The political settlement in Zimbabwe cast victory in democratic elections as the principal rite de passage before power was to be transferred from the old regime to the new. The rules of the game have since changed since independence. The thrust of the liberation struggle was that popular elections were required not merely to elect a new black government but to confirm popular acceptance of the new constitutional order.
Source: A case for reforms ahead of the 2018 watershed elections – The Zimbabwean 25.05.2017
Indeed, Africa has millenia of history that we can not go into detail, but it has come a long way to become what it is today.
From a history of great civilisations, such as Great Zimbabwe, Egypt, Timbaktu, and others, to colonisation, and independence.
Great Zimbabwe, for instance, was a vibrant kingdom where everyone lived in prosperity as they all benefitted from its vast mineral resources, and trade with nations all over the known world.
It is widely believed that in the kingdom, everyone was regarded as equal, and as such, they were all awarded the respect they deserved and benefitted equally in the kingdom’s wealth.
Despite it being a kingdom, it was never as unequal and oppressive as the ‘off with his head’ European kingdoms of the middle ages.
African kingdoms were the epitome of what a modern and civilised society was meant to look like – that is why the greatest and most advanced civilisations of that time were found in Africa.
However, this did not last long, as slavery and colonialism set in – thereby, destroying any semblance of that great continent.
Eventually, the continent was liberated, and we now have mostly democratically elected governments.
Zimbabwe, having attained her independence in 1980, had Robert Mugabe as its leader.
Fast forward to today, any resemblance between Great Zimbabwe and the modern day independent Zimbabwe is gone.
Mugabe had proven to be a worse leader than the kings of Great Zimbabwe.
The country has had the misfortune – if not curse – to be ruled by a self-absorbed paraniod megalomaniac, who actually believes God appointed him to lead the country.
What a misfortune!
What this psychopathic mindset has resulted in, is a leader who not only brutally suppressed and dissent against him, but also believes all the country’s resources belongs to him and his family – and whonsoever he personally chooses.
He has become a reincarnate of the middle ages ‘off with his head’ kings of Europe – a far cry from the Great Zimbabwe kings who viewed their people with dignity and respect, and made sure they shared in the kingdom’s vast wealth.
Mugabe has instead chosen to copy the King Henry VIII’s of this world – as in those days, wealth was just confined to the king’s palace and his noblemen, whilst everyone else lived in abject poverty.
Mugabe has plundered all the country’s vast resources for himself and his family, as well as for his ‘noblemen and women’.
The vast majority of the people of Zimbabwe are living in.abject povert, whilst he lives in opulence.
An average Zimbabwean can not even afford a decent meal, as Mugabe has all but destroyed the economy with his psychopathic policies.
Industry and commerce is comatose in Zimbabwe, and workers are hardly paid, and are being retrenched daily, whilst school and college graduates are unemployable.
Schools have no books, which is leading to a whole new generation of the uneducated.
Similarly, hospitals have no medication, leading to unprecedented levels of the most preventable deaths.
Most cities and towns have been reduced to rural areas, as residents do not have access to clean and save potable water, as well as electricity.
City and town dwellers have to fetch water from boreholes, and unprotected wells, whilst trees are by felled eveywhere for cooking firewood.
To add insult to injury, Zimbabwe not only does not have a currency of its own, but also fails to even have sufficient stocks of other nations’ currencies, leaving the citizens without any money for their day to day needs.
Indeed, Mugabe has taken the country to the depths of uncivilisation, and yet he has the audacity to boast that Zimbabwe is the second wealthiest country in Africa.
Is that not proof enough that the man has long lost his marbles?
If this is how the second wealthiest country in Africa is like, then how would the poorest country in Africa be like?
The fact of the matter is that even war ravaged countries in Africa are faring better than Mugabe’s Zimbabwe.
Let no visitor to Zimbabwe be fooled by the beautiful buildings, which were mostly built during the colonial era.
Zimbabweans in those buildings are hungry and poor.
Mugabe has proven himself a complete failure and an embarrasment to the African continent as a whole.
The continent is now in another age of revival, yet he is taking Zimbabwe backwards.
Yet, when the citizens of the country express their dissatisfaction, he has them threatened, beaten up, tortured, arrested, abudcted, and even killed.
What type of a modern day leader does that to his own people?
I am sure if Mugabe had access to chemical weapons, he would have killed most of the citizens.
Africa now needs progressive leaders who will take the continent to the next level – it does not need outdated people like Mugabe.
Mugabe should now be disposed off to the annuls of history, as a failed deranged leader who turned a once prosperous ‘jewel of Africa’ into a basket case.
What type of a leader has a wife who can buy a US$1.3 million dollar ring, whilst the country’s people are starving?
Is that not insanity?
Therefore, the people of Zimbabwe has a splendid opportinity next year to finally rid themselves of this menace.
The age of the Idi Amins, and the Mobuto Sese Sekos has long passed, and so Mugabe should follow suit, so as to finally competely rid this great continent of any retrogressive dictatorships.
If only Zimbabwe had been ruled by someone who had the ambition of restoring the prosperity, equality, power, and dignity of Great Zimbabwe, this country would today be truly great again.
° Kudakwashe Sheddy Marangwanda is a UK based political analyst.