Saturday, 16 December 2017

"US trip was about free elections but not sanctions," insist Chanisa - his take of Chiwanga coup that was not a coup N Garikai

Nelson Chamisa, MDC-T VP, is one individual who believes in rhetoric and has become so addicted to it he cannot change. MDC is the party of excellency! he used to boast. It took the disastrous performance of the party in the 2013 elections, which he and others were convinced was going propel them into office, to shut Chamisa up. The party was deserted by its donors and SADC leaders alike for failing to implement even one democratic reforms during the GNU. The real Nelson Chamisa is back boastful as ever.

I am so delighted to be on this hugely beneficial trip (to the USA to meet the Senate committee on foreign relations the committee that will decide on whether to lift the targeted sanctions imposed on Zanu PF leaders for human rights violation including failing to hold free and fair elections). We are on this vital global advocacy and diplomatic engagement program to give Zimbabweans a fighting chance in the crucial and landmark 2018 general elections. This trip is about you and me and the future of our children and generations to come, he wrote in a recent article in Nehanda Radio.

As a people, we cannot afford to squander this merited goodwill through partisan and petty party political sandpit arguments, which have no material benefit to our people.

The article continued on the same vein, full of the usual verbosity and drumming of the chest of the silver back. Let me just focus on one or two snippets.

This trip comes as a continuation of diplomatic outreaches already under way focusing on SADC and the AU. Our overall persuasion and perspective is to state and restate our case for credible, free and fair elections in Zimbabwe, elections whose results are not contested, he stated.

I saw and read a false message that this trip was about sanctions. Far from it, the trip has all to do with our take on free and fair elections in Zimbabwe and our post-election reconstruction plan.

This is really hopeless! No wonder the country is in a real mess, with the opposition politicians who are this incompetent, we have nowhere else to go.

This is just like the foolishness of General Chiwenga and his coup plotters who seized key state institutions, put then President Mugabe under house arrest, etc. and insisted it was NOT a coup! The West imposed sanctions on Zanu PF leaders because the regime had failed to hold free and fair elections. The Senate committee Chamisa and his friends met will decide on whether to lift the sanction or not on the basis of there being sufficient evidence next years elections will be free and fair. So, what is Chamisa wittering about the trip was not about sanctions!

Zimbabwe is in this economic and political mess because for the last 37 years the nation has been stuck with a corrupt and incompetent Zanu PF dictatorship. The have failed to rid themselves of this regime because Mugabe and his cronies rigged the vote to stay in power. The nation had its best opportunity ever to finally get rid of the dictatorship during the GNU years but the chance was wasted because Chamisa and his MDC friends failed to implement the democratic reforms. If anyone thought the MDC leaders had learnt from the past, he or she was wrong because instead of finally focus on piling the pressure, maintaining the sanctions is one way, to force the implementation of the reforms MDC leaders are once again going off at a tangent.

SADC leaders pushed hard to have the reforms implemented during the GNU and it was none other than MDC leaders who did nothing. The American and the rest of the West imposed sanctions on Zanu PF to highlight the need for Mugabe to honour his legal obligation to hold free and fair elections. It is really frustrating that it is none other than the MDC again who failing to give the matter the seriousness it demands.  

“MDC is a party of excellency!” Yeah right!

US Senators not impressed by Biti & co failure to answer a simple question W Mukori

It was USA Ambassador to Zimbabwe who said, in a Wikileak, Tsvangirai was “a flawed and indecisive character”. The Ambassador singled out Tsvangirai as the leader of the MDC but he could have said the same of all the other opposition leaders. Last week the American Senators had first-hand experience of just how incompetent and indecisive Zimbabwe’s opposition can be.  

The US Senate on foreign relations committee invited Peter Godwin, a Zimbabwean author and journalist, and a posse of MDC Alliance members to ask them a simple question: Should the US lift the targeted sanctions against the Zanu PF regime or not? The sanctions were imposed on targeted Zanu PF leaders in 2002 to force the regime to stop serious human rights violence including failure to hold free and fair elections.

