energy Mutodi who delivers week on week.
He went on a rant this week after seeing a tweet showing Mnangagwa in a pose that brought about much mirth during his recent begging spree to Europe. It was photoshopped, he claimed prematurely, only to be told that it had be shown on the propaganda broadcasting station ZBC. This was after his ridiculous comment on ZBC last week. Asked if the government had shut down the internet, Mutodi told the world that congestion had caused the blackout. Just moments after his appearance, one of the biggest network providers came out and told everyone the truth; they had been shut down by the government.
We didn’t hear from Mutodi after that, save for a few equally demented tweets. This is what happens when rhumba artistes become ministers by accident, just because they gave the president a mug. When you switch your career too quickly, sometimes your brain gets left behind in your old job. For Mutodi, his body is in the office of a deputy minister, but his mind is still stuck in a cheap rhumba bar, somewhere in the sleazy Kopje area.
Mutodi is not the only one whose mind is stuck in the past. In fact, Mutodi is not the only one who rates themselves higher than they should.
George Charamba made international headlines when he warned that the brutality of last week was merely a “taste of things to come”. Just the sort of stuff that a President telling the world that he is a democrat who is “open for business” needs. Having congratulated himself for making his boss look as foolish as possible, Charamba went about looking to inflict even more damage on the president.
“It emerged yesterday that three African states; namely Zimbabwe, Sudan and DRC were supposed to fall within a week as part of United States’ aggressive plan against the continent,” The Herald quoted Charamba as saying.
Of course, don’t you all know that a Zimbabwean needs to be told by America that they are hungry? If America didn’t tell them they are unemployed, a Zimbabwean would go around telling themselves that they have a job. Unless a foreign superpower tells them, how could they not possible notice that they cannot afford a loaf of bread? Dumb Zimbabweans.
No easy walk
It was never going to be easy for Finance minister Mthuli Ncube to try and sell Zimbabwe at the World Economic Forum that ends today in Davos, as a safe investment destination to people who have cellphones and TVs.
Of course, they had seen all the images from Zimbabwe. Which investor puts his money into a country where soldiers, real ones or those from Epworth, occasionally shoot civilians for fun, and where the internet can be shut down at the whim of a minister who doesn’t appear to have a clue about his job description?
And yet, here was Mthuli going around the TV channels and telling everyone that everything was all right. The protests, he said, we all pre-planned and had little do with the fuel price hike. In fact, he said in one of his numerous interviews, the protests were “part of the painful reforms” that he was making. It’s a good thing that interviewers on CNN, Bloomberg, CNBC Africa, among others, are not your slavish Judith Makwanya types on ZBC. They ask real questions, not this: “what measures are you putting in place honourable minister” stuff our government officials are subjected to on the lickspittle national broadcaster.
Faced with hard questions about shutting down the web and killing folks for sport, Ncube’s fine brain froze in all that snow in Davos.