via Lack of brains hinders opposition, analyst – New Zimbabwe 04/08/2015
INTELLECTUAL bankruptcy and the lack of gifted thinkers is hindering Zimbabwe’s opposition which continues to be outthought and, failing that, outgunned by President Robert Mugabe and his Zanu PF party, a political analyst has said.
Zimbabwe Democracy Institute head, Pedzisai Ruhanya, lamented the intellectual poverty in the opposition ranks in an interview with NewZimbabwe.com on Tuesday.
“This is why the opposition in Zimbabwe is lagging behind. They are bankrupt of intellectuals,” said Ruhanya.
Main opposition leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, has faced Mugabe in a number of elections since forming the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) in 1999.
Mugabe has beaten him in the contests, often quite literally.
The veteran leader has several earned degrees and is, according to aides, a formidable intellectual. Critics however, quip that with his many degrees Mugabe still fails to take Zimbabwe out of the present mire.
The Zanu PF leader famously mocked his rival’s cerebral attributes and modest education, complaining that working with Tsvangirai in the coalition government was an agonising trial of patience since the MDC leader was semi-literate.
“We can’t be seen to be persevering with semi-literate people who just sit on their back-sides like (Morgan) Tsvangirai. Why should we? There are many with degrees,” Mugabe told mourners at the funeral of an army general in 2013.
“You see, an illiterate person who is aware that they are ignorant, you can deal with (them) better.
“You are better off with an ignorant person who is aware, conscious, of his ignorance, who accepts that he is ignorant.
“But if you are ignorant of your ignorance, it’s a huge problem.”
Ruhanya said the opposition’s inability to think and do so on their feet was evident in their failure to see what Zanu PF is doing through the digitalisation programme being spearheaded by Mugabe’s spokesman George Charamba.
“The ongoing digitalization program is an investment plan for the party’s future to remain popular among the people,” he said.
“Charamba is an organic intellectual for Zanu PF; so this digitalisation will promote their agenda as social media has diluted their information in rural and urban Zimbabwe.”
However, MDC-T spokesman Obert Gutu said if there was intellectual poverty in the opposition ranks, his own party was not among those consequently malnourished in terms of ideas.
“There are better thinkers within our party, and we are not sitting as MDC-T will soon brew a real shocker for Zanu PF,” he said.
“The party is not well-informed about the capacities and capabilities of (Zanu PF) and that is why MDC-T won the 2008 elections,” said Gutu.
Gutu said Zanu PF abuses State resources such as the Zimpapers and ZBC for its propaganda.
“This time we are not letting the cat out of the bag so whoever thinks we are dull is misleading the nation,” he added.