ED Vote Not in Zim’s Best Interest

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President Emmerson Mnangagwa wearing the famous scarf.

Zimbabweans have suffered a lot in the past 38 years, and there is absolutely nothing tangible on display to show for its purported Independence.

Some would argue and blame it  all on former President Robert Mugabe while at one and same feeling sorry or empathising with President Emmerson Mnangagwa (ED).

By Tendai Mazenge.

I have no good words for the man who has been Mugabe’s buddy for close to 50 years.

ED’s blameworthiness for Zimbabwe’s socioeconomic decline remains impossible to dilute.

What he did by removing Mugabe was personal and had completely nothing to do with an attempt at restoring Zimbabwe’s legacy as this southern region’s economic powerhouse.

It might have downed ED that his business empire was then coming under threat from Mugabe.

He had suddenly become jobless and somewhat facing bodily harm from his once trusted friend and mentor – now distressingly going by the orders of Grace, his apparently now maniac wife.

Before he was fired by Mugabe, ED produced a very long document, accusing his nemesis Prof Jonathan Moyo of being an  American spy. In his long presentation, he was trying to show Mugabe that it was him who deserved his trust more than the famed ‘rocket scientist’, Prof Moyo.

If he had not been fired, ED would presumably still be singing praises for and hero worshiping Mugabe to this day.

If values, principles and the welfare of fellow Zimbabweans mattered to him at all, he should have resigned and joined opposition forces in fighting for the rights of the people but he didn’t, preferring rather to go along with the gravy train.

During his  inauguration, ED promised to deal divisively and comprehensively with corruption, giving himself and the new administration only the first 100 days to significantly turnaround and improve the country’s faltering economy.

Fast forward to this day, ED’s 100 days have lapsed and still no meaningful change has occurred to the country’s economy and socio-political order. Rather, the economy continues in free fall.

ED appears clueless. Nothing, including the economy, seems to toe the line.

By and large, activity in industries and factories has remained hugely silent, with Investors only indicating commitment to engagement. At the moment there is nothing tangible on the ground save for the signed documents.

South Africa, which is one of the biggest economies in Africa with a GDP of USD 295 billion, attracted USD 2 billion in investment last year (the whole year), but ED, with a pathetic local GDP of USD 16 billion, dares to tell the world that he attracted USD 16 billion investment in just six months.

ED needs to be honest and truthful.

Then one hears ED’s supporters branding opposition leader Nelson Chamisa a liar for laying out his vision for Zimbabwe if he wins forthcoming harmonised elections..

But the people know who exactly is lying through their teeth.

Gauteng, a South African province, has a GDP of USD112 billion (seven times bigger than the whole of Zimbabwe). Eastern Cape, that houses Port Elizabeth, has a GDP of US D18 billion, which is bigger than  Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe goes 18 times into the South African economy. ED thinks people are not good with figures  and seems to be taking Zimbabweans for granted.

Recently, he released a list of all the individuals and companies that externalised the much needed US dollars but not even one person has been taken to court, let alone face a conviction.

Elias Musakwa, who externalised USD 9 million, has been promoted by ED Mnangagwa and will now represent Zanu PF in the race to become Member of Parliament in the coming elections.

Supa Mandiwanzira and Joram Gumbo purchased snow graders in a deal worth USD26 million in  a country that has temperatures that have never reached minus one degree Celsius. Half of the graders are parked at SRTC Southerton and the used ones are breaking rapidly.

After being quizzed about the anomaly, they admitted to wasting

USD 8 million buying the wrong graders.

ED happily forgave and retained them as cabinet ministers in his new look  government.

Most roads countrywide are dilapidated and one wonders how and for what purpose the Zinara money is being used for.

Civil servants have been asking for an  increment but only nurses and doctors got a small raise after they protested. What about teachers and others?

The much hyped Zimbabwe Airways plane that landed in Zimbabwe some two months ago has been returned to Malaysia after $70 million of tax payers’

funds was used. The plane did not make a single trip. The same Ministry leased old-repainted wagons from Transnet SA in a deal worth $43 million.

Zimbabwe is reliably informed that the  wagons are incompatible and are parked at the NRZ Bulawayo yard.The ones that ED managed to use had an accident a few days ago.

A Zinara Audit in January 2018 showed that USD170 million was siphoned from its accounts and transferred to a South African account.

No investigation whatsoever was done, and no-one has been  arrested.

No inquiry and no statement was ever issued out yet some still say to Vote for ED.

When US15 billion worth of diamond money went missing , ED, Obert Mpofu and Mugabe all knew about it but now ED wants Mugabe  alone to account for how the diamond money disappeared.

Mpofu refused to answer questions in Parliament about the missing diamond money but ED, as President and one who set up the Mines Portfolio committee headed by his ally, Temba Mliswa, to investigate the matter did nothing to bring the “Obedient Son”, Mpofu, to order.

It’s a straight forward case of  contempt of Parliament.

Apparently, ED may be finding it hard to prosecute his friends and business associates, because he knows that he, too, could be implicated in some of the deals that occurred during his stint  as a minister and Vice President.

Can this man be the real change we are looking for in the new dispensation?

Many gold mines in Zimbabwe are owned by Zanu PF politicians. President Emmerson Mnangagwa has also been fingered in fueling black market activities. With hordes of cash ranging from dollars to Rand to Pulas, young men and women patronize Harare streets along 4th street, Roadport Bus Terminus, Eastgate Mall as well as the environs surrounding the Copa Cabana area. It’s not clear where these cash vendors are being supplied from.

But why is ED paying a blind eye to all this?

There is word that the country’s apex bank, the RBZ, raided all Nostro accounts. With foreign currency reserves now at bottom rock, monetary authorities are now relying on the illegal market for hard cash.

After being sworn in, ED said he was targeting criminals surrounding Mugabe. He singled out Prof Moyo, Saviour Kasukuwere and Patrick Zhuwao as the main  culprits who will not be forgiven in the new dispensation, but recently, Kasukuwere arrived in Zimbabwe following months in exile only to be charged with a minor offense of border jumping which was acquitted early this week.

Recently, ED created a Special Anti-Corruption Unit in his office, but it has been dismissed by legal experts as a nullity, as it has no legal basis at all.

Again, one is left  wondering whatever it is that has befallen the Zimbabwe  Anti Corruption  Commission.

Legal experts  said the declaration was in breach of the country’s laws as there was no legal authority allowing him to interfere with the prosecution authority, which is the sole responsibility of the Prosecutor General (PG).

Constitutionally, the president has no powers to appoint a set of prosecutors answerable to him or to his office.

The president’s other role is to direct the army so that it defends the country, whereas the

Executive investigates through the police.

The duty of the AG is to advise government, whereas the PG bears independent prosecution duties. Lawyers, on the other hand, defend. Courts are there for adjudication.

The president cannot, therefore, be allowed to unlawfully and with impunity set up and or run parallel structures within the body State as is the current scenario.

Unfortunately, the  is being superintended by a man who is supposed to act like a lawyer because he is one. ED, like many ordinary dictators, is ignoring the separation of powers doctrine that defines State institutions.

Lastly, ED appears very much unwilling to hold free and credible elections. For that, ED doesn’t deserve a vote from pragmatic Zimbabweans.

Another Zimbabwe is possible  !!!

By Tendai Mazenge is the PDP Secretary for Information and Publicity, Harare Province and MDC Alliance Policy and Research Committee. tendai.mazenge@gmail.com.

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