Cage the ‘wolves’ Mr President


PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa’s recent admission that there are ‘wolves in sheep’s clothing’ within the top echelons of his beleaguered government simply calls for an operation of caging them in order to abate further battering of our economy.

I have found the President’s remarks very fascinating and a timely reminder for his government to be cajoled into setting up corrective measures. Apart from confirming the glaringly age-old truth, Mnangagwa’s confession of rotten apples in his basket of close lieutenants can be taken as a tip of the iceberg.

There have been clarion calls for the President to go beyond rhetoric when it comes to dealing with institutionalised rot in this country and his ruling party Zanu PF may continue to suffer from its dishonoured status as the cohort of mere talkers than doers.

In simple terms, I personally find the failings of some of Mnangagwa’s ministers and top officials in government as a direct throwback to the previous regime. Now the most pertinent question in everyone’s mind to the president is: whither are we bound?

Mnangagwa can no longer afford to turn a blind eye to the goings on in his government as he is the final port of call in answering to the failings of his appointed lieutenants. Now the tendency of trifling serious matters should never be allowed to see the light of a new day.

The mere fact that Mnangagwa has acknowledged that there are enemies of progress among his top officials, draws the spotlight on the necessary steps he should make henceforth.

It is important for the President to understand and appreciate that the destiny of our country Zimbabwe is irreversibly intertwined with his capacity to indiscriminately dislodge all tentacles holding together institutionalised corruption.

As things stand, the President has the most unenviable task of repairing a battered economy, which invariably turns out to be a handiwork that he pretends to have never been party to.

The emancipation of the Zimbabwean people from all forms of deprivation will need Mnangagwa’s uncompromised courage to take the right turn as we find ourselves at crossroads.

It can only be desirable on the part of his Excellency to now call a spade by its real name. He must tolerate no more deadwood.

The glowing promises that were said at his inauguration following the eventful month of November 2017 are yet to be made good of, prompting that frightening prospect of perpetual bad governance.

In the hope of setting a new and desirable form of governance, Mnangagwa simply needs to deal with corruption very decisively and like yesterday.

Any efforts by him to dispel the negative image projected by the outside world will remain futile until the day our country witnesses the lynching of corruption kingpins whose pot bellies continue to bury within themselves the fat and cream of this country.

As a formidable survivor of the war of liberation, and other incidences alike, Mnangagwa’s skills set cannot fail him should he decide earnestly to confront corruption and wage a spirited battle against it.

He has got all the chance now to exhibit his will that should find the way for him. Our dim optimism now lies in the recent declaration by him that the end is nigh for corrupt officials.

It’s yet to be seen what Mnangagwa has got up his sleeves and hopefully it shall not be another case of much ado about nothing. He cannot allow himself to become the focal point of the people’s execration.

Any failure by Mnangagwa to deal with his wayward officials shall attest to yet another case of ineptitude, inherently ridden with fantasy.

This is now a defining moment that can either prove his mettle or condemn him to the life of biblical Sisyphus who was forced to roll an immense boulder up a hill for eternity.

The key hallmark of Mnangagwa’s governance lies in the complete eradication of corruption and failure to do this may prove very costly for him and his government.

I think the President needs to make a decree that anyone simply suspected of engaging in graft shall not have access to bail until their matter is finalised, and in the case of convicted top government officials, I suggest he gets the best advice from China.

Corruption is sternly proving to be the bedrock of all the failings of the new dispensation, and it has caused untold suffering to the most innocent people.

It has not only hampered the smooth flow of government business, but gone as far as mutilating the most elementary privileges that the common citizen ought to enjoy.

Any prospect of experiencing sustainable growth will remain elusive as long as the scourge of graft is untamed. It has already been proved that no policy mix will salvage our economy from further decline, as long as corruption flourishes behind the scenes.

Mnangagwa now needs to be very alive to the reality that he and his government don’t control time, and as such they must embrace and let it work for them and the nation of Zimbabwe at large.

To continue grappling with the effects of corruption now turns out to be more of a choice than anything else.

 George Machanja is a social commentator and he writes in his personal capacity. He can be reached on