HomeOpinion & AnalysisED has the power, now what?

ED has the power, now what?


ON Friday, President Emmerson Mnangagwa swiftly signed Constitutional Amendment No 2 Bill into law, concluding the process which saw Zanu PF and its preferred opposition, the MDC-T led by Douglas Mwonzora coalescing to strengthen his grip on power.

Mnangagwa can now appoint and disappoint Vice-Presidents at will and sleep peacefully knowing the succession issue in his party is as good as sorted to his liking.

Mnangagwa can now appoint senior judges as he sees fit. He is expected to use his new-found power to extend Chief Justice Luke Malaba’s term of office despite the Chief Justice reaching retirement age this week.

ED Almighty then.

The “one centre of power principle” that has been Zanu PF speak for : “We do not care for constitutional democracy” is very much in operation, aided by the turncoats at the MDC-T faction.

We all thought Mnangagwa would be different from his old master, the late former President Robert Mugabe, but the speed with which he has moved to amend the Constitution in his favour in the three years and a bit he has been in power is astounding.

What is clear is that Mnangagwa is keen to remain in power even beyond 2030 as he has hinted in the past hence his preoccupation with power retention instruments.

Whatever he does, he can argue that he has a constitutional mandate, however dubious.

Indeed, he is now powerful but what is fundamental to note is his power is only in retaining authority to govern.

Is the running mate issue going to solve the economic malaise bedevilling the country or it is all about dealing with internal succession issues, and ensuring that he will have a submissive Vice-President?

Last week, the country was preoccupied with the good, the bad and the ugly associated with the new Act but days later, we came out of the debate poorer and even more divided as a nation. We are so far from the united nation we would all want to be.

Civic society, the opposition (minus Mwonzora and his MDC-T faction, of course) and some lawyers are threatening legal action and protests as they cannot watch idly as the Constitution, overwhelmingly voted for by 93% of voters during the referendum, being mutilated.

Evidently, the constitutional amendments have been divisive and divisions are something Zimbabwe can ill afford at this juncture.

How will Mnangagwa use his new-found power? Only time will tell.

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