Without exception, each Zimbabwean gave a factual account to show that nothing on the ground had changed to justify lifting the sanctions. Peter Godwin then gave the Senators an earful of feeble excuses why the sanctions should be lifted. At least Peter was decisive. Tendai Biti and his fellow MDC Alliance members could not be more ambivalent, they would not give a straight yes or no answer. They insisted, they were there “to re-engage”.

So, the Americans had gone to great expense both in treasure and their valuable time to get these Zimbabweans to Washington only to learn just how indecisive Zimbabwe’s opposition members are and thus confirm something Ambassador Dell had said back in 2004.

I have said it 1 000 times and know will say it 100 000 times again that Zimbabwe’s opposition politicians are breathtakingly corrupt and incompetent. Just to prove this point the opposition members who were not invited to go to Washington would too have shown just how confused and lost they are on the same subject of sanctions.

"The US can't reform our electoral system. The fight has to be taken to Parliament to ensure the Electoral Act is aligned to the Constitution. We need to enforce ZEC's obligation to make public the voters' roll. We need to monitor the voter reg \ voting process for irregularity," tweeted Fadzai Mahere, a prospective Mt Pleasant independent candidate for next year’s elections.

Ever since Mahere set her eyes on the parliamentary seat, her brain (assuming she had any to start with) has turned into mash. She has been told a million times that without implementing the democratic reforms first, there is no hope of next elections being free, fair and credible. She is paying lip service to calls for verified voters’ roll, for example. Even with the best will in the world, there is no way ZEC can register 7 million voters from scratch in four months and then produce a verified voters’ roll in the remaining four or less months.

Mahere, like the rest in the opposition camp, will contest next year’s elections even without something as basic as a verified voters’ roll. After all she and the rest in the opposition are fight over the few gravy train seats they know Zanu PF will be giving away to entice them to contest the flawed elections. When it is the scraps you want, you do not care how they are served.

Yes, madam Mahere, the Americans are not going to reform Zimbabwe’s electoral system but how is a Zanu PF controlled parliament ever going to it? Zanu PF is going to rig next year’s elections to retain its dominance and, by participating in the flaw and illegal process, the opposition are foolishly giving the process credibility.

"Hon Misihairambwi has moved a motion in Parliament which l have seconded to debate the merits of a transitional government. This is where MDC should be concentrating their efforts in order to put their points across, not globetrotting. We look forward to the debate," tweeted Mliswa.

The hon Misihairambwi was an MDC cabinet member is the last GNU in which the MDC had the majority in cabinet and in parliament and yet they failed to get even one democratic reform implemented in five years. If MDC failed to get any democratic reforms implemented during the GNU what hope is there of getting any now in a Zanu PF dominated arrangement!

Misihairambwi contested the 2013 elections with no reforms in place because, like everyone else in the opposition, she was confident of winning. This time the opposition camp has become very crowded and she knows that her hopes of winning any scraps this time are considerably reduced, especially someone like her with precious little to show for all her years in parliament. She is hoping another transition arrangement would postpone elections and extend she stay on the gravy train by another year or two!

President Mnangagwa was free to invite Misihairambwi  or anyone else from the opposition he wished into his cabinet. What he could not do is use the coalition as an excuse for postponing next year’s elections.

Zanu PF must hold free and fair elections next year or set down. If the elections are not free and fair, all signs are that they will not, then the results will be judged null and void. The people of Zimbabwe; with the help of SADC, UN and the international community; will then decide what transition administration will be required to take the country forward. President Mnangagwa and his Zanu PF cronies cannot be dictate what happens next or expect to play a leading role, if any at all, given they wasted the same opportunity during the last GNU.

As for the MDC opposition leaders had the golden opportunity to implement the democratic reforms during the GNU; the nation would not be in this mess if they had not wasted it. The nation would be spare the agony of yet another utterly pointless because, with not reforms, Zanu PF will just rig the vote as before.

