Ndakaziva Majaka 30 June 2017
VICTORIA FALLS – Spending too much time in leadership turns people evil,
National Assembly speaker Jacob Mudenda has said.
Mudenda told delegates at the on-going Zimbabwe National Chamber of
Commerce (ZNCC) congress here that leaders who consolidate power become
Without naming anyone in particular, Mudenda – who took over as leader of
National Assembly in 2013 – said it was only human for leaders who stayed
in power too long to act in a certain “unacceptable” way.
“So… when we discuss issues of corporate misdemeanours, let us
understand that it is a human phenomenon indicating the weakness of human
nature, anywhere in the world.
“And the more you get power, the more the devil comes closer to you. The
more you get power, the more the devil comes next to you and you begin to
do certain things that are unacceptable.”
Mudenda said the “temptation” was very common, and no one was immune.
“And there is no one who is not free from the temptations. Others are very
subtle, they survive until they die, but that doesn’t mean they have been
angels. They survive because of their subtle nature in their doings,” the
The advocate also said Zimbabweans were passive and needed to speak up
“Another very powerful force, outside the Executive and Judiciary to
pounce on those who have been found wanting by the parliamentary committee
is the people themselves, you the people.
“But the power of the people is more biting when they stand up and say
`enough is enough’, but that culture is not yet in Zimbabwe.
“It is there in South Africa, but in Zimbabwe, we are law-abiding citizens
to the extreme,” Mudenda said.
He gave examples of South Korea and Brazil, where the people had stood up
against poor governance and won.
“Take South Korea where the president was involved through a friend in
certain dealings the electorate stood up and said the president must be
prosecuted and she tried to cling to power with a host of lawyers but she
“She was arrested because of the power of the electorate, they
demonstrated against her behaviour,” he said, referring to former South
Korean leader Park Geun-hye ousted on charges including bribery, in a
corruption scandal that sucked in the country’s business and political
In a dramatic fall from power, Park, 65, became South Korea’s first
democratically-elected leader to be thrown out of office after rolling
protests against her.
She is accused of colluding with a friend, Choi Soon-sil, to pressure big
businesses to contribute funds to foundations that backed her policy
“You go to Brazil, it was a lady again and as someone said in one debate,
when you put women in positions of power they are less inclined to
corruption. But again, the electorate stood up and she’s out.
“Now, the deputy who has taken over, if you have been following CNN, is in
trouble because of what? The people! Who are saying we can’t condone this
type of behaviour,” Mudenda said.
Brazil’s top electoral court earlier this month dismissed a case that
threatened to unseat President Michel Temer for alleged illegal campaign
funding in the 2014 election, when he was the running mate of impeached
female President Dilma Rousseff.
The ruling gave Temer some breathing room but will not end a political
crisis enveloping the beleaguered centre-right leader. He is being
investigated separately by federal prosecutors for corruption, obstruction
of justice and racketeering.
Wading into Zanu PF factional fights, the Speaker also cautioned that he
was not part of the Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa-affiliated Team
“Sometimes when I give my thoughts on issues you hear people say `he is
Lacoste’ but that is not the case, it is just an issue of saying this is
wrong when it is…” he said.