Tag Archives: Zanu-PF

#WednesdayWisdom: Mnangagwa’s been wooing Zimbabwe’s white sports heroes. Here’s why

Tapiwa Chagonda | University of Johannesburg
4 minute read

Sport in general, and particularly gifted sports people, have been known to rouse feelings of national unity. In the process, they instil a sense of patriotism and pride in their countries. Good examples include George Weah, the soccer legend from Liberia now the president of his country and Imran Khan, the cricketing star from Pakistan, now its prime minister. Notable sports figures have managed, to some extent, to unify their troubled nations. In the process they have shown how powerful a force sport can be.

This salient observation has not escaped Zimbabwe’s newly elected president, Emmerson Mnangagwa. In a bid to restore and paper over the badly damaged relations between the governing Zanu-PF party and the country’s white community both inside and outside Zimbabwe, Mnangagwa has appointed the former swimming sensation, Kirsty Coventry as Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation.

The 35-year-old is a seven time Olympic medallist. She is the only African to break the 1:00 min barrier in the womens 100m backstroke. She also has the highest number of individual Olympic medals of all female swimmers in history.

But Coventry’s appointment is not where Mnangagwa ended. He also reached out to the flamboyant footballer, Bruce Grobbelaar, the former goalkeeper for the Zimbabwean national football team as well as British football club Liverpool whose nickname is “Jungleman”. In an interviewhe described Mnangagwa’s call which started with the president saying: “Hello, Jungleman, how are you?”

By wooing Coventry and Grobbelaar, Mnangagwa is clearly hoping to achieve a number of outcomes. The first is that he is hoping to repair the damaged relations between Zanu-PF and Zimbabwe’s white community. As a long shot, he might also be hoping that this will help normalise relations with the West which could, in turn, unblock much needed foreign direct investment.

Working with the hugely popular Coventry and equally liked Grobbelaar could also lure the young urban electorate back to Zanu-PF. They left the party in droves for the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) when it was launched in 1999.

The history

When Zimbabwe gained independence in 1980 the country’s populationstood at just over 7 million people. The white population was around 230 000. This began to decline steadily white Zimbabweans began to emigrate to countries such as South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. The exodus increased significantly after 2000, when the Zanu-PF government began embarking on violent land grabs that resulted in Zimbabwe’s economy going into meltdown.

The last census in 2012, put the number of white Zimbabweans at 28 000. This community has been very active and is still, to a limited extent, influential, in sectors such as agriculture, mining and manufacturing. Whites have also traditionally been active in sports such as cricket, rugby and swimming.

Zanu-PF’s fractured relationship with the white community dates back to Robert Mugabe’s rule. He presided over the breakdown in relations when he began implementing a violent land reform programme which ended up benefiting Zanu-PF members and chiefs.

But relations hadn’t always been bad between the party and white Zimbabweans. At the advent of independence, Mugabe famously pleadedwith the white community:

Stay with us, please remain in this country and constitute a nation based on national unity.

And in 1980 Mugabe retained white Zimbabweans such as Ken Flower. Flower had been in charge of Rhodesian prime minister Ian Smith’s intelligence services which had been accused of masterminding the assassination of some of Zimbabwe’s leading nationalists such as Herbert Chitepo and Jason Ziyapapa Moyo.

Mugabe also appointed white ministers such as Dennis Norman(agriculture) and advocate Chris Andersen (mines) to his first cabinet.

But this rosy relationship turned sour in 1999 when the white community rejected a draft national constitution that included a clause on redistributing the country’s most fertile land – the bulk of which was in the hands of around 4 000 White farmers – without compensation.

This set the scene for violent land seizures. This, in turn, resulted in sanctions being imposed on Zimbabwe by a number of Western nations. These only served to harden Mugabe’s resolve towards the white farmers. In a presidential election rally in 2002, he thundered:

Our party must continue to strike fear in the heart of the white man, our real enemy.

In the intervening years Zimbabwe’s political and economic landscapes have continued to deteriorate as the country became a pariah state and a basket case. This was largely because of the punishing ramifications of the sanctions and the corruption and ineptitude of the Mugabe regime.

Zimbabwe’s economic crisis reached its peak in 2008 when hyperinflation reached a stupendous 231 million percent, officially, even though leading inflation experts such as Steve Hanke estimate that the country’s inflation rate far exceeded the official figure.

Picking up the pieces

For his part, Mnangagwa has always cultivated good relations with white Zimbabweans. This goes back to the 1980s when he had cordial working relationships with people like Flower who were in intelligence.

In later years, Mnangagwa has been linked to a number of white business people in some of his business ventures.

In mending the relations with the white community by roping in Coventry and Grobbelaar, Mnangagwa might just have pulled off a masterstroke. He must be hoping it will eventually help extricate Zimbabwe from its economic quagmire.

Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Johannesburg. Chagonda has in the past received funding from the South African National Research Foundation (NRF). Article curated from The Conversation.
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Zinasu victory a reflection of the turning political landscape

One primary reason why young people are cynical or even repulsed at the thought of politics is because of its mental turn off.

By Roy Muroyi
3 minute read

Watching your entire future being plundered by some old out-of-touch politicians, while you are confined to the back bench.

The youth has, for long, watched as their societies get drained of their quintessence, basic human rights trampled underfoot and institutions undermined by the Zanu PF regime.

In the July 2018 general elections, the youth overwhelmingly participated.

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission statistics showed that 60% of the registered voters in Zimbabwe are the youth, meaning the youth of Zimbabwe are setting up a new standard for themselves.

Intrigue, insiders and drama describe this year’s Student Representative Council (SRC) elections all across the country.

The Zimbabwe National Students’ Union (Zinasu) under the leadership Archibald Madida has concretely put the nail to the coffin on the Zanu PF affiliate Zimbabwe Congress of Students’ Union (Zicosu).

In a campaign aimed at emancipating the student populace and improving the welfare of students, they have managed a clean sweep in all the Students’ Representative Council elections at the National University of Science and Technology, Chinhoyi University of Technology and more recently, the University of Zimbabwe.

Zimbabwean students do not want to get involved in politics doesn’t line up with the wider national political trend.

The level of participation by students in the SRC elections was also a very clear indication that the youth are in dire need of change — change in the entire national discourse.

What is more dazzling about the elections was the tenacity, desire and will to participate in the political turf by students all across Zimbabwe.

The elections saw student leaders such as Tapiwa Chiriga, Netsai Marova, Tafadzwa Chabata and many more making an effort to move around different campuses in solidarity with their comrades that were gunning for office.Youth leaders from the MDC Alliance, such as national youth chairperson Happymore Chidziva, were also there to support their Zinasu comrades.

This clearly marks the hallmark of the evolution of Zinasu and youth participation in politics.

Student democracy is very vital to any society, both as a symbol of students being involved in democracy and as a process of exacting change in students’ associations and universities.

Universities and colleges in Zimbabwe, over the years, have been the cooking pot of future leaders and political geniuses.

It is through student politics that the MDC was able to rise and become one of the biggest political parties in Africa.

Student unions are important as they act as mediators between the school’s administration and the student population.

It is imperative to also understand that student unions have got the power to shape national policies and improve the welfare of students.

While student associations’ power may be limited, it does show students’ priorities and can push in the direction that students want national policy to go.

Often, when people talk about student politics, the one big name that quickly comes to mind is that of Learnmore “Judah” Jongwe.

Jongwe represented a new genre of budding politicians in Africa.
Some of them include the likes of MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa, political and social commentator Takura Zhangazha, Pedzisayi Ruhanya, Daniel Molokele and Job Sikhala.

As Zinasu president, Jongwe contributed immensely to the rise of student politics in Zimbabwe.

Zinasu has, over the years, been marred with infightings that made their role in the Zimbabwean political landscape unnoticeable.

However, the union has stood the test of time, from Zanu PF infiltration, persecution of their leaders as well as targeted violence on their members.

Zanu PF has also been accused of tempering with the SRC results in the previous elections.

This year’s elections have not been different. Incidences of rigging were reported by the Zinasu secretary-general Ashlegh Pfunye at the University of Zimbabwe.

The Midlands State University is next, with the Zinasu Midlands chair Tapiwa Chiriga promising nothing short of victory for their Zinasu presidential candidate Jacob Lawrence and team.

Midlands State University and Great Zimbabwe University have, over the years, been Zicosu strongholds.
A more progressive move by the youths to take charge of their destiny is here.

It is imperative for the youth of Zimbabwe in colleges and universities to realise how significant student politics is and should always participate.

Source: www.Newsday.co.zw

I’m Zimbabwe, and I’m in an abusive relationship with Zanu PF

by Thandekile Moyo | @mamoxn 
5 minute read

MY name is Zimbabwe and I am in an abusive relationship with Zanu PF.

Domestic abuse is defined as “chronic mistreatment in marriages, families, dating and other intimate relationships”.

In 1979, a woman named Lenore E. Walker developed a social theory known as the cycle of abuse which explains patterns of behavior found in abusive relationships. Initially, it was called the battered women syndrome as in her study Lenore had only interviewed women who had been subject to domestic violence. Further study has shown this cycle applies in most cases of abuse regardless of whether it is men abusing women, women abusing men, men abusing other men or women on women abuse.

What she discovered is that abuse follows a certain pattern that becomes a cycle repeated over and over again until it is broken by either the abused person leaving, intervention from a third party and in some cases, death.

