ZIMBABWE – Australian prime minister Julia Gillard at it again! While the world is still recovering from her scandalous inclinations that, among others, include internet filtering, the anti-gambling laws, advocacy for same sex marriages, controversy over religion, Wikileaks and the debate about her country becoming a republic!
In the process of impressing her Zimbabwean hero, Morgan Tsvangirai, Gillard has ruffled feathers world-wide. She has left multi-nations either grossly offended, in immeasurable shock, hurt, devastatingly disappointed, very angry or misguided on Morgan Tsvangirai’stature; or inquiring more of her political credentials and sense of judgment! Zimbabwe leads this worried lot! With western countries farther fast-forwarded into political doldrums over Zimbabwe.
It would be a most decent and urgent gesture for Gillard to apologise to Tsvangirai and his Movement for Democratic Change, to the world, the respective countries and families of the personalities that she unduly or negligently likened Tsvangirai to.
Gillard unreservedly miscalculated Tsvangirai with the same yardstick as South African former head of state and international icon and an accomplished lawyer, Nelson Mandela, Aung San Suu Kyi, an Oxford trained Mynmar national and top notch opposition politician whose party won 392 of the 485 parliamentary seats despite the fact that she had been, at the time of election, languishing under house arrest for fifteen years.
She holds a doctorate from The School of Oriental Studies, University of London, and, has been widely acknowledged by prestigious institutions of the world for openly despising tyranny. This acknowledgement includes the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991. Gillard shamelessly likens Tsvangirai to East Timor’s ex-combatant and former prime minister and first president of Timor between May 2002 and 2007, Xanana Gusmao. He led the revolution against Indonesian domination of Timor. He remains an undisputed icon of the Timorese people.
Julia Gillard could have innocently miscalculated Tsvangirai, but even the Movement for Democratic Change – Tsvangirai would subscribe to the international reaction that such poorly researched acclamations would, inevitably, invite irreparable disrepute not only to Tsvangirai, but his movement, the people of Zimbabwe, the respective misnormed icons and beyond, due to its extremely foolish exaggeration. It is unforgivable political mischief for Julia Gillard to rate Tsvangirai so highly.
It remains an open secret that Morgan Tsvangirai wields of no intellectual means to rise to such occasion due his poor scholastic exposure and gross lack of requisite leadership sophistication. With an incomplete Cambridge Ordinary Level Certificate, in a case where “ordinary really means ordinary” as per ordinary. Morgan Tsvangirai had made his mark in the Zimbabwean political landscape as a retired fire-brand trade unionist and former secretary general of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions on whose mandate his Movement for Democratic Change was formed.
He abundantly lacks both administrative and political astuteness all of which cannot be amended for by Australian kangaroo cheap praise! His most outstanding known achievements so far remain as those of fatally multi-fracturing his once vibrant Movement for Democratic Change at the eleventh hour towards victory and that of serial bed-hoping to the point of jockeying within Mugabe’s ZANU PF party women’s league without learning any lesson from the biblical icons such as Samson who died of shopping for a wife in the wrong basket there-by inevitably betraying the God-given safety strategy of his people. And the famous King Solomon who turned his back on the real God of Adam and Eve and idolised to impress alien women for bed pleasure to the demise of the Jewish kingdom.
Tsvangirai split his party in favour of poorly researched dictatorial tendencies, uncalculated choices and being so much of a political loose-cannon to the point of publicly announcing Mugabe’s unheard of contemplated retirement which he alleged had been confided in him by the president.
Morgan Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change has, over a decade, gone with a vacuum at the top and it has paid heavily for that! Tsvangirai knows no plan or policy and remains a documented harp-hazard thinker who goes by the advice of the last contact either in person or by sms. This makes him a very dangerous personality in the leadership of the revolution. Morgan Tsvangirai has evidently failed to rise above street fighting.
