Who actually overthrew Mugabe?

File pic: The late former president, Robert Mugabe

HISTORY is crucial for every nation.

To know its future, a nation must know its past. I will briefly interrogate the coup that unseated the late former President Robert Mugabe.

In 2017, Zimbabwe, for the second time in its choppy antiquity, evidenced what, up until now, has never gotten a scientific definition. The first one is when disgraced Amai employed bedroom tactics to topple the Jongwe who later was finished off by the Ngwena.

Therefore, what transpired in Zimbabwe for the second time in 2017 is called a coup d’état, per se. Some call it a soft coup. Others call it a Zimbabwean thing. To others, it remains undefined and indefinable. For me though, what transpired was a coup. Neither is it soft nor hard. It is a coup, if we agree that coup means an act or omission of pulling down of the government by mounting another on its place regardless of who is behind or whether the fallen government was elected democratically or installed militarily.

In law, a coup is unconstitutional by nature. Thus, whoever carries it out is breaking the Constitution of the land, regardless the one booted out did or replicated the same. The difference is that what transpired in Zimbabwe at the material time was a civic-military coup that involved politicians and military. No coup can make sense without its executor, which in many cases is the junta. To know what happened in Zimbabwe when Jongwe was booted out, even though his age had already phased him out, we need to know who took over thereafter.

As we ponder on the coup and its beneficiary, we need to look at who controlled and benefited or benefited who, or who did what and got what, considering the following realities:

Two dramatis personae feature high in this coup, namely the then fired Vice President Emerson Mnangagwa and the then Commander of Zimbabwe Defence Forces, Constantino Chiwenga. Before booting Mugabe out, Chiwenga used to control Mugabe, his party and regime. That is why he easily scythed them out though not all if we consider the fact that the Lacoste fraction outfoxed and powdered the military, Mugabe, and his wife and snatched the power thereof.

Although Chiwenga and the military controlled Mugabe, another person did too. This was none other than the first lady who exploited the bedroom politics to try to give the presidency a shot to no avail. What would she do if the old codger had already become senile over a decade before? One thing that this disgraced and greedy lady did not see is the fact that nobody is ever executed such a scheme in Africa. Did she want to become a harbinger of a bedroom coup or what? Again, with her measly education, despite being dubiously awarded a fake PhD, how could she skilfully and successfully execute such a complex scheme?

By controlling Mugabe, his party and regime, the army controlled everybody Zimbabwean underhandedly. If Chiwenga really controlled everything, including the army to which he is its head, how did he end up being controlled after the coup? This brings us to who actually deposed Mugabe between Mnangagwa and his shadow aka backup, Chiwenga.

Naturally, in autocratic and crooked countries, politicians depend on the army to rule, not vice versa. The two are like yin and yang though the latter brandish much more power than the former.  If this is the case, should we think that the duo consists of nothing but a puppet and a puppeteer? Who depends on the mercy of who, why and for how long? Who gained and who lost in this convoluted coup? Who outsmarted who and why?

The questions above are crucial, especially as Zimbabweans are preparing for the coming general elections. Such questions must be correctly answered with the aim to free Zimbabwe from a kit and caboodle of hangers-on who have held it to ransom.

In summary, Zimbabweans need to know who toppled their government so that they can deal with him or her. For, if they did so, chances for the ongoing sanctions against the country might be lifted. Zimbabweans need to execute a scheme that will free them from their sellouts in the upper echelons of power and the beneficiaries of the coup in question.

Me thinks Zimbabwe needs probable, provable and reliable persons, but not coup makers. Their stint in offices has not helped Zimbabweans out of the imbroglio, miseries and manmade stinking penury. Who would like such barracudas and washouts in the highest office of the land? Again, who benefited from the coup that saw the Jongwe being eaten by Ngwena?

My words and works will live longer, spread wider, speak louder, and be more valued than their creator who happens to be me. They will speak when I won’t have power and time to speak. They will speak even in my absence.

  • Nkwazi Mhango is a lifetime member of the Writers' Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador (WANL), an expert in Terrorism and author of over 20 books among which are Africa Reunite or Perish, 'Is It Global War on Terrorism or Global War over Terra Africana? How Africa Developed Europe and contributed many chapters in scholarly works on many issues of importance on Africa with the specialisation in the deconstruction and decolonisation theories he has been working on for a while now.


Related Topics