Mujuru’s paradigm shift

via Mujuru’s paradigm shift – The Zimbabwean 8.9.2015

I think by now most of us have read People First’s manifesto launched by Joice Mujuru today.

At face value it’s a good document where the authors seem to have carefully thought through a lot about what is wrong with Zimbabwe and how it can be corrected. That is good news indeed.

We will of course be testing their integrity as time goes on, but for now let us give them the benefit of the doubt.

Critical to the success of any future policies in Zimbabwe will be the creation of inclusive and accountable institutions. This will not happen overnight. We have to destroy the culture of patronage and entitlement and that will require that if Mujuru were to become President, she must deliberately surround herself with smart people who are free to continually challenge her to do better. The biggest danger we face is that she will surround herself with people whom she is comfortable with (that is to say deadwood or yes men) and we know the problem with that.

First, Zimbabwe belongs to all its citizens regardless of where they may be at any particular time. That is good. Second we have to put back value in our land assets by creating secure tenure. Third we need to promote free enterprise and repeal the indigenisation laws to be replaced by broad based and reasonable empowerment policies. This must not be at the expense of job creation.

Fourth we must heal Zimbabwe with all the sincerity it deserves. Our society has been abused for the last thirty six years it is shocking. That abuse has been meted out by state institutions including the police. That must stop. We will require a new paradigm of policing. Fifth we must deal brutally with corruption and lastly Zimbabweans must benefit from the revenues of our national minerals resources.

The manifesto covers all these issues.

I like the idea of establishing a Presidential advisory think tank. You see, good leaders surround themselves with smart people and they allow these people to tell then what to do. The prescriptive culture of leaders who play little gods is no longer viable and leads to disaster as we have seen with ZANU (PF).

Also important will be the avoidance of the silo mentality where each ministry acts independently without regard of how its policies and actions affect other ministries. This is old thinking. We will need a holistic approach to the management of the business of government so that each cog acts in alignment with national objectives.

We must also create structures that give consistent and honest feedback. Unfortunately the manifesto is silent on local government and devolution of power. The delivery of democracy must happen at local level where communities participate in building their own neighbour hoods. This will bring delivery and accountability to the people on the ground. The idea that all the answers lie at State House must be rejected with the contempt that it deserves.

We also want to see all senior government officials declaring their assets publicly before they join government. The issue of conflict of interest must be taken seriously. In my opinion, no government official should be allowed to do any business with government. Transparency of leadership will therefore be key.

We must also deliberately put incentives in place to attract Zimbabweans in the Diaspora back home. This requires some soft landing mechanisms to be in place to attract the right people back.

As we create a new Zimbabwe we need to put human capital development at the centre of our economic and social policies. Zimbabwe can only live up to its full potential when we create an environment that nurtures and develops our people to their full potential. The meeting of basic needs such as education, access to clean water, affordable decent housing, affordable and accessible health services and consistent energy supply will be critical for citizens to develop to their full capacity in this lifetime.

Of course we are yet to see the specific sectorial policies of People First, but there is no shortage of good ideas that have been ignored by ZANU (PF). It will therefore not be difficult task.

Economic freedom, free enterprise without a government that interferes, freedom of association, access to information and the right of every citizen to pursue happiness are enshrined in our constitution and seem to be taken seriously by People First.

In my opinion the People First manifesto is an excellent start. What will matter most will be the people around it.

We need a multiplicity of views and opinions if we are to turn around Zimbabwe and develop a vibrant inclusive economy underpinned by human rights for all.

I trust that we will continue to critically look at ourselves as a society, challenge moribund paradigms that we have suffered under ZANU (PF) and do our best to create a much better future for our children’s children.

Nothing is impossible!

Vince Musewe is an economist and author based in Harare. You may contact him on


  • comment-avatar
    mandevu 7 years ago

    Hhhmmm really?

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    Nyoni 7 years ago

    I never was a fan of the hippo given her stance when she was on the right hand side of Bob the pillager or horrible whichever way you want to take it.She never said anything concerning the suffering of us all at the time. If she or her type want our support then they must beg for it.Because we wont be running to them unless we are blind or plain dum.

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    Reverend 7 years ago

    I believe Mujuru will be more of the same stuff…we need total change in Zimbabwe, and complete freedom from the old demons.

