OUTSIDE the Zanu PF headquarters in Harare, a very large billboard proclaims that, under its current leader President Emmerson Mnangagwa, the age-old ruling party is in the process of rediscovering itself through ideological education. After 39 years in power and more than five decades in politics, it is, indeed, high time the party sheds its old skin.
But we are, however, afraid to say the process of shedding that old skin is fraught with many difficulties given that there are many in the party, who have become Zanu PF itself and will be very difficult to change their past way of doing things and persuading them to will be a tough call.
This is more so given the attitude most in the party have for people who do not agree with them, even over the slightest of issues.
And the Agriculture, Lands, Water, Climate and Rural Resettlement minister Perrance Shiri is an immediate example of how past Zanu PF ideology will be
difficult to revise.
In the process of trying to explain to parliamentarians what happened to the unaccounted for $3 billion under Command Agriculture, he went ballistic when he
was pressed by the opposition MDC legislators to give more details on how the Command Agriculture funds were utilised.
“I can’t be talking to monkeys and baboons,” he shot back at the MPs, in apparent rebuff to their pestering for more details.
Our take of this is that Shiri’s reaction simply reminds and tells us the brazen way Zanu PF has carried out its business over the past nearly 40 years in
During all these years, at the core of the party’s existence has been an ideology that no one has any right whatsoever to question Zanu PF’s deeds, whether
right or wrong, especially if the queries are coming from the opposition. And Shiri aptly proved this point.
We implore the ruling party leader, Cde Mnangagwa, to work hard on this sticking issue that we believe is one of the main areas that the party has to work on
if we are ever going to see each other as fellow country folks, and not as “monkeys and baboons”.
For one to decide to use such base and crude language only serves to expose what they feel about other fellow Zimbabweans who are not Zanu PF.
We are not even surprised that Shiri refused to withdraw his statement and Zanu PF MPs came to his defence because, sadly, this is the Zanu PF ideology; this
is their way of doing things. But can we all be Zanu PF and think the way they do?
Is it any wonder why the country has never made any real progress in being a coherent nation with one common purpose?
All Shiri had to do, like a mature person wishing to build bridges with his country folks under this so-called new dispensation, was to withdraw the statement
and promise to table the details of how the contentious $3 billion was spent.
His stone-faced response only causes many to ask: What is he trying to hide?
This deeply saddens us because if we have a ruling party with such an attitude towards other Zimbabweans and with such a rogue approach to issues, then we are
heading nowhere, indeed. The minister’s statement was a shame and regrettable although we now understand he reluctantly withdrew his “monkeys and baboons”