PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe’s wife Grace’s entry into fulltime politics has sent some tremors, not only within the ruling Zanu PF party, but also among the country’s citizens.
Her elevation with endorsements from across the Zanu PF structures painted a picture of a united party. Party leaders fell over each other saying her elevation would stem factionalism and unite the fractitious political party.
For the record, Zimbabweans are not against Grace’s entrance into politics. They respect her choices, Zanu PF and those who have made their choice to be led by her.
The country’s governance charter is clear that people have the freedom to make political choices. This right should not only be enjoyed by a few, but everyone of the country’s citizenry.
But less than two weeks after her grand entrance into the political fray, Grace has shown her true colours — dictatorial tendencies — such that even those that schemed her entry into politics could be rethinking their strategy going forward.
On Thursday, the First Lady showed her undemocratic credentials while addressing Zanu PF youths. She claimed she was above ruling party rules and would not be shackled in her quest to accumulate wealth.
This could imply that even the country’s Constitution might not stop her as she was above the law yet she feigned support for the poor.
It was also with regret that she issued threats against the party members and the savage attack on the person of Deputy minister of Justice Fortune Chasi and others perceived as opponents is clear testimony that she could even be worse.
She boldly declared: “My time has come to show the people what I am made of.”
Grace also said she was a “bouncer” and a “force to reckon with”.
It gets the country worried that she dreams that as a national leader and the President’s wife she has unfettered rights to unlimited land, opportunities and resources in the country at the expense of other citizens.
The government policy is clear that “one man one farm”, but Grace thinks that that does not apply to her because of her personal status as boldly declared anybody not supporting her moves out to enrich herself was an enemy.
It is on record that Grace now has four properties in her name since the 2000 chaotic fast track land reform programme. She has not hesitated to have other land occupiers moved to create room for her once she declares her interest.
No, Grace, Zimbabweans are peace-lovers and she must exercise restraint and push the agenda of the majority poor Zimbabweans who are struggling to make ends meet as the economy her husband has presided over the last 34years is on a free-fall.
Just by that her leadership qualities, despite her public declarations, is an antithesis to Mugabe since independence.
Mugabe is humble and has never publicly thought that he is better than any other citizen neither has he publicly used his political clout to unashamedly accumulate obscene national wealth.
It is hoped that Grace will her use her precious time with Mugabe to learn how to lead a nation. The country is even surprised that after many years by Mugabe’s side, she has not learnt a thing. We doubt if Mugabe is proud of her public declarations to the contrary. Perhaps she needs some more mentoring time.