A basic solution to Zimbabwe problems

A basic solution to Zimbabwe problems
Published: 08 February 2018 (481 Views)
Zimbabwean problems were politically created starting from 1980 when the then Prime Minister Robert Mugabe deliberately turned a blind eye to corruption. In the late eighties he lost one of his senior lieutenants, Maurice Nyagumbo, who committed suicide after he was fingered in the Willowvale motor industry scandal. Other ministers who were implicated, including Mugabe's own deputy Prime Minister, Simon V. Muzenda, were just pardoned and the cancer of endemic corruption was left to grow.

We have had a head of state who came to power in a country with an economy rated among the best in Africa and second in Southern Africa and, 37 years later, left behind a deplorable ruin. In 1980, the Zimbabwe Dollar was at par with the US dollar but he left us with no currency of our own. Our national airline had 18 aeroplanes at independence but, when Mugabe left, only 3 were flying. The unemployment rate was below 12% but when he left it was over 90%.  We had 4,000 commercial farmers who earned Zimbabwe the status of being the bread basket of southern Africa but he left us with 167 commercial farmers and we are now rated amongst the poorest countries in Africa, comparable to war-torn countries like DRC and Somalia. To cap it all, Mugabe announced that $15 billion was unaccounted for during his tenure in office. By then our national annual budget had shrunk to a mere $3 billion which his government was struggling to raise.
Its written all over, even scrawled on toilet walls, that Mugabe was a failure and now the big question is 'What next?'

Agriculture and mining were once pillars of our economy and these sectors should enable us to rebuild our nation. However, the first step to a prosperous Zimbabwe is dealing with our political leadership. Zimbabwe can do without career politicians, looters, pretenders or power hungry bosses. We need a God fearing team, a team with people at heart, a servant team that is prepared to work for the betterment of the nation instead of lining their own pockets. My fellow Zimbabweans is it reasonable that, if one is elected as a councilor, the next morning one owns a residential or a commercial stand when this is a benefit meant to reward five years of service? Is it reasonable that, if one is voted a member of parliament, the next morning one owns a twin cab vehicle and is entitled to a $2,000 basic salary, tollgate exemption, fuel allocation, sitting allowances and many more perks for even those who are hardly ever seen visiting their constituencies during their term of office? Is it reasonable that, if someone is appointed Deputy President or elected President, even within an hour one is entitled to full retirement benefits? Is it reasonable that, in a country of 13 million people which had 88 members of parliament at its independence, there are now 270 members and 88 senators? Is it reasonable that thousands are dying in hospitals because of lack of medicines and serviceable equipment yet we can afford to buy 280 Isuzu twin cabs for traditional Chiefs?

In short it is us, the electorate, who should wake up to what is going on and tell these greedy politicians what we want or ship them out. Let us value our votes  those who corruptly think our precious votes can be exchanged with a mug of beer, rice, beans, cooking oil etc. should face the chop. Those whose manifestos are no better than that of Donald Trump must not be given a chance because they will be lying to us. In 2013 we were promised two million jobs but instead we were forced into vending. Judging from our lack of economic growth rate it was not possible for the old man to create even a hundred jobs yet we clapped hands for him when we knew that the man was lying. Its high time up we become masters of our own destiny rather than to be driven into wilderness or kuperekedza vamwe mukurarama.

Globetrotting to legitimize what is already illegitimate is not the solution. Pretending that Zimbabwe is going to have free, fair and credible elections when on the ground their political commissar is daily preaching violence is not the solution.  Party members are intimidating people by demanding voter registration serial numbers and ZEC is busy covering up by trying to portray it as a chargeable offence even though some clever people have clandestinely stripped police force powers so no arrest will be made is not a solution.

The key to unlocking the chains that are shackling the lives of ordinary Zimbabweans is having a free, fair and credible election and this calls for the implementation of electoral reforms first. The basic solution is for the people to demand electoral reforms before any elections.

We want no more suffering of Zimbabweans who spent sleepless nights in bank queues, no more graduates being forced into vending with living standards that have deteriorated to third world levels. Our problems were politically created and obviously we cannot use the same minds that created the problems to solve our problems. We need new energetic players, not the same old hacks who turned our parliament into their private preserve. New brooms sweep clean.

- Chikuni Gaba

Tags: ZEC, DRC, Somalia,
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