Biti praises Zanu PF - Zimbabwe Situation

Biti praises Zanu PF

via Biti praises Zanu PF – DailyNews Live by Lloyd Mbiba 9 MARCH 2014

MDC secretary general Tendai Biti could be in hot water after admitting his party lost to Zanu PF in the watershed July 31 elections due to poor electoral messages.

Biti, who was addressing a meeting of civic groups and academic leaders in the capital Thursday, had previously alleged they lost the polls due to massive rigging, claims outrightly rejected by President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF.

He was one of the most vocal proponents of a poll-rerun and alleged in an August 3, 2013 op/ed (reproduced on Page 2) that Zanu PF has “stolen this election to the extent that they themselves are so embarrassed”.

Biti spent months championing the cause.

MDC secretary general Tendai Biti reads the Zanu PF manifesto at an MDC rally ahead of the July 31, 2013 election while seated with MDC president Morgan Tsvangirai.

But on Thursday night at a policy dialogue held at the Sapes Trust in Harare as Zanu PF spurned MDC calls for another coalition and amid intensifying intra-party clashes over leadership renewal, the lawyer praised the Zanu PF campaign and claimed “we didn’t do well in 2013.”

His dramatic volte face, lavishing praise on Zanu PF’s campaign, has left his party to keep fighting over what it insists was electoral fraud anyway.

Zimbabwe’s longtime President Robert Mugabe won 61 percent of the presidential vote on July 31, followed by  Tsvangirai at 33 percent, securing the 90-year-old in power for 34 years, another five-year term in office.

Biti claimed Zanu PF’s “bhora mugedhi” message resonated with the electorate.

He said the MDC’s  economic blueprint dubbed JUICE – an acronym for Jobs, Upliftment, Investment Capital and Environment – launched by Tsvangirai at his 8th national policy conference held at the Jubilee Christian Centre in Milton Park, in Harare a month before the poll, was too complicated for the electorate.

JUICE aimed to make Zimbabwe’s economy robust once the MDC takes power by creating one million jobs by 2018, increasing economic growth rates exponentially, further reducing inflation, delivering a $100 billion economy by 2040, improving electricity generation and building a social contract.

The former trade unionist laid much emphasis on criticising Mugabe’s handling of the economy

Biti told the policy dialogue: “I think that it is important as Zimbabweans that the democratic movement has a message. The message of NO to the big man has been exhausted. Let’s have a message, messages are key.”

An attempt by the MDC to end the “big man” syndrome, where the winner of an election is all-powerful and virtually impossible to remove, has all but failed.

“Zanu in the last election had a very simple message, bhora mugedhi,” Biti said. “Even a little woman in Chendambuya or Dotito just knew one thing, bhora mugedhi. Perhaps we were too sophisticated, but what was our message because the message of change of 2000 is not the message for now.

“We were selling hopes and dreams when Zanu PF was selling practical realities. We (Zanu PF) are going to give you a farm, it’s there. We are going to give you $5 000 through (Saviour) Kasukuwere’s ministry.”

Biti said his party needed to marry the message of hope and immediate delivery if it is going to win an election.

“How do we transit and balance the message of hope with the message of immediate delivery?” Biti asked.

“I think we didn’t do well in 2013 (elections). A message is a slogan, it’s mascara and it’s a makeup. What is the substance? This is where we need to articulate an alternative value system.

“What was our position on indigenisation? We had JUICE, yes, it was good but trying to explain it to mai Ezra in Chendambuya, you understand what I am saying? So the issue of articulating an alternative discourse which is walked and lived is very important.”

Biti said the opposition movement needed to change its strategies because the political economy has changed. He said the 2013 elections proved that the message of change was now a hard-sell.

“We must learn from 2013 and the lesson from 2013 is that the political economy of Zimbabwe has changed dramatically,” Biti said. “Whereas in 1999 when the MDC was formed, 60 to 70 percent of the working people in Zimbabwe were in the formal employment, in 2013 and 2014, 84 percent of the population is in the informal sector.

