ZIMBABWE – Tsvangirai launches MDC-T’s election reform demands with his trademark display of his usual incompetence. He still wants to blame Zanu PF for his own idiocy, said one thing in one paragraph and then the opposite in the next and at the end of the day we still do not know what these reform demands are!
“In July, 2013, we went to an election without reforms despite the resolution of SADC Heads of State in Maputo in June of that year that reforms had to be implemented first,” Tsvangirai reminded us. “The reforms never saw the light of the day due to the intransigence of Zanu PF and the whole nation was stampeded to elections in the absence of reforms,” said Tsvangirai. Well, that is a truck load of bull!
The first step in implementing the reform was for someone to submit the proposed reform in parliament for debate and approve. The “someone” to draft and submit the proposed reform was supposed to be an MDC MP or minister. Throughout the five years of the GNU not even one reform proposal was ever submitted in parliament. None! So why Zanu PF is now being blamed for no reforms beggars belief.
Tendai Biti is at least honest enough to admit that MDC leaders failed the nation in failing to get even one reform implemented. He called it the “collective idiocy” of MDC. The rigged elections brought Biti to his senses and made his see MDC’s folly but not so with Tsvangirai and a few other MDC leaders; they still blame “the intransigence of Zanu PF” for their “collective idiocy”.
“So the demands and reforms contained in the booklet we launch here today are not just MDC demands. They are national demands because of the convergence that has arisen across the political spectrum in the country. They are also SADC demands because what is in this document is what SADC had insisted we should implement in 2013,” Tsvangirai said.
MDC-T has been calling for a National Convergence Conference but most of the other opposition parties have refused to take part because they objected to MDC-T’s insistence on Tsvangirai appointing himself leader of the conference although there is really no need for the conference to have a leader. So the claim that the reforms demands in the booklet are “national” is a fabrication.
The reader’s attention is drawn to the claim that the reforms are “what SADC had insisted” because SADC had indeed come up with a raft of democratic reforms in the 2008 GPA.
“The demands we launch today are nothing new, but have been restated over the years,” continued Tsvangirai in the second paragraph after the one quoted above. “The document we launch here is entitled WReNE (Without reforms No Elections). It is an apt summation of the electoral reforms that should be instituted in the country.”
The GPA reforms were very specific institutional reforms and not “electoral reforms”. The former reforms, implemented properly, were meant to cut the umbilical cord tying Mugabe to the Police, for example.
The weak and feeble constitution approved in the March 2013 referendum Tsvangirai is pinning all his hopes on to force the Police to act in a none-partisan way will never accomplish the task. The new constitution gives the state president alone the power to appoint and fire the Police Commissioner and the state president alone formulates the security policy the Police are instructed to follow. Parliament or no other State institution has any say in all this. Of course the Police will continue to be beholden to the state president to do his/her bidding!
“In their millions, they (the people of Zimbabwe) wrote a new Constitution, which addresses most of the electoral reforms we are demanding but that Constitution is not being implemented by the party in government,” said Tsvangirai. Yet another blatant lie!
It is a historic fact that the outreach stage of the drafting of the new constitution was a waste of time because Zanu PF thugs disrepute most of the public meetings. And most of the things the people had asked for were removed from the final document. It was Mugabe who “dictated” the new constitution boasted Paul Mangwana, the Zanu PF MP who co-chaired the parliamentary committee that wrote the constitution.
“Thus, immediate implementation of the Constitution and alignment of all laws with the people’s charter will go a long way in addressing most of our reform demands and ensure that citizens enjoy the rights that are due to them,” said Tsvangirai.
Tsvangirai confirmed MDC-T has called off elections boycott and so why the party still maintains it stands by the “Without Reform No Elections” position is a mystery. This is a party known for making demands, conditional demands, etc. one day and ignore them the next day.
Our people have waited for 35 years to exercise their basic right to free, fair and credible elections. The country is in a real serious political and economic mess and the holding of free and fair elections is the get out of jail card out of this hell. We need to get the hell out of here and not waste time implementing reforms that will “go a long way” – how long, we do not know – “in addressing most” – how many, we do not know.
We need to revert back to the democratic reforms agreed in the 2008 GPA and implement all the reforms contained therein. The 2013 constitution is too weak and feeble to deliver free and fair elections. We need to stop following incompetent and corrupt leaders like Morgan Tsvangirai on their “collective idiocy” merry-go-round.