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    Michael 7 years ago

    There is one unfortunate in Zimbabwe – everyone wants to be president and rule the roost and the opposition to Mugabe is fragmented because of personality issues.

    That is the sole reason for the survival of Mugabe and his band of crooks who specialize in looting of the country.

    Now there is a new political party in the making – and that is People First. Will they be producing anything more than words on paper? I doubt it very much.

    The answer is that like-minded people – whether of recent change in attitude or longer-lasting opposition supporters – should get together and take the battle against the dictatorship on together and not struggle on their futile own.

    The sooner there is a Grand Coalition against the dictatorship the better. Once that is in place, the Mugabe clique can be taken on and the system of government can be changed. There will be culprits in any new environment as well and those can in time be eliminated.

    Tsvangirai, Biti, Mujuru and other lesser “political leaders” should realize that and start working together to achieve a better Zimbabwe.

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    Mazano Rewayi 7 years ago

    The Manifesto is a good start but the real work is still to begin. Dismantling the current system needs clear policies and collaboration. In this vain all parties must articulate their visions and on the basis of this form a Grand Coalition that fields ONE presidential candidate against zpf. The Grand Coalition should never be a “single party”. pluralism in a post zpf Zim is as important as unity before that outcome. Never again should one party dominate us.

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    Charlie Cochrane 7 years ago

    This commentary sums up why zimbabwe is in the current foul condition.
    Idiots, simpletons, cowards who would ‘forgive’ mujuru nay even support her, a woman who has worked hand in glove with mugabe (satan’s child) for 34 years, complicit in the total destruction of a once beautiful cou try and the eradication of democracy, a woman who has made billions of dollars through corruption whilst people were being disenfranchised, dispossessed,disappeared,brutalised and murdered……and you people would even consider her a potential president!? She should be put on trial and imprisoned for life along with all her zanu cohorts!
    God help you people, a nation of gutless cowards and morons who truly do ‘get the government you deserve.’

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    jayadhara 7 years ago

    NO!the manifesto can be good but why today?? Remember these pple were there 34years ago,wining and dining with Bob.these old horses must go to hell.mujuru as vp was suppose to advise Bob bt she didn’t.why today??come 2018 mujuru surrounded by r.gumbo and mtasa.what a laughing stock.varume tisaita chiringa kuvarairwa tichifamba.

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    CAN’T any body see this is Mugabes succession plan going into action and everybody is falling for it hook line and sinker If (spill blood )or what ever her name is gets to be PRESIDENT we can all forget about the accountability of the previous government (THE LAND THE ATROCITIES THE MURDERS THE CORRUPTION EVERYTHING WILL BE FORGIVEN AND FORGOTTEN)and continue that is exactly what our present leader WANTS.Don’t be fooled SHE is a carbon copy and is trying to say the right things now( WAKE UP AND SMELL THE ROSES YOU GULLIBLE FOOLS )

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    People must make sure that there is a changes in Zimbabwe not to tell us lies

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    Chanisa 7 years ago

    A successor to ZanuPF, if one was to come, would only come from ZanuPF. They hold the power and knowledge of the institutional terrain; they have articulated everything in Mujuru’s manifesto, but have failed in implementation due to unchecked, unbridled prerogatives and a tendency by our people to bestow chieftainship even on elected functionaries (personality cults). We now need less leadership, not more, and Joyce presents such a possibility. It’s not unknown for revolutions to be powered by dissenting members of the establishment. She certainly can carve out sufficient chunks of support from both the MDC and ZanuPF to come out largest or, at best, provide wider checking mechanisms through fragmentation of Parliament. Zimbabwe needs at least three robust parties of comparable strength to adequately cover the political spectrum. Yes we are angry and want someone’s pound of flesh. Her ascendancy may provide a smoother transition to a more balanced, tolerant society devoid of destructive vengeance and traumatic counter-revolution. To me she is a welcome new player in a field littered by tired egomaniacs. Give her the benefit of the doubt, unless there is a better option.

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    Yawn. Yawn. Smith was right.

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    Muguru is less brutal and dead-donkey than the present dictator

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    guys lets nt forget that all these oposition politicians came from zanu pf with mujuru she was fired bcoz she tried to save our country by becoming the president of our country at the zanu pf congress so lets respect her for seeing the light viva mai mujuru viva

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    Open Eye 7 years ago

    All items posted here are for the 8th of September – Is this April fools day or what??