President Robert Mugabe will from today be referred to as former ruling party leader as his sacked deputy, Emmerson Mnangagwa, bounces back to his positions both in Zanu PF and government.
A day after his ouster and subsequent relocation to self-imposed exile in South Africa on November 6, Mnangagwa made several key commitments.
First, he warned that he was not going anywhere, and was coming back “in a few weeks” to boot out Mugabe and his eccentric wife First Lady Grace from the ruling Zanu PF party and take over control of all the levers of power.
That, he has already achieved that is incontestable, given that the ruling party’s central committee met yesterday and elbowed out the First Couple and reinstated Mnangagwa to his previous positions. The organ also recommended his elevation to the party and government’s presidency.
Mnangagwa two weeks ago also promised that upon coming back, he was going to provide “new and progressive leadership that is not resident in the past and refuses to accept change.”
He also promised to build national cohesion when he urged Zimbabweans to “bury our differences and rebuild a new and prosperous Zimbabwe, a country that is tolerant to divergent views, a country that respects opinions of others, a country that does not isolate itself from the rest of the world because of one stubborn individual who believes he is entitled to rule this country until death.”
In short, he pledged a return to “total” democracy, development and economic prosperity.
It is, therefore, our fervent hope that Mnangagwa honours his promises by ensuring that his transitional government is all inclusive.
The message derived from the solidarity march held on Saturday that Zimbabweans – regardless of their race, sex, creed or political affiliation – still strongly believe that they are key stakeholders in the running of their country shouldn’t be underestimated.
It was clear that Zimbabweans want inclusivity, recognition of basic rights, and important of all, a transitional process to help the country move away from the toxic polarisation that had taken a toll on the country’s leading political parties.
This transitional process should also be executed in a way that paves way for an environment that nurtures electoral reforms and allows for the holding of free and fair elections.
On the economy, Mnangagwa promised that he wanted to see a country that “gives every citizen the opportunity to prosper, to take care of their families, a country that encourages Zimbabweans to invest in their economy and contribute to the development of infrastructure for future generations”.
He indicated that this was part of his vision for a rejuvenated Zimbabwe and particularly Zanu PF. We have no doubt that his words resonate well with what every Zimbabwean yearns for, peace and economic prosperity.
We urge Mnangagwa to bring back Zimbabwe to the international scene and implement policy measures that attract investment and help the country’s economy to improve.
Failure to make good these and other promises, we have no doubt that the citizenry would judge Mnangagwa and his new administration harshly, come elections.