“So whereas the MDC could be successful, formed on the basis of the structures that the labour movement had, there is hardly any formal workforce worth talking about now.

“The challenge with the informal sector is that it operates on prediction, it operates on patronage if you want to get a table at Mupedzanhamo (flea market) in Mbare, the local Zanu PF chairperson has got to give you. If you want a place to dig for gold in Chegutu, some Zanu PF official has to give you that.

“If you are cross border (trader) and you want to walk through the airport or the border post unchallenged, there has to be some patronage somewhere. The economy has changed and destroyed the social base that the official opposition relied upon.

“So, it cannot be business as usual. The lesson from 2013 is this, how do we respond to this changing political economy of the county.”

Aides and allies to Tsvangirai, where leadership has already been struggling to keep the party together on the poll fraud allegations that have precipitated calls for Tsvangirai’s ouster, were beside themselves. And once granted anonymity, they didn’t mince their words.

“Why is he admitting defeat?” fumed one senior Tsvangirai aide. “He’s a joke, plain and simple.”

Another aide said Biti’s comment “exposes how (we) have deliberately misled our constituents and the grassroots for  the past seven months. This isn’t leadership, it’s hypocrisy.”

A request for comment from Biti regarding the dust-up caused by his  remarks was not returned.

MDC leaders have passed their poll grievance to Southern African leaders with a view to review elections in Zimbabwe, to stage a dramatic fight over the issue, even if it cannot pass.

To be sure, observers say Biti is correct that the MDC did not  have an appealing manifesto as compared to Zanu PF’s, and of course the MDC president would never sign off on such a claim. But staunch MDC officials keep insisting on the poll rigging issue.

One insider said Biti’s statement, beamed on State TV for a record 10 minutes, was simply a tactical error.



  • comment-avatar
    Qiniso 4 years

    No suprises here. Mugabe is too old to rule…that was Tsvangson’s election cry.

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    As I said, something was smelling….

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    Nodi 4 years

    Biti must go now!

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    Kubota Binga 4 years

    Someone seeing sens now? Thank you. Messages that communicates vision are important. Just on this ZANU PF came out the better part. Bhora Mughedi…is followed by victory…makes a lot of sense. Juice? To me it just reminds me of Telecel’s mango package…or juicing a phone card, and most recently, juice has to do with anti-HIV tablets, so already a bad message…costing money, sadness etc.

    In 2000, MDC had a Good message, But ZANU PF had none, so they sanfg a song, that even I found myself humming it without noticing (Nhora). Nhora reminded people who had bought the MDC message of Chinja/Change, to think twice and consider what Zanu PF stood for, or just to knock ZANY PF in people’s minds thru music. Many Zimbabweans love music and Chinja as well fell short.
    So Biti’s assessment is what I would have accepted from MDC’s resoponse to the election result, not the insulting denial by Morgan.

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    Gus 4 years

    This is utter nonsense from Biti. We all know that ZANU manipulated the votes roll (which they have yet to release by the way) to win the election. I have lost respect for this man

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    John Thomas 4 years

    The election was rigged for sure. Everybody knows this. However ZANU lies did swing a lot of votes. Many more than ZANU anticipated. The lesson for all of Zimbabwe’s politicians is that lies win votes. So we can expect more of these from all parties. A large part of the electorate will believe almost anything.

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    tafirenyika itai 4 years

    Why all this now cde biti, why were you misleading us all along?.

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    Stingray 4 years

    And you were the sg at time who allowed a complicated manifesto to be sold to the voters. Do the noble thing resign and join zanu pf

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    Chaka 4 years

    Biti going insane.

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    Nyoni 4 years

    Always suspected something fishy. Who can you trust?

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    Africanson 4 years

    I look at Biti with a twinge of respect. He is one of the few amongst the MDC outfit who speaks from reason not from a partisan facult view. I just don’t like him for not being consistent in his deliveries as well as being crude in his choice of expressions when describing issues but outmately the guy has brains. Halft the time he says it like what it is. For real JUICE is not easy to lure voters than BHORA MUGHEDI. MDC took the country for a ride and the results are there for all of us to see. Morgan is and was always promising electorate suffering if they fail to get into power. And for real the people our suffering. I am not surprised that today MDc is celebrating the demise of the economy because Morgan said it at Rufaro stadium that tichashaisisa zvose kubva kene zvekudya nemabasa.

