HomeOpinion & AnalysisColumnistsShifting chairs on deck of the Titanic

Shifting chairs on deck of the Titanic

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Dismantling the Mujuru predatory business cabal will not change anything.

Vince Musewe

I think most of us watched the movie — The Titanic. I vividly remember how the orchestra kept playing, even when it was clear that the ship was sinking and there was no way out.

They would play a little bit and as water levels increased, they would shift their chairs.

It was sad and depressing knowing that they had to pretend all was well in the midst of peril.

This is exactly the picture that I have of Zimbabwe right now.
In my opinion, no amount of changing ministers, purging alleged enemies and dismantling the patronage system established by Mujuru will change the fact that Zimbabwe’s economy is teetering at the edge and President Robert Mugabe must just do us all a favour and go.

I feel no sympathy at all for those businesses that have been sucking our treasury dry because of political connections.

All businesses whose principles are questionable and who are part of the predator coalition must be purged.

In my view, they have been complicit in creating the problem we now face and chose to do nothing but pursue profit.

The sad reality is that even if they are purged, nothing better will necessarily emerge out of it.

We will just get the same problems where the Mujuru predatory coalition will be replaced by another more politically correct troop of predators who will no doubt say “its our time to eat”.

It is the system and the culture of Zanu PF that is the problem and not the individuals.

The problems we face can never be solved by Zanu PF in any form or character, nor can they be solved at the same level of thinking that created them, as Albert Einstein said.

So if Zimbabwe is to move forward, what must happen?
Mugabe must resign immediately and so should all his ministers. They must be replaced by a technical team that is apolitical but professional.

This team must then proceed with utmost urgency to sort out the economy.

The police and the army must be reformed now because, in my view, these institutions no longer represent public interest as they are the ones that are stopping inevitable change.

Once that is done, we must then prepare for elections administered by either the United Nations or an inclusive civilian and independent body with vested interests in the proper conduct of elections and not in the results. The Zimbabwe Electoral Commision (ZEC) must be dissolved.

Just as Zanu PF fought against all the elections administered by Ian Smith’s army, we should also reject any elections administered by Robert Mugabe’s army, police, ZEC and judges.

There is absolutely no argument against this, except of course from those who are part of the predatory cabal and want to protect the dictator and the poverty that he is responsible for creating.
In my opinion, any Convergence Convention has no choice but to put forward these demands.

We can no longer afford to pretend and hope that Zanu PF will reform.

We must not expect oranges to fall from an apple tree. Zanu PF must be reformed by us creating an environment that forces them to do just that.

The recent award of radio licences to Zanu PF predatory cronies is a clear indication that this system that oppresses us actually thinks it has a future and intends to further entrench its propaganda machinery at our expense.

Why should we pay radio licences for a system that is against us and does not represent our thinking?

Why should we pay rates when we have city managers who can’t be bothered by the plight of ratepayers but want to collect salaries each month? Why should we pay our taxes to pay the army, police and the Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) who are propping up the very system we hate?

Why should we pay our taxes to further entrench a dictator and a business predatory cabal who are clearly not accountable to us?
I always say that if the armed struggle had not happened and we had all waited for Ian Smith to reform, we would have never achieved our independence.

The same applies now, true and total liberation will only come when we hold fresh elections administered by an independent and credible body.

We must now wake up to the reality that politicians do not negotiate themselves out of power unless they stand to lose heavily.

Only when they have a gun against their heads will they capitulate, and right now that is the only alternative.

That gun that we have is our numbers, our unity of purpose, our commitment for change, and our money.

I am very concerned about hearing that some of our opposition parties are already preparing for 2018 elections. That is utter foolishness. What elections? Administered by whom?

Surely our only battle now is to change this system first. Even if it means there won’t be elections in 2018, so be it.

Every system is designed to give you the results that you get and our electoral system, army and police are designed to deliver a Zanu PF win, no matter what.

This is no time for excuses. Zimbabweans now need the same spirit that captured the minds of young Zimbabweans who went to join the struggle.

They never thought about what they would eat, their jobs, their families or their money in the bank.

The call for liberation was itself larger than life and such a powerful compelling vision that drew its own energy and momentum.
In my opinion, there has never been a time like now where this generation of Zimbabweans has the responsibility to create a totally new path to the future for Zimbabwe.

We must put side all our political differences and economic interests and focus on one goal to create a new Zimbabwe with a responsible government that is led by people who put Zimbabweans first.

Vince Musewe is an author and economist. You can contact him on vtmusewe@gmail.com

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