Social Forum: Animal Farm is here to stay


When Sister Chipo got tired of being jilted by boyfriends, her heart broke beyond repair. She vowed not to get engaged for the rest of her life.

In spite of chiding and potential ostracism, she remained resolute.

The chapter on love affairs was permanently closed! All men were painted with the same brush. Baboons will always be baboons, she proclaimed. So, why then befriend monsters?

I also was once in love with politics, but my interest in this ungodly game has gradually diminished. I discovered that, like cheating boyfriends, politicians are talented at confusing the vulnerable before dumping them in a sea of perennial pestilence.

From Ian Douglas Smith’s frying pan we jumped into the hellish, heavy hand of black rule. We were promised heaven on this earth once the white skin was replaced by the black one.

But no sooner did we attain independence than we were inundated with chronicles of corruption, theft, political violence, tribal cleansing and a regime of skewed economic policies like the Economic Structural Adjustment Programme.

In 1997, war veterans, both genuine and bogus, were given substantial, unbudgeted for funds. Since then, they have been used for political expediency.

In 1998, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) civil war not only drained our fiscus, but also put our soldiers’ lives at stake. The net effect of the DRC “invasion” was to line-up the bottomless pockets of political gurus.

The Grain Marketing Board scandal and National Oil Company of Zimbabwe debacle in the late ’90s are convincing stories of the excessive haemorrhage and the resultant death of Zimbabwe, our revered farm.

When dissenting voices were branded “stumps” to be removed, it dawned on us that the King of the Jungle was now more equal than others on the farm.
Bedevilled by insurmountable political, social and economic ills, we mulled the formation of a pro-people-centred political party, hence the birth of the MDC in 1999.

In the MDC, we all carved a niche, hoping it would transform the scorched farm into a land richly dressed in greenery.

It wasn’t until 2005 when the MDC, the “people’s party” split while the journey to Canaan was extremely far from being accomplished.

Unlike the MDC, my mother remained stuck to my peremptory father for the sake of my welfare. Being fostered is hell on earth, she knew.

Wasn’t it “our” party which participated in the clandestine crafting of the Kariba Draft Constitution which they later ditched, having read the people’s mood? “Our” party also agreed to the piecemeal 18th Amendment of the Access to Information and the Protection of Privacy Act and the Public Security Act in 2007.

Perhaps we can exonerate “our” party on these issues since it was not in government by then. But here’s a plethora of events in which it participated since the formation of Government of National Unity:

An oversized Cabinet of 71 ministers instead of 31 agreed upon. All these against the backdrop of a teetering economy

Forming the Constitutional Parliamentary Select Committee to spearhead the writing of the constitution which was supposed to be people-centred

The alleged clandestine hefty salaries for the Cabinet in January 2011 for which some ministers feigned ignorance, since they had not gone to their banks for three months, it was said. How they survived for so long in a poor country without visiting their banks is the mystery of the year.

The “party of excellence’s” ministries of Finance and Public Service were lethargic about increasing workers’ poor wages citing a constrained fiscus, but the former is said to have recently approved the purchase of expensive, luxury cars for Cabinet members!

The defence college is a “success story”, thanks to our government’s misplaced priorities. The $98 million loan was earmarked for the college when service delivery is poor. After the deal was unanimously sealed, foxy squealers from our party threatened to rescind it, labelling the institution “a war college” in a non-war zone.

If we weren’t deceived by our eyes in the run-up to the party’s April congress, it is therefore cryptic to differentiate baboon A from baboon B on issues of violence.

We’ve been toiling in murky political waters since time immemorial, giving credence to the phrase: An honest politician is a pure rarity.

The WikiLeaks website revelations saga is a telling testimony that animals will never be equal, for the weaker ones will Nicodemously criticise the larger-than-life ones.

Listen to jingles extolling the kings across the political divide! Minimus is deadly determined to please Napoleon for his supper. If you freely pour out your heart and fail to host nocturnal visitors on this farm, I will give you the last litre of my blood.

Cunning foxes court the widow at her husband’s funeral. With elections looming, we are bound to be “consoled by real parties” to take us to Canaan.

The Ncube-led MDC is busy selling the tribal card to draw our sympathies, but they forget that had it not been for their instinctive behaviour we would have long crossed the Red Sea.

I am yet to decide who to vote for in the imminent plebiscite since baboons are the same. Whatever choice I will make, I strongly believe the Animal Farm façade is here to stay.

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