The much-awaited 11th Zanu PF conference has come and gone, dishing out a rejuvenated, unstoppable and a more dangerous political party.
Above that, as a nation and as democratic forces, we need to acknowledge and appreciate areas where Zanu PF has been overpowering or over-muzzling us and come up with strategies to counter that. Zanu PF came up with do-or-die plans of actions whilst the democratic forces will be busy clamouring for free and fair elections and riding on the hype that they have the support of people.
After all, free and fair elections supervised by Sadc are anything in the range of 50% to 100% guaranteed of being accepted as free and fair. Democratic forces are doing injustices to the same people who sacrificed much to vote for MDC parties.
The people braved the attack of Zanu PF and went on to vote for change, risking their precious lives. In return, the MDCs failed to protect the people prior to and after the run-off elections.
Since 2000, democratic forces have been complaining of not having free and fair elections and unfortunately always going to the courts filled with President Robert Mugabe’s appointees.
It was really disheartening to hear Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai proclaiming that he had an agreement with his longtime foe, President Mugabe that no one will go to the courts in the event of disputed elections next year. Who have been going to the courts all along? Not Mugabe. Come disputed elections, will Tsvangirai not go to courts? That’s another area where Zanu PF have been beating the democratic forces. We lack consistency.
Wonder why we can’t just shut-up until we know exactly what we want. As they say, there is a gap between the stimulus and reaction and wonder why we can’t utilise that opportunity and respond in a definitive and appropriate manner. The leadership needs to learn to meditate and regurgitate before responding to situations and provocations.
It’s high time that democratic forces learnt to live with the fact that in Africa and with Zanu PF, free and fair elections will always be a utopia, hence a clarion call to plan for the worst.
As an owner of a company operating in Zimbabwe, one would not hire a journalist but a competent person to run his/her company. This is bacause a journalist will merely report to you that the company is failing to perform because of sanctions and so forth.
A competent chief executive will explore and pursue avenues which will give profit to the company in the face of stifling hindrances.
It is therefore an appeal to all progressive forces to come together and fight Zanu PF lest the democratisation agenda might lose steam. Its 2011 or post-Mugabe’s death (or never).
We need to whip each other into line and have a consolidated and rigorous approach to hasten Zanu PF and Mugabe’s dislodgement from office. Zanu PF has already started campaigning whilst the democratic forces are clamouring that there will be no elections in 2011.
The 2011 elections are almost a certainty and unfortunately most likely within the first half of the year as there is no way Zanu PF will sustain its jingles and songs on national TV and radio for a period more than that.
The democratic forces need to stop forthwith to castigate each other at least openly and direct all their energies and resources to the looming fight against Zanu PF.
For Zanu PF can only be dislodged if its opponents go into elections as a united front and if its opponents manage to protect the rural electorate. It needs a do-or-die strategy which calls for the establishlishment of base camps in all the areas Zanu PF also has established base camps.
Whoever wins the mind game will be guaranteed to win votes in that area. To the electorate, it’s a matter of choosing between life and death. As much as we are pursuing the agenda of national healing and all other reforms, we need to also plan for the worst.
Some few months ago liberation movements met and strategised on how to remain in power and counselled each other. National and regional democratic forces should take a leaf from this and come together and strategise on how to push and win the democratisation agenda. There is also a need for civic society to rally behind the democratisation agenda, not the farce that characterised the new constitution consultative process.
As much as it was their right, some members of the civil society who refused to partake in the Copac outreach process should have influenced and empowered the ordinary people by carrying out awareness and education campaigns ahead of the arrival of Copac teams. Zanu PF did its home work and went in advance, influencing participants to air its wishes.
To all Zimbabweans, I say aluta continua, don’t lose hope but bear with the leaders and institutions of change. Your increased support especially at this juncture is called upon and will make the difference.