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      Ruramai 4 years

      Africanson, pointing out the economy is in dire straights as is obvious for anyone to see and as admitted to by the Finance Minister Chinamasa is not to say people are celebrating. Jobs are being lost everyday. It has to be said, it is being said and it will continue to be said, not just by the MDC-T but by many commentators. Get used to it.

      If the economy was performing, it would also be said. Get that?

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    Ruramai 4 years

    Accepting that Zanu P.F. had a simple message is not to say the election was free and fair. Is that so difficult to understand?

    If the election had been free and fair, the voters’ roll would have been freely available and Makarau would not have fought so hard to stop the opening of ballot boxes following the court challenges. Even pro-zanu p.f observers could not bring themselves to use the word fair, choosing in stead to use the term peaceful.

    It is as simple as that. Are memories that short? Are we loathe of politicians admitting to mistakes? It is those who are able to identify their mistakes and accept responsibility for them who can then work towards correcting them. It is the inability of our 34 year old government to accept mistakes that has brought this country to its knees.

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    NBS 4 years

    Did anyone in the MDC sell their souls to ZPF during this last election? If they did may they be exposed. Am I beginning to smell a very smelly rat?

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    Mandy 4 years

    There goes Biti again! If Biti is a democrat then he should fall on his sword. It is a fact that the anchor of any message is in the policies that underpin it.
    It is a fact that Biti was the chief policy adviser and that he alone assembled a team of failed policy ‘experts’ i.e. Pillany Zamuchiya, Toendepi Shonhe and Charles Mangongera to work on the MDC T blueprint. It is also fact that the JUICE aspect of the policies was first authored by his incorrigible friends Elton Mangoma together with Dr. Tapiwa Mashakada and was seriously contested by the more seasoned policy experts in the Prime Minister’s Office, the latter which dismissed the document as unappealing and not practical. In fact JUICE was just a unrealistic and too academic.
    It is also an incontestable fact that Tsvangirai was only availed the policy blueprint on the eve of the MDC T policy conference held at Sharon school in Harare, Milton Park.
    What do we learn from the above. Two important conclusions (1) that Biti does not understand what he talks about. Therefore his outbursts can only be motivated either by irrational thinking or (2) that he is power hungry and insincere.

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      Davy Mufirakureva 4 years

      Mabasa emutengesi. Anga akahwanda naMangoma zvino zvarwadza abuda pachena. Mmmmmmmmm a poor Biti.

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    Roving Ambassador 4 years

    Ruramai, you on the button .people must learn to read between the lines. Yes the election s were stollen ,but you have to look at other strategies used for you to be better prepared in the future.
    Self introspect, Shows Biti is waking up.

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    Edzai 4 years

    Biti is the secretary general of mdc. He is supposed to lead the direction of the party not to mislead it. His admission means that he must resign. There are many people who can be secretary generaral in mdc. If he wants to join zanu pf so be it. He probably is missing the perks.

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    Daniel 4 years

    No matter what you say or think the buck stops with Morgan.As usual his answer is I AM NOT THE ONE!!!!!!

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    To repeat what I said in a previous, the moment Biti said Gono was a man that cared about his country thats where the smell began for me. Gono was responsible for making thousands of Zimbaweans penniless with his policies. If he cared about his country he would of made sure that people got restitution , He done no such thing.Companies colasped because of this man causing massive unemployment. I have always maintained that the MDC was infiltrated, but I am shocked to the extent.

