There is not a moment to be lost

There is not a moment to be lost
Published: 16 January 2018 (275 Views)
The dust has settled. ZANU PF's factional war has been fought and won. ZANU PF has tightened its grip on power and the military has come out into the open as the powerbroker in Zimbabwe.
 
Mnangagwa has emerged as a personable and engaging front man for the junta and is faced with the challenges of breathing life into the economy, dealing with corruption, relieving the cash crisis, creating jobs, maintaining public optimism and rallying popular support as he goes into the election this year.

Electoral reform presents the junta with a dilemma. Mnangagwa has promised free and fair elections and he must deliver some reforms but they will be limited. As I have written previously, they will use the tools of democracy to maintain effective authoritarian control following the Chinese model. They will observe the procedural forms of democratic government without real democratisation. Having tightened their grip on power, the military and ZANU PF will not relinquish it.  It is naive to believe that they will voluntarily deliver reforms that will place themselves at risk of electoral defeat.

The factional war within ZANU PF has been fought and won but ZANU PF is still waging war on the people. How long will it take for the euphoria of Mugabe's departure to wear off and for reality to set in? The old order has not gone.  There is no new dispensation. It is the same ZANU PF. Unless we take decisive action, at least another five years of authoritarian rule is immanent.

This it is the same ZANU PF is shown by ZACC's selective pursuit of G40 - ED's fight against corruption is not about restoring fiscal propriety but is a strategy to eliminate strong party rivals - and by the recent arrests and violent repression of protestors in Bulawayo.

Mnangagwa has called for an end to political violence but ZANU PF supporters know no other way than violence and intimidation to win an election. ZANU PF has been making war on Zimbabweans for years and it will not stop now.

Yet it is the election that is the junta's Achilles heel. The credibility of the elections is crucial to the new military-backed government's efforts to re-engage with the international community and secure the foreign aid, investment and endorsement that will underpin economic recovery. They are also vulnerable because of government corruption, and they are saddled with the from the Mugabe era.

However, in order to exploit these vulnerabilities, it is imperative to mobilise those committed to democracy in Zimbabwe to direct their efforts towards achieving an overwhelming turnout of voters in support of an opposition coalition. There is not a moment to be lost!

It would seem from his New Year statement that Morgan Tsvangirai is about to step down so that a new, younger leadership can emerge in the MDC.

It is clear that a grand coalition has to be built around the MDC because it is the single largest opposition party but it is to be hoped that the new leader will look beyond the party to bring together the various opposition groups, large and small. This the existing MDC Alliance is failing to do as ego-driven personalities quarrel over the selection of candidates and post-election positions.

The new leader must present a vision of unity and inclusiveness, welcoming the contributions that each can make, and having the courage to propose the best qualified candidates regardless of party affiliation. The most effective way of coalescing voter support will be to leave the final selection of candidates to voters in each constituency by conducting primary ballots. There is not a moment to be lost!

As Morgan Tsvangirai moves on, so must those who have been so much a part of the Tsvangirai era: Tendai Biti, Welshman Ncube, Thokozani Khupe Elias Mudzuri, and Douglas Mwonzora. Their day is past. They should throw their considerable experience and support behind a new young leader who can take Zimbabwe into the future.

Tapson Muchena is an academic and a keen observer of the Zimbabwe situation. He can no longer remain silent.
Email: tapson.muchena@gmail.com.
Twitter: @TapsonMuchena



- Tapson Muchena

Tags: ZANUPF, ZACC, G40,
 0

You May Like These Videos

Comments

There are no comments.

Latest stories

Chamisa now willing to engage Mnangagwa

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 24 Views

'Soldiers fired randomly on August 1'

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 10 Views

Zimbabwe to cut company registration period to within 6 hours

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 10 Views

Chamisa statement on the prevailing economic, political and humanitarian situation

by Adv. Nelson Chamisa MDC President | 23 October 2018 | 24 Views

Cops scramble for cooking oil

by Simbarashe Sithole | 23 October 2018 | 21 Views

Mnangagwa flies out to Zambia

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 28 Views

Chigowe denies refs favour Dembare

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 20 Views

Emergency recovery measures to stop Zimbabwe economic free-fall

by Dr Tapiwa Mashakada | 23 October 2018 | 70 Views

Chamisa demands 2% tax refunds

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 85 Views

Zanu-PF chefs fail to pay workers

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 59 Views

Chamisa's youths to avenge vendor's death

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 77 Views

Zimbabwe motorists sleep in fuel queues

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 38 Views

Police pounce on Kadoma Forex dealers

by Stephen Jakes | 23 October 2018 | 75 Views

Dogs maul boy at Beitbridge border post - WhatsApp update

by Concerned Citizen | 23 October 2018 | 45 Views

Indosakusa leaves injiva in stitches

by Future Moyo aka Jamelah | 23 October 2018 | 34 Views

Kombis spend more time in queues these days

by Stephen Jakes | 23 October 2018 | 34 Views

How to find a safe and reliable online casino

by Staff Reporter | 23 October 2018 | 44 Views

Learning Factory: studying History and modern technology in Zimbabwe

by Brian Maregedze | 23 October 2018 | 36 Views

Mugabe's son-in-law appears in court, gets US$30 bail

by Staff Reporter | 23 October 2018 | 69 Views

NSSA reviews retirement grants

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 52 Views

Zimbabwe teachers to boycott Zanu-PF businesses

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 49 Views

Mthuli Ncube on a trajectory of vendettas?

by The Banker | 23 October 2018 | 280 Views

Chiyangwa demands respect he doesn't deserve

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 149 Views

Mnangagwa's Politburo, Central Committee to meet

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 191 Views

Mines Permanent Secretary in 'baptism of fire'

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 118 Views

Bid to block Mthuli Ncube's 2% tax hits brick wall

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 110 Views

Operation Restore Legacy hits RBZ

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 167 Views

Acie Lumumba fired?

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 172 Views

Vandalism, theft cost Zesa $20million

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 74 Views

Zimbabwe draws down $199 million for Hwange project

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 87 Views

Man loses $10,000 to thieves while watching street fight

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 111 Views

Woe unto enemies of Mnangagwa's 2nd Republic

by Nduduzo Tshuma | 23 October 2018 | 123 Views

Zimbabwe Parliamentary committee to engage US congress on sanctions

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 63 Views

Zanu-PF in another court victory 'on a technicality'

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 76 Views

Matebeleland North registers unemployed teachers

by Staff reporter | 23 October 2018 | 73 Views