I have examined my relationship with Zanu PF and I have no doubt the relationship we have fits the cycle of abuse to the tee. The cycle has been modified over the years but basically has the following phases that are repeated over and over again over long periods of time.

* Honeymoon phase
* Tension building phase
* Explosive phase
* Reconciliation or calm phase

I started dating Zanu PF in 1980 after he saved me from Rhodesia, another abuser I will not dwell much on. To win my affections Zanu PF fought Rhodesia to the bitter end and drove them almost completely out of my life. I remember my independence from Rhodesia like it was yesterday. We marked it with massive celebrations that lasted late into the night. Zanu PF was my knight in shining amour. He offered me a sense of security and I felt he loved me dearly. This was undoubtedly our first honeymoon phase.

About a year later, Zanu PF accused me of infidelity. He’s a jealous man you see. He thought I wanted to leave him for ZAPU and went into a raging fit. I tried everything to convince him he was seeing things. He then told me he knew ZAPU was hiding arms caches which they wanted to use to destroy him, so as to take me from him. He made wild accusations and told me I was hiding ZAPU and did not love him. He then withdrew all his love and threatened to wipe out my family. This was the first tension building phase.

The first explosive phase came unexpectedly. There was nothing I could have done to stop it. Under the #Gukurahundi code name, Zanu PF killed thousands of people accusing them of hiding ZAPU. I have never known such fear in my life. I couldn’t believe he was capable of such. He said I had pushed him to do it. I made him kill them. I would weep day and night because of the pain he caused me. I told his family but they didn’t believe me. I found myself thinking it would be better to leave him and told him so.

When he realised I was about to leave his change was “catapultic”. He apologised profusely and promised he would never do it again. On the 22nd of December 1987, he and my father signed a unity accord. He agreed to go for counselling. Said he loved me, couldn’t imagine a life without me and therefore asked me to stay. He promised there would be no more violence. Some say my father only agreed so that the killings of my people back home would stop. I don’t know. Typical of abusers, after that Zanu PF chose to completely ignore the incident. This marked our first reconciliation phase.

The next few years were relatively calm. I can safely say we went back to the honeymoon phase. We all got along great and he was the man I had fallen in love with once again. Some of my relatives still hated him for the earlier incidents but to be honest I simply tried to forget about the incident. Although through it all I watched what I said, was on my best behaviour and tried not to provoke him.

In 1999, the MDC came on the scene and the tensions yet again began. MDC continued trying to woo me and in 2008 I decided to give him a chance. This led to another explosive phase where Zanu PF tortured and murdered my cousins and other relatives whom he accused of encouraging me to leave him. He beat us all into submission until we agreed to another unity accord. He decided to give MDC a few rights to me, what they called a power sharing deal.

We entered another calm phase and in 2013 I forgave him completely and broke all ties with MDC. We were back to the honeymoon phase which ended with another jealous rage on August 1, 2018. Since then we have been in the reconciliation phase. He is up to his usual tricks, has asked neighbours to come and help him wash his hands of the blood of August 1. He’s promising me the world again and claiming he has changed for the better. He is a new man, he says, and calls this the “new dispensation” of our marriage. I do not know what to make of it.

A few days ago he called in my brother Zenzele Ndebele for questioning because he intends to show a documentary of Gukurahundi, an era he refuses to acknowledge at all. He also sent his police force to arrest my friends in town, the vendors, who retaliated with surprising violence. Through all this my beloved Zanu PF takes no responsibility for his actions. ZAPU pushed him into Gukurahundi. He denies 2008 killings ever happened. He says MDC incited the August 1 army killings. He has never admitted to any wrong-doing. He says the vendors provoked him so he had no choice but to beat them up. He says he is as soft as wool.

Thomas L. Cory in the Healthscope magazine says by definition, a toxic relationship is one characterised by behaviours on the part of the toxic partner that are emotionally and, not infrequently physically damaging to their partner. He says a toxic relationship damages self-esteem and drains energy. A toxic relationship is not a safe place. It is characterised by self centredness, insecurity, dominance, control and we risk our very being by staying in such a relationship.

I am in a toxic relationship with Zanu PF and I know not what to do.

Curated Post from Zim Live: https://www.zimlive.com/2018/09/im-zimbabwe-and-im-in-an-abusive-relationship-with-zanu-pf/

Why 92% of #Twimbos think Robert Mugabe University is a misplaced priority

92% of Zimbabweans on twitter think that the proposed $1 billion dollar university in honour of  Robert Mugabe is misplaced, according to our poll.

Here are some of the reasons why citizens are against the initiative:

However, the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education Prof Jonathan Moyo justified the Robert Mugabe university saying:

Furthermore…

The few who sympathised with cabinet’s decision to grant quarter of the nation’s budget to build the institution said:

See more below: