By Luke Tamborinyoka
DEVELOPMENTS in the past few days and weeks have shown that those in charge of our so-called Second Republic are nothing more than a clueless bunch given to gross lies, glaring contradictions and embarrassing inconsistencies. It has not just been a sordid trail of sheer cant and humbug but a sorry tale of perfidy and contradictions. From the false mantra that “Zimbabwe is open for business” when it is only open for murder and massive corruption to the recent lavish praises of the late Robert Mugabe for his “principled” leadership when he was, in fact, violently ousted from office through a coup ostensibly for his alleged lack of principle, this Second Republic has seriously exposed itself as a hoax.
This week, I give just but a few examples of the regime’s inconsistencies and glaring contradictions that have been exposed in the past few days.
The principled Mugabe versus the unprincipled
The Mnangagwa regime is simply a regime of contradictions. In the run-up to the coup in November 2017, Zanu PF officials and the military publicly told us Mugabe had strayed from the principles of the liberation struggle. They said he had betrayed the ethos and principles of the war of liberation by sidelining stalwarts of the liberation struggle in preference to the many political upstarts who surrounded him. This betrayal of liberation war principles and war-time camaraderie was the main reason Mugabe was militarily hounded out of office.
In his infamous speech in the afternoon of November 13, 2017 , the then Commander of the Defence Forces, General Constantino Chiwenga said the army were the “stockholders” of the struggle and throughout Zanu PF’s history, the military had always stepped in to protect the party when its cardinal principles were betrayed. A few days later, they violently forced Mugabe to resign through a coup on the grounds that he had betrayed the ethos and principles of the party and the war of liberation.
We were all shocked last week on the second anniversary of Mugabe’s death when Mnangagwa poured lavish praises on the late dictator as having been a man of principle.
In mere three years and while lying in the soft requiem of death, Mugabe appears to have morphed from a wayward leader lacking principle to a great liberation war stalwart who was a firm stickler to the liberation ethos and principles.
Phew. By their now contradictory claims exposed last week, this lot never realised they were tripping over their own tongues in this massive somersault of standpoint.
Contradictions, perfidy and lies
Mbinga versus Binga
In local colloquial diction, mbinga refers to a person of massive means, nay a hotshot with hordes of money to share and spare.
As a country, at least according to Finance minister Mthuli Ncube and ED himself, Zimbabwe is rich and doing well, a country on the rise as evidenced by the massive infrastructural projects currently underway, so the script goes. We have in fact been told that we have had a budget surplus and that this year, we will certainly be food-secure and that we are set to have far much more than our set target of over a million metric tonnes of maize. Our strategic grain reserve is almost bursting at the seams and we are generally doing fine, so the regime’s script goes.
In other words, Zimbabwe as a country would qualify to be a mbinga, at least in the logic of ED and his minions — a progressive country with enough to share and spare.
In spite of the above rhetoric, we were all, therefore, shocked to learn that in this purported country of means, a country that has reportedly regained its status as the breadbasket of the region, a citizen would fall from a tree while collecting wild fruits to avert hunger and starvation.
A week or so ago, amid the much-vaunted food security that the country has reportedly achieved, 61-year-old Sophia Mudimba from Nampande village in Chief Sinakoma’s area reportedly fell from a tree while collecting wild fruits to feed herself. Yes, she died while collecting fruits from a busika/mpakanyuka tree. The indigenous tree bears fruits that are widely eaten and sold in poverty-stricken Binga, an arid area that stretches along the Zambezi escarpment. The councillor for the area, Naison Mugande, confirmed that, indeed, the old woman had fallen from a tree and died while collecting wild fruits to avert starvation.
But why would this mbinga of a country have citizens dying from hunger in Binga for lack of food? Mbinga rhymes with Binga but there is no rhyming between the rhetoric that we are food secure and the reality that hungry old women are falling from trees while collecting wild fruits to feed themselves and their families!
There is a glaring contradiction and inconsistency between what is being said and the sad reality on the ground. Mbinga versus the reported tragedy in Binga. Someone is lying here that as a country we are doing well and that the regime is doing its best to improve the lot of our people. If this vaunted rhetoric were true, our old women would not be scrounging for wild fruits in order to feed themselves. In the case of Mudimba, a citizen of a country that is purported to be food-secure, she went into the forest to find life and got death instead!
The regime just has a penchant for inconsistencies, contradictions, perfidy and lies.
The lavished war veterans versus their sad predicament on the ground
Mugabe had reportedly ignored war veterans when he was ousted in 2017, sidelining them from positions and ignoring their welfare while pampering newcomers into his administration, then known by the moniker of G40.
Among their reasons for grabbing power, the Second Republic reportedly came to reverse and avert the sad plight of the comrades, so we were told. After all, the leadership of the war veterans in the name of secretary-general Victor Matemadanda and Chris Mutsvangwa were on the forefront in the chorus against Mugabe on the charge that the former strongman had ignored addressing the plight of these veterans of our war of liberation.
Mutsvangwa is now a key ED ally, his wife is a Cabinet minister and Matemadanda is now a diplomat. The guys appear to have been waging a crusade to join the gravy train as individuals as evidenced by the renewed chorus by the war veterans recently that their welfare has not improved under Mnangagwa. Only the leaders of the war veterans who clamoured for Mugabe’s ouster benefited in their personal capacities. This means nothing has changed for the lot of our war veterans and the so-called new dispensation is just but a charade of smokescreens, contradictions and lies.
If the neglect of war veterans was one of the reasons for the ouster of Mugabe, what should we do now to the current regime, given that war veterans are being wantonly assaulted, arrested and bundled into police vans for complaining about their welfare? In this regard, is this regime faring any better than the one it removed for exactly the same reasons?
It’s all lies, inconsistencies, perfidy and contradictions.
The virtual attendance and the virtual lie
ED’s voluble spokesperson George Charamba last week told us that Mnangagwa would not be physically attending the UN General Assembly meeting in New York that is set for later this month. Charamba said Mnangagwa would only attend the meeting virtually.
Among Mnangagwa’s reasons for not attending the meeting physically, Charamba told us that his boss had chosen not to physically attend because of the COVID-19 pandemic and to allow for the consolidation of reforms and for the recovery of the economy to take root. He said the organisers of the meeting had recommended a hybrid assembly where member States could either attend virtually or physically. Charamba sought to portray ED as a responsible leader who had opted to save the country’s resources by attending the meeting virtually.
Yet this could all be a virtual lie, with others now contending that the US has in fact denied visas to ED and his delegation.
If this is true, Charamba, in his usual high verbiage, may have swiftly entered the message fray in order to control the narrative. He may have been lying on behalf of his murderous boss, whose blood-soaked legacy other world capitals regard as repugnant.
It appears the rhetoric that Mnangagwa had personally chosen to attend the UN meeting virtually may, in fact, be a virtual lie.
Raping versus making love
Yet it appears that Charamba, the spokesperson of the local “outschists” with a penchant for weird pronouncements, is not alone in the world of warped and outlandish cadence.
We have just heard another coup in Guinea where Alpha Conde was deposed recently. The new military ruler appears to have confirmed the age-old notion that soldiers generally have a Freudian fixation with sex. Draped in the country’s flag while addressing the Press in Conakry, coup leader Lieutenant Colonel Mamady Doumbouya reportedly said:
“Guinea is beautiful. We don’t need to rape Guinea anymore. We just need to make love to her .”
In Zimbabwe’s case, however, the country continues to be raped and violated. The regime is certainly not making any love. Instead, a well-heeled political elite is plundering the country while the rest of the country suffers.
Moreover, and as shown in this instalment, this callous regime has exposed itself through its naked lies, contradictions and inconsistencies. For a regime that came amid much promise, there has been a marked difference between the shouted rhetoric and the despicable reality on the ground.
In many cases, the regime has scarfed and tied itself down in its own contradictions and inconsistencies. There is a vast difference, nay a huge chasm, between the reality on the ground and the glorified world of make-believe that the regime sonorously shouts out everyday.
Its most glaring lie and contradiction is that this is a Second Republic when, in fact, it is a more brutal continuation of the first. For me, what is only second about this so-called Second Republic is that its murderous instinct, incompetence and massive corruption are second to none!
- Luke Tamborinyoka is the deputy secretary for presidential affairs in the MDC Alliance led by Nelson Chamisa . Tamborinyoka , an award-winning journalist