He has failed to take full advantage of Mugabe’s most fragile moments chasing after Australian immeasurably deceitful honors at the expense of the revolution. He remains intellectually ill-equipped to do so. It took the people of Zimbabwe very little time to realise that in their desperate distress, Mugabe would still make a better choice than Tsvangirai. Of all Zimbabwe’s existing political principals, Morgan Tsvangirai remains the more real political “Cyclone Tsunami” that must be allowed to pass and only leave citizens of Zimbabwe rather wet than destroyed and swept away! Morgan Tsvangirai would have long romped into power had it not been for these crippling handicaps! Within his party he lives in constant fear of those personalities made of the stuff that great men’s fathers and mothers were, in favour of trivialities! In the Global Political Agreement of 15 September 2009 that governs Zimbabwe, he has remained content with the position of prime minister with no visible endeavor towards the presidency.
With fellow opposition parties against ZANU PF, which include his movement’s various break-away factions with which he has lots in common, he fears for his leadership position above the objectives of the revolution. As a result Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change has inevitably continued to deteriorate from strength to stench with time, and has sufficient capacity to re-invent itself into farther decay for as long as this vacuum at the top remains unattended to.
It remains a party of timid little men with no guts to usher him closer to the political dust bin in favour of competent leadership. It is of no surprise that he has remained fighting a solo war with his top officials in hibernation! One wonders if that party still commands of a national organizing secretary, a national chairperson, a secretary general and a women’s league president other than its silent spokesperson who seldom responds to touchy issues that ever threaten to dismantle the respective party! Too many vacuums, unless if they all could be on official indefinite leave! Good news to the competitor!
It would had been, most probably, befitting to invite Julia Gillard to refer to Morgan Tsvangirai as such champion of democracy who has spent a decade fighting Robert Mugabe and equated him to an appropriate grade of luminaries such as Raila Odinga in Kenya, whom, like Tsvangirai, remains a product of an election run-off, a product of an inclusive government due to failure to command an overwhelming electoral margin, and a leader of a dwindling political revolution.
Like Tsvangirai, Odinga has been a profound blessing to Kenyan president Mwai Kibaki with his failure to assume a government-in-waiting status for the period between the run-off and the next election. By such uncalculated political generosity, like Tsvangirai, Odinga gives his opponent sufficient grace period to research, renew, re-engage, re-strategise and re-brand for overwhelming success on the next election! Or former trade unionist -cum Zambian president, the late Frederick Chiluba, with his unrestricted donor-drive that landed him squarely in the hands of drug lords and a variety of other illicits.
Like Tsvangirai, Chiluba was a poorly schooled former long distance bus conductor and an accomplished trade unionist and former secretary general of the Zambian Congress of Trade Unions at the time of his rise to power. He later found himself with no choice, but to govern with them, the drug lords, to the detriment of his worker driven Movement for Multi-Party Democracy there-by sacrificing all the citizen aspirations. Or, Zambia’s current non intellectual president and a diplomatic blunder, Michael Sata, whom like Morgan Tsvangirai, commands of “ zero” presidential decorum; lives at high impeachment risk as compared to Mugabe’s undisputed intellectual prowess which was widely acknowledged even amongst his adversaries! Mugabe has not only inspired, but produced numerous leaders within and without his party, government, in the country and beyond, and excelled well in multiple prominent areas of human endeavour which has found the opposition seldom in praise of such achievements and generally in agreement that he abundantly possesses real rare qualities worth emulation by generations to come.
And, of course, that is not to find him (Mugabe) unwanting. Robert Mugabe remains a defenceless victim of immeasurable greed lacerated with nasty tribalism within his party and government. Mugabe has either remained grossly insensitive, or uninformed of the high levels of internal greed driven real sabotage of the presidential institution, the party and his government. Party stalwarts have shamelessly played a more leading role than the west in the reversal of the gains of the land reform programme.
