The way President Robert Mugabe is globe-trotting has left many Zimbabweans asking questions whether the nonagenarian Zanu PF leader is morphing into a dictator.
It is unbelievable that Mugabe has since mid-January pocketed over $3,6 million in allowances from foreign trips some of which were otherwise unproductive meetings. The other trips were for medical check-ups.
In total, Mugabe has blown $10 million on at least seven foreign trips. Zimbabweans would obviously wonder where his wits are. According to senior government officials, on each of the trips Mugabe is receiving on average $600 000 in allowances, with each aide getting a minimum of $500 per day. On top of that, Mugabe always travels with 60 aides among them his cronies.
This is unfortunate given government is struggling to pay its workforce and provide basic services such as public health care. Could this be the reason why he’s always travelling at a time government is broke?
One wonders how Mugabe could blow this much money at a time government is struggling to grow the stunted economy. Sadly, some of the meetings could have been attended by low-key government officials or even his deputies who don’t need hordes of aides by their side.
We believe if Mugabe was serious about plucking Zimbabwe from its political and economic morass, he should be realistic and reduce his travelling entourage.
Mugabe, like many dictators, does not spend his money, but the State is paying for him and his family. It is unbelievable that Treasury has become a collection bag for Mugabe and his regime to have fun. Isn’t it true that there is nothing called benevolent dictators in real life, and Mugabe should know that?
On the other hand, unrealistic expenditure not only by Mugabe himself but by First Lady Grace and Zanu PF is now very common. The country continues to witness fake development projects and a waste of public finance at the taxpayers’ expense.
Mugabe must know that Zimbabweans are not blind. It is clear that the President is abusing power for his personal gain. What is happening is clear robbery of public wealth with impunity although the public are made to believe otherwise.
No doubt the President has deliberately emasculated the institutional set-up, yet Zanu PF believes that the First Family is the only one capable of revitalising sanity and develop Zimbabwe.
Is it not true that the basic definition of corruption is valid for all of Mugabe’s actions? We wonder how Mugabe can abuse State resources when people are reeling from innumerable economic hardships.
It is disastrous that Zimbabwe’s natural resources and most profitable industries and businesses are being exploited by a few individuals in the ruling Zanu PF. The economy and strategic institutions are being controlled by a family oligarchy or cronies.
Although Mugabe has always refuted reports that he has morphed into a dictator arguing that Zimbabwe has always held elections, it is clear from his actions that he no longer has the masses’ interests at heart.
It is time Mugabe is reminded of Greek philosopher Plato, who once said: “Dictatorship naturally arises out of democracy and the most aggravated form of tyranny and slavery out of the most extreme liberty.”
Suffice to say that in a dictatorial set-up, all elections are won by the party of the dictator. Therefore continuous electoral victories by Zanu PF are an indication of a questionable regime because people naturally prefer changes, so something unnatural is happening to prevent it.
So, Mugabe’s tool is his abuse of all State resources for his political agenda and propaganda. Is it not true that under Mugabe, all social and public institutions are generally being run by coteries of stooges or relations and manipulation of any steps in an election is just simple?
Is it also not true that all that the people hear from public media are Mugabe’s personal achievements, Grace and his untested vision? All these images are meant to present Mugabe as the most pious, respected and courageous leader who was born to liberate Zimbabwe against all possible evil.
Mugabe should know that most dictators have fallen due to people’s sacrifices; not through electoral defeats. Zimbabweans will not be fooled again.