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    Madlanduna 4 years

    Biti I do not understand u now ! You are the one who took pictures of those pple who were bused into those poling stations, as referee you allowed 36 players against 11 to take the ball to the gate, uyinkinga mfana usugikile manje

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    laazuk 4 years

    The renowned legal academic, seasoned politician, liberator, Harvard Scholar Professor, Dr Edison Zvobgo once said, ” You cannot make smaller mind bigger by assigning a bigger responsibility.” At the momement the position of a Secretary General has become too big for a small mind Biti. You do not play with the people. The people of Zimbabwe are very angry about the stolen Election. Because you are saying the election was not stolen, you are against the people of Zimbabwe whose election was stolen, whose hope was shuttered. Therefore Tendai Biti has become the enemy of the people of Zimbabwe. The people of Zimbabwe are angry at you , they have lost hope in you. It is very difficult for them to forgive you. They can only forgive you when they forgive those who stole their election, those who stole their hope.

    My brother success in politics is not packaged in the courses you passed when graduated in Law, neither is it packaged in the legal cases that you or in the big and affluent clients like Gideon Gono. Success in politics he hidden in the followers. Its in the people who gave the Harare East constituency. If you have a bigger following, they can give you Zimbabwe. But you have denied the Zimbabweans, You are saying they lost, when in fact they won the election BUT IT WAS STOLEN. THIS MEANS THAT BITI IS IN THE CAMP OF THE ENEMY. THEREFORE YOU ARE THE ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE. YOUR REAL FRIEND IS GIDEON GONO and his faction.

    My question is, Why did Tendai Biti courageously wade into ZANU PF factional fights? Where do you belong? What happened during the inclusive gvt. Biti of the MDC-T died in the inclusive government or maybe Biti was swallowed by ZANU PF during the Inclusive gvt. Biti rava zuru rakapinda nyoka. Hapachina.

    Like I said in my previous arguements Tsvangirai needs a better team. Mwonzora hero basa. start to position yourself. I know that Kempton Makamure groomed you well. You are mature enough to take over. You wrote the current National Constitution. You rose through the ranks. There is nothing very unique about Biti which you do not have. In fact what Biti is starting now, you have done that already.


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    Rwendo 4 years

    Even if Biti was attempting to accept responsibility as part of the leadership, for an ill conceived campaign strategy, this was neither the time nor place to make such statements. Added to his praises of Mugabe and his about-turn on Gono, he clearly either has a huge, political blind spot, or else his motives are now truly suspect.

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    Charles Chamunorwa 4 years

    Biti-Great betrayal. Tell us where is the voters role Mr Biti? As SG of the party you were one of the policy makers and why blame others if you were part of the team? You are behaving like Zanu which blames everyone except itself. Where were you when those you blame were preparing JUICE and why didn’t you stop it at that time? You had a colourful political career which you are now destroying so easily.

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    Saddened 4 years

    At last we have a leader with the courage to admit that they were complacent & ill-prepared for the 2013 election. Notwithstanding this the election was not free & fair by any stretch of the imagination. The fact that the MDC went into the election without all the conditions of the GPA being fulfilled & that they didn’t have sight of the voters role shows they were overconfident & ill-prepared. Political immaturity in dealing with the likes of masters of deception i.e. ZPF, resulted in them losing. But what really matters now is how we are going to extricate ourselves from the current mess!!

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    sonofngwazi 4 years


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    easily fooled 4 years

    Now its obvious Biti and Mangoma do not want to start any political party, they have since joined ZPF. Biti represents Gono as his defence lawyer, Biti was quiet thru out Mangoma discussion….Biti says the suspension of Mangoma is null and void….and now biti is at it again. What a Zombie? You political career is finished bcoz you are not as intelligent as Jonathan Moyo

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    NBS 4 years

    I too am shocked at the depth of infiltration. MDC were truly caught with their pants down. How many got drawn in.

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    These guys are all over. They even infiltrated Pius Ncube in the church. That is why it is so dangerous to discuss politics in the streets or in shops. The only place that they can’t infiltrate is the mind. If you look back at how many times politicians have changed their tune after elections it becomes apparent. They knew every move MDC made. They now also have a problem now with people destroying them from within, hence the infighting.