Matabeleland South land sales are, but a tip of the iceberg, of a possible prevailing national scandal benefitting the party big fish and senior civil servants in the name of “ tokens of appreciation” from such beneficiaries. Innocent citizens find themselves dispossessed of land in favour of “token of appreciation” paying Zimbabweans mainly from the diaspora.
The violent dispersal of legitimate land reform programme beneficiaries and the small-scale miners ruthless invasions by criminal ZANU PF officials commanded by the Deputy Minister of Public Service and Social Welfare, Hon. Andrew Langa who is also ZANU PF Chair for Matabeleland South province, and his brothers in the name of the party, has inevitably, depreciated the value of the former liberation movement! Land holders are kicked out to make way for the chosen few with the capacity to grease the party chefs palms in cash or in kind, and Mugabe and the party face untold resentment for that! Insiza’s local mafia known as “The Langagate Scandal” that comprises of six Langa blood brothers, three of whom are senior ZANU PF officials in Matabeleland South, the District Administrator Ms Sithandiwe Ncube as ex officio member and beneficiary, and one political thug, Sipeya Sithole, who also claims to be the respective party’s provincial secretary for security, have become notorious for violent land evictions and take over raids of profitable small-scale mines.
This was an act that has successfully demobilized ZANU PF to near collapse to the best advantage of the opposition! Langa has empowered ZANU PF opponents in Insiza and Matabeleland South in the name of greed driven by the high desire to make hay while the sun shines.
It is common political sense that these are thugs who have put the party’s insensitivity to good governance to full exploitation without its knowledge. Leadershipwise, Morgan Tsvangirai, in comparison to Mugabe, remains as a prominent and permanent joke! While Welshman Ncube of Tsvangirai’s splinter faction remains an accomplished lawyer and leader with lots to banish the mediocrity-bound into hiding, and yet he commands no chance to sway national attention to his favour beyond Matabeleland and an insignificant part of the Midlands due to Zimbabwe’s most brutal tribal nerve that favours the majority shona tribes, a situation that overwhelms political common sense. This explains the fiery jostling for power amongst the shona Mugabe stalwarts.
One would have expected to see this power struggle prominent between the two vice presidents, Landa John Nkomo and Joice Mujuru. Due to the strong tribal nerve Landa John Nkomo would naturally be played out! Hence his silent ambition. Wake-up Julia Gillard! The African sun never sets! And the people of Africa know the difference between day and night! But the west, in many cases such as this one, remains fully ignorant and wholly dependent on over-zealous misinformers of shallow analysis. Morgan Tsvangirai was a hero up to about 2005.
After successfully splitting his party towards the senatorial elections of 2005 Tsvangirai ceased to be a hero, and thereafter, he has continuously blundered big time there by further eroding whatever remains of heroism in him.
Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change is an institution that had kicked off well with the interests of the people at heart for a real genuine cause on the 12th of September 1999! A cause to correct ZANU PF alleged misrule! ZANU PF had fallen into the trap of trivialising the people’s freedom dividend after a long and excruciating war of liberation. The emergence of such a force had been long over-due and the citizenry found the more reason as to why it should launch a peaceful revolt through the movement.
Alas! the Zimbabwean citizenry has long started either tracing back its foot-prints from ZANU PF or searching for other political homes or resigning into apathy due to Tsvangirai’s leadership style that lacks inspiration. Zimbabweans have gone on a hurried exodus back to ZANU PF with the hope of seeing a transformed institution that has learnt its lessons from alleged tyrannical rule.
The humiliating and devastating collapse of the “Chefs first, people last” approach! ZANU PF chefdom prevailing syndrome vakangonditokonya ndinoenda nevamwe vakawanda mumusangano/ Translates as;”If my colleagues in the party expose my greed-drive I will also reveal their evils and we will all be fired.
