Mnangagwa’s Command Agriculture: A ploy for the 2018 elections

ZANU PF has been successful in exploiting and suppressing Zimbabweans for nearly four decades because the nation has always been blindsided by the ruling party’s divide and rule tactics.

Source: Mnangagwa’s Command Agriculture: A ploy for the 2018 elections – The Zimbabwean 25.05.2017

Inorder for Zimbabwe to get rid of exploitation and suppression:

The nation needs to ponder its existence?

What does the nation have?

Where is the nation heading?

What kind of leadership does Zimbabwe have?

What kind of leadership does the nation want?

What can the nation do to change and get what it deserves?

Remember, direction determines the nation’s destiny; the journey starts now, for tomorrow is not unpredictable. And most importantly, Zimbabwe needs to remember that it cannot change what it refuses to confront.

The proposed Grand Coalition for the 2018 elections can be the greatest undoing for opposition politics in Zimbabwe. The major fear is a defeat to the opposition’s Grand Coalition in 2018 will put a final nail to the coffin of ailing opposition in Zimbabwe.

Instead of a Grand Coalition, opposition needs a grand strategy that takes into cognizance the past mistakes and come up with an anti-elitist strategy that resonates with masses, especially those in the rural areas.

Whilst opposition political parties are in a season of signing Memorandum of Understandings and bickering for positions within the anticipated coalition, Zanu PF is on the ground “convincing” the electorate.

Mnangagwa’s command agriculture is more of an election tool than a programme aimed at turning around the fortunes in the agricultural sector. The more the opposition political parties bicker about positions in an envisaged coalition the clearer the chances of losing in 2018.

Command agriculture will turn into a command election. The fact that Mnangagwa himself is leading the programme and process of command agriculture should speak volumes to opposition political parties. According to the information obtaining from the government, the programme is very well funded with the programme now expanding to the livestock sector.

Whilst the so-called success of the programme in the last season can be questionable, what cannot be questionable is the fact that beneficiaries like before will be determined along party lines. Command agriculture will justify why soldiers will be on the ground in 2018 because during the day soldiers will be on the ground promoting agriculture and during the night terrorizing villagers for political ends.

Therefore, the opposition needs to come up with a strategy that will counter Zanu PF propaganda using agriculture. Over 70% of Zimbabweans rely on agriculture for livelihoods and Zanu PF has taken advantage of that and has since time immemorial used agriculture and land as a tool for winning elections.

The opposition needs to capitalize on the weaknesses of Zanu PF in terms of land and agriculture to win the hearts and minds of the rural electorate who constitute the bulk of people who vote.

One strategy will be to promise farmers title deeds when the opposition is in power as well as to continue support the farmers through inputs and expertise on farming. The opposition needs to challenge Zanu PF on all fronts.

It is commendable the gesture taken by the MDC-T of challenging Zanu PF over the acquisition of campaign vehicles without paying tax to Zimra. This is what the opposition should always be doing than quarrelling over positions within the yet to be established Grand Coalition.