THE year 2019 has arrived! Here are 365 days on offer; presenting 365 new chances! For the majority of us Zimbabweans, our hope is that the government will use this new chance to do things differently and set the country on a new trajectory.
A lot of mistakes — some of them fatal — have been made since November 2017, but we believe it is never too late to correct these and do the right things. The government was presented with a lot of opportunities in 2018 to set the country on a new course — politically, socially and economically — and the world, which branded us as a Pariah State, was prepared to work with us and take the country forward. We did not take those chances.
The July 30 elections were supposed to help us close the democracy deficiencies and show the world that we can finally move together as one. Instead, they helped show the world just how divided we are as a people and nation.
This country needs a decisive leader — and one centre of power — rather than the current situation where one is never sure who is making the decisions, and which directive to follow.
Mr President, please understand that you are the man in charge and, therefore, the buck should start and stop with you. Your success means the success of Zimbabwe; the same also if you fail.
We know that this country is potentially the richest in Africa, yet has for years suffered from poor leadership, bad political choices and the disenfranchisement of its people by a political elite that cared little for the majority poor.
You were part of that elite before, but as you yourself pointed out, you saw everything that was wrong with such a system and vowed to put the people first. That is why on July 30, the people gave you a five-year term to finally show them what Nirvana looks like.
So we cannot continue down the same destructive route where we see major industry players like Delta Beverages scaling down operations while we vainly chant “Zimbabwe is open for business”.
The New Year represents a new opportunity for you to demonstrate commitment that you promised in the run-up to the presidential elections.
This will only be possible if you assemble a team of advisers that are abreast with the situation on the ground and are able to help you steer this sinking ship to the shoreline. In that case, a diverse group of experts across all sectors, not just political advisers must be recruited as soon as possible.
Continuing with the same advisers — especially if they are dominated by those that advised former President Robert Mugabe — can only be a recipe for disaster.
We are sure that you learnt a number of lessons in 2018, and that should enable you and your government to take the necessary steps in 2019 to correct the mistakes of the past.
As Zimbabweans, we have suffered for far too long at the hands of our leaders’ political and economic mismanagement. We cannot continue this vicious cycle. We need to do things differently in 2019 if we are to get results different from those we got in 2018.
You are only the second leader this country has ever known since independence. Please, do things differently from the gentleman you replaced.