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    Africanson 4 years

    To be in the opposition does not mean that u shut your brains from carrying its reasoning function. Biti is sounding an alarm bell that MDC needs to wake up and change strategy. The voters in Zimbabwe are not all schooled to read some of these economic jargon. I remember MDC coming up with all sorts of stories like we will do land audit, etc and ZANU simply said IVHU KUVANHU. That was in 1999. The general populace needs to be won first. Zvama land audits is a process inoitwa mahwina. Its a good thing to promise that to people but how many understand that? Does Juice sell better than bhora mugedhi? So in mdc wese ataura democracy and reason anofanora kudzingwa? Sska ichasara iri party yemapofu ega ega. Mahwindi lol.

  • comment-avatar 4 years


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    CHINDUNDUMA 4 years

    Biti knows for a fact that he has no future in the MDC. So this idiot being vulnerable outside the MDC has started campaigning for Zanu Pf. Biti go and join your handlers and make more money you Buffoon.

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    Msizeni silwelani 4 years

    Biti you only confirmed what a layman already knew. That the Zimbabwean electorate is swayed by propaganda than brand knowledge. “bhora mugedhi” is a slogan that cannot be turned into government policy. It is only in Zimbabwe that land belongs to a political party than the state fortunate for zanu they convinced even schooled people like Biti that they own land. Land redistribution can be carried out by which ever party that comes into power. Biti fell into the trick that only zanu can offer land. Hogwash. Promising an electorate money for their vote is tantamount to vote buying, a party pledging monetary rewards, look what has happened to the public servants. Biti says is okay.
    We trusted you as a chief negotiator, this is the outcome we get. After dinning with zanu you cann’t resist their bait, am disappointed.

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    Morris 4 years

    It is shocking that people fail to understand Biti’s simple message here. He said the truth, however, he did not say Zanu Pf did not rig. There are many facets to this fiasco and it is always a challenge to analyse it all in a goal so you look at pieces. The problem comes when some misread one aspect on a given piece. Extrapolation is also very dangerous especially when done by over suspicious people.

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    jobolinko 4 years

    No wonder why he said some unbelieveable words on live radio he is reckless ,Between him and mangoma they have no leadership qualities,and they have allowed to be used by zanu,all of a sudden the state media is allover them ,and they think they fixing Tsvangirai ,wasting time because mdc is not about them if its about money lets change our ways and move on

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    ma2zvi 4 years

    Biti must be praised for his frank confession about MDC-T’s weaknesses. The problem with most people in MDC-T is that they believe that the people of Zimbabwe are simpletons who do not need to be lured. They believe that the electorate is not analytical. Thats poor mentality. Do not be fooled by the large turnouts for rallies & conclude that its victory. Never! People attend rallies to learn from the horse’s mouth about whats-in-it for everybody. If you miss the point then you hve blown away all the chances to win. Come election day, it’s a rude awakening. Never assume that just because you’ve dared to oppose the most formidable political & revolutionary party in Zim then you will win. Be wise. Be tactiful. Be creative & imaginative in politics. You must think of the most unusual outcomes. That is why politicians campaign. Biti is right in being able to identify the cracks. If MDC-T behaves like a bunch of morons & keeps singing the tuneless song about vote rigging & stops brainstorming on feasible strategies, they will always help ZANU PF to stay in power forever. Mugabe admitted failure in his preparation for 2008/03 election & rejuvinated his structures. Biti speaks like a reviving political thinker. Buy his ideas & inrease your chances of convincing the electorate. People did not vote for MDC-T because of its glaring short-comings.

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    Wilbert Mukori 4 years

    The “message of (democratic) change of 2000 is not the message for now” says Biti. The truth is the message of democratic change is even more relevant today than it was in 2000. No there is nothing wrong with the message but everything wrong with the messengers tasked to deliver that democratic change – they have proven to be breathtakingly incompetent!

