Zim is in hands of callous ruling elite

Your Excellency, methinks Zimbabwe is in the hands of a callous ruling elite. It is my conviction that the country is not governed according to rule of the law, yielding to the tenets of citizenry participation, accountability and transparency.

GOOD day, President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Your Excellency, methinks Zimbabwe is in the hands of a callous ruling elite. It is my conviction that the country is not governed according to rule of the law, yielding to the tenets of citizenry participation, accountability and transparency.

As I see it, the temerity of a Zanu PF bigwig to urge the then Citizen Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa to take the first step towards reconciliation by extending a message of congratulations after his resignation as CCC party leader evidenced the unmitigated gall of a callous ruling elite.

Considering that all the August 23 and 24 harmonised elections accredited observer missions concluded that the elections failed the credibility test, it was true to the nature a callous ruling elite for Christopher Mutsvangwa to subscribe to the thought that Chamisa would stoop that low.

Your Excellency, with all due respect, that would be akin to anointing the devil with olive oil. “A simple congratulatory message is the magic wand to all the hopes and ambitions of Nelson Chamisa. The sticking sore thumb is the griping of Chamisa, all that for self-serving narcissism and lust for apex national power,” Mutsvangwa stated, undiplomatically.

His utterence was replete with the pomposity of a callous ruling elite. It was curt, reminiscent of Your Excellency’s peremptory response to the question whether you were satisfied with the performance of the Sport minister, Kirsty Coventry, after you reappointed her.

“I have reappointed her because I am pleased with her performance. Whoever was not pleased with her can appoint someone else when they become President," you unStately retorted. Methinks it must have been against the backdrop of such a lordly disregard of objections that British playwright William Shakespeare remarked: "How insolent he has become, how proud, how peremptory!”

From where I stand, individual members of the callous ruling elite distinguish themselves with their haughty deportment and hard-talk. They are arbitrary as Ziyambi Ziyambi demonstrated in his outbursts against the Judiciary in May 2021.

He threw at them some below the belt punches.

With the tenure of Malaba scheduled to end on his 70th birthday on May 15, 2021, the High Court sitting that went all night long stood in the way of government's intention to extend his tenure. Ziyambi accused the judges of being captured by some foreign interests.

Reacting to the ruling by a panel of three judges that had reached the determination that Chief Justice Luke Malaba, as the incumbent, could not benefit from the constitutional amendment that extended by five years, the retirement age of the Chief Justice to age 75, Ziyambi arrogantly threw a verbal tirade and threatened them with unspecified consequences.

Given the abundant evidence of elections which failed to meet the credibility test, the parliamentarians were not guided by their convictions in their deliberations. It was apparent that they were determined to uphold their subservience to the ruling elite that butters their bread.

Your Excellency, as I see it, Zimbabwe is indeed in the hands of a callous ruling elite. The country is a million moons away from being a democratic country. From where I stand, the ruling elite pays lip service to the ideal of human dignity. It does not subscribe to the virtues of democracy.

Despite religiously running harmonised elections after every five years in conformity with the Constitution, the elections are all a facade for democracy. I reckon the objective of the elections is to cast a deceptive veneer on constitutionalism and strengthen the regime’s firm grip on power.

Consequently, the electoral outcomes produce parliamentarians who are pliable in heart and spirit to the callous ruling elite. Its entrenched hold on power has nothing to do with effective and robust representation of the citizenry. No, not at all.

All things being equal, Parliament is supposed to be an august institution in which the privilege of being people's representatives is exercised earnestly with honour. Yet, the Zanu PF parliamentarians have notably been cowed and compromised.

They have reduced Parliament to a forum for singing for one's supper. One after the other, they  took turns to congratulate the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) for what they said was the running of credible elections. Their ingratiation confirmed that they are a mere pliable tool in the hands of a callous ruling elite.

Considering that the legislators were aware of the series of questionable acts of omission and commission of Zec, they ought not have showered accolades on the electoral management body. Ordinarily, they knew that Zec submitted to you a final delimitation report that was disowned by seven of the 9 commissioners.

Your Excellency, the parliamentarians ought have been mindful of the storm Zec raised, which led some concerned citizenry to argue that the secretive exchange of the delimitation report between you and Zec bordered on deceit and constitutional violation.

Constitutional law guru,  Lovemore Madhuku was of the school of thought that the secretive interaction between Zec and the President about the delimitation report raised questions on the ability of the commission to run elections with integrity despite the fact that it is a serious violation of the Constitution. I reckon that the traits of a callous ruling elite are self-evident.

Methinks the comprehensive assault by Zanu PF gurus on the reputation of the former Zambian Vice-President Nevers Mumba, was eloquent testimony that Zimbabwe is under the rule of a callous ruling elite.

Your  Excellency, amid the economic malaise, the callous ruling elite ought to heed President Franklin Roosevelt. His presage: "We have always known that heedless self-interest was bad morals; we now know that it is bad economics."

Cyprian Muketiwa Ndawana is a public-speaking coach, motivational speaker, speechwriter and newspaper columnist.

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