Zimbabwe has had the great misfortune to a corrupt and tyrannical ruling party like Zanu PF but having a corrupt, incompetent and utterly useless opposition has compounded the nation’s problems. There is no way Zanu PF would have remained in power for all these last 37 years dragging the nation this deep into this hell-on-earth if it was not for the fact that we have one of the most corrupt, incompetent and utterly useless opposition politicians in human history.

Only a Zimbabwean opposition posse would fly half-way round the world to “re-engage” and still fail to answer the simple question everyone knew they would be asked. Of course, the sanctions must remain in place. Zanu PF has stubbornly refused to implement even one democratic reform necessary for free, fair and credible. It is na├»ve, to even suggest the removal of Mugabe transformed the party into a democratic party. 

Thursday, 14 December 2017

"Will ensure credible, free and fair elections" Mnangagwa promised - must be held to account, if he fails P Guramatunhu

“We call for the unconditional lifting of the political and economic sanctions, which have crippled our national development,” Mnangagwa told a meeting of the ZANU-PF central committee in downtown Harare.
“We realise that isolation is not splendid or viable as there is more to gain through solidarity, mutually beneficial partnerships.”
That smacks of the usual school bully tactics who loves trading on other people’s toes, pretends not to notice and then insist it was an accident. After the blatant cooking up of the vote count in the March 2008 elections and wanton violence during the run-off that follow only an arrogant regime like Zanu PF would pretend the imposition of sanctions to press the demand for free and fair elections is unjustified.
“Government will do all in its powers to ensure that the elections are credible, free and fair. These elections are nearer than what you expect,” he said without elaborating.
This is nonsense! We need a free media and freedom of expression for free and fair elections. So if President Mnangagwa is serious about making sure next year’s election are free and fair then why does he have a Minister of Information cum Propaganda in his cabinet, whose purpose is to stifle public discourse and retain Zanu PF’s strangle hold on the print and electronic media?
Why has President Mnangagwa institute public sector reforms designed to end Zanu PF’s undemocratic control of State Institutions such as the Police, ZEC, etc. to carry out their duties without fear or favour. There is no hope of holding free elections when the Police are under orders to turn a blind eye to Zanu PF thuggery.
There is no way ZEC is going to produce a verified voters’ roll before the next elections. President Mnangagwa knows only too well that this is a constitutional requirement and, more pointedly, that without such a roll the sky is the limit to the vote rigging mischief a seasoned company like NIKUV can do. With no verified voters’ roll it will be nonsensical to claim the elections were free and fair!
President Mnangagwa does not deny that corruption has been a serious problem in Zimbabwe. He must know that Zanu PF has siphoned billions of dollars from Marange diamonds to bankroll its many vote rigging schemes. How can an election be free and fair when one side has access to billions of dollars at taxpayers’ expense when the other side has very little?

If President Mnangagwa did not agree with all that Mugabe has been doing all these years including rigging elections then, now that he is President, he should right all the wrongs Mugabe did. Happily, most if not all the political wrongs including implementing all the democratic reforms to ensure free, fair and credible elections can be done quickly and little cost to the nation. The truth is President Mnangagwa agreed with Mugabe’s agenda to establish the de facto one-party Zanu PF dictatorship because he too benefited from the absolute power it brought and all the material wealth it brought. He has no intention of implementing the democratic reforms and risking it all in a free and fair election.

I have never ever heard President Mnangagwa promise “credible, free and fair elections”; he has done so now. Free, fair and credible election is a fundamental human right and an important pre-requisite for good governance. We must hold him to account if he fails to hold free and fair elections next year.

With no democratic reforms implemented there is no doubt that next year’s elections will not be free, fair and credible. It is our duty to make sure the international community, especially SADC, dismiss the election as a sham. With no legitimately elected government, Zimbabwe will then be forced come up with some interim government which will be tasked to implement the democratic reforms and to hold fresh free elections.