    Many people had viewed Biti as the natural successor to Morgan Tsvangirai whose breath-taking incompetence is now a matter of public record proved beyond any doubt. These people were giving Biti the benefit of the doubt that he tried but failed to stop Tsvangirai blundering from pillar to post. But his speech last Thursday should remove any lingering doubt that Biti is, in his right, a blundering and incompetent leader too.
    “I think that it is important as Zimbabweans that the democratic movement has a message,” Biti told his audience. “The message of NO to the big man has been exhausted. Let’s have a message, messages are key.

    “Perhaps we were too sophisticated, but what was our message be-cause the message of (democratic) change of 2000 is not the message for now.” What a load of nonsense!

    Zimbabweans are still suffering under the yoke of a corrupt and ruthlessly oppressive de facto one-party dictatorship. Mismanagement and corruption were bad in 2000, today they are even worse.

    The looting of the white owned farms that had just started has ended with Mugabe and his cronies owning most of the farms and the total collapse of the country’s once vibrant agricultural sector. This problem coupled with the country’s hyperinflation which soared to nauseating height of 500 billion in 2008 triggering the country’s economic melt-down. The country’s economy shrunk by a world breaking record of 84% in the six year period 2002 to 2008 pushing unemployment to break another world record of 90%.

    The economic melt-down had a devastating effect on the people; mil-lions were force into abject power and many have since left the country in hopelessness and despair.

    The message of democratic change was born out of the need to end the criminal waste of the nation’s material resources caused by mismanagement and corruption and thus end the tragic human suffering the waste had caused. The democratic component came out of the realization that the only way to end the mismanagement was to reform the country’s oppressive dictatorship that denied the masses a meaningful say in the governance of the country.

    The people of Zimbabwe elected Biti and his fellow MDC friends on the understanding they would implement the democratic changes agreed in the GPA. Without the reforms; Mugabe would rigged the elections as he had always done ever since Zanu PF got into power in 1980.

    Sadly failed to get even one reform implemented and long behold Mugabe rigged the elections. The whole world saw the bussed in voters. Nearly a million voters were denied the right to vote because Mugabe, with the help of the Israeli company Nikuv, tampered with the voters roll. Mugabe has stubbornly refused to release the voters roll because he knows it is the smoking gun to the rigged elections.

    Mugabe blatantly rigged the July 2013 elections and there is a mountain of evidence to prove. One of the tasks of a truly democratic government in Zimbabwe will be to comply all the evidence of the 2013 rigged elections so that the history record is put right and those responsible to this treasonous act are held to account!

    “Zanu in the last election had a very simple message, bhora mugedhi,” Biti said. “Even a little woman in Chendambuya or Dotito just knew one thing, bhora mugedhi..

    “We were selling hopes and dreams when Zanu PF was selling practical realities. We (Zanu PF) are going to give you a farm, it’s there. We are going to give you $5 000 through (Saviour) Kasukuwere’s ministry.”

    This is an insult to the people of Zimbabwe; because none of them were naïve to believe Mugabe could deliver any mass economic prosperity when all he ever delivered was mass poverty. Zimbabwean are a hard- working people and they would accept a political solution that offers them an opportunity to earn an honest wage than Kasukuwere’s $5 000 pie in the sky.
    Morgan Tsvangirai and other MDC leaders accept that the July 2013 elections were rigged but have been careful to avoid mentioning that it was their failure to implement the reforms that mage it ease for Mugabe to rig the elections. Tendai Biti is taking this erroneous position one step further by pretending Mugabe had a “simpler message” that appealed to the Zimbabweans who no longer care about democratic change.

    The truth is the need for democratic change is more urgent than ever; there is nothing wrong with the message it is the incompetent messengers who are to blame. Having failed to deliver the changed they now blame the message!

    The ease with which Mugabe rigged the July 2013 elections underlines once again why it was folly to have held the elections without implementing the reforms. It would be madness to hold yet another election with no meaningful reforms.

    If the people of Zimbabwe are serious about free, fair and credible elections then they must insist that all the democratic reforms agreed in the GPA must be implemented. The nation now knows that Tendai Biti, Morgan Tsvangirai and any of the other MDC leaders will never get any of the reforms implement! They never saw the need to implement the back in 2009 and they still do not see the need today.