Now is time for truth to be told

If ever there is an opportune time for truth to be told, it is now. As I see it, no truth has ever been crying out to be told since November last year than the truth that it was due to love of power than love for the country that motivated the deposal of former President Robert Mugabe.

By Cyprian M Ndawana

Although the opposition, civil society and citizenry at large thronged the streets to prime the pressure that eventually sucked Mugabe, they did not know that they were hyping to a cause whose grand scheme of things was exclusively secretive to insiders of the plot.

His deposal was an iceberg in which outsiders of Zanu PF saw only the tip. But insiders knew that beneath the tip was a secret known only by conspirators.

What was unbeknown to all and sundry was that love of power was the motivation which was camouflaged from public view.

If it is was true that love of country was the motivating factor, surely, President Emmerson Mnangagwa could be duly attentive to the emotions of the citizenry.

He could be striving towards meeting his promises. Yet, like Mugabe, his pledges are all flower but no fruit.

He came to power pledging to combat corruption, yet none of the criminals surrounding Mugabe he alluded to were convicted.

If anything, like Mugabe, Mnangagwa is prodigal with the emotions of citizenry. His let bygones be bygone policy is a callous concealment of skeletons in his drawers.

Despite those said criminals being known to Mnangagwa as he too closely surrounded Mugabe during his tenure, it is reasonable to surmise that they are not being arrested because of the probability that they too have sufficient evidence to incriminate him.

There could be no easier sitting ducks for him than the said criminals he referred to with absolute certainty in his inaugural speech.

Yet, up to now, of the few that were brought to court, their cases have since stalled with a snowball’s chance in hell to resume.

It was laughable of him to warn Wicknell Chivayo that the prisons were not full. It is my fervent hope that Mnangagwa does not expect to be believed on his threat to descend on land barons, given that he went mute on criminals who surrounded Mugabe and those who externalised money.

Even by any stretch of imagination, it is difficult to see fundamental differences between Mugabe and Mnangagwa.

They both are long on promise and short on delivery. With all due respect, Mnangagwa is a Mugabe by another name; similar heart, soul and spirit.

Just as Mugabe promised to arrest State enterprises bosses who awarded themselves hefty salaries among other wayward practices which were not acted upon, so are the Mnangagwa threats. He, indeed, is a Mugabe by another name, essentially motivated by love of power.

During the previous elections, Mugabe promised to create two million jobs, yet he created two, one for his daughter Bona and the other for his son-in-law Simba Chikore. It is in a similar vein that job creation and hospital construction promises by Mnangagwa are destined to flop.

However, given that our livelihoods were ruined to destitution under Mugabe rule, it was inevitable for citizenry to glow to his removal. Despite the military intervention, which ordinarily entails a coup d’etat, his deposal was also heartening news globally.

After close to four decades in power, Mugabe, like an evil tooth, had to be forcibly extracted to step down. And, like Caesar, he yielded to his own men. If anyone ever doubted the sting of dethronement by fellow comrades, they must take a look at Mugabe.

If ever there is a common thread that runs through iron-fisted rulers, it is that they never get the opportunity to wave goodbye to their subjects.

Their departure from the seats of power, in most cases, are abrupt. Rarely do despots get the chance for farewell formalities.

His bad governance rendered Zimbabwe inhabitable. It was virtually at ground zero amid dereliction of infrastructure. Yet, as effects of ageing took their toll on him, Mugabe, with the vestige of his diminishing strength, repeatedly brushed succession proceedings aside.

However, nature takes its course uninterruptedly on king or commoner alike. Hence, he had to ultimately succumb, grudgingly paving way for a change of guard.
Apparently, he had no sympathisers the world over because he was a stone-hearted trademark ruler.

He should long have retired. He was as expired as he was tired. Yet, his wife Grace had the audacity to brag that he was indispensable and would rule even from the grave. It is no wonder that the country veered off course, crumbling to be a mere socio-economic wreckage

Ultimately, his resignation, notwithstanding protestations from his sympathisers that he was under house arrest, was received with acclaim the world over.

His fall from grace was legendary in that it marked the undoing of one of the vestiges of modern-day tyranny.

As I see it, Mnangagwa, despite self claims to being a listening President, has headstrong traits similar to Mugabe.

His refusal to amend electoral laws, including denying citizenry scattered in the Diaspora their right to vote is contrary to expectations of warmheartedness.

His economic recovery strategies are markedly futile. Essentially, Zimbabwe is not open for business.

