The more things change….

via The more things… – DailyNews Live by Bill Saidi  13 SEPTEMBER 2013 

The last time I wrote a column for the Daily News was before I was promoted to editor of the Daily News On Sunday in 2003…10 years ago.

Most people devoted to the unfolding history in their country will remember those days…when there was tension between the media and the government…as there still is today.

Frankly, I can not imagine a smooth ride for any of us not in the government media with Jonathan Moyo back at the helm of the ministry of Information. I have never likened him to Goebbels and I am not about to now. But….

You might say this confirms that the more things change, the more they remain the same.

Zimbabwe is again tense today, as it was during those years. I know some people will insist that the tension was caused by people who would not “listen” to what is euphemistically called “the voice of reason” — that portion of society which insists that we must sing from the same hymn book, the disciples of the one-party doctrine.

This almost “decrees” that a nation must be united against “the enemy”, by following the political dictates of one group of people. In this political formula, any group of people which opposes this system is treated as an enemy of the State — they are alleged to be against everything that the nation stands for — sell-outs, lackeys of the West or nhunzvatunzva, a word I first heard used by the late George Nyandoro, during the heyday of the ANC.

Moreover, such people are tagged as malleable because they follow the advice of foreigners who have evil designs on the future of the country.

In other words, their campaign is to oppose everything that the first group presents as “the only path” for the nation to take, supposedly because it behooves all citizens to support this one doctrine propounded by this one leader and this one party — because it promises the people the path to a political Nirvana, in which all people will be provided with the wherewithal to develop themselves and  their families to a level unparalleled in the history of the country.

All this has been described, with sizzling pride, by some famous (?) people as “the dictatorship of the proletariat”.

The results of the July 31 elections, in which the “party yeropa” (as its more fanatical members call it) knocked out the stuffing out of the opposition right, left,  and  centre, confirmed, for many of us, one thing.

This was the determination by Zanu PF to inflict on this country the one-party State which was thrown out of kilter by the Movement for Democratic Change ( MDC) in 2000.

July 31 was planned as meticulously as all such evil plans are, to throw that opposition to the dust heap of history for an eternity.  

It would be absolutely incredible if all the reports, rumours and so-called “documented evidence” of chicanery before, during and after the elections turned out to be absolute hogwash. Something unpleasant — to put it mildly — did happen and it was not, by any stretch of the imagination, an election in which the winner won in a fair and square “squeaky clean”  exercise.

Someone belonging to the band of observers who seemed to have been briefed in their task by a tough breed of apparatchiks at “Shake Shake” building put it this way: the opposition  should appreciate that losing an election is not abnormal — certainly not the end of the world.

What was abnormal was to “whine and whine” about it long after the fact.

The suggestion was that all citizens should take the results calmly — people would win, but others must lose. The losers were not to whine, not just because they had lost, but had to accept the results because it was important for the nation not to plunge into turmoil because the losers would not accept defeat — for any reason.

A long time ago, again an election in this self-same Zimbabwe, a woman lost an election to this same ruling party.

She smelt a rat and went hammer and tongs against the result — and had it overturned by the courts.

This was Margaret Dongo, a war veteran and former Zanu PF MP, for whom I have always had the greatest respect.

She is now politically very quiet, but will remain in the memories of all who cherish real democracy and despise the notion that dissent is evil or “un-proletariat”.

She beat her former party at their own game in a 1985 by-election and lived to tell the tale.



  • comment-avatar
    Mine Supervisor 9 years ago

    Disappointingly MDC is finished! We will not vote for them because of their unclear policies. We will not vote for to simple maintain a multi party democracy- we need to have our wishes speak using the ballot. This time they tried every trick to discredit the election but it didnt work.

    It all started when they tried to have their own national voter registration, some were caught and arrested.

    They tried to print their own ballots, they were caught and arrrested.

    Sorry MDC guys, most of you are in politics for employment but I will rather vote for guys who have amased wealth long back through their successful businesses than for those who earned millions for shouting at every corner discrediting their own country-nhunzvatunzva!

  • comment-avatar
    Zvichapera 9 years ago

    Mine Supervisor you are a NHUNZWATUNZWA number one. I can never understand people like you who shameless believe in this regime, unless of course you’re benefitting from this chaos.

  • comment-avatar

    Good article there i must say. Its unfortunate that Zanu won whether by rigging or any explanation of freeness they claim but its also ironic that everyone can see the elephant in the room. Even their cronies, the AU and SADC could not salvage enough courage to declare the outcome fair despite their malandromy about credibility. Suffice to say that the election was like any other in Zimbabwe, a grotesquely unfair one.
    I ponder at anyone who claims that MDC is dead and that ZANU just made Zimbabwe a one party state.
    Its crazy to even think that cause even against the official ZEC results the ZANU party won over 2/3 seats but not all. MDC still remains relevant and despite any claims that they have been swept under the carpet it is unwise to think they do not command a huge following in Zimbabwe.
    Also given the landslide victory of ZANU its contrary to logic that only a handful citizens seem happy with the outcome or are celebrating. What is being observed is a population gripped with suspense and speculation of the next turn the economy will take on this bumpy ride. Politics is Zimbabwe is becoming more of a delayed match in which people know that ZANU will do everything to win and the people will suffer economicaly through their ill-gotten policies which defy logic.
    The new cabinet says it all. If anything its a club of senile man whose feebleness is undoubtedly evident. Things in Zimbabwe are quite predictable in that there is no confidence in the government and their sanctions rhetoric has been re-chanted again as if we did nt have sanctions during the GNU.
    Whatever the ideqlogy, its a fact that no party in the world can rig both politics and economy. We headed for another bump. Remember 2008.

  • comment-avatar
    VaChigabaziso 9 years ago

    It is true people have opinions but some o[pinions are not focused. Who on earth would believe thaty some individuals still think ZANU PF will deliver anything that will change Zimbabwe. They have been in power over 33 years and everyone is aware of this situation. In between the time theyb riuled, education once expam=nded and now we have the highest illeterate population in Africa taking into account the assisted votes. ZANU thrives on intimidation and blame. They blame the West They blame opposition. They blame all who are cruitical about Zimbabwean Situation.There will never be any rose. We have a ruthless government who have transformed Zimbnabwe into a limited company. Mugabe owns Zimbabwe and all the Zimbabweans are his. This will come to an end. The end is near although we will wait alittle long. Banda ended up in misery. This will be Mugabe as well. We have to watch and see how they are to solve the economic bombshell. They can make themselves rich but at the end of the day onone of us will take their wealth to the grave. The end is death for any being. Do not be fooled Zimbabwe is grieving and at the end of the grieving priod of the Zimabaean people those whjo made Zimbabwe grieve will begin to do so.
    What do you expect of Jonotani Moyo? His main aim is to silence Zimbabweans with his Mahoso.

    The Lord God will rescue Zimbabwe at his own time. Keep praying even for Matibiri,