Inevitably, we all have to either shut-up and carry-on with the gravy train, or act to our detriment”. Disappointed with Tsvangirai’s leadership, going very ambiguous on the western sanctions against the Mugabe regime that he had so vigorously campaigned for, his ruining of all the local authorities won by his party at the 2008 harmonised election, and the unparalleled corruption levels within these institutions, rampant looting of public resources, taking of rate payers hostage, Tsvangirai’s crumbling of the people’s envisaged freedom dividend! His gambling away of the greatest opportunity for his party to lead by example in those areas of its jurisdiction, the plummeting of service delivery especially in the city of Bulawayo that had held an illustrious record for decades, even over the period of the gruesome ZANU PF and PF ZAPU conflict, due to institutionalised corruption worse than that of Mugabe’s ZANU PF has been genuine cause for a re-think!
In such sorry state would Bulawayo still be the “Magnificent City of Kings” or “Bulawayo Ruins?” With all the uncollected and scattered garbage in Harare, would the city continue to hold on its “Sunshine City” status, or that of “Garbage Disposal Site?” Where is ZESA, the robots, street lights, water! Garbage disposal and the real colour of cities. And yet the residents continue to be billed for services that never were! For South African business mogul, Herman Mashaba, in reference to the South African scenario, the silence of the wealthy, the silence of the intellectuals and the silence of the masses is not only failing the Movement for Democratic Change as a party but the Global Political Agreement government.
People must demand quality service delivery that they get billed for without fail every month end! Morgan Tsvangirai cannot lead the people if his institution is corrupt because it is the same corruption that brought it into existence! Tsvangirai bravely rose against corruption in the period prior to 2005 alleging that fewer and fewer people were benefitting while the masses toiled in abject poverty!
A revolution that lost its cause! And Julia Gillard conveniently turns her head away from this in acknowledgement of Tsvangirai’s loyalty to Australian kangaroos. The French have also come up with another crazy award that lacks real detail. Surely awards have lost their luster as they lack disciplined research, and therefore, relevant decision making detail.
It remains as very scary business to imagine what sort of governance at national level Morgan Tsvangirai and his failing party is likely to usher-in, in an impatient, corruption-weary and long distressed community. The people of Zimbabwe, the real pillars of Tsvangirai’s failed revolution, the workers in the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions, have openly resented Julia Gillard’s hero, whom, according to her, parallels only with Mandela, Aung San Suu Kyi and Xanana Gusmao – that is fatal imagination that calls for an urgent and frank re-examination of the credentials of Gillard’s sources of information and the schools that they could have gone to! The greatest honor for Tsvangirai would probably be a designer-label condom to be widely distributed even to his Methodist Church congregations to protect both himself and his victims from the risks of contracting hiv/aids.
Zimbabwe needs “The Prime Minister’s Condom” exclusive label for the market. The world has been left in wonderland as pertaining to the cause of Zimbabwe’s huge Methodist community’s splendid silence over the conduct of their prominent congregant who has become a live sexual hazard following the untimely death of his wife, Susan, some three years ago. The Methodist community has ignored the Honourable Prime Minister’s indiscriminate bulling like a wild buffalo to the detriment of the international effort against the high risks of transmitting hiv/aids in communities of the world.
Bill and Melinda Gates, would, naturally, get devastated after investing so much of their time and financial resources for the cause of containing the deadly virus faced with sexually errant expected role models and other people in influential leadership positions. So would George W. Bush junior and his wife Clara, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Kenneth Kaunda, Nelson Mandela. Zimbabwe’s Timothy Stamps, and Sally Mugabe should also be turning in her grave after her brave and dedicated contributions through Zimbabwe’s Child Survival Foundation! Surely it would be a diplomatic blunder of gross effect for Julia Gillard not to apologise to the civilized peoples of the world over her comments on his sexually errant Prime Minister pal.
Reginald Thabani Gola is a political analyst/consultant and independent journalist. He is also a fiery well published ZANU PF critic and good governance and human rights exponent.
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