Given the uncertainty that is currently enveloping the country, coupled with laws that criminalise repatriation of dividends, no investor would ever venture into such a country.

It must not be mistaken for humility that he stopped by a fast food shop in Chegutu.

This, in fact, was showmanship, an enactment of Zambian President Edgar Lungu, who last year stopped by the roadside along the highway and bought fruits from a vendor.

Mugabe perpetuated his hold to power by brinkmanship; he shredded the social fibre, so as to capitalise from the resultant citizenry desperation.

Yet, in spite of his obstinateness, unleashing the military into the political domain was motivated purely by love of power.

Lyrics to a song by Jimmy Cliff, Remake the World, are significant to Zimbabwe. Angered by economic imbalances, Cliff sings, “Too many people are suffering, too many people are sad, too little people have got everything while too many people got nothing. Remake the world.”

As we countdown to the harmonised elections, this is the propitious time to remake Zimbabwe. There could be no better time than now for citizenry to dispense with the dire perils of polarised love of power.


  1. Well said my brother!

  2. Is this the truth or an opinion because i dont agree with you

    1. Mbobo i fully share your sentiment.

  3. Farai J Nhire

    The writer seems to contradict himself. He first gives an impression that Mugabe was unduly removed from power by power hungry people but later implies it was proper and overdue for the former head to leave office. Which is which Mr editor if a may ask? Is it that you are just desperate for an excuse to unfairly lambast Ed. Let me set the record straight: The former head of state resigned because he new he would not survive impeachment move. He was no longer able to cary out his constitutional duties aparently because of old age and the proof of that fact is a suitable and good homework for you if you were hear during the time of those events. As for the perfomance of Ed since he took charge, I think he has done fairly well for someone who only wields a transitional mandate while we are waiting for elections. I have in mind the kind of freedoms we now enjoy which never used to be the case during RGM’s era. Think also about reengagement with the western nations. And more things.

  4. In a country where a lot of what goes on in high offices is kept as secrets, the author has every right to draw certain conclusions to get to the truth. Is is too difficult for govt to completely open up and govern transparently? He may just have acted devil’s advocate to provoke debate on what is the truth of what happened. We may want to debate on and on so may be some truth, even half-truths, may come out. If ED grabbed power for the love of the country, and he promised a lot that seemed to resonate with the people, why has he grown cold feet on all those promises? Why has he not even apologised for supporting RGM all those 38 years? What role did he play in propping up the old despot? Where, exactly, did he differ with RGM, and he now wants to correct that? And remember RGM is still alive and can even answer for himself on some of the differences he (RGM) may have had with ED that ED can now say were evil? ED holds all the levers of power and he cannot even allow ZBC to behave like the public broadcaster that it really is. It takes no budget to do that, surely? He can instruct ZEC to be fair to all political players, and it is in ED’s favour to be seen to do that so he gets legitimacy after the elections; but he remains mum when ZEC seems headed for disputed election results. ED may love power so much, he chooses to be short-sighted and ruin what he was promising would usher in legitimacy for his rule. Yes, he’s engaging the West, but let him not make the mistake of taking the West for granted. Respect is earned, not demanded; and the West will respect his return to power if he behaves honourably. Riding rough-shod over the rights of Zimbos is not a good way of earning global respect. Reign in ZBC, ZEC, RBZ, arrest corrupt people like Obert Mpofu, Ignatius Chombo, Supa Mandiwanzira, Grace Mugabe, Saviour Kasukuwere, Gudyanga, the list is endless!!! Show that you are prez now and people will have hope in what you can do should they give you the mandate to govern them. Being long on promises and very short on action inspires no confidence in ED’s quest for office. Like he’s always spoken highly of RGM, he remains a prodigy of the clueless deranged dictator. ED remains the flip-side of the hated RGM; and the author is right to say ED loves power and hates country. What country can develop without a vision, and what’s ED’s vision other than grabbing power that almost went to Dr Amai? During ED’s more than half-year in power, the economic situation of the average Zimbo has just gotten worse, and it is an open secret. Was ED not part of the system that got us here? Who, in his right mind, would want to invest in a country with no currency (money), no functional transport system, no health delivery system, no power, no water, has sewage streaming in people’s homes, has the army in control of every facet of governance, has the highest unemployment rate in the whole wide world – pointing to potential civil strife; again the list of negatives is endless? ED promises and promises; but does nothing but just promise some more